Wednesday, Jul 30, 2014 01:00 am est

The best of the Arts staff’s ‘Best of 2012′ lists

Posted on January 1, 2013 | by Jonathon Dornbush

Combing through the thousands of entertainment releases can be a daunting task for any writer, let alone for teams of critics to determine the best of the year.  Yet, as 2012 comes to a close, the WSN Arts staff has worked together to choose the best albums, films and television shows of the year.  Ranging from expected hits to underdog picks, these lists represent the combined efforts of the Film, Entertainment and Music desks to determine the peaks of artistic expression in the last 12 months.

For explanations of each choice, check out our Arts-dedicated blog, The Highlighter, and leave your own choices in the comments below each article.  Here are the full lists as well as links to our previous coverage.

The Top 10 Films of 2012

  1. “Lincoln”
  2. Moonrise Kingdom
  3. “Argo” — Ben Affleck’s latest directorial endeavor is a love letter to cinema, the United States and even Canada. Based on the Iranian hostage crisis of 1979, “Argo” shows that behind every great movie is an even greater tale of real human triumph.
  4. “The Avengers”
  5. Cloud Atlas
  6. “The Dark Knight Rises” — The sad truth is that nothing could have topped the overwhelming quality of “The Dark Knight,” but Nolan’s final entry in the trilogy certainly makes an effort. Audiences are brought into an uglier, less hopeful Gotham City than they’ve ever seen before, with Tom Hardy’s Bane shedding light onto anarchy and complete abandonment of order.
  7. Django Unchained
  8. The Perks of Being a Wallflower
  9. Les Misérables
  10. “Silver Linings Playbook”  — Both Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence show new levels of realism in their performances, and Robert De Niro even co-stars in what may be his first quality role since the ’90s. David O. Russell’s latest film is fun and quirky in the best and least obnoxious way possible.

The Top 10 Television Shows of 2012

  1. “Mad Men”
  2. “Breaking Bad“ — The finale’s stunning cliffhanger is just a sample of some of the surprises the season had to offer.  With only eight episodes before the show’s end, “Breaking Bad” is as strong as ever, and the fifth season only stands as proof.
  3. Homeland
  4. Revenge
  5. American Horror Story
  1. “Parks and Recreation” — The easy standout of NBC’s Thursday night lineup, “Parks & Recreation” delivered its best material in 2012. The second half of season four followed the end of Leslie Knope’s campaign for Pawnee City Council, allowing Amy Poehler to deliver countless excellent performances.
  2. Girls
  3. Community“ — “Community” can accomplish in half of a season what most other shows can do in a full year. Need proof? Just watch “Digital Estate Planning,” an episode from May that was done in the style of an 8-bit video game.
  4. Glee
  5. “Don’t Trust the B**** in Apartment 23″

The Top 10 Albums of 2012

  1. Blunderbuss“ - Jack White
  2. Shields“ - Grizzly Bear
  3. “Visions” – Grimes
  4. “Bloom” – Beach House - Beach House made their mark on 2012 with “Bloom.” After hovering around the bubble of greatness for a few years, the Baltimore duo seems to have finally entered the pantheon with its newest album’s lush dream-pop sound.
  5. “Babel” – Mumford & Sons
  6. “Lonerism” – Tame Impala
  7. Coexist“ - The xx
  8. The Bloom and the Blight“ - Two Gallants - With its fourth and best record, this San Francisco duo uses a unique blend of folk rock to resurrect the spirit of rock n’ roll.
  9. “good kid, m.A.A.d. city” – Kendrick Lamar
  10. Halcyon“ - Ellie Goulding

Jonathon Dornbush is editor-in-chief. Email him at


  • Leora

    What happened to theater and books?

profile portrait
Felipe De La Hoz

Multimedia Editor | Felipe De La Hoz is a Colombian national studying journalism at the College of Arts and Sciences. Having been born in Colombia and raised in the United States, Mexico and Brazil, Felipe is a trilingual travel aficionado and enjoys working in varied and difficult environments. Apart from his photography, Felipe enjoys investigative reporting and interviews, interviewing the likes of Colombian ex-M-19 guerrilla fighters and controversial politician Jimmy McMillan. He has covered everything from governmental conferences to full-blown riots, as well as portraiture shoots and dining photography. Having worked under Brazilian photojournalists for Reuters and AFP, Felipe hopes to one day work on demanding journalistic projects and contribute to the global news cycle.

Ann Schmidt

News Editor | Ann is a liberal studies sophomore who lived in Florence during her freshman year. She plans on double-majoring in journalism and political science and is always busy. She is constantly making lists and she loves to laugh.


Daniel Yeom

Daniel started at the Features desk of WSN last Spring, writing restaurant reviews whilst indulging on free food and consequently getting fat. Last Fall, he was the dining editor, and he this semester he is senior editor. Daniel is in Gallatin (living the dream) studying Food & Travel Narratives, incorporating aspects of Food Studies, Journalism, and Media, Culture, and Communication. He loves food more than life itself.

Hannah Luu

Deputy Multimedia Editor | Hannah Luu is a ridiculously great Deputy Multimedia Editor. She is a sophomore from Northern California. If you think Northern California means San Francisco you might need to closely examine a map. She is passionate about NPR and being half Asian.

  • How to join:

    The Washington Square News holds open weekly budget meetings at its office located at 838 Broadway every Sunday. All are welcome to attend, no matter your background in journalism, writing, or reporting. Specific times for meetings by desk are listed below. If you wish to talk to an editor before you attend, feel free to check out the Staff page.

    5 P.M. 6 P.M. 6 P.M. 6:30 P.M. 6:30 P.M. 7 P.M.

    Applying for an editor position: Applications for editor positions during the fall or spring semesters are available twice each academic year and can be found here when posted. Applications for the Fall 2012 semester are closed, but check back for Spring 2013. Those who wish to apply are urged to publish pieces in the newspaper and contact current editors for shadowing.

    History of the Washington Square News:

    The Washington Square News is the official daily student newspaper of New York University and serves the NYU, Greenwich Village, and East Village communities. Founded as an independent newspaper in 1973, the WSN allows its undergraduate writers and photographers to cover campus and city news and continues to grow its strong body of award-winning journalists and photographers.

  • The WSN has a circulation of about 60,000 and can be found in over a hundred purple bins distributed throughout campus. It is published Monday through Thursday during the fall and spring semesters and online on Friday, with additional special issues published in the summer. The newspaper recently revamped its website during the Fall 2012 semester.

    Like few campus newspapers in the country, the paper is editorially and financially independent from the university and is solely responsible for selling advertisements to fund its production. The WSN, including its senior staff, is run solely by current undergraduate students and the business-division is largely student-operated as well.

    A Board of Directors comprised of alumni, NYU professors and working news media professionals serves as advisors to the paper. Board members have no control in the WSN's editorial policy or newsroom operations. Alumni of the newspaper are established and leading journalists in such news organizations as The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, NBC news, ABC news, Fox News, and USA Today.