My Favorite Things: 2021

Another year, another swath of media to devour, process, and regurgitate in the form of bulleted lists.

Music

LPs

  • Bo Burnham - Inside
  • Super American - Sup
  • Dan + Shay - Good Things
  • Hayley Williams - FLOWERS for VASES / descansos
  • Cheekface - Emphatically No.
  • Manchester Orchestra - The Million Masks Of God
  • Lorde - Solar Power
  • Nick Shoulders - Home on the Rage
  • chloe moriondo - Blood Bunny
  • Various Artists - tick tick... BOOM! (OST)
  • You, Me, and Everyone We Know - Something Heavy
  • Noah Gundersen - A Pillar of Salt
  • The Dirty Nil - Fuck Art
  • Lil Nas X - MONTERO
  • Mansions - Old Best Friends
  • Dijon - Absolutely
  • D Smoke - War & Wonders
  • Turnstile - GLOW ON
  • Left at London - T.I.A.P.F.Y.H.
  • Hovvdy - True Love
  • Fleet Foxes - A Very Lonely Solstice

EPs

  • Lizzy McAlpine - When the World Stopped Moving: The Live - EP
  • Mallory Merk - Counterparts - EP
  • Young Culture - Godspeed - EP
  • beabadoobee - Our Extended Play - EP
  • Meet Me @ The Altar - Model Citizen - EP
  • 1ST VOWS - Season One - EP
  • chloe moriondo - blood bunny (acoustic) - EP

Honorable Mentions
A few more records I really liked, but didn't spend as much time with this year.

  • Kacey Musgraves - star-crossed
  • Clairo - Sling
  • Barenaked Ladies - Detour de Force
  • ABBA - Voyage
  • Julien Baker - Little Oblivions
  • Counting Crows - Butter Miracle Suite One
  • Julia Michaels - Not In Chronological Order
  • Paul McCartney - McCartney III Imagined
  • Manchester Orchestra - Christmas Songs: Vol. 1
  • Telethon - Swim Out Past the Breakers
  • shame Drunk - Tank Pink

Podcasts

I didn't add a lot to my queue this year. Removed a few. Binged a lot. Tracked less. These are the ones I can't miss.

  • A24 Podcast [1]
  • Dead Eyes [2]
  • This American Life
  • Roderick on The Line
  • Reconcilable Differences
  • California King [3]
  • Heavyweight [4]

Movies

This year was much better for the film industry than the last and I took full advantage, watching 146 newly released films and 313 older ones. I celebrated 56 days of Halloween instead of my standard 31. I also attended the Nightstream Festival to catch a screening of Mad God and a few other horror films. I'd like to do more streaming festivals this year.

Full lists of features/docs and shorts as well as my yearly stats on Letterboxd.[5]

Features

  1. Tick, Tick... Boom! [6]
  2. Dune [7]
  3. Mad God [8]
  4. The Green Knight
  5. The Dig
  6. Language Lessons
  7. Coda
  8. Riders Of Justice
  9. Finch
  10. The Last Duel
  11. Candyman
  12. Judas and the Black Messiah
  13. Encanto
  14. The French Dispatch
  15. No Time To Die
  16. Nobody
  17. Red Rocket
  18. Space Sweepers
  19. Titane
  20. Together Together

Specials

  1. In & Of Itself
  2. Inside [9]
  3. Good Timing With Jo Firestone
  4. Come From Away
  5. Manchester Orchestra - A Black Mile To The Surface
  6. Tig Notaro: Drawn

Documentaries

  1. The Rescue
  2. Woodlands Dark And Days Bewitched
  3. The Story of Late Night
  4. Becoming Cousteau
  5. Woodstock '99
  6. Who Are You, Charlie Brown?
  7. Alien On Stage
  8. Beanie Mania
  9. Count Me In
  10. Kubrick on Kubrick

Television

Limited Series

  • Midnight Mass
  • Squid Game
  • Mare of Easttown
  • Hellbound

Serialized

  • How-To With John Wilson, Season 2 (HBO Max) [10]
  • Ted Lasso (Disney+) [11]
  • Joe Pera Talks with You (Adult Swim)
  • Survivor 41 (CBS) [12]
  • Lost In Space (Netflix) [13]
  • Lego Masters (Fox) / Lego Masters (AU)
  • Succession (HBO)
  • Ash vs. Evil Dead (Starz) [14]
  • Locke & Key (Netflix) [15]
  • Larry Sanders Show (HBO)
  • Star Wars: Visions (Disney+)
  • Dave (Hulu)
  • Atypical (Netflix)
  • Band Of Brothers (HBO)
  • Invincible (Prime Video)
  • Get A Life (Fox)
  • Hunters (Prime Video)
  • Alice In Borderland (Netflix)
  • Sweet Home (Netflix)

Games

I keep a running list of video games I've played here. These I enjoyed in 2021.

  • Thimbleweed Park (Mac) [16]
  • Unpacking (Switch)
  • Mario Maker 2 (Switch)

Read more:


  1. This show takes filmmakers and puts them in the room with another filmmaker, actor, or otherwise notable film person—making for more interesting conversations than your standard filmcast. ↩︎

  2. Continually proud of my pal Mike and his work on this show. I've been quietly practicing my restraint by not looking at the private mixing feed we host. Knowing that the end of this season has been available to me for a few months is extremely tempting. ↩︎

  3. Just as suddenly as it reappeared, the boys stopped publishing in May. ↩︎

  4. I'm pretty bummed this show went Spotify-exclusive. Can I still listen to it there for free? Yes. Have I? No. If it doesn't appear in my Overcast queue when I have the time to listen to podcasts, I don't even think about it. It's really that simple. ↩︎

  5. The lovely folks at Letterboxd rewarded my for my years of patronage with the unused handle jacob after I inquired. Very nice of them. Best services ever built. ↩︎

  6. This movie and soundtrack completely took over my world for a few weeks. ↩︎

  7. I missed the first IMAX run of this, but caught it when it came back for a week. ↩︎

  8. It's absolutely insane that this even exists. A horrifying stop-motion masterpiece. ↩︎

  9. Another soundtrack that dominated my playlists. Bo fo sho fo ever. ↩︎

  10. My favorite show on television today. Hilarious, real, and always surprising. S2E2 started with wine appreciation and took a truly wild turn which left my jaw dropped for a full 5 minutes. ↩︎

  11. We fell in love with Ted Lasso just in time for season 2. ↩︎

  12. A new era of Survivor. I'm not really a fan of the new editing style or patronizing breaks of the 4th wall. ↩︎

  13. Really fun science fiction with a solid and enjoyable cast. A mere three seasons, but with an ending that satisfied. An outlier in a genre that takes itself pretty seriously these days, especially on TV. ↩︎

  14. The best of Ash's Character. Many insane moments mixed in with a fair amount of bore. ↩︎

  15. Locke & Key feels like exactly like the type of fiction I always wanted to write as a kid. Perfect in its level of fantasy with a powerful element that appeals to the collector in me. ↩︎

  16. I streamed a playthrough of this on Twitch with my pal Terin. ↩︎