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Invasion is about the arrival of extraterrestrial life on Earth, but those interested in seeing actual aliens—much less a, you know, invasion—had best not hold their breath, since Simon Kinberg and David Weil’s 10-part Apple TV+ series (Oct. 22) takes its sweet time getting to the good stuff. In fact, over the course of its first five episodes (which were all that was provided to press), the show barely depicts a single not-of-this-world creature, or spaceship landing on Earth, or coherent encounter between man and moonman.

So doggedly does it tease its audience with the very material promised by its premise and title that it plays like a big-budget test of one’s patience.

Given how many similar sagas have been produced by Hollywood over the past 75 years, it’s not unreasonable for Kinberg (the mastermind behind Fox’s X-Men films) and Weil to take a slow-burn approach to their saga. What is perplexing, however, is the perverse length to which they drag out their major reveals. To be sure, Invasion’s characters are all navigating a world that’s been suddenly thrown into chaos. Yet none of them know why, and the show doesn’t actually portray the specific nature of these cataclysms; they’re all fiery, earthquake-y “attacks” that happen just out of sight, and whose aftermath is all we witness. There are random clues littered throughout—kids are suffering from nosebleeds! People are intermittently beset by shrieking radio noises! Crop circles appear in corn fields!—but they’re so meager as to barely count as breadcrumbs. And as for the creatures themselves? Your guess is as good as mine, since the only glimpse provided during the early going is a shimmering quasi-invisible being that’s impossible to lucidly make out.

    Instead, Invasion spends almost all of its energy focusing on a group of disparate characters from around the globe who are dealing with personal dilemmas that are only somewhat related to the ongoing planetary crisis. In Long Island, doctor-turned-housewife Aneesha (Golshifteh Farahani) learns that her son Luke (Azhy Robertson) is the only one in his class who hasn’t had a nosebleed. She also discovers that her husband Ahmed (Firas Nassar) is a lout who’s carrying on an affair with an Instagram chef. When their quiet suburban street suffers a vague assault (leaving houses and cars in smoking ruins), they’re all forced to go on the run, much to the dismay of Aneesha, who glares and seethes at her cheating spouse for being an unrepentant creep. He most certainly is that, but what he isn’t is interesting—something that goes for this entire storyline, which drags its feet from one nondescript locale and monotonous argument to another.

    Worse still is the predicament of Mitsuki (Shioli Kutsuna), who works at JASA (i.e. the Japanese NASA), and whose heart is broken when her astronaut girlfriend Hinata (Rinko Kikuchi) dies in a mysterious space shuttle accident. It’s obvious to us that Hinata and her comrades crossed paths with incoming aliens. Invasion, however, takes forever getting Mitsuki to even consider this possibility, so busy is she moping about the death of her beloved. Considering that Mitsuki and Hinata don’t share a single on-screen scene together, the former’s grief makes no dramatic impact, and her quest to uncover what really happened to her paramour—which involves disobeying orders and visiting Hinata’s father—moves at a lethargic pace that negates any trace of import.

    Invasion also concerns a trio of additional dull protagonists: Oklahoma Sheriff John Tyson (Sam Neill), who on the cusp of retirement has a run-in with a mysterious invader; Casper (Billy Barratt), an epileptic English schoolboy who’s tormented by bully Monty (Paddy Holland), with whom he winds up at the bottom of a giant rural ravine after a school trip bus crash; and Trevante (Shamier Anderson), an American soldier in Afghanistan who stumbles upon a tripod monster in a sandstorm and then wanders around the desert trying to locate his men. Together, these threads aim to present a comprehensive multi-perspective view of the dawning calamity. Unfortunately, though, almost every scene advances the plot forward by mere centimeters (at best). The result is akin to watching a Humvee spin its wheels in the sand for hours on end.

    “The result is akin to watching a Humvee spin its wheels in the sand for hours on end.”

    That Casper is introduced listening to Nirvana’s “Drain You” turns out to be fitting, since Invasion’s plotting is enervating to the point of exasperation. Neill, Farahani, Kutsuna and Anderson are all as capable as the material will permit them to be, but their characters’ plights are one-note and drawn out to an absurd degree. Everything that initially happens to Aneesha, Mitsuki and Trevante could have been easily condensed into a few short passages, and all of the show’s meandering incidents and poignant soundtrack piano can’t alter that impression. Somewhere lurking in this morass is a theme about dealing with “others,” since the action features friction between Americans and Muslims, gays and homophobes, and disabled kids and nasty pricks. But as with everything else, that notion is drowned out by a lot of tedious melodrama, lowlighted by Hinata and Mitsuki’s constant chatter about their love of sunrises and fondness for a star sticker that Hinata stuck on the ceiling above their bed.

    While Invasion’s lack of slam-bang spectacle isn’t, in and of itself, a shortcoming, the show’s decision to withhold any entertaining core element of its conceit proves wearisome. That will undoubtedly change, but it’s difficult to imagine anyone sticking around that long. Kinberg and Weil seem to be operating from an older streaming-storytelling playbook that assumes that viewers can be counted on to finish everything they start. Yet what they fail to take into account is the fact that we currently live in an age of television overload, with a million different options available at the press of a button, and thus the ability to drop any small-screen diversion that doesn’t adequately satisfy our desires. It’s not until the end of the fifth episode that the U.S. president takes to the airwaves to announce that humanity is not alone in the universe, thereby finally transitioning the series into the very narrative terrain that should have been reached hours earlier. If you make it past that midway point, consider yourself more patient than me.

