When the dogs bites, the bees stings, and we’re feeling sad… it’s good that we have these favorite things to fall back on! Welcome back to our weekly column, My Favorite Things, where our writers fangirl over whatever’s occupying the geeky areas of our headspaces. This time around we have a beautifully illustrated fantasy comic, an anime that takes it to the next level in its second season, a monster-filled television show with feminist leanings, and the soundtrack artist you should be streaming, right now.
Casey’s Favorite Thing is… Monstress by Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda!
My favorite thing would have to be Monstress, the excellent comic series by Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda. It’s been out for a little while, and I bought the first two issues several months ago on recommendation from a friend. I finally started reading and was blown away. The art is in an amazing, almost Art Deco style that I just love. Liu says of the story, “I had this image in my head of a battered girl, standing alone, absolutely furious, and behind her a battlefield that stretched for miles…The image of that furious girl never left me. She followed me from Bejing to Boston and to Japan, where Sana and I first began our collaboration and where that girl finally began to speak.” I can’t wait to see where this series goes.
Carey’s Favorite Thing is… Johan Johansson’s music!
I’m geeking out over Icelandic musician Johan Johansson. Johansson creates his own music, which is often very spare and electronic, and also scores films, the latest of which is the border drama Sicario (actor Taylor Sheridan’s phenomenal first screenplay). The haunting, percussive-heavy score drives the narrative and involves the viewer in the film (perfect for a tense film all about involvement). Many people discovered Johannson after his song “The Sun’s Gone Dim” was used to promote the 2011 alien apocalypse movie Battle L.A.. Johansson also composed the vibrant and flourishing piano-driven soundtrack to last year’s Stephen Hawking biopic, The Theory of Everything, which won him a Golden Globe award and an Oscar nomination.
Nancy’s Favorite Thing is… Noragami: Season 2!
My fav of the moment is season two of the anime Noragami (also called Noragami: Aragoto). The show focuses on Yato, a shrineless, nobody god of calamity who has to work his way up the celestial ladder by granting the the wishes of the living. From the beginning, the show has done a great job of mixing broad comedy, exciting action sequences, and creepy paranormal elements. But season two brought it to a whole other level, especially when it comes to character relationships and world-building. I enjoyed the second season of this show so much that I’ve been inspired to pick up the manga to see where things are going next. I hope we’ll get a season three!
Sharon’s Favorite Thing is…. Penny Dreadful!
My Favorite Thing is the return of Penny Dreadful, Showtime’s epic mashup of gothic Victorian and Edwardian monsters and literary characters. The acting is astonishing (why hasn’t Eva Green WON something for this?), the sets and plots and baddies are breathtaking, and the whole show gives me the sense that the money men in Hollywood have not gotten their fingers into this pie. The story-lines, particularly Vanessa Ives and the Bride of Frankenstein, have a profoundly feminist sensibility. Honestly, I can’t remember the last time I watched a genre cable show and didn’t get pissed off about their treatment of women. And more than that, despite each character’s monstrosities, they each have a nobility that makes you hope the world and their pitchforks never catch up to them.
What are your thoughts on the selection above? And what are your current “Favorite Things?” Let us know in the comments below!