I wanted to get in a post before the end of the year, just so's I could tell 2009 that it was NOT appreciated, will NOT be celebrated, and can now slink off into the ether of shitty years. Much to my surprise, this is the end of a decade. Zounds!! That means Best Of lists, which I have enclosed forthwith. And also the end of the Tennant-era Doctor Who, which will be discussed after I've seen both episodes, which will take place in the new year, which will be miles better than the old one.
Firstly, Johnny says:
Firstly, I wasn't trying to be obstreperous, I was trying to be recalcitrant. Secondly, I was drunk. Far as Dollhouse is concerned, I guess it was just too wheadony for me. If saying so makes me a Joss hating troll, I guess I'll wear the cap. Let's see what half-baked concept of his gets produced next, while tons of great ideas never make it to the little screen. Shoot, one of those ideas might actually be yours...
I didn't know you were drunk. That makes all the difference! Based on the past four or six hours of Dollhouse (Fox is duly burning it the fuck off), it becomes even clearer how interference fucked with it. Dollhouse as a very serialized drama is rocking pretty seriously. But it's not the type of show that can be sustained. Now that Whedon seems to have given up on that, the show's much more relaxed and a hell of a lot more fun. The end of the last episode on Friday was pure, undiluted Joss Whedon and I loved it. The show fails when it tries to be a normal TeeVee show, but it's quite good when it stops that nonsense. If Whedon staying off of TeeVee meant I could get on it, I'd be all for that. But alas...
And to Cairmen, who pimps Charles Stross:
Yes, he got my back up. It's the same kind of tired bullshit that makes people NOT read or watch science fiction. I'm not going to criticize his writing because I haven't read it, and he was on my list before he became irritating. I'll check him out at some point. Promise.
Now I have some Best Of lists, because why not?
25 Awesome Movies:
A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE
A VERY LONG ENGAGEMENT
CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON
ETERNAL SUNSHINE OF THE SPOTLESS MIND
LORD OF THE RINGS
THE NEW WORLD
NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN
SHAUN OF THE DEAD
THERE WILL BE BLOOD
If I had to pick a favorite, it would be "Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon." It had everything I love in a movie and it was one of the rare films that actually transported me to another place. See how I have some fun stuff on my list? You can do that. It's okay. Fun movies take a certain amount of talent to make, too. NOTE TO THE ACADEMY -- Recognize fun movies, you motards. Then maybe the world won't think of you as stuffy asshats. Awards season is now a depressing slog through dreary, too-serious dramas. Movies don't have to be brussels sprouts, people.
25 Grand TeeVee Shows:
THE OFFICE (UK VERSION)
THE SARAH CONNOR CHRONICLES
THE VENTURE BROTHERS
THE WEST WING
Obviously, my favorite TeeVee show of the decade was Mad Men. My top four are actually pretty clear: Mad Men, Doctor Who, The West Wing, Breaking Bad. What worked about TeeVee in the past decade was the versatility. SO many different types of shows, including some genre shows that were able to incorporate so many different elements. Let's see if we can get audiences to watch these shows now...
25 Masterful Records, which I will actually do in order:
1. PURE REASON REVOLUTION – THE DARK THIRD (2006)
2. U2 – HOW TO DISMANTLE AN ATOMIC BOMB (2004)
3. DOVES – LOST SOULS (2000)
4. MUSE – ABSOLUTION (2003)
5. OASIS – DON’T BELIEVE THE TRUTH (2005)
6. U2 – ALL THAT YOU CAN’T LEAVE BEHIND (2000)
7. HAL – HAL (2005)
8. COLDPLAY – PARACHUTES (2000)
9. SOUNDTRACK OF OUR LIVES – BEHIND THE MUSIC (2001)
10. THE FRATELLIS – COSTELLO MUSIC (2006)
11. COLDPLAY – A RUSH OF BLOOD TO THE HEAD (2004)
12. U2 – NO LINE ON THE HORIZON (2009)
13. THE VEILS – RUNAWAY FOUND (2004)
14. HEIST – A SHOPKEEPER WILL NOT APPEAR (2004)
15. THE VIEW – HATS OFF TO THE BUSKERS (2007)
16. TRAVIS – THE INVISIBLE BAND (2001)
17. ELBOW – ASLEEP IN THE BACK (2001)
18. FRANK TURNER – LOVE, IRE AND SONG
19. HOPE OF THE STATES – THE LOST RIOTS (2004)
20. THE LIBERTINES – UP THE BRACKET (2002)
21. SNOW PATROL – FINAL STRAW (2003)
22. MUSE – BLACK HOLES AND REVELATIONS (2006)
23. RADIOHEAD – HAIL TO THE THIEF (2004)
24. THE CORAL – THE CORAL (2002)
25. THE STANDS – ALL YEARS LEAVING (2004)
Not a bad decade for music. Not great, but not bad. Nothing truly transcendent but there's just so much music available that it's not too surprising one album didn't take off. I still can't figure out what people had against U2's "How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb," because that album just gets better with repeated listening, while the weak second half of "All That You Can't Leave Behind" does not. Most of you probably haven't heard my top selection. Pure Reason Revolution is a British prog rock band and I LURVE them. This is one of those records that just stuck with me. I still listen to it all the damned time. Second album not quite as gripping as the first, but I love what they're doing.
So there you have it. Ten years boiled down into lists, which we all love because lists are fun. I want to thank all of you, gentle readers, for sticking with me through 2009. A big thanks as well to the folks at backtofrankblack.com, who did a whole "Midnight of the Century" thing and support good TeeVee. I'll see y'all in 2010, unless I decide to do a post next week. Hey, you never know...
np -- Pure Reason Revolution, of course!!