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Y The Last Man, INTERNET OUTRAGE IