I began doing this in 2019. Why not continue the tradition? Here we go. I will dive into some of my favorites in movies, TV, pop culture, sports and more. If I am being totally honest with you here, I didn’t check out too many new movies or shows in 2020. It was a weird year across the board.
Best Movie – Hamilton
Technically, Hamilton is nothing new. That being said, Disney+ dropped it and people went ape shit. I had known about the musical through one of my best friends, who was completely obsessed. I now know why. I have watched this and listened to the soundtrack more than I can count at this point. I was satisfied to say the least (see what I did there?).
Best Performance – Daveed Diggs, Hamilton
Fuck it. Keep the Hamilton train rolling. Daveed Diggs is absolutely glorious in his roles as Lafayette and then the boisterous Thomas Jefferson. The way he is able to bounce back and forth between accents while singing and dancing is insane. His stage presence is dominant. That is sharing a stage with other fantastic performances.
Best TV Show – The Last Dance
Not technically a show so to speak because it is a documentary. But, the 10 part series showed a different side to the Michael Jordan era that was much needed. I love that it didn’t shy away from painting Jordan as the asshole he was. I don’t say that in a derogatory manner because that personality is why he changed the landscape of basketball. One of my favorite parts of that documentary is when Jordan says let’s see if the trash talk starts at 0-0 and not when it’s a 5-6 point game. I have literally believed in that principle for years. There is nothing in competition that drives me nuts more than the impotent debutante who talks shit when the ball is in their court only. Be able to run your mouth when your back is against the wall too. Otherwise, you’re just a bitch.
Best TV Show Character – Grogu, The Mandalorian
“Baby Yoda” took over 2020. The memes have been out of control. Although I haven’t watched The Mandalorian yet (surprise surprise, always late to the party), I already know about Grogu. Despite never seeing the show, it didn’t stop me from buying a beanie in Disney World with Grogu on it. Best $11 I have ever spent in Disney.
Music and Pop Culture
Best Slang Term – Potato
There was a tweet that went viral calling someone a potato to insinuate their stupidity. Anytime I can find a new way to call someone stupid, that will always take the cake for me.
Best Couple – Atlanta Falcons and Blown Leads
I couldn’t think of anyone that stands out so I went with something that goes great together and I enjoy watching.
Best Meme – Baby Yoda
See above for popularity. There was literally one of those dumb quizzes “which is your Baby Yoda meme?” Of course, I took it. Mine said “Michael acting surprised when HR tells him he can’t call someone a cunt.” Accurate.
Best Bromance – Chris Jericho and Sammy Guevara
If you’re not an AEW fans, you won’t understand. The Inner Circle had a great 2020 and two of their members (known as Le Sex Gods) have a bromance of the ages. I am sucker for a good bromance.
Best Artist – Kid Cudi
Man on the Moon III: The Chosen…enough said.
Best Song – Lovin on You, Luke Combs
Love me some Luke Combs and absolutely love this song.
Best Quote – “Excuse Me, I’m Speaking.” – Kamala Harris
One of the funniest parts in the vice presidential debate was Harris shutting down Mike Pence from basically filibustering the debate.
Best Video Game – Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War
With sports games being an afterthought these days and new gen systems on the horizon, I can’t think of too many desirable games that came out. I loved the campaign in the newest installment of COD and the multiplayer has a very MW2/MW3 feel to it. After years of stinkers, the last two CODs have been fantastic.
Best Athlete – Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City Chiefs
His playoff run at the beginning of 2020 is one for the ages. He finished the postseason with 10 Passing TDs and 901 yards in three games. The Chiefs scored at least 31 in all three. The most impressive part of the run was coming from behind in all three games. Once he got going, there was this feeling of “oh shit, game over.” They came back from 24-0, 10-0 and 20-10.
Best Wrestler – Kenny Omega, AEW
The Cleaner is back. After a long build to a heel turn, it finally happened when Don Callis and Omega joined up as Omega captured the AEW Championship from Jon Moxley. Omega will now carry the brand heading into 2021 and I can’t fucking wait. It kicks off strong with a title match against Ray Fenix.
