Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Second Album/Novel/Whatever Syndrome

There's nothing more enjoyable than discovering something new that really floats your boat. A new band, a new writer, a new TV show - whatever it may be, the joy of finding a new thing to get into is always a particularly pleasurable one. It does, however, seem to come with a potential downside - there's always the risk that what comes next just doesn't hit the spot. Or the absolute worst case scenario - the new thing is so far from what you enjoyed initially that you begin to forget why you enjoyed it the first place.

For example, way back in the dim and distant days of the early nineties, I got into Oasis in a big way. Was completely obsessed with their first two albums/ However, their subsequent tendency to just keep repeating the same Beatles rip-offs combined with their utterly obnoxious public personas actually drove me to the point where I no longer even enjoy those first couple of albums, even going so far as to get rid of them. (Although I must admit I quite like The Importance Of Being Idle - I guess because it's a Kinks "homage" for a bit of variety.)

It happened with Heroes. Here was a programme that I was completely addicted to during its first season. It was a lot like a TV version of all the best parts of X-Men comics over the last 25 years. Then came the lacklustre second season (curtailed by a writers strike) and a third season so devoid of anything resembling character development and plot coherence that it resembled all the worst parts of X-Men over the last 40 years that I jumped ship and haven't looked back with regret once.

How can something so filled with promise go so wrong? I guess in each case there are a myriad number of reasons as to why something successful sadly stumbles down the path to failure. I sometimes begin to suspect that some things only have a finite amount of greatness attached in them. Maybe this band only has one great album in them. Maybe that writer only has one great book in them. Or maybe it's a byproduct of the way certain aspects of culture accelerate so that we demand more and we demand it faster and creativity doesn't have a way of keeping pace with demand. Either way, it's always a sad day when something that once gave joy becomes a source of disappointment.


Tristachio said...

It's totally like when you eat a spicy burrito. At first it's extremely delicious and you can't have enough of it but then when you spend hours on the toilet because it's burning your butthole so bad you are all "Why God, it wasn't even worth it!"

Sort, I think. I just wanted to say Butthole to someone today.

MJenks said...

I agree with you on both the Oasis and the Heroes thing. I enjoyed Heroes right up until they started jumping around time--again--and poorly at that.

Fortunately (for me at least), Neil Gaiman hasn't jumped the shark yet.

That Baldy Fella said...

Tristachio - But I will still go back and eat that burrito again. Not the same one, obviously. That would be revolting.

MJenks - I just remember getting through half of the third season of Heroes and thinking, "Why am I still watching this? I just don't like it." So I stopped, which goes against my usual "must know what's going on" instinct, even if something is rubbish.

Irish Gumbo said...

Nail on the head, my friend.

And my word veri was 'ficies'...not sure I want to know how that might be pronounced!

That Baldy Fella said...

Cheers, squire! I have a sneaking suspicion I know how that might be pronounced...