@forcesofgeek | Blitztastic.com
Best Movies: Kingsman: The Secret Service, Adult Beginners, Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, Dope, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, What We Do in The Shadows
Best TV Shows: The Flash, Limitless, Supergirl, Jessica Jones, Better Call Saul, New Girl
Best Books (fiction): Hyde by Daniel Levine
Best Books (non-fiction): Refelections: An Oral History of Twin Peaks by Brad Dukes, Modern Horrors: An A to Z of Horror Movie Reviews by Scott Weinberg
Best Songs: Adelle – “Hello”, Carly Rae Jepsen – “I Really Like You”
Best Albums: Dope OST, Carly Rae Jepsen – E•MO•TION
Best Music Video: Bad Blood, Taylor Swift,
Best Comic Books / Graphic Novels: Superman: American Alien (Max Landis & Various) Batman (Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo), COPRA (Michel Fiffe), The Hero (David Rubin), Marvel Masterworks: Not Brand Echh (Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, Gene Colan, Marie Severin)
Best Blu-ray/DVD Release: The X-Files: The Complete Series, Fright Night Blu-ray: 30th Anniversary Special Edition
Most overrated thing about 2015? Mad Max Fury Road, Jurassic World, the Star Wars hype machine
Most underrated thing about 2015? kindness
Thing that you were most excited about in 2015? My mother and sister both beating breast cancer, the return of Chewbacca to the silver screen
Thing that disappointed you most in 2015? The final season of The League, Late Night With Stephen Colbert, the universal hatred of the otherwise mediocre Fantastic Four, the continuing issues with shootings, gun control,terrorism and the militarization of police, and Letterman retiring.
Thing that you’re most looking forward to in 2016? Lots of pop culture: The Monkees on Blu-ray, the return of Mulder and Scully, Spider-Man in the MCU, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, and the inevitable Netflix relaunch of King of Queens and I’m cautiously optimistic about DC’s upcoming cinematic releases.
Best Movies: Avengers: Age of Ultron, Kingsman: The Secret Service, Minions, Stripped – The Comics Documentary, Very Semi-Serious: A Partially Thorough Portrait of New Yorker Cartoonists, Mad Max: Fury Road
Best TV Shows: Mock the Week, QI, Big Fat Quiz of the Year, Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Doctor Who
Best Books (fiction): The Southern Reach trilogy by Jeff VanderMeer, Yesterday’s Kin by Nancy Kress, The Madonna and the Starship by James Morrow, Stories for Chip: A Tribute to Samuel R. Delany.
Best Books (non-fiction): You’re Never Weird on the Internet (Almost) by Felicia Day, The Nerdist Way by Chris Hardwick, Wonderbook: The Illustrated Guide to Creating Imaginative Fiction by Jeff VanderMeer
Best Songs: I’m almost 49. You think I listen to new music?
Best Albums: Hardcore Devo Live
Best Music Video: Hardcore Devo Live (concert film)
Best Comic Books / Graphic Novels: Girl Genius, Looking For Group
Most overrated thing about 2015? Sad Puppies III
Most underrated thing about 2015? Bernie Sanders.
Thing that you were most excited about in 2015? Star Wars
Thing that disappointed you most in 2015? Sad Puppies, Republicans
Thing that you’re most looking forward to in 2016? President Bernie Sanders, seeing more movies in theaters, painting more, going to more conventions, and Secret Project A-ko (sshh… it’s a secret, for now)
FOG! Contributor / Writer, Narcopolis: Continuum
Best Movies: Inside Out, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Ex Machina, Mad Max: Fury Road, The Hateful Eight, The Martian, The Peanuts Movie
Best TV Shows: Daredevil, Black Mirror, Sherlock, Last Week Tonight with John Oliver
Best Comic Books / Graphic Novels: The Fade Out, Saga, Symmetry, Batman, Wayward, Black Jack Ketchum, Mutanimals
Thing that you were most excited for in 2015: Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Thing that disappointed you most in 2015: RIP Scott Weiland
Thing that you’re most looking forward to in 2016: Star Wars: Rogue One, X-Files, Twin Peaks, Batman v Superman, Captain America: Civil War
Best Movie: Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Best TV Show: Cancer: The Emperor of All Maladies (PBS)
Best Book (fiction): The Marvels (Brian Selznick)
Best Song: Fight Song (Rachel Platten); As the parent of a child battling cancer, this really speaks to me.
