This is the latest monthly update to the right column of the blog, updating my favorite comics and TV for the previous month. The listings are alphabetical, not by rank of how much I liked them in comparison. My criteria for what makes the list is when I read them, not necessarily when they were published. This is basically also my own records of what I read/liked for the inevitable "End of Year" lists I feel like making.
There were a couple really slow weeks for comics in September, but a couple really busy ones, and that sort of balanced out into plenty of books that could have made my Top 20. Of course, the number of books I'm super-excited about seems to be down, but there are plenty of solidly enjoyable books, and it may just be that I'm in jaded mode. At any rate, there were 5 DC (including Johnny DC, Wildstorm and Vertigo) books that almost made the cut and 5 Marvel (all pretty much Marvel universe, except for The Stand), and Atomic Robo Dogs of War was just on the outskirts as well. In terms of what did make the top 20, it was 4 DC (one in-continuity, one all-ages, one Wildstorm licensed and one All-Star Superman), 8 Marvel (2 X-Books, 2 DnA space books, 3 Brubaker books, and shockingly, 3 with direct tie-ins to Secret Invasion), 4 Dark Horse, 2 Image and 2 Boom Studios. Honestly, if I had to have only one publisher right now, I think I'd pick Dark Horse... they also cleaned up in my graphic novel list, and they've got a great diversity of product (webcomics, licensed Conan and Star Wars, creator-owned gems like Usagi and Hellboy, etc.) and an enormously talented stable of creators. I decided to add in a "Top 5 of the month" based on my Top 5 lists over on Comic Pants, we'll see if that lasts.
I borrowed the second Song of Ice & Fire novel from a friend, but haven't had time to read it yet... October, perhaps. Instead, I read 9 Star Wars graphic novels this month, as well as a variety of other stuff as it came out. I also played an enormous amount of Rock Band 2.
My TV schedule is filling back up, although I think an increased interest in politics and, of course, the writer's strike, has killed some of my once-fanatical love for the medium. Certainly there's nothing new this season I'm really looking forward to (although I'll check out Christian Slater's "My Own Worst Enemy," which is getting good buzz). However, I won't deny being delighted to have some of my old favorites back. How I Met Your Mother came back with a really strong opener and a solid second episode with the best use of Regis Philbin ever. Chuck has a good opener that many have called great. It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia is probably the best laugh-out-loud show on TV... at the very least, it's tied with The Office and 30 Rock. The Shield... well, I've loved it for so long, I'm mostly sad to see it kind of limping along in its final season, but I have to stick it out and hope for a great finale, even if the series right now is kind of... meh. And Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles has really turned around for me, turning into one of my must-watch shows. It's not perfect (John Connor and his girlfriend are annoying as hell, for instance), but it's pretty good. And The Wire? Well, I'm mid-way through season four and I can't decide if I'm sad it took me so long to get onboard this awesome show or happy because it means there's no waiting, and I can just watch all five seasons straight through as time allows.
In RSS feeds, it's the end of an era as X-Axis switches over to blog format and so I've started reading Paul O'Brien's blog "If Destroyed, Still True." I've also started reading The Stranger blog on politics, mostly for Dan Savage's take on things.
I really need to figure out how to link podcasts, but in the meantime I've gone ahead and also added a list of Podcasts I'm currently listening to to the ever-growing (and probably rarely-read) sidebar of the site. In addition to the stuff previously mentioned, I added the real life story podcast The Moth (which is awesome, especially when guys involved with New York mobsters or cops are talking), The Rachel Maddow show (yep, I love her as much as every other liberal does these days) and NPR's Planet Money (it's a really good podcast on economic issues for the layman).
Also, I was kind of amused to see, looking at my tags, that my blog is becoming increasingly a place for me to rant, a lot of the time about politics. Weekly comics posts are still at the top, with 91, but there are 80 rant tags and 75 politics, and I'll be surprised if politics doesn't hit the top tag before the elections.
After the elections, I'll either be calmer or numb, depending on who wins, so it should go back to either more comics posting or increasingly depressed and angry rants about the slow death of America.