Over-spill from another thread (related)
Since that's what this is for.
I overpowered this with commas. Sorry. I have an issue. I've since re-edited to make it actually read right. I removed like... 20 commas.
i agree that there are those differences between the two. but i don't think those differences say anything about a person's personality or even whether they prefer good vs evil stories vs political intrigue stories, because both series at least have a little of both. they're far more similar than they are different, and often the reason people like either one of those is not because of good vs evil or political intrigue but simply because both of them are set in space and high technology, exploration, alien worlds, and tons of other stuff. someone can like them for something that the two are similar in just as well as they can like them for something that the two differ on, and since the two are so similar it's far more likely that if someone likes either one, they'd also like the other one. the differences are marginal and those marginal elements don't usually say much about a person
also, even in the elements in which they differ, the other one has a bit of. star wars *does* have some political intrigue stuff (especially in the novels), and star trek *does* have some good and evil stuff and even some mystic/spiritual/religious stuff (in some episodes)
Would you prefer to believe that we're random, or our tastes mean something? I mean the former produces a very random-like design environment. It's not very positive. If we are the way we are for a reason, then that makes our opinions more valuable, and actually possible to dissect.
it doesn't matter what i prefer to believe. it matters what the truth is. and as far as i can see the truth is that taste is largely arbitrary. whether someone likes peaches better than apples or vice versa says very little about a person's philosophy, morality, and personality, just like what star you were born under, or year you were born in, (astrology) says nothing about your personality, and just like what blood type you have says nothing about your personality (which they tend to believe over in japan). people who think otherwise are generally called superstitious
are you really saying we should believe something because we want it to be true, or that it'd be more "positive" if it were true? is that how we should make decisions? listen to what you are saying
Yeah, I phrase things in a strange way. I like this direction. You always make me think.
I think Star Trek and Star Wars are very different. The characters are different. The problems are different. The feelings each one gives me are different. Right, maybe there's a difference between you and me for example, that's implied. I watch Wars and Trek for immensely different reasons. Never have I said, "let's watch Trek," and would've accepted Wars instead... say if I couldn't find the DVD or something. Not that that has ever happened.
One soccer game to another is very similar to me for example. But it can be immensely different to someone else. That's because I only get soccer a little, but it might also be because of what interests me about the game. For some people a difference can be arbitrary and for others it may not be. But I think the majority is in the latter half.
If the two things are the same - Wars/Trek - then that kind of invalidates the artistic process. Good story lines are personal. If, let's assume, Wars and Trek are both personal to the creators and the audience, then to say that they are different in irrelevant ways, you would be saying that the process of creation and consumption aren't unique to the people involved. That's like saying to Lucas, "this isn't really you. This is just a general human, which you call you..." probably at the time when he felt the most unique in his life. It invalidates what happens to the people. It invalidates who we are. It makes us less unique and meaningful.
Ok. So look just at Picard. He's my favourite captain, just because of when I grew up (arbitrary!). I'll compare him to Ben Kenobi, probably the closest analogy. Picard is no-nonsense. He also gets angry, regularly, plays by the book, is firm in everything he does, dislikes relating to children, commands with force. He is very rigid. But he is also kind and play his role as the one responsible for the emotional well-being of others, at least to the degree that it affects their work.
Kenobi is softer, more mysterious. He doesn't give direct answers. He's tired. He's spiritual. He's equally brave, but instead of using direct force he always comes in from the side. He takes the path of least resistance. He doesn't act as the wall between another character and the threats of the world, but as the observant teacher that picks his student back up when he falls down. He also talks in parables like a religious leader. He is more concerned with absolute morality than the practical completion of a task. Death is a dooryway and so on.
Those are obvious generalities. Movies are made of characters. Those characters do things. Saying a movie's characters are like-able for trivial reasons is to say that the friendships you choose in life are for trivial reasons. It's like saying the people in your life who are similar don't provide unique meaning to you. (I know you're not saying that.)
I don't know any two people who mean the same thing to me even remotely. Strangers who I don't acknowledge, maybe. But the more I get to know them the greater the divide. When Naruto - the anime - slips from following the manga I can tell almost immediately. I'm revolted. First I think its me then I realize it's the show. Same characters, same style, same plot... marginally different presentation: huge difference. I know Naruto fans who watch the show in dubs, and that drives me a little crazy because they think it's the same thing. When someone says voice-overs are just as good as the original it feels like they are invalidating all the reasons I liked it.
I feel a very special connection to Star Trek. I learn a lot of things that are unique to that show. I feel a part of me come alive that doesn't come alive in quite the same way with anything else. To tell me that those feelings are only superficially different than the ones I have when watching Star Wars is to tell me that those feelings are a delusion.
