Saturday, December 31, 2005

The Best and Worst of 2005

The last day of the year is a time for many things. For millions, it is a time for binge drinking, followed by what I like to call “pre-regret” behavior.

For me, right now, it is a time for sharing my favorites (and some least favorites) from the year gone by.

Please note that I only rate best and worst of things I actually saw, read, heard, or experienced—The Dukes of Hazzard movie and Joel Osteen’s book, for example, will not appear below. So with no further ado …

Best movie of 2005: Batman Begins, which rescued the Batman movie franchise from itself.

Best movie of 2005, runner-up: March of the Penguins, which employed stunning cinematography to show us the good, the bad, and the ugly of this amazing species.

Worst movie of 2005: The Legend of Zorro, which was my guilty pleasure of the year despite its horrible plot and worse dialogue.

Best TV show of 2005: "Lost," which continued to surprise viewers with dramatic plot twists and hidden clues.

Best TV show of 2005, runner-up: "The Colbert Report," which had moments of genius in its spoofs of shows like “The O’Reilly Factor.”

Best blog of 2005 (general):
  • The Phoenix

  • Best blog of 2005 (music):
  • My Daily Review

  • Best blog of 2005 (music), runner-up:
  • Heavy Metal Time Machine

  • Best blog of 2005 (movies):
  • Hoosier Revue

  • Best blog of 2005 (personal):
  • Quarter Lifer

  • Best album of 2005: Steve Hackett’s Metamorpheus, which offered further proof, in the form of an orchestral concept album, that the guitarist who left Genesis in 1977 is a truly gifted artist.

    Best album of 2005, runner-up: Dream Theater’s Octavarium, which proved that progressive rock with a metal edge is still alive.

    Most catchy song of 2005: Gorillaz “Feel Good Inc.,” which to this day makes me shake my thang to its infectious groove.

    Best political play of 2005: President Bush’s nomination of Teflon-coated John Roberts.

    Worst political play of 2005: Some politicians’ calls for immediate withdrawal from Iraq.

    Best book of 2005: Elizabeth Kostova’s The Historian, which breathed fresh, literary life into the tired vampire genre.

    Best book of 2005, runner-up: The Daily Show with Jon Stewart’s America (The Book), which—although published in 2004—made me laugh through all of this year, too.

    And last but not least …

    Best blog readers of 2005: You, for visiting The Musings of David Amulet and being such a wonderful audience.

    All the best to you in 2006. Happy New Year!


    At December 31, 2005 8:16 PM, Blogger Metal Mark replied to my musings ...

    Have a Happy New Year!

    At December 31, 2005 9:03 PM, Blogger ChickyBabe replied to my musings ...

    Happy New Year, David!

    At January 01, 2006 2:39 AM, Blogger Ben Heller replied to my musings ...

    Happy New Year David!

    Can I do my acceptance speech now.

    I'd just like to say thanks to my Mum, my agent, to David Amulet for sticking with me during my difficult 3rd Album Review, to Metal Mark for keeping me on my toes, and to all the Bloggers who kept faith.

    I'm proud to accept this award for the Mydailyreview site, but it really wouldn't be possible without some great albums to wax lyrical about, and some awful albums to laugh at.


    Ben Heller

    Now where's the cheque David ?

    At January 01, 2006 10:36 AM, Blogger :P fuzzbox replied to my musings ...

    Happy New Year and here's hoping that the best outnumbers the worst in the coming year.

    At January 01, 2006 9:34 PM, Blogger BuffyICS replied to my musings ...

    I have to agree with you on your selection of Batman Begins as the best movie of the year, although if Legend of Zorro was the worst movie you had to watch then you are extremely lucky! I'm going to check out The Historian--gotta love the vampire genre.

    And thanks for the best movie blog award! I'm honored to receive it!

    At January 02, 2006 12:16 AM, Blogger The Phoenix replied to my musings ...

    Thanks so much for your kind words, and I too am honored for receiving such recognition.

    I've only been blogging since August, yet I feel like I've learned so much from my fellow bloggers like yourself.

    Thanks for visiting, and here's to an even better 2006!

    At January 02, 2006 12:55 PM, Anonymous Brian replied to my musings ...

    Thanks for the list David! Always looking for new things to check out (although I can already second your nomination of "Batman Begins").

    Happy New Year!

    At January 02, 2006 6:52 PM, Blogger Laurie replied to my musings ...

