Best of 2013: Guests and Friends

newmoon - Best of 2013:  Guests and Friends

by Ryan Meehan

One of the best parts about writing for First Order Historians is that I get the chance to talk to some really cool people in the entertainment industry. Likewise, another great part is it gives me a chance to reach out to people I know that read the site and ask them what they are thinking as well.  Because this was my first year doing this, I also made some mistakes.  One of them is that this piece is also quite long, and that’s why I’m thanking you for reading it ahead of time.  So these are what our guests and friends thought was awesome this year, and of course I figured I’d throw my two cents in as well because you know how much I hate carrying pennies around.


Comedian Joe Machi

New York City, NY

Late Night With Jimmy Fallon / Nervous Correspondent – “Red Eye with Greg Gutfeld”

Album of the year: If we’re talking music.. I don’t really buy them anymore. I buy individual songs. I really like Imagine Dragons, Ellie Goulding and the Shout Out Louds’ recent stuff. If we’re talking comedy albums, I liked John Mulaney’s recent one “New in Town.”

Food/Drink discovery: I rekindled my love affair with chicken pot pie. (Don’t tell Stromboli.)

TV show of the year: “Red Eye with Greg Gutfeld” on Fox News Channel.

Most significant current event: This is a tough one. Could go with the healthcare debacle, Syria, The Great work by Pope Francis, Typhoon Haiyan…But I’m going to pick Edward Snowden. We’re in a space between oppressive governments. Now our government has given itself more tools, unchecked than any government ever. The keys to everything about us are held by unaccountable secret police and secret courts.

Best Film: Enders Game. I only say that so people read the book. It was sold as a parable about bullying. It isn’t. It’s about how societies try to punish original thinking that goes against the status quo. College professors should read this.

Guilty Pleasure of 2013: The song ‘Clarity’ by Zed featuring Foxes.



Musician Jeff Parker

Los Angeles, CA/Chicago, IL

Tortoise / Isotope 217

Album of the Year: The only recent release I really enjoyed throughout last year was “Mature Themes” by Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti – but my research has shown that it was released in late 2012. Does that count? The best overall LP I purchased this year was a reissue of “Uhuru, Harlem Bush Music” by Gary Bartz’s NTU Troop (Milestone Records, 1971).

Food/Drink discovery of 2013: Fat Rice (restaurant in Chicago), Avalanche Beer

TV Show of the Year: “Mad Men”. I’m interested to see where they are going to take Don Draper in its final season.

Most significant current event: George Zimmerman’s acquittal for the murder of Trayvon Martin

Best Film: Joe Swanberg’s “Drinking Buddies”

Biggest Guilty pleasure of 2013: Kendrick Lamar’s “good kid, M.A.D.D. City”. He’s talented, but I still hate corporate rap music.


Comedian Kevin Allison

New York City, NY

Host of the “RISK!” Show Podcast / MTV’s “The State”

Album of the Year: The one I came back to repeatedly with the most fascination was Bob Dylan – The Bootleg Series Vol. 10 – Another Self Portrait (1969-1971). Even when he’s just futzing around, he speaks to me on some weirdly spiritual level. I pretty much never listen to entire albums, just singles. I love the way the indie/alt scene produces such amazing variety these days, and the podcast All Songs Considered is my favorite testament to that. Yeezus was interesting, but overrated, like everything he does. “Random Access Memories” (Daft Punk) was fun.

Food/Drink discovery of 2013: Well, this is just my own personal discovery of late, but I think the Spanish sausage chorizo is better in a marinara sauce than Italian sausage is. So… go do that!

TV Show of the Year: Without a doubt, Breaking Bad. A masterpiece in the history of American storytelling. I love stories about people who ditch the status quo, even if they make a mess in the process. And damn, what a mess Walt made!

Most significant current event: I think the fact that the Catholic Church now has a leader who seems to be behind what Jesus actually taught is one of the most radical developments of my lifetime. I never saw it coming.

Best Film: I made it to the movies only once this year and to see a Chinese film. I have to admit, it’s the half-hour of commercials you have to sit through that has seriously damaged the whole big screen experience for me now.

