• James Hewlett

Best Of's 2018


I normally do more end of year best of posts but this year I’m combining it all into one end of year wrap up.

I might talk about a couple of things, or just highlight one from each category.

I’ve not put enough thought into anything to definitively say that these are my favourites of the year, but there’s a good chance they’re up there.

Oh yeah, so before I dive into the categories I wanted to mention that Ed, bless him, came down again yesterday evening and we hung out. He’s been awesome this week.

Today I packed up all the xmas stuff. It felt really early and I did get a look from someone when I dumped the tree at the side of the road but I just wanted to move past it and have it all tied away.

I also have had to skip working out today, I wanted to but I did laundry earlier today and washed every towel in the house and they’re not dry yet… yeah, I know I could just be smelly and not bother showering afterward, but it just feels gross not doing that so I’m going to put in double tomorrow to make up for it.

Okay, on with the actual post. Let’s come up with some categories.

Movies.

I didn’t see as much in theatres this year, actually because I’ve only been going to the Showcase I can see exactly what I saw by looking back through my old bookings. Jeeeeze, only seven movies at the cinema this year.

The best of the bunch was absolutely Mission: Impossible Fallout. Put aside scientology if you can, Tom Cruise is a god damn movie star. Maybe it’s because of his whacked out beliefs but the man is certifiably crazy but on screen it is in all the best ways. Ya know what, I actually want to finish up this post quickly now and watch this movie again tonight. How amazing is it that A, this film franchise is twenty two years old now and B, this is the…. seventh instalment and is the best one.

TV Shows.

There was quite a lot of good TV this year, the end of Rebels, the start of The Dragon Prince, the newest season of Sunny, The Expanse, Westworld. I could talk about any of them but I’ve got two stand outs.

Atypical - Netflix original about an eighteen year old high school boy on the autism spectrum and his family. I mentioned it in the posts I wrote specifically about the show but I enjoy the rest of the family more than I enjoy the main kids story but it is really well done all round.

I don’t know anyone on the spectrum personally so I don’t know how accurate a portrayal it is, but it feels authentic and genuine.

The Good Place - Quite possibly the best show on television and probably the only basic network show worth a damn anymore. Kristen Bell, Ted Danson and co. deliver a wickedly smart and funny episode every single time. Michael Schurr is the show runner and also responsible, at least partly, for The Office (US), Brooklyn Nine-Nine and Parks & Rec, so he has some quality behind him. Every season I wonder how they’ll continue on and if it would be better off if they ended on a high rather than try and top themselves again but they continue to do just that so I have all faith they’ll be amazing again in the fourth season later next year.

I won’t say anything about the current third season as the discoveries you make getting there are amazing but the premise of the show from the start is that Elenor Shelstrop (Bell) arrives in ‘The Good Place’ after an untimely death, but secretly knows that there as been a mix up and she is actually meant to be in ‘The Bad Place.’ She makes some friends and is trying to better herself post mortally in order to earn her place…. Hilarity, hijinx and surprises occur and well just watch the forking show.

Video Games.

I mean, it’s Red Dead Redemption 2 isn’t it. Do I need to say any more?

Board Games.

This is a toughy as Gloomhaven still exists and I can’t see anything ever beating it for ‘Best Game.’

Playing that always feels like a special occasion and if we have a game planned I look forward to it all week.

Charterstone took up a lot of our table time for the first half of the year. Loved playing through that and would like to do it again with a full group of six to see how differently it plays.

Pandemic Legacy Season 2 I don’t need to talk about any more than I already have. We’ve got our ‘December’ game or games left to play and then that one is finished.

Star Wars Legion isn’t strictly a board game and god knows I’ve not been able to ‘play’ it as much as I’d like to but I’ve enjoyed the hell out the hobby side of it. If it wasn’t a Saturday in December during school holidays I would have actually probably popped into town and picked up a new expansion today so I could paint up some Wookiee’s.

Stuffed Fables might have had a shot had we had enough time to get it to the table more than twice.

So yeah, I don’t think there is one stand out that I’ve not already talked about to death. Gloomhaven, now and always, best game.

Night Out.

First night of RTX when we went and played boozy put-put, hit up a few bars in Shoreditch and ate barbecue. That’s the most memorable fun night out of the year I think.

Music.

See yesterdays post, I wrote solely about music there.

Gig.

I went to a few great gigs this year, BNL, Beck, Gambino was pushed until March so still have that coming, but the Less Than Jake/Reel Big Fish co-headline show might have been the most fun.

Oh wait, you know what, the wrestling shows that I’ve been to have more of a gig vibe than a sports event so I’m going to say Rev Pro, just in general between the London and Portsmouth shows I went to they were all awesome for different reasons.

Sporting Event.

I was super proud of Sara’s running this year and watching some local American Football was really fun over the summer but the Indianapolis Colts coming back after a few down years has been amazing to watch. I feel great about where the team is at going forward for the next season or two.

That and the Johnny Gargano/Tomasso Ciampa feud in NXT.

I think that’s all. I’m grasping trying to think of more categories so I’m going to end it there. See you tomorrow for a look into the future… Great Scott!

#bestof #annual #endofyear #media #movies #tvshows #videogames #boardgames #music #hobbies #sport #indiewrestling #wrestling #nightlife #livemusic #friends

©2017 by James Hewlett.