My New Year’s resolutions, IF THEY EVEN EXIST, are secret. Not for your eyes! NEVER!
But! I have some pop culture resolutions for us all. To help us—and the media—be better pop culture folk. So let’s get to it.
10 Collective Pop Culture Resolutions
1.) Don’t just poke holes, find solutions- Some movies, books, tv, comics, etc have huge plotholes you can drive a truck through, true. But not all of them. If you have to work hard to find a plothole, maybe, well, just don’t?
For example, if a show is badly written and acted like, say, an IRON FIST, just focus on that. Don’t spend 20 minutes saying, “AND HOW DID HE CHARGE HIS IPOD?!” especially when there’s like 6 equally plausible explanations.
Sometimes something is really good but there’s a detail that’s new or different or off. Like, say, in the LAST JEDI. You are right, we’ve never seen a ship crash into another at light speed. Instead of declaring everything ruined and broken, consider the aesthetic—in a world, that scene is DOPE!—and the emotion—heroic sacrifice!—and maybe accept film is more about those aspects than logic. OR! If you just can’t do that, go the extra mile. Look at the scene, what was happening, and think why it worked—barely any fuel, came out of lightspeed at just the right second due to this—and why it hasn’t been done before—suicide, impossible to program missile to jump to lightspeed and jump out across the galaxy for killing purposes. If you work that damn hard to find the things that work, spend the extra five minutes making sure you are right, huh?
2.) Don’t just toss your physical media that you don’t want anymore- Donate it to charity or a library. Or hold onto another few months. Streaming might get dicey in a hurry here with recent net neutrality changes.
3.) Try new stuff, but don’t feel guilty for enjoying the stuff you know you like- Something that comes up a lot in comics is people telling you to step outside the Big 2 and that’s solid advice. But also, some people love the Big 2 and have a budget. So take that occasional step, but don’t let anyone make you feel like you are enjoying art wrong or the wrong kind of art just because you love the mainstream.
4.) When Christmas comes next year, no articles about Love, Actually being problematic or Die Hard being a Christmas movie-WE GET IT! GOD! WE GET IT SO DAMN MUCH! STOP IT! STOP IT!
Here’s an incomplete list of other Christmas movies you might like to write about instead: White Christmas, Miracle on 34th Street, anything from the Shane Black canon, Elf, The Nightmare Before Christmas, Christmas in Connecticut, The Santa Clause, Fred Claus, Any Rankin and Bass TV production, Four Christmases, Bad Santa, The Rise of the Guardians, An Arthur Christmas, Jingle All the Way, Die Hard II: Die Harder, and Prancer.
5.) Recommend more than you urge against- It’s fine to dunk on pop culture and I’d never tell you not to. But don’t just do that because you’ll end up believing you are surrounded by garbage when there’s plenty good out there (See Vice’s Top Ten Comics article to see what someone like that sounds like….it isn’t pleasant). And take recommendations too.
6.) No more “they were dead the whole time” fan theories- Just for the year. Might I suggest, I don’t know, he’s the lead character’s secret dad as this year’s fan theory du jour?
7.) Argue your points but don’t be a jerk- You don’t like LAST JEDI? Hey, that’s fine. There is basically no such thing as a universally beloved piece of pop culture. Want to tell me why? Awesome, let’s do this thing. Want to say “SJW” or “why can’t white guys be heroes any more?” or “not a real fan”? We’re done, thanks.
8.) Don’t argue with a jerk- The moment they pull the stuff above? Just disengage. They don’t really want to discuss art, they just want to justify their regressive cruel worldview.
9.) Remember something cannot be for you AND still be good or fun- Especially remember this when it comes to media aimed at teenage girls and women. If us fellas can have gloriously dumb action movies—to be regressive about gender roles—women sure can enjoy gloriously dumb romance too.
10.) Follow me on Twitter- Let me make your life better. Help me help you.