Biggest Guilty pleasure of 2013: Binge-viewing on Netflix. It’s like a shot of dopamine when the image on the screen shrinks to reveal that another episode will begin in 30 or so seconds.


Writer/Podcaster Bob Zerull

Moline, IL

Zoiks! Online / “I Hate Critics” Podcast

Album of the Year: The Winery Dogs – “The Winery Dogs” For two years in a row a band featuring Mike Portnoy tops my best of the year album list. Last year it was Flying Colors, this year it’s The Winery Dogs. In pure musical ability alone this band tops the list, but mix in an album full of great songs and you’ve got an unstoppable force. If you don’t like this album, then go see them live…I promise your opinion will change. The Winery Dogs is Mike Portnoy (Drums), Billy Sheehan (Bass) and Richie Kotzen (Guitar, Vocals)

Food/Drink discovery of 2013: Absinthe. I’m really struggling as my wife is a very picky eater which usually limits me when it comes to trying new things. I did get to try Absinthe in 2013. I didn’t hallucinate and it tasted fine…but I did try it.

TV Show of the Year: “Comic Book Men”/”Impractical Jokers” I don’t watch a lot of TV. I like a handful of shows, but I’ll DVR them and wait weeks to watch them. I’m really into podcasting and my favorite show is Tell ‘em Steve Dave which features Walt Flanagan and
Bryan Johnson of “Comic Book Men” and Brian Q Quinn of “Impractical Jokers.” In a way these are reality shows, but so what, I really like watching these guys, so I never miss an episode.

Most significant current event: PRISM/NSA Spying Scandal. I guess I don’t know how significant this is being that we all have our lives out there in public, so what’s the big deal? I don’t have an answer to that question. “1984” told us to fear Big Brother watching us. In 2013 we’re giving Big Brother way more that Big Brother probably even wants. In the back of our minds there is still that fear of Big Brother which is what makes this scandal pretty significant. Plus I’m not smart enough to talk about Syria, and how do you decide
which natural disaster was the most significant?

Best Film: “The Dirties” This was hard for me. “Gravity” was one of the few must see in 3D
movies ever made and I really want to see “American Hustle” and “The Wolf of Wall Street.” I’m going with “The Dirties” though. It’s a film written, directed and starring Matthew Johnson. It’s a low budget indie film that follows a potential school shooting. What makes this movie different from other school shooting movies and media coverage for that matter is that they don’t consider the shooter a monster. It’s a movie that will open up your eyes and hopefully if enough people see it, will get people talking.

Biggest Guilty pleasure of 2013: ABC’s “Nashville”. Normally I reserve my guilty pleasure’s for music, but for whatever reason I enjoy the show “Nashville.” I’m not sure if it’s because I
love music or if it’s my crush on the 45 year old Connie Britton. I don’t have a good excuse, but it could be worse, I could be watching “The Vampire Diaries” or “The Originals.”


Comedian Joe DeVito

New York, New York

Fox News Channel / Chelsea Lately

Album of the Year: Carcass – “Surgical Steel”

Food Discovery: Anything gluten-free that doesn’t taste like packing material.

TV Show of the Year:  The one where the British guy yells at businesses for doing it wrong.

Most Significant Current Event: The ease and efficiency of the Obamacare website.

Best Film: That video of cats stealing dog beds.

Biggest Guilty Pleasure: They are ALL guilty pleasures


Comedian Adam Degi

Grand Rapids, MI

Gilda’s Laughfest / First Order Historians

Album of the year:  Kid Cudi’s ‘Indicud’ I know, I know  top 40 rap? Kid Cudi is by far the most original hip hop artist right now and it’s great driving music. For me it is anyway. Underrated album. I still want to be black even after that stage most white kids went through growing up in the 90’s.

My food/drink discovery of the Year:  Not a food or drink, but just discovering how much I love anything with cheese or gluten. I’ve been dating a girl for almost a year now who’s lactose intolerant and she has to take pills in order to eat cheese. The hell with that noise. 80% of my diet is cheese. It’s my entire food pyramid. Jesus, I’m fat. I also have several friends who can’t eat gluten. Some of them don’t because it makes them shit their brains out and some do it by choice. I can’t not drink beer and eat bread. No thank you.

