Here we are again. Even in the hardest times, I keep coming back. deviantART (that's its real name) has always been my vice. Every day, I come to the site, I look at what drawings, paintings, photos, and read the occasional poem are in my watch messages from contacts and groups, and I always try to comment on them. There is also almost no day when I don't add something to my favourites. The art is commonly overlooked still, but there are people it gets to and it makes us think.
One day, teens and young adults will be telling kids something starting with "In my day". "Those discs used to be like boxes"; "We were in the same room when playing video games together"; "We had only one program for computer paintings" Hollywood and making movies were a phenomenon in its genesis. Instead of just books, people got movies to make or watch for fun. The silent movies would be hilarious to today's audience even if those movies were serious.
As technology has evolved, the greed came in. Hollywood doesn't care about the controversy on racial stereotypes, sexualizing, whitewashing roles, or just what would be a terrible idea for a movie. That's not the only problem these days. TV shows have been a phenomenon as well. There was a terrible idea that it would make people stupid. The real problem is how overplayed the episodes are. There are moments that cross a line. Many franchises gained masses of loyal fans, but there's a point when someone says, "Why is this still going on?"
The answer to that is simple: the more views, the bigger the popularity seems. Plus, there are budgets to take into account. Even when fans wish the shows to be cancelled, odds are that hell will freeze over long before that.
The media teaches lies and myths as well. Because of the strictness on showing gun violence, movies in the 1950s, mainly those set in the Old West, have the sound of a bang followed by a shot of the character reacting. The first movie logic created was that a bullet from a pistol would send its target flying. Reality shows have been lies as well, but that's expected. Though possibly unknowingly, the men at "Pawn Stars" have ripped people off; the show "Mystery Diners" is a subject of forums and articles on being completely fake; the survivalists on "Naked and Afraid" have seen bigger danger and producers have had to save those who came across a potential disease or have been poisoned. And now I know that on "Hell's Kitchen", the contestants that were most hated were allowed to stay even long after overstaying their welcome, which was likely done for the drama and for viewers of the following episodes. Of course, the producers don't care about that; they just want more views and more money to keep up with their charades.
The shows of fiction have had moments of crossing lines. The first episode of "SpongeBob SquarePants" to have the characters in a different light was "Good Neighbours". Squidward, who was made to be the egotist, was being tormented for no reason except that he just wanted a quiet day, and SpongeBob and Patrick are oblivious to that. That opened the floodgates of episodes of Squidward, being made into the character meant to be hated, being pitied. It was the episode "A Pal For Gary" that had me decide that I was done with the show. Gary was antagonized over being frightened and attacked by a monster. When the title character is made into a total asshole, the show has long since overstayed its welcome, and yet, the show is still making new episodes.
In spite of that, Hollywood will still want another "Mission Impossible" even when Tom Cruise gets grey stripes in his hair, "Transformers" will still get follow-ups written without thoughts, and Johnny Depp might be stuck in Jack Sparrow's shadow. It's like a family, generation after generation, milking a cow that can't die.
You can have a good idea, and you can have a bad idea. Good idea: bringing up real-world issues. Bad idea: the people in the wrong don't get their comeuppance. The bad idea has been frequent in TV these days. In two consecutive episodes, "Family Guy" botches an attempt to address abusive relationship. One teaches the moral "Don't stand up for yourself and stay with your abuser" and the other teaches "Rely on your brother and his friends to take revenge for you." The eleventh season of "The Big Bang Theory" has a moment of going too far with mistreating Sheldon and Leonard after Sheldon learns that Kripke has hijacked Sheldon and Amy's wedding date. Shortly after, in the spinoff "Young Sheldon", there's an episode of a little girl picking on Sheldon and his parents argue over settling it. Even after urgent counselling, Sheldon is still bullied by that girl.
Another bad idea might be copying someone's works. After the success of the first "Hunger Games", producers used other young adult action books as source material. As a result, based on reception, "Divergent" and "The Maze Runner" came off as carbon copies. As copying someone's work is a bad idea, copying or gaining inspiration from something that wasn't even good in the first place is even worse. There's always the sequel that's hoped to become the "Empire Strikes Back" of their series (I'm guilty of that, too), but with the first of an intended series, we have a hard time finding something that wasn't yet dug up from the mine of ground-breaking gold. That's why we have remakes, which may not be as good as the original, leading to debates.
