Brian’s Exploratory Christmas Endeavor ’20: Happiest Season

Happiest Season poster.png

I was thinking about the way in which we are funneled by The Algorithm into our own isolated realities when I went to look up the Rotten Tomatoes reviews for Happiest Season on Hulu. You see, I was under the impression that the proverbial ‘everybody’ had a problem with this movie because it failed to stick the landing when commenting on lesbian relationships.

The thing is, when I think back now, I only saw that in two or three places. And they were mostly just snarky memes, not detailed arguments. And even if they had been detailed arguments, that’s still all they are: arguments. Opinions. The Algorithm has this way of making us thing the tiny personalized micro-zeitgeists in which it keeps us encapsulated are, in fact, the zeitgeist we are all living in. And it’s a great big lie.

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Brian’s Exploratory Christmas Endeavor ’20: Aggretsuko: We Wish You a Metal Christmas

Aggretsuko" We Wish You a Metal Christmas (TV Episode 2018) - IMDb

This is a weird one. Like Ranma 1/2’s ‘Tendo Family Christmas Scramble’, this is a Christmas episode of an anime. Unlike that, (and if anything, more in-line with another Netflix item of this sort, ‘Sabrina’s Christmas Wish’) this is a canonical entry into a straightforward, chronologically-plotted show that is released as a one-time Christmas gift to the fans, and lives forever-after outside the season arrangement of the series it belongs in.

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Brian’s Exploratory Christmas Endeavor ’20: Miracle on 34th Street (1947)

Miracle on 34th Street - Wikipedia

I’ve finally seen the original Miracle on 34th Street (with only three more versions to go!) and I’m pleased to say I liked it very much. The third re-make with Mara Wilson was out when I was a little kid, but somehow I missed it and all its older siblings for all these years.

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Brian’s Exploratory Christmas Endeavor ’20: Pottersville

When it came to my attention that there was an 85 minute Christmas film starring Michael Shannon, Judy Greer, Thomas Lennon, Ron Perlman, Ian McShane and Christina Hendricks, and that it had a 0% on Rotten Tomatoes, I knew that I had to see it, and quick. In fact, it is how I opened my 2020 Exploratory Christmas Endeavor. It was not, however, the first movie I wrote about for my Exploratory Christmas Endeavor, because despite its being only 85 minutes long, it was so bad that I managed to watch an entire other, better movie before finishing this one.

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Season 3 Episode 7: ‘By the Way, Woody Allen is Innocent’ & In The Mood For Love

I give up trying to figure out episode numbers for this “season”. I may have to go back at some point and just re-number them all from scratch.

This episode’s first half will be a GBU test of loyalty, I’m sure, because the issue of the accusation against legendary director Woody Allen is something that everyone thinks they know about, and if they think they do, they don’t want to be on the wrong side of it. But I encourage you to approach this essay (documentary) by Ricky Worley with an open mind.

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Season 3, Episode 6: Candid Podcast: The Return of Adam

Something interesting happened this year, dear listener. I never directly addressed it on the show, because it seemed in poor taste to make personal issues public, but Adam and I–longtime viewers will recognize–had a falling out in 2017, which is why in late 2018 when the show returned, I was the sole host, with a rotation of guests and Adam was nowhere to be found. I understood that the lack of clarity about that may have been frustrating for some folks. I also understand that people have different takes on which version of the show was better.

This will be an interesting listen for people, I think, as Adam and I go some way toward illuminating the matter and our reconciliation. The show will, however, maintain its current shape, with me and a rotation of co-hosts, of whom Adam will now return as one.

Regarding the show’s immediate future, I am planning on my annual Christmas episode, as well as a mini-series about Neon Genesis Evangelion, given that the 4th Rebuild of Evangelion movie is due to finally release (after 8 years) in January of 2021. The first episode of these, featuring two entirely new co-hosts, will be out soon. Before that, there will also be a long-overdue and well over-stuffed episode with Adam in the co-host’s seat. That should go up shortly after this one does.