Friday, March 01, 2019

Monthly Update - February 2019

Play At Least 25 New Boardgames (Last Year 75) (0+3=3):
  • Blackout Hong Kong
  • Pandemic Legacy Season 2
  • Dice Throne Season 2
  • Dungeon Mayhem
  • Sagrada
  • The Captain is Dead
My Top Comics This Month:
  1. Daredevil #1-2 - Chip Zdarsky has been known for humor comics, and even his Spider-Man work has had a lighter touch. With Daredevil, he's diving right into the noirish style that the character works best with, as a Matt Murdock dealing with PTSD from near-death, a Kingpin in control of the city, and trying to keep the criminal underworld in check by appearing as Daredevil again. Throw in anti-vigilante detective Detective Cole, a really promising new character, and the best art Marco Checcheto has ever done, and you've got a really great series.
  2. Killmonger #4 - The Killmonger miniseries, rewriting Killmonger's origin a bit by putting him on a black ops squad with mutant members that worked first for the Kingpin and later for SHIELD. It has pretty spectacular art from Juan Ferreyra as well.
  3. Savage Sword of Conan #1-2 - The companion series to Conan by Gerry Duggan and Ron Garney is not quite as good as the main series, but it's got more overt magic, and the same bone-crunching take on Conan as Jason Aaron's series. Where else are you gonna see Conan pick a lock using the finger bones of one of his guards?
  4. Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man #3 - Tom Taylor and Juann Cabal's series continues to be my favorite Spider-Man of the moment. The weirdness of Under York is the perfect kind of thing that works in Marvel comics but would be a hard sell in Marvel movies, and I like creators who can find that balance.
  5. Black Hammer Age of Doom #8 - Still one of the best series on the market, Lemire and Ormston unveil a new status quo in this issue that I'm interested in seeing more of.
  6. Star Trek The Q Conflict #2 - A mashup of four different crews (TOS, TNG, DS9, Voyager) at the behest of four different godlike aliens. Super fun. The kind of thing you could only do in comics, the Secret Wars of Star Trek.
  7. Buffy the Vampire Slayer #2 - Jordie Bellaire and Dan Mora's reinvention of Buffy as if it started in 2019 (Ultimate Buffy the Vampire Slayer?) is pretty fantastic, and this second issue gives us some new along with the old, including a new boyfriend for Buffy's mom, a girlfriend for Willow, a really fun reinterpretation of Cordelia, Spike, Anya, Drusila and the main Scooby Gang.
          Comics I Read This Month ( Last Year 534) (44+57=101):
          • Age of X-Man: Amazing Nightcrawler #1
          • Avengers No Road Home #1-3
          • Black Hammer Age of Doom #8
          • Black Widow #2
          • Buffy the Vampire Slayer #2
          • Captain Marvel #2
          • Champions #2
          • Conan the Barbarian #3
          • Criminal #2
          • Daredevil #1-2
          • Doctor Strange #11
          • Exorsisters #5
          • Fantastic Four #7
          • Forgotten Queen #1
          • Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man #3
          • Green Lantern #4
          • Gunhawks #1
          • Hardcore #3
          • Hawkman #9
          • Immortal Hulk #13
          • Incursion #1
          • Invaders #2
          • Killmonger #4
          • Marvels Annotated #1
          • Miles Morales Spider-Man #3
          • Ms Marvel #38
          • Outer Darkness #4
          • Prodigy #3
          • Punisher #8
          • Rolled and Told #6
          • Runaways #18
          • Savage Sword of Conan #1-2
          • Sharkey Bounty Hunter #1
          • Spider-Gwen Ghost Spider #5
          • Star Trek Q Conflict #2
          • Superior Spider-Man #3
          • Tony Stark Iron Man #8
          • Vindication #1
          • Winter Soldier #3
          • Wonder Twins #1
          TV I Watched This Month:
          • Brooklyn Nine-Nine "Four Movements" "A Tale of Two Bandits" "The Crime Scene" "The Honeypot"
          • Crashing "The Secret" "MC, Middle, Headliner" "Mom and Kat" "The Viewing Party"
          • Crazy Ex-Girlfriend "I Need A Break"
          • Doom Patrol "Pilot" "Donkey Patrol"
          • Dragon Prince "Book 2: Sky"
          • The Expanse "The Seventh Man" "Pyre" "Cascade" "Here There Be Dragons" "The Monster and the Rocket" "Caliban's War" "Fight or Flight" "IFF" "Assured Destruction" "Reload" "Triple Point" "Immolation" "Delta-V"
          • Grand Tour "Colombia Parts 1&2"
          • I Am The Night "Pilot" "Phenomenon of Interference"
          • I'm Sorry "Season 1" "Quietly Bleeding" "These Are My Fingers" "Barbara T. Warren" "Couples Massage"
          • Last Week Tonight with John Oliver "February 17th, 2019" "February 24th, 2019"
          • Miracle Workers "2 Weeks" "13 Days"
          • The Orville "Firestorm" "New Dimensions" "Mad Idolatry" "Ja'loja" "Primal Urges" "Home" "Nothing Left on Earth But the Fishes" "All The World is Birthday Cake" "A Happy Refrain" "Deflectors" "Identity Part 1"
          • Russian Doll "Season 1"
          • Star Trek Discovery "Point of Light" "An Obol for Charon" "Saints of Imperfection" "The Sound of Thunder"
          • Top Chef "Season 16"
          • Umbrella Academy "Season 1"
          • Weird City "Season 1"
          • You're The Worst "What Money?" "A Very Good Boy" "This Brief Fermata" "Zero Eggplants"
          Top Ten Shows This Month:
          1. Star Trek Discovery - Season two continues to feel more like ensemble Trek, with a mysterious sentient planet, a trip into the mycelial network, the return of a character I missed a lot, Section 31, and really great spotlight for Saru, along with the developing story of the Red Angel. Still my favorite show currently airing on TV.
