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The end of 2019 has finally passed, and I can now look back and see the full picture of what entertainment media I consumed for the year. As has been the case the past few years, it has been dominated by TV (and YouTube, which I didn't include in this retrospective). Below you will find my list of the top TV shows of the year, the worst shows of the year, the books I read in 2019, the films I saw in 2019 (although not necessarily released in that year), and all the television shows I watched during the year (including the ones I only watched an episode or three of before giving up or just never going back). [You'll notice many TV shows get listed twice in the "Television Shows Watched" list; the first time is finishing the season that began in 2018, and the second time is starting the season that began in 2019.] In 2020 I expect a shift towards books, or I plan on one at least. I've already unsubbed from several YouTube channels that eat up a lot of my time, and I'm planning to cut back on the telly this year as well. I hope. But I've got a stack of books I'm determined to get through by year's end, so I need to find the time. Thankfully, but somewhat sadly, a number of the programs listed below had their final season/series in 2019. Top 20 TV Shows of 20191) Watchmen2) Doom Patrol3) The Expanse4) Luther5) The Boys6) Man in the High Castle7) Legends of Tomorrow8 ) The Mandalorian 9) His Dark Materials10) True Detective11) Black Mirror12) Cloak & Dagger13) Young Justice - Outsiders14) Good Omens15) The Punisher 16) Umbrella Academy17) The Planets (BBC docu-series)18) Daredevil 19) The Magicians20) Game of ThronesHonorable Mentions (not in any particular order)Jessica JonesVictoriaVeronica MarsStranger ThingsSwamp ThingWorst TV Shows watched in 2019 (#1 being the worst)1) Another Life2) The War of the Worlds (BBC miniseries)3) Knightfall4) Nightflyers5) RiverdaleBooks read in 2019 (in order read)How Star Wars Conquered the Universe by TaylorGenesis by Ken LozitoNemesis by Ken LozitoLegacy by Ken LozitoSalvation Lost by Peter F HamiltonSanctuary by Ken LozitoDiscovery by Ken LozitoEmergence by Ken LozitoKing of Ashes by Raymond E Feist (started, 65% complete)Films seen in 2019 (incl: documentaries & comedy hours; # is rating out of 10, in order seen) Aquaman (7.7)Captain Marvel (8.9)Annihilation (9.3)Dumbo (7.4)Shazam! (8.3)Avengers: Endgame (9.0)Game of Thrones: The Last Watch (BTS documentary) (9.5)The Atomic Soldiers (documentary short) (9.5)Dark Phoenix (7.2)The Lego Movie (7.8)Ramy Youssef - "Feelings" (Comedy hour) (9.4)Spider-Man: Far From Home (7.9)Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (9.8)Once Upon A Time... In Hollywood (8.7)Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (7.0)Downton Abbey (8.5)Mark Ellis - "Dog Stepfather" (Comedy Hour) (9.6)Aladdin 2019 (9.0)Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker (8.0)The Director and the Jedi (BTS documentary) (8.5)Television shows watched in 2019 (listed approximately in order of beginning to watch)Daredevil season 3 (finished)Doctor Who episode 12.00 (New Year’s Special 2019)The Gifted season 2 (finished)Runways seasons 2 & 3 (finished)The 100 seasons 5 & 6 (complete)The Magicians seasons 3 & 4 (complete)Young Justice - Outsiders season 3 parts 1 & 2 (complete)Knightfall episode 1.01Star Wars Resistance season 1 (finished)The Flash season 5 (finished)Victoria series 3 (complete)Star Trek Discovery season 2 (complete)Supernatural season 14 (finished)Supergirl season 4 (finished)Death in Paradise series 8 (complete)Arrow season 7 (finished)Riverdale season 3 (finished)Luther series 5 (complete)Black Lightning season 2 (complete)Doom Patrol season 1 (complete)True Detective season 3 (complete)Legends of Tomorrow season 4 (complete)Cloak & Dagger season 2 (complete)Les Miserables (BBC miniseries, episode 1 only)Game of Thrones season 8 (complete)Warrior episode 1.01Agents of SHIELD season 6 (complete)iZombie season 6 (complete)Umbrella Academy season 1 (complete)Good Omens (miniseries) (complete)Swamp Thing season 1 (complete)Krypton season 2 (complete)The Planets (BBC docu-series) (complete)The Punisher season 2 (complete)Black Mirror season 5 (complete)Killjoys season 5 (complete)Man in the High Castle seasons 3 & 4 (complete) Nightflyers season 1 (complete)Veronica Mars season 4 (complete)Jessica Jones season 3 (complete)The Boys season 1 (complete)Stranger Things season 3 (complete)Hanna season 1 (complete)Carnival Row season 1 (complete)Pennyworth season 1 (complete)The Originals season 5 (complete)Space Command pilot episode (on YouTube) Legacies seasons 1 (complete)Titans season 2 (complete)Batwoman season 1 (started)Supergirl season 5 (started)Star Wars Resistance season 2 (started)The Flash season 6 (started)Black Lightning season 3 (started)Arrow season 8 (started)Riverdale season 4 (started)Nancy Drew season 1 (started)Supernatural season 15 (started)Legacies season 2 (started)Another Life episode 1.01Watchmen season 1 (complete)His Dark Materials season 1 (complete)The Mandalorian season 1 (complete)Harley Quinn season 1 (started)The Expanse season 4 (complete)The Witcher season 1 (complete)The War of the Worlds (BBC miniseries) episodes 1.01-1.03
One topic that's been on my mind lately, where I think the TV show could be either amazing or awful, is in its visualization of channeling. The showrunners have a tricky task here, as there were many, many scenes in the WoT that hinged on actions that were entirely invisible to a non-channeling observer. When they show the POV of a channeler (which will be more often than not, if the show gets past the first few seasons), it seems like they will need to add CGI effects that convey the origin (Saidin/Saidar/True Power) and element (Earth/Air/Fire/Water/Spirit) of each thread in a distinctive way so that the viewer can tell the difference. In my mind, the weaves form a sort of overlay atop whatever visible manifestation the power has, but the texture and color of the threads differ. Saidin has a "sharp" look, as though made of needles of glass or ice, with high contrast, angles, clearly defined edges. Saidar looks softer and more fuzzy, like actual thread or yarn, with smooth curves. Elements give the weaves color (Earth/Air/Fire/Water/Spirit -> Brownish/Sky Blue/Sea Green/Crimson/Silver), and perhaps a bit of an aura (wisps of Dust/Cloud/Flame/Spray). The TP overlays them all with sooty blackness. It also seems like they should have consistent visualizations for a channeler's link to the Source, for Shielding/Severing, and for the Taint (perhaps a foreshadowing of the TP special effect). They'll also need a way to convey the "goosebumps" sensation when Rand senses Saidar in use - perhaps similar to the way the Highlander TV show conveyed the "Buzz" when they sensed each other. How do you visualize the weaves in your mind? Do you think the show can afford to do it justice, without blowing its CGI budget? I think I'll be happy if, after watching a season or two, I can distinguish the weaves depicted in the show on sight.