Happy Thanksgiving, fellow geeks. Yes, it's a day early, but you'd rather read this while you wait for work to end today than tomorrow while you could be eating, watching football or MST3K, or whatever it is you do on Thanksgiving. Still, day early or not, I'm going to do my best to get you in the holiday spirit, so when it comes your turn to say what you're thankful for at dinner, you'll have something good to say. To get you started, here are five reasons to be thankful you're a geek.
1) Geek TV is great right now Turn on the tube and you're going to find a cornucopia of great geek shows to choose from. This season alone saw the launch of three potentially great geek franchises in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Sleepy Hollow and Almost Human. Then there are the well-established shows like Adventure Time, Archer and Game of Thrones. Doctor Who just turned fifty and celebrated with a massive, worldwide event. Heck, even stuff like The Walking Dead and Supernatural is still there for fans, even if the shows aren't as great as they once were. If I was looking to complain, I'd point out that there's a distinct lack of space opera on TV right now, but I'm not here to complain. I'm here to recognize that there are more great geek shows than you can reasonably watch, and that is a wonderful thing.
2) Geek movies are possibly even better You know what's even better than geek TV right now? Geek movies! Hollywood has embraced geek material like never before, and we get more geek movies than chick flicks these days. Sure, a lot of them are trash, but a lot of everything Hollywood produces is trash, and for every two or three forgettable, third-rate shitshows Hollywood makes, we get a movie like Cabin in the Woods -- smart, fun, genre fare that caters to its audience but still delivers a great story. This year we even got Gravity, a near-future, hard science-fiction epic with A-list actors that might win an Oscar or two. If this isn't a golden age for geek film, then someone better wake me, because I must be dreaming.
3) Video games, too Yes, I've gone on record as being completely unexcited about the next-gen systems that just launched. That doesn't mean I'm down on video games. To the contrary, my lack of excitement about the so-called "next generation" is due to the fact that the current generation is possibly the best one we've ever seen, and I still have about a hundred games I haven't gotten around to trying yet. When I'm playing a video game these days, I am often struck by how truly impressive they are -- the look great, they offer hundreds of hours of gameplay for pennies an hour and they pretty much live up to my dreams of what a game could be when I was growing up and spending all my allowance (and then some) at the arcade. There's never been a better time to be a gamer, and not surprisingly, there's never been more of us out there, whether we play on our consoles, computers, or phones.
4) Geek has gone mainstream It still may not be cool to be a geek, but it certainly isn't any big deal these days. Anyone under thirty probably can't understand how sweet that really is, but for those of us who grew up being ridiculed for buying comics, playing video games and watching Star Trek, it feels like vindication. See, you assholes, we were right. Comics are awesome, video games were the future, and your girlfriend probably had a crush on Wesley Crusher. (As an aside, don't be one of those geeks who spurns nerdy-come-latelys -- the last thing the world needs is elitist hipster geeks.)
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5) The Thanksgiving Mystery Science Theater 3000 marathon has returned! This is a bit smaller in scope than my other thankfulnesses, but hey, it's fucking rad for a hardcore fan like me. Back in the day, Comedy Central would run a marathon of Mystery Science Theater 3000 episodes all day on Thanksgiving (see, the movies were turkeys, so...) for those of us who could give a shit about football and parades. Then the show ended, and to get your Turkey Day MST3K fix you had to own a bunch of episodes or spend all day on YouTube, and it just wasn't the same. Well, for the show's 25th anniversary, the marathon returns! Six classic episodes will stream on Thanksgiving, starting at 10 a.m. local time, filling your day with terrible films and great jokes. Truly, our cup runneth over.