Geeks Unleashed’s Top Twenty Comics of 2012 (10-6)

Continuing from yesterdays second installment of the Top Twenty Comics of 2012, we’ve got the third part for you:

10. Think Tank

Science, in comics, is undergoing somewhat of a renaissance what with the excellent The Manhattan Projects and now Think Tank, the cover of which warns reader’s it’ll make them smarter. Dr. David Loren, maths whizz and indirect mass murderer, is almost unlikable, however, remains sympathetic, whilst devious and is one of Top Cow/Image’s best new characters. Momentum has built nicely throughout the series and is now a must for the comic fan. I’m hopeful that the series is a soapbox for Hawkins – a commentary on the ills of science and the military-industrial-government complex. Ekedal’s art amazes and excitingly, the series has been expanded to run for at least 10 issues! (JL)

think-tank-2-cover
Think Tank #2 © Top Cow

9. Punk Rock Jesus

Punk Rock Jesus, by Sean Gordon Murphy, should have won our ‘Comic of the Week’ accolade more. The fact it didn’t displays what a strong year it’s been for comics. It’s inclusion in the Top 10 is more than justified. Punk Rock Jesus takes place in a not too distant, but all too recognisable future. Reality television has reached it’s twisted, (un)natural apogee in J2, a program featuring the first human clone, created using the DNA of Jesus Christ, taken from the Shroud of Turin. It eschews triteness, unlike America’s Got Powers. A modernist revisionism of the Book of Revelations. Murphy, you have a new discipline.  (JL)

Punk Rock © DC Comics
Punk Rock © DC Comics

8. The Manhattan Projects

Jonathan Hickman has fictionalised and re-imagined (an intelligent What If? if you will) The Manhattan Project (a research a development programme by the US, UK and Canda that produced the atomic bomb during World War II) with pseudo-science and created the strongest opening arc since Y: The Last Man. Such was its strength I immediately ran out and bought The Red Wing (Hickman and Nick Pitarra’s previous collaboration). Incredibly inventive with the potential to be epic. For lovers of history, science fiction and comics in general – this is another title for your monthly ‘pull list’. And if you are like me, it’ll be atop your stack every month. (JL)

The Manhattan Projects #7 © Image Comics
The Manhattan Projects #7 © Image Comics

7. Mind the Gap

Mind the Gap is the television series that’s not a television series, initially Jim McCann had this comic planned as a television series but the long and the short of it is that this has been translated into a comic which McCann describes as a mix between “The X-Files” and “Twin Peaks,” strangely enough this reads like it should be a television series. The Series revolves around Elle who is attacked in a subway and now lies in a hospital coma. While her body is lying in a hospital bed, her spirit has the ability to jump into other peoples bodies who are also in comas. Whilst all of this is going on the mystery of who attacked Elle is unraveling around her family and friends. With each issue the mystery takes another turn with questions piling up. Despite the growing mystery this remains on the most intriguing and compelling books on the stands. Jim McCann with art by Rodin Esquejo have created a fantastic mystery complimented with stunning art work. The first trade paperback has recently hit stores, I couldn’t recommend this enough – pick it up! (MB)

mind the gap #4
Mind The Gap #4 © Image Comics

6. Mind MGMT

Strewn with fake ads, information packets, and back-up stories Mind MGMT is a reading experience unlike any other. Think the first seasons of Lost, as if written in collaboration by Philip K Dick and Agatha Christie. Mind MGMT #5 was my issue of the year. DO NOT WAIT FOR THE TRADE – scour the land for the issues and no matter the cost or effort you shall be rewarded with one of the finest in print comics today, and certainly not disappointed. Creator Matt Kindt himself stated that this series was designed was designed as a monthly. It’s the first monthly series that he’s done (although he’s now taken over from Jeff Lemire on Frankenstein: Agent of S.H.A.D.E. #10 onwards) and it’s utterly unique. I treasure this as I do George Orwell’s Down and Out in Paris and London and Alan Moore’s Watchmen and V for Vendetta. (JL)

Mind MGMT #5
Mind MGMT #5 © Dark Horse

Come back tomorrow for the final part in Geeks Unleashed’s Top Twenty Comics of 2012. 

