For our last series, we talked about our favorite foods but we’ve moved on to other favs: our media consumption. These are the books, movies, songs, and social accounts that inspire us on the regular! This week we talk to our resident Star Wars nut, Jacob Wilder.
What are your favorite movies?
- The Godfather. Period.
- I would say any of the Star Wars films as a saga (save for the Disney Trilogy, the spin-offs were actually good though)
- Lord of the Rings Trilogy. Also period.
- Tombstone. Val Kilmer plays one of my favorite Old West characters in this. So many memorable lines. Did I mention how great Val Kilmer is in this movie?
- School of Rock. Peak Jack Black and Rock and Roll. Really what more do you need for a great movie?
What are your favorite albums/artists of all time?
- Led Zeppelin is the best band of all time, you won’t change my mind on this. Stairway is a masterpiece, even if it is overplayed. You see the Mona Lisa all the time but no one questions that. Over Hills and Far Away is also amazing. My favorite song though is “Hey Hey What Can I Do?” The acoustic guitar is so groovy.
- My second favorite is kind of weird considering the first, but Blink-182 is amazing. Can’t get enough of their music. I’m glad they’ve picked up Matt Skiba and are putting out new music. It’s not as good as Take Off or Ranch, but it’s new and it’s still pretty good.
- I also really like the Foo Fighters. I was heartbroken when they canceled the Van tour in April 2020 but I’m hoping when COVID-19 subsides that they will bring the tour back to Knoxville. The Foo Fighters song Hero, for me, is one of those songs that when you hear it you stop and your mind goes to another place. Plus it’s just a really good song.
- Another band that has achieved GOAT status with me is the Highwaymen. It’s the dream team of country music and I find the songs that they sing make me feel and I think that’s getting harder to find with a lot of today’s music. Silver Stallion is probably my favorite and it’s because it kind of describes wanting to just kind of drop everything and wander. Being cooped up with COVID-19 makes me want to really go out and travel haha. Plus I really enjoy storytelling in a song and they excel at that. It makes active listening more fun.
- I’ll wind this list down with Chance the Rapper. The guy is a lyrical genius, so much meaning is packed into his songs, but they’re also bops, so it’s kind of the best of both worlds. You get really catchy tunes and hooks, but some thought-provoking lyrics as well. He’s also someone who deals with nostalgia in a really inviting way. If you listen to “Do You Remember” and “Nostalgia” you’ll probably catch some things from your childhood too. I think that’s something interesting is that even though our lives and upbringings are completely different, he remembers and finds importance in some of the same things I did.
What are your top 5 favorite books?
- The Forgotten Jesus. I really appreciated this book from Robert Gallaty. It provides a lot of interesting and much-needed context to the Bible reading I do. Gallaty’s purpose is to look at the Bible from the perspective that it was written: a Jewish perspective. It also focuses on a few key misinterpretations from when the Bible was being translated. Looking at the Bible from this way brings another level of depth that you would never get from just picking it up and reading it.
- The Lord of the Rings Trilogy + The Hobbit. It’s hard to ignore such a great story with such detail. Really does transport you into the story.
- Built to Last. Considering I am studying for my Masters, I read a lot of business/leadership development books. There isn’t a better author in that realm than Jim Collins. He doesn’t just give you concepts and facts, he tells stories of success. It’s more than “this is how it works and here’s the data to prove it.” It’s a “story that shows how the concept brings success, data to prove it isn’t an isolated incident, and what you need to learn from that scenario,” kind of book.
- Percy Jackson and the Olympians Saga. I think that every kid should read the first five books in this series. Rick Riordan made reading so much fun with these books. The meshing of ancient history and mythology with today’s pop culture icons made it a blast to read.
- Harris and Me. First thing you will see when you Google this book (I’m almost certain you won’t know it off the top of your head so you will Google it) will be Gary Paulsen’s name and you’ll think, “Hey, that’s the guy that wrote Hatchet.” If you’re anything like me and you were the one person in school who didn’t like Hatchet, well, you’re in luck. This is something completely different. It’s about a city kid spending a summer on a rural farm. It’s funny, a little crude, but totally relatable to anyone who grew up outside of the suburbs. An absolute blast.
Top 5 Favorite Video Games of All Time?
- Skyrim. It was my first open-world action RPG game. It came out in 2011 and it still holds up today. There’s so much to do, I still haven’t finished it all.
- Right now I’m playing Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla and it is my first foray into the Assassin’s Creed franchise. I understand that as such, I am not qualified to comment on the whole Assassin’s Creed franchise, but I found it interesting that a game based on stealth chose Vikings to be the cultural backdrop. Typically, when you think about Viking combat you think of brutal berserking and raiding. While that is still a major aspect of the game, they have masterfully woven into the gameplay. The storytelling is top-shelf and there are so many different ways to approach everything.
- Another favorite is Call of Duty: Modern Warfare. The game looks fantastic, there’s a wide variety of missions to complete, a great story, and lots of fun parts to break up the traditional first-person shooter action. There are also quite a few moral quandaries in there too.
- Star Wars: Fallen Order was incredible. The game looked incredible, the gameplay makes sense, and you get better the more you play it. The progression is satisfying. The Star Wars nerd in me rejoiced after playing two pretty rough attempts at Star Wars: Battlefront from EA.
- The Uncharted series was incredible. Nathan Drake has an awesome character arc, the fighting and movement controls worked together well. The storylines were fantastic, giving each game a great individual story, but then bringing the installments together. The fourth installment finally added a fun driving portion.
Favorite Celebrity/Athlete/Musician/ or 5 Celebrities Who You Would Want to Have Dinner With
If I were having dinner with 5 celebrities, I would invite Mark Hoppus, TJ Watt, Robert Downey Jr., Peyton Manning, and Jack Black. Mark Hoppus and Jack Black are hilarious people, and they would be the comic relief, TJ Watt is my favorite football player in the NFL right now so he’s invited. Peyton Manning who may be my all-time favorite is there. Robert Downey Jr. is inspiring and just straight-up awesome so he has to be there.
Top 5 Social Accounts
My social media is primarily used for keeping up with family/friends, movies/games, and sports. But I have a few fun follows.
- The first would Tucker Budzyn. He’s a cute golden retriever who has an awesome personality.
- The second would be Looper and Watch Mojo. I lumped them in together because they are essentially the same thing. They always have top “x” movies, video games, TV show moments, trailer breakdowns, etc. They cover a wide variety of media and genres that they really have something for everyone.
- Honest Movie Trailers is good because oftentimes he says what everything is thinking but in a cool movie narrator voice.
- I also have to give a shout-out to Fable Beard Company because it’s a great follow, seriously, not because I write for them on the side, but because the content is so cool and fun. If you’re into fantasy fiction, Fable is a great follow.
- I also love Dry Bar Comedy. It’s funny. That’s it. Just really, really funny.