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The Critics’ Picks – December 2018 Edition

Every month, ‘The Critic’s Chair’ writers will be making their picks on what you should keep your eyes out for. You can also check out our picks for October and November below:

October

November

Here are our selections for December… 

Critic: Harry Pocket

Pick: ‘Avengers: Endgame’ Trailer

Firstly, the title… I don’t like it. It makes sense both prophetically and thematically given Doctor Strange told Tony Stark, during ‘Infinity War’, ‘We’re in the end game now’. Furthermore, it is likely the end for at least four of original Avengers’ story arc’s, but nevertheless, I’m not a fan.

Secondly, the teaser is brilliant. My guess is that all the footage is from the opening thirty minutes, but the footage they do show looks fantastic, Tony’s monologue drifting through space on the Benatar is a personal highlight. As usual, there are little Easter eggs dropped in there to send fans into overdrive, most importantly, what is Scott Lang doing in 1983.. time travelling… *cough cough* main Avengers 4 plot.

Apart from Geeking out over this teaser, the realisation that some of these characters would be leaving us has set in. It’s no coincidence that all of the original Avengers survive the snap, they will undoubtedly be the driving force of this film and likely end their stories in this fourth instalment of Marvel’s ever-expanding cinematic universe.

This film needs no promotion, but with the release date coming on the 26th April 2019, exactly seven years to the day since The Avengers was released, this is sure to be the cinematic event of the year and complete the fourth of Marvel’s overwhelmingly successful phase of movies. 

Critic: Chris Heley

Pick: Theresa May

The most obvious of them all for this month’s pick is the British Prime Minister – a lot has been said about the PM but most common of all in recent weeks is that “she is in office but not in power”. Fundamentally the fate of Brexit still rests in her hands. At some point in the new year she will have to put her deal to a vote in Parliament – what happens after is anybody’s guess. If it doesn’t pass (which looks most likely at this point) does she call a general election, does she push for a second referendum or does she push ahead with plans for no deal?

There is seemingly no majority in parliament for any options when it comes to Brexit and, with a lack of competent opposition, Britain is drifting ever closer to the 29th March without the public being any the wiser about what might actually happen. January will hopefully give us some form of clarity but I certainly wouldn’t count on it.

Theres May faces a tough job trying to convince her deal is the right one to Parliament. Photo Credit: Ian Davidson Photography / Shutterstock

Critic: Matt Evans

Pick: Australia vs. India (4 Match Test Series) 

I predict King Kohli will win abroad in Australia for the first time in India’s history. Virat barely scored any runs in the opening game and the Indians still went 1-0 up in Adelaide. Then, he hit a century at the Optus Stadium in Perth, but the Aussies struck back and were victorious.

Could this series eclipse the epic contest between the two sides in 2003? When arguably the greatest ever Test team, playing for the last time under Steve Waugh’s captaincy, held on for a 1-1 series draw against a star-studded Indian team. Can Kohli go beyond Messrs Tendulkar, Dravid, Laxman, Sehwag, Ganguly, Kumble and Zaheer Khan to further cement himself as a cricketing deity?

Quite significantly, Australia are playing their first home series since ‘sand-paper-gate’, and their top order naturally looks depleted as they’re still missing their only world class batsmen, Smith and Warner. And by Jove, even with the new image of the Baggy Green, where “winning isn’t everything”, it has already got a bit spicy.

Contrastingly, India have the best batsman in the world, the best fast bowling unit in their history and excellent spinners. They even picked Purjara in the first test (which they failed to do initially against England earlier this year). Plus, they were very competitive in alien English conditions, against Root’s up-and-coming side, so why can’t they win in Australia?

With the series evenly poised at 1-1, roll-on the MGC and the Boxing Day Test.

Critic: Jack Channings

Pick: Luther

The big man Idris Elba returns to our screens New Year’s Day with the fifth instalment of his iconic show, Luther. This latest season appears to be especially nightmarish, with the trailer showing dark cuts of torture scenes, a badly injured DCI Luther, and the return of Alice Webster, who we didn’t get to see last season. With new recruit D.S Catherine Halliday in tow, John Luther will battle the twisted and hidden corruption in the London dark underworld, a journey which is sure to be filled with misdirection, conflict, and sacrifice. Elba describes the new season as “Classic Luther” saying they’re “not reinventing the wheel”. If ‘classic Luther’ is anything to go by, then the new season should be as outstanding as the previous four. Luther provides the perfect splash of darkness needed after all the holiday fun to get you ready for a new year filled with uncertainties. 

Critic: Luke McLoughlin

Pick: La Casa de Papel (Money Heist)

Although it appears to have been around for a while, this is a series which came highly recommended by a mainly European demographic through South America. The UK Netflix titles the show ‘Money Heist’, however, in order to truly appreciate, I believe it is essential to watch the show in its original format of Spanish. A very intricate plot, that requires a certain degree of concentration throughout, leaving those Netflix watchers who spend every episode scrolling through social media on their phones behind. When it comes to forming a plan to rob the Spanish Royal Mint, a complex and innovative approach is going to be required. However, the plan formulated by ‘The Professor’ from start to finish is so expertly crafted that at certain points you can only sit back and appreciate the complexity of the script writing. Alongside a brilliant cast of both ‘good’ and ‘bad’ guys, you find yourself loathing and then admiring characters episode by episode. Definitely a series I hold in high regard for those looking to sink their teeth into something over the festive period.

Critic: Tom Roberts 

Pick: The Joe Rogan Experience With Tyson Fury

After his incredible display and inspirational resurrection, my pick this month is none other than Tyson Fury. Therefore, I implore you to watch, if you have not already, his recent interview with Joe Rogan. The interview was placed on YouTube last month, prior to his bout with WBC Heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder and sees Fury talk in depth about the last few years of his career, from boxing to his personal life and mental state. Fury comes across extremely charismatic and engaging while Rogan is the perfect interviewer, asking the right questions and allowing Tyson to take centre stage. A fascinating look into the complex character that is ‘The Gypsy King’.

Many felt Tyson Fury was robbed of victory in his controversial draw with American, Deontay Wilder. Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins / Shutterstock