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Elizabeth Sandifer

Elizabeth Sandifer created Eruditorum Press. She’s not really sure why she did that, and she apologizes for the inconvenience. She currently writes Last War in Albion, a history of the magical war between Alan Moore and Grant Morrison. She used to write TARDIS Eruditorum, a history of Britain told through the lens of a ropey sci-fi series. She also wrote Neoreaction a Basilisk, writes comics these days, and has ADHD so will probably just randomly write some other shit sooner or later. Support Elizabeth on Patreon.


  1. Steven
    January 17, 2015 @ 1:17 am

    Kate Bush, live.


  2. soru
    January 17, 2015 @ 1:30 am

    discussion over, correct answer has been given


  3. iWill
    January 17, 2015 @ 1:44 am

    I really enjoyed 'Attachments' by Rainbow Rowell, and I went to see David Mitchell at a live event, which was amazing, even if 'The Bone Clocks' ultimately proved to be one of his weaker books.


  4. Bennett
    January 17, 2015 @ 1:52 am

    Taking this to mean works first published in 2014 (and not just works I first experienced in 2014) puts me in a somewhat difficult situation. Sad to say I have yet to read a book published in 2014, and have only seen one film (which I guess must take its category by default….sigh…). Don't get me wrong, there's plenty I want to look at someday – I just tend to have a 'buffer' period for financial/psychological reasons.

    But never mind that, let's make a list regardless. Lists are fun.

    Video Game: Super Smash Bros. for Wii U
    TV Show: Doctor Who's 'Listen'
    Non-Who TV Show: How I Met Your Mother's 'Last Forever'
    Film:The Three Dogateers
    Blog Post: TARDIS Eruditorum's 'Make Me a Warrior Now (A Good Man Goes to War)'
    Whatever: This New Nintendo 3DS Commercial


  5. thetvgenie
    January 17, 2015 @ 1:52 am

    Happy Valley with Sarah Lancashire, one of the best dramas the BBC have ever produced. Sherlock, obviously. Bits of Doctor Who.


  6. Matthew Celestis
    January 17, 2015 @ 2:17 am


    The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies


    Burzum- The Ways of Yore


    TARDIS Eruditorum vol.5, by Philip Sandifer


    Apart from Doctor Who, I don't watch television, so I have no idea.


    Batman 66 (the only one I regularly read)


  7. David Anderson
    January 17, 2015 @ 3:07 am

    Film: Captain America – the Winter Soldier stays with me more than some more critically acclaimed films. Apart from that, The Lego Movie.

    Books: How to be Both, Ali Smith.

    Books, genre: Either Broken Homes, Ben Aaronovitch, or Arcanum, Simon Morden.

    Television: Despite falling in all the potholes of a second season, Orphan Black.
    (Apart from that, and taking Doctor Who and Sherlock for granted, Utopia Season Two.)


  8. ReNeilssance
    January 17, 2015 @ 3:09 am

    Game: The Wolf Among Us
    Book: The Wake by Paul Kingsnorth
    Wrestling match: The Shield vs the Wyatt Family at Elimination Chamber
    Film: I didn't see a lot this year. Either Guardians of the Galaxy or the Lego Movie. Something with Chris Pratt.
    Comic: Southern Bastards
    Album: Run the Jewels 2 – Run the Jewels


  9. Chicanery
    January 17, 2015 @ 4:01 am

    Video game: Alien: Isolation, Binding of Isaac:Rebirth, and Super Smash Bros for Wii U are all tied for first place. Banner Saga would be too but I haven't played enough of it yet.
    Book: James Ellroy's Perfidia by default. Every other book I read this year did not come out this year.
    Film: Guardians of the Galaxy (a.k.a. FarScape the Movie) by default.
    TV: Hannibal, no doubt. Adventure Time is up there, though. As is Gravity Falls.
    Album: Run the Jewels 2 or St. Vincent.
    Comic: Ales Kot's Zero, BKV's Saga, Fraction's Hawkeye, Soule's She-Hulk and Wilson's Ms Marvel.


