Sunday, January 2, 2011

Year in Review: 2010

And just like that, we're back to writing up a Year in Review post, wherein we'll tell you all how great we are (or, I should say, were)--both as writers and as men--by creating a "Best of" list. Sure, it's arrogant and self-serving, but hey. That's just part of our growing Internet Fame.

Just wait until you see the limo.

Speaking of this year's posts (I know, that was a horrible transition--but you try writing about the stuff we write about all year, and see if you're not exhausted come January), I wanted to say that, while I may have won the great Resolutions Challenge of 2010 (or whatever name I gave it yesterday), Nathaniel definitely won the Best Blogger Award for the year.

Whereas my posts were rushed and not very well thought out, Nathaniel kept things professional here by making sure that our high personal standards for this blog were met. And he did so in spades. He stepped up and ensured that our number of readers climbed throughout the year. Personally, I think 2010 was Nathaniel's strongest year so far, and honestly, choosing my 7 favorite posts of his is going to be difficult.

For him, choosing my 7 best posts should be pretty simple. Slim pickings, really.

Still, as always, I had a blast writing and I'm looking forward to kicking Ewok butt in 2011. So, without further pandering, we present the Best of Exfanding, 2010. Keep in mind that the posts are in no particular order, other than when we stumbled upon them/remembered they were written.

Oh, and as an extra-special side note, Nathaniel will not be participating in the "Best of" list today, mostly because his computer was taken down by some kind of nasty virus (possibly the Snow Widget, though it's still too early to determine what/who the culprit is).

So today's fare will be pretty one-sided, and what I say goes. [Nathaniel's note: My computer got better, but I'm really enjoying how Alex is doing all the work for me; I'll just put an asterisk next to the items I voted for, too.] So, um. Enjoy.

Alex's Favorite Posts by Nathaniel:

1. Mega Man Marathon: 1-10 in 2010* - This one makes me happy for a couple of reasons. First off, it was a great post, and exactly what this blog is all about. Or, at least, what we intended the blog to be about when he came up with the thing. Also, it was epically epic. Second, I remember how excited Nathaniel was going into that weekend, and how much work was actually involved in pulling it off. Kudos, sir.

2. Comics Cooldown - On the surface, you'd think that this one would never make my list of favorites. But, despite the fact that we might be losing a member of the fanboy legion, I appreciated the honesty of the post. And, even though he's only read comics for a couple of years, I think Nathaniel hits upon a lot of points that even the longest tenured fans have to agree with.

3. ...and suddenly, Halloween is fun again. - This one I dig so much because I'm a fan of irony. This past Halloween, I didn't really get the chance to do anything uniquely Halloween-ish, but that was okay, because Nathaniel--who hates the holiday--did.

4. What I Learned from the Atari 2600 - Because of its excess amounts of Awesome.

5. How I Got Into Gaming* - This one's essential Exfanding reading. [Nathaniel sez: "Agreed!"]

6. Big Life Stuff - I like when we write about things that have nothing to do with capes, dragons, or Mega Men. And "Life Stuff" is my favorite topic to write and to read about, especially when it's Good Life Stuff.

7. What If the Empire Never Struck Back?* - Possibly my favorite post of the year.

Honorable Mention: J.J. Abrams, Please Stop Killing People - Best title to a post we've ever had.

Man, but could I go on and on...I'll stop here, but only with reluctance. Actually, ya know what? I'll cheat. Add this one to the list, too.

Alex's Favorite Posts by Alex:

1. The Thrill of the Hunt - I like this one for no other reason than it was plain fun to write, and to think about the days spent chasing that stupid, wonderful book.

2. An Introduction to Book Collecting: Book Hunting NYC - This one was fun, and it served as one of my very few actual Exfanding posts. So, yay.