If books weren't made to make people think, churches wouldn't hold their book burnings. I don't know the details of that, but it's true that religious people always want others who don't attend church to think about the Bible. The Bible is just another piece of source material for someone's book, movie, or video game. That's only one example of my opinion that religious people are hypocrites.
In the book "The Hunchback of Notre Dame", Frollo is the Archdeacon of the church, which brings his hypocrisy. He has a plan to have sex with the infamous gypsy Esmeralda or she would be publicly executed. He's made the Minister of Justice in the Disney adaptation as him having such a high power would make this villain more hateable (RIP Tony Jay, one of the best voices ever heard). Priests and deacons look up to God, who must be a mystic in fiction, and yet they oppose witchcraft and wizardry. It's what made the "Harry Potter" series controversial: the idea that it promotes demonism and cultism. It's ironic, though, that in the Renaissance Era, no one had a problem with naked buttocks of the subjects of paintings or sculptures, and yet today, children and maybe even teens are barred from looking at naked people in movies.
However, as books have made people think, movies have made people think. There's always a movie to make you not trust the government, among other subjects. There's a movie for everyone with a specific issue. That has actually been around longer than one thinks. Even kids' shows have addressed the serious issues. "Sesame Street" has had an episode talking about death and episode introducing a young Muppet with autism; "That's So Raven" and "Static Shock" each have an episode with a premise built on racial discrimination; "Charlie Brown" and "Arthur" each have an episode of a friend diagnosed with cancer.
"Steven Universe" isn't just the first kids' show and first cartoon to be created by a woman; it's the first kids' show to appeal to the LGBTQ community. The protagonists, being sentient mystical gems with human forms, are for all intents and purposes gender-neutral, but are portrayed as women. The title character is the only boy among them. Part of the lore is that pairs of these gems can fuse together to become a powerful entity, sort of like Chimaeras being perfected by such. It also is a part of relationships, which is why it encourages homosexual relationships. One episode addresses an abusive relationship. Steven takes a friend Lapis Lazuli along for a boat trip in "Alone At Sea". She talks about her time fused with Jasper, keeping their fusion Malachite at the bottom of the sea, and she says "I miss her". Jasper does get on the ship, wanting to get back with Lapis, but she doesn't want Jasper. She's been traumatized by Jasper and wants her away, knowing that the line "I've changed" is not believed. Lapis makes it clear that their relationship is over with a mass of water as a power punch (suck it, "Family Guy").
The latest game to make me think is the Indie game "Night in the Woods". Mae comes back from college, having dropped out. She suffers from major depression, knowing that the smallest thing could bring her to break out in violence. She wanted to come back to where everything is familiar to her. Her best friend Gregg, who is a hyper troublemaker, works at a convenience store and gets bored easily. He steals and breaks things and leaves work whenever he wants. His boyfriend Angus takes things seriously and seems to be the responsible one. They know that they have to leave Possum Springs; they know it's not for them. Mae's other friend Beatrice works at a handyman shop, a family business. Bea knows that it's not for her, but sees no choice, and she's like the doll of the doll house. Mae encounters a drifter named Bruce being supported by the local church. However, he's really from another town, and after a while of reflecting his life, intends to return to his family, to see his daughter again and be there for his grandchildren. There's a cult as it seems, kidnapping people and killing them, because they "don't contribute to society". They know that the town is falling apart, their businesses are losing money, and the kids don't come back. There's a reason that such is familiar to me. Also, the song "Die Anywhere Else" is the first song from a video game to speak to me. And there have been many songs to speak to me.
Music isn't the only thing to inspire me. It all started with the TV and the video games for my imagination and my dream of a future. Action movies made me want to be an actor. Furthermore, there are fictional characters to make for idols. 007, Batman, Spider-Man, Bob, Kaiba Seto. I always wanted to be like them, which is why I make characters who are physically strong and not backing down from a fight. One inspiration in particular, my source material for "Play For Me": I was longing to order it online and finally bought it after it came back in stock. I plan to keep it as an example of good writing. If an event drives you to growl, something must've been done right. And I know, as more movies are released, as more books are being published, as more songs are being recorded, I will always find some kind of inspiration.
Here we are again. Time for a feature. I'm glad to have you, my contacts on dA, my dear friends. And I hope you're glad to have me, too.