The media of today is hard to keep up with: It comes from so many directions and in so many forms that it's next to impossible to keep track of your favorite artists, let alone new ones. Because we're devoted to your convenience, we're going to pick five things each week that rise above the pale, that have some distinction, that, ultimately, we think are worthy of your notice. Feel free to sound off on anything you plan on picking up on release day in the comments.
5. Safe Haven by Nicholas Sparks Everyone's favorite "chick-flick"-style author is back, with another story of whacked-out love and confused men and women. This time he seems to be going for a classic Victorian tale of love-regardless-of-mysterious-past, with a mystifying young lady arriving in a small town and wooing a couple of men. She has a dark secret haunting her, but as she begins to let her guard down, the two potential lovers learn more. Regardless of what happens, we're pretty sure you'll tear up at some point -- or at least you're supposed to tear up at one point. We'll probably just laugh, because we're scared of emotions.
4. My Son, My Son, What Have Ye Done? (DVD) This is the first time legendary filmmakers David Lynch and Werner Herzog have worked together, and the result is a film that is exactly as strange as you'd imagine from these two. With Herzog at the director's helm and Lynch producing, you can expect a wild, non-linear descent into madness. The story of a man who stabs his mother with an antique sword before taking hostages is recounted in a tale based very, very loosely on reality. Willem Dafoe, Chloë Sevigney and Michael Shannon star.
3. Professor Layton and the Unwound Future (DS) We had a chance to see this in action last week, and those early impressions point toward a solid game. If you're unfamiliar with the series, imagine a world where a puzzle-solving detective wanders about with his young assistant solving complex puzzles and riddles all while unraveling a larger mystery, and you'll get the picture.
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2. X-9 Secret Agent Corrigan, by Archie Goodwin, Al Williamson This collected hardcover of Al Williamson's run on the delightfully campy Secret Agent Corrigan is a must-have for lovers of classic comics. Archie Goodwin's writing is stellar, and the series, although slightly bizarre, is a landmark of storytelling and art.
1. Halo Reach (Xbox 360) Unless you've somehow managed to avoid every retail outlet in the state for the last month, you're probably well aware that Halo Reach is being released today. If you didn't stay up until midnight to pick it up last night, then you'll want to snag it today so you can be one of the first at the office to play through the final entry in the Halo series. We know they lose the planet Reach, but how it happens is still a mystery.