    A Dream Theater fan? Don't see too many of those around. They definitely rock, I saw them here in Detroit a few years back.

    At January 03, 2006 7:37 AM, Blogger David Amulet replied to my musings ...

    Thanks, everyone, for the good wishes.

    Ben: The check/cheque (damn those language barriers) is in the mail. Given the effiency of the US and UK post, I expect you should receive it by New Year's Day 2007.

    Buffy: If you buy and start reading The Historian today, you might have it finished by 2007. It's a massive tome.

    Brian: I hope you enjoy the archives here. And the new year. Nice to have you with us.

    Laurie: Dream Theater, though disjointed a bit too often for my taste, is about the best band making new, complex music. I'm glad you approve! If you like DT, I'm sure you'd also like the 1970s albums by Rush--check them out!

    -- david

    At January 03, 2006 10:23 AM, Blogger Marissa replied to my musings ...

    Fantastic list! Happy, happy New Year to you!

    At January 03, 2006 10:43 AM, Blogger Laurie replied to my musings ...

    David - I love Rush music (old and new), and I like them better than DT. Neil Peart is the best drummer that ever lived, imho.. :-)

    At January 03, 2006 11:38 AM, Blogger Perplexio replied to my musings ...

    Dream Theater is fantastic! Although, I tend to agree that their more recent albums are a bit more "disjointed" than their older material (Awake, Images & Words, Metropolis Pt. 2: Scenes From a Memory all come to mind) but I still dig them and their side projects (especially Liquid Tension Experiment and OSI). I also really dig Kevin Moore's post Dream Theater work as Chroma Key.

    And Steve Hackett-- I couldn't agree more. He's easily one of the most underrated and overlooked guitarists out there. I'm always trying to turn more of my friends on to his fantastic music. I still maintain that he, not Peter Gabriel, is what made Genesis great. After all, even after Peter Gabriel left, Genesis put out 2 more great albums-- A Trick of the Tail and Wind & Wuthering. It was only with Hackett's arrival with the Nursery Cryme album that Genesis started to come into their own and only after his departure that they started their decline.

    At January 03, 2006 12:23 PM, Blogger David Amulet replied to my musings ...

    Laurie: If you like DT and Rush, then (per Perplexio and me) you'd probably love old Genesis--when Phil was just rocking on the drums instead of crooning ballads. I recommend Nursery Cryme, Foxtrot, or Selling England by the Pound.

    May 2006 bring us a DT tour, a new Rush album and tour, and a Genesis reunion that surpasses our expectations!

    -- david

    At January 03, 2006 1:04 PM, Blogger Jill replied to my musings ...

    I totally agree with Batman Begins, and I've been meaning to read The Historian for months now. Thanks for visiting my blog, and best of wishes for 2006!

    At January 03, 2006 1:54 PM, Blogger Jake replied to my musings ...

    I agree with most of your movie and tv awards. I would respectfully submit, however, that The Office deserves, at the very least, an honorable mention for best show.

    At January 03, 2006 2:12 PM, Blogger David Amulet replied to my musings ...

    Jill: Good luck with The Historian--make sure you have a good chunk of time to start it because it takes a few dozen pages to get into its swing.

    Jake: My caveat on all the selections was that I had to witness them myself, and I have yet to see "The Office." Maybe I'll do the season-long DVD collection to catch up with you!

    -- david

    At January 03, 2006 2:17 PM, Blogger Perplexio replied to my musings ...

    Laurie: I just had to pipe in and 2nd David's recommendations for old school Genesis. ESPECIALLY Selling England By the Pound! I'd also recommend A Trick of the Tail and Wind & Wuthering... and if you happen to enjoy those, I'd also recommend Steve Hackett's Voyage of the Acolyte actually sounds like a "lost" Genesis album and features Tony Banks, Mike Rutherford, and Phil Collins all lending their helping hands.

    At January 03, 2006 4:24 PM, Blogger garthalgar187 replied to my musings ...

    Happy New Year Dude!

    Nice going on the Dream Theater...

    You should also check out Freakonomics by Stephen Levitt, if you havn't has a wonderful economic perspective on ridiculous topics and a great online blog too!


    At January 04, 2006 9:11 PM, Blogger Kinky Poe replied to my musings ...

    Wow, I got you to take my tag (which in principal I agree with you on) AND I'm your fave personal blog.

    I feel like such a rock star right now!


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