My Favorite Things 2020 (The First Half)

I haven't compiled a mid-year list of my favorite things since 2015. I've just been so struck with compelling media during the year of COVID that I felt it was worth doing a quick run-down of the stuff that's keeping me occupied while must social activities are put on hold.

Music

I'm looking forward to new records from The Beths as well as The Front Bottoms. The singles for both have been superb.

LPs

  • The 1975 - Notes On a Conditional Form
  • Mansions - Big Bad
  • City Mouth - Coping Machine
  • Four Year Strong - Brain Pain
  • U.G.L.Y. - Goons Live Young
  • Hayley Williams - Petals For Armor
  • Phoebe Bridgers - Punisher
  • Soccer Mommy - color theory
  • D Smoke - Black Habits
  • JoJo - Good To Know
  • Pinegrove - Marigold
  • Snarls - Burst
  • Fiona Apple - Fetch The Bolt Cutters

EPs

  • Super American - YOBWOC [1]
  • King Neptune - Alright, Whatever
  • Cady Groves - Bless My Heart [2]

Podcasts

  • Dead Eyes
  • California King
  • The Last Archive
  • Dithering

Movies

  • Underwater
  • Onward
  • The Invisible Man

TV

  • Middleditch & Schwartz (Netflix) [3]
  • Tiger King (Netflix) [4]
  • The Pharmacist (Netflix)
  • Dracula (Netflix)
  • McMillions (HBO)
  • Stargate SG-1 (Showtime) [5]

Games

  • Animal Crossing: New Horizons
  • The Last Of Us, Part II [6]

  1. Not included, but my favorite song this year has been "How Big Is Your Brain?" The music video for which, is very fun. ↩︎

  2. It's not fair that Cady wasn't alive to celebrate the release of these songs. I have no doubt that her career would have blossomed as a result. ↩︎

  3. I do hope more of these appear in my Netflix queue someday. I've rarely laughed as hard or often during a single special than I did during all three of these. ↩︎

  4. Truly a once-in-a-lifetime documentary subject. ↩︎

  5. I finally took my friend Tyler's advice and watched the movie, then fell into the TV show. I only wish I would have discovered this franchise when I was a kid. ↩︎

  6. I've been thinking about this game like I thought about Parasite last year—frequently and with complex feelings. This was such a beautifully heartwrenching story with complicated themes and many moments where the player is made to do things they don't want to see happen. It's a phenomenal game for which Neil Druckmann and Naughty Dog should be very proud. ↩︎