Part 1: 20 – 16

Part 2: 15 – 11

Geeks Unleashed’s Top Twenty Comics of 2012 (15-11)

Continuing from yesterdays first installment of the Top Twenty Comics of 2012, we’ve got the second part for you:

15. The Creep

An engaging mystery, with a classic noir protagonist, I was originally attracted to this series by the wonderful Frank Miller negative cover. However Arcudi’s tale of Oxel, his condition, his past and his current case is poignant and painful, with a sensitivity often lacking in mainstream comics. Jonathan Case’s art is stunning – his contrasting styles are mightily impressive and I hope to see more from this creative team in the near future. In the meantime, I’m going to check out Green River Killer and Dear Creature. (JL)

The Creep #1 © Dark Horse Comics
The Creep #1 © Dark Horse Comics

14. Harbinger

Writer Joshua Dysart and artist Khari Evans have done an amazing job bringing Harbinger from the 90’s to 21st Century. This title makes me think how the Ultimate version of the X-Men should have gone, the powers belonging to the heroes and villains in this book are already inside them similar to being a mutant. morally The corrupt Toyo Harada could easily be Magneto, who runs the evil Harbinger Foundation. Peter Stanchek is the star of the book and could easily be a young Cyclops, seven issue into the run and we’ve seen Peter grow greatly as a character. Out of Valiant’s five titles on offer this is easily the best of the bunch. (MB)

Harbinger #7 © Valiant Comics
Harbinger #7 © Valiant Comics

13. Prophet

Prophet was brought back in 2012 by Image Comics. However this re-launch which started in January with issue 21 is so different from the original Rob Leifeld creation that it seems almost like a different beast altogether. Written by Brandon Graham, whose work on King City and Multiple Warheads is widely respected and loved by more discerning comic book fans, this series sees John Prophet awaken from a generations long cryo-sleep and find his way in an alien city. Prophet is a man out of time and Graham is having all kinds of fun with the sci-fi elements he has brought to this book. The artwork by Simon Roy is brilliant. His style is perfectly suited to the story and he has a great ability to bring the craziest ideas of Graham on to the page. Find the back issues if you haven’t been reading this because you will not be disappointed. (SH)

Prophet #30 © Image Comics
Prophet #30 © Image Comics

12. Harvest

In my opinion this could easily win best mini series of 2012. Hands down this comic literally kicked arse in terms of artwork and storytelling.  A.J. Lieberman and Colin Lorimer’s Harvest #1 made my comic of the week back in August which portrays the (world of illegal organ harvesting. If you have any friends out there that say comics are just for kids give them this to read and sit back. This is the kind of story I could quite easily have envisioned in a realworld Batman story. If you’ve not picked this up yet track down the back issues. (MB)

Harvest #1 © Image Comics
Harvest #1 © Image Comics

11. Before Watchmen Minutemen

Oh Darwyn Cooke, if it wasn’t for you I’d have happily passed on Before Watchmen. However, your ability to ‘spin a yarn’ (wrapped in delightful ‘Golden Age’ artwork) captured my imagination and allowed me to follow you on a sacrilegious journey. He’s not only understood the original (something which has seemed beyond the likes of JMS) but with great ingenuity built upon and around it. It’s one hell of a tale, whose conclusion is right around the corner. (JL)

Before Watchmen: Minutemen #4 © DC Comics
Before Watchmen: Minutemen #4 © DC Comics

Come back tomorrow for the third part in Geeks Unleashed’s Top Twenty Comics of 2012. 

Reel Talk: Life of Pi

Life of Pi

 

Director: Ang Lee.

Starring: Irrfan Khan, Suraj Sharma, Ayush Tandon, Adil Hussain, Rafe Spall, Gerard Depardieu, James Saito.

Run Time: 127 minutes.

Rating: PG.

Life of Pi is about a young Indian boy, Pi Patel (Suraj Sharma), and his incredible ordeal stranded in the Pacific Ocean with a royal Bengal tiger named Richard Parker. I read the novel that the film had been adapted from a good while back, and an adaptation has been in production for pretty much that whole period. It’s a tough story to get right on screen, working with multiple frameworks and exploring a tonne of massive issues. It is a unique and interesting book and quite frankly, fantastic.

