Monday, June 01, 2015

Monthly Update - May 2015


1. Read books. Still at 10 books for the year so far. But I didn't read any this month. I bought a couple more, though. I'm sure I'll get some reading done on my June vacation, at least.

2. Watch all the TV & movies I have saved. Finally got the DVR mostly clear and started watching some DVDs and Blurays. Got around to re-watching Brooklyn Nine-Nine Season One and started in on Community Season Five. I also bought and re-watched You're The Worst Season One... does that count? I think it might count against me since I bought something despite having a huge stack of Blurays already.

3. Buy no more than six videogames this year. No videogames this month... still haven't played Evolve.

4. 24 More Boardgames. I went ahead and doubled this from last year's goal, since I cleared 12 new games in four months. This month, I played a new party game, Cinelinks, plus Roll for the Galaxy, the DC Deck-Building Game, Epic Spell WarsDixit, Bang!, and Castles of Mad King Ludwig, bringing my total to 21 games for the year. I also played Cards Against Humanity and Superfight more than once.

5. Get below 190 lbs. Last month was between 198-205 lbs. This month I finally dragged the elliptical out of storage and started using it, albeit irregularly, and settled in around 203 lbs.

6. Travel - Nothing until June, probably. I looked into Dallas Fan Days, but there's other stuff going on that weekend. Ditto Heroes Con, which is just too close to the Disney trip and our All-Ages event to be logistically possible, even if I could easily swing the budget. I'm also starting to consider GenCon at the end of July, but don't know feasible that is either.

7. Eat! -  I got out to Twisted Root Burgers and will definitely visit that again. Four I want to revisit: Perry's Steakhouse, Estancia Churrascaria, Sawyer & Co. and Texas Chili Parlor (probably not until colder weather) and 3 new ones: Porter Gastropub, Shake Shack in The Domain (whenever that opens), Voodoo Donuts on 6th in June (if it opens on time).

8. Cook! - Mostly grilling this month. I need to get back to doing a little more cooking, but there was a lot of going out in May and there will probably be quite a bit in June. I did make the alfredo chicken ziti, chicken parmesan and chicken with mushrooms again.

9. NaNoWriMo - No progress this month, and I'm starting to reconsider whether I want to devote a whole month to it or not.


Best Week of Comics This Month:
May 13th (Birthright, Darth Vader, Harrow County, Howard the Duck, Ms. Marvel, Saga, Secret Wars, Silk, Spider-Man 2099, Storm)

Top Five Favorite Comics This Month:
  1. Howard the Duck #3
  2. Spider-Woman #7
  3. Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #5
  4. Fight Club 2 #1
  5. Afterlife with Archie #8
                                              Comics I Read This Month:
                                              • A-Force #1
                                              • Afterlife with Archie #8
                                              • Amazing Spider-Man #18
                                              • Ant-Man #5
                                              • Birthright #7
                                              • Chew #49
                                              • Chrononauts #3
                                              • Copperhead #7
                                              • Daredevil #15.1
                                              • Darth Vader #5
                                              • Descender #3
                                              • Fight Club 2 #1
                                              • Harrow County #1
                                              • Howard the Duck #3
                                              • Inferno #1
                                              • Infinity Gauntlet #1
                                              • Insufferable #1
                                              • Kaijumax #2
                                              • Kanan Last Padawan #2
                                              • Lantern City #1
                                              • Mad Max Fury Road Nux & Immortan Joe #1
                                              • Master of Kung Fu #1
                                              • MODOK: Assassin #1
                                              • Ms. Marvel #15
                                              • Planet Hulk #1
                                              • Punisher #18
                                              • Saga #28
                                              • Secret Wars #1-2
                                              • Secret Wars 2099 #1
                                              • Secret Wars Battleworld #1
                                              • Secret Wars Journal #1
                                              • SHIELD #6
                                              • Silk #4
                                              • Spider-Gwen #4
                                              • Spider-Man 2099 #12
                                              • Spider-Verse #1
                                              • Spider-Woman #7
                                              • Star Wars #5
                                              • Storm #11
                                              • Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #5
                                              • Uncanny Avengers Ultron Forever #1
                                              • Usagi Yojimbo #145
                                              • Wayward #8
                                              Graphic Novels I Read This Month
                                              • Sixth Gun Vol 2 HC
                                              • Bone Vol 1 HC Tribute Edition
                                              • Usagi Yojimbo Senso HC
                                              • D&D Legends of Baldur's Gate
                                              • Y The Last Man Vols 1-10 (Reread)
                                              • Bloodshot Vol 1 HC
                                              • Velvet Vol 2 TP