  10. Chicanery
    January 17, 2015 @ 4:03 am

    Isn't Burzum a white supremacist project?


  11. Matthew Celestis
    January 17, 2015 @ 4:49 am

    Varg Vikernes of Burzum is a racist, white supremacist moron, yes. Plenty of his fans find his political views disgusting.

    But he has also made some really fascinating metal and ambient music.


  12. Eric Rosenfield
    January 17, 2015 @ 4:50 am

    The Bone Clocks


  13. peeeeeeet
    January 17, 2015 @ 6:15 am

    In terms of stuff that first appeared in 2014:

    Orange is the New Black S2
    Brooklyn Nine-Nine, half of S1 and half of S2
    Final Fantasy X HD
    Rocksmith 2014 Edition

    … that's pretty much it.


  14. reservoirdogs
    January 17, 2015 @ 6:58 am

    Films-Birdman, Inherent Vice, Grand Budapest Hotel, Boyhood, and that one Superhero movie no one liked.
    TV shows- True Detective, Game of Thrones, Doctor Who, Over The Garden Wall, and Fargo
    comics- Loki, Wicked and Divine, Multiversity, Ms Marvel, and Supreme: Blue Rose
    video games-Walking Dead


  15. iWill
    January 17, 2015 @ 7:41 am

    Nice to see some more love for David Mitchell. The Bone Clocks was quite fun, wasn't it? Which was your favourite bit (always an apropos question with Mitchell's books).


  16. Daibhid C
    January 17, 2015 @ 8:37 am

    (Sticking with a strict definition of "came out in 2014", so not the comics I read in UK reprints, or the paperback of Raising Steam)…

    Film – Guardians of the Galaxy

    TV – Doctor Who; Flash

    Books – Mrs Bradshaw's Handbook; Professor Stewart's Casebook of Mathematical Mysteries; Star Trek Section 31: Disavowed

    Comics – Multiversity;


  17. Bob Dillon
    January 17, 2015 @ 9:05 am


    eurovision for Rise like a pheonix, and My S?owianie


  18. arcbeatle
    January 17, 2015 @ 9:20 am

    TV: Doctor Who had my favorite Series since the show came back, and maybe of all time. I really can't stress more how pleased I was with it.
    Grimm has also proved to be one of the most consistently fun and creative American shows for me.
    Gracepoint was also a joy– I enjoyed it more than Broadchurch!

    Movies: The Edge of Tomorrow was probably the biggest surprise for how much I enjoyed it. The Hunger Games Mockingjay Part 1 was also a much better movie than "Catching Fire" and felt like a real film rather than a movie, if that makes sense :P.
    Best film I saw was probably Snowpiercer though.

    Books: I read a ton of Murakami this year, and I'm totally hooked. Just a fantastic author! Oh, and "The Blood Cell" was the most enjoyable "new series" Doctor Who novel I've read!

    Also, my Doctor Who poetry book came out, "An Eloquence of Time and Space." I'm still proud of it!

    Music: "The Next Day Extra" the album of remixes and bsides from David Bowie's new album was so good I've listened to it more than the real album– or anything else this year. its strangely spectacular.

    Podcasts: Serial. Listen to Serial. I think its going to change podcasts forever.


  19. Daru
    January 17, 2015 @ 11:07 am

    Films – The Double, Interstellar, Guardians of the Galaxy, Birdman, 2001 re-release, What We Do in the Shadows,
    TV shows – Black Mirror, The Detectorists, Extant, Flash, Game of Thrones, Doctor Who series – best series ever pretty much, & Sherlock
    Comics – Read From Hell for the first time
    Books – The Ocean at the End of the Lane
    Plays – National Theatre Live: Macbeth with Kenneth Branagh & Alex Kingston


  20. Daru
    January 17, 2015 @ 11:08 am

    Podcasts: Pex Lives, Verity!
    Blogs: Tardis Eruditorum, Shabogan Graffitti


  21. C.
    January 17, 2015 @ 12:15 pm

    Comics: Wicked + Divine, Hawkeye, Sex Criminals

    Music: Sturgill Simpson, Spoon, Lydia Loveless, Ex Hex, D'Angelo, Jenny Lewis, Miranda Lambert, Todd Terje, Jessie Ware

