Reggie’s Top 10 Non-Metal Entertaining Things of 2013

10.  Tomb Raider (2013) (Xbox 360)

I pretty much gave up hope of playing Tomb Raider ever again because it basically got watered down and uninventive.    But when you throw 2013 into the new title it led me to believe the game was given a reboot.  My suspicions were correct, the 2013 version was more polished, interactive, and played more like an adventure game that gave me choices that affected the ending.  Though the puzzle solving aspect wasn’t as involved as the first couple of games, the developers didn’t lose sight of that which is good.  There are some challenging obstacles for Lara to get through.  They did add more bad guys that Lara would have to deal with and added numerous cinematic scenes for a thorough storyline.  If developers can keep this style of Tomb Raider on track, they’ll get me back in.  I guess technically I am back in because I am waiting for another new game.

9.  The World’s End

When I saw a trailer for The World’s End it looked stupid, but interesting at the same time.  I forgot all about it until I saw it for rent in iTunes…yes, iTunes.  My wife and I had a blast watching this uniquely quirky movie.  Silliness doesn’t always equate stupidity.  This formula worked and made this comedy quite an enjoyable experience.  I also like the British humor in it as well; something I can relate to.

8.  World War Z (Book)

I like how the entire story is made up of people’s personal stories from around the world.  They tell their perspective of the war and the virus.  Sometimes those stories intertwine which is cool because you get multiple standpoints of one particular account.  I wanted to see the movie and I heard the movie had basically nothing to do with the novel, therefore, I wanted to read it first so I would understand the basic story line, which really isn’t that hard…virus, zombies, war.  Though the way it’s written would make for a cool documentary, the movie revolves around one main protagonist which had to be added in Hollywood style.  You don’t need to read the book to see the movie, but in the end I recommend reading the book since it is formatted well and tells a cool story.  The movie clip below is from the movie…kind of hard to find book clips.  This one will have to do.

7.  Dishonored (Xbox 360)

Dishonored is a videogame that took me by surprise.  My kids picked it up for my birthday and not only did I thoroughly enjoy it, they enjoyed watching me play the game – male bonding in the 21st Century.  They liked to help me be stealthy on my missions.  From the story to the game mechanics, there really wasn’t anything wrong with this game.  The game even responded to your actions.  If you were stealthy and clean on your quests, the city would remain virtually free of (zombie-diseased) thugs.  If you were careless and cruel, pesky rats and the plague would spread, thus increasing the likelihood of aforementioned zombie thugs.  Dishonored made you think about your actions and apply critical thinking concepts.  Ha, sounds like something I always wanted to tell my mother when she complained about my gaming habits as a kid. Now, if I could have only made money playing games…

6.  Zero Dark Thirty

It’s interesting when you can watch a movie, know exactly what the outcome will be because it was world-wide news, and still be on the edge of your seat watching it all play out.  It shows the level of directing talent in Kathryn Bigelow.  She did a great job of detailing the events leading up to the ending of the movie which I am sure you know what happened.  I have no doubts that the treatment of prisoners in the movie was accurate…and was disturbing to watch.  These are the things you don’t see on news networks.  She probably had reliable sources and when all assembled into a movie, it turned out superbly.

5.  Doctor Who Series 7

I am very late coming into the Doctor Who experience.  My wife and kids are all fans and they finally lured me it.  I like the goofy sci-fi stuff in the show and I like that they can bend/change the rules whenever they want.  Series 7 saw the current traveling companions Amy and her husband leave and enter Claire.  I also geeked out with the family and saw the series 7 movie.  I bought advance tickets and despite trying to arrive early enough we were forced into the front break-neck section of the theater because apparently there are bigger geeks than us in the world.  The seats weren’t that bad, but the creators managed, through the use of CGI and real actors, to get all the Doctors into this movie and leave a tiny detail of who the next doctor will be.  We all know the actor, but when they showed a clip of his eyes, the geek factor in the audience went kind of nuts.  Both 50th anniversary special move and the series were fun to watch.  I am hooked.  The new doctor will appear in this year’s Christmas special.

