Tuesday, March 12, 2013

I Know it’s Stupid, but…

I think there are certain movies, TV shows, books and songs that we know are stupid but (for whatever reason) still like them. [And I don’t mean things that are so bad that they’re good (e.g. Plan 9 From Outer Space), I mean things are actually bad and there’s no filter that makes them good]. I suppose these are guilty pleasures because we should know better, and in fact we do know better and that’s why we feel so bad about liking them.

Ideally, I wouldn’t like anything stupid because it certainly doesn’t deserve to be liked. Recognizing stupidity is often instantaneous, and my brain screams: “Don’t read it! Don’t watch it! Don’t listen to it! It’s too stupid to like!” But every so often some dumb part of me refuses to listen. And I will enjoy that poorly written novel. And I will be entertained by that utterly absurd movie. And I will sing along to the lyrics of that song that should make me cringe at its insipidness. And I will feel bad about liking something that lacks quality.

Liking something stupid tends to take me by surprise. I think most of us want to believe that we have good taste and that we like things for good reason…but sometimes that doesn’t happen. Sometimes something stupid weasels itself into your good graces and you just can’t seem to shake it off. [Pause.] It’s stupid.

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