Essays, Not Rants! 301: 2017 In Review
2017 has been a year. And it ends in a couple days, so that means it’s time for me to phone it in and post about posts!
Five Most Popular/Viewed Posts
#5: Hanging Out
You know that thing where you talk about fictional characters as if they were your actual real life friends? This post is about how really well crafted characters make you happy just to watch them interact.
It’s nice to be able to shut off your brain when you watch a movie or read a book, insofar as that means you don’t overthink it. But part of that means trusting the storyteller that everything will make sense. Dunkirk and Star Wars are movies that if you stop asking why and enjoy it then, dang, they’re great.
#3: Let The Past Die
Woah, this one got hits quick. Or maybe my blog’s just not as busy as it used to be. Either way. The Last Jedi is a rich movie (which you gotta admit, even if you'd didn’t like it) and this is me getting into some of its layers. There’s more I wanna unpack which I may go on about in due time (consider Rian Johnson’s use of fakeouts and a twisty plot in light of Luke’s admonition that this isn’t going to go the way you think).
#1 (tie!): So My Apartment Building Caught Fire
Well. This was a blogpost born out of an unexpected adventure. This is me talking about one of the reasons I love living in New York.
Stories are important. Science Fiction is important. And sometimes the real world sucks (that this was posted in January 2017 definitely has nothing to do with the post, cough), and sometimes stories remind you that, hey, there is good. And that through it you can learn something.
Stories are important.
Josh’s Pick of Three
I love character creators. I spend way too long in The Sims’ Create-A-Sim and love agonizing over my character in games that let me design my avatar. But as someone who’s neither entirely white nor entirely Chinese, it’s hard to recreate myself when many presets are decidedly one or the other. Maybe if more of us were represented in stories I might be able to make a half-Asian commander Shepard.
This blog is guaranteed to be the only place you’ll find indie darling Lady Bird and Hideo Kojima helmed video game Death Stranding spoken about in relation. But they’re similar! Read this to see me making a weird connection that actually makes an amount of sense.
Another post that Definitely Has Nothing To Do With The Date It Was Posted. I love multinational teams, and I love how U.S. Avengers uses such a team to redefine the idea of an American. It’s a team of immigrants, minorities, and a homegrown, corn-fed Kentuckian. It’s truly a special comic. And there’s something wonderful about seeing the Finnish-Norwegian Aikku be comforted by her girlfriend about the oddness of America.
And so 2017 draws to a close. Thanks for reading folks, and I dearly hope you keep doing so. 2018’s gonna be wild and I’m still gonna be here ranting about whatever the ###### I want. Which, given that we’re seeing Black Panther, Pacific Rim: Uprising, and the new Tomb Raider movie come out, probably means more of the same.