you need to be home with me, alone with me
it's December 24th, and you need a break. I got you.
It's so weird that this will be the last dispatch from me this year. I don't get to do a full Year in Review because I only started TATBB back in October, you know?
Think of this issue as a reprieve from the bustle that's likely going on today. Hanukkah, Christmas, Yule, all the winter holidays are overlapping and things aren't as easy for you right now as they might have been back when all you needed to do was get dressed and sit in the car while your parents or caregivers drove you to the mall for last minute shopping or to a relative or friend's house to celebrate, and you had your Walkman/Discman/MP3 player loaded up with your favorite jams. Like, right now, I have to wrap some presents for the kids in my life and drop off a late card at the post office for my awesome godmother, who still sends me birthday cards even though I'm a whole grown person. My birthday was on the 10th too, so she really does not need to do that, yet I appreciate that she does!
So, here are a few things to check out:
A Very Boy Band Holiday: This special aired on ABC last year, and can be streamed on both Hulu and Disney+ in the States. It's a cross generational gathering, with New Edition and New Kids on the Block, Boyz II Men, *NSYNC, 98 Degrees, and O-Town, with a special appearance from a girl group member! I also found out in this special that BIIM's Wanya Morris is Jewish.
Six13's "A Nice Jewish Boy Band Hanukkah", set to the tune of "I Want It That Way", and Boyz II Menorah's "A Week and a Day"! Though this one isn't boy band related, I also feel obligated to include Daveed Diggs' "Puppy for Hanukkah".
This Must Be Pop's boy band Christmas album episode, which I will most likely be listening to while I run my errands. They were also kind enough to make a playlist, which you can listen to on Spotify. Which leads into…
The Backstreet Boys released their first Christmas album this year. During their heyday they only had a lone Christmas track, which seemed like a misstep considering the fact that they were so huge in the late '90s, and that *NSYNC served up Home for Christmas and energetic banger "Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays". At any rate, you can enjoy it on YouTube, where they give you the Yule Log treatment. You can also listen to it wherever you get your music, including library app Hoopla.
Two books, if you spend your evening unwinding and under a blanket! The first is Marni Bates' Decked with Holly, a YA novel about a girl who, while on a family cruise trip, meets the drummer from a Jonas Brothers-like group and falls into a fake (but could turn real) relationship. The other is 100% for the grownups: Julie Murphy and Sierra Simone's A Merry Little Meet Cute. Two unlikely stars meet in a Vermont town to make a Christmas movie for a Hallmark Channel-esque network. Bee is a porn star who's been tasked with being the female lead after the original pick is injured at Burning Man, and Nolan is a former boy band member trying to reshape his image after an incident at the Winter Olympics. Bee had a huge crush on Nolan when she was a teen, and Nolan is one of the top subscribers on Bee's OnlyFans-type account. They have to play at being wholesome, sexy shenanigans ensure.
Take it easy, friends. I can't promise that 2023 is going to be [insert adjective of excellence here], because that feels a little bit like jinxing the whole operation before it begins. Just know that I'll still be here, always ready and eager to talk about boys in the bands.
Thanks for reading To All the Boy Bands I Loved Before. If you haven’t already, subscribe and spread the word. And, as always, keep the boy band pride alive.