Top Pick: The Child Real Moves Plush | $70 | Disney Store
2020, what a year. However you were affected, I think we can all agree movies, TV shows, books, and other forms of at-home entertainment were our one saving grace. But for the pop culture obsessive who knows a little too much about Lord of the Rings, it can be difficult to hunt down that thing they wish they had that isn’t already sitting up on a shelf somewhere between their Gandalf Funko Pop and Ganondorf amiibo. If you need a little help, get ready to find something a little off the beaten path. From The Mandalorian paraphernalia to Black Widow Barbie dolls, this is the way to a few items just for that nerdy pal you have no idea what to buy.
See what I did up there? Oh, and *spoiler alert* The Child has a name: Grogu is our space babe and the cutest green boy in the galaxy. What would make a fan of this darling’s holiday? A more lifelike replica, of course. This brand-new Child Real Moves plush from the Disney Store is that. With the joystick, he can play hide and seek, pose for “Force Movement,” look curious, and make sweet little baby alien noises. He moves his head and arms, making you want to protect him as fiercely as Din Djarin does.
Winter is here and so is this gorgeous Blu-ray collection of the entire Game of Thrones series. Get ready to be entertained for two-thirds of this. If you throw out the last two seasons it’s perfection. In all seriousness, this set brings all 73 episodes together in beautiful 4K UHD for the first time. If you want to relive it all without the need for an internet connection, this is the real deal. In the Game of Thrones, you either win or you spend 15 hours on the sofa watching bonus features. You can still watch it all digitally but you’ll need a subscription.
Fangs by Sarah Andersen | $13
If you’re in need of an endearing supernatural love story, Fangs is for you. One of the sweetest comics I’ve come across, this book follows the relationship of Elsie, a vampire, and Jimmy, a werewolf. We follow them as they learn to live with each other’s eccentricities. It’s surprisingly relatable and unbelievably charming. I hope Sarah Andersen has more coming from these two because I fell in love with them, too.
Cobra Kai - Season 1 & 2 | $20
With an extended look at Season 3 from Netflix, it’s the perfect time to catch up with The Karate Kid’s infamous dojo. 30 years well after the source material we reconnect with Johnny Lawrence and Daniel LaRusso both doing about as well as you’d expect each. I can’t wait to see these old rivals team up for a good fight in 2021. But until then let’s revisit how we got here. “Cobra Kai, Cobra Kai, Cobra Kai....”
Just because the Winchester Brothers are no longer on the airwaves doesn’t mean we can’t still honor them. After 15 seasons our monster-hunting kin hung it up a few weeks ago but you can still feel as connected as you did back in 2005. Insight Editions has put together amazing fandom cookbooks covering all genres. I’ve been lucky enough to snag a few over the years and this one doesn’t disappoint. Try your hand at Castiel’s Angel Food Cake or Waldo’s Waffles, because, “What psycho doesn’t love waffles?” This truly is the gift that keeps on giving.
My Life as a Weapon might be my favorite series in recent memory. What Fraction and Aja do with the archer Avenger is magical. Clint is portrayed as charismatic while still going through some pretty heavy stuff. This is my Hawkeye, and if you’ve ever thought he was lame, I assure you this will change your mind. He’s just a guy trying his best in some pretty extraordinary circumstances. And it looks like the Disney+ show is lifting a lot from this run including the introduction of Kate Bishop and Pizza Dog. One of the most brilliant pieces ever is in this series where an entire issue is told from Pizza Dog’s perspective. Pure genius.
They say the perfect show doesn’t exist but that’s not true because Mad Men ran for seven seasons. Ok, just kidding. Schitt’s Creek was such a surprise hit and it has really branched across so many different groups of my friends. The writing is clever, the acting is spectacular, and the story is so enticing. Each episode moves fast and is cooky with whip-smart dialogue and a whole lot of heart. If you’re craving a Keeping Up With The Kardashians type of show but want to feel something and with depth, this is the show.
Now that all the seasons are finally out you could burn through them all again or for the first time over a few days. Once you start you won’t want to leave the Rose family. Catherine O’Hara is a North American treasure and people will be studying her as Moira Rose for years to come. It is available digitally with commercials for Amazon Prime members.
Not sure where to start with Wonder Woman? Brian Azzarello and Cliff Chiang’s series is hands down my favorite of all of Diana’s adventures. If you’ve seen the first film this book follows parts of that story pretty closely, particularly Diana coming to terms with the fact that she’s a daughter of Zeus. The art is breathtaking and this epic graphic novel intertwines mythology, history, and all the heroics of an Amazon warrior princess. You will not want to put this down, thank the gods because there are thirty-five issues total. This is a good treat before Wonder Woman ‘84.
Black Widow Barbie | $50
I’m honestly including this because she’s just so dang pretty. This is without a doubt one of the most spot-on and exquisite dolls Barbie has ever put out. Full disclosure, as a Black Widow aficionado, I’ve been bummed all year about waiting for the movie. But there’s been a lot of very stunning merch to come out in the meantime. I just can’t get over this doll though. Natasha is strong, stoic, and ready to take on Taskmaster. She’s fully poseable and will proudly protect whichever shelf she’s displayed on.
Coyote Doggirl | $23
Are you feeling lost without Bojack? Me too. Lisa Hanawaltis the creator of both Bojack Horseman and Tuca & Bertie. Her art and stories warm my cold heart and her aesthetic is so inviting for some pretty heavy subject matter. Coyote Doggirl is a self-aware tale that’s pretty subversion as you would expect. A fallible hero trying to connect and grow with humor and heartbreak really is Hanawaltis’ wheelhouse. And her vibrant colors blend beautifully with this Western backdrop. This is another deeply personal piece narrative from the creator and is a great gift for those in transition trying to reconnect with or even find themselves. And hey, we are getting another season of Tuca & Bertie next year so until then let Coyote Doggirl keep you company.