Three Picks of 2020

Three Picks of 2020

Ahoy Mythopoeians! 

Happy New Year! I'm a little bit tardy on my January post but here I am! Since starting to blog in January I've been trying to crank out about a post a month just to jot down random thoughts and to keep people afloat as to what we're up to. Here's to continuing blogging in 2021! 

I thought today might be a good time to go over some things I've been enjoying for the past couple of months. These are all just things I've been consuming and enjoying lately, and my thoughts about why. 

​Here we go! 



Up first in comics is the Italian pulp horror classic Dylan Dog. Created in the 80's, Dylan Dog follows the eponymous paranormal investigator as he tackles on all matter of strange cases, crimes, and personal entanglements. The Long Goodbye finds Dylan Dog reunited with a childhood flame with a strange past. 

What I love about Dylan Dog is its mastery of pacing. Each page (usually between 4-6 panels) moves the story forward at a brisk pace, unfolding a romance mystery steeped in pulp tradition - old flames, flashbacks, and of course new clues! 

This particular story tells a bittersweet tale of young love, regret, and choices not made. It hit hard in the feels and legitimately made me long for something I can't quite put into words. It's a fantastic comic and one I recommend with full enthusiasm. 

Dylan Dog is published by Epicenter Comics​ in the United States, and is in wide syndication all over the world. 



The Crown is a dramatization of the British royal family during Queen Elizabeth II's reign, from her ascendancy following her father King George VI's death up to Princess Diana and Prince Charle's troubled marriage through the early 90's in the current season four. 

I'm a sucker for palace intrigue. Throw me some elaborate costumes and whispers of betrayal and I'm all in. The Crown takes the genre to another level - in terms of storytelling, staging, and dramatization. I'm not sure how true to life the show is, but I can say that watching it feels like watching history. 

The Crown is about as well written of a show currently out there. There's been multiple times while watching where I've audibly muttered to myself "what a scene," especially during the teaser intros. This may sound slightly snooty, but the Crown feels like one of the paradigms of dramatic writing that will be cited, referenced, and drawn from for years to come. I'm willing to bet that much like the historical plays of Bill the Bard, this is a show that will transcend its own time. 

The Crown is executive produced by Peter Morgan and distributed by Netflix. 




I'm sure Cyberpunk 2077 needs no introduction, but I personally just completed my first campaign of the game, going through two of the available endings. I didn't really follow the game through its development cycle and am uninterested in the ensuing drama that the hype / disappointment cycle has fed. 

Cyberpunk 2077 explores themes and motifs that have really matured for me personally over the past couple of years. I'm a newcomer to cyberpunk as a genre, but the events of the global pandemic and political turmoil have really put into focus the themes that the aesthetic explores: transhuman consciousness, corporate megastates, & environmental disaster. 

God is Man and Man is God. 

Without going into spoilers, one aspect of video games that is fascinating to me is that as the medium matures, so too does the exploration of melancholy and/or bittersweet endings. That does tend to lead to a bit of cognitive dissonance as the narrative arcs of these games - The Last of Us, Red Dead Redemption, Almost Human, to name a few - has to ultimately reconcile with the presented gameplay. Some games do this better than others; in The Last of Us, you play a hardened post apocalyptic murderer, and the game leans fully into a bone chilling exploration of what that really means.

Other games struggle; Red Dead Redemption often has you mowing down armies of cowboys only for characters to be laid low during the cut scenes. What Cyberpunk does very well is make it feel like you are but a cog in mechanisms beyond your control. However strong you are, you are but one person grasping at things beyond your reach. That, more than anything, coalesced what the genre expectations of cyberpunk are and has my brain abuzzing about the psychological and philosophical ramifications therein. 

I'm looking forward to playing this game again when all of the various bugs and features are patched over. 

Cyberpunk 2077 is developed and published by CD Projekt Red. 

There you go! Three things I liked at the tail end of 2020. Do you have any choice picks? Let us know in the comments below! 

​- Ray 
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