Try and read before you see it if possible ©ElleCroft
Try and read before you see it if possible ©ElleCroft

I’m not usually in favour of big screen adaptations of stories so deeply rooted in the imagination, and factoring the logistical (in a directorial sense) nightmare of the story being mainly set on a boat with two characters, Life of Pi was always going to be a tough sell. It’s always going to be harder to make the film interesting without the vivid world each reader creates, and Yann Martel’s perfect writing style to accompany it.

Ang Lee, a man I have never really had much time for has a filmmaker, has absolutely nailed it. The tone and humour are perfectly suited in the early scenes, and sufficiently tense and dramatic when we get to the Ocean. For once, the 3D really enhances the film, adding texture and depth to the scenery and action. Plot wise, most of the story remains intact save for a few omissions more than likely due to time constraints. The novel does so much to set the scene and introduce the themes it will explore, so I can understand little bits here and there will be lost.

Ang Lee aint never living this down ©MediaGeekNetwork
Ang Lee aint never living this down ©MediaGeekNetwork

The film opens with an nameless writer (Rafe Spall) meeting the adult Pi (Irrfan Khan) after being told about a story that will make him believe in God. Like the in the book, we see Pi at various stages of childhood growing up around his parents’ zoo in India, before the family decide to move to Canada (bringing the animals with them to sell). Various truths and life lessons are established, before we get to the big action set piece that I had been looking forward to: the sinking of the freighter.

Recreate this scene by chartering any ferry across the Irish Sea ©SmallApartement
Recreate this scene by chartering any ferry across the Irish Sea ©SmallApartement

As a guy who will happily watch the second half of Titanic to see the boat go down, I was more than impressed with the visual spectacle. It’s disorientating and frantic, as dark waves lash the boat and drag sailors overboard, whilst animals pass by in panic. Once Pi is secured on a lifeboat however, his ordeal continues, as the storm continues to rage and he has to contend with the introduction of Richard Parker. These early scenes were my favourite, as even knowing the rest of the story I felt the sheer terror Pi does, faced with the almost certain death of life with a cold blooded killing machine.

The rendering of the wildlife (Richard Parker in particular) is spot on, and mostly feels real. I thought it might be a little too green screen for my tastes, but it worked, and you do get the impression that you’re watching a very real tiger trying to rip an unlucky actor to shreds.

He's a pussy cat once you get to know him ©HitEmWhereYouAint
He’s a pussy cat once you get to know him ©HitEmWhereYouAint

The emotional clout of the film depends on the relationship between Pi and Richard Parker, and the tiger does feel like a real emoting character and is ably supported by the multiple versions of the title character around him. As the grown version, Khan brings a subtle poignancy to the role, hinting at the life changing events he is about to share. His eyes connected with the audience, and he didn’t have to say much to convey all of his conflicting feelings and emotion. Pi the Younger brings a childlike innocence (as expected from a precocious little child actor scamp), but the highest praise must be reserved for newcomer Suraj Sharma.

Lovely view, all things considered ©Slate
Lovely view, all things considered ©Slate

To take on such a weighty and pivotal role in a Christmas Oscar-bait blockbuster takes real bravery, but for it to be your first film role is something else entirely. He brings a calm assuredness to the role, tackling his fear and panic head on. It’s down to Sharma that Pi becomes the man we see later on, showing skill beyond his years and a real maturity so often lacking in Hollywood wunderkinds. His love for the dangerous man-eater he grows to depend on is heart-warming, and a real joy to watch.

My only real criticism falls on the marketing of the film. When I viewed it, the cinema was full of families with young kids, and the book certainly at least isn’t child friendly. It is dark in parts and emotionally complex, dealing with issues that little’uns aren’t ready to handle yet. That said, the kids seemed to enjoy the visuals enough, with the grown up stuff mostly sailing over their heads, with the graphic Animal Planet violence mostly implied, slightly obscured or glossed over to retain that PG rating. I would usually rant here about watering down content to increase bums on seats, but it felt real enough and the film works enough for this not to be a real issue, even though I loved the visceral impact of the novel’s sporadic and often brutal violence. The film put a real smile on my face and tugged at my heartstrings at the same time (I had a bit of dust in my eyes…) and was visually magnificent, and what more can you ask for in a winter blockbuster?

