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Author Topic: How can you say it’s bad?  (Read 711 times)

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Offline Forlorn Serpent

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How can you say it’s bad?
« on: November 28, 2017, 04:53:03 AM »
Money is the great equalizer, you either have it or you don’t. It can be used to measure what truly is effective or isn’t. So let’s move to my point.

What is a good story from a writers perspective? It’s kinda an easy answer if you are taught it by writing gurus. You can learn the answer from in a class, a book, a YouTube video.

However, what is the point of a story? I think the point of a story is either to entertain or teach. Most books/manga/anime we read are for entertainment reasons. At least in our circle.

So, how can you say Dragon ball, DBZ, DBGT or DB super sucks from a writing perspective? The money and fandom say otherwise. Even if it was nostalgia, wouldn’t the first time around prove it sucks. Or the Japanese markets from the beginning shun the bad writing?

My point here is that you can('t) live with the paradigm of what story/character development is. There is more to it since obviously authors capture something more that what is in a character arc.
« Last Edit: November 28, 2017, 05:47:14 AM by Forlorn Serpent »

Offline GreenTrap

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Re: How can you say it’s bad?
« Reply #1 on: November 28, 2017, 05:16:11 AM »
Coming from a university full of socialist Thatcher-era teachers with George Orwell fantasies, they’d remind us that writing, film, theatre and such should be about the working man throwing off the oppressive shackles from the conservative/liberal/*insert target group here* elite.

If I’m reading your point correctly, I guess you could say quality doesn’t always mean quantity  :noidea: I hear a lot of people say Nichijou was a great comedy series but it had poor sales. It didn’t have much of a story, other than being a collection of school girl mischief.

If I read your point wrong though... here’s a picture of a guy called paradigm  :thumbsup:

Spoiler

Offline Forlorn Serpent

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Re: How can you say it’s bad?
« Reply #2 on: November 28, 2017, 05:53:41 AM »
oops, i edited my original piece.

does paradigm mean something different over there?  definition-a typical example or pattern of something; a model.

that's one of the reasons i quit grad school. You are being taught their (as in their time) reason for writing. Not todays. of course, the working Man model might have some relevance today in middle america, which is highlighted with the alt-right movement.

Offline GreenTrap

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Re: How can you say it’s bad?
« Reply #3 on: November 28, 2017, 06:31:37 AM »
I thought it meant something similar to paradox, but i can see I am wrong  :unsure: Are you saying money alone defines the quality of a series?  :hmm:

Yeah, I’m not knocking the working man theme but I am bummed that they didn’t move onto anything else in the lectures. Maybe that is what’s makes the sales with stories, since working man is more identifiable to people  :hmm:

Offline KeanFox

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Re: How can you say it’s bad?
« Reply #4 on: November 28, 2017, 07:02:20 AM »
Speaking of the working man. Bill Burr talked about how one punch man is about the working man.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r4WQal7L2Cw
The show so popular that its reaching people like Bill. Or maybe he is watching animated shows because he has one. Anyways.

Popularity and good or not totally different things.
As a creator know which one you are after. A lot of marking can make a show popular. And making good work doesn't mean it will get you popular.

Offline Forlorn Serpent

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Re: How can you say it’s bad?
« Reply #5 on: November 28, 2017, 07:34:35 AM »
well if you view something from an ideological lense, in this case, capitalism, classism, marxism, blah blah blah, you will find it. Just like if you look for sexism and racism, you will find it in a story.

Remember people, The Pied Piper is a cautionary tale of the dangers of Laissez-faire economics which supports that regulations of business need to be enforced or generations (the children) will suffer and eventually lead to a collapse  in society.  And this from a one page children's poem.

Am i saying Money defines equality(freudian slip) quality?
no, what i'm saying is that there is more to it than just "this is what a story is suppose to be"
« Last Edit: November 28, 2017, 07:42:36 AM by Forlorn Serpent »

Offline GreenTrap

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Re: How can you say it’s bad?
« Reply #6 on: November 28, 2017, 07:48:42 AM »
If you go cherry picking, you're gonna get cherries  :thumbsup:

To think one punch man could be a working man thing has suddenly given me a new perspective on it  :hmm: It's like one of those youtube videos about some disney character being the actual villian of the movie, you suddenly see things in a different light.


Offline MahluaandMilk

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Re: How can you say it’s bad?
« Reply #7 on: November 28, 2017, 12:21:47 PM »
Interpretations are neither here nor there. You can point out things in a piece of media and use them as examples to formulate your own narrative, as we English majors are adept at perpetuating. The problem with the truth is that it's so massive that one perspective cannot capture all of it.

That's my very brief blanket statement on the matter.

Offline 50 Words for Paipis

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Re: How can you say it’s bad?
« Reply #8 on: November 28, 2017, 12:38:33 PM »
Money is the great equalizer, you either have it or you don’t. It can be used to measure what truly is effective or isn’t. So let’s move to my point.
But is the thing whose effectiveness money measures quality of writing, or production values, marketing, distribution, and/or the circular effect of popular appeal? That success is based solely on quality seems to be a big assumption to base your argument on.

On analysis: there are a lot of bad ones. Even in well-established journals, there are analyses that are more like projections than analyses with textual evidence and historical and biographical context. It comes from this idea that the work's meaning is defined by the audience, not the author. I don't disagree that the intersection of the work and the audience is a meaning, but those are a dime a dozen.  It only makes sense to appeal to that in the case of trying to explain it's success in a particular historical context. I guess I'm old-fashioned in that I find biographical analysis more interesting.

Offline MahluaandMilk

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Re: How can you say it’s bad?
« Reply #9 on: November 28, 2017, 01:04:14 PM »
On that note, money only has the value that we assign to it. It isn't intrinsically valuable. We say "this $20 is worth $20, even though $20 right now is very different from $20 in 1980 because of the economic concept of inflation."