          2. Umbrella Academy - A perfect adaptation. I liked the comic, but the TV version could never be the same thing, and instead, they dove into what made it work, basically Wes Anderson's X-Men, heavier on the family drama and lighter on the superhero weirdness, with a few truly magical musical numbers. And a spectacular performance by Mary J. Blige and Cameron Britton in particular. Can't wait for season two.
          3. You're the Worst - Jimmy and Gretchen's bumpy road to the altar (or not, based on some of those flash forwards) continues to be the best dark relationship comedy on the air.
          4. Crashing - Pete's relationship with Kat started out sweet, but it was easy to see that it wasn't going to stay that way. I also continue to love seeing his evolution as a comedian, and this show uses guest starring comedians so well. Each season I like it a little bit more.
          5. Brooklyn Nine-Nine - I feel like I owe NBC a pass on about a dozen dumb decisions after they made the extremely smart decision to save this show and already renewed it for a seventh season. The Doug Judy episode was, as always, a highlight, and the writers managed to make a murder episode funny but also really engaging, and anytime Peralta and Holt team up is pretty great, so "The Honeypot" was a good one as well.
          6. I'm Sorry - Now that it's on Netflix, I finally watched this Andrea Savage-fronted comedy that has a little bit of Curb Your Enthusiasm style to it. It's amazing and funny and dark, and I loved it so much I had to start the second season on TruTV.
          7. The Expanse - Caught up on season two and then burned through all of season three. Super smart science fiction with about a dozen memorable characters, reminding me of Babylon 5 but with stronger production values. Season three makes a big midseason jump to a new book, and seeing them add in new characters and a new status quo was a pleasant surprise.
          8. Dragon Prince - Season two is even better than season one, deepening the characters, and offering up some really impressive action sequences (that fight between General Amaya and the Sunfire Elves, for example). Still hasn't reached the levels of Avatar the Last Airbender, but it's really good.
          9. The Orville - I'm so glad I caught back up on this one. Season two has taken a turn for slightly more serious, embracing it's "Next Gen with the serial numbers filed off," and the most recent two-parter was exceptional, their own "Battle at Wolf 359."
          10. Weird City - Soooo weird. But fun. Jordan Peele and Key & Peele writer Charlie Sanders bring together an impressive cast for six quick comedy-tinged but also inventive sci-fi shorts. The quick pitch is Black Mirror as a comedy, but it's got a little bit more to it than that. Not quite worth that Youtube premium subscription all on its own, but pick up a month and watch this, Cobra Kai, and maybe Wayne.
          11. Russian Doll - I wasn't as in love with this Groundhog Day-style Netflix show as everyone else, but it is really good, and Natasha Lyonne is, as always, terrific.
          12. Miracle Workers - TBS is not the best network, and this is merely OK. But the premise, a couple angels trying to put a couple together so God doesn't destroy Earth in a fit of pique, is fun, Steve Buscemi as God, and Daniel Radcliffe as the harried miracle worker angel are the two biggest names, but everyone is good in the cast, and I'll definitely watch the rest of this limited series.
          Movies I Watched This Month:
          • Kid Who Would Be King
          • Magnificent Seven (2016)
          • Molly's Game
          • Spider-Man Into the Spider-Verse
          • Welcome to Jumanji
          Places I Ate This Month (21+23=44):
          • Bon Chan
          • Brotherton Black BBQ (x2)
          • Chuy's
          • Culver's
          • Easy Tiger
          • El Chilito
          • Freebird's
          • Jim's
          • Kerbey Lane
          • Kura Revolving Sushi
          • McDonald's
          • Mod Pizza
          • New Fortune Chinese
          • Popeye's
          • Slab BBQ
          • Sonic
          • Tacodeli
          • Torchy's Tacos
          • Tumble 22
          • Wendy's
          • Wingstop