Score: 8 out of 10.

If you liked this, check out: The Hobbit, The Jungle Book, Slumdog Millionaire, Castaway.

NEWS: Peter Parker Amazing Spider-Man #700

Just for clarification spoilers are on in this article and if you’ve yet to read Amazing Spider-Man #700 or Avenging Spider-Man #15.1 then I will turn off the computer right now and download it from Comixology or head down to your local comic book store and pick it up and I warn you there is going to be high demand for this book so move quickly (don’t break any speeding limits).

Since issue #698 of Amazing Spider-Man social media has gone crazy, fans have gone crazy even to the point of Dan Slott receiving death threats and via Twitter and Facebook saying that he will not be tolerating it anymore. Although he’s been poking fun at fans via Twitter the Amazing Spider-Man writer felt some fans had crossed the line.

Dan Slott has been on active duty via Twitter building speculation over the ending of Amazing Spider-Man, hyping the book to new levels and that hype has definitely been present with several comic shop owners releasing scanned images and even going as far as to sell #700 on eBay weeks before it went on sale but Marvel quickly got involved in that one. The comic has even found its way onto the torrent websites. I’ve not see so much hype surrounding a comic in such a long time and fans desperate to know the ending Amazing which leads into the Marvel NOW Superior Spider-Man.

After so much speculation and craziness the day of release has finally arrived, they picked a good week for it as DC have their Throne of Atlantis story line going on and Image have the first issue Mara, along with a few others comics out this week, so book stood a good chance of overshadowing the competition. After three issues of the fans being aware that Doctor Octopus was inside the body of Peter Parker and Peter Parker was in the dying body of Doctor Octopus. We’ve seen Doctor Octopus enjoy his new life and Peter Parker becoming desperate to get his life back, using super villains to break out of a maximum security prison which all comes to a head in this issue.

Issue #700 tells of the final battle between Peter Parker and Doctor Octopus and although I won’t reveal the ending of that battle Avenging Spider-Man looks to build on this ending to give us January’s Superior Spider-Man. This much I can say there will be a new Spider-Man in that issue #1 and it looks to be a tale of redemption and although there is a new status quo for now I’m sure in time Peter Parker will return perhaps in time for his movie sequel.

“This is the single most seismic shift in Spider-Man’s history—and it’s not something that will disappear any time soon,” said Axel Alonso, Editor in Chief, Marvel Entertainment. “When Spider-Man editor Steve Wacker and writer Dan Slott came to us with this story, it was clear that this was a long term plan crafted with the utmost love and respect for the character. This is the kind of story that will have fans up in arms—but also coming back to the comic stores to check out each new exciting issue.”

After reading the final issue of Amazing Spider-Man it wasn’t what I expected and I do fear picking up issue #1 of Superior Spider-Man and hope that Marvel is heading into another Clone Saga. Time will tell but for now lets enjoy this direction.

All images copyright Marvel Comics
 
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #700
Written by DAN SLOTT with JM DEMATTEIS & JEN VAN METER
Art by HUMBERTO RAMOS with GIUSEPPE CAMUNCOLI & STEPHANIE BUSCEMA
Cover by MR. GARCIN
ON-SALE NOW!AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #700 SECOND PRINTING VARIANT (NOV128135)
Written by DAN SLOTT with JM DEMATTEIS & JEN VAN METER
Art by HUMBERTO RAMOS with GIUSEPPE CAMUNCOLI & STEPHANIE BUSCEMA
Cover by MR. GARCIN
FOC – 1/7/13, ON SALE 1/30/13AVENGING SPIDER-MAN #15.1
Written by CHRIS YOST
Art by PACO MEDINA
Cover by PAOLO RIVERA
ON-SALE NOW!AVENGING SPIDER-MAN #15.1 SECOND PRINTING VARIANT (NOV128017)
Written by CHRIS YOST
Art by PACO MEDINA
Cover by PAOLO RIVERA
FOC – 1/7/13, ON SALE 1/30/13

SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN #1 (NOV120633)
Written by DAN SLOTT
Art & Cover by RYAN STEGMAN
ON SALE – 1/9/13

Geeks Unleashed’s Top Twenty Comics of 2012 (20-16)

We’ve already brought you the Top Ten Television Shows and Games of 2012, now Comics get their turn. Stephen, Jo and I have debated the top twenty comics of 2012 for the past few weeks and what follows is the first for four bite sized chunks for you to get your teeth into.

20. Avengers Vs. X-Men

Even I was skeptical of such a title as it was Bendis driven. The man can write amazing books – Daredevil, Avengers, Powers, you name it but his event books have never sat quite well with me. But Bendis was joined by the combined writing team of Jason Aaron, Ed Brubaker, Matt Fraction, Jonathon Hickman and unfortunately Jeph Loeb. All I can image is the rest of them kept the heroes out the Savage Land and away from Loeb’s awful writing and managed to pull off one of the best event books I’ve read in many, many years. Every issue something happened. I had to take my hat of the creative team, they managed an event book which kept me coming back in terms of action and story development.This title will be remembered for the death of Charles Xavier and the Mutant gene returning as well as Cyclops going off the deep end. The trade is due out in March and if you missed this give it a go. (MB)

Avengers Vs X-Men #11 Cover - © Marvel Comics
Avengers Vs X-Men #11 Cover – © Marvel Comics

19. Fatale

It’s no secret that I’m a huge fan of Ed Brubaker’s writing. I recommend his comic books to anyone who stops long enough for me to get a chance. His partnership with Sean Phillips has produced some of the best comics of the last ten years. With Fatale Brubaker has taken the crime noir elements of Criminal and the supernatural elements of Sleeper and created a fascinating blend which makes for a rewarding experience each month. Phillips art on Fatale is superb as usual; his visualisation of Brubaker’s characters is distinctive and beautiful to look at. With Fatale Brubaker and Phillips have an ongoing comic book which looks like it could go on for years. This would suit me just fine. (SH)

Fatale #8 Copyright 2012 Brubaker & Phillips
Fatale #8 © 2012 Brubaker & Phillips

18. Revival

Described as a “Rural Noir” this title tells the tale of a town in quarantine, for one day all of the people who died that day returned to life. The first five issues of this comic hit stores this month as volume one of a trade paperback and this is what I had to say about it on a recent Wednesday Watchlist:
“The Graphic Novel collects the first 5 issues and a short story from Free Comic Book Day of the ground breaking ‘Rural Noir‘ story written by NYT Bestselling Author Tom Seeley with Eisner winning artist Mike Norton. I was slightly behind the times with this series and picked up both issues one and two together, One the way home my wife wanted to stop at Homebase and I said I was staying in the car as I wanted to read Revival. Both issues were read before she got back. Set in Wisconsin, Office Dana Cypress has been tasked the job of dealing with the repercussions of the dead coming back to life for one day. Christmas is coming and if you need Christmas present ideas then this gets my full recommendation.” (MB)

Revival TPB © Image Comics
Revival TPB © Image Comics

17. Archer and Armstrong

Valiant’s very own dynamic duo have been one of their highlights since their return earlier this year. So far, this booked has been packed full of comedy, a take on the classic ‘buddy’ movie – think 48 Hours with Nick Notle and Eddie Murphy. And since the arrival of Emanuela Lupacchino, Guillermo Ortego and Matt Milla (X-Factor) the book has gone from strength to strength. Van Lente’s comic timing also shines. (JL)

Archer and Armstrong #1 © Valiant Comics
Archer and Armstrong #1 © Valiant Comics

16. The Punisher

The latest on-going Punisher comic from Marvel has recently ended. Launched in 2011 it has been one of the best comics from the big two publishers this year, so to see it come to an abrupt end was very disappointing. Rucka writing the Punisher was a perfect fit. As a character that is oft misunderstood by both writer and reader, Rucka really nailed the complex characteristics of Frank Castle. The art on this comic book by Marco Chechetto and Matt Hollingsworth was absolutely stunning and really complemented Rucka’s intense, violent story. For a comic book featuring a protagonist of few words The Punisher gave me more reading pleasure than most comics on the shelves in 2012. (SH)

Punisher #13 © Marvel Comics
Punisher #13 © Marvel Comics

For the next part in this years Top Twenty just click here.

