Link Bank December 2016: Recapping the year

It’s the end of 2016, and I know what you’re thinking: finally. It’s been a rough year in general, but it’s been particularly bad for movie and music lovers.

But now it’s time to get ready for the New Year, and that means we need be positive. We need to, guys. So in that spirit, let’s take a moment to reflect on the good that 2016 brought us (except for that one about the disappointing movies, but the writer made some good points). Enjoy!

The Best TV Shows of 2016 – New York Times

“Year-end lists are stories: they tell the truth by lying. The idea that a critic can watch all the television there is today, let alone isolate the 10 best works across wildly different genres, is a fiction. But play along with it, and you tell a larger tale of what mattered this year and why.”

The Most Disappointing Movies of 2016 – Film School Rejects

“The worst movies don’t open in theaters, they go straight to DVD or VOD, and some of us never want to speak of them again. So instead I’m offering up a list of movies that promised so much — typically due to the proven talent involved — but delivered noticeably less.”

And check out their #2016Rewind video here.

Best Books of 2016 – Publisher’s Weekly

Take a look at your list and check off this selection of the year’s best books from the editors of Publisher’s Weekly. The list features a lot of nonfiction, including “Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City” by Matthew Desmond, “A Kingdom of Their Own: The Family Karzai and the Afghan Disaster” by Joshua Partlow, and “Secondhand Time: The Last of the Soviets” by Svetlana Alexievich.

13 Best Books of 2016 – Harper’s Bazaar

For a more fiction-based take on the best of 2016, here’s a gallery by Harper’s Bazaar featuring “The Girls” by Emma Kline, “Swing Time” by Zadie Smith, and “Homegoing” by Yaa Gyasi.

The Best and Worst Swag of 2016 – The A.V. Club

In this video, The A.V. Club’s Josh Modell and John Teti unpack the “swag” (i.e. merchandise) they’ve been getting from movie studios and other Hollywood bigwigs over the course of the year. There are a lot of USB drives, and there’s also booze. Don’t send The A.V. Club stuff unless it’s really good, is the lesson here. (It’s actually pretty hilarious, check it out.)

Here’s to 2017 – may our television shows maintain their character development, may our movies keep CGI to a minimum, and may our books make us smarter.

Link Bank: August 2016 – What’s new in Fall 2016

It’s time for a new season, and when it comes to television, Fall is all about premieres. This August, we look at what’s new in TV, movies, and books:

New MacGyver Trailer Reunites Hero and Paperclip” – Entertainment Weekly

There’s a new reboot of MacGyver coming out on September 23, 2016. I’ve watched a couple episodes of the original series and I’m actually kind of excited to see this newer version.

Here’s Why Netflix ‘Gilmore Girls’ Will Release All Four Specials at Once” – ScreenCrush

After months of buildup, the Gilmore Girls revival is finally here! The four-part special will be available on Netflix, that savior of cult classics, November 25, 2016.

TBS will marathon Search Party, announces premiere date for People Of Earth” – The A.V. Club

I don’t know about you guys, but nothing gets my attention like the phrase “murder mystery comedy.” That’s how Alia Shawkat’s new TBS show Search Party has been described, and I for one can’t wait to watch it when it premieres November 21, 2016.

Meet the Women of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children” –

The film adaptation of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, directed by the kind of weird Tim Burton, releases September 30, 2016, and promises to be utterly bizarre if the trailer is anything to go by.

Ava DuVernay’s Netflix Documentary ‘The 13th’ Will Open 54th New York Film Festival” – IndieWire

The 13th, a documentary by Ava DuVernay about the prison system in the United States, releases October 7, 2016, in theaters and on Netflix.

Read the first chapter of A Torch Against the Night, the sequel to An Ember in the Ashes” – Entertainment Weekly

Good new for fans of writer Sabaa Tahir – the sequel to her book An Ember in the Ashes, A Torch Against the Night, comes out today, August 30, 2016.

Fantastic Beasts’ Sequel in the Works, Release Date Set – The Hollywood Reporter

After the buzz surrounding Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, J.K. Rowling’s magical world is the star of the show in the movie adaptation of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, one of the most anticipated releases for this fall. The movie premieres November 18, 2016.

Last but definitely not least (technically not last, either), Tahereh Mafi’s new book Furthermore comes out August 30, 2016. Come back on Friday for my review!

What are you looking forward to this fall? Share your favorites in the comments below!

Link Bank: May 2016

Great reads on creativity, media, and more that I’ve compiled for this month:

Secrets of the Creative Brain – The Atlantic

“I have spent much of my career focusing on the neuroscience of mental illness, but in recent decades I’ve also focused on what we might call the science of genius, trying to discern what combination of elements tends to produce particularly creative brains. What, in short, is the essence of creativity?”

When Storytime Blows Kids Minds: The Power of the Plot Twist – NPR

“”I, am your father!” I stopped, and drew my breath, elated. I had said the words. I was overcome, like the Sith Lord, by what I could do. I, his mother, was the first one to expose what may be the greatest plot twist since Mr. Rochester’s wife turned up screaming in the attic. I was drunk with power, and my entire history as a sentient consumer of story flew through my head. It felt so good, I contemplated spoiling every other thing I knew.”

Who Are All Those Newborn Extras? – The A.V. Club

“There’s a small army of tiny, barely sentient extras. Whose babies are they? Where do studios find them? What’s that weird fake placental goo made out of?”

The Point of Stories – Sweet Talk

“We tell stories to supplement for experience, so that we can be prepared for things that haven’t happened to us personally but can be imagined to happen.”

On Raising Backyard Chickens – Broad Street Review

“Chickens, alive or oven-roasted, weren’t much a part of my childhood. My father — still haunted by the memory of Friday night dinners in Brooklyn, boiled chicken congealing on the plate while he refused to eat and his mother scolded — banned chicken in any form from our family table.”

Betty and Veronica #2 Covers Revealed – The Mary Sue

“They seem more representative of actual teenage girls than a caricature of them, which I really appreciate.”