2010 in Review

/ Books, Geek Stuff, Movies, TV /

With the coming of the new year, I decided to reflect on the books I read and the movies and television that I watched in 2010.

Books

Best Reads

  1. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
  2. Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson
  3. Changes by Jim Butcher
  4. Assassin’s Apprentice by Robin Hobb

Best Surprise

  1. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
  2. Changes by Jim Butcher

Biggest Disappointment

  1. Assassin’s Quest by Robin Hobb
  2. The Time Machine by H.G. Wells

Best Character

  1. Winner: Kelsier (from Brandon Sanderson’s Mistborn)
  2. Runner up: Fitz (from Robin Hobb’s Farseer series)

Movies

Best Movie

  1. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
  2. Scott Pilgrim vs The World
  3. Inception
  4. Tron Legacy

Most Anticipated Movie

  1. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

Television

Best Television Show

  1. Lost
  2. Chuck

Best New Television Show

  1. The Event

Best “New to Me” Television Show

  1. Supernatural
  2. Arrested Development

Best Good Guy

  1. Chuck (Chuck)
  2. Hurley (Lost)

Best Bad Guy

  1. The Man in Black (Lost)
  2. Volkov (Chuck)

Hottest Lady

  1. Greta (Summer Glau) on Chuck
  2. Sarah on Chuck

So long 2010 and thanks for all the fish.

LOST: The New Man in Charge

/ TV /

I FINALLY got to see the 12 minute epilogue to Lost that was released on the Season 6 DVD and it was awesome!

Right now, Lost is basically my favorite show ever. I loved the mystery, the drama, the characters, the story; I loved it all. That’s not to say that there weren’t some things that I found to be annoying or disappointing, especially some of those unanswered questions and “Stranger in a Strange Land,” but I’ve forgiven the writers for some of their shortcomings and decided that I don’t care (that much). The characters and story were always the most important pieces to me and, on those fronts, Damon and Carlton delivered.

But when my mind cleared after witnessing a very emotional and beautiful season finale, I realized that there were a lot of questions that went unanswered and some of them were kind of a big deal. Then I heard that there was going to be an epilogue with Ben and Hurley on the Season 6 DVD and I was really excited, hoping that we would get a look at their time on the island and maybe an answer or two.

The epilogue leaked on YouTube shortly thereafter, but by the time I got home from work, it had been taken down and I was forced to wait and, in doing so, my eagerness dissipated and my forgetfulness took over until I realized just the other day that I still hadn’t seen it! A quick Google search directed me to the video and I can now say that I have been enlightened.

Basically, Ben visits a couple of dudes at a Dharma (Raiders-of-the-Lost-Ark-esque) warehouse in Guam and ends up showing them a training video starring Piere Chang, which reveals the answers to a number of mysteries like what the Hurley bird was and why pregnant women die on the island. From there, Ben visits Santa Rosa and recruits a teenage Walt to join him on the island. Ben and Walt join Hurley in a Dharma van and the epilogue concludes with them driving off. Based on Hurley’s comments, we are led to believe that Walt was special because he was a candidate.

Overall, it was pretty cool. I mean, this thing was a total fan treatment and their were a lot of nods to things that only the dedicated fans would understand. I definitely enjoyed it and, in fact, I may need to go back for a second viewing. If you are a Lost fan, do yourself a favor and check it out.

Comic-Con Recap #5: Sunday

/ Geek Stuff /

Sunday was kids day at Comic-Con and everything was scheduled to be wrapped up at 5:00 PM. I have to say that I was a little disappointed with the Sunday panels and overall atmosphere. After three days of pure glory, the convention kind of went out with a fizzle. I actually think I would prefer to just eliminate Sunday scheduling and go out with a bang (or maybe next time I would just skip Sunday).

The other part that was weird was that almost all of the panels were geared towards kids, but there weren’t really many kids at Comic-Con. And what kid wants to sit through an hour long panel anyways? I give them credit for trying to introduce a kid-friendly atmosphere, but I just didn’t think it worked very well.

Comic-Con exclusive LOST figures
(atop a beautiful hotel comforter)

So what ended up happening was that the Exhibit Hall was a zoo, largely because all the adults that had four day passes still showed up and needed something to do. That is exactly what happened to my brother and I. Don’t get me wrong, it was definitely cool to finally spend some time in the Exhibit Hall and finally pick up some souvenirs, but I would have liked to sit in on a panel or two.

