Thursday, January 5, 2017

Favorites of 2016

So... it's been a little while. I've been doing twenty million different things and none of them ended up being this blog. But, I've always done rankings of my favorite things each year, and I wanted to keep that trend alive. That being said, after evaluating all the things that I ranked last year, I found myself at a bit of an impasse.

Last year, I ranked my overall favorite movies, musicians, albums, songs, TV shows, YouTubers, and BookTubers as well as my favorite albums and songs of 2015. When I looked back, I realized that my overall/all-time favorites haven't changed much if at all, so it seemed a bit ridiculous to re-rank everything. As for the favorites of the year, I realized that in my iTunes library, I only have 3 CDs from 2016 in my iTunes. And while I liked them, it didn't feel like enough to merit a whole ranking. And then I had to consider the new songs of 2016 and I couldn't even think of any off the top of my head. So, I'm just combining the two into one post and adding other favorites of the year into the mix.

Favorite New TV Show of 2016:
Stranger Things

This may be the most obvious answer ever because everyone loved Stranger Things, but I got SO obsessed. It was so good and I watched the entirety of the show in a day. After watching the first episode, I got hooked and watched the entirety of the show without doing anything else in between. I watch a ton of reality shows and very few scripted shows but this one completely stole my heart and I ended up watching it another two times over the following weeks and months. 

Despite the fact that there were new seasons of some of my favorite shows like Project Runway, Rupaul's Drag Race, and Big Brother, Stranger Things was the show that really grabbed me this year. 

Favorite New CD of 2016:
A Pentatonix Christmas by Pentatonix

Like I said earlier in the post, there wasn't really very much competition for the best CD of the year, but as always, Pentatonix was incredibly impressive. I actually didn't jump on this immediately upon its release, because I don't really listen to a bunch of Christmas music. However, once I started listening to it, I couldn't stop. It was so good! The standouts for me are their cover of Kanye's song, Coldest Winter, their cover of Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays by NSYNC, and their version of Up on the Housetop. However, the entire CD is really great. And those three songs are also probably my favorite songs of the year. 

The other two CDs that I have from this year were Panic! at the Disco's "Death of a Bachelor" CD and Parachute's "Wide Awake" CD. Both of them were good, but I definitely haven't had them on replay like with A Pentatonix Christmas.

Favorite New Song of 2016:
Bad 4 Us by Superfruit

I said above that the songs from A Pentatonix Christmas were probably my favorites of the year, which is mostly because I didn't listen to a ton of new music this year. But in terms of newly released songs, this is definitely my favorite. I played this constantly for a solid month after its release. I nearly forgot about it because it's Superfruit (Scott and Mitch from Pentatonix) on YouTube rather than one of my favorite bands or a song from a new CD this year. I love this song so much. 

Favorite Pre-2016 TV Show:
The Genius

For the pre-2016 choices, I'm going with things that I discovered in 2016 that didn't come out in 2016.
This one squeaked in there riiiiight at the end of the year but oh boy did it make an impact. The Genius is a reality game show made in South Korea. I discovered it through listening to Rob Has a Podcast, and I checked out the first episode back in the summer. It was great, but I didn't watch past episode 1 until the last week of the year. Although I loved episode 1 the first time through, it resonated a lot more the second time I watched it and I ended up binge-watching the entirety of the season. I didn't finish the season until after the beginning of 2017, but I watched a good chunk of the season in 2016. This show is absolutely amazing and so smart. I can't wait to see the other three seasons, because I've gotten obsessed.

Favorite Pre-2016 CD:
The Walking In Between by Ben Rector
 Technically, I didn't discover The Walking in Between in 2016. I listened to it quite a while back, but I just listened to it on Spotify and then forgot it existed. And then I re-discovered it in 2016 and actually downloaded and played it on repeat. This may not have been my most listened to CD of the year, but it was really high up there. And the songs on this CD all kinda count as my favorite pre-2016 songs. 

The CD I listened to the most this year was probably Astoria by Marianas Trench, which came out in 2015. I first listened to it when it came out, but I severely underestimated it. I fell in love with it in 2016, to the point that I really wanted to put it here, but I did discover it in 2015 so I unfortunately couldn't. It did appear on my favorite CDs of 2015 list, which you can check out here.

Favorite Podcast I Discovered in 2016:
The Black Tapes

2016 was definitely the year of the podcast for me. I'd dabbled in podcasts before 2016, but only minimally (notably, listening to Rob Has a Podcast's Big Brother coverage). However, at the end of 2015 was when I first started listening to fictional podcasts and by the beginning of 2016, I went full force into the world of podcasts. The Black Tapes was the new discovery that I fell in love with the most. (However, I will say that I fell head over heels for Limetown with like 2 days left in 2015)

The Black Tapes is an incredibly creepy but engrossing podcast that is super unique and really interesting. It's not my absolute favorite podcast ever (that honor still goes to Rob Has a Podcast) but it's definitely the best one that I discovered in 2016. 

So... that's all I have for my favorites of 2016. It's a bit of a hot mess of a list, but that describes my 2016 pretty well. This list has made me realize that I didn't listen to much new music this year, and I think that this is largely because of the vast amount of podcast listening that I've been doing on my commute to school/work. 

If you're looking for my favorite books of 2016 (given that I make BookTube videos), I promise, it's coming! As with the last couple years, I'm going to be ranking every 2016 read on my blog, and I'm going to be doing end of the year videos on my YouTube channel as well. Patience, young Padawan.

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