3. Comic Shop News - Because it reminds me why I love these things I love.

4. Hack Attack - Sure, Jeph Loeb doesn't need anyone to stand up for him, but I was still happy to do it.

5. The One I've Been Avoiding* - It felt good getting that out, and I'm very happy I wrote this follow up.

6. The Critic - Because nobody messes with my funny books.

7. Exfanding Review: Firefly and Serenity - This was the culmination of my favorite experiment in fandom exposure. I really fell in love with this series and film, and it's something I know I'll return to soon.

Honorable Mention: BookExpo 2010! - Because of the Neil Gaiman/french fries story. Oh, and I should also mention On Two Years because...well. Because.

Nathaniel's Favorite Posts by Alex:

1. Alex's New Year's Resolutions...[for Nathaniel] - This was such a delightfully absurd way to usher in the New Year, and the pictures still make me laugh.

2. Good Things - The well-told story of a memorable, milestone day in Exfanding history.

3. Exfanding Review: WWII in HD - My late grandfather was a World War II vet, so I have a great deal of respect for those who served, and a strong appreciation for the stories they've told. This post was unexpected, descriptive, and thoughtful enough to win me over.

4. Random Sunday Linking - Aside from the fact that I've been begging Alex for the better part of a year to rename this post to something more descriptive (which is a bonus resolution for Alex this year--minimize the number of posts containing the words "Random," "Sunday," and "Linking"), this out-of-the-blue post about coffee (which I don't drink) is somehow one of my favorites. We're here to share and discuss our favorite fandoms, and coffee certainly fits the bill.

5. Because I'm Not Batman - A bluntly honest, tell-it-like-it-is post that provides some valuable insights about my favorite co-blogger, which puts a lot of his other posts into perspective.

6. Why Bookstores Are Like A T-Rex - Thought-provoking, engaging, and full of things I might say if I ever wrote about bookstores.

Honorable Mention: (Two can play at this game!) Random Sunday Posting - Aside from being a nice reminder of that bonus resolution I just mentioned, this was one of the most stupidly amusing things we had on the blog all year.

Nathaniel's Favorite Posts by Nathaniel:

1. Nathaniel's New Year's Resolutions...[for Alex] - Even when I write things that other people consider to be funny, it's not often I write something that makes me laugh every time I read it.

2. One of my votes also goes to the Mega Man Marathon that Alex mentioned above, but I'd like to add the follow-up reflection to my vote, because it's really only a separate post because reading all of that in one sitting is hazardous to your health.

3. Confronting Your (Star Trek) Nemesis - This was one of my most personally meaningful posts, as it finally allowed me to come to terms with one of the biggest shortfalls of my favorite fandom.

4. I Want My Obscure Fandom Back - After two years of watching my favorite fandoms go mainstream for all the wrong reasons, I finally take a stand.

5. Game Over; Party Perished; Thou Art Dead - A subject that'd been on my mind for a while, which came together rather cohesively on electronic paper.

Honorable Mentions: Exfanding Review: Crystalis (GBC) - The review I'd been wanting to write of a game I've been wanting to play for about a decade; and Alien: Science-Fearction - The first full-blown Exfanding post the blog had seen in months, and one that I'd been wanting to write since Year One.

[Okay, Alex, you can have your post back.]

And now, because Nathaniel wanted to come up with a few extra categories, I present the following:

Favorite Joint Post:

Alex: This one's easy--our two-part New York Comic Con Recap. It marked the first time your friendly neighborhood Exfanders attended a con together, and geekdom hasn't been the same since.

Nathaniel: Ah, but let's not forget that our mission to expose ourselves to the films of Akira Kurosawa culminated in our viewing of Seven Samurai, which occurred just barely on this side of 2010. I think the post does a fine job of simultaneously showcasing our writing and putting a neat little bow on one of the most fun and educational blog projects we've ever had.

Favorite Possible Coolest Picture on the Internet:

Favorite Photo of a Normal-Sized Man Holding a Hilariously Sized Book:

Favorite Image of a Floating Grant Morrison:

And, Finally, Best Thing on the Blog in 2010:

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