    TV: True Detective, The Americans, Capaldi's 1st, Mad Men

    Films: Only Lovers Left Alive, Boyhood, Edge of Tomorrow, Snowpiercer (flawed, but still enjoyable as all hell), Under the Skin


  22. Anton B
    January 17, 2015 @ 1:00 pm

    Film: Under the Skin.
    TV: Doctor Who, Listen. Arrow season three, Flash season one, Black Mirror, and episode one (only)of Utopia season two.
    Books: deliberately avoided due to my own writing project.
    Comics: Wic-Div, Supreme Blue Rose, Multiversity.


  23. Doctor Memory
    January 17, 2015 @ 1:19 pm

    Right there with you on The Winter Soldier. I watched it last month on a very long plane flight, expecting nothing more than that it might be a moderately entertaining diversion for a few hours, and instead was absolutely riveted. It's easily the best of the Marvel Studios movies, and the action pieces (with the exception of a smidge of dodginess around the Falcon effects) were better than anything that Hollywood has produced since the first Bourne movie.

    And then afterward I looked up the directors and realized that it was the same guys who'd directed the paintball episodes of "Community" and it all made sense.


  24. liminal fruitbat
    January 17, 2015 @ 1:53 pm

    Films: Captain America: The Winter Soldier or Mockingjay part 1
    TV shows: Listen
    Comics: Loki, Ms Marvel, WicDiv, and possibly cheating but the new collected editions of Lucifer
    Books: The Ocean at the End of the Lane, The Girl Who Soared Over Fairyland And Cut The Moon In Two


  25. Jarl
    January 17, 2015 @ 2:16 pm

    Best TV:
    * True Detective – This show was amazing. I was already getting drawn into the gritty, beautifully textured world it was set in before it suddenly dropped reference to the King in Yellow, and like many fools on the internet I suddenly took an interest in picking every shot apart. Unlike some fools on the internet, I definitely feel satisfied with where the story went. Favorite Episode is a bit of a chore: Who Goes There and The Secret Fate of All Life are both really fantastic. The speech about "to us it's a sphere, but to them it's a circle" confirms, for me, the series' true form as cosmic horror, regardless of how many wriggly tentacles are ever actually on screen.
    * Doctor Who – I wouldn't go so far as to say "best since series one", or even "best since series 5", but I do really love Capaldi, and I think they finally got Clara to work. Hell, they finally got the Master to work. Listen is such a highlight for me that I actually kinda got sick of it, but Deep Breath remains aggressively charming every time I see it.
    * Gotham – It's so refreshing, coming off the Nolan years and past the interminable CW-ification of superheroes on television, to finally see Batman being made by people who grew up with Tim Burton and Michael Keaton as their chief creative influence, a series where any given still could be a level from Arkham Knight. Gotham is hilarious, it's grimy, it's kinky, it's twisted, and it's more than willing to be outright crazy. The best part about Gotham is, in fact, the episodes where it's trying to be a normal police procedural crime drama, because unlike every other such show on television, the result of this episode could actually be that there's an avenging spirit of proletariat rage that takes the form of a goat and possesses people to drive them to commit serial murders. In a show where the Court of Owls could conceivably be revealed any day now, anything is truly possible. The only real bad mark is that Ben McKenzie doesn't quite seem tough or serious or interesting enough to carry a scene on his own, so whenever a writer tries to cast him as anything but the straight man to whatever madness is going on, he's at a disadvantage. The other, more minor bad mark is that I worry this will never actually become The Batman Show, and it so deserves to be. I dread the day when 30 year old David Mazouz is wearing a black trench coat and a domino mask and calling himself "The Dark Blur" because some other jackass is Batman in the movies and the studio's nervous people will get confused about two Batmen. Now, it is possible that I love Gotham mostly because it plays so well with both my sense of aesthetics (visual, aural, prose-wise, in general) and because it rather startlingly appeals to my actual fetishes, but it seems unfair to dismiss it just because someone read my diary growing up and decided I deserved to have a network television series aimed directly at me.
    * Elementary – This was the year where the Cyberpunk tone the show was already cultivating went into overdrive. Season two introduced "Everyone", who aren't just Anonymous, they're ostentatiously Anonymous (though technically, it introduced them in late 2013). No other show on television would, could, or indeed should mention the train set mutual masturbation session. It also introduced us to killer robot mosquito drones used to commit murder right in a police interrogation room. It brought us restauranteurs serving as covert military intelligence operatives. I love cyberpunk on TV, and even if this lacks the grimy pipes and manhole covers, the gleaming chrome computers and monofilament katanas (though I wouldn't count that one out just yet), the street samurai (likewise) and any grids to deck into (more of a Sherlock thing), it's still gloriously Cyberpunk, and I love it.