TV show of the year:  Breaking Bad, of course it is, what the hell else would it be?  Duck Dynasty? I’ve never followed a show ever let alone been obsessed with it. That all changed with Breaking Bad and the power of Netflix I watched all 5 seasons in probably 2 months then had to wait for the final 8 on TV.

Most Significant Event:  Boston Marathon Bombings. I was travelling on the East Coast and the shit was nuts listening to updates by the minute on the radio before they caught the guy. Also proved even after 9/11 with all the extra security and precaution we’re still not invincible, and there are still terrorists living in America. Things like that remind you how insignificant people like comics are. Best film for me was “Prisoners” starring Wolverine and Jake Jillinfuck lots of twists and the end leaves you hanging.

Guilty Pleasure of 2013:  Being a Detroit Lions fan. Yes, I’m die hard and they were terrible….again. I’ve been watching for over 2 decades and nothing has changed. This year however they couldn’t have asked for a better script. Started 6 and 3 and the two best quarterbacks in their division missed at least 5 games. That and they had the easiest schedule in the league the last 8 games based on winning percentage. They still found a way to fuck it up losing 6 of 7 down the stretch. God, I hate that I care and it ruins weeks for me. Thank God their season is over. Until next time.


Comedian Dave Merheje

Toronto, Ontario

Just For Laughs Montreal / “We Ain’t Terrorists” / “Make ‘Em Cry”

Album of the Year: Drake-“Nothing was the same”

Food/Drink discovery of 2013: Kale chips

TV Show of the Year:  Homeland

Most significant current event:  34th Annual Seattle International Comedy Competition

Best Film: The Great Gatsby

Biggest Guilty pleasure of 2013: Wearing my girlfriend’s jeans and the skinny girl margarita


Jedediah Bila

Manhattan, NY

The Five” / “Your World with Neil Cavuto” / “Red Eye With Greg Gutfeld”

Album of the Year: My favorite is Tom Odell’s Long Way Down. Good for laughing, crying, and all that relationship stuff we say we hate, but love.

Food/Drink discovery of 2013: I found a white wine sangria to die for. The recipe is here: (and I think I got the original referral at Buzzfeed). As far as food, my best friend invented an apple-pie crisp miracle that had me at hello. Every night. For a really, really, really long time.

TV Show of the Year: Duh, Red Eye w/ Greg Gutfeld (Can I have my raise now, Greg?)

Most significant current event: The Boston Marathon bombings

Best Film: I really didn’t love anything I saw this year. (Sorry, folks, but Gravity wasn’t THAT good.) So I’ll use this opportunity to embarrass myself by saying that I watched The Notebook and Under the Tuscan Sun more times than anyone should, ever.

Biggest Guilty pleasure of 2013: This was the year that I diagnosed myself with a chocolate addiction, so chocolate, I guess. Although I’m pretty sure I should be guilty about watching Dance Moms, too.


Comedian Carmen Lynch 

New York, NY

Conan / Late Show with David Letterman

Song of the year:  Robin Thicke – “Blurred Lines”

Food/Drink discovery:  Mustard chicken. So good.

TV show of the year: of course…Breaking Bad.

Most significant current event: Honoring Nelson Mandela.

Best Film: of the year: The Conjuring. Can’t watch scary movies alone so I watched it on a plane.

Guilty Pleasure of 2013: Dipping a spoonful of peanut butter into a bag of m&m’s and hoping a ton will stick.


Eric Brown 

Moline, IL 

Law Enforcement Official / First Order Historians Contributor

Album of the Year:  Black Sabbath-13

Food/Drink discovery of 2013: The Barrel House 211 menu

TV Show of the Year: Tie in no order:  The Walking Dead/Breaking Bad/Sons Of Anarchy

Most significant current event:  The Obamacare fiasco

Best Film: Argo

Biggest Guilty pleasure of 2013:  Not working out for 3 weeks and eating like it was my last meal


Writer Neil Roberts

Pullman, WA

KUGR Radio – Washington State University / Sports Blog Movement

Album of the Year:  “Clock Work Angels” by Rush (Technically 2012)

TV Show of the Year: “NCIS”

Most Significant Current Event: Syrian Civil War

Best Film: “Star Trek:  Into Darkness”

Biggest Guilty Pleasure:  Talk radio


Guitarist Travis Tidwell

Lyles, TN

Big S’mo

Album of the Year:  Zac Brown “Uncaged”.  They are phenomenal musicians – their harmonies are great  – they are great musicians.