Now that isn’t to say we didn’t try to sit through a panel. My brother and I are both huge Harry Potter fans so, naturally, we showed up at the Harry Potter fandom panel. Admittedly, I was nervous about there being an army of 14 year old girls in attendance, but we needed something to do and decided to give it a shot.

To be perfectly honest, about 15 minutes in, I was already thinking that it was the worst panel that I had attended. I guess I thought that the panel of well-known Potter fans would, you know, talk about the upcoming movies and perhaps discuss the footage shown in Hall H on Saturday. Instead, the panel opted for long-winded soliloquies about why the Potter fan community is still so strong.

Comic-Con exclusive Star Wars figures

But just when I thought I might doze off, it got worse. The crowd started singing the words to one of the songs of the Harry Potter musical and shortly afterwards they opened it up for fan questions. I got nervous when a dozen teenage girls sprinted to the microphone in the middle isle, but I didn’t actually walk out until the third consecutive “shipper” question was asked. Yikes.

I had been thinking about attending the Buffy musical screening, but after the Potter fiasco, I was scared to go anywhere near Ballroom 20.

Overall, Comic-Con was completely awesome. I definitely want to go again, but I’m not sure if it will be next year. If I lived in southern California, I think I would go every year. A lot of people that had been going for several years complained about the lines and the crowds (which was certainly understandable), but they were manageable if you planned things out and just accepted that you weren’t going to see every cool thing at the convention.

Well, I think that is it for the Comic-Con recaps. I’m out. Godspeed.

Comic-Con Recap #4: Saturday

/ Geek Stuff /

Saturday was perhaps our most efficient day at Comic-Con. My brother and I didn’t have a lot of panels on our to-do list, but we managed to sneak in a couple extras and really filled out our day. Here’s a breakdown of our day:

A small glimpse of the line for Chuck

Chuck – I was really excited about this panel so we got up way too early and showed up in line at 7:30 for the 10:00 panel. Needless to say, we probably could have showed up at about 9:00 or so and still made it in, but the time went fast as we chatted with the people around us. The panel was awesome even though it only lasted about 30 minutes. The entire cast was there and they were a ton of fun. This was definitely one of my favorite panels during the entire convention. And they announced that Chuck’s mom will be played by Linda Hamilton (yes, the original Sarah Conner) next season!

On another Chuck note, I didn’t see too many celebrities out and about, but all the ones did see were from Chuck. I saw Awesome, Morgan, and Leceister, though I didn’t stop them for pictures or anything.

The Event – We really wanted to go to the Warner Bros panel to see the new Harry Potter footage, but we weren’t sure if we would even be able to get in and it overlapped with Jay and Jack’s LOST Podcast panel. We were looking for something to do so we just walked into Room 6A and watched the pilot for The Event. There was no line and it killed some time, but the show didn’t look too bad either. I wasn’t crazy about the way the show was produced or the lead actor, but the premise was intriguing. I think I’ll give it a shot this fall.

The LOST Podcast with Jay and Jack – This panel was held over in the Santa Rosa room (hilarious, I know) at the Marriott next door. My brother and I are big LOST fans and we have both listened to Jay and Jack’s excellent podcast for a couple years. I definitely couldn’t pass up on this panel and I’m glad I didn’t because it was a lot of fun. The only down side was sitting through about 10 minutes or so of the Indy Fans panels that ran beforehand. Those guys were just downers (and I really like Indiana Jones!).

Warehouse 13 / Eureka – Once again, we found ourselves in the situation where we needed to kill some time. The Exhibit Hall, though very cool, was an absolute madhouse. We had a hard time dealing with the sheer volume of people so we tended to favor attending panels where you actually had a small amount of personal space. Therefore, we decided to check out this panel just a few minutes before it was scheduled to start and walked right in. Honestly, it was a lot of fun. The actors told some amusing stories and I left the panel thinking that I would really like to check out both shows. At the time, I had only seen a handful of episodes of Warehouse 13 and not a single episode of Eureka.

LOST But Not Forgotten – Our last panel of the day covered the upcoming Lost Encyclopedia. The panelists did a great job explaining their process, though I wasn’t certain that the moderator had ever used a computer before. I enjoyed the inside look and I think I’ll definitely be purchasing a copy when it comes out. The best part however was when some jerk asked why they couldn’t answering all of the questions and the moderator basically verbally bitch-slapped him.

That was a last panel for the day. After that we got some food, hung out a bit, and then hit up the Zombieland screening at the Marriott. Damn, that is a funny movie.

Well, I’m out. Godspeed.