  26. Jarl
    January 17, 2015 @ 2:20 pm

    Honorable mentions:
    * Twin Peaks – I rewatched Twin Peaks this year, actually just before it was announced that the show was coming back, with a followup to be mentioned below. This was my first full rewatch of the series, and my first time watching it with someone else (my mom). It's always pleasing to see the little hints and details that you missed the first time. It's a common mistake to say that Lynch never plans anything out and thus nothing can be actual foreshadowing, Lynch creates as an act of meditation. The plan is entirely subconscious, and he acts in accordance with it without any structure or forethought. Twin Peaks is the bottle, the plan is the rock, and Lynch is Agent Cooper, exercising his mind-body coordination to tease the story of the show out of his inner mind.
    * Fringe – I also rewatched this for the first time this year, though I've rewatched individual episodes plenty of times. Again, it's so pleasing to see the little bits you never noticed before, the connections you never made at the time. I also checked out the Fringe comics, including Beyond the Fringe which has some startling imagery. I've never been able to find out if there was more than the first three issues, but I'd love it if there was. Like many, I felt the fourth and fifth seasons were a strange detour on an otherwise wonderful series (and it's telling that the happy ending of both is that they never happened), but unlike some I actually enjoyed the detour. Walter Bishop is a scientist we can all get behind.
    * The X-Files – Man, I was on a classic sci-fi TV kick this year. This was the first time I decided to sit down with the X-Files and treat it like a show I could watch regularly, rather than some crazy thing to run away from whenever it was on, as I did when I was a kid. I found the early episode Darkness Falls to be incredibly interesting, though. Get this: There's this forest where some old growth trees have been cut down. Inside the trees are microscopic creatures that live in, and disguise themselves as, shadows. The forest belongs to them, it is made clear, and they will literally eat people alive, almost reducing them to skeletons, in order to make this clear. Luckily, light makes them dormant, and our heroes are able to eventually get away. What a clever sci-fi TV idea, I wonder if anyone else ever did something similar…


  27. Jarl
    January 17, 2015 @ 2:39 pm

    Best Movies:
    * Captain America: The Winter Soldier – I've probably written too much about this already. Hell, I've written too much above already. But suffice it to say, this is one of the best movies I saw all year. The power fantasy of Captain America isn't that he beats up the bad guys or that he's always nice even when the world isn't, it's that when you're Captain America, there aren't shades of grey, there's evil and there's good and any confusion is just a plot by the evil. George Bush was a Nazi plot, in other words, which is hilariously and refreshingly bold.
    * Guardians of the Galaxy – Man, is this just gonna be a bunch of Marvel stuff? I think it is, I don't think I watched a lot of new movies this year. Still, what a fun, funny, and fun-tastic(?) movie. It's like Star Wars, only I'm not saddled with an overabundance of childhood nostalgia for it that complicates my enjoyment of it.

