A Few of My New Favorite Entertainment Things

We nerds spend an awful lot of time com­plain­ing about the things we hate (Revolution, any­one?). So, I’m going to run through a list of things I have really enjoyed lately.

In comics, I am cur­rently in love with the works of James Stokoe and Brandon Graham. Stokoe has this amaz­ingly insane style of art, really detailed and com­plex, fea­tured in books like Orc Stain and Godzilla: The Half-​​Century War. I only know Graham so far from his stel­lar work in King City. The two artists couldn’t dif­fer more; where Stokoe goes hyper-​​detailed, Graham is more impres­sion­is­tic, but both love to fill their pan­els with stuff that doesn’t per­tain to the main thrust of the story. Background world stuff that opens up new avenues of imag­i­na­tion; I can’t wait for more. Also worth men­tion­ing is The Manhattan Project by Jonathan Hickman. Basic premise: what if all the Manhattan Project sci­en­tists were evil mad sci­en­tists? It’s not fir­ing on all cylin­ders just yet, but I sus­pect it’s going to go to great places. Nightly News blew my mind when it first hit, another by Hickman, so I will always be will­ing to trust him.

In tele­vi­sion, well, the only show con­sis­tently work­ing for me is New Girl, which isn’t about the tit­u­lar “new girl” much at all, but more about the trio of man-​​children room­mates liv­ing with her. The writ­ing on this show con­sis­tently cracks me up in a way no other sit­com does.

In video games, I’ve had a glut of very enjoy­able games hit lately. I have really enjoyed Guild Wars 2, at least up until I unlocked every­thing cool for my char­ac­ter. Torchlight 2 and Borderlands 2 are equally enter­tain­ing in small doses, both hit­ting that loot sweet-​​spot in a Diablo-​​esque way. It was X-​​COM, how­ever, that really took over my life for a week. I named my squad mem­bers after var­i­ous col­lege class­mates, and kept them all up-​​to-​​date on Facebook as to their fates. Saving the world from alien inva­sion in a turn-​​based man­ner is more fun than it has any right to be.

In film, I pretty much adored Looper. Is it per­fect? I guess not. But sci­ence fic­tion that doesn’t devolve into noth­ing but a long string of action sequences is hard to come by lately.

I’m afraid I haven’t been read­ing nearly enough long-​​form prose lately. I enjoyed the lat­est Sandman Slim book from Richard Kadrey, Devil Said Bang. Also, vN by Madeline Ashby is totally worth a read, espe­cially if you enjoy sto­ries that grap­ple with arti­fi­cial intel­li­gence con­cepts. Finally, The Shadow Year by Jeffrey Ford is one of the best books I have read in years; it is Dandelion Wine for less wist­ful adults.

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