    News Source: thedailybeast.com

    Tags: they’re all the show’s dealing a mysterious

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    Thieves are now hiding $29 Apple AirTags on high-end vehicles at parking lots and then tracking them with iPhones before stealing them from driveways

    Carjackers are going increasingly technical in their attempts to steal cars – by using Apple AirTags to track high-end vehicles.

    Cops in the York region of Ontario, Canada, have recorded at least five incidents in weeks where thieves have concealed the small devices on cars before tracking them with their iPhones and stealing the vehicles from owners’ driveways.

    Thieves first target cars in public places and parking lots by hiding the $29 coin-sized AirTags next to gas caps, behind trailer hitches and under bumpers, police say.

    They then track the car and pick the ideal time to steal it on a later occasion.

    York Regional cops have reported a spate of such thefts – and have warned the technique could soon become more widespread.

    High-end vehicles such as Lexus S350s, Ford F150s, Toyota Highlanders and Honda C-RVs have been among targets, the York Regional cops said.

    Apple Air Tags, which were released for sale by Apple in April, can be attached to items such as keys, backpacks, purses and other items to track down using an iPhone.

    Video footage revealed carjacking thieves stealing a vehicle at a residence after tracking it using a AirTag device

    The $29 AirTag device, launched in April, are now being used by carjackers in Canada to track vehicles and later steal them 

    Thieves have been placing the device in hidden areas of the vehicle including trailer hitches, bumpers and gas cap areas

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    The York Regional Police department has since advised vehicle owners on how to keep their cars safe to avoid instances of future theft.

    These measures include parking your car in a garage, rather than your driveway, as well as using steering wheel locks. 

    In addition, Apple has also implemented security measures of their own which has included notifying iPhone users if an AirTag is in their vehicle.

    An alarm will also go off about eight to 12 hours after it has been in the vehicle if the owner does not have an iPhone. 

    Members of the York Regional Police, such as Detective Jeff McKercher, have advised vehicle owners to park their car in a garage rather than a parking lost and using steering wheel locks

    What are Apple Air Tags and how are they being used to steal vehicles?

    The Apple Air Tags were launched on  April 30 primarily to be used for attaching everyday items such as keys, backpacks and purses and later track them using an iPhone or iPad in the event that they go missing or get stolen. 

    Using Bluetooth connectivity, these items can be paired with a device that features the 'Find My' app which can  provide step-by-step directions to locate the tag and the missing product to which it's attached. 

    Due to the size of the device, these AirTags can easily be placed in hard-to-find areas and has recently been used in carjacking crimes in Canada.

    Thieves have placed the coin-sized item in high-priced vehicles and hidden them in areas such as trailer hitches, bumpers and gas cap areas.

    They later use the device to track the vehicle and steal them from the driveway of the owners.

    Vehicle owners have since been advised to park their car in a garage, rather than their driveway, as well as using steering wheel locks to avoid having it stolen 

    If an AirTag is found in a vehicle, owners are advised to alert the police.  

    Despite mainly being reported in Canada, American vehicle owners have also taken note of the new use of AirTags.  

    'These AirTags are getting used to track other people and that's a big problem,' Dr. Brendan Saltaformaggio told Fox11. 

    'The tag knows if it's following someone other than the owner of the tag. The tag can either make a noise.

    'Or if you have a newer iPhone, it can send a message to your iPhone and alert you that the tag is nearby.'

    In an August report, Fox stated that the tracking device could be used to steal vehicles due to location features. 

    Fox News Autos completed a test run of the product as a stolen vehicle locator as they placed them in different vehicles across various locations.

    The test run proved to be successful because it effectively pinned the location of all the vehicles. 

    The use of the Air Tag as a vehicle tracker was also used to find a man's stolen $800 scooter in Brooklyn over the summer.  

    Dan Guido, the CEO of company Trail of Bits, had used two Air Tags on his scooter with one in the wheel well as a decoy and the other within the handlebar stem which were both covered in heavy black duct tape.

    He had enlisted the use of the device as well as with help of police to find the stolen vehicle which was later found at a used electric scooter store. 

    Guido said he found damage to the vehicle as the thieves had probably looked for the device to shut off the alarm.   

    The device, which can be attached to items such as backpacks, keys and purses, have been used to track lost items using an iPhone

    The device, which went on sale on April 30, is equipped with BlueTooth connectivity to pair with an iPhone or iPad which can be personalized with a very short message or an emoji. 

    Similar to the popular Tile tag, AirTag can be attached to non-techy items like keys or wallets and provides notifications when you become separated from the item. 

    The 'Find My' app provides step-by-step directions to locate the tag and the missing product to which it's attached.   

    Find My lets people track the whereabouts of their Apple devices, such as iPad, Mac, Apple Watch and AirPods, in case they get lost – but AirTag extends this to other everyday, non-electronic items.  

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