Media Consumption 2014

comment 1
books / comics / film / sitting in the dark with strangers

Here’s a pretty thorough list of all the media I consumed in 2014. We’ll start with Sitting in the Dark With Strangers, my yearly movie list. I’m basically happy with this preferential ranking, although a few things could move around.

1. The Grand Budapest Hotel

2. Under the Skin

3. Inherent Vice

4. The Wind Rises

5. Gunday

6. John Wick

7. Jodorowsky’s Dune

8. Blue Ruin

9. Guardians of the Galaxy 

10. Godzilla

11. A Most Wanted Man

12. 22 Jump Street

13. The Lego Movie 

14. Edge of Tomorrow

15. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

16. Fury

17. A Field in England

18. Noah

19. The Guest

20. Nightcrawler

21. The Lunchbox

22. Gone Girl

23. Why Don’t You Play In Hell?

24. The Raid 2

25. Captain America: The Winter Soldier

26. Life Itself

27. Snowpiercer

28. Neighbors

29. X-Men: Days of Future Past

30. The Fault in Our Stars

31. Big Hero 6

32. Interstellar

33. Anchorman 2

34. 300: Rise of an Empire

35. Journey to the West

36. Dracula Untold

37. Only Lovers Left Alive

38. Muppets Most Wanted

39. How to Train Your Dragon 2

40. Jersey Boys


Movies I still need to see:


The Rover


The Purge: Anarchy



The Interview


The Double

The Final Member

We Are the Best!



The Congress

The Babadook


The Duke of Burgundy



Next, here’s all the books I read this year in chronological order. Links are to reviews here on the blog. Stars indicate books of exceptional quality.

Two Gentlemen of Lebowski: A Most Excellent Comedie and Tragical Romance, by Adam Bertocci

Low Town, by Daniel Polansky

The Fictional Man, by Al Ewing

*Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, by John le Carré

The Savage Detectives, by Roberto Bolaño

Shovel Ready, by Adam Sternbergh

Vampires in the Lemon Grove and Other Stories, by Karen Russell

Consider Phlebas, by Iain M. Banks

Old Filth, by Jane Gardam

Anno Dracula, by Kim Newman

St. Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves, by Karen Russell

*The Player of Games, by Iain M. Banks

*Cataract City, by Craig Davidson

*The Honourable Schoolboy, by John le Carré

The Weirdness, by Jeremy Bushnell

Claire DeWitt and the City of the Dead, by Sara Gran

*Smiley’s People, by John le Carré

Declare, by Tim Powers (audiobook)

Economics: The User’s Guide: A Pelican Introduction, by Ha-Joon Chang

*The Martian, by Andy Weir (audiobook)

*The Orenda, by Jospeh Boyden

The Apocalypse Codex, by Charles Stross

The Slynx, by Tatyana Tolstaya

The Trouble With Brunch: Work, Class and the Pursuit of Leisure, by Shawn Micallef

Annihilation, by Jeff VanderMeer

A Delicate Truth, by John le Carré

Authority, by Jeff VanderMeer

Tokyo Vice, by Jake Adelstein (audiobook)

Glow, by Ned Beauman

Of Dice and Men: The Story of Dungeons and Dragons and the People Who Play It, by David Ewalt (audiobook)

*Augustus, by John Williams

The Bone Clocks, by David Mitchell

*Nixonland: The Rise of a President and the Fracturing of America, by Rick Perlstein (audiobook)

The Sugar Frosted Nutsack, by Mark Leyner (audiobook)

*Will Starling, by Ian Weir

Perfidia, by James Ellroy

They Came From Within (Second Edition), by Caelum Vatsndal

A Once Crowded Sky, by Tom King

Nice Day For Murder: Poems For James Cagney, by Kimmy Beach

Nineteen Seventy Four, by David Peace (audiobook)

The Gods of Gotham, by Lyndsay Faye

Bollywood: A Guidebook to Popular Hindi Cinema, by Tejaswini Ganti

The Third Reich, by Roberto Bolaño

*The Invisible Bridge: The Fall of Nixon and The Rise of Reagan, by Rick Perlstein (audiobook)

Acceptance, by Jeff VanderMeer

The Magician’s Land, by Lev Grossman

For comics, books I enjoyed included Fables, Satellite Sam, Saga, The Fade Out, Sex Criminals, Blacksad and others.

I don’t watch too much TV these days, but Game of Thrones was really good, as was Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, Archer Vice, Fargo (which I still need to finish), True DetectiveMad Men, naturally, and maybe a couple of others I can’t think of off the top of my head.

For video games, I liked Dragon Age: Inquisition, 80 DaysCrusader Kings II, Saints Row IVEuropa Universalis IV, The Wolf Among Us, and I spent probably an inordinate amount of time playing Dynasty Warriors Gundam III. No regrets. GTA V was a letdown.

For good podcasts, here’s another list, this time alphabetical.

Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History

The Dollop

El Diabolik’s World of Psychotronic Soundtracks

NPR: Planet Money

Rachel and Miles X-Plain the X-Men

Shut Up & Sit Down

Trash, Art and the Movies

The Worst Idea of All Time

You Must Remember This

For YouTube channels, I watched a lot of The Dice Tower, Machinima, Oliver Harper, Super Bunnyhop, Filmmaker IQ, Crash Course and CGP Grey.

That about covers it. I occasionally went outside sometimes too.

Did you like anything this last year? Let me know in the comments.



The Author

Matt Bowes is a self-proclaimed cultural commentator/arbiter of good taste from Edmonton, Alberta. He enjoys movies and books, and writes about them sometimes at

1 Comment

  1. Laurence Miall says

    On your to-watch movie list, I’m with you on Birdman. Very intrigued by premise of this film. Babadook, I would like to see again. It starts strong but I am still not sure if I enjoyed how it all ended up.

    Books? One of my favourites from 2014 was The Freedom in American Song.

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