The Critics’ Picks – January 2019 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, November and December 2018 below:




Here are our selections for January… 

Critic: Jack Channings

Pick: Brexit

Over the course of February, and on into March, the Brexit negotiations will be going mental. With Parliament voting against delaying our exit, but also voting against a no-deal scenario, and now the EU maintaining their position that re-negotiations aren’t viable, the government is going to have to pull something extraordinary out of the bag in the next six weeks. Britain’s exit is an unprecedented event in EU history, meaning there is no road map or a clear-cut way in which to separate two enormous bodies such as Britain and the EU. This process will really test the limits of our system of democracy and will fundamentally change how our Government, Parliament, and British politics in general operates. Make sure to keep an eye on the news, and maybe try and catch a Parliamentary debate or Prime Minister’s Question’s on BBC Parliament, over the next few weeks so you don’t fall behind on a story that even our politicians don’t really understand.

Critic: Matt Evans

Pick: West Indies Vs England – 3 Match Test Series

Is Joe Root’s Test side finally fulfilling their potential? A notorious first inning’s collapse – all out for 77 – in Barbados means the England side have a New Years resolution to ponder still. With the Ashes at the backend of the summer there are a number of questions that Ed Smith, Trevor Baylis and Root will want settling during the three Test series. Can either Burns or Jennings cement an opening spot? Is Bairstow the answer at three? (I certainly think he’s work sticking with). Is Ben Foakes, the supreme gloveman of the land, the long-term wicketkeeper? How will England balance their plethora of allrounders? And will Stuart Broad make himself a certainty on the team sheet once again? Surely the prospect of the Dukes ball and the potential of one of ‘those’ spells means it would be foolish to write him off before Australia roll into Edgbaston on 1st August.

It would also be foolish if England’s focus is anywhere but on this young, exciting Windies side.

Critic: Chris Heley

Pick: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D)

The first term Congresswoman from Queens, New York, better known as just AOC, has become, in just one month as a sitting congresswoman, a national name – a feat that is almost unheard of.  AOC has been a permanent fixture in recent weeks on US TV, from the Colbert show to enraged Fox News presenters talking about her dramatic rise to notoriety, it is almost impossible to get away from the Congresswoman who defeated a 10 term incumbent Democrat to win her party’s nomination. Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez may well just be having her 15 minutes of fame but her party doesn’t seem to think it is going to be just 15 minutes. Ocasio-Cortez is at the forefront of making “socialism cool” for millennial’s and generation z, and the DNC got her, a 29-year-old only a month into being a sitting member of Congress, to give advice to other members of the party (including senior Democrats) on how to use social media. Ocasio-Cortez is clearly very adept at using online media, with 2.6 million followers on Twitter (a million of which she has gained in the last month) and 2 million on Instagram and with the increasing importance of online media in campaigning, Ocasio-Cortez, if she isn’t already, could well become a notable force and voice in Democratic politics. At 29 though, she has a while to wait to make a move on a national campaign and the presidency, but perhaps she is the early frontrunner for 2028.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez speaking during the Woman’s Unity Rally in New York. Photo Credit: lev radin / Shutterstock

Critic: Tom Roberts

Pick: The Joe Rogan Experience – Mike Tyson

Earlier this month Joe Rogan hosted Mike Tyson on his extremely popular podcast. The two dive deep into the life of ‘The Baddest Man On The Planet’, discussing topics varying from Tyson’s upbringing, his use of recreational drugs and his boxing career. It is an intriguing and shocking listen as you learn about ‘Iron Mike’s’ life and the difficulties he faced with an insane amount of fame for a person of such a young age. Furthermore, once you have finished this episode, don’t stop there, Rogan has a catalogue of fantastic episodes for you to listen to, which includes the likes of Elon Musk, Gary Vaynerchuk and Leah Remini.