                                              TV I Watched This Month:
                                              This is mostly for me so I can keep better track of favorite moments, best and worst episodes and do a little less homework in prepping for my "Best of the Year" list next year.
                                              • Game of Thrones "Sons of the Harpy" (A fantastic fight sequence with the Sons of the Harpy vs. Barristan and Grayworm, an interesting fight scene with Jaime, Bronn and some Dornish soldiers, the introduction of the Sand Snakes, maneuvering around Loras Tyrell and the Faith Militant and a nice scene between Sansa and Littlefinger) "Kill the Boy" (Every season, there's one of these piece mover episodes; important, but dull compared to everything surrounding it; this checks in with a lot of the less interesting connective tissue of the series, following impending marriages of Sansa and Daenerys, more doings with the Wildlings, Stannis moving on from the Wall, etc. - a short fight scene at the end with stone men was a little lacking compared to all that's gone before) "Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken" (While I'm not willing to swear off the show based on it, I did think that it was unimaginative to put Sansa right back into the status quo she was in with Joffrey, having learned nothing. But I love everything in Dorne, and I'm loving to hate Cersei and the Faith Militant as they push around the Tyrells, who are probably the most legitimately good people in the show. Also... Diana Rigg is back!) "The Gift" (That long-awaited Daenerys/Tyrion meeting was big, but there were a lot of good moments in this great episode. Ghost returns. Cersei finally faces the inevitable with the sparrows. A horrific possibility is dangled before Stannis, and for all the character work they've done on him, if he goes through with burning his daughter, it'll be hard to ever root for him again. Oh, and it turns out Bronn and the Sand Snakes are more interesting facing off in prison than on the battlefield.) "Hardhome" (I thought that Tyrion and Daenerys meeting for the first time was going to be the biggest thing in this episode, and the biggest thing we'd yet seen that hasn't been in the books. Nope. That final battle was pretty epic. And try as I might, I can't feel bad for Cersei's predicament. Jamie has been redeemed somewhat, but Cersei is the worst and has caused so much misery that I actually feel she deserves this and more. Oh, and Arya finally goes outside again! Yay!)
                                              • Mad Men "Lost Horizon" (Peggy rattling around SC&P, another ghost Burt appearance, Don feeling like a third wheel and pulling a disappearing act, Roger & Peggy skating and playing the organ, Don's secretary fitting in, Joan very much not... everyone we love is struggling, the minor characters are thriving... it's a weird mirror of most final seasons) "The Milk and Honey Route" (Pete gets a great job and his family back, Betty gets cancer, Don spends an entire episode in a hotel in the middle of nowhere... what is happening? This is a bizarre choice for the penultimate hour of Mad Men) "Person to Person" (Not at all what I would have predicted, but really satisfying, especially in the Peggy-Stan moment that I did not see coming.)
                                              • Silicon Valley "The Lady" (I love the new addition to the company, but I'm already finding Russ more annoying than entertaining, and I don't care about Jian-Yang either. Still funny, but more uneven than it's been.) "Server Space" (Love seeing Andy Daly, and I love Erlich being afraid to lose his buddies to the outside world, I'm a sucker for a cheap monkey/cybernetics/masturbation joke, and Jared's night-German was hilarious) "Homicide" (The Dinesh/Gilfoyle "Let Blaine Die" chart was almost as spectacular as the extended dick joke that closed out last season, and has the beautiful payoff of Blaine discovering the board. The rest of the episode was just icing on the cake.) "Adult Content" (If all this episode gave us was the gloriously filthy names of various porn companies, I'd have been happy with this episode. But they also gave us Dinesh's doomed love life and Monica not wanting to be in the room for a meeting, and was a really fun episode.) "White Hat/Black Hat" (Kind of a frustrating episode, with various sitcom misunderstandings and mishaps. Watching every character fuck up for half an hour wasn't super entertaining.)
