Wondering what to do with your upcoming free time? Good thing we have some suggestions for what you should be watching, playing, reading, listening to, etc.
Ben’s Miniseries Pick: Stephen King’s Storm of the Century – Seeing as I hadn’t seen Storm of the Century in quite a long while, I was very pleased to see that, not only does it hold up, but it holds up well, securing its spot as one of my favorite Stephen King stories to ever grace the screen, big or small. There are one or two nonsensical choices certain characters make, but overall there really isn’t much to make me love the miniseries any less this time around. The entire cast is solid or better, with Colm Feore’s stellar performance helping to turn the unsettlingly insightful Andre Linoge into one of the most memorable villains of the past twenty-five years. There’s also tons of tension, genuine horror, and an eerie atmosphere throughout the story surrounding Little Tall Island’s ominous visitor, all leading to one hell of a final act that is liable to stick with you long after it’s over.
Ben’s Video Game Pick: God of War (2005) – A few weeks after finishing up God of War: Ragnorök‘s campaign, I decided to revisit the game that started it all, the original God of War. It may have been overshadowed by most of its sequels, but the beginning of Kratos’ long journey of dealing death to deities is still one of my favorite hack-n-slash action titles, with most of the original trilogy’s best qualities present even in its earliest entry. The combat is brutal, and there’s no shortage of options to dismantle your enemies via magical abilities or stylish, bladed instruments of death, and it gets even crazier during boss fights; the big bad encounters are among the very best in gaming, still feeling as epic as they did nearly twenty years ago. Kratos, while certainly a one-note character, is interesting enough to retain your attention as the story slowly unveils his past with Ares and the catalyzing event that motivates the Spartan to see the Greek god meet an untimely and grisly end. This version of the Ghost of Sparta is so over the top, almost comically powerful and violent, that it’s kind of weird to imagine him becoming the older version seen in the Norse-set games, but I thoroughly enjoyed the trip down memory lane nonetheless.
Lauren’s Video Game Pick: Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order – I have something to admit: I tried playing this game years ago, and as much as I enjoyed force pushing stormtroopers off ledges and bisecting insectoids with my lightsaber as good boy Cal (a Jedi Padawan forced out of hiding post the genocidal Order 66), the undead Nightsisters of Dathomir and their affinity for swarming in a game that can already be somewhat unforgiving combat wise as it draws comparisons to Soulsborne games had me requesting the Death Star do its thing on the entirety of the planet. It was never my intention to shelve JFO, as frustrated as I was at the time, but I’ll admit I allowed myself to be distracted until eventually it felt too late to return to the game without having to start over. Which I now have done thanks to the proximity of the sequel’s release. My update? Dathomir is still a shithole of a time and the 3D maps of the incredibly well designed levels are as overwhelming as ever, but the gameplay is still as satisfying as it is challenging (when you’re not at the middle of a mosh pit of pinwheeling zombie arms, that is). And the characters… I love them all so much. I may hate Dathomir, but it does get one point for giving me my favorite character in Nightsister Mirren, an intimidating necromancer who has an unexpectedly playful side that better be on full display in the sequel (she wasn’t in the trailer and that has me concerned); and the game on the whole gets a major point for giving me one of my all time favorite Star Wars villains in The Second Sister (I realize I’m only a “has seen all the movies and would die for Grogu” fan and not deep in the Star Wars trenches, so my villains list may be shorter than many, but whatever she’s still the best). The push and pull between the light and dark sides of the force is on full display in Jedi: Fallen Order, making it such an interesting, character driven story, and well worth the time of any gamer, no matter the depth of their Star Wars fandom.
So what do you think about these picks? What content did we miss over the past two weeks while we were spending time with these? Be sure to leave a comment below letting us know about everything (both current and simply new to you) you’ve been consuming lately!
And while you’re here, be sure to check some of the site’s other recent content:
- Ben’s year end lists on his favorite movies, TV shows, and video games.
- Grant’s year end lists on his favorite music and podcasts.
- Jon’s year end lists on his favorite albums, as well as concert reviews for Norma Jean and Foxing.
- Lauren’s reviews for the newly streaming films Black Adam and The Invitation.