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Post By
Late Great Donald Blake
Moderator

Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 7,358
In Reply To
Norvell

Member Since: Sun Jan 02, 2011
Posts: 3,786
Subj: I'm only asking you about a thing you talk about ad nauseum.  
Posted: Wed Dec 29, 2021 at 12:31:35 pm EST (Viewed 79 times)
Reply Subj: Re: I am the Judge, Jury, and Blakesecutioner!!
Posted: Wed Dec 29, 2021 at 12:50:02 am EST (Viewed 84 times)

Previous Post


    Quote:
    LGDB:  Well the literally nothing that I'm basicing it on is the trope that old people are suspicious or resentful of new things.  That's certainly not totalizing, but it's also not "literally nothing."

That's more ageism than anything, and as I've said, I'm not that old. I'm kind of the target range of age for a comic that costs ~$4-6 USD a pop. Kids ain't investing in this stuff.


    Quote:
    LGDB:  Okay great, so it's a statement of fact, as in not opinion.

Statement of fact that there is a correlation between the so-called bitterness and negativity of the board and the PERCEIVED drop in quality. Clearly they occurred around the same time. Your argument is that it's a coincidence, and that it must be that old people don't 'get it'.


    Quote:
    But as it's apparently meant as a statement of fact I'd say it's pretty controversial on and apparently highly disputed.

No, it's a fact that the negativity on the board increased over the past several years.


    Quote:
    In other words despite, just because something is obviously a matter of your opinion, doesn't mean that the claim you're making (in your opinion) can't be subject to criticism or be capable of being wrong.

Of course not. Why on Earth did you think I would claim otherwise? Again, this is how language works, with statements being made without disclaimers and asterisks that they only represent the person voicing them. This is language 101.


    Quote:
    It's usually through subtle and small distinctions that people try to wriggle out.

Oh, and what am I trying to wriggle out of?


    Quote:
    LGDB:  Yeah I'm not trying to convince you of anything either.  We're having a public conversation.  I'm not in your DMs as it were.  We're both making a case on a public forum.

If I were trying to make a case, I'd make it. I'm stating my opinion, which is backed up by other posts I've made. Should I start a Wikipedia page so you can follow me through my criticisms?


    Quote:
    LGDB:  These are at least gestures towards of evidence.

Which I'm not trying to provide.


    Quote:
    Is there any of these that you think is the strongest case you'd have to make.

No, because anything I say is subjective, and what smells like garbage to me might be the best thing you ever tasted. I can say that I think splash-ages emphasizing 'Iron All-Father!' or the 'Iron God!' or the 'Ego the Necroworld!' (as if readers are going "wowowow!") are absolutely nauseating or painful to read, but you might think its all brilliant.


    Quote:
    The difference between gimmicks and well-worn literary tropes or devices might be objectively the same, i.e. if it's an example you don't like you call it a gimmick, if it's an example you do like you call it a literary device.  And the same with over reliance.  Who decides the appropriate use of these and whether or not they're being "relied upon" as opposed to utilized?

See? You can spin anything Aaron or Cates does as being a valid and well-crafted use of storytelling. Which is why I'm not going down that rabbit hole, having already admitted (repeatedly) that its my opinion both Aaron and Cates' stories are plagued with fluff gimmicks, hollow plots and utter abysmal conclusions.

I can look at Simonson or even Busiek (!!) or Fraction or Gillen and see that Aaron and Cates are not in their league at crafting stories. If Simonson is a 10, and Fraction is a 6, Aaron and Cates are hovering around 1 or 2.


    Quote:
    LGDB:  I also liked that one lol  I think we have different criteria for what makes a thing good.  I'm curious why they're so different.  Like why your criteria are so compelling to you.

I have better taste than you, a firmer grasp of a the source material, and I expect more out of the franchise? Just a hunch.


    Quote:
    LGDB:  Okay now this part to me is gosh darn fascinating.  So what was the point at which his stuff was the kind of quality you thought was worth defending transformed into garbage?

I didn't say I necessarily liked it, I just pushed back against a lot of the criticism against Aaron and promoted the notion that he should be given the space to tell his own version of Thor and Asgard.


