MORTAL KOMBAT: LEGACY Season Two Bursts onto Computer Screens
Earlier this month, this writer was lucky enough to receive the opportunity to interview the up and coming director Kevin Tancharoen about his much anticipated follow-up to Mortal Kombat: Legacy. On September 26, the second season of the popular web series debuted on the Machinima YouTube channel. Have you taken a look at the videos?
The series of ten episodes continue the story Tancharoen began telling in the first season. The narrative explores the relationships and rivalries between some of the franchise’s most well known characters in their on-going clashes with the dark forces of Outworld.
The structure of the second season of Mortal Kombat: Legacy has shifted drastically from the highly structured, episodic nature of the first season. Instead, the story-telling assumes a more fluid, feature-film like flow. This change is the basis of this writer’s prime criticism of the second season. As someone not highly read in the Mortal Kombat continuity, it was easy to get pulled from the plot in the struggle to keep track of, and understand the complicated narrative. Not only is there a number of important characters to keep straight, but Tancharoen is not afraid to jump through a convoluted timeline, using a complicated mixture of flashbacks and flashforwards throughout the second season.
It has to be mentioned that this point of criticism does nothing to detract from this writer’s enjoyment of the well directed, visually stunning Mortal Kombat: Legacy. The web series has an incredible, wide ranging scope, and it is almost impossible to tell that Mortal Kombat: Legacy was filmed on a shoe-string budget under a manically short shooting schedule. The fight scenes, which many would argue are the life blood of the Mortal Kombat franchise, are carefully staged, and shot in such a way to emphasize the realism of the hand to hand combat. Kevin Tancharoen’s flair for carefully blocked choreography (the director has a lengthy background in music films) and the stellar martial arts training of the performers greatly contribute to the impressively staged fight scenes throughout the season.
Mortal Kombat: Legacy is a must-see for any fans of the popular, long-standing video game franchise. The well crafted narrative is interesting, and easily provides a topic of discourse among fans of the series, all one has to do is read through the dozens of YouTube comments on each episode. However, there’s plenty for new comers to enjoy in Mortal Kombat: Legacy as well. The web series is an excellent, polished entry into the action genre, worthy of attention from anyone interested in action and martial arts cinema. The incredible scope and polish of Kevin Tancharoen’s Mortal Kombat: Legacy places it on a plane above many of its digital peers.
The full ten episode, second season of Mortal Kombat: Legacy is available on the Machinima YouTube channel.