As we approach the end of the year and the Christmas holidays it’s a perfect time to be catching up on all the recent or not-so-recent diamonds in the rough you may have missed out on in terms of entertainment while you’ve been busy with lesser pursuits --- like work, or sport, or friends. So, here are eight things that I personally suggest you discover the wonders of over this festive season.
8. The Baseballs – Great a capella trio who sing girly pop songs in a cool jazzy way. If you’re a fan of music that just makes you smile, they’re a good bet.
7. The Walking Dead – Just, just eugh, it’s just so good. A lot of my love for the Walking Dead doesn’t even come from the content of the show but from the endless discussion and debate that is instigated among friend groups after each episode. But a warning: don’t get attatched to any characters; there’s like a 95% chance they end up dead.6. SourceFed/sxephil – My favourite YouTube channels, both legitimate and nerd-themed news in bite-sized and hilarious chunks. Told by a great little family of quirky presenters.
5. Breaking Bad – I’m sure you’re already sick to death of your friends talking about Breaking Bad like it’s the best thing since sliced bread; there’s a reason for that --- it may well be the best thing simce sliced bread…. I kid you not – but it’s over, and I’m sad, and I want people to share that pain with, so go give it a watch, and then come find me and we can just hug and cry together for a bit. I promise.4. Imagine Dragons – Ok, full disclosure, I am by no means a music fan, I’m completely lost when it comes to the kids today and their dub-techno-hip-garage-hop, but I LOVE Imagine Dragons; they are legitimately the only modern musicians whose every song I enjoy. The album is incredible: buy it, own it, love it.
3. Ender’s Game – Not the movie; it was average. The book. There’s very little I can say about Ender’s Game without spoiling it for you, as it's very reliant on people going into it un-spoiled, but this book is, in my opinion, the perfect unconventional coming-of-age story, set against an incredibly inventive and unique post-apocalyptic sci-fi backdrop.
Now – the things discussed so far are generally mainstream and you probably only needed a gentle nudge towards them. The following two are more obscure and I’m sure many of you will have doubts about them. But please bear with me, as these three are totally different from anything you will have seen before and are amazing in their own right because of it.
2. The Prestige – Michael Caine, Scarlett Johanssen, Hugh Jackman, Christian Bale, David Bowie and old-timey magicians. I don’t really think it requires any more selling.
1. Firefly – This is quite simply the best sci-fi television series of all team, in an alternate future created with a composite of western frontier and eastern samurai culture a ragtag group of rebels fight to get by, I simply cannot recommend Firefly enough. It was prematurely cancelled due to poor scheduling and idiotic studio directors but a film (Serenity) was later created to tie up the loose ends – this is one show that really deserves to be more popular than it is, so I implore you, please, I love this, go share in the pure joy this brings to me and to its small but dedicated audience.