    Quote:
    You at one point like his stuff.

No, being a fair person, I was very OPEN to liking his stuff.


    Quote:
    LGDB:   Oh pray tell what am I acting entitled to?   If it's considered entitled to expect someone to justify their claims (especially their strong and strident claims) then I don't think it's an inappropriate or unjustifiable form of entitlement.

You act as though I'm required to write essays detailing and cataloguing my issues with Cates, under a strict literary definition, package my findings and then present them to a judge and jury (you) who will then determine whether or not the predicate for my statement is worthy of consideration. At which point, I guess, I'll be allowed to be on my merry way.

Thanks, I'll pass.


    Quote:
    As far as Blake being punished in the way he's being punished, it's certainly in keeping with the kinds of punishment the Aesir would dole out in the mythology.

I'm sure Cates is like, "Yeah! See, I had this great story ending planned, but I had to ditch it because Blake is now the God of Lies and mythology demands that he must be cosmically tortured; the very thing that created his evil in the first place. Hah, my hands were tied, don't blame me!"

Way to pass the buck. Cates wrote the story, and this is how he ended it. Don't blame the myths for his hackery.

The rest of your post is more of the same. Sorry, I snipped it.


That's more ageism than anything, and as I've said, I'm not that old. I'm kind of the target range of age for a comic that costs ~$4-6 USD a pop. Kids ain't investing in this stuff.


LGDB:  It's a light ageism at most! lol The kind old people should have by now developed the character to not care too much about.  And I don't know how old you are, but 18-34 is still the largest demographic, and while that's not kids, it's certainly not the old foggy set.



Statement of fact that there is a correlation between the so-called bitterness and negativity of the board and the PERCEIVED drop in quality. Clearly they occurred around the same time. Your argument is that it's a coincidence, and that it must be that old people don't 'get it'.

LGDB: Oh is that my argument?  I thought that was a joke I made briefly.  No.... my actual position is that the criteria for "poor quality" most of the time is subjective and arbitrary and has very little to do with the writing.  And further, I'd wage that political orientation is probably a better determiner of whether people like comics written by Cates or Aaron than age is.


No, it's a fact that the negativity on the board increased over the past several years.

LGDB:  On that we agree.   But I think it has far more to do with social/cultural factors.  One being internet discourse generally becoming more negative, and two, this board being dominated by strident, extreme negativity of a select number of posters which creates the illusion of some kind of consensus.  Basically the people that hate the writing post more and post in a more attention getting way, which stands to reason: if you think writing is just okay, or even pretty good you don't usually post about it, but if you're angry about it or resentful or opposed to what you think the "bad" writing represents or you get some kind of sense of superiority for crapping on other people's art, you're going to be motivated to post more.


Of course not. Why on Earth did you think I would claim otherwise? Again, this is how language works, with statements being made without disclaimers and asterisks that they only represent the person voicing them. This is language 101.


LGDB:  No it isn't.  Or at least it often isn't and certainly doesn't have to be.  Believe it or not you can make distinctions between not liking something I thinking that thing is bad objectively.   People do it all the time. And generally speaking the principle is that the more analytical the discussion, the less conversational the conversation becomes, the more you'd want to make that distinction so as to avoid the confusions.  THAT'S how language works: people are as precise as the context demands they be.  Most of the time people don't insist on keeping the same ambiguities that characterize daily speech when they're having an argument about something.  Arguments are ABOUT clarifying things by disabusing ourselves of these kinds of ambiguities.  I agree when you're speaking fast and loose in conversation it's not necessary.  But, in a conversation (that you've chose to participate in) where you're being even borderline analytical, it's an easy distinction to make.  And it's not just an appropriate distinction to make on the basis of not taking responsibility for justifying a strong claim, or what have you.  It's also just basically sloppy thinking that causes confusion between two kinds of thoughts or opinions that LITERALLY MEAN DIFFERENT THINGS.  There's simply a difference between saying you don't like something and you think it's flawed at an objective level.   Using the two interchangeably I think is usually done either to obscure what you're saying (or avoiding having to justify what you're saying) or because you don't know the difference most of the time.