Best Game – Kansas City Chiefs and San Francisco 49ers, Super Bowl
Last year’s Super Bowl was fantastic start to finish. Jimmy G played a great game until the last 7-8 minutes before the Chiefs came back. We got to see masterful play-calling from Andy Reid and Kyle Shanahan. We saw the late game heroics of Patrick Mahomes, who didn’t play all that great for the first three quarters.
Best Team – Los Angeles Lakers
LeBron captures another title with another organization in an odd year for the NBA. Anthony Davis captures his first. Those two looked dominant doing so. The Lakers went on to finish the postseason 16-5. The only series to go beyond 5 games was the NBA Finals against the Miami Heat which went 6.
Best Comeback – Mavs def. Clippers (Game 4)
It didn’t take too long to figure out that Luka Doncic is going to be a mega star. Despite losing in 6 to the Clippers, Luka was incredible even through an injury. In Game 4, the Mavs found themselves down 54-33. They ended up winning on a deep buzzer beater from Luka 135-133. He finished the game 43 points, 17 rebounds and 13 assists.
Best Moment – Tyrann Mathieu Holding Lombardi Trophy
There were plenty of great moments, but none topped Tyrann Mathieu holding the Lombardi for me. I still vividly remember the morning I found he was being kicked off of LSU’s football team. He got crushed on social media and by talking heads. Then he checked into a rehab facility (for weed for God sake) and went ghost mode. He eventually declared for the draft and I remember Saints fans wanting him. I just kept thinking, why? So he can be in same situation. Fast forward, he has been one of the best defensive players in the league for several years. Last year, we saw him as one of the best players on the Chiefs loaded roster. Watching him hold that trophy was magical. If you like a good comeback story, he is it.
Best Coach – Brian Flores / Erik Spoelstra
I couldn’t decide between them. I choose both coaches ironically coaching in Miami. Flores took over a dumpster fire of a Miami Dolphins team. He now has them on the bubble for the playoffs and notched a double digit win season in year two.
Meanwhile the Heat took everyone by surprise in the playoffs reaching the Finals and battering some tough opponents along the way including the Bucks and Celtics. Top to bottom, that roster all played their part. It was one of the most fun forms of team basketball you could watch.
My Takeaways on 2020’s Biggest Topics
Covid19 – I have written column after column regarding Covid. Watching people handle the pandemic has been one of the most infuriating selfish denials I have ever seen. Apparently, 346k deaths in a calendar year is no big deal. I love hearing people talk about other countries that did not shut down, but those people ignore the restrictions in place, how those citizens respond to their governments and the numbers in those countries.
I think my favorite phrase in 2020 is “yEaH. BuT, tHe fLu KiLLs MoRe PeOpLe.”
Hopefully we can respond better after a year of this shit, but I doubt it.
Joe Biden v Donald Trump – I would be lying if I said I wasn’t nervous regardless of what the polls said about Trump v Biden. Knowing it would be days before receiving the final results, my anxiety was running. I didn’t want to see another four years of Trump, his Twitter, his bullshit and his cult-like following screaming MAGA 2020. Now, I can scream get bent. Watching him attempt to change the results is the most absurd attempt at deconstruction on the freedom they claim to be in question from the other side.
HoW dOeS He WiN tHe MoSt CoUnTiEs AnD StiLL LoSe? RiGgEd!
Because, you know, coastal states and countries are more heavily populated. Places like Loving County, Texas have less than 200 people. That’s why. Biden not only captured the most votes. He overturned several battleground states. I live in one of them.
Because of the outcry from Trump and his staunch supporters, it is like watching him lose over and over again because of his legal actions. It’s been glorious watching the most arrogant piece of shit not be able to handle losing.
sToP tHe CoUnT!
Biden dethroning Trump is fantastic. Kamala Harris being the first woman, let alone black woman as VP is equally refreshing.
Black Lives Matter – In 2020, a major positive is the push behind Black Lives Matter. After videos of the killings of Ahmaud Arbery and George Floyd surfaced, the conversation began moving gained the most momentum it has since Black Lives Matter began. There were active protests across sports and major cities in the US. It was great to see so many people rallying around the injustice. Without it, there likely would not have been legal action against those who carried out the killings. I hope as the needle continues to move that white people have more open and honest dialogue with friends of different races and backgrounds. It’s painfully obvious the ones that don’t.
