The Best of 2004

Everyone else is making lists about 2004, so why not?


Best TV Moment of 2004:
The end of Angel, a series I started with the last episodes. I’d go on to watch most of the rest of the series in reruns, deciding that the plots were entertaining but it lacked the humor of Buffy. Not really worth watching a second time.
TV I Missed in 2004: Janet Jackson’s nipple. Went to dip my chip and missed the spectactle that would make morality popular again. Oh, and that whole Lost and Desperate Housewives thing. What? TV with commercials? No thanks, I’ll be watching something on DVD.

Best TV Series on DVD I’m Now Addicted To:
Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Best episode: “Once More With Feeling” – the musical extravaganza from season 6 (check out the soundtrack)
Best season: 2 – it includes Angel going bad (the first time), Oz as a werewolf, Willow getting a boyfriend, Zander with military knowledge and dating someone who’s not a monster, a bazooka taking out a big bad and best of all: Spike.

Best TV Series That Was Cancelled and Now Lives On In DVD So You Better Buy It:
Freaks and Geeks – High school in 1980 as seen from the outcasts. So painful, so truthful.
Favorite Geek: Do I have to pick just one? I’d go with Sam Weir because it’s so painful to watch him, though Bill Haverchuck is a very close second because he’s accepted his geekhood (and he rocks in the closet scene with Cindy Sanders).
Favorite Freak: Ken Miller. It took a while for his character to really come into focus, but when it finally did he’s the best. My favorite is when he out drinks every one because he knows it’s non-alcoholic beer.
Favorite Episode: It’s so hard to pick, but “Beers and Weirs” if only because of Millie’s inspired performance of “Jesus is Just Alright with Me” to encourage everyone not to drink. “Discos and Dragons” also gets high marks for watching freak Daniel play Dungeons & Dragons with the geeks and get into it. Too good.

Biggest Movie Event of 2004 I Completely Missed:
Tie: The Passion of the Christ and Fahrenheit 9/11. I still haven’t seen either movie and they’re both pretty low on my list of rentals. Napolean Dynamite comes in third, according to the entire youth group, though it does top the rental list.

Best Movie of 2004:
The Incredibles. Hands down. So good I’ve seen it twice in the theaters, an honor only bestowed upon movies in the Star Wars or Lord of the Rings sagas.
Best Movie Sequel: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban – The feature film translation finally gets it right. Spider-Man 2 is a close second for being all around fun. Dead last? Shrek 2. Alluding to movies from last year has never been so unfunny.

Favorite Books of 2004:
What Would Buffy Do? – Because it gave insight into my favorite TV show (see above)
Jesus Sound Explosion – Because I met the author at a reading and he makes fun of Bethel.
So You Wanna Be a Rock Star – Because it sheds light on the real world of rock and roll (and I read the entire thing in various Barnes & Nobles)
No Plot? No Problem! – For providing the necessary motivation behind my first-ever novel (which though I’m not conceited enough to include in this list, I will mention it).
A Generous Orthodoxy – Because I got to interview the author not once, but twice. Oh, it was a good read, too.

Worst Book of 2004:
Shadowmancer. Only its complete awfulness and the potential to mock it enabled me to keep going.
Worst Ending to a Book with Potential: The Cheese Monkeys
Most Thinly-Veiled Promotional Book: The Complex Infrastructure Known as the Female Mind by Relient K

Top 5 Albums of 2004:
How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb.
Ocean Avenue by Yellowcard
Guilt Show by The Get Up Kids
Under My Skin by Avril Lavigne
Brace Yourself for the Mediocre by Roper

Favorite New U2 Song:
Tie: “All Because of You” and “City of Blinding Lights”

Favorite New Artists Discovered in Concert:
Jason Morant

Longest Trip of 2004:
2,450 miles in a single week. St. Paul to Detroit to Great Bend, KS to St. Paul.
Best sights: Las Vegas, take your pick between the desert and the asphalt paradise.
Shortest Trip: Los Angeles, front door to front door in less than 48 hours.

Best Family Game:
Carcassonne. Of course we realized the day after Christmas we’d been playing it wrong all year. The Nintendo GameCube comes in a close second with the goofy joy that is Mario Kart Double Dash.

Best Time Saver:
Simon Delivers, the online grocery retailer that delivers my groceries to my back door. Today’s trip to Cub confirmed that time saver as a sanity saver as well. My Apple G5 comes in at a close second since I no longer have to face the blue screen of death. That’s got to be worth something.
Best Entertainment Time Saver: TV on DVDs that turn an hour long show into 42 minutes with no commercials.
Best Space Saver: The iPod, which carries my entire CD collection and allows us to go on trips without bringing along the boatload of CDs.

One thought on “The Best of 2004”

  1. Hey Kevin,

    Thanks for the list. I’ve been wondering about Freaks and Geeks, but the set is so dang pricey due to all the music they licensed. I never saw it during it’s brief run on TV, but I’ve heard nothing but positive things about the show.

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