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The Joy of Television, Episode 10:

The Year in Geek, Part 3 - Best TV of 2016

It's Part 3 of our annual "Year in Geek" celebration, and on this episode we (Rich, Jordan and Kevin) discuss the best that Television had to offer in 2016. Choosing favorites from this year's crop of top-quality TV shows was as difficult as it's ever been, thanks in part to the continued barrage of new shows from streaming sources like Netflix, Amazon and Hulu, and cable contenders FX, AMC, and The CW (to name only a few). The 2016 television landscape was unprecedented in its quality and variety, and it made crowning a winner nearly impossible.

But here at The Joy of Geek we're always up for a challenge, and while we disagree with each other on many of the winners, our individual favorites span a wide variety of TV styles and genres - from the animated and darkly humorous Bojack Horseman, to the sci-fi epic drama of Westworld, to the edgy comedy of Speechless and Atlanta, and beyond. We discuss the merits of these shows and so many more while handing out the following awards:

Best Scene
Most Surprising Show
Best Performer
Most Disappointing Show
Best Character
Best Episode
Worst Show
Our Top 3 Best Shows of the Year
...and more!

So join us, as we compare, contrast, disparage, denegrate - and ultimately, celebrate - the best and worst Television of 2016. This...is The Joy of TV!

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The Joy of Comics Podcast, Episode 15:

Batman, Watchmen and the Art of Modern Comics w/ Gabriel Dunston

On this episode of The Joy of Comics podcast, we (Rich, Jordan and Kevin) welcome local comics creator and friend of the show Gabriel Dunston - and although our original intention was to talk about his new Kickstarter project Stuff and Things, the conversation soon evolved into a wide-reaching discussion about the state of modern comics.

From assessing the quality of The Killing Joke and The Dark Knight Returns and their place in the overall Batman continuity, to debating the continuing relevance of mainstream superhero comics, to sharing what we've been reading and enjoying lately and more - this is a comics-focused conversation that covers a lot of ground.

We then take a few minutes to debate the quality of Zach Snyder's Watchmen film before getting down to business to discuss Gabriel's work. His new art book collection is the latest in a series of thus-far successfully-funded KS projects, and Gabe shares the story of its genesis and his experiences creating the book, as well as his ongoing Purgatory Pub Quadrilogy, his new YouTube series, and much more.

So join us, as we take a deep dive into the world of comics - independent, historic and otherwise. This...is the Joy of Comics!

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The Joy of Gaming Podcast, Episode 60:

The Year in Geek, Part 2 - Best Video Games of 2016

Our Annual "Year in Geek" festivities continue with a look back at the best (and worst) that the video games industry had to offer in 2016. We (Rich, Jordan and Kelsey) played a lot of games this past year, and it's always tough to crown the best and brightest of the genre that started it all for us here at TJOG. Somehow though, we manage, and this year's conversation covers a LOT of gaming ground - from Doom and World of Warcraft: Legion, to Pokemon Sun and Moon and Zero Time Dilemma, to Final Fantasy 15, and so much more.

And as an added bonus, this episode was recorded LIVE! from our hotel room at MAGFest 2017, so you never know what might happen as we attempt to offer cogent opinions on 2016's biggest games. This year's award categories include:

Top 3 Games
Biggest Surprise
Biggest Disappointment
Worst Game
Best Character
Best Game from a Previous Year
...and More!

So join us as we close out another fantastic year in gaming, and celebrate our 60th episode of The Joy of Gaming Podcast. This...is the Joy of Gaming!

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The Joy of Film Podcast, Episode 11:

The Year in Geek, Part 1 - Best Films of 2016

Each year around this time, we here at The Joy of Geek Podcast get together for a series of "Best of the Year" episodes, celebrating our favorite Films, Video Games, TV Shows and Comics of the past year. This year, we (Rich, Jordan and Kevin) are kicking off the festivities with a look back at the Best Films of 2016, and simply put, it's been a roller-coaster ride of a year in cinema. We discuss the highest highs and lowest lows - from BvS and Suicide Squad to La La Land and Rogue One - in an episode full of strong opinions and a heated debate (or two).

