The Year In Swag 2012: In which we try to re-gift a year’s worth of promo crap

Every year, the marketplace of ideas (and products) gets more crowded with music, books, films, and TV. Every year, companies send us free stuff in a frantic bid to bribe us into paying attention to their specific ideas and products for just a few measly seconds. And every year, we boast here about all the fantastic…

Podmass’ best podcasts of 2011 

When we wrote about our favorite podcasts for the first time last year, we kept it casual: A core of A.V. Club podcast fans collaborated on a list of some of the best ones in rotation on our iPods. With the debut of our Podmass feature in February, though, we now had a large group of contributors listening to upwards…

The best books we read in 2011 

Every year, The A.V. Club embarks upon elaborate voting rituals to determine the sorta-consensus best films, albums, and television of the year. But finding the best books of the year is a different experience. Since we cultivate the most eclectic selection of tastes we can for the book-review section in order to…

The least essential albums of 2011

Each year, The A.V. Club scours the depths of our music slush pile in the quest for the least essential albums of the year. Though we wouldn’t call any of this music “good,” our goal isn’t to find the worst the year had to offer, but rather the music that had the absolute least real justification for existing, from…

The Year In Swag 2011: The wallowing in luxury edition 

As the means of producing music, books, and even films become cheaper and more accessible every year, the marketplace is increasingly crowded with culture, and the big companies are fighting to stay at the top of the heap. Fortunately for us, they often do this by taking advantage of their deep pockets and trying to…

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The TV Club Awards 2011

For the second year in a row, The A.V. Club looked at its year-end TV coverage and said, “Wait, there’s a lot of weird stuff that happened between the margins that can’t be summed up in simple ‘best of’ and ‘worst of’ lists.” In celebration of everything that falls between the sublime and the ridiculous—you know, like…