Food/Drink discovery of 2013: On the road, we will go to IHOP sometimes after shows, and I discovered chicken florentine crepes with Hollandaise sauce on it. DELICIOUS!!

TV Show of the Year: Well, Smo and the guys freak over “The Walking Dead”, I like “The Middle” and “Modern Family”. But I would have to say that probably my favorite TV show is “Workaholics”, along with “Eastbound and Down”.

Most significant current event:  The death of Nelson Mandela. He was somewhat of a personal hero to me and I believe the world lost a great leader.

Best Film: Another hard one! “The Conjuring” was great, and any Marvel movie for me, I’m a superhero nerd actually! “Bad Grandpa” is hilarious as well!

Biggest Guilty pleasure of 2013:  Smo has turned me onto the Keurig coffee machine. I love it!! I also feel as though I can’t live without Dunkin’ Donuts Hazelnut coffee, thanks to a special certain someone in my life!


Broadcaster Andrew Round

Rock Island, IL

IvyEnvy Podcast

Album of the Year: Foals–Holy Fire–I first listened to this album twice through on a long road trip, and it was a great way to get me through the monotony of central Illinois.  Some of the songs are very hook-oriented (“My Number”) and some have cool attention to detail (“Bad Habit”).  These guys have the capability of being ostentatious with their skill, but they show some good restraint at times here where maybe they wouldn’t have in the past.  Some people would pass this by for album of the year because the second half of the album sags a little, and I can see appreciate that perspective.

Food/Drink discovery of 2013: Deschutes Brewery’s lineup of beers–I tried Mirror Pond Pale Ale at a local establishment, and wouldn’t you know it, their beer showed up at the local grocery store shortly thereafter.  Get some.

TV Show of the Year: At Midnight–This show ended a test run a few weeks ago, and it was successful enough to warrant being picked up for 40 weeks, starting in January of 2014.  Chris Hardwick is the host, but there are three different comedian/actor guests on every night, commenting on news stories/internet oddities in a game-show-style format.  It’s kind of like The Soup/Tosh.0 with fresh voices every episode.  Here are some of the guests so far: Patton Oswalt, Kumail Nanjiani, Doug Benson, Tom Lennon, Kristen Schaal, Moshe Kasher, and on and on.

Most significant current event: Amazon testing delivery by drones–We’re going to die.

Best Film: The World’s End–This movie feels like two stitched together due to a surprising turn of events in the middle.  I didn’t know anything about it going in (other than the fact that it was a Frost, Pegg, Wright movie), and that ignorance made it extra great.

Biggest Guilty pleasure of 2013: watching commentaries of Starcraft II matches on YouTube–Yeah, commentary of video games is happening.


Comedian Andrew Schulz

New York, NY

Guy Court (MTV) / Red Eye With Greg Gutfeld

Album of the Year: Sara Phillips. Sara Phillips EP

Food/Drink discovery of 2013: Kale. it’s like lettuce if lettuce grew up with an alcoholic father.

TV Show of the Year: MTV2’s Guy Court. Funniest show on TV. Also Homeland – nothing has made me want to be a balding out of shape 50 year old more than Homeland.

Most significant current event: Don’t we get healthcare or some shit now?

Best Film: American Hustle

Biggest Guilty pleasure of 2013: Casting Couch Porn. Also my guilty pleasure in 2012, 2011, 2010 and so on…


Percussionist Paul Blomquist

Rock Island, IL

Chrash / ‘Dem Some Bitches

Album of the Year:  Queens of the Stone Age “Like Clockwork”

Drink discovery:  Breckenridge “Vanilla Porter”

Food discovery:  Chorizo- tacos, burritos, with eggs…etc.