I'll put this as a question: do you feel like there isn't a difference in meaning between "this is my opinion of a piece of art" and "this art is objectively bad"?  Or is it that you think that basically in most conversation most of the time--even apparently when you're arguing about whether or not a thing is bad or not--those two differences in meaning should be collapsed?  






Oh, and what am I trying to wriggle out of?

LGDB: Oh you know, having to justify your opinion.  Not liking something, it feels I lot better to say there's something wrong with. "It's not me, it's the thing."  It feels better to pronounce things as one way or another.  But of course that's a really difficult thing to establish, and so it's easier to pretend that you're making those pronouncements and then when asked to be in anyway rigorous hide behind, "oh it's just my opinion."   And you may not think you have to justify it.  But I think when you crap on people art your probably should have to.  And ultimately I think you DO at some level want to justify your position, because otherwise why would you still be participating in the conversation?  


If I were trying to make a case, I'd make it. I'm stating my opinion, which is backed up by other posts I've made. Should I start a Wikipedia page so you can follow me through my criticisms?


LGDB:  No but you could provide a link.  That HAS to be less work that this reply you did lol  And if that's too much work, you know, to provide a link to one of the essays where you actually make a defensible critique of any kind...Okay, how bout this:  next time you make an actual argument for why a thing is bad... rather than a baroque and angry screed about why the writing is bad that you've rendered immune from rational critique because it's "just opinion" maybe put an asterisks by it or something lol  Man, if only Donny Cates and Jason Aaron could find a way to shield their writing from criticism the way you've shielded your own criticism from criticism.   Hey, I know... maybe they can say their writing is just their opinion lol


Which I'm not trying to provide.

LGDB:  So what are you trying to do?



No, because anything I say is subjective, and what smells like garbage to me might be the best thing you ever tasted. I can say that I think splash-ages emphasizing 'Iron All-Father!' or the 'Iron God!' or the 'Ego the Necroworld!' (as if readers are going "wowowow!") are absolutely nauseating or painful to read, but you might think its all brilliant.


LGDB:  Well no.  At least not exactly.  Your ultimate judgment of a thing (whether you like or not) is of course going to be grounded subjectively.  But again, the field of literary criticism exists for a reason... because there's more to say about something like this than just "well whatever I say people are just going to disagree with."   You could point to features like structure, characterization, things like that, and show how they function in the context of the story, and explain this is what I think is happening in the text (which is an objective claim or at least attempts to be one).  The idea that you and I might disagree about whether or not a thing is good, means the only way to talk about it is to talk AS  IF our opinions are objective.  And proclaim loudly "this is crap!" while another person yells back, "NO it's good!" just isn't in my opinion an intelligent way to approach this.  The entire point of things like collectively developing theories of art and literature, literary conventions, criteria of judgement  and so on is to be able to have a productive conversation about a thing that people would otherwise be very split on.  

And I'll give a concrete example of an objective example.  But let's first be clear about what I mean by "objective" because this gets confused a lot.  When I say objective here I mean, having to do with the qualities of the object (as opposed to my own feelings or experiencing of it.)  I don't mean objective to be a synonym for unquestionably, unassailably truth.  An objective claim can still be wrong, the point is that is ABOUT the object (in this case art) as opposed to a subjective impression or judgement.  

So, as an example, I might criticize a piece of art by saying the dialogue is unrealistic.  That's an objective claim about the text.  Judging whether or not it's true is subjective in some sense, but the point is I've moved away from talking about my feelings about the dialogue (something no one could dispute) to a claim about the qualities of the actual text, i.e. that the way people speak in it doesn't faithfully capture how people speak in real life (and it's assumed the author means for it to be realistic.)  And I can actually provide evidence and argument and so on for how and why the dialogue is unrealistic.  Now... and this is important... I can never bridge the gap about whether people CARE  if the dialogue is realistic.  Someone may agree that the dialogue is unrealistic but still enjoy the piece.  But a critic hedges their bets that their audience, reader, etc. shares the criteria, i.e. agrees that realistic value is something the piece should have or that unrealistic dialogue is off putting.  Whether the piece should be one way or anther is up to the individual.  Whether the piece IS one way or another isn't up to each of us.