And in true end-of-the-year-awards fashion, we've divised a list of categories to provide some order to the madness. This year, the categories include:

Top 3 Best Films
Biggest Surprise
Biggest Disappointment
Worst Film
Favorite Character
Favorite Performer
Best Scene
...and More!

So join us, for the first of our favorite series of podcasts to record, and hopefully, a fitting tribute to an outstanding year in media. This...is the Year in Geek!

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The Joy of Gaming Podcast, Episode 59:

Winter Gaming Extravaganza, Featuring Pokemon Sun and Moon and Final Fantasy XV

The Joy of Gaming Podcast is back after a bit of a break, with an episode that's jam-packed with content and more than capable of making up for lost time. We (Rich and Jordan) are ready to let loose the gaming flood gates, and all the huge Winter game releases we've been playing over the past two months serve as fuel for a fantastic and frenetic, mano y mano conversation.

What games have we been playing recently? What do we think of Nintendo Switch and all the recent news coming out of Sony's PSX Event? Just how solid is Pokemon's latest generation, Pokemon Sun and Moon? And now that Final Fantasy XV is a real game that exists and can actually be played, can it possibly live up to nearly ten years of gargantuan hype? You'll have to press play and leave your inhibitions at the door to find out.

After all, the years may pass and the tides may shift, but here, great video games will always provide our true north. This...is the Joy of Gaming!

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The Joy of Film Podcast, Episode 10:

Winter Film Season Celebration

On this episode of The Joy of Film Podcast, we (Rich, Jordan and Kevin) talk about all of the big movies we've seen recently. And because we're in the midst of the Winter Film Season, we'll be discussing some of the biggest films of the year, including: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Arrival, Edge of Seventeen, Moana, Final Fantasy XV: Kingsglaive, and more.

We also discuss some of the biggest recently-released trailers, trying our best to predict quality and figure out to expect from Ghost in the Shell, XXX: The Return of Xander Cage, Silence, Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2, F8: The Fate of the Furious, Spiderman: Homecoming and more. We also dive into some of the latest movie news, sneak in a bit of Marvel TV talk, and discuss a few other "film-adjacent" topics. 

We cover a lot of (snow-covered) ground in this episode, as there's a lot to talk about - and to love and not love - here in the Winter of Film. And although that sounds more than a bit ostentatious, we'll let it go. After all, This...is the Joy of Film!

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The Joy of Television Podcast, Episode 9:

Westworld and the Best of Science Fiction on TV

On this episode, we (Rich, Jordan and Kevin) dive back into the world of TV in a big way, exploring the past and present of the Science Fiction genre on Television. Here in Science Fiction's present, Westworld has taken over a lion's share of the pop culture conversation, and we have some strong opinions of our own about HBO's groundbreaking, hugely popular and (mostly) critically-lauded show. But gatling guns and robot "reveries" aside, we also discuss some of the other shows we've been watching, including Search Party, The Flash, Arrow, Supergirl, Doctor Who, and SNL.

And in honor of Westworld - as well as the large number of stellar Science Fiction shows thriving in the modern TV landscape - we decided to turn our attention to the genre's recent past and discuss our favorite Sci-Fi shows of all-time. We've each chosen a top-three list of shows, and because the genre is so fertile with quality choices, we also manage to sneak in a number of honorable mentions whenever possible. The result is a conversation about what makes the best Sci-Fi television so captivating, with more than a few disagreements and raised eyebrows along the way.

Add to that a TV news segment where we discuss the latest news on Star Trek Discovery, Sense 8, the TV adaptation of Y: The Last Man, Luke Cage, Marvel's The Inhumans and more, and you have a jam-packed TV episode full of passion, thrills, chills, and (more than a little) time travel. Because in our timeline, anyway, This...is the Joy of TV!

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The Joy of Comics Podcast, Episode 13:

Adventures at NC ComicCon 2016

On this episode of The Joy of Comics Podcast, we (Rich, Jordan and Kevin) discuss our recent visit to NC ComicCon 2016, a phenomenal curated comic book convention held each year at the Durham Convention Center in North Carolina. The show is organized by local comic shop Ultimate Comics, and this year our own Kevin Schaefer served as an organizer and panel moderator, giving us a more in-depth look at the 3-day event than ever before.

