A Growing Problem with Modern Pop Culture


Marvel Studios, CC BY-SA 4.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

Marvel plans to release ten movies in the next four years as Phase 4 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Entertainment is a part of humanity, an ingrained desire to have your brain stimulated, your wishes fulfilled. Ever since that first cave painting, humans have been making art and telling stories. Recently, however, entertainment and pop culture has been a victim to a growing problem, a problem that will need the entire community to band together to fix it.

Simply put, the problem is that stories are growing stale. Reboots, remakes, and sequels, which used to be a rare occurrence in the old days, are now the industry standard. Everyone wants to be the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and in the process, they end up failing to do anything new, or anything remarkable, leaving only a few indies and the series that have already succeeded standing.

In sharp contrast, indie content or even mainstream content that’s not a remake, reboot, or sequel, doesn’t get as much attention at all. As someone works in a theater, I can attest to this. The big franchise films almost always take up all of the screens, with only a select few a day going to other movies. 

It’s even worse in the publishing industry than the movie industry, as there are so many indie books, yet very few ever get reviewed. I can also attest to this as someone who writes his own web-series, Blood and the Stars. No matter how hard I work on it, it’s never going to get the same attention that the new Hunger Games book got, or the one hundredth “modern Sherlock Holmes” retelling.

What’s the cause of this problem? Well, it’s simple. The entertainment community has fallen prey to corporations trying to make a quick buck, sacrificing storytelling for cash. And given how already established series get more clicks and make more money, those are what they put forward, as opposed to something new. This ends up hurting entertainment as a whole, because the same old stories are being told and the same old people end up telling them.

If entertainment is to survive, waves of originality must be put forward, in order to keep that old human desire alive and fresh.