TV Show of the Year:  The 1st thing that comes to mind is “Breaking Bad” but because I know its what everyone will say I feel the need to acknowledge something different….so I’m going with- “The Killing”.

Most significant current event:  The 1st thing that comes to mind is Obamacare – or should I say…”The non-affordable health care act”.  I feel like I should pick something different but that one is a recent deep burn.

Guilty pleasure of 2013:  I watched the entire last season of Dexter…I enjoyed it and honesty at the table it was fucking terrible!  For a series about a serial killer they could of taken some more chances on the 8th and last season.


Heavy Metal Vocalist Cam Pipes

Vancouver, British Columbia

3 Inches of Blood

Album of the Year:  Blood Ceremony “The Eldritch Dark”

Food/Drink discovery of 2013:  Experienced biggest variety of Pumpkin beers I’ve every seen and drank

TV Show of the Year:  “Breaking Bad” and “American Horror Story: Coven”

Most significant current event:  Toronto Mayor Rob Ford smokes crack on video

Best Film:  “Blackfish”

Biggest Guilty pleasure of 2013:  Singing Christmas carols out loud


Comedian Emily Allyn

Grand Rapids, MI

Ha Ha Hastings

Best Album: John Fogerty “Wrote A Song For Everyone” — so great to hear from the legend. His influence exists everywhere, so it’s always awesome to get stuff right from the source!

Food/Drink Discovery: Salty/sweet combos rule the era, and one of the rarest & most delightful is the nearly-impossible-to-find Pecan Pie flavored Pringles. If you can snag a can, go ahead and snag a few because these don’t disappoint with their sweet & nutty flavor.

TV Show of the Year: For me, this would be “The Neighbors.” I realize “Breaking Bad” should probably be everyone’s choice because of its incredible influence on the culture, but that show stressed me out too much. “The Neighbors” with its fun & absurdity was my favorite.

Most Significant Current Event: Right now, I’m watching the new Pope with intense interest. He is a revolutionary and his bold statements for change worldwide are a truly positive light among the gathering stormclouds of our society. My main fear is that his challenging the status quo will make him a target of crackpots, but I feel like he’s got what it takes to persevere.

Best Film: Tough, because I didn’t watch many, but I have to say “Silver Linings Playbook” because it deals about as honestly with mental illness as a film has in my experience. Everyone can identify with at least one character in this film, which captures the loneliness of our modern world while still being an entertaining picture.

Guilty Pleasure of 2013: Getting hotel rooms when traveling to shows. When I first started traveling more than an hour for a show, I never felt like I could justify the expense when I wasn’t getting paid for the gig. I still only get paid for a small number of the out-of-town performances I do, but now I just go ahead and get a room when I feel like it. It makes me feel like a baller even though it’s just the Red Roof Inn.


Comedian Beth Stelling

Los Angeles, CA


Album of the Year: “The Heist” (Macklemore & Ryan Lewis) technically I think this was made in 2012…but it’s certainly the album/soundtrack of 2013.

Food/Drink discovery of 2013:
What DID I discover? I guess it was dates. They are nature’s candy.

TV Show of the Year:
Always and forever – it’s “Parks & Recreation”.

Most significant current event:
The U.S. government shutdown

Best Film:
“The Hunger Games – Catching Fire”

Biggest Guilty pleasure of 2013: Chocolate mochi ice cream balls


Photographer Joshua Ford

Rock Island, IL

Josh Ford Photography

Album of the Year: Tie between Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds “Push the Sky Away” & Ensemble Pearl “Ensemble Pearl”

Food/Drink discovery of 2013: Ballast Point “Sculpin” IPA, and Chorizo & Fried Egg Sandwich at Redband Coffee Company (Dav)

TV Show of the Year: “Breaking Bad”

Most significant current event: Health Care Reform

Best Film: Only God Forgives (Dir. Nicholas Winding Refn)

Biggest Guilty pleasure of 2013: Spotify for iPhone (love it, but I know artists get paid jack-shit from it)


Writer Jonathan Werner

West Lafayette, IN

Sports Blog Movement

Album of the Year: I’m an old guy who thinks Nirvana is “new music.” Let’s face it, I could be the guy from that “Pepperidge Farm Remembers” meme. So, unless you want me to tell you all how the highlight of my music buying year was replacing a lost copy of Boston’s “Don’t Look Back,” I’m probably not the guy for this question.