It's like how you're saying with eva. She, icycalm (I don't really know him...), implicitly negate whole genres. I think they're just fighting for their own interests more than they are putting down others and are aggressive about it, but whatever (it doesn't matter). The reason you can't put down a genre is because the argument, "I don't see the value in this, so it must mean that others who claim to are just experiencing the same thing as me and thus just don't like good things, and thus are just lying," is crazy. Right? That reasoning says we're all of equal perspective and that if I feel something then you feel the same thing and only one of us is correct.
People flock to Star Trek. That must be for a reason. As arbitrary as humans are there must be something about a person's experience that draws them to one thing or another. Saying that space is space and that ships are ships invalidates the attachment someone might have to the military structure of Star Trek, or older age of its crew, or the formality of its interchanges, or the politeness of their behaviour, or the degree of research and planning they go through before an operation.
The difference in characters' role in Star Trek are by skill. Kenobi does the "mind trick," Han does the gun slinger shooting and fancy driving. Luke does the inspiration and ship+force combo. Leia is the love interest with political power. In Star Trek it's about what insight you can provide into a problem. Everyone sits at a terminal and generates ideas. Everything is theoretical.
Saying we like those things, one over the other, for arbitrary reasons is to say that my interest in theoretical problem solving is arbitrary, or my love for happy endings is arbitrary - Star Trek is more melancholy.
I love Stargate: Atlantis for example because the science is real science. Science is hard and it takes a lot of studying. There's real research, then break-throughs and over-night collaboration. The science guys relative to everyone else - assuming they are non science types - are generally miles ahead. They use analogies non-stop, they're partially socially awkward, they're fast. They often have to explain things 3 times, and so on.
In Atlantis all of this is respected. The "science" guy is a dick and always bumps heads with everyone. But he is actually brilliant. All the "science" happens off screen and the audience only sees the results as the science guy tries to show everyone else his conclusions in a way that they can understand.
In Stargate: SG1 this is not true. The science there is superficial. Impossible problems are solved with a single insight. That science is more like paint by numbers. It's like a child's book on any adult subject. Everything is in different bright colors. There are 3 steps to every solution. There is only one observation to solve any problem. The show is interesting for different reasons.
I like both shows. SG1 shows a simplified version of the "humanity" behind science. Both are very respectful of the subject. SG1 makes the audience feel like they are scientists too. Atlantis shows actual science.
But, the non technically minded friends I have tend to get caught up in the "riddles" of SG1 far more than the ones in Atlantis. Instead they are more - just a little - annoyed with McKay's (the "scientist") anti-personal, condescending behaviour. I like science, I like logic, I like hard problems, but I also like fairy tales. Those things are deep reflections of my life experience. I can see the lack of experience in solving hard technical problems flare up in the pro-SG1-science crowd when we compare the shows' strengths. They are generally self-conscious about their lack of technical ability, so the fast pace of Atlantis, and its gruff nature towards the non-understanding, alienates them.
Only bad shows are similar to each other. The better a show gets the more unique it becomes. This is true of people and everything. ... also, the more you invest in something the more the differences in its sub-components - say shows within a genre - become.
Yes truth is important. I'm not saying we should prefer the nicer to-accept reality over the real one. Though I can understand how you can extrapolate that from what I said.
Ok. Peaches v apples, blood type, astrological sign: these aren't real differences. Taste in television, art, games, activities, people: these are.
What I am saying is that the argument that two things aren't similar isn't provable. TV is perspective. If I tell you that Star Trek and Star Wars are different for me you can never prove me wrong. I can never prove me right. In the proof world it is a stand-off because it is about opinion. All you can do is study and better form an opinion then rely on your instincts to make the best assessment possible.
If you believe that I am wrong then you are saying either:
a. I am lying.
b. I am confused.
Let's skip a because if I'm lying the whole conversation is moot.
B is big. If I am confused, it means:
. The things within myself, that I form a relationship with with the things in the show, are the same for each show.
That means that those things within me, that surface during each show-viewing, are superficially different. Whatever memories and past experiences I am reflecting on, or relating to, are only different in arbitrary ways. That means that those experiences when I lived through them are only different in arbitrary ways. That means that at least one experience was unnecessary.
That is the same as saying that pieces of my life are meaningless. You can't prove that. I can't prove otherwise. So you can make an assumption:
1. Do our whole lives have meaning?
2. Or do only pieces of them do?
The second assumption is inherently pessimistic. You only choose to be optimistic or pessimistic. I'm not saying you are intentionally choosing one over the other. I am saying that the implications of your argument are that you've made the second assumption. Given all else being equal - i.e. there being no proof - why would you choose the negative one over the positive one?
We have to make assumptions sometimes. Why put people down if you don't have to?
I know you're actually being positive. We both are. I'm just running to the radical conclusion for clarity.
Think of it this way. If genre interests identify us, why would the argument stop at the sub-genre level? Why doesn't it carry down to the most minute detail?