Trevor Noah: Son of Patricia
Oh my lord; talk about laughing until you cry! Trevor Noah outdoes himself in this stand-up segment. The jokes are poignant, relevant, a bit on the head but it gets you laughing. He still talks about racism, politics, and growing up in South Africa, but he does it in a new way that may have a link to his past shows. However, since his jokes stem from his life experiences, it’s a new perspective. He builds on his earlier Netflix show and his book. What I loved about the show is how he broke down his main joke. By the end, you know he prepared his audience for his best joke by presenting the different parts earlier without making the connection obvious. This tactic made the jokes much more special and fun! Go and watch it on Netflix! You won’t be sorry!
The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina
When tasked with coming up with a Christmas themed staff pick, I was stumped for what to choose. With the exception of a very few classics from my childhood – and, of course, Die Hard – I don’t actually like Christmas movies. Luckily, The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina dropped a Christmas episode just in time to save me from having to watch The Christmas Chronicles or some Hallmark movie starring Candace Cameron Bure.
The episode, titled A Midwinter’s Tale, creates a nice bridge between the end of season 1 and the next season coming in April. Sabrina, now out of the witch closet to her friends, wants to include them in her family’s midwinter celebrations, which they decline, only to have their own supernatural adventure. Meanwhile, Sabrina decides to have a seance to contact her mother, who she discovered has been in limbo all this time. I’d always found that a weird loose end; she finds her mother in limbo, and then never mentions it again. In this episode, we finally get to see her deal with it, in her particular Sabrina way.
Sabrina’s Christmas episode is a perfect antidote to the bombardment of schmaltzy Christmas shows and movies vying for the attention of our eyeballs, as well as doing a great job of continuing the story and whetting our appetites for more Sabrina to come in the spring.
Color Your Own by Marvel
As the year is coming to an end, the days are getting shorter, and the night’s getting longer; snow covers the landscape. It should be a contemplative time, reflecting on the past months and preparing for the coming year. What do we want to do – what things achieve? Yet the days before Christmas and Silvester tend to have a hectic nature. Though I like to occasionally throw myself into the mix with all the other people in shopping centers, at the end of the day, it is good to relax at home with a nice cup of tea.
A few days ago I discovered a new app, that I enjoy: Color Your Own by Marvel. You can find hundreds of inked pages of characters and comic art, that are just waiting for a passionate fan to splash some color on them. But it’s not just an excellent way to let your imagination fly, but also makes you appreciate colorists more and all their decisions of colors and hues. The app offers a lot of options regarding colors, pencils, patterns and how you want to draw in general.
Though the app is made with love to details, it is based on a subscription service with weird prices. You can either pay about 5€/week, 6€/month or 25€/year. I don’t recommend the 7-day free trial (it starts the weekly subscription). Instead, invest the 6€ and have fun for at least a month. It is definitely worth it.
Marvel’s Daredevil (#227-233) Born Again
What better way to celebrate the holiday than with a Santa Claus-related stabbing? My pick for this week is the Born Again saga from Marvel’s Daredevil (#227-233). Written by Frank Miller, with art from David Mazzucchelli, this Bronze Age comic from 1986 finds Matt Murdock cast out into the unforgiving New York streets at Christmas. Framed by Kingpin for crimes he did not commit, kicked out of his home by his landlord, and abandoned by friends and allies, Murdock nears death as a thief dressed as Santa Claus stabs him in the chest. He rises from the proverbial grave with the help of his mother, Maggie, to clear his name, defeat an impersonator, and vanquish Nuke. Laden with Christian themes and imagery, the Born Again arc depicts Murdock as a Christ-like figure who ‘rises’ from the dead a wiser superhero.
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-verse
My pick this week is Spider-Man into the Spider-Verse. I loved everything about this film: from the animation to the music, Easter eggs, and the characterizations of the different Spider-people. While they were all similar, I found they each had different personalities. But more than that, it was refreshing how this was a Miles Morales origin story rather than yet another Peter-Parker-let-the-robber-get-away-and-kill-Uncle-Ben-With-Great-Power-Comes-yady yada. Now I’m waiting for them to release a Spider-man Christmas album.