Food Discovery: I love Asian food, so finding a place in Flat Land, Indiana that makes “non-shitting my brains out” sushi was a revelation.

TV Show of the Year: Again, as a crabby old guy who loves sports, I’m hooked on the Dan Patrick Show.

Most Significant Current Event: Another sports thing – The Boston Marathon bombing was a huge event, because it changed the way we will do event security from now on. Just wait until you hear about it at the Super Bowl.

Best Film: See what I said about music? Well, I’m a big fan of this new young director I’ve discovered named Stanley Kubrick.

Biggest Guilty Pleasure: Again, I’m an old guy, so I get a big thrill out of pooping with no chemical or hydraulic assistance. There’s nothing worse than having to cheat by using the bad sushi.


Comedian Mo Mandel

Hollywood, CA

Chelsea Lately / Modern Family / Conan

Album of the Year: “The M Word” by Mo Mandel. It came out in 2011 but it’s still relevant today. And for sale on ITunes.

Food/Drink discovery of 2013: Brussel sprouts. I’ve held a lot of resentment towards them for how they treated me as a child, but they are actually quite delicious.

TV Show of the Year: Game of Thrones. Stabbing people on their wedding day is where it’s at.

Most significant current event: Whatever Charlie Sheen is doing.

Best Film: Star Trek: Into Darkness. Just Fing sweet story.

Biggest Guilty pleasure of 2013: Cuddling with my poodle.


Comedian James Draper

Rock Island, IL

The Blacklist

The best album of 2013: Beyoncé – Beyoncé. I’m not saying this was the best collection of music, nor does this mean I believe Beyoncé is so “hot” (as in “the thing at the moment”) that she has to be included in an end of the year list. This is the best album because literally, no one saw it coming. Late one night she said, “hey guys, got a new album out” and BOOM, they flew off the shelves. There was zero publicity up to that point, no commercials leading up to it, no posters in stores saying “this will come out next week”. It just basically showed up on the shelves, and just as quickly disappeared. This is some Elvis bullshit! Seriously, how the hell does one do that? 30 Million copies in a day? Even George Lucas was like, “Chill bitch!”.

TV show of 2013: The Walking Dead. This is flat out THE show of the year. I didn’t start watching this show until a couple months ago. I hated all the hype I was seeing on social media, and hearing from my friends. “Another stupid fad”, I’d think (not into this whole zombie culture). So finally I watched it, all. I’m not even that big of a fan. So many episodes played out more like a damn soap opera than a suspenseful horror. But at the end of every flipping episode, you’re like, “WHAT?! YOU’RE GONNA END ON THAT?!”, and you’d have to watch the next one. This show is on cable and has the first three full seasons on Netflix. It had a huge following going into this year, and now with more people getting into it because they can “catch up”, as I have, its fan base continues to grow. Millions post their spoilers on Facebook and Twitter every Sunday (They should just make a group for that so those who haven’t watched it aren’t screwed as soon as they log onto their page). There are memes created, based on an episode, which show up on your feed before the episode even ends! If there’s another show out there with more buzz, fandom, or intrigue, it can take the place of this one as The TV show of 2013.

Most significant current event of 2013: Grumpy Cat. This is absolutely, the most significant current event of 2013, as it shows just how mindless human beings are. I remember at the beginning of the year thinking, “I hope the next time I see that cat, it’s accompanied by a Sarah Mclachlan song.” It just got worse, and worse. We kept seeing him more and more. Everyone creating and posting memes, even t-shirts, and coffee mugs…now there’s talk of a damn movie? This is the turning point people! Watch the movie “Idiocracy”, I’m sure it all started with this stupid cat. That’s pretty damn significant!

Biggest guilty pleasure of 2013: Candy Crush. I’ve never played it. But everyone who does, hates that they play it. If you haven’t been on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, or Google+ (I’m just kidding, no one’s on Google+) to see them ashamedly post about it, you’ve at least been next to someone who begrudgingly admitted it was the reason they were cursing at their phone. Do you play it? Have you played it? Kind of hard to admit isn’t it?

