2011, You Were Fun…But Now It’s 2012′s Turn
Posted by Michael on January 15, 2012
As we’re about two weeks into 2012, this is a fairly natural time to look back on the last year, and look forward to the year ahead. 2011 was…an interesting year. That’s a story for another time and place. Let’s go out sometime, we’ll have drinks, I’ll tell you all about it. But, 2011 had some amazing high points, and this is a great time to recap. Also, let’s look ahead at the year that’s to come, and plan our highlights, shall we?
Let’s look back at 2011, and let’s see what was good and bad. Let’s hand out some awards. We’ll call them Nerdies. And then we’ll look ahead to those moments of the upcoming year that we just can’t miss.
Best Movie - Mostly, 2011 saw remakes and sequels. And don’t get me wrong, some of them were fine. And then we got Thor, which was overall was a solid flick, and had some great moments. But for my money, I give the Best Movie award to Captain America: The First Avenger. You can read my full review here, but overall I felt like the movie delivered everything I’d ask for in a superhero movie…a well-told story, plenty of action, and just a dash of humor. In fact, it may be about time to watch it again.
Runners Up: Thor, Tucker and Dale vs. Evil
Best Game - 2011 was a fantastic year for video games, whether you play on PC, Xbox, PS3, or the Wii…they all saw some excellent releases. And when it comes down to the BEST game of the year…it’s a tough call. I could probably do a top 5 list pretty easily, and my top 3 are all just notches apart. But I won’t, I’ll try to just pick one. The one game that has made the biggest impact on me. Probably also the one with which I’ve spent the most time. At the end of the day (or, well, year), I have to pick a game which barely even hit in 2011…Star Wars: The Old Republic. A full review will be finished very soon, but if you think World of Warcraft meets Star Wars meets Mass Effect, you’re really not too far off…and the finished package is pretty brilliant, and lots of fun.
Runners Up: Skyrim, Rift
Best New TV Show - Fall of 2011 is the first season that I’ve been pretty engrossed by TV…several shows get my attention regularly that started in 2011, and it’s been a while since I’ve been able to say that. Thank God for my DVR. So, of all the new shows, which one gets the Nerdies award? Happy Endings - it’s got that Friends/How I Met Your Mother-style group interaction, a bizarre, warped sense of humor, and a cast of truly quirky characters. I’m also truly impressed with Elisha Cuthbert. I’ve been in love with her since The Girl Next Door, but she’s more than just a hot piece of ass. She’s actually a very solid comedy actress, and I enjoy her in every episode. The show works in so many wonderful ways, and if you’re not watching it…you should be.
Runners Up: Game of Thrones, Grimm, Once Upon a Time, Revenge
Best New Tech - Samsung Galaxy Nexus. I’m a die-hard Android fan, and this is the phone that really brings the platform to where it needs to be. Excellent hardware, plenty of memory, and Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) is a beautiful, responsive, and capable platform for a smartphone.
Runners Up: Transformer Prime tablet, Galaxy S2 lineup, Macbook Air
Best Book - I’d love to do this, but it’s been an embarrassingly long time since I’ve read anything that wasn’t written in HTML. Ask somebody else. Girl With the Dragon Tattoo??
Actually, I think I’ve covered everything I’m informed enough to judge. I’m sure there was great music, but I pretty much just listen to my XM station that I know and love, and so am not privy to the Hot New Stuff in the music world. Let’s look ahead to 2012, shall we?
What has me excited about this upcoming year? It looks to be a great year for movies…especially for those of us who are Joss Whedon fans. There are some good TV offerings coming up, and CES showed us that there’s some hot tech on the horizon. That’s the stuff that gets me most excited, so let’s discuss that, shall we?
Cabin in the Woods – Joss Whedon will be turning the horror genre on its head come April, and this is a movie that anyone who likes Joss, horror, or just good damn writing should be sure to not miss.
The Avengers - Iron Man was great. Thor was a solid flick. We all know how I felt about Captain America. And The Incredible Hulk (the Ed Norton one) got a LOT of things right. Toss these in a bowl, put Joss at the helm, and it’s little wonder that I’m more excited about this movie than almost any other in my life. Except…
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey - Part one of the prequel to The Lord of the Rings. Peter Jackson is taking us back to Middle Earth, and I don’t have words for how excited I am about this. I grew up reading Tolkein’s books, and The Lord of the Rings remains my favorite movie series ever made. I cannot wait to see Bilbo’s discovery of the One Ring, the journey with the 13 dwarves, and in part 2 (The Hobbit: There and Back Again) the dragon Smaug. Martin Freeman was an awesome choice for Bilbo, and if anyone ever says Ian McKellen wasn’t the best choice for Gandalf ever, I’ll punch them in their damn face — glad to see him in that role again. If you haven’t seen the trailer yet, go watch it. Right now. In the next twelve months, this is my absolute number-one most eager experience. Expect a rabid, drooling review of the midnight showing come December 14.
The Dark Knight Rises - Despite the crappy name, I’m very excited for Christopher Nolan’s conclusion to the Batman story. Set 7 years after The Dark Knight, we finally get to see Christian Bale face off against Tom Hardy’s Bane, and despite my reservations I have the utmost faith in Nolan’s ability to give me exactly what I want from my Batman movies. I’m also in the minority of those who like Anne Hathaway as Selina Kyle, so we’ll see how that goes. July 20, all will be revealed.
The L.A. Complex - My girlfriend Jewel Staite has a new show coming up wherein she plays an aspiring actress in LA trying to find her break. Initial reports are good, and I’ll watch damn near anything to support my girl. It’s a Canadian show, but those of us in the US of A can catch it on the CW this Spring.
Game of Thrones, Season 2 - George R.R. Martin’s book series got a very solid first-series run on HBO last year, and round two will be coming this Spring. Winter is coming back, and I’m thrilled to see the House of Stark back on TV. I haven’t read the books (yet) but I loved season 1, and can’t wait to see what season 2 has in store.
Spartacus: Blood and Sand, Season 2 - I admit it: Spartacus was my guilty pleasure last year. When the short-run Gods of the Arena played, I watched it enthusistically, and I hope Netflix renegotiates rights with Starz so they can run season 2 as promptly as they have the previous installments. Not sure how it’ll go since Andy Whitfield passed away, but what little I’ve seen makes me hopeful that his replacement as Spartacus will carry on his legacy competently.
Tech moves so fast, it’s hard to look ahead for 12 months. But since CES was this week, we have a few glimpses as to what we might expect this year.
Android 4.0: Ice Cream Sandwich - I’ve already proclaimed my love for the Galaxy Nexus, and this year will see ICS rolling out for most Android phones that have come out in the last year. Android 4.0 is powerful and responsive, and could redefine the Android landscape as we know it. Google is pushing for a lot of standardization across multiple phones, and ICS looks like it’s bringing Android to new levels.
And that’s what I’m most excited about this upcoming year. Thoughts? Agree/disagree? What did you enjoy in 2011, what has you psyched about 2012? Leave us comments!