Plugged In exists to shine a light on the world of popular entertainment while giving you and your family the essential tools you need to understand, navigate and impact the culture in which we live. Through reviews, articles and discussions, we want to spark intellectual thought, spiritual growth and a desire to follow the command of Colossians 2:8: "See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ."


Family uses Plugged In as a ‘significant compass’

"I am at a loss for words to adequately express how much it means to my husband and me to know that there is an organization like Focus that is rooting for us. Just today I was reading Psalm 37 and thinking about how your ministry provides ways to 'dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.' We have two teenagers and an 8-year-old in our household...Plugged In has become a significant compass for our family. All three of our kids are dedicated to their walk with Christ but they still encounter challenges. Thanks for all of your research and persistence in helping us navigate through stormy waters."

Plugged In helps college student stand-up for his belief

"Thanks for the great job you do in posting movie and television reviews online. I’m a college freshman and I recently had a confrontational disagreement with my English professor regarding an R-rated film. It is her favorite movie and she wanted to show it in class. I went to your Web site to research the film’s content. Although I had not seen the movie myself, I was able to make an educated argument against it based on the concerns you outlined. The prof said that she was impressed by my stand and decided to poll the whole class and give us a choice. We overwhelmingly voted to watch a G-rated movie instead! I’ve learned that I can trust your site and I will be using it a lot in the future.”

Plugged In brings ‘Sanity and Order’ to Non-believer

“Even though I don’t consider myself a Christian, I find your Plugged In Web site useful and thought-provoking. No one reviews movies like you do. Instead of being judgmental, you put entertainment ‘on trial.’ After presenting the evidence, you allow the jury of your readers to decide for themselves what they should do. In my opinion, you bring sanity and order to the wild world of modern day entertainment. Keep up the good work!”

Mom thinks Plugged In is the ‘BEST Christian media review site’

"Our family doesn't go to the movies until we go online and check out your assessment of a given film. I think this is the BEST Christian media review website that I've found, and I recommend it to my family and friends. Keep up the good work!"


Our hope is that whether you're a parent, youth leader or teen, the information and tools at Plugged In will help you and your family make appropriate media decisions. We are privileged to do the work we do, and are continually thankful for the generosity and support from you, our loyal readers, listeners and friends.

We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

Game Review

Today's action video games are, on the whole, often pretty similar. Gamemakers drop players into hyper-adrenalized situations, give them obliterating weapons, high-powered vehicles or bulging-muscle superpowers (sometimes all three) and let them have at it.

The typical storyline pits a pumped-up hero against an overpowering evil that's just begging to be taken down a peg or two. And it usually plays out in a classic scenario of good vs. evil.

Activision's newest sci-fi brawler, Prototype, mostly follows that time-tested gaming formula. Except that this time around, the title's creators apparently decided that evil vs. evil had a better ring to it.

"A game of riotous, gore-splattering ultraviolence." —eurogamer.net

After waking up on a slab in a morgue with no memory of how he got there, Alex Mercer quickly realizes that he's got the ability to toss taxi cabs like tennis balls and leap small buildings with a single bound. But don't be fooled: There's no red and gold "S" on this guy's chest, nor any thought of protecting the innocent for that matter.

No, the only thing Alex—the game's titular "prototype"— is focused upon is bloody, murderous, gut-eviscerating mayhem and revenge. The opening moments of the game make his mindset crystal clear: "They call me a killer, a monster, a terrorist," he says. "I'm all of these things."

Playing the grim-faced Alex, gamers rampage through a battered Manhattan—home to a spreading viral plague that's slowly turning the island's inhabitants into slavering zombies. The game's overarching narrative involves Alex's intention to piece together the story behind this deadly virus and figure out his role in it—not to mention dishing out some violent "attention" to whomever might be responsible for his condition and fate.

At first, though, that task is pretty tough since he can't remember a thing and because he's constantly dodging the bullets of trigger-happy soldiers running roughshod over the city's truly unfortunate inhabitants.

"Last time we checked, slicing people in half and consuming their insides wasn't part of any DC or Marvel comic books." —planetxbox360.com

Alex's task becomes less daunting once the roving, psychotic amnesiac realizes two important things: 1) He's a ready-made killer. 2) If while he's ripping his victims apart he pauses to "consume" them (a process that turns enemies into a bloody, swirling pulp to be absorbed), he gains access to all their memories.

If that makes it sound as if Prototype is all about running around in an open-world environment killing basically everyone you see ... well, that's pretty close. There is an intricate tale of military corruption and attempted racial genocide at the root of the complex narrative, but bloody carnage—especially eating your own road kill—consumes most of the screen time.

"Streets [are] literally awash with blood as he slices, dices and guts anything that stands in his way." —totalvideogames.com

Speed and agility powers propel this antihero around the city. He can run straight up the side of a skyscraper, bounce from rooftops and pound the ground to pavement-rippling effect. But Alex's most striking features—pun intended—are his shapeshifting arms.

In true Swiss Army knife style, those deadly limbs can morph into razor-sharp claws, hard-hitting rocky hammerfists, chain-like whips or giant hacking blades. With these interchangeable weapons at the ready, it's a breeze to grapple with a helicopter, elbow-drop a tank or puree a passing soldier at a moment's notice.

If all else fails, Alex can pick up any discarded rifle or rocket launcher and deliver some pain that way, too. Or if members of the opposing army are too numerous to manhandle, the sneaky prototype can morph into a replica of one of his most recent human meals (Terminator 2, anyone?), walk right up to his target and gulp him down.

"Relentlessly amoral." —gamesradar.com

Of course, scores of action titles these days showcase amped-up violence. The difference here is that there's an utter disregard for all (digital) human life. If Alex is feeling depleted he simply consumes any hapless passerby in order to recharge.

With no penalty whatsoever.

Add in tanker-loads of profanities (including ubiquitous f- and s-words) and frequent misuses of Jesus' and God's names, and what you end up with is a gaming environment that feels as ugly as the bombed-out, zombie-littered Manhattan streets usually look after Alex has strolled through them.

And you don't have to take just my word for it.

Positive Elements

Spiritual Content

Sexual Content

Violent Content

Crude or Profane Language

Drug and Alcohol Content

Other Negative Elements


Pro-social Content

Objectionable Content

Summary Advisory

Plot Summary

Christian Beliefs

Other Belief Systems

Authority Roles



Discussion Topics

Additional Comments/Notes

Episode Reviews



Readability Age Range







Record Label


PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PC




On Video

Year Published



Bob Hoose Trent Hoose

We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

Get weekly e-news, Culture Clips & more!