Food/Drink discovery of 2013: Pretzel bun. This isn’t a new thing, however, there were millions across the country that found out about this because fast food restaurants latched on to this fad. It’s a significant discovery for 2013, because it will pretty much stay in 2013. The hype came and went in about a month’s time. Wendy’s had their pretzel bun commercial out for a month, and quickly replaced the fad with a different bun. Like grandma used to say, “If I cared about buns, I would have asked for less meat.”

Best film of 2013: Iron Man 3. This was the highest grossing movie of the year, and one of the two or three movies I actually saw in theaters. I liked it. So that’s really all I have to go on. No matter what I choose, it will be wrong for 85% of you. At least I’m not a critic picking some boring artsy piece that you fall asleep to on your couch when you rent it because this “pro” said it’s “brilliant”. …more like brilliant snoozefest…am I right, “After Earth”?


Comedian Nick Vatterott

New York, NY

The Half Hour (Comedy Central) / Late Night With Jimmy Fallon (NBC)

Album of the Year: Whatever that one is that my neighbor’s been playing all year.

Food/Drink discovery of 2013: Greeber’s sells 2 for 1 fauxibos!

TV Show of the Year: Breaking Bad. I think that was the only show that was on.

Most significant current event: The internet’s continued influence on the demise of humanity

Best Film: The Butler. I assume. Haven’t seen it, just assume.

Biggest Guilty pleasure of 2013: Long Walks in the Shower


Comedian/writer/actress Allison Carter Thomas

New York, NY

Girlcode (MTV) / Greg The Bunny (IFC)

Album of the Year: Hands down Queen B. She just fucked everyone’s lives up with that album drop. Secrets change lives, man.

Food/Drink discovery of 2013: Um. I discovered I really like mangoes. I’d oddly avoided them before. So, that was fun because they’re pretty great.

TV Show of the Year: Game of Thrones

Most significant current event: Goodness there are a lot of those, but I’ll go with the passing of Nelson Mandela. He was the first person I ever wrote a paper on in grade school. He was an inspiration to me then, just as he still is now.

Best Film: The Hunger Games: Catching Fire! Ok, I honestly haven’t had time to see it yet, but I’m reallllly excited about it.

Biggest Guilty pleasure of 2013: I started taking selfies and felt terrible about it. Still doing it.


Comedian Myq Kaplan

New York City, NY

Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central Presents

Album of the Year: Eminem’s the Marshall Mathers LP 2

Food/Drink discovery of 2013: Sluggos North, a vegan restaurant in Chattanooga

TV Show of the Year: Justified

Most significant current event: I can’t pick just one. They’re all so significant.

Best Film: “Side Effects”

Biggest Guilty pleasure of 2013: “White House Down”. It’s also a movie. A real pleasure. And I don’t really feel guilty about it. But I understand why other people would.


Writer Ryan Meehan

South Moline, Illinois

First Order Historians/Sports Blog Movement

Album of the Year: Deafheaven – “Sunbather” Didn’t really end up being impressed by a lot of music this year and got into it late, but I just think the idea of a black metal band that sounds like Sonic Youth is the greatest thing ever.

Food/Drink discovery of 2013: Ice cold canned apple filling. Because it’s for people who aren’t good at anything else.  Also, the video for “King of Days” by High on Fire is right here…

TV Show of the Year: “Pawn Stars” The acting is atrocious but it’s a really cool show and I learn a lot about weird stuff even though I know when I watch it I am not a better person. Honorable mention: “American Pickers”, “Red Eye With Greg Gutfeld”.  “Red Eye” just might be the best form of entertainment available to anybody because they ended up losing one of their key writers and the show is still a ten.

Most significant current event: It seems weird to me that we are so hung up with our own problems that something like the typhoon in the Philippines goes almost unnoticed on American television. It’s the most significant because there are some things in this world that we can actually do something about, but when it comes to something like this we have absolutely no way to stop it.

Best Film: “Nebraska” but only because no one else has said it yet. One of the reasons that’s true is because we usually don’t interview hipsters.

