I always love it when a comic falls on New Year’s Eve. I dunno – it just feels like a great way to cap the year. I was feeling so celebratory, in fact, I decided to give you TWO extra panels in today strip.

Okay, so they’re pretty much for pacing a visual gag, but extra comics is extra comics!

I had kind of a hard time putting together today’s strip. Not just because the holidays have put me woefully out of sync with my regular routines. But when it came for Cami to share her pick for the best (worst?) movie of 2007, I was racking my brain trying to think of a film that was universally hated.

I combed a few “Worst of…” lists, which is almost ridiculous in it’s futility. I mean, I understand highlighting the best films makes for interesting copy and might motivate people to check out films they probably wouldn’t otherwise see. But ranking the worst? If they’re bad, can’t we just agree that they’re bad. Do you actually need to rank them and say “Movie X” is worse than “Movie Y?”

This coming from the guy who makes fun of movies semi-professionally.

Anyway, I was combing a few of the “Worst of…” lists and the only one that came up consistently was Norbit. I wasn’t sure if that was the movie to hold up as the shining beacon for terrible movies everywhere because I think it came back in January. Would anyone even remember it? Certainly there are probably less ambitious films, like I Know Who Killed Me, or some kind of horror kill-fest with no-name actors. But at least Norbit was more of a high-profile failure.

Whatever. If Norbit doesn’t work for you, just insert whatever movie you think was the greatest waste of your time this year. The joke works all the same.

I wish I could share with you my picks for the best films of 2007. But I’m holding off on that for right now. It’s something I plan to unveil with Gordon and Joe during our broadcast of The Triple Feature talkcast!

But before I get to far ahead of myself, I need to remind listeners that there will NOT be a show this evening due to the New Year’s festivities. Instead, our show this week will be on Wednesday, January 2 at 9:00 PM CST.

Secondly, our show this week WON’T be our picks for the best films of ’07, but rather a recap show where we plan on talking about all the movies we saw over the holidays. We took a week off last week, so there will be a lot of ground to cover. I was able to see National Treasure: Book of Secrets, Walk Hard – The Dewey Cox Story and Alien vs. Predator: Requiem (curiously, all movies with a sub header in their title). I know Gordon and Joe saw much, much more than that so I know we’ll have a LOT to talk about.

Be sure to call in live and let us know what movies you enjoyed this holiday season! There were a lot of great one’s to choose from. We’re still trying to find time to see Juno, Sweeny Todd and Atonement without completely abandoning Henry!

Switch gears abruptly, since it’s the end of the year and since 2007 has been a year of considerable change for me, I hope you’ll endulge me for a moment as I stop to kind of take stock of things and examine where things ended up for Theater Hopper in 2007.

Obviously the biggest change for me personally was when we brought our first son Henry into the world on February 18. I don’t really know how much or how little to mention Henry in the blog about about movies. But Theater Hopper has always been as much of a sounding board for my personal life as it has been for my semi-professional life. I’ll never forget all of the wonderful e-mails that people sent in after we made the announcement. I’ve kept all of them and one day I’ll share them with Henry.

I worried for a while if having a baby would signal the end of Theater Hopper. In the back of my head, I kind of thought that’s how it was supposed to happen. But then I kind of set my sights on crossing the 5 year anniversary mark and found a way to make it work.

I can tell you that between 2006, when I released my first two books, and 2007 the site has taken a hit traffic wise. I mean, if you look at the archive page and scroll down to 2007, you can see it’s almost a patchwork quilt of guest strips, DVD reviews and movie reviews. These were all ways I sought to diversify Theater Hopper and add value to the site when the responsibilities of parenting prevented me from working on comics. Instead, I think it left people with the impression that I was inconsistent.

I know in 2007 I want to work to make the site better and streamline things more. I’ve been working on a redesign that will take advantage of WordPress and will shed some of the advertising. I want to work hard to bring people back. I want to put out a third book. I want to try and do a few more conventions and stir up interest in the comic again. I want to create a community around Theater Hopper and get discussions going again. And, hopefully, as time moves on, being a parent and being a father are two things I can merge together.

What I do know is that I have some of the best, most kind-hearted fans I could hope for. The e-mails you send… they’re unbelievable. Every now and again, someone will send a note thanking me for the work I put into the site and entertaining them each week. My first thought is typically “But I could be doing so much more!” because I don’t think I’m ever going to reach a place where I’m comfortable and can say “This is the best that I can do.” I want to keep improving as much as myself as for you.

But my second thought is always “I should be thanking *you*.” Because you guys really keep me going. How cool is it that I’ve found an audience for my voice? What an incredible validation. I mean, I’d do Theater Hopper regardless if I got any attention for it. But you’d have to be stupid not to be appreciative of the people who support you.

So, thank you for everything prior and everything yet to come. I can’t say it enough. Thank you.

Have a safe and happy New Year’s Eve. I’ll see you here in 2008.

↓ Transcript
Well, 2007 is almost over. What was your favorite movie of the year?

I’m gonna have to say Norbit was my favorite.

C’mon. Be serious.

I am being serious! The logic is quite simple, actually...

A movie that bad confirms that there is true evil in the world. Forged by hands unholy. Satan, perhaps. Or some mythological equivalent.

But if great evil exists, so too must powerful good to act as its counter weight. There can be no yin without a yang.

It’s actually very life-affirming in its own way.