Best Comic Books / Graphic Novels: The Marvels (Brian Selznick); Yes, it counts twice. Selznick is like that
Most overrated thing about 2015? Deflategate, Donald Trump
Most underrated thing about 2015? The Paris Climate Conference
Thing that you were most excited about in 2015? Visiting Santa’s Village with my family
Thing that disappointed you most in 2015? That the two major party frontrunners were an egomaniacal blowhard with tendency say the most outrageous things and still get away with it, and a long-time scandal magnet with a pathological inability to go a fortnight without some other piece of dirty laundry coming to light.
Thing that you’re most looking forward to in 2016? My son’s final chemotherapy is due in the Spring. Suffice it to say, it’s a wee bit more important than popular culture.
Best Movies: The Hateful Eight (70mm Roadshow Version), What We Do In The Shadows, It Follows, White God, Turbo Kid, Krampus
Best Blu-ray/DVD Release: Digging Up The Marrow, Ghosthouse / Witchery, The Beyond (3 Disc Collectors Edition), Neon Maniacs, Society Corruption (with Last House On Dead End Street Easter Egg)
Thing that you’re most looking forward to in 2016? Green Room (2015) Directed by Jeremy Saulnier, the potential return of Adam Green’s series Holliston
Best Movies: The Martian, The Force Awakens, What We Do In The Shadows, Mr. Holmes
Best TV Shows: Fargo, The Blacklist, Brooklyn Nine-Nine
Best Comic Books: Buffy, Season 10
Most Overrated Thing About 2015? The Walking Dead
Most Underrated Thing About 2015? Rational discussions about politics
Thing I’m Most Looking Forward To In 2016? Being done with school
Best Movies: Anomolisa, The Revenant, Room, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Inside Out, Peace Officer
Best TV Shows: Daredevil!!!!
Best Albums: Julien Baker: Sprained Ankle, Natalie Prass: Natalie Prass, Blur: The Magic Whip
Joanna Newsom: Divers, Titus Andronicus: The Most Lamentable Tragedy, Colleen Green: I Want To Grow Up
Thing that you were most excited about in 2015? The Avengers: Age Of Ultron, Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Thing that disappointed you most in 2015? The Avengers: Age Of Ultron – It wasn’t terrible. Still fun. Just a place filler.
Thing that you’re most looking forward to in 2016? If it’s gonna be as good as The Force Awakens: MORE STAR WARS!!! Also, Captain America: Civil War.
Filmmaker / Comic Book Writer & Artist
2015 was a great year all round. There is a feeling of change and growth in the air.
Best Movie: It’s hard to get to the theaters these days. I’ve got little tiny kids that are too young to sit in front of a giant screen and too wild to leave alone with my wife. And my workload is intense, so it’s got to be a real THING to get me out to a theatre. And the thing of 2015 was Mad Max: Fury Road. This was the movie event of the year. Pure cinema. A director in his 70’s, kicking the ass of every other action director in the room. If there was a director death match– and I hope there will be– George Miller would be the last man standing. Fuck, this guy is good.
Best TV Shows: After focusing on feature films and comicbooks, 2015 was the year I started directing some television, like actual episodic work. I wasn’t sure what to expect, dropping in like a Green Beret and driving a pre-built machine into enemy territory. But it turned out to be so much fun I’m directing another series in a month or so. It is no coincidence that TV is what we look forward to most right now at home. There is a saying, that 90 % of everything is shit. But that means 10% of is not shit. And the more shit people make, the more good things can also be generated as a result. And there is soooo much television right now. That’s the real reason for the “golden age” of TV as it’s been dubbed. Quantity creates quality. Quality is the ‘side effect’ of quantity. And watching the boundaries between TV, film and Netflix melt away is so damn interesting right now. How much longer will we be able to keep TV and Movies in separate categories? My favorite shows of the year include; Daredevil, The Walking Dead, Homeland and Game Of Thrones. Don’t be too surprised if I get more involved with a show of my own at some point. I tend to lean into whatever excites me.
Best Books: Books used to be the main source of knowledge for our society. Now it’s wikipedia. But there is something beyond ‘holding a thing in your hands’ that still gives books power. It’s supporting peoples endeavors. You can listen to the renegade Graham Hancock talk about ancient monolithic structures not officially recoginized by mainstream science on Joe Rogan’s podcast– but you can also buy his awesome new book, Magicians Of The Gods, with cold hard cash and help fund his next expedition. Other favorites of the year include; Oeuvre – Drew Struzan, The Art Of He-Man, and The Paintings Of J. Allen St. John.