Comic of the Week – 26/12/2012 – Amazing Spider-Man #700

ASM_700_Cover
Amazing Spider-Man #700 © Marvel Comics

Writer – Dan Slott, JM DeMatteis, Jen Van Meter

Artist – Humberto Ramos, Giuseppe Camuncol, and Stephanie Buscema

Contains MAJOR SPOILERS!

Nothing is forever.

The final issue of perhaps the most iconic of comic books, Amazing Spider-Man, by Dan Slott and Humberto Ramos wins ‘Comic of the Week’ by default due to the Holidays and therefore reduced shipping.

The issue itself is somewhat of a damp squib, and whilst no-one is better than Marvel at fond farewells, the issue lacks the necessary tension and gravitas.

In Amazing Spider-Man #700 Slott has written Peter Parker’s eulogy. Undoubtedly, he loved the character, however, it isn’t the magnum opus he or I wanted, or the character deserved.

Whilst Otto Octavius bests his nemesis, Peter Parker, his character arc over the course of the issue is largely unbelievable, blame for which lies at the feet of Slott. It’s poorly conceived, written and feels rushed.

Furthermore the issue does nothing to entice the reader to Marvel NOW!’s Superior Spider-Man next month – unless you’re interested in Doc Ock running round in a Spider-Man costume.

Ramos’ art, however, is a revelation during the action sequences; the kinetic energy of his panels is beyond belief. Despite the extended page number, the quality doesn’t suffer. This is perhaps the best issue of his run.

The less said about the back-up stories, the better – solely there to justify the inflated cover price, which was also beyond belief.

An ill-fitting end to a 50 year story.

And so Peter Parker’s reign as the Amazing Spider-Man ends not with a bang but with a whimper.

But remember, nothing is forever.

2012

As we wrap up 2012 and wrap up Geeks Unleashed’s first year on the interwebs we’ve been compiling Geeks Unleashed’s very own wrap up of the year to celebrate all of the hard work that has gone into the world of Geeks:

TVTop Ten Television Shows of 2012

Another year has passed and it is once again time to pick up a copy of the Christmas TV guide only to get ceremonially disappointed by the unrelenting schedule of cruddy repeats. To save you any undue angst this Festive Season, and to get the DVD stocks in early, we sent our newest member Katelyn Barnes  on a bold mission to uncover the best TV shows of 2012. 

 

 

 

New LogoTop Ten Games of 2012

Geeks Unleashed’s first annual Game of the Year coverage sees us count down the Top Ten Games of 2012. It’s been an incredible year for all genres and platforms. We sent Hazel Brown through this years games to find the cream of the crop.

 

 

 

Continue reading “2012”

TV REVIEW: Doctor Who Christmas Special – The Snowman

I have to be honest. I missed last year’s Doctor Who Christmas Special. It’s the only one I’ve missed of the 2005 series redux. This year I promised myself I’d make sure to catch it. So I made my way home after a my Christmas shift and poured myself an adult beverage into my disappearing Tardis mug (compliments of a dear friend and fellow geekster).

Sitting down I settled in for what I was certain to be another fantastic Doctor Who episode. I was a little disappointed. It’s understandable that The Doctor is upset after losing the Ponds, but the Doctor in this episode was rude, impolite, and rather annoying.

That said the introduction to Oswin was fantastic. I’m looking forward to learning more about her. Her dynamic with The Doctor is good, but isn’t he married? They’re both a little too flirty for me I guess. Though I may be a little a bitter and cynical on this point right now. 🙂

Photo Credit: Adrian Rogers, ©BBC/BBC WORLDWIDE
Photo Credit: Adrian Rogers, ©BBC/BBC WORLDWIDE

The story lacked something. While the killer snowmen were cool, their enemy status was weak. Overall it wasn’t a bad episode, but not one of my favorites.

