#AMonthofFaves 2018: Favorite TV series and movies

Again today, I’m joining hosts  GirlxoxoTraveling with T and Estella’s Revenge for their annual #AMonthofFaves blog event – “a fun way to recap the year that was” with “every day of the event (Monday, Wednesday and Friday) planned out” and  a link-up on all their blogs. Today’s topic is 
 “On The Screen”.

Favorite TV series

These are some of my favorites, with some overlaps with my wife, but not all:

  • Aggretsuko
  • Alone Together
  • CSI
  • Father Ted
  • The Doctor Blake Mysteries
  • Kim’s Convenience
  • The Kominisky Method
  • Letterkenny
  • Miranda
  • Mozart in the Jungle (Season 4)
  • Psiconautas
  • Vicious

These are, or were, available on Netflix, Amazon Prime, or Hulu. The highlights for me were the two Canadian shows: Kim’s Convenience and Letterkenny. If you’re offended by language, skip Letterkenny. But if you’re not and like quirky and offbeat, then watch. Unfortunately, if you’re in America, only the first two seasons are available (so far) on Hulu. 
Also quirky and offbeat are Alone Together and  Psiconautas. The most joyous of all of them is Miranda and both Kim and I loved all of the episodes.

Favorite movies

These are our favorite movies from this year in alphabetical order:

  • Avengers: Infinity War
  • BlacKkKlansman
  • Black Panther
  • Crazy Rich Asians
  • Deadpool 2
  • Eighth Grade
  • Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle
  • Love, Simon
  • Mission Impossible: Fallout
  • Paddington 2
  • A Star is Born
  • Won’t You Be My Neighbor?

The ones I enjoyed watching the most were Deadpool 2 and Paddington 2, two movies on the opposite end of the spectrum, highlighted by this exchange on Twitter:

The ones, though, that I think were the most important were BlacKkKlansman and Won’t You Be My Neighbor?, the latter of which my wife and I cried through most of. The former solidified my love of the actor Adam Driver, whom I loved in Logan Lucky, and introduced us to a new love of John David Washington, Denzel Washington’s son, a formidable actor on his own.

What were your favorite TV series and movies that you watched this year?

#AMonthofFaves: Our Favorite Book to TV Adaptations

I’m joining hosts Girlxoxo, Traveling with T, and Estella’s Revenge for their 4th annual #AMonthofFaves blog event – “a fun way to recap the year that was” – during the month of December. Today’s topic is “Favorite Book to TV or Movie Adaptations” from this year.

My (and my wife’s) favorite, without any question was, and is:

I only read the first book in the series and made it through about a quarter of the second before giving up. I wasn’t that interested in the series, plus we don’t have HBO. However, when our library director started getting the series on DVD and a couple of coworkers started watching it and saying how good it was, we finally caved…and we fell hard. We binge-watched the first six seasons and then couldn’t wait for the seventh season to come out on DVD so we bought it on streaming.

Honorable Mention

I haven’t read the book by John Douglas and Mark Olshaker…yet, but I did buy an ebook copy that I hope to get to in the new year. My wife and I both enjoyed Season 1 of the Netflix Original series, and we look forward to seeing the second.

What were/are some of your favorite book to TV or movie adaptations from this year?

Kim’s favorite Amazon show

Bryan & Kim's FaVThe plan was every Wednesday in May, my wife Kim and I would do a post as part of a series on our favorite Netflix and Amazon Prime TV shows. The first week I picked my favorite Netflix shows; four weeks ago, Kim, her favorite Netflix shows; three weeks ago, our favorite Netflix shows, the ones we watch together; two weeks ago, my favorite Amazon Prime shows, and then last week was to be the finish with her favorite Amazon Prime shows. However, that didn’t happen with I guess the four-day holiday weekend throwing us off schedule, so here we are with…

Kim’s Favorite Amazon Show: Transparent

I must admit I was equally intrigued by and apprehensive about what this show would be. I’ve been a fan of Jeffrey Tambor since childhood, from Jeffrey Brookes III on the Ropers to George “There’s always money in the banana stand” Bluth. But I couldn’t picture him as Maura Pfefferman, a transwoman who decides that it is not too late to live her truth.

Tambor is funny, heartbreaking, and incredible. The character is not caricature and far from perfect: Maura has blind spots to navigate like everyone else in the family. And everyone else, it seems, has an equally complex journey to their authentic selves. Maura’s revelation causes each of them to reexamine their own identities and make some significant changes. Raw, funny, sad, and beautiful, this show is worth your time.

Tell us some of your favorite TV shows wherever you watch them, whether Amazon, Netflix, or other sources? What are some of your favorites? 

My favorite Amazon shows

Bryan & Kim's FaVEvery Wednesday this month, my wife Kim and I are doing a series on our favorite Netflix and Amazon Prime TV shows. The first week I picked my favorite Netflix shows; two weeks ago, Kim, her favorite Netflix shows; last week, our favorite Netflix shows, the ones we watch together. Today and next week, we finish with our favorite Amazon Prime shows: first mine today, then hers next Wednesday. 

I’ll be honest that I haven’t watched a lot on Amazon Prime, but two shows in particular do stand out:

  1. Bosch
  2. Mozart in the Jungle

Bosch

Ever since I had heard about this one, I wanted to see it, but we didn’t have Amazon Prime. (I’m not going to lie it was one of the deciding factors in getting Prime.) The Harry Bosch series by Michael Connelly is one of my favorite series ever. Connelly is directly involved with the production of the TV show and it shows, and Titus Welliver is outstanding as Bosch.

Mozart in the Jungle

Unlike Bosch, I hadn’t heard of this one, but it also is based on a book, Mozart in the Jungle: Sex, Drugs, and Classical Music by Blair Tindall, an oboist who played with the New York Philharmonic. The story centers ostensibly around Hailey Rutledge, an oboist trying to get into the New York Symphony as the series begins, but branches out to include the conductor, Rodrigo de Souza played to perfection by Gael García Bernal, and many others in the symphony, including but not limited to Bernadette Peters as Gloria Windsor, the president of the symphony, and Malcolm McDowell as Thomas Pembridge, the conductor emeritus of the symphony. All are brilliant in their roles, including newcomer Lola Kirke as Hailey (or “High-lie” as Rodrigo calls her), but most especially García Bernal, who already has won numerous deserved awards for his portrayal of the flamboyant conductor Rodrigo.  Come to this one for the music, stay for García Bernal.

So have you seen either of these? What did you think? Tell us some of your favorite TV shows wherever you watch them, whether Amazon, Netflix, or other sources? What are some of your favorites?