    Honorable Mentions:
    * Taxi Driver – On a lark, I grabbed Taxi Driver at the pawn shop, since we didn't have a copy of it. What a wonderfully grimy movie. What a nasty, gross little world it is, filled with terrible and fascinating people. I couldn't watch Taxi Driver every year, but it's a movie that benefits from regular screenings. The things you see and understand when you're a teenager seeing for the first time are vastly different from the ones you see years down the line.
    * The Social Network – This was actually the first time I watched the movie, and it's pretty damn good. I loved Eisenberg's creepy portrayal, it's so perfectly supervillainous that I'm not at all shocked by his casting as Lex Luthor (though I'll admit, I'm not sure how he'll look bald…)
    * Peter Jackson's™ The Hobbit©: Part Two®: The Desolation of Smaug© in I-MAX™ 3D© (jesus christ, Jackson, really?) – With the notable, singular, and fantastic exception of the herein referenced titledrop, I found 2 to be almost completely superior to 1. I felt the comedy was better timed, the action better illustrated, the meatiest parts of the story told, though Mirkwood was bizarrely chopped down. I figured the point of introducing Tauriel and Legolas to the story was so the Mirkwood bits could go the distance easier, but the result was a bit of mucking about with spiders and then we're in the elven frat house. I can see the reasoning behind losing the mysterious teleporting party, but Peter Jackson doesn't seem the type to actually cut out content from the story while he's simultaneously hammering more content in…


  28. Jarl
    January 17, 2015 @ 3:26 pm

    Best Toys:
    * Transformers Generations Windblade – Now, there's a certain extent to which Windblade is great just for her concept, for what she represents. She's the fan-built bot, she's the big fembot comic book star, she's the strangely kabuki-and-kill bill influenced jet autobot. And all that does both elevate her and yet also put an asterisk on her inclusion in any "best of" list. She's got problems, some of them serious, and if it weren't for both the sheer amount of effort put into her and the very excellent things she represents, she might even slip down to "Alright but deeply flawed" or, god help us, "mediocre". She has a great gimmick with her scabbard, which is to say she has a scabbard at all, and can use it in a number of ways. She's got fascinating wings, which is a bizarrely rare thing to say about a jetformer. She has a tamashii stage flight stand peg hole, which until this year was unheard of on transformers. Her VTOLS can position themselves to give her thrust vectoring. Her torso can mildly un-transform to give her an ab crunch. She has so many little transformation variables that, with a different paint job, she could be a completely different looking and acting character. It's just a shame about her feet, and her hands, and her neck and collar, and her legs, and the center of her vehicle mode, and all the other weird things that go wrong with her. Aside from all that, a great figure.
    Marvel Legends Black Widow – This was the year that Hasbro stood up and said "Boys toys and girls toys aren't selling well enough anymore to justify a distinction, everybody close ranks." Suddenly, a critical character missing from any 6 inch toyline finally got a release, and… well, again, the fact that it's MCU Black Widow at all almost justifies a spot on this list, even though she has some problems. Namely, and not surprisingly, whatever the hell's going on with her platform heels. Do I just not remember that dramatic scene where she's going around in her spy-suit and enormous platform heels doing kicks and flips and hurricanranas and shit? Ignoring that, she has pretty good articulation, decent swappable hands, excellent swappable head sculpts, and actually pretty good paint and detailing. It's just shameful it took until her third major role in a Marvel Studios film before Hasbro gave her a figure. And how long will it be before Marvel gives her a movie, for that matter?
    * Star Wars Black Han Solo – Oh how I love this figure. The simple dignity of good joints, of solid paintwork and sculpting. And then, to expand it, fantastic accessories. I literally can't think of anything else they could have included with it, it's just too well done. I suppose that's one strength of a character with a specific costume, it's easy to create the definitive figure of them. It's just rare that it's done right on the first go.
    * Star Wars Black Scout Trooper – I'm really trying to avoid being an army builder for Star Wars Black. It's not a cheap toyline, for starters, and I don't think my life would actually be enriched by owning dozens and dozens of pieces of identical white plastic. But this guy makes a pretty good case that there's something to be appreciated in varieties of white plastic. His subtle paint work, his excellent sculpting, and of course his speeder bike (Though the lack of posability on the bike has me a bit bummed out, not even the handlebars move…) all demand to be owned, and demand that you own more like him. I've resigned myself to buying just one of each kind of stormtrooper. The japanese companies alone will probably build me a little squad of stormies to harangue my other figures…


  29. Jarl
    January 17, 2015 @ 3:35 pm

    • NECA's Xenomorph Queen – that's a huge bitch. Seriously, she's almost three feet long, and over a foot tall. That's 1/12th scale. She's like a t-rex towering over my collection, only she's not a t-rex, she's a fucking building designed by H.R. Giger. She is the big bad mama and all my figures are powerless to stop her rampage.
      * NECA's Dog Alien – and the other alien I got recently, though this one's a bit ambiguously 2014-ish. She's a spunky little sterile female, and between her canine origins and her spectacular hip joints, I have a really hard time not calling her "Doggystyle Alien". Her tail is a deadly sword, her hands are daggers, her head a battering ram, and her legs a coiled spring. She's glorious, and totally redeems any valid complaints I have about NECA's quality or articulation in general.
      * SH Figuarts Iron Patriot – Oh the beautiful irony: The best Iron Man 3 toy came out a year after the movie left theaters, and the best red white and blue American character's action figure is exclusively sold in Japan. It feels… redundant and silly, let's say, to praise SHFs. It's like praising the qualities of chocolate, or Tom Baker. It's simply amazing, and barring anything terrible going wrong, it's going to remain amazing. "Why did Bandai take so long to make the figure?" doesn't matter (though it's because Bandai is an after-the-fact licensee, unlike Hasbro who starts production before the movie does), the toy simply stands on its own merits and justifies itself as amazing. And it is. And thus, my sick desire to own all the MCU villains at six inch scale is satiated… for another day, at least…
      * McFarlane Assassin's Creed Aveline – I feel a little like a traitor saying this, but I'm so glad NECA lost the AC license to McFarlane. NECA's scale is all out of whack, and their articulation can be very spotty. McFarlane's AC stuff can also be hit-or-miss, but Aveline, she's a hit. Her accessory count is superb, loading her out with all the weapons she could require for any covert action. Her articulation is… eh, about right for the AC line, though I don't understand what went wrong with her ankles. Her sculpt is beautiful. Her paint is excellent. A general quality of spirit and good intention comes through almost every facet of the figure, and there's no figure I'd rather send on a solo assassin hellfire run against my Lady Diablo.


  30. Jarl
    January 17, 2015 @ 3:35 pm

    This comment has been removed by the author.


  31. Jarl
    January 17, 2015 @ 3:36 pm

    Honorable Mentions:
    * Marvel Legends Hope Summers – I actually don't like this figure much off the shelf. She's got substandard articulation, very basic sculpt and paint work, and mediocre accessories. But, what she has in spades, is character, and since I don't read X-Men comics, that character takes one form to me: Star Wars Black Mara Jade. A stormtrooper belt, hitched around the waist. A sash made of the finest pajama drawstring, tied up to hold a lightsaber. A lightsaber stolen from a broken Darth Maul statue. Absolutely no other changes. Boom, my desk's Luke Skywalker now has a stalker, and she could conceivably, if one were the type to say such things, be called tsundere for him. Still not a great figure, but I still loved making the purchase because of how well it turned out on my desk, and because of how cheap she was on sale.
    * Call of Duty Megabloks: All of them. – Just… all of them. I'm not sure how many came out this year and how many came out last year, and there's some sets I don't want, but every CoDBloks set I bought was amazing, and they've completely re-addicted me to block building. The CoDBlocks micro figure is just so damn good, it's mind-boggling. I've spent way too much money on this line already, and there's basically no evidence that's going to stop or even slow down in the coming year. I just don't want to talk about them because they could take up a whole post themselves and frankly a lot of it would be me saying "aaauugh this is amazing look at it! There's no pictures or anything BUT IMAGINE LOOKING AT IT!" I wanna get the black hawk this year, and maybe get my tabletop gaming group into collecting these things too…


  32. Doctor Memory
    January 17, 2015 @ 3:40 pm

    Movies: As noted above: I enjoyed "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" far more than I enjoyed any number of high-prestige films this year. It helped that I had literally no expectations for it than "will make two hours pass quickly", but goddamn the craftsmanship on that movie. The Russo Brothers, befitting their background in (extremely good) sitcoms understand timing a thousand times better than (for example) Michael Bay, and turned out to be shockingly good at shooting both action sequences and quiet character bits: indeed of all of the MCU films they're the only one's who've yet coaxed a decent performance out of either Sam Jackson and Scarlett Johanssen nevermind both simultaneously.

