At the end of 2014, The A.V. Club asked writers, directors, actors, musicians, comedians, and gadabouts what piece of pop culture they liked the most in 2014, with two pieces coming out of that query. At that same time, we also asked them what entertainment they were most excited for in 2015. The first half of those answers is below, with the second running tomorrow.
In 2015 I’m looking forward to Father John Misty’s new CD (I loved the first one) and Better Call Saul. And I was kinda disappointed in the Borderlands pre-sequel so I’m looking forward to the other Borderlands incarnation that comes out sometime next year.
John Darnielle of The Mountain Goats and author of Wolf In White Van
Ti West is directing a big-budget Western called In A Valley Of Violence that comes out next year, so probably that. I don’t usually know what’s coming out before it comes out, and I seldom see any non-horror movies, but I’ll watch anything Ti West does. He’s amazing.
I’m really looking forward to the forthcoming Death Cab For Cutie album. It’s been a while since their last offering, and I’m always excited to hear new songs from another of those “masterclass” bands. I’m also hopeful that I’ll find an alternative word for “masterclass” in 2015. Sorry.
The new Faith No More album. They are bigger than life. The fact that they have enslaved a mentally unstable gimp and are using him as a promotional tool may upset some consumers.
I can not describe how hungry I am for Tom Scharpling to bring back The Best Show in a new and improved and more free format. I don’t even say excited, you’ll notice—I say hungry. The Best Show has always been independent, and underground, and a guiding light for myself and many other comedians who want to do things a little differently with a lot of integrity. The world needs Scharpling back and I can’t wait to see what happens now that he is in full control of his output, can make money on it, and has even more freedom to speak his mind that the ludicrously free WFMU already offered him… I can’t be the only one who feels like the phonies must be shaking in their boots, because Kid Jersey is firing up the steamroller. Too many chumps got too comfortable during Tom’s downtime, and I gleefully await seeing how he comes out of the gate in his return. Also, because I am a male in my 30s who wears glasses, Star Wars. Doy.
Patton Oswalt, comedian and author of the upcoming book Silver Screen Fiend
The Constant Teenager at the back of my brain can’t wait for Avengers: Age Of Ultron and Mad Max: Fury Road. And the crabby adult in the front lobe section of my head can’t wait to get his hands on Hilary Mantel’s The Mirror And The Light. That’s my Anglophile third season of The Wire.
Well, they’re filming The Martian right now, but I’d have to assume it’s for 2016 release. I’m super psyched about Avengers: Age Of Ultron. Equally psyched about Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Between the two I’d have to go with Star Wars because, ever optimistic as I am, I’m looking to it to restore my faith in the Star Wars universe. But no pressure, J.J.
Side note to J.J.: If you need a droid for pick-ups, you can use mine.
Filmmaker-director Peter Pardini made a documentary on the band Chicago titled Now More Than Ever: The History Of Chicago that is to be released in 2015. I have been a fan of this band for decades and it’s time that their full story be told, warts and all, and I think Mr. Pardini is going to do just that. They are so much more than the ballad machine everyone thinks they are.
Full disclosure: I was interviewed for the film and while I have no idea if I made the final cut, the idea of being alongside my musical heroes for even one frame is like a dream come true. So yeah, kind of, sort of a selfish choice. If that disqualifies this pick… I don’t know, Star Wars VII?
The Entourage movie. No question. June 5, 2015. I’ve already got it written down in my phone. It’s like I hate-watched that show so much that I hate-secreted it into a feature film and I couldn’t be more excited about it.
I would prefer we just skip 2015 and get right to 2016, when Twin Peaks returns to the airwaves. The entire day it was announced it was coming back, I had the biggest smile on my face. After so many disappointing reunions—Van Halen, the Star Wars prequels, Outkast, and most of all, AfterMASH—I really hope Lynch and Frost will school everyone on how it’s done.
Angel Olsen, artist behind Burn Your Fire For No Witness, The A.V. Club’s favorite album of 2014
I’m really looking forward to hearing the next Serial series. I like the idea of giving these people another chance, and not only another chance but millions of different perspectives on it.
John Wick 2 and 3, to be released every six months in perpetuity. If those don’t come out in time, the new Mad Max.
I am looking forward to Sisters, which is a movie where Tina Fey and Amy Poehler play sisters and Amy gets swept off her feet by a giant Ukrainian monster. (Me.)
Party, party, party, party, party, party, party, party, party, party, party, party, party.
Rumors abound of a new novel by Jonathan Franzen coming out in the fall. He is my favorite living author today, and I’ve gotten so much enjoyment from reading his novels and essays. The Corrections made me feel things about a book that I didn’t think were possible, and Freedom did the exact same thing, only in completely different ways. It’s real rare, but sometimes a person is able to describe a certain emotional experience we all assumed was completely unexplainable. Franzen does that 25 times in every novel he has written, and without fail, when I’m reading him, as some point my jaw will drop, I’ll look up from the pages and say “God… DAMN.” He’s the fucking best, and I want to be his friend.
This is totally cheating and against the spirit of everything, but we honestly have to say the release of the Night Vale novel in the fall. We’ve both wanted to write novels since understanding what those words meant, so having that actually happen is just the most exciting thing in our lives right now.
We’re also both really looking forward to the Let The Right One In play opening in New York. The creative team behind this version did the play Black Watch and the Broadway version of Once, which were two of the best stage shows of the past 10 years.
Damien Chazelle, who gave us this year’s Whiplash, is working with Miles Teller on a movie musical. I can’t wait to see what they cook up.
I’m so excited for Netflix bringing back the original cast of Wet Hot American Summer to do an eight episode series. [Netflix may not be bringing back the cast, though it is bringing back the movie’s concept. —ed.] I was obsessed with the movie when it came out. I wish they would do that with Michelle Pfeiffer in Grease 2. I really do.