Earthworm Jim creator, Doug Tennaple, provided a cup of wisdom on Twitter recently.
"If you buy my books to fight SJWs (Social Justice Warriors) instead of because my books are good, you're a moron." While there has been a cultural war going on in most of our media and hobbies, there have been a surge of creators fighting against this attempt to sabotage everything we enjoy. From the many independent comic creators within #ComicsGate to even YouTubers starting to fight for their favorite hobbies, we have seen an increase of these "counter-culture" values placed into the content we consume. For instance, YouTuber Arch has called his viewers to action in a noble attempt to help save Warhammer 40k from poor business decisions.
There is a huge caveat with this. As critics and consumers alike, we need to ensure our political views don't influence how we rate the quality of a piece of work. As evident with flops such as The Last of Us 2, or Birds of Prey, these examples tried to appease a target market through political messages and attempted virtue signaling. The problem with these two properties is their alienation and degradation of a core audience, an audience that would've happily supported them otherwise. What if the PR was completely inverted, yet the overarching quality of the writing and visuals remained the same? Some of us may be guilty of funding an IGG campaign not because of what it was supporting, but because they were targeted in a harassment campaign. There's nothing wrong with wanting to support someone who is unfairly targeted in such a disdainful manner. In fact, we all have an inherent desire to see and achieve true justice to the best of our abilities. But what about the art, the writing, and the effort put into that project? The way we defeat this cultural sabotage is by putting out higher quality content, uncensored by "virtue police." Sure, we can buffer ourselves using the words of the social agitators to our advantage and boost our marketing capabilities, defying #CancelCulture . If it helps increase funding for this fight, then so be it.
This strategy certainly helped ThatUmbrellaGuy reach a whopping $140,000 + for his new upcoming release.
https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/another-case-for-the-littlest-umbrella#/ However, we need to remind ourselves to be grounded when it comes to judging these forms of creative media. You have to ask yourself what's most important in a medium and objectively look at the execution. You must disable your political senses in order to coherently judge the content you're consuming.
Does the plot make sense?
Does the anatomy make sense with the art style? Am I really into this story and theme?
What could they do better next time?
These are some of the questions we need to ask ourselves when we submit our payment when supporting our fellow creators. If we don't practice a level of mindfulness, it's possible that money is flung around without a hint of thought, and you could be inadvertently be financially supporting *actual* Nazi propaganda (as opposed to the "SJW Definition" of Nazi propaganda.) Lets hold ourselves accountable of creating and supporting amazing content for our audiences. Not just because they're in the line of fire, but because they are talented people who should be incentivized to continue creating amazing works.
Next up, we'll be taking a look at Doug Tennaple's "Earthworm Jim" in our next blog post in detail. We'll cover all the nuances that makes it great, and what could be improved upon. Stay Tuned!