Five things to look forward to in 2018

Age of the Geek Column: Happy New Year!

Last week we went over some of my favorite things to happen in pop culture in 2017. This week we're looking towards the future as 2018 has some pretty great things to look forward to over the next twelve months.

Sea of Thieves

This pirate game has been on my watch list since 2016. Promising an open world of islands to explore, the game will have players teaming up online to navigate ships, find buried treasure, fight off monsters, and flee from other players looking to steal your booty.

If the pirate life is for you, "Sea of Thieves" may deliver an experience that shockingly few games have even attempted.

Now of course it's wise not to get too hyped up. After all, similar promises were made about 2016's "No Man's Sky," and that game ended up falling considerably short of its lofty expectations.

Still, "Sea of Thieves" has me cautiously optimistic. Now I just need to find some friends to go pirating with.

Sonic the Hedgehog

2017 was the end of an era as the "Sonic the Hedgehog" comic book series by Archie Comics came to an untimely end. Starting in 1993, Archie's comic book adaptation published 290 issues, plus a multitude of spin-offs before mismanagement and legal issues resulted in Sega pulling the license last year.

The bad news, Sonic's 24 year comic book run came to an abrupt end.

The good news, he's up for another lap. Sega quickly licensed the property out to IDW Comics, who are set to reboot the series for a new era.

While it's not clear how much, if any, of the stories and characters from the Archie days will carry over into the new book, at least the talent will be consistent. Ian Flynn, who has been the lead writer for Sonic since 2006, is moving from Archie to IDW to continue his work as Sonic gets a fresh start.

Avengers: Infinity War

It seems like only yesterday I was floored by the idea of the first Avengers movie becoming a reality. Four separate movie franchises coming together in an event five years in the making? Nothing like that had ever been done in Hollywood.

Now here we are, six years later, and "Avengers: Infinity War" is posed to start an even more ambitious endeavor. Twenty-two super heroes represented across nine different movie franchises coming together in a story that finally pays off a plot that was first teased in 2012.

The movie is so big that we only get to see the first half of it this year, so expect to see this entry again in 52 weeks when I write about the sequel.

Halloween

Michael Myers returns in 2018 to celebrate the 40th anniversary of his first killing spree. Produced by John Carpenter, the upcoming entry is going all the way back to its roots, bringing Jamie Lee Curtis back to Haddonfield for another round against the masked murderer.

The only thing scarier than the movie is trying to understand the franchises' continuity. In just ten movies, the Halloween franchise has created four different continuities. While "Halloween II" took place immediately after the original movie, "Halloween III: Season of the Witch" was an entirely unrelated story in a completely different universe. " The fourth, fifth and sixth Halloween movies picked up where the second film left off, but that trilogy was ignored by "Halloween H20" and "Halloween: Resurrection," which saw the return of Jamie Lee Curtis and then promptly killed off her character. Then Rob Zombie came in and rebooted the entire thing for his own two movie series.

Which brings us to the 2018 film. If my counting is correct, it will either be the second sequel to the 1978 "Halloween" or the fourth sequel to "Halloween II," depending on if John Carpenter decides to keep the second film in this new continuity.

In either case, the upcoming entry has all the makings of a faithful addition to the slasher series.

Young Justice: Outsiders

Beloved TV shows get canceled before their time. It's a cruel fact of the business. Sometimes good shows just end and nothing you do will bring them back. But sometimes that's not the case.

"Young Justice," a show starring a line up of DC's sidekick characters, was canceled in 2013, seemingly doomed to join the surprisingly long list of great super hero cartoons that abruptly ended after two seasons. But fans never lost hope and, against all odds, that persistence paid off.

"Young Justice: Outsiders" is bringing the team back for a new series of adventures. Don't look for it on Cartoon Network though, or even Netflix, which was largely responsible for maintaining the show's popularity after its cancellation. The new series will be used to launch Warner Bros' upcoming DC-branded streaming service.

Yes, another monthly streaming service to look forward to. But if it has Young Justice, go ahead and sign me up.

Whether the 26 episode season serves as a proper conclusion or is just the start of a new beginning is unclear, but I'll take it either way.

Travis Fischer is a news writer for Mid-America Publishing and hopes everything in 2018 lives up to its potential.