Popularity Destroys All Good Things

August 16th, 2020 by

A teacher once said to me “just because something is popular, does not make it right.” This teacher was referring to opinions and ideas.

It is a trope in the 1980s angsty teenage movies that the outcast kid wants to be popular. It was good to be the geek, good to be the freak. Yeah, pretty girls would shun you, jocks and face men maybe put you down, but you did not have to conform. Popular people had to conform to certain ways of doing things, and had to hang out with only popular people. Geeks hung out with other geeks, but did not have to stick with the narrow group. In the old 1980s movie once the outcast became popular, their life actually becomes miserable. The outcast never knew how good they had it until the outcast became popular.

Popularity has with it certain requirements. When it comes to being a teenager, if you are popular, you are expected to associate with only certain people. If you stray from the popular crowd, you are ostracized and shamed publicly. Falling from popular to nothing. The people you shunned, the nerds, geeks and outcasts, come back and pick you back up.

Unfortunately, popularity not only destroys people, it destroys culture. When I was a young geek, there were things to escape the world and enjoy the company of other geeks. Comic books, science fiction, fantasy, roleplaying games, it was all part of geek culture. Then it all became popular.

Then Iron Man came out, introducing a bunch of people to what was really cool to the Geek Set. CGI, and special effects caught up to the needs a superhero movie required. Hollywood realized it could stick true to the character origin, and actual costume, with only a few modifications, and have an awesome action movie. This launched the whole Avengers series. Avengers was the most awesome movie. Everyone whom would have shunned geeks were pumping geeks for information. Attractive women were sitting and talking about how awesome the movies were, and watching superhero movies. People became more interested in what was geeky. Science fiction, fantasy and other things became very much en vogue. Suddenly those cute cube dwelling women whom would slap a sexual harassment claim on the geek for looking at her tits by accident, was now dressing up at comic cons in skimpy superhero costumes and giving Joe Geek a photo op.

But, popularity destroys. Suddenly movies had to follow certain guidelines and adhere to the cool kids popular dogma. The fun was sucked out of all the movies. Statements had to be made, virtue had to be signaled. Comics, the origin of all things superheroes became the throw stuff at the wall, see what sticks, then make a movie. Things fell apart.

Stranger Things brought Dungeons and Dragons to the popular forefront. Suddenly all the people whom would have not sniffed at the players of the game, were interested. Tabletop gaming, roleplaying games were taken over by popular kids. Suddenly the games had to conform to the popular concepts.

Video games grew to become major money makers, and popular. There were great games developed. Interesting stories and themes. Then the games soon had to cater to what is the popular mantra. Now video games are starting to become boring saturated concepts.

Yeah, it sucked not being popular, but when one realizes one has to sell their soul, and destroy their individuality to be popular, it ain’t worth it. The same goes for culture. Geeks loved comic books, roleplaying games, and video games, once the stuff was viewed as unclean, became cool, it lost its soul.

Popularity destroys. It was a lesson that was being taught in the angsty teen movies of the 1980s, and it is a lesson people should have learned. Now all the fun that was part of being a geek, is gone. One needs to worry about what is next. What will the popular kids want to make popular?

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