See? You can spin anything Aaron or Cates does as being a valid and well-crafted use of storytelling. Which is why I'm not going down that rabbit hole, having already admitted (repeatedly) that its my opinion both Aaron and Cates' stories are plagued with fluff gimmicks, hollow plots and utter abysmal conclusions.

I can look at Simonson or even Busiek (!!) or Fraction or Gillen and see that Aaron and Cates are not in their league at crafting stories. If Simonson is a 10, and Fraction is a 6, Aaron and Cates are hovering around 1 or 2.


LGDB:  Yeah but you can't seem to articulate why.  I think most of what you're presenting is just  a tautology.    You can just see that it's bad.  You can just see and know.  It all just seems really thin.  And again I understand you're just stating your opinion, but I think the more strident, the more damning, the more objective sounding you articulate the opinion, there's a proportionate burden to justify you're position.  That is if you want to have intellectual credibility or integrity or what have you.

 And it's not anymore spin to explain why the writing works for me than it is negative spin rationalizing ad hoc why you didn't like it.  I KNOW we're both doing that.  That's kind of my point.  But if we're honest, we can admit the order of operations here.  In other words, you generally have your initial impression, which by the way is mediated by any number of predispositions, and then we justify that impression (especially if we're invested) in a bunch of rationalizing scaffolding that dresses up the impression as being something more than it is.   



I have better taste than you, a firmer grasp of a the source material, and I expect more out of the franchise? Just a hunch.

LGDB:  Yeah but I'm better looking, smarter, and better at sex.  An equal hunch.



I didn't say I necessarily liked it, I just pushed back against a lot of the criticism against Aaron and promoted the notion that he should be given the space to tell his own version of Thor and Asgard.

No, being a fair person, I was very OPEN to liking his stuff.

LGDB: Ah.  Just curious.  How long did that last?  What was the point of departure for you?


You act as though I'm required to write essays detailing and cataloguing my issues with Cates, under a strict literary definition, package my findings and then present them to a judge and jury (you) who will then determine whether or not the predicate for my statement is worthy of consideration. At which point, I guess, I'll be allowed to be on my merry way.

Thanks, I'll pass.


LGDB:  Not for me to judge, for the public board to judge.  And I think this is a bit of distorted way of presenting the basic idea of being expected to justifying a strong claim.  IF I was going around saying something is crap unequivocally and repetitively, I think I'd be willing to explain my reasons.  I'm not demanding anything of you personally, so much as I'm just reminding you of some pretty basic intellectual standards.  Also, a lot of this is out of my own curiosity.  But it's also that if you make a criticism repeatedly publicly eventually people are going to get curious enough to drill down and see if you explain your reasoning about it.



I'm sure Cates is like, "Yeah! See, I had this great story ending planned, but I had to ditch it because Blake is now the God of Lies and mythology demands that he must be cosmically tortured; the very thing that created his evil in the first place. Hah, my hands were tied, don't blame me!"

Way to pass the buck. Cates wrote the story, and this is how he ended it. Don't blame the myths for his hackery.

The rest of your post is more of the same. Sorry, I snipped it.


LGDB:  Yeah I'm not saying that at all.  lol  I'm saying that if your criticism is that Blake's punishment is too harsh, there's some mythological basis for the Aesir exacting just such a harsh punishment.  And I've said nothing about anyone's hands being tied or that it was some kind of necessary decision, I'm saying it's a justifiable character choice, at least at the level of whether its in keeping with an acceptable notion of Asgardian justice.

And I think the criticism of passing the buck is ludicrous on its face.  I don't think the ending is bad much less hackery in the first place, so I don't need to excuse, anymore than you'd feel the need to "excuse" the writing that you enjoy.  

As far as you "snipping the rest of the post" (by which you mean ignoring),  I mean that's your business.  Anything you don't want to address I'm fine with.  I try to address anything in your posts that YOU think is important because that's how an argument in good faith works, but it's your prerogative.  But to be fair, it wasn't more of the same.  You ignored a few things that were in no way repetitive of the above stuff; like for instance where I asked you if you had a link of one of your critical essays.


cheers,
---the late great Donald Blake




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