    Plus: Robert fucking Redford. The only way the movie could have been better would be if they'd titled it "Captain America: Three Days of the Falcon"

    TV: man, an embarrassment of riches here. First, duh, Doctor Who: easily the best season of the show since 2005, and the first moment when I actually thought Moffat was starting to feel like he actually had a handle on the whole "running the show" parts of the job and his own scripts didn't all feel like first drafts. There were still a few crap episodes as there always are (apologies to our esteemed host, but no close reading will ever redeem Kill The Moon's inherent awfulness), but in general this felt like the show finally firing on all cylinders.

    Second: True Detective. It flubbed the landing very very badly, but out of eight episodes seven were just astonishingly good. Everyone raved about McConaughey, but for my money the real revelation here was Woody Harrelson finally getting a part he could sink his teeth into: Marty Hart was an all-too-believable abyss of toxic masculinity.

    Third: OH MY GOD BLACK FUCKING MIRROR. I don't have to tell you guys about this, right?

    Novels: this wasn't a big year for novel-reading for me. James Ellroy's "Perfidia" wins more or less by default: it's Ellroy doing his Ellroy thing, which he does better than anyone else.

    Comics: back into "embarrassment of riches" territory. Where to even start? Sex Criminals, Saga, Multiversity, Ms. Marvel: while DC mostly just quietly exploded, Marvel and of all companies Image raised the bar for quality over and over again.

    Music: the announcement of a new album by Sleater-Kinney was more exciting to me than just about any bit of music actually published this year. But "Run the Jewels 2" was pretty cool too.


  33. ferret
    January 17, 2015 @ 7:18 pm

    Having a young family I've not had time/energy to consume much media outside of the Octonauts and The Lego Movie (although both are excellent in their own ways), so these probably not the best of what's available, just the best of the little I managed to ingest – little of which originated in 2014, I imagine.

    Movies: Dredd and Robocop – both interesting movies in the own right. Dredd was perfect, right down to the ending – I'm surprised a sequel hasn't been commissioned. Robocop was everything I hoped it would be: not a pointless retread of the excellent 80s movie but an attempt to explore some different concepts springing from the same base idea. Impressive support cast, too.

    Comics: The Immortal Iron Fist, Complete Collection Vol.1 – bought on the strength of the authors Daredevil run alone, with zero knowledge of the character beyond small appearances in that Daredevil run. Loved it, can't wait until I have the funds for Vol. 2

    TV: It's got to be Doctor Who – we renovated our house in 2014 to the point where the TV was unplugged for 6 months and didn't miss it due to our family commitments. .. the exception of course being when I'd drag it back into the house and precariously balance it by the now almost inaccessible aerial socket for Doctor Who. The winner goes to "Mummy on the Orient Express", a brilliant standalone episode that holds up to re-watching very strongly. I would in theory happily use it to introduce or reintroduce people to Doctor Who – I don't see any issue with the background continuity of this supposedly being Clara's final trip, it comes across as a bit of harmless "in media res" that's quite appropriate: why would Clara stay/why would you watch Doctor Who?

    Books: a little book called A Golden Thread has been a great read despite me having basically no comic book exposure to Wonder Woman outside of Alex Ross' Kingdom Come. Also sporadically reading Colleen McCullough's "The Grass Crown" in large chunks (her chapters are huge) on the rare occasions I get to soak in the bath.

    Computer Games: don't make me laugh, I haven't had time for those! Well, backgammon on my phone I guess.


  34. ferret
    January 17, 2015 @ 7:21 pm

    Music: OK GO have a great new album – "Hungry Ghosts" – that they have uploaded in it's entirety to their youtube channel. "I won't let you down" and "The writing's on the wall" particularly, both of which have amazingly complex one-take videos.


