Stuff not from my 2017 goals

Not included here are movies found in my 2017 favorites list.

TV

Hadn’t seen before:

  • Breaking Bad (seasons 1 – 5)
  • The Office (UK) (series 1 – 2)
  • Sherlock (series 1 – 4)
  • Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later (season 1)

Had seen before:

  • Batman: The Animated Series (all of it)
  • Superman: The Animated Series (all of it)

One night at the beginning of August, I decided try a new show.  Vaguely remembering having heard good things, I first watched the pilot of Sons of Anarchy.  It did not engage me, so I then watched the pilot of Breaking Bad.  It did, and I watched two more episodes that night.  Then I watched the rest of the series during the remainder of the month, with a short break for The Defenders.  It was a fantastic show, though quite dark and not for everyone.  Walter White’s slow descent and then abrupt transformation into almost pure evil was something to see.  One of the things that stood out to me the most was watching Raymod Cruz play the terrifyingly crazy Tuco Salmanca, after having seen him play one of my favorite good characters for about 10 years on The Closer and Major Crimes.

Before Breaking Bad, I decided to finally become cool and watch Sherlock, which I greatly enjoyed.  Because Martin Freeman is so fantastic, I followed that with the original UK version of The Office, of which he was by far (by far) my favorite part.

Wet Hot American Summer came right after Breaking Bad, I having seen the original film and Netflix series in 2015.  It was as funny as its predecessors.

I got Justice League Unlimted on Blu-ray for Christmas two years ago, and it’s been sitting, still shrink-wrapped, awaiting me to watch it.  I wanted to finally get to it (I haven’t yet, but soon), and I used it as an excuse to rewatch Batman: TAS and Superman: TAS, the former being amazing and the latter being pretty great itself.  I then watched the first season of Justice League (the good, but weaker, of the two), and am eagerly awaiting the last episodes of season 2, because I love them.

Movies

Hadn’t seen before:

  • The Big Short
  • Burn After Reading
  • The D Train
  • The Fundamentals of Caring
  • Ghost in the Shell
  • The House
  • Justice League Dark
  • Mean Girls
  • Teen Titans: The Judas Contract
  • Underworld

Had seen before:

  • Batman: Mask of the Phantasm
  • Batman & Mr. Freeze: Sub Zero
  • Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice
  • Blazing Saddles
  • Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
  • Get Smart
  • Frozen
  • Hook
  • Mulan
  • Rise of the Planet of the Apes
  • Superbad
  • Tropic Thunder

I remember when Mean Girls came out, and I had no interest in watching it.  Then a few years later, I learned that it had been written by Tina Fey, who is completely awesome, and I wanted to watch it, but never got around to it.  I finally watched it on Netflix a few months ago, and it was great.

The last time I saw Blazing Saddles was probably when my wife and I were dating, or first married.  It’s hard to put into words just how much of a comedic genius Mel Brooks is.

I’d seen both Dawn and Rise of the Planet of the Apes, but didn’t really remember anything about them other than that I had enjoyed them, and so I rewatched them before War for the Planet of the Apes.  Both were really good.  One thing that stuck out to me, especially in Dawn, was how in a couple of shots I could see hints of Gollum in Caesar’s face.  It makes sense, since they’re both played by Andy Serkis, but it really stuck out to me because they were both motion capture performances.  My wife noticed it, too, but couldn’t put her finger on why Caeasar looked familiar, because she didn’t know Andy Serkis played him.

It had been probably since close to Superbad came out that I had seen it, and it was another one that I rewatched on Netflix in the late summer–as I recall, it was a few days before it was scheduled to leave Netflix so I made it a point to watch it while I had the chance.  (It went to Amazon Prime right afterward, which I also subscribe to, but I digress.)  I am an unapologetic fan of Michael Cera, Emma Stone is also one of my favorites, and Jonah Hill isn’t too bad, either.  It was crazy funny, and it made me a little nostalgic for the high school days, though my high school days were nothing like those depicted in the movie.

It had also been probably since Tropic Thunder came out that I had seen it, so I also rewatched it on Netflix.  So funny.  Robert Downey, Jr. just kills it.

I watched Underworld because my wife likes the film series.  I made it through the first one, and they are not my thing.

I was not a fan of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.  For some reason, I decided to give it another shot, in the form of its Ultimate Edition, before re-watching Wonder Woman when it came out on Blu-ray.  I still am not fan, but for some different reasons.

  • The first time, the portrayal of Lex Luthor bugged me.  The second time, not so much.
  • I liked that Jimmy Olsen was named in the Ultimate Edition.  I didn’t like that he was unceremoniously killed off.
  • The setup for the framing of Superman in the beginning was much clearer, so that’s a plus.
  • Bruce’s nightmare was even longer and still felt out of place.
  • I disliked Batman more this time around, which makes me sad.  I get that we’re seeing a version of him that has been through a lot, but just… ugh.
  • Some of the extensions portrayed Superman a little better, like when he was shown helping victims after the explosion at the senate hearing.
  • On the flip side, how dumb are you, Superman?  What prevents you from explaining to Bruce, right off the bat, that Lex has kidnapped Martha Kent?  Just fly up a bit, or something, so he can’t reach you.  I really hated the stupid forced fight that could have been 110% avoided.
  • “Save Martha” is still completely, unfathomably awful.  Batman is not a whiny baby who freaks out when his mother’s name is mentioned.  And guess what?  It would have been completely unnecessary, had Superman just said, “Hold up for 10 seconds, Bruce, let me explain what’s going on with Lex here.”

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