We talk about everything we did at the show this year, including: scouring the the show floor for 3-for-$10 trade paperbacks, talking to a variety of creators about their recent books and crazy inside-baseball comics-industry stories, checking out the increasingly elaborate and creative cosplay, watching movies at the accompanying film-festival, our yearly visit to the Valiant Entertainment booth to ask questions, buy too many books and geek out over our shared love of the publisher, and last but not least, our guest-starring role in a “Podcasting 201” panel hosted by new our new friends at Name Redacted Podcast. 

With all those adventures to recount, you’d think there wouldn’t be any time left to talk about everything else, right? But to the contrary, we still find plenty of time to talk about our usual podcast mainstays - the best comic books we’ve been reading lately and the latest comic book and geek culture news - including a nice serving of DC and Marvel Comics, TV and film talk, and some creator-owned books thrown in for good measure.

So whether you attended this year's NC ComicCon, if you’re planning on going next year, or you just wanna hear some great stories about comics and comic books, it’s likely you’ve come to the right place. After all, this...is the Joy of Comics!

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The Joy of Film Podcast, Episode 9:

Doctor Strange Review

On this episode of The Joy of Film Podcast, we (Rich, Jordan and Kevin) dive headlong into the multiverse to review Marvel's latest film, Doctor Strange. The film stars the omnipresent Benedict Cumberbatch at the titular doctor who sustains career-ending injuries and, in searching for a cure, is thrust into a parallel world of magic, sorcery and mysticism the likes of which the Marvel Cinematic Universe has never seen. The film also stars Tilda Swinton, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Mads Mikkelson and Rachel McAdams, and enjoyed a huge opening weekend at the box office.

And while the film is a thematic departure from the previous MCU films, it also treads some very familiar comic-book ground by giving us another superhero origin story - much like the first Captain America and Iron Man films and Ant-Man, among others. As a result, it's an interesting film to talk about, and we'll weigh in on all aspects - from the characters, to the special effects, to the narrative, the battles, the villain(s), the ending and much more. And as we look ahead to next year's slate of no less than three new Marvel films, we discuss the potential for superhero genre fatigue, and predict whether or not this cinematic thrill ride we're on will slow down any time soon.

So consult the Ancient One, grab hold of some power from the Dark Dimension, and use the Eye of Agamotto to set aside some time to listen to this episode. Don't worry - the three sanctums will be safe until you return. This...is The Joy of Film!

 

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The Joy of Comics Podcast, Episode 12:

Graphic Novel Book Club - Outcast Vol. 1

Welcome to the inaugural episode of what we hope will become a storied new tradition here at the Joy of Geek - our Graphic Novel Book Club. For each episode, we (Rich, Jordan and Kevin) will choose a graphic novel or trade paperback to read as a group, and then get together a week or two later for an in-depth discussion. For future episodes, we'll also be announcing the book choices in advance on TheJoyofGeek.net so listeners can get in on the discussion too.

For our first episode of the GNBC, we're discussing Outcast: Vol. 1 - written by Robert Kirkman with art by Paul Azaceta. Outcast is an ongoing supernatural horror comic series published by Image Comics, and it's the story of Kyle Barnes - a man who has lived most of his life in the shadow of demonic possession. Kyle is an outcast in more ways than one, and soon he is called upon to use his strange and unique talents to battle the darkness and possibly save his own soul along the way. 

Outcast was originally conceived by Kirkman (of The Walking Dead fame) as an idea for both a comic series and a TV show, and the first season of the show aired this past summer on Cinemax. We discuss the first volume of the comic series in depth - offering our thoughts on the characters, the narrative so far, the art, and our hopes for the future of the series. We also touch on the pilot episode of the Cinemax series, and examine how closely it adheres to the source material. 

So here in the season of Halloween and all things haunted, join us as we venture ever closer to the evil that lurks in the hearts of men. Or rather, as we read a trade paperback and then discuss it in a well-lit room. Either way will work. This...is the Joy of Comics!


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