Kim Jong Un Disappearance – That was a wild few weeks. I can’t even remember exactly when it happened. The North Korean leader went MIA for roughly three weeks and people thought he died. That would’ve rocked the world a little bit. Pretty wild stuff.
QAnon – LOL. Bless these people’s hearts. There isn’t enough tin foil to go around on every baseless claim this crowd makes. My personal favorite was commenting to one guy earlier this year only to be threatened by a friends of his who is an ex-con who shot someone on a bet from a guy who was acquitted (not not-guilty) of sexually assaulting a 13 year old.
2020 in Memoriam
I have attached a video to commemorate all those we lost in 2020. I do want to touch on a few of them.
I wrote this in my column talking about the passing of Kobe Bryant…
When celebrities we admire or like pass on, a wave of emotion can hit us despite never meeting these people. It seems silly to mourn someone you never met. But the reality is, they don’t know us, but we feel like we know them. We watch them. We admire them.
Let’s start with Kobe. I will just re-share what I wrote when it happened.
Every time Kobe took that last second shot, we were clinging on to the magic that would follow.
It hurts that we lost one of game’s best in such an unfortunately tragic way.
I stepped away from my phone for a few minutes only to come back to 19 texts. All of which containing the same message, Kobe Bryant died. I couldn’t believe what I was reading. Those words sting. Because of how youthful he was even after two decades of high level basketball, it is shocking thus making the sting hurt a little more.
RIP Kobe. Thank you for years of exciting basketball Black Mamba. We will forever remember you every single time we shoot a ball of paper into a trash can or shoot an actual basketball and yell KOBE.
Another one that stung pretty bad was Alex Trebek. I feel like Jeopardy at some point or another was part of your routine. When he was diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer, that is a tough hand to be dealt. He managed to fight for a long time while maintaining his duty as host of Jeopardy. When discussing GOATs, he is it for gameshows. From his demeanor to his intelligence to his snarky comments when the situation calls for it, Trebek was the man. I found an Alex Trebek Funko Pop figure a year or two ago. It was already one my favorites and now you can magnify that by a million. Unfortunately, we will never hear another person say “I’d like to make it true daily double, Alex.”
Jon Huber Aka Mr. Brodie Lee Aka THe Exalted One
This one was unexpected and insane. He was in line for a big push in AEW before going out of action with a lung issue that took a turn for the worst. After the news broke of his passing, so many wonderful stories were told about his leaving nature and how much of a family man he was. AEW did the best job imaginable with their episode of Dynamite celebrating his life. President of AEW, Tony Khan offered Lee’s real life son Brodie a contract and vowed to take care of Lee’s family. You could feel the pain and love in the episode.
Earlier this year, Lee debuted as The Exalted One of the The Dark Order leaving shockwaves in AEW. After spending 8 years in WWE not getting the treatment he deserved, he was primed to be a main eventer for AEW. He proved he could do it in the ring and on the mic. RIP Mr. Brodie Lee.
Remember when Prince T’Challa arose from the wreckage ready for battle with Erik Killmonger and he screamed “I never yielded!?” Boseman himself never yielded. He stoically battled cancer without making it known to the public before his unexpected passing. He wanted to live his life without the outside noise about his health. Boseman was such an amazing actor and person, admired by his peers. Enough for his inner circles to keep quiet about his diagnoses. Much like Lee and Bryant, I could not believe what I was reading when the news broke. I thought it was fake.
Boseman played a handful of roles celebrating pride for his race. The most obvious being Black Panther. It didn’t stop there as he played Thurgood Marshall, James Brown, Jackie Robinson and Floyd Little.
My favorite role aside from Black Panther was his character Vontae Mack in Draft Day, one of my favorite sports movies. He didn’t have many scenes or many lines. But the best scene in the movie is when Sonny Weaver drafts him first overall and the look on his face that follows. It was eventually revealed in the end that Weaver wrote himself a note and put it in his pocket that read “Vontae Mack No Matter What.” After Mack had pitched himself to Sonny multiple times in the movie, it was all for nothing as Sonny knew that was his guy all along.
RIP Chadwick. Wakanda Forever and I leave you all with this gem.
Here is a look at the other celebs we lost in 2020…