                                              • Veep "Tehran" (I love the spiraling from on top to completely fucked that this show does so well. Dan as a lobbyist promises to be really fun, VP Doyle is a lot of fun to watch and Kevin Dunn continues to kill it every time) "Convention" (Amy's epic rant was a thing of beauty, Dan's work in lobbying is hilarious and Hugh Laurie as Tom James makes a killer entrance) "Storms and Pancakes" (Amy as a lobbyist is a lot of fun, Tom James overshadowing Selena is entertaining and the Jonah molesting story, while weird, continues to entertain as well) "Mommy Meyer" (Just a flood of great stuff this episode, including every second of Tom James, the attempt on Selina's life and her stilted evening with her friends and every bit of Amy and Dan lobbying. To be honest, I kind of want a lobbyist spin-off now.) "B/ill" (Unlike Silicon Valley, watching these guys fuck up is particularly hilarious to me, and watching Dan & Amy run counter to Jonah & Richard was really fun.)
                                              • Agents of SHIELD "Scars" (Got my wish for a larger, more cohesive SHIELD, albeit in a really low-budget way, but I continue to not care at all about the TV version of the Inhumans. Also, they killed off Tripp and now they're getting rid of Mac? There are plenty of cast members to shed, why do they keep losing the most interesting ones? And I hate the waste of Olmos, and have zero interest in seeing the Inhumans vs. SHIELD.) "S.O.S." (There are moments here, most of them involving Mockingbird being a badass, but it's all so... cheap? Boring? Inhumans are a bunch of J. Crew models wearing street clothes and using guns, a really second-rate makeup job for Mr. Hyde and a lot of emotional arcs (like Cal's breakthrough or Agent 33's closure) that I really don't care about. I'll still watch, because it's Marvel Cinematic, but this has been a disappointing second half of what was a promising season early on.)
                                              • iZombie "Dead Air" (The murder of the week was a little on the predictable side, but still fun... but the ongoing mythology stuff, whether it's the zombie rat, Major's delve into darkness, or Liv's boss dating Liv's roommate, were all great.) "Patriot Brains" (The Blaine story is getting really interesting, and I liked Percy Daggs as our murderer, but seeing her zombie boyfriend offed was sad. I don't know where the arc story is going, and I love that.) "Mr. Berzerk" (The arc construction here has been great. Major's story and Blaine's story is one thing, but that Max Rager is tied in was a surprise. And Liv has her first zombie spawn, a psychotic hitman!) "Astroburger" (Lots of great running stories with the arc, I did not see the twist of delusions coming, and even though I'm disappointed that Major hasn't been let in on the truth, the panic on Liv's face when she realized what was happening made it worth it.)
                                              • Flash "Grodd Lives" (A letter perfect version of Grodd, more of Well's sinister agenda and Iris being super-pissed *almost* pays off all the stupid lying to Iris they've been doing. This first season is coming together nicely.) "Rogue Air" (So much awesome. Transporting the metahumans, Cisco inventing a power damper, the Cisco/Glider flirtation, the formation of the Rogues, the formation of the Justice League (sort of), that epic fight, "I might need a favor from you. Wherever, whenever." This is pretty much everything I want from a superhero show.) "Fast Enough" (A great finale. Some questions unanswered, like why they'd let Thawne go, but some real heart-wrenching moments, super-cool superheroics and fun Easter Eggs like the Golden Age Flash's helmet, Rip Hunter's time sphere and a glimpse of the new Hawkgirl.)
                                              • Inside Amy Schumer "12 Angry Men Inside Amy Schumer" (If this doesn't win a comedy Emmy, we shouldn't have comedy Emmys) "I'm Sorry" (The late night talkshow sketch kept getting more and more darkly funny until the, uh... climax. Killer sketch. The scientific sketch was such an amazing send-up of women being trained to be deferential, Pizza World Nights was fun and earns bonus points for Boogie Nights references, and Amy Goes Deep with a Gigolo was hilarious) "Babies and Bustiers" (The weakest episode of the season so far, but still funny. Preteen beauty pageants are a fish in the barrel target, and while adding the Benjamin Button stuff made it weird, it didn't make it that much funnier. The "bakery in Maine" sketch was funny but a similar riff to previous sketches. The woman on the street interviews were my favorite parts of the episode.) "'80s Ladies" (The Universe featuring Bill Nye and the ladies of Broad City!, and a weird '80s runner, complete with Jerry Seinfeld and a disturbing Weird Science riff)
