Yeah, I'm stuck in the Spidey saves yet kills Gwen Stacy past, I guess... haven't really hung out at my local comic book store in a dog's age, by Crom...
I kept up with comics til my mid-twenties. In recent years, I've discovered libraries carry the trades. I very much liked Astro City and some Alan Moore. But I can't stand the remakes and reboots in the comics. I like the new ones, whose story gets told and actually counts. That of course means I read very few trades.
Temis the Vorta wrote:
Who's to say King Ethelrods tastes are all that exalted?....If you take the decision making out of the hands of market forces, who are you giving the power to instead, and will you be any better off?
The King Ethelrods are themselves market forces. Patronage is market-led artistic production, just for a smaller market. The corporations whose advertising is pays for broadcast TV are also imposing their tastes on the creative system. Both the King Ethelrods and the corporations take into account the effect on the masses of their display. That's why neither are known for buying porn. Both the King Ethelrods and the corporations have distinct social and political slants to the products they buy.
As for artistic production that isn't guided by market forces, a mix of subsidized productions selected by popular vote instead of purchases; critics' panels; fan clubs; delegated groups acting as independent commissions; random choice and simple government purchase would be genuine non-market forces. Some would be more democratic than others.
But so-called consumer sovereignty is not what it's alleged to be. And it is most especially not equivalent to democracy or populism.
....That's as ludicrous as saying that a composer who writes for the trumpet is less creative than a composer who invents an entirely new wind instrument. It simply doesn't work that way. The pre-existing characters and concepts are just your building blocks. It's how you put them together that matters.
The analogy simply doesn't work that way. The correct way of putting it is to assert that when a composer writes pieces that use older tunes as building blocks, what matters is how he or she puts them together. That Morton Gould's famous medley of Americana or Beethoven's Wellington's Victory reusing well-known tunes, or, even that another arrangement of a tune is just as creative as pieces of music that don't reuse themes.
Not too long ago, I listened to Tom Leher's variations on Clementine, with great pleasure. Unfortunately I am now authoritatively instructed that my failure to appreciate Mr. Lehrer's musical creativity showed me to be ignorant and insensitive. Sort of ruins the experience.