Things of the Year! Yes! That includes games and movies!
We can all mutually agree that the Earth is flat. Now this is irrefutable fact we can engage logic to confirm that the Earth doesn’t rotate around the Sun like the liberal elite would have you think! Oh no. We should quite rightly scream “what did science ever do for us?” Throw away time! Let’s replace it something more suitable to the wishy-washy sensibilities of 2018.
How do we do this?
Also, welcome to the end of year summing up.
First things first. We punch out Big Ben’s clock face. Go away time. In its place we install an alcoholic gentleman called Paul and designate him Time Man. He wears (eventually dishevelled) tops and tails and wields an elaborate scepter. We make blessings to Time Man and harnessing the magic of science and the internet we replace all digital clock-faces with a real-time Paul.
On command of his magic stick Paul decides… whenever he feels like it. It is now Midday! Or maybe that hour now lasts 4. On a mighty wave of the scepter and using the magic words Paul will command the end of the current day, to begin anew. Fuck off dawn chorus, there’s a new sheriff in town. Paul may even grow tired of the year. Naturally Paul with slowly replace the language of time, but we can’t rush these things. Midday… more like Fubyips.
Anyway! On with the End of Year List™!
Game of the Year – Scott
There were a fair few games I loved this year, but didn’t get round to writing up a review. Persona 5 is excellent… as was Yakuza 0 and Nier and Nioh and a load of others. I had a great time in the world of VR, but those experiences were mostly fleeting. A special shoutout needs to go to the little gems like Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun, which came out at the arse-end of 2016 and didn’t get the recognition it deserved. Battle Brothers left early access this year and again, it’s worth shouting about. Same is true of Road Redemption, a scrappy little title just is just a bundle of fun. I could keep going, 2017 was a fantastic year for computer games.
Anyway. Game of the year is: –
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
“The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is a game of discovery, secrets and surprises”… and I stand by that opening comment in the review. Give it another 6 months and I’ll buy it again on the Switch. I very rarely buy the same game twice… It’s just that good.
Television Show of the Year – Joey Jo Jo
I started making a list, and I thought “Wow, this is hard.” Especially as I just finished binge watching Black Mirror the other day. So there’s that, clouding my judgement. There’s only one show that I got genuinely super excited about this year though. Apologies that I’m firmly seated in a window seat in the front carriage of the hype train, but it’s Game of Thrones, innit.
Honourable mentions though: American Gods, Taboo (Tom Hardy mumbling threateningly FTW), Rick & Morty, Happy and The Handmaid’s Tale.
Going to break the rules and introduce a Best Marvel TV show subcategory.
The Gifted is alright, the series hasn’t ended, so I’m withholding judgement, same with the latest series of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. The Inhumans? That’s a no, from me, dawg. Anyway we were all waiting for Iron Fist so that we could finally get to The Defenders and unfortunately it was all a bit disappointing. Really it should’ve been Legion that won this one. A show about a guy who may be batshit crazy and had to sneak in X-Men references since that Marvel/Fox thing was still being worked out. This series was a joy and made a lot less noise before it’s release. The winner has got to be The Punisher though, right?
I had doubts, but the show was dark, exciting, and brutal as expected, also unexpectedly funny in places. Even with Karen from Daredevil popping up, this was a great standalone story. Even after Iron Fist flopped, Marvel still have some aces up their sleeve. Here’s hoping there’s more of the same to come.
Movie of the Year – Scott
Is it a superhero film you ask? No. Was it The Death of Stalin? No…. but good guess.
For those that didn’t work out it was a horror… that’s half the problem, innit. It’s nice to watch an original lean, witty film free from franchises, nostalgia and costumed heroes.
Speaking of which… there was a full compliment of excellent superhero films this year. Spiderman was great fun, but there’s only so many times I can watch Spiderman, even if it was pretty good. Hugh Jackman deserved a good send off with the excellent Logan… but… I absolutely loved Thor: Ragnarok. It had that authentic silly 80’s vibe that everyone in the world’s trying to channel, for maximum profit.
Album of the Year – Steve
Sometimes when I’m scouring through my Last.FM account trying to put together my end-of-year favourites, it’s not so much a case of which was best, but instead which was least worst. It’s not that there isn’t a ton of great music out there, it’s just that there’s now fifty billion songs being released every day and to listen to it all in the right mood would mean cloning yourself 100,000 times and putting them all on trains where they can listen and stare out the window. It’s just not practical. (Look… Dolly the Sheep was over 22 years ago, cloning is likely practical and safe. Now with a fresh minty taste – Ed)
Of the list contents, there’s usually two categories of choices. Music you can stroke your chin and say “Good job, well done” to, the sort of stuff that’s technically impressive or has a meaningful story attached to it, such as Mount Eerie’s devastating album, and then there’s music that you can’t stop playing until you don’t even hear songs anymore. You play it until it becomes nothing more than a mush of sounds that your brain has heard so many times that it now thinks it’s just white noise, like the sound of that guy in my cupboard. Well this year was an easy one for me, there was an album that fell right into the latter category. It’s Brutalism by Idles.
You see vitriolic, half spoken, half sung songs held together off obnoxiously simplistic riffs are basically the key to my heart. It doesn’t always work, I’m not that much of a robot, but when it comes together well, it’s simply joyful and makes you play it again and again. Combine that with some of the wittiest and entertaining lyrics I’ve heard in a long time, and you’ve got yourself a recipe for joy. Part of your brain wants to savour it, maybe ration it, knowing that you’ll eventually play it till hatred, but we’re in 2018 and I still love it, so it’s going well. The songs burrow their way into your head in ways that you’re sure will leave an infection which will cause you to forget the colour puce. Despite the versitility of said colour, it’s still worth it.
Guys.. wrap it up. That will do.
Not a bad year you’d agree… yes, you could argue that we played it a little safe and I really loved the unique Sexy Brutale.. but, ya know. Zelda really did wow me. A very fine year indeed.
Now…say goodbye Paul.. or shall we say “MaterBoom”.