                                              • Arrow "This is Your Sword" (The constant reversals on Oliver being evil or not are ridiculous, since we know the end result, Ra's is a boring villain and the Hong Kong flashbacks are taking way too long to tell a story that isn't that interesting. Looking forward to the spark of life Flash will give this next week, and hoping they've got a much stronger season four in mind.) "My Name is Oliver Queen" (Built on a rocky foundation of nonsensical plot twists, but this still managed to be a pretty solid finale with a lot of fanservice, including the real origin of the Atom, the appearance of Speedy/Red Arrow and of course Felicity in the suit. And a great guest appearance by Flash. I can't get over how bad they missed on Ras Al Ghul, though. And I was really hoping they were gonna close out by calling him Green Arrow.)
                                              • Brooklyn Nine-Nine (Played catch-up with about six episodes, including a strong season finale... it was more uneven this year, but almost always funny, and occasionally great)
                                              • Wayward Pines "Episode One" (I don't know if I'll stick with this or not, it's got some good actors and I'm interested in the mystery, but more from a "I'd like to look it up on Wikipedia and see what the twist is" than "I'd like to watch 9 more episodes" perspective. Would have liked it more as a bingable Netflix show, I think.)
                                              • Community (Caught up on episodes 8-12, which were much stronger, especially the espionage paintball)
                                              • Louie "Bobby's House" (What a weird episode, with Louie in makeup, another painful moment with Pamela and more of Bobby, his shitty brother) "Untitled" (Charles Grodin as the doctor was a great cameo, and I love the Midnight Run callback of "Ya-hey,"then there's this whole bizarre dream sequence thing that perfectly captured dream logic and got funnier the longer it ran) "Sleepover" (The turnaround on kids using phones was a great scene, The return of Pamela wasn't particularly welcome. But the sleepover trip to the police station was a thing of beauty. As was Bobby's tale of how he went to jail.) "The Road, Part One" ("Where's Roger?" "He's dead." JizzyBuns, And the bizarre adventures at the airport were a lot of fun.) "The Road, Part Two" (This season has been particularly strange... and this episode went from fart jokes to a poignant Civil War photo to an emotional breakdown to a death scene to a goofy final scene with his daughter, and it all fit together surprisingly well.)
                                              Top Five Shows This Month:
                                              1. Game of Thrones
                                              2. Veep
                                              3. Flash
                                              4. Inside Amy Schumer
                                              5. Mad Men
                                                    Favorite Last Week with John Oliver Segments This Month:
                                                      Favorite Daily Show Segments This Month:
                                                      Movies I Watched This Month:
                                                      • Avengers Age of Ultron (x2)
                                                      • Up In The Air
                                                      • Pitch Perfect
                                                      • Pitch Perfect 2 (x2)
                                                      • Road Warrior
                                                      • Mad Max Fury Road
                                                      • Mission Impossible 3
                                                      • Mission Impossible Ghost Protocol
                                                      • Tomorrowland
                                                      • Jersey Boys
                                                      Places I Ate This Month:
                                                      • Smashburger
                                                      • Rudy's BBQ
                                                      • Haymaker
                                                      • Popeye's (x3)
                                                      • Kerbey Lane
                                                      • PizzaRev
                                                      • Blind Squirrel
                                                      • Fork + Taco
                                                      • Alamo Drafthouse (x6)
                                                      • Sushi Nini
                                                      • Tarka (x2)
                                                      • BJ's Brewhouse
                                                      • Peached Tortilla
                                                      • Chi'Lantro
                                                      • Twisted Root Burgers
                                                      • Odd Duck
                                                      • Bush's Chicken