I like reading and watching bad stories. For whatever reason, I enjoy the feeling of looking at, mocking, and analyzing (frequently putting in more effort than the author likely applied) works of fiction that are decidedly-suboptimal.

Why? Part of it can just be a taste for both analysis and parody (there’s a reason why MST3K is one of my favorite shows), but I think there’s more to it than that. Since I like that, I can look more closely at the entire range of badness than I can at the range of what I enjoy. If I find a somewhat enjoyable work that I nonetheless think had potential that it didn’t achieve, that’s more stimulating than a moderately good work that I knew wouldn’t be the best ever but still liked.

Something has to be really good for me to get the same kind of detail in my compared to a piece that’s just somewhat bad. And if it’s really bad, then I can think about it and laugh at the same time.


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