2022 Recap – The Cool Stuff

Category : Monthly recap

Hello everyone! The year is almost over and it was ripe with great music, books and discoveries.

Initially, I wanted to send out one big yearly recap/recommendation list but it kept growing and growing so I decided to cut it in two. I found new bands and read books through friend’s recommendations and samples from Bandcamp’s great lists and articles. You might find something you like in there!

Best albums:

More of the music I liked on Bandcamp.

My Best of 2022 Playlist on Spotify. Be warned, it gets a bit emo 😛 

This is also the year I made an official Utown soundtrack, which I obsessively curated from the big list I kept when I was making the book. It follows the mood and the pacing of the comic and features deep cuts and gems from the 80’s-90s as well as more recent tracks. It’s REALLY good.

Best stuff on screen (series or movies):

  • The Bear
  • Never have I Ever
  • Everything everywhere all at once
  • RRR
  • Turning Red
  • The Owl house
  • Heartstopper

Coolest artists:

  • Adam de Souza, aka Kumerish and his fantastic, ongoing comic Blind Alley.
  • C.M. Thomas, a great photographer with an eye for the eerie and the familiar.
  • Alariko for their stunning, unique background illustrations.
  • Violaine Briat and Rodney R. Rodney, the weirdest/ most endearing webcomic out there.

Coolest people:

  • Aubrey Gordon and Micheal Hobbs for their podcast Maintenance Phase on diet culture, body image and fatphobia. It’s both informative, researched and incredibly funny and it helped me in ways I didn’t think I needed.
  • Struthless, just a cool illustrator giving out art/life advice on Youtube. I wanna be friends with him. Bonus accent!
  • KingJvpes, a San Francisco film photographer who shares tips and tricks online. I’m really grateful for people who take the time to explain their craft.
  • Kathryn Nikolai, the writer and narrator of Nothing Much Happens, the bedtime story podcast that has gotten me through the worst nights of CPAP insomnia. If you can’t sleep for various reasons, I HIGHLY recommend giving it a listen.

Best books:

  • The Green Bone Saga by Fonda Lee. My favorite books of the year. Fantasy Chinese triad clans with MAGIC POWERS. Ambitious, lore-heavy universe.
  • The Iron Widow by Xiran Jay Zhano. Super driven protagonist claws her way up a cruel and patriarchal society. She fights giant alien bugs in Qi-powered mechas, she’s angry most of the time and really wants to smooch.
  • It’s Lonely at the Center of the Earth by Zoey Thorogood. Zoey’s autobiography comic breaks the form all throughout the book. The tools she uses changes. The way she draws herself changes. It’s weird and gut-wrenching and totally mind-bending.
  • The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows by John Koenig. There is something incredibly satisfying about putting a word on a feeling you could never explain. The book itself is a beautiful little object that fits the whole sad, dark academia aesthetic perfectly. Has to be read in the dark, while staring longingly at the rain-covered window.

So there you have it! What did you enjoy this year? Favorite movie, favorite book or favorite comic perhaps? I’d love to know 🙂