  35. Drake
    January 17, 2015 @ 10:06 pm

    Somebody else who likes the finale of How I Met Your Mother? I didn't know any more existed! I thought I might be the only one.


  36. Drake
    January 17, 2015 @ 10:18 pm

    Films: Veronica Mars, Boyhood, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Guardians of the Galaxy, and Doctor Who: Deep Breath (if I saw it in a movie theater it counts as a film, right?).

    TV Shows: Doctor Who, How I Met Your Mother, Mad Men, and You're the Worst

    Books: I didn't read any books released in 2014 during that year (just started reading The World of Ice and Fire, my first 2014 book), but I did read a lot of great stories from years past throughout it. The big highlights are the Scott Pilgrim graphic novels, which are incredibly witty and just fun to spend a couple hours with. I have a very young baby brother and have been reading all sorts of children' books to him lately, and we've found Neil Gaiman's Chu's Day to be utterly charming.

    Music: Mal Blum. My god, any thing Mal Blum has done. Her album Tempest in a Teacup is particularly jawdropping. She didn't release it in 2014, but that's when I discovered it, and when I got a chance to see her live at The Chris Gethard Show in NYC.

    Video Games: I don't get to play many video games these days, and I tend to play games even older than the books I read. The newest game I played in 2014 was Assassin's Creed: Black Flag, which was a decent amount of fun and something of a return to form for the series, though I've heard bad things about it's most recent sequel.

    Plays: Alas, I only saw one play in 2014. They tend to be pretty expensive. I saw Michael Cera, Kieran Culkin, and Tavi Gevinson in This is Our Youth on Broadway which was… okay. I didn't love the script or some of the direction, but Kieran Culkin did some great work in it, and both he and Cera signed my copy of Scott Pilgrim vs. the World afterward, which was cool. I hope to see more plays this year (I'm going to be seeing Disgraced before it closes, so that's cool, but don't have any concrete plans to see anything else as of yet).


  37. Doctor Memory
    January 18, 2015 @ 4:55 am

    Er, "while DC mostly just quietly imploded."


  38. Daibhid C
    January 18, 2015 @ 10:19 am

    Oh, I'd forgotten about Gotham. I'm enjoying it currently, but like you, there's a nagging voice in the back of my mind waiting for the network to screw it up. (I'm less worried about the Dark Blur as I am about the possibility that, since Young Bruce is one of the best things in it, he won't be allowed to go off and travel the world learning mad ninja and detective skills.)


  39. Robot Devil
    January 18, 2015 @ 1:03 pm

    Lucy, The Lego Movie, and Snowpiercer. the first two were trippy sci-fi, Lucy all about the posthumanism/transhumanism, Lego Movie more Grant Morrison. Snowpiercer was lots of fun.
    I too played Ass Creed: Black Flag. Still playing, and I love it. it has a real sequel, Ass Creed: Rogue, which I want to pick up.


  40. Kit
    January 18, 2015 @ 1:27 pm

    Justin Lin, of Fasts and Furiouses 3, 4 ,5 and 6, directed the original paintball episode; only one of the Russos directed the sequel, but they were co-showrunners on the first three years and directed dozens of episodes separately. (Joe even returned to direct episodes freelance when Harmon was reinstated.)


  41. encyclops
    January 18, 2015 @ 8:55 pm

    ::flings self on bed in California, weeps disconsolately::


  42. Daru
    January 19, 2015 @ 4:00 am

    This comment has been removed by the author.


  43. Daru
    January 19, 2015 @ 4:01 am

    Oh man that would have been amazing to see her!


  44. Garth Simmons
    January 19, 2015 @ 1:31 pm

    This comment has been removed by the author.


  45. Garth Simmons
    January 19, 2015 @ 1:32 pm

    Rectify Season 2.


  46. Daru
    January 19, 2015 @ 10:26 pm

    Yes I found the Winter Soldier pretty riveting too.


  47. Daru
    January 19, 2015 @ 10:39 pm

    Thanks for the mention of Gotham, myself and my partner are really getting into it, love the griminess!


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