Biggest Guilty pleasure of 2013: Late night Youtube access to unlimited Roxette videos.


Comedian Megan Gailey

Lakeview/Chicago, IL

Album of the Year: Justin Timberlake “20/20 Experience”

Food/Drink discovery of 2013: Brussel sprouts comeback of the century/Moscow Mule

TV Show of the Year: Game of Thrones

Most significant current event: US Government shutdown

Best Film: “Frances Ha”

Biggest Guilty pleasure of 2013: Tater Tot Mania! (not an actual thing but experienced by many)


China Joe Zibrat

Debt Collection Specialist

Chicago, IL

Album of the Year: It’s a toss up between Kadavar “abra kadabra” and Uncle Acid and the Deabeats’ “Mind Control”

TV show of the year:  “Sons of Anarchy”   Had I watched all of “Breaking Bad”, then that would have probably been the answer

Most significant current event: The US government shutdown

Guilty pleasure of 2013:  Catching quite a few blues musicians.


Comedian Eric Schwartz

Studio City, California

New Special “Surrender to the Blender”
available for download now

Album of the Year: Tie: Macklemore – “The Heist” and “Eminem – Marshall Mathers LP 2.” I realize picking two white rappers makes me live up to my “Suburban Homeboy” moniker, but they’re both really are great. Perhaps a bigger accomplishment is Macklemore finally ousting Vanilla Ice as the third most-popular white rapper of all time, behind Eminem and the Beastie Boys.

Food/Drink discovery of 2013: Fuyu persimmons. Before Fuyus, I had only had a few persimmons. They usually turned my mouth instantly dry, like the dentist left the air sucker in my mouth and left the room. I think it was because of the the unripeness of the variety I was eating. I discovered Fuyus from Ace Ranch in Escondido, CA at my local farmer’s market. They’re delicious even unripe, plus it’s so much fun to say Fuyu! Total mouth enjoyment.

TV Show of the Year: Breaking Bad. If anyone says anything different, they’re wrong. Breaking Bad raised the bar so high, it has influenced television from now on. Plus, I say “no” to drugs more than ever.

Most significant current event: Obamacare Website. It ultimately brought people together. Not everyone liked Obamacare, but everyone hates a broken website!

Best Film: Eric Schwartz aka Smooth-E – Surrender to the Blender. “Oz the Great and Powerful” gets a distant 237th.

Biggest Guilty pleasure of 2013:

Twerking. We all did it. We all liked it, even if we said we didn’t. It’s anatomical. Booties are attractive, and even moreso when they’re bouncing up and down. Twerking is just the reverse pelvic thrust, and that’s never going out of style.


Comedian Selena Coppock

Windsor Terrace/Brooklyn, NYC

Album of the Year: Jason Aldean’s “Night Train”. I know, I’m a total loser, but Jason Aldean cranks out redneck classics like a GM plant after the bailout.

Food/Drink discovery of 2013: Lightly breaded, fried brussels sprouts. Who knew that all you need to make brussels sprouts palatable are some cheese, butter, breading, and deep frying!? I’m addicted.

TV Show of the Year: Mad Men. I adore Mad Men and season 6 was fantastic. Things got messier, but Don Draper seems to be finally making peace with his childhood and himself.

Most significant current event: The publication of my book (The New Rules for Blondes) on April 23, 2013! I’m a complete narcissist, I know, but I worked on that thing for about two and a half years, so the publication was a big deal for me!

Best Film: The Way Way Back. Such a charming, cute, fantastic film. Seeing Steve Carrell play a schmuck was unexpected and satisfying.

Biggest Guilty pleasure of 2013: The Bachelorette. I have an addiction to hate watching all things Bachelor franchise related, and this past season of The Bachelorette (starring Desiree aka Poor Man’s Katie Holmes) was as delightfully horrible as expected. And yes, of COURSE she found love at the end of it all.

Once again thanks for visiting First Order Historians and enjoying more of the internet’s finest in user generated content. We look forward to seeing more of you in 2014, as we have plenty of great stuff on its way!!!

Happy New Year,



Leave a Comment