Some words from No Majesty editors, at the close of a year like no other.
Thank you for being with us this year.
Dan Cody – Founding Editor, No Majesty
Do enough reading, and you can prepare yourself for pretty much anything, and predict things no one else can see coming. The exception, without a shadow of a doubt, were the events of 2020.
Health crises are one of the very few things that affect everyone, young or old, rich or poor. Even if you were fortunate enough to avoid becoming ill this year, your day-to-day life and the lives of those around you look a little different now. Covid-19, a terrible disease that we still know relatively little about, despite it being in circulation for over a year according to most estimates, has forced people to think and live in new ways.
Something is always created out of pressure, so thankfully 2020 has also been a year for great products of culture — music, films, literature and everything in between. We’ve loved covering these in detail, and giving our recommendations for what to discover.
As a publication, No Majesty is geared towards looking at things from a fresh perspective. We aim to show you sides of a story that you won’t see elsewhere, and hear from people that can inspire you. We think this fits in well with these ‘uncertain times’, as is the accepted term.
Things change every year, from our perspective on the world around us to the way we behave in it. But some years see more changes than others, and 2020 is definitely one to beat.
Leah Welch – Culture Editor, No Majesty
It would be trite to begin an end of year letter by saying something like “what a year it’s been”, and so I won’t. What I will say, though, is that whilst this year has been devastating for many people, there have been glorious moments. And I am going to remember some of the small — and large — victories forever.
2020 was the year that a 22-year-old Mancunian managed to campaign to get the British government to U-turn on a cruel welfare decision not once, but twice. Marcus Rashford showed true altruistic kindness to a country that needed a reminder of what real leadership looks like. 2020 was also the year that we all spent a tense few days refreshing the election page on Google, waiting with everything crossed to find out that Joe Biden won the American election, usurping the very weird presidential choice of Donald Trump. Soon to be nothing more than a bad dream.
2020 was also the year that I saw the Greta Gerwig Little Women film. I know it came out in 2019, but it will forever be known as my film of 2020 (Hustlers was my film of 2019 which is now available to stream on Prime — Little Women is on NowTV.) We were blessed with a new series of The Crown, which came at just the right time as we entered another lockdown. And two of my favourite TV programmes managed to weave the global pandemic we have suffered this year into their storylines: Greys Anatomy and This Is Us have really reached high-culture status now imho.
In the new year, I am hoping for better films to come out: other than Little Women and Tenet, cinema this year hasn’t been brilliant… And for Netflix to rescind their decision to cancel The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. I am also hoping for a sort of global break. We all could do with a minute to chill out I think, to stop worrying and to just enjoy ourselves, properly, for a while.
Paul Klein – Film & Media Editor, No Majesty
To call this year a mess would be to really insult messes. Covid, killer wasps, Boris Johnson and his cronies, the US Election, the terrible murder of George Floyd and even smaller-scale issues, people missing funerals, weddings, loved ones in their final moments or greatest achievements.
If the year has taught me anything it’s that no matter how bad things are, how truly dark they appear, they can always, somehow, get worse.
But, the dawn always rises and with a vaccine on the horizon, Boris cleaning shop and Trump about to move out things could get better. No matter how bad things get, and how worse they could get, people always manage to surprise you. This might have been the year of Cummings-gate but it’s also the year of Captain Tom Moore, and the BLM protests, sparking a wider conversation about the nature of policing and racial history. Personally, losing three loved ones and not being able to pay proper respects to them and say goodbye was particularly hard, and yet it’s time to look forward.
It’ll be strange to enter the new world of post-Covid, perhaps even stranger than the world moving on from 9/11, this was a year-long ordeal marked by deaths for everyone across the planet, and stress beyond compare. The new world after this will hopefully carry with it something deeper and more meaningful, hopefully people will be better to one another. Hopefully those killer wasps don’t make a surprise comeback and fuck it up.
2020 won’t be missed, but it will be remembered, and as we move towards 2021 I can only offer it this one piece of advice – if you’re not going to be a great year, stay out of our way.