Brad Bennett’s favourite things of 2019

2019 has come and gone and I’ve almost been at MobileSyrup for two years.

Last year I re-capped my favourite things with a list that included The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, which came back this year and while season 3 wasn’t as good as season two, it still hit hard and delivered a lot of laughs. My 2016 12-inch Macbook made the cut and I was really into the Huawei P20 Pro (maybe that wasn’t the best call). The still excellent Whack World visual album from Tierra Whack made it on the list too.

This year my list is pretty similar but I didn’t highlight a phone this time around. If you want to hear my phone recommendations, you can listen to the SyurupCast where Dean, Pat, Jon and I battle it out to see what phone from 2019 reigns supreme (spoiler: if you ask me it’s the Pixel 3a).

There are a lot of other things I left off of the list too. There’s no music this year, but if I had to pick something, it might be Tyler the Creator’s surprisingly pop-leaning IGOR]. if not that album, my choice would be Jamila] Woods Legacy!Legacy!.

Overall, if you want to get to know me check out my list of things I loved throughout the year. If you already know me, you know that I always start my last paragraph with ‘Overall.’

Hopefully, I can tone that down in 2020.

The Righteous Gemstones

Saying Danny McBride is underrated probably wouldn’t be accurate. He’s had three top-notch comedies on HBO and numerous movie roles that have left me laughing and quoting endlessly.

The Righteous Gemstones wasn’t on my radar until Crave started promoting it the night it came out. From there, I was hooked. The hilarious story about a southern United States family of world-famous preachers who aren’t exactly the most savoury characters, features a great premise. McBride is also back in action playing the type of character you’d expect from the actor.

You can catch The Righteous Gemstones on Crave with the HBO add-on. Its cast, which includes Walton Goggins, John Goodman and Adam Devine, also doesn’t disappoint.

HBO’s excellent re-telling of the Chernobyl meltdown is also a must-watch from 2019.

The Rewatchables Podcast

Beyond a few tech and video game podcasts, I didn’t listen to many podcasts until this year. My interest in podcasts started with Ian Hardy’s recommendation to listen to the ‘Broken] Record.’

From there I binged almost all of the gut-busting ‘My] Dad Wrote a Porno‘ podcast, before eventually stumbling into ‘The Rewatchables.’

‘The Rewatchables’ is a podcast from The Ringer that focuses on one movie per episode.

In the episodes, a handful of staff from Ringer sit around and talk about the movie for the first half of the show before they jump into categories where they further break down that same film. Categories include the most rewatchable scene, the over-acting award, what aged the worst, who won the movie, half-assed internet research and more.

While these are all good, the best part is just how passionate its hosts and special guests are about the movies they’re talking about. Its a group of people that sound like they’re talking about people they know instead of movie stars, and it’s infectious.

Check it out on Spotify] or Apple Podcasts.

The colour Yellow

To be fair, this one started in 2018 with Apple’s yellow iPhone XR. From there I got a yellow T-shirt and it’s all spiralled out of control since.

Every tech product released in yellow must be mine, including Apple’s subtle iPhone 11, the Switch Lite, a rumoured OnePlus 7T and anything else.

There isn’t much to say here other than I’m glad tech companies decided to utilize yellow in 2019, and that I hope this continues into 2020.

Echo Dot with clock

I reviewed and went hands-on with a ton of smart home devices this year. The single device that rose above them all is Amazon’s Echo Dot with Clock. 

This little device has the perfect smart home gadget theory behind it. Not only is it a smart speaker, but it’s also a clock, as you may have already guessed from its name. This makes the device instantly super usable almost anywhere.

Sure smart displays had their moment in 2019, but the simplicity of the Echo Dot with Clock feels more like the future to me. We don’t need more screens, we just need useful items that hide smart functionality within them.

Halo Reach is back

Halo Reach is back! This Halo is the main game I played during high-school, and now that it’s part of The Master Chief Collection on Xbox One and PC, allowing me to play it all over again.

If you’ve never experienced the Reach campaign, it’s one of the better ones in the Halo series.The story is filled with the spectacle of the first Halo and also includes the grandeur and fantastic level design included in newer titles.

On top of that, it features a fantastic multiplayer that holds up today. Stepping back into those iconic maps with the DMR rifle feels so good at 60fps.

If you have a gaming PC or an Xbox, there has never been a better time to, “Remember Reach.”

Overall Thinking back, there are tons of other things I loved or wanted to love — like Google Stadia, for example — in 2019, but I guess all I can say now is that it was a great year and 2020 here I come!

If you have any questions for me feel free to reach out on Twitter @thebradfad.