Sunday, January 2, 2011

Death of Geek Culture, Can it die?

I'm chasing deadlines on the moment, so I'll feed you some grub from my RSS feed. I found this article on the Orbit Books blog. This is actually a response by Robert Jackson Bennett on the essay written by Patton Oswalt [[his essay is here] btw I still have not read the essay, since I'm chasing the said deadlines]. Here is an interesting snipped from this response:

In the escape hatch, we’re familiar with such an enormous litany of well-established tastes that all you have to do is reference them one after the other, playing each cherished obscurity like the keys of a xylophone, in order induce the groundswell of support we all so desire. Slap a superhero or a zombie with any underground mythology, like Thundercats or Transformers, and it pretty much writes itself.

Patton thinks that’s cross-pollination. It is, in a way, but it’s within one small field, and it’s among only a handful of flowers. And I don’t think it’s as self-destructive as he presumes. We’re human. We like the familiar. We like the routine. And we don’t like challenge. But that encourages repetition, and sloth, and becomes akin to a terminal patient pressing that morphine button over and over again. It does not engage in the limitless array of culture, and art, and thought that is available in the wide world. And this is what’s necessary to produce a healthy sense of art, of purpose, and of self-awareness.

Honestly, I wanted to copy paste the whole article, but I somehow managed to restrict myself. I think it's well worth reading [but I think it'd be better to read the essay, aka not do like me, but I have deadlines people, ahem].

To a degree I think that the majority of accusations about said cross pollination are addressed to the movie industry. The constant re-makes and re-boots as well as regurgitation of the same old ideas. Also, how the Internet seems to have made things a bit worse.

I think Geek culture is changing. I mean, everything is changing. What was, may not be the very same thing that someone loves and I think the original essay is more of a nostalgic rant [yeah, I skimmed the original essay] rather than a very objective look on Geek culture. The Internet has changed everything by accelerating the exchange of data and Geek culture will definitely morph as the Internet evolves as well.

Where this will lead, I have no idea. I just know that nothing is ever truly dead as far as culture goes, be it dead or otherwise. There are only ups and downs. Currently, the constant remakes, movie novelizations and movies based on books and comics and the cross-overs and then the movie-based games are a low. [I'm biased, I know. Hate re-makes and re-boots].