4.  Bioshock Infinite (Xbox 360)

I had a feeling this game was going to make my Top 10 list this year before I even played it.  The first game was great, the second was more of the same, and for the third installment of this whacked out series the developers took it to a new level (literally) instead of recreating the wheel.  If I ever have a chance to meet one of the developers I would probably ask WTF is going through their mind to come up with some of these concepts.  There’s nothing like a religious-infused story in a floating city at the turn of the 20th Century.  Everything about this game is extremely detailed and while you play you will be constantly scratching your head asking “did that just really happen?”

3.  Breaking Bad Season 5 (season finale)

Breaking Bad was quite an intriguing and very well-written story.  The worst thing about it is that it only lasted five seasons.  I guess if you have to go out, go out on top.  From the first episode to the last, Walt undergoes an amazing transformation from science teacher to drug lord.  As I watched the series unfold, I could never imagine the story being written any other way or that I wished things happened differently.  The end was fitting not only in Walt’s case, but for all the characters in the story.  I was pretty much on the edge of my seat up to the final episode. A must see if you have heard about this series.

2.  Dexter Season 8 (season finale)

I can guarantee one thing; Dexter will not be on my list of favorite non-metal things next year.  The eighth and final season concluded this year and I won’t give you any spoilers in case you haven’t seen it.  It was a good season, I liked that Hannah McKay came back into Dexter’s life and it was a bummer that one of the main characters had to die (I won’t say who).  I can’t say I agree with Dexter Morgan’s fate at the end of the last episode, but I also can’t say that I am upset at how it all worked out in the end.  It all seemed fitting when it wrapped this year.  Of course, I had to wait until it became available for download, but it was worth the wait and quite difficult to avoid facebook chit chat about the show, but I managed.  Dexter’s fate was a surprise to me.  Dexter will go down as one of my Top 10 favorite television series of all-time.

1.  Gone Girl (Book)

This is the first time a novel makes my #1 slot for things non-metal.  Unlike the other entertaining things on my list, this book provided only about 3 days of entertainment since that’s about how long it took to read.  When I come across a good book, it’s hard to put down.  Gone Girl was especially hard to put down because of the way the story was presented and the head-scratching things that happened in the book.  The first half of the story is Nick’s point of view while the second half of the book focused on his wife’s standpoint.  What’s amazing is how author Gillian Flynn intertwined one main story line from two different perspectives without missing the most miniscule detail.  I won’t get into spoilers, but it seemed like on just about every page there was a WTF moment and an ending I did not see coming.  I heard there is a movie in the works.  I hope they don’t screw it up.

Here are some other things I enjoyed that didn’t make my list. I watched the first half of The Walking Dead.  Though I thoroughly enjoy this zombie show, the first half of this season didn’t really go anywhere and then the Governor reared his ugly mug again.  Of course, that had to be dealt with which was more like a rehash of season 3.  I look forward to the second half of the season where I hope the show progresses possibly outside the prison to a new location.  I didn’t get to see the third season of Game of Thrones.  I am sure that would have made my list, but HBO is taking their sweet time releasing it to DVD or download.  I haven’t seen American Horror Story Season 2, but if it’s anything like the first I am sure it will be pretty cool.  I also caught wind of a new show called The Following, featuring Kevin Bacon.  It has sort of a feel of the show 24 where it’s fairly fast-paced, but throw in some Silence of the Lambs and you have a creepy fast-paced show.  The story moves forward quickly and lots of people die.  I am about half way through the season as of this writing.  Lastly, I started watching Revolution this year.  I caught up on season 1 and watched season 2 to where it is on hiatus for the winter.  I am attracted to post-apocalyptic shows.  Though it is cheesy sci-fi from time to time, it is made by the creators of Lost and things are starting to take a bit of an unnatural turn through the use of nanotechnology.  Think of Lost combined with something Michael Crichton would write.  I think there were some weak points from season 1 that creators took to heart and worked to make the story more intriguing this season.  It seems to be working and picking up some steam.  Whenever I have the chance or remember to, I still watch The Big Bang Theory and Modern Family.  Lastly, the actual honorable mention goes to Django Unchained.  Just brilliant.  If you like Christoph Waltz (Inglorious Basterds), this is a must see.  ‘Nuff said about that.

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About Reggie

Just a dude writing a heavy metal blog and always on the prowl for a cool metal show. I am also a family man...first and foremost!

Posted on December 31, 2013, in Best of 2013, Metal Lists and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. Very nice list. I’m saving mine for tomorrow but a few of these made my list as well. I have to say The World’s End was everything I wanted it to be.

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