Can The Concept of a Medium Intrigue Us to the Point Where We Enjoy “Subpar” Art?

NOTE: In no way am I saying that you loving a certain medium is a reasonable argument to you liking a certain thing within that medium.

Whenever I play a video game, observe a drawing, watch an animation, or a movie I always find myself obsessed with the idea that it even exists. When thinking about the concept of Art or just consuming Art I can’t stop myself from being enamored and fascinated by how it was made, why it was made, the people behind it, the internal affairs during it’s inception, and how it exists in our material world to the point where I end up appreciating things that most would find awful.

Take the game Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde for example. The game is arguably not anything too great, but the fact it’s a game and it exists gives me an unbelievable high and appreciation. Not only that, but Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde is such a strange concept for a game on the NES that it has you wondering, and it has you appreciating it exists even more.

I don’t like the concept or term guilty pleasures. We should all like what we like and justify that within our own reasoning. Society likes labels to make things more normalized and mainstream and overall easier to identify with. It’s a collectivist ideology that does nothing but annoy me. I’m an individual. I’d rather explain my points and analyze a piece. But I find myself sometimes using the term “guilty pleasure” and “consensus bad” when speaking about a work of Art I only enjoy solely because I’m obsessed with what goes into it. Why is that?

I think when you enjoy something or can get through it easier solely because of your love for that medium you start to feel the need to draw from others opinions.Since we ourselves are so confused with enjoying for how it was made at first we began contrasting other peoples thoughts. Or at least I do. You see, I need to an outside perspective and such to make comparisons to. So, when I begin consuming a piece I think a lot about how I feel and about how others feel too, but this is irrelevant to what you like unless you’re going to use their argument in a way to strengthen yours.

I don’t always have that particular mindset in mind in fact it’s almost a rarity. It’s only when I plan to write about a show or it suddenly pops into my mind when it’s important. When I’m playing a game my mind is being flooded with facts and concepts within the medium. So, in a sense I’m so energized by the medium itself to the point where I don’t care what it is I’ll take it.

This isn’t to say I like things that aren’t “good”. But what is good?! Good is a very subjective thing to which any reasoning can apply if you’re okay with when you consume the medium. With this in mind, I can enjoy whatever Art I want to just because I love the process in which it was created etc. So yes, I do believe the concept of a medium intrigue us to the point where we enjoy Subpar Art, but it’s not subpar art you see. If you’re enjoying it that means it’s good. You have your own individual since of what good is. You can’t objectify that. You can compare it to the consensus, but that is more or less irrelevant to what YOU think.

I’m very critical with some things and with others I’m not. Sometimes it can just really depend, but just to be clear there is a difference in appreciation, enjoyment, liking something, something that is conceptually good, something that’s fun, and not liking something. You can get very deep and specific when it comes to how you feel about a game or show. More likely then not you’ll have to back up your terminology or no one will know what you’re saying. I’ve had many things in video games where I did in fact “enjoy” them even though I knew they weren’t exactly “good” TO ME. That’s the thing some games just have charm, and if you combine that with a true love for a medium you can get something very special.


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