2016 sucked. Massively. We lost too many people who shaped my childhood to named. I have not been as ashamed of my Best Songs of the year’s list since 1999. Music was so bad last year; somehow Justin Beiber landed a Best Album nomination. Really, since music was so bad last year and so many great artists, died, the Grammy’s this year should just be a three hour tribute show. In some years, Leon Russell or Leonard Cohan would have gotten a lengthy tribute but they may just get stuffed in the In Memorium package this year as neither are in the top five this year (and that is not even counting David Bowie or Glen Frye who were paid tribute at last year’s ceremony). Oh yeah, and we also witnessed the worst presidential election in my lifetime, probably ever. Also as hit musical Hamilton taught us, at least no one is participation in duels. Instead we had dudes bragging about the size of his penis at a televised debate, bragging about being able to molest women, claiming political opponent’s father was involved in the JFK assassination, openly admitted to wanting to have sex with his daughter, promising to lock up his political opponents, and siding with Russia over our CIA. And that is just the guy that won. But as the great philosopher Adam Duritz one said, there is reason to believe that this year will be better than the last. So with that said, here are seven things to look forward to in 2017.
7. Obligatory Superhero Movie Mention: Superhero movies have been a mainstay on my Most Anticipated lists for a while now but honestly I am getting a bit worn out. I have had the Batman v. Superman blu-ray sitting on my desk for about a month now unopened, and I am two movies behind on the Marvel movies. Basically I did not watch one Superhero movie that was released in 2016. I am sure I will eventually and it may not happen this year, but eventually I am sure I will get around to watching Logan (March 3), Guardians of the Galaxy 2 (May 5), Wonder Woman (June 2), Spider-Man: Homecoming (July 7), Thor: Ragnorok (November 3), and Justice League (November 17). And really, you might as well put Star Wars: Episode VIII (December 15) in this category too.
6. Kong: Skull Island (March 10), The Mummy (June 9): Superhero’s are no longer the only films getting their own cinematic universes, now other movie studios are getting in on the action. Kong: Skull island takes place in the same universe as 2014’s Godzilla. Although that is a pretty limited universe because it is just the two large mutant animals that will not even appear on screen together until 2020. As lackluster the concept is, it is a pretty impressive cast: Tom Hiddleston, Brie Larson, Samuel L. Jackson, and John Goodman. Universal is getting a bit more ambitious, rebooting the very first shared cinematic universe with its monster movies, first up, The Mummy. If all goes well, there will also be movies featuring Frankenstein's monster (starring Javier Bardem), Count Dracula, the Wolf Man, the Creature from the Black Lagoon, the Invisible Man (starring Johnny Depp), and Bride of Frankenstein.
5. A Few Good Men Live!(?): Hiding at the bottom of NBC’s press release for their upfronts last year was one line about adapting the Aaron Sorkin play, a break from their string of live musicals. Supposedly it was coming “early 2017.” Well here we are in early 2017 and I have not heard anything about it since. NBC.com does have a page for it and it just says, “coming soon.” Hopefully they are just making sure they are getting it right and not just quietly forgotten about it because I am much more interested in it than the Jennifer Lopez starring Bye Bye Birdie.
4. The Ends of Orphan Black and Pretty Little Liars: Two show on the opposite of the quality spectrum are ending this year. After introducing one of the more adventurous ideas in television history, Orphan Black will be coming to a close. Here is hoping there is an Alison spin-off into a bad CBS sitcom. Then there is Pretty Little Liars which stretched a murder mystery further than any show before. I long ago lost track of how many different A’s there have been. And yet, I was never able to stop watching.
3. Prisoner - Ryan Adams (February 17): In the first decade of this century, Ryan Adams put out ten albums, this decade he has only put out two proper albums and none since 2014 (obviously I am not counting his Taylor Swift cover album a “proper” album. After his output last decade, three years is a long time sso hopefully he has a lot of great tunes lined up and no Rihanna covers.
2. Powerless (February 2) – The last couple years saw multiple superhero shows hit the small screen but this current season will only see one network superhero show, and that does not even star someone with powers, hence the title. (Do not fret traditional funny book fans, Legion premieres next week on FX, the ongoing Netflix shows, and ABC has already greenlighted Inhumans to premiere this fall as well as the return of Young Justice to some yet announced channel or possibly streaming service). Instead the show will follow incurrence agents living in a superhero world that sees city blocks destroyed regularly. I cannot wait to not watch this show when it gets demoted to The CW in the fall.
1. On second thought about 2017…