My Octopus Teacher

This week I watched My Octopus Teacher on Netflix. It's a narrated documentary by Craig Foster about bonding with an octopus in the ocean. The film is visually stunning and extremely heartwarming. If you are looking for a perspective reset and something as far away from the pandemic as possible, this is the film to watch.

Books & Comics in 2020

My favourite non-fiction book I read this year is Ego Is The Enemy by Ryan Holiday. Having already become receptive to Stoicism through the Tim Ferriss podcast and The Daily Stoic (also by Ryan Holiday), Ego Is The Enemy arrived at the right time for me and was a great navigational reset on how to look at the world, as chaotic as it as at the moment.  

Music in 2020

I really came to appreciate music as being the nectar for the soul during lockdown. It also helped that lots of Irish artists picked up the pandemic and ran away with it in terms of fantastic releases and streamed performances. There were so many great streams and the Journal of Music still do a great job at colating everything in their weekly concert planner (which you can subscribe to here).

Movies in 2020

With the cinema becoming a potential arena of peril because of COVID, new movie releases were few and far between, and so is my selection of movies for 2020. Aside from re-watching all of the Marvel MCU movies in order, only a few movies jumped out for consideration this year. Top of the list is Ford Vs Ferrari (Le Mans '66). It came out in 2019 but I didn't get around to seeing it until early this year. For me, this film is a near perfect blockbuster.

TV in 2020

Needless to say, my TV viewing increased this year due to lockdown and some shows really did deliver the ideal escapism at times. Top of the list by far of the best shows I watched this year is Normal People. Without expecting to be, I was quickly worrying non stop about Connell & Marianne's many life issues and I was thankful to be able to binge watch this great show to forgo the weeks of anguish!

Book Review: Supercrash by Darryl Cunningham

This week I read the riveting & eye-opening Supercrash. Using the medium of comic strips, the author deftly delivers the outrageous facts and context behind the 2008 financial crash, it's beginnings in the theories and influence of Ayn Rand and her objectivists, and the systematic hijacking of the economic and political world since. Most presciently, the division between left and right wing is brilliantly explained, using succinct captions and poignant illustrations. A must-read explainer for the world we find ourselves in today.

First Thought Talks

The First Thought Talks are an excellent set of talks in the Galway International Arts Festival that this year are streamed online and available to view on the festival's YouTube channel. There was an excellent talk on practical options for Ireland in addressing the climate crisis. The last day of talks will be streamed tomorrow, Saturday Sep 12.

Transformers War for Cybertron

Chapter 1: Siege of Transformers War for Cybertron was released on Netflix this week. I was unconvinced after the first episode, however after watching a few more, I really got into the slow pace and dark atmosphere of this new anime show. This is not your childhood's Transformers, nor is it anything like the Michael Bay explosion-fest, and is more akin to the IDW comic series, telling the story of the civil war on Cybertron following Megatron's uprising.


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