Pop & Circumstance: End of the Year Awards

So it’s that time of the year, right? Time to hand out some awards to the music, movies, TV and other meaningless pop culture debris that rocked our (well, mine – it’s my award ceremony) collective worlds in 2002. ‘Twas an interesting year I guess, the most notable trend being that peer-to-peer file sharing has completely changed the entertainment landscape. It’s been building up for a while, but it really made its presence felt this year with the sharp decline of the music industry in particular.

But the coming year will see the advent of more effective and precise DVD ripping technology, which will further alter the relationship between consumer, retailer and entertainment business. My guess is that in five years, the retailer will be completely cut out of the equation, and the Internet will enable direct communication between the buyer and the maker. But we’ll see. . .expect a lot more lawsuits, no matter what happens. OK, enough of that. And the winners are…

Best Performer Overall: Eminem

This guy was everywhere this year. What with the greatness of The Eminem Show LP, his most accomplished work to date, and his movie “8 Mile,” Slim Shady reached heights this year that few pop stars will ever achieve. He’s the only sure thing for album sales on the currently shaky music charts, and for this reason, he’ll be around for a while. Nice work, Em.

Runners Up: Will Ferrell, Shakira, Tracy Morgan.

Best Movie: “Signs”

A masterfully-done thriller with a much more complex message than any other movie I saw this year. See it again; I guarantee you’ll notice that there’s a lot more to the story than you originally thought.

Runners Up: “Jackass: The Movie,” “Dogtown and Z-Boys.”

Best Album: Beck, Sea Change

Not Beck’s finest moment, but trumps nearly everything else released this year – there was a ton of crap, friends. Nice folksy sound, with Beck trading in the beats and psychotic ramblings for acoustic guitars and lovelorn poetry. Pretty good. And I didn’t want to give another award to Eminem.

Runners Up: Eminem – The Eminem Show, Jay-Z – The Blueprint 2: The Gift and The Curse.

Best TV Show: “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” HBO

One of the greatest comedy pieces of any age. Seinfeld creator Larry David and his comedian friends do an unbelievable improv sitcom that pushes the boundaries of post-P.C. humor. Five times better than Seinfeld ever was.

Runners Up: “The Sopranos,” “The Simpsons.”

Best Band: The Rolling Stones

I do not care how much they suck now, how old they are or how stupid their latest tour is. It makes no difference. They are gods. Give them your money. And look out for the reissues of their classic 1964-70 albums. Best rock ’n roll ever.

Runners Up: The Strokes, Oasis.

Worst Band: Creed (And the 78 other bands that sound just like them)

I hate Creed. How can you not?

Runners Up: Every emo band ever, Every band on Adult Contemporary radio, Incubus.

Worst Song: Nelly, “Hot in Here”

The worst song of this and many, many other years.

Runners Up: The Vines “Get Free,” as well as whatever song Sting did this year.

Best Song: tie between Eminem – “Without Me” and Clipse – “Grindin”

The beats on these two songs are unreal. I’ve heard each song about two million times, and I’m still not tired of them.

Runners Up: Avril Lavigne – “Complicated” and Shakira – “Estoy Aqui”

Worst Use of My Money: The David Lee Roth / Sammy Hagar Tour This Summer

I cannot believe I paid good money to see these two brain-dead losers wheeze their way through beloved Van Halen classics. Sad, depressing, terrible. The world’s a twisted place.

Runners Up: “Mr. Deeds,” Tyson-Lewis PPV Fight

Coolest Trend: Old Rock Geezers Dominating the Charts

Elvis, the Stones, Fleetwood Mac, Paul Simon and the rest of geriatrics are outselling practically every modern rock outfit on the album charts. Gee, I wonder why? Maybe the new bands aren’t as good?

Runners Up: Jay-Z/ Nas rap feud, “Return of Rock” hype

Uncoolest Trend: Lists masquerading as legitimate journalism

And on that note, let us end this column. So long, dear readers, and I’ll see you next year.