The end of the year and the beginning of a new one always come with an endless supply of end-of-the-year recap lists. The best movies, tv shows, albums, trends, food and more. Although all recapping the same year, these lists tend to be very different from one another. But they all fall into a few general types:

 

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This list seems to be written by someone who can't remember where he put his glasses, let alone anything that happened more than a month ago. These recaps will list things that are so fresh in the writer's memory, that it's obvious he didn't put any work into research. He sat down, wrote a bunch of things he remembered well, because he literally just saw them last week, and called it a day. Beyonce's new album, The Hobbit sequel... if you want to recap the last four days of your life, this is the list for you.

 

 

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If you're looking to recall all the best experiences you had in 2013, this is not your list. The Obscure List, usually written by first year film students, amateur indie DJ's, and the most hipster of hipsters, will be complete with things that might have happened this year, but you certainly hadn't heard of. French films that were even banned from France, Fringe theater that played in an alley behind Arby's and new music sub-genres you didn't even know existed, like underground Caribbean dubstep. You'll recognize more stuff if you read an end-of-the-year recap for 1837.

 

 

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Go on google. Search for most popular searches. Make list. That's pretty much how these lists are written. The exact opposite of the obscure list, you can guess everything on the list before reading it, and there is no chance of bumping into a hidden gem that you might have missed. A list of Twerking, Breaking Bad and things foxes say. This list is completely unnecessary, and only reminds us how predictable our lives are.

 

 

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Reading a yearly recap is good, harmless, fun. Unless you decide to make the list more than 100 items long. I mean, be serious, it's just one year. How many good stuff really came out? If your list is 100 items long, you're not picking the best moments of the year- you're just writing everything that happened in it. The writers of these never-ending lists simply can't commit to choosing what they liked best, so they wrote down all the options, and let you decide.

 

 

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These lists reek with ulterior motives. They will try to mask themselves as legitimate lists by picking popular and well-deserved items, but every few picks, you'll see something you don't recognize. You'll think to yourself- "Well, I must have missed this album/web series/blog. I should check it out. After all, I did like most of the things on the list". Well, you've been tricked! The item you don't know? That's the writer's friends' band, their cousin's YouTube channel, their girlfriend's Vine account. It's not the best the year had to offer. Hiding it between the new Arctic Monkeys album and the series finale of 30 Rock won't make me fall for it. Kudos for trying, though.

 

 

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This is the laziest of lists. The website or blog you're reading it in just copy-pasted their favorite posts from the passing year, and combined them into a recap list. They didn't even bother to go through the links to see if they're still working, since they published them in mid-January. I really wanted to know what your favorite reality show of 2013 was, but I'm pretty sure "HTTP 404- Page not found" is not it. Although, it does sound a little better than anything aired on Bravo.

 

 

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The only list worth reading. It will feature the best choices, from every part of the year. There will be different genres, popular items and obscure one combined. The links all work, the choices are explained properly, and everyone can find at least 2-3 of their favorite things in there, as well as things they missed but would like. How did this perfect list come to be? The writer probably planned it since January 1st. It took a whole year to write, adding items every time something good came out, editing out things he liked at first but got sick of very fast. This writer really put in his time. For him, the best thing that came out on 2013 was this list. So, if you're planning on having a good list for 2014 you better start right now.