Tis The Season to be Different: Top Ten Alternative Christmas Classics

Top Ten Alternative Xmas Hits © jazzguitar.be
Top Ten Alternative Xmas Hits © jazzguitar.be

It’s that time of year again when tinsel mysteriously gets in your porridge and children get creative by graffitiing your extremities following an over-exuberant trip into a bottle of mulled wine. Pretty standard behaviour for any nuclear family I’m sure you’d agree.

But here at Geeks Unleashed we thought we’d shake things up by eating pizza for Christmas dinner, wrapping presents in newspaper and listening to alternative takes on Christmas classics. I mean, who needs Maria Carey when you’ve got a death metal take on Santa Baby?

So here it is, the long anticipated top ten of Alternative Christmas Classics (in no particular order):

1. Rudolph the Rednosed… Redneck? by Lynyrd Skynyrd

Possibly the finest take on this classic sing-along, Skynyrd’s most recent incarnation decided to abandon the Stars and Bars in favour of a countrified reworking of eleven Christmas standards.

2. Winter Wonderland by Toby Keth

Keeping with the country theme, this groovy and fun-filled take on Felix Bernard’s pop ballad is drenched in fiddles, banjos and honky-tonk indulgence. Not bad for a man dubbed the Angry American.

3. A Mad Russian’s Christmas by The Trans-Siberian Orchestra

A crunching, throbbing semi-Philharmonic masterpiece, A Mad Russian’s Christmas is from the band’s debut album Christmas Eve and Other Stories, and is a refreshing reminder of the skill and expertise associated with this brand of alternative metal.

4. All I Want for Christmas is You by Maddi Jane

As always, we’re on the prowl for new talent and in 14 year old Maddi Jane we believe we’ve found one. Her take on this heart-warming love song showcases what a young voice yet to reach its maturity can do. Watch this space, we’ve got a special one here.

5. We Wish You a Reggae Christmas by Yellowman

I love this. The tune is both recognisable but also entirely unfamiliar, which makes for a comforting but exciting take on what should be the sounds of snow and coal fires, but has come out as the sounds of warm beaches and dancing in the sunset. Nice one Mr. Winston ‘Yellowman’ Foster.

6. 12 Redneck Days of Christmas by Jeff Foxworthy

Woh, somebody done been to the Walmart! For those in need of a good chuckle this Christmas, tune into this crazy and irreverent interpretation of the po-faced staple.

12 pack of Bud
11 rasslin tickets
10 of Copenhagen
9 years probation
8 table dancers
7 packs of Red Man
6 cans of Spam
5 flannel shirts
4 big mud tires
3 shotgun shells
2 huntin dogs
And some parts to a Mustang GT

7. Silent Night by Weezer

They did something other than Teenage Dirtbag?

8. Santa Claus is Coming to Town by Bruce Springsteen 

Generally speaking, anything that The Boss touches turns to pure gold, but in this case even Mr. Springsteen has excelled himself. The tune stinks of Jersey Rock, with the highlights being the sax licks and solos by the late Clarence Clemmons.

9. Jingle Bells by Techno Christmas

This is awful, just awful. So bad, in fact, that it had to be included on here. Warning: not suitable for children, pets or people with a delicate musical constitution. I mean, it even speeds up towards the end.

10. The Bells of Dublin/Christmas Eve by The Chieftains 

Call me a stereotypical Irishman (you, the flat cap wearer?), but this tremendous bit of diddley aye from traditional royalty, The Chieftains, is as close as anything to prove the argument that God is Irish.

MERRY CHRISTMAS Y’ALL! SEE YOU IN 2013! 

Xmas apps to fill joy in life on the special day

Let me wish you all a very happy Christmas Day to you all. Today is the day, and i have selected few Christmas apps for everyone to enjoy that on your iPhone or iPad when you are free. Download them, enjoy them and just have fun! Continue reading “Xmas apps to fill joy in life on the special day”

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