BEST OF 2014:

2014 was‘s first year of true existence. After years of us joking about the most perfect domain name, I bought it last December and made our first post this past January. Even though we didn’t have much of a plan, things kind of snowballed from there. Branching out from our core group of founders, we got a lot of our friends to contribute articles, blurbs, lists, comments, and their voices (to our podcast). Without checking with anyone else, I decree the following to be the best content of 2014!


The State of the Modern Vampire

Our first guest contribution is also our most popular post of all time! This post was part our Vampire Academy week. What is Vampire Academy? That’s not important. Maggie took the opportunity to write about why we collectively are so into vampires and why she personally loves The Vampire Diaries. It’s a great meta-analysis of vampire fiction that clearly resonates because people come back to read it month after month.

(This is probably also a good place to mention that Maggie’s first book is coming out in 2015 and her website features a list of ways to pre-order it.)


I Was #TeamPiz Before There Were Hashtags*

Marisa wrote a piece about how a fictional character would be better off dating a boy with no baggage who was nice to her over a violent sociopath who once started a bum fighting ring. Sounds fairly noninflammatory, right? Not when the violent sociopath who once started a bum fighting ring in question is Veronica Mars’ Logan Echolls. This ended up being our most controversial piece ever as fans on tumblr caught wind. Things really took off when fans on twitter started calling Marisa a dudebro misogynist and ‘some tumblr.’ I remain unconvinced that anyone who hated the piece actually read it.


Planet of The Apes Week/Godzilla Week

We did more than just these theme weeks and a lot of people contributed, but these two were Nathaniel‘s time to shine. Jesse once referred to Godzilla and Planet of The Apes as Nathaniel’s “nerd majors” and he delivered comprehensive primers on both subjects in addition to a number of other well-researched pieces. He also did excellent work on our tumblr to correspond with both weeks.

Girls Season 3

They’re Not Paying Me At All: Am I an Unlikable Character?

When Jesse brought his friend Sara on as a contributor, she immediately set herself apart by writing some actual essays in addition to participating in our general silliness. Her first piece for tackles some fairly well-covered topics like the portrayal of women in prestige television, but with a personal spin and some angles that are rarely used. This is the part where I would paraphrase what she said, but you should just read it because she writes better than I do.


The Top 25 Belle & Sebastian Songs List

We did a lot of lists this year, and someone else might pick another list as our best one. Jesse‘s ranking of every Adam Sandler movie is not only our second most popular piece of all time, but it’s painstakingly researched (and I mean pain; he purchased and watched I Now Pronounce You Chuck And Larry). Our Hold Steady list was very similar and had a more impressive pedigree, with contributions from two people who published novels this year in addition to the film editor of The AV Club and our usual cast of characters. Our list of the best Belle & Sebastian songs stands out to me because of the passion behind it. To be a fan of Belle & Sebastian is to feel these songs in your bones and I think (hope?) this comes across in the blurbs. I always worry no one reads the blurbs, but I  can tell you I struggled with the few I wrote for this list as much as any writing I did this year (and I submitted a book proposal this year). All credit and glory for these group lists go to Jesse,  who compiles, tabulates, and edits all of them.


The Podcast

Much like the site itself, we kind of just started doing these without much of a plan. Since then, we’ve honed the format and production process into maybe the most visible part of the site. I didn’t want to choose just one because most of the episodes are full of spoilers for movies we just saw, so maybe just subscribe on iTunes and pick the ones you want to listen to.