Best Podcasts: Speaking of podcasting– this new art form is something I enjoy when I am inking new pages on my new comicbook Renato Jones: The ONE% (coming this spring from Image Comics!). I devour them the way I used to devour commentaries on my DVD collection. I feel a biological NEED to access knowledge while making art. Like I have to keep the right brain busy learning while the left brain is creating. Some of my favorites of the year include; StarTalk Radio, Joe Rogan Experience, ScriptNotes, FXGuide, Word Balloon and Orbital in Conversation. But there are simply too many podcasts I listen to, to list properly. The best thing about this age of podcasting is that there is relatively little money in it. It’s fueled by passion and the experience is not a corporate one. It’s real opinions, real knowledge, real content. Can’t get enough.
Best Video Games: Halo 5. ‘Nuff said.
Best Songs: The song I can not get out of my head right now is Flesh Without Blood by Grimes. It’s poppy, quirky and hypnotic. That song is pure amaze.
Best Albums: Grimes’ Art Angels takes it. The first three songs are a deadly combination (minus the weird intro) and I have played the bejeezus out of this album. Picked it up when I was in preproduction on a TV episode and spent most of my time making shot lists and storyboarding to Grimes.
Best Music Video: Well… not Flesh Without Blood. That’s for damn sure. It was quite jarring to see a song I love so much brought down so hard by blandness. Grimes, call me. We can do better.
Best Comicbooks / Graphic Novels: My favorite of 2015 was written, pencilled, inked and colored all by my favorite creator… okay, okay, why am I not allowed to put my own work on my Best Of list? Iron Fist: The Living Weapon was a personal milestone for me. I had never written/pencilled/inked/colored anything close to 12 issues in a row before. And actually… it has never been done before in a Marvel comic. Like, not once in 50 years. And with how compartmentalized the comic book industry has become, it’s all the rarer. To do all the jobs myself really gave me the hunger to try my hand at a creator owned book next. So this summer I took the leap and I’ve been busily toiling away on Renato Jones: The ONE%, out in spring from Image Comics. It’s going to make some people crazy! It’s an action-adventure epic that is sure to stir up some trouble!
Best Blu-ray/DVD Release: The days of super-Blu-rays chocked full of 100 hours of behind the scenes seems to be vanishing. But there are still some pretty cool releases, like Raven Banner’s release of Turbo Kid!
Thing that disappointed me most in 2015: Watching the 1% get richer and the middle class get poorer. This was a big bummer. Up here in Canada, we elected Justin Trudeau and we’ll have our best shot at seeing if politics can help sort this mess out. But man… to see that gap between the haves and the have nots grow so quickly was not only alarming but saddening. This will be a big challenge to address in the next few years and I’m very interested in how the US will respond to this very real crisis.
Thing I’m most looking forward to in 2016: Can I say it again? My very first creator owned comic book– Renato Jones: The ONE%. It’s everything I have, poured onto a page and fueled by rage. And it’s hunting for compensation!
Best Movies: Hard to Be a God, The Duke of Burgundy, Son of Saul, Macbeth, Goodnight Mommy
Best Books (non-fiction): Nicolas Winding Refn’s The Art of Seeing, Last Gasp’s Beyond the Dark Veil
Best Music Video: David Bowie: Blackstar
Best Blu-ray/DVD Release: The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Miss Osborne
Most overrated thing about 2015? Mad Max: Fury Road
Thing that disappointed you most in 2015? Mad Max: Fury Road
Thing that you’re most looking forward to in 2016? Philip Grandrieux’s Malgré la nuit
Best Movies: The Martian, Creed
Best TV Shows: Fargo, Doctor Who, Ultimate Spider-Man: Web Warriors (gotta plug my show)
Best Books (fiction): Scratch9: Cat Of Nine Worlds
Best Books (non-fiction): Andre The Giant: Closer To Heaven
Best Video Game: Call Of Duty: Black Ops III
Best Songs: Little Big Town’s “Girl Crush” and Keith Urban’s “John Cougar, John Deere, & John 3:16″
Best Albums: Dwight Yoakam’s Second Hand Heart
Best Music Video: Tim McGraw Damn Country Music
Best Comic Books / Graphic Novels: Miami Vice Remix
Best Blu-ray/DVD Release: Pixar’s Inside Out
Most overrated thing about 2015? Star Wars!
Most underrated thing about 2015? Star Wars!
Thing that you were most excited about in 2015? National Park trips! And getting to work with IDW and a ton of super-awesome creatives making comics this past year as well as all the fine folks over on the Ultimate Spider-Man animated series crew!
Thing that disappointed you most in 2015? Los Angeles traffic.
Thing that you’re most looking forward to in 2016? The Con Man Spectrum comic I’m editing for Nathan Fillion, Alan Tudyk, and PJ Haarsma that’s out on Free Comic Book Day from Automatic Publishing!