A list of my top media things from 2018, or at least things I enjoyed in 2018.
Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik. I read this late in the year, but easily the best story I read this year. The summary on the back doesn’t really do it justice. And the end is just 👌🏼.
Vacationland: True Stories from Painful Beaches by John Hodgman. A very funny memoir. Made for great bedtime reading.
Provenance by Ann Leckie. Set in the same universe as her Ancillary trilogy, but relatively smaller in scope. I appreciate that she pulls off not just telling the same story.
FooL on CooL generation by the pillows. Technically a soundtrack to the FLCL sequels, but functionally a “here’s some great music by the pillows from the last 18 years”. And actually available on US streaming services! The original FLCL soundtrack was my first import from Japan.
I’ll Be Your Girl by The Decemberists. Still enjoying this album. Saw them live, and they still put on a great show.
The Other Shore by Murder by Death. My first listen to the band. I’ve really enjoyed it.
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. I love comics. To paraphrase someone else, this is a comic book movie. Beautiful, fun, humorous. Watch it on the big screen if you can.
Mary and the Witch’s Flower. Well done, beautiful and fantastic aesthetic. Not quite that Ghibli level of perfection, but very much that type of story.
Thor: Ragnarok. Took me a while to see it, but wow. It’s far from perfect, but it is fun. The scenes are all visually stunning, the music perfectly paired, and just enjoyable throughout.
Adventure Time finished this year. The last episode was great. A nice wrap up to a show that started out much simpler than it ended.
Celeste. I’m not a fan of the brutal platform genre that became big with Super Meat Boy, but Celeste does an excellent job of easing you into it, and you can complete the main story without dealing with anything too insane. The story is great. All the feels.
Destiny 2 continues to occupy a lot of my time. The Forsaken expansion was very well done, and has kept me coming back.
The Stone Sky, N.K. Jemisim: finished the trilogy. What a great world, and the ending is just fantastic. A rare book written in the 2nd person.👌🏼
The Incredibles: rewatched recently. What a great film. Very excited for the sequel.
Ella Enchanted: needed a light movie to end a day. This did that, but wow, it is of a time. A few good bits, but I swore it was a late 90s movie.
Monsters vs. Aliens: silly, simple. I remembered it being better the first time. Didn’t hold up over time.
Final Space: a space action-comedy. Starts light hearted, and develops a good story and world. Season 1 just finished.
Adventure Pals: a fun platformer. Nothing deep, but a lot of fun.
I’ll Be Your Girl (iTunes): The Decemberists’ latest album is fantastic. They’ve clearly made a shift with their previous album, and this one continues that with a bit more synth. It’s been on heavy rotation since it came out two days ago.
Horizon: Zero Dawn: a very interesting combination of gameplay. You are generally underpowered, making you think more, but it isn’t an extreme stealth game. Very enjoyable.
Thor: Ragnorak: great visuals, best of the Thor films, and really funny.
Coco: 😭😭😭. Wow, Pixar did an amazing job on this film.
The Good Place, season 2: continues to be fun, and clever with their shift in formula.
Serenity Rose: a reread of an old series I have on the shelf. A fun world, and good characters.
The Secret History of Mac Gaming: I supported this on Unbound, and just received it. A wonderful trip down memory lane, with many details I had no idea about. Bolo forever!
I need to get back to my reading list (as always). Destiny 2’s next expansion will hit soon and I’ll likely shift back to that.
A campaign video for one of Wisconsin’s candidates for governor, with a cute baby who gets hungry. Mom (the candidate) continues the shoot while feeding the baby. Made me smile, as this really is life with a baby.
Daniel Jalkut has a post on some of the currently hidden metrics you can track in Xcode’s built in performance testing. Very interesting stuff. I wonder why it hasn’t been exposed yet, as this method is a few years old now. Reliability issues? In any case, a fun thing to play with.
A little web game that is solitaire battleship. Fun, just hard enough. Fills the little moments well.