I wouldn't say it's anything more than a measure of how much money you have; however, the scientific definition of "work" suggests that a "result" must be obtained for "work" to have been done. For example, one can push on a wall all day and exert copious effort, but of the wall does not move, then one has not actually performed "work". Based on this example, if the outcome you assign to "result" is "amount of money", then, well...sure.

Offline Forlorn Serpent

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Re: How can you say it’s bad?
« Reply #10 on: November 28, 2017, 01:15:25 PM »
@50 Words of Paipis & Mahluaandmilk       Yeah, I also didn’t get laid in college and annoy people at parties.


The point though was that there are no standards to writing no matter what people say. Twilight sucks, hunger games suck, dragon ball sucks, Shakespeare sucks (who gets the reference), but eventually they are still part of the cultural consciousness. 
« Last Edit: November 28, 2017, 01:20:01 PM by Forlorn Serpent »

Offline MahluaandMilk

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Re: How can you say it’s bad?
« Reply #11 on: November 28, 2017, 01:20:30 PM »
I'm pretty sure making assumptions about our sex lives isn't exactly relevant to the topic you proposed (besides, I've seen people who fit that stereotype far worse than Paipis or myself).

In any case, I do think you're right on the basis that there is no universal standard for writing, because everyone more or less has individual standards and tastes, and that popularity is typically seen as a cultural indicator of success, along with money. There are always going to be people who don't like something about what's in popular media, but they can indeed pull any evidence they want to from a work and explicate their reasoning, no matter how rough-around-the-edges that explanation may be.

I don't understand exactly where the issue is with this? Does there need to be some universal standard, and do you believe that universal standard should be monetary success?
« Last Edit: November 28, 2017, 01:35:11 PM by MahluaandMilk »

Offline Forlorn Serpent

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Re: How can you say it’s bad?
« Reply #12 on: November 28, 2017, 01:49:22 PM »
[saved for different discussion]

I’m using my phone so I’m just going to wait until I get Home to finish this topic.


The reason I brought up money was that someone said DRagon ball was trash. How is that possible if it’s still around and still making money.

I’m not saying there needs to be a universal criteria for a good story but what we are taught about story structure is not everything there is. And to pretend otherwise annoys me.

Offline MahluaandMilk

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Re: How can you say it’s bad?
« Reply #13 on: November 28, 2017, 02:00:10 PM »
You and I can definitely agree that the way things are taught needs some serious help, especially here in the United States...but that's also another discussion.

As for how someone can say that a big-name like Dragon Ball is bad is probably purely a matter of individual values aligning differently from popular cultural values. Perhaps a person who dislikes the franchise has a personal bias against violence for any reason they feel valid. It could also be that they have certain ideas of what a main character should be--for example, "sympathetic", and maybe because of this person's biases, they do not see Goku or Vegeta as "sympathetic" characters.

In my case, the story is simply too long for my tastes, although I would not go around saying that it's absolute trash. To make the analogy better, I'll use Twilight, which I recognize is a commercial success. I read the first book in middle school, and some of the ways that the romance between Bella and Edward was portrayed made me uncomfortable, and I would describe some of the tendencies as "obsessive", "toxic", and even "stalker-ish". I also have a personal idea of what constitutes a "vampire", and while I am familiar with the trope of the tragic vampire who does not want to drink human blood, I feel that it was not executed quite as well in the later scenes of the movies when human-drinking vampires were introduced. In my opinion, the tension should have been higher, and more based on the "more human" characters' reaction, as well as the werewolves (I think the werewolves were introduced by that point, anyway...).

So, a TL;DR of why I don't like Twilight: my personal ideas of "vampire" and "relationships" were not aligned with the media, therefore I can't bring myself to enjoy it like most people do. I recognize that it is a massive commercial success, but because of those biases, my lens for it is hued, so to speak, so that even the good parts of it seem dulled. That's how biases work, as per my understanding of them.

Offline devola

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Re: How can you say it’s bad?
« Reply #14 on: November 28, 2017, 02:14:21 PM »
I think this is a pretty simple question to be honest. I feel like most people would actually agree with you on the idea that rigid rules that govern how "good" a story is aren't the only things that make up whether or not that story succeeds.

I'll try to speculate on a possible reasoning behind why they may have asserted that DBZ is trash because of it's poor writing.

There's often a huge gap between critical reception and general reception of media, and that's usually because the intent of the two groups is actually quite different. Perhaps what the person who qualified DBZ as trash meant by that assertion is that DBZ does not serve to elevate story telling (in their opinion as this is highly subjective) as a whole due to it's lack of nuanced writing techniques. Because it does not utilize or exhibit any of these goals, it is therefore "trash" (I would personally use a different term here).

On the flip side, people can enjoy DBZ for a myriad of reasons that go beyond it's technical writing capacity. I would even go so far as to say they like DBZ for reasons that DON'T extend into that territory. The question is, what is it about DBZ that appeals to people outside of it's writing quality? The person that asserted DBZ is trash gave one possible reason, I believe they said that DBZ is only popular due to nostalgia. This is both a fair criticism and a fair reason for it's success, but it's most certainly not why DBZ became popular enough to warrant nostalgia in the first place.

Exploring how and why DBZ became successful despite it's apparent lack of written quality is an interesting topic in of itself. I actually think it's a worthwhile venture to explore for anyone that wants to see the genesis of a classic manga series.

TL;DR
The point is, people will have different perspective's when it comes to how they judge media and as a result I don't think nebulous terms like "Trash" actually mean much in the long run without contextualizing what aspect of that media you are judging. Values will differ from person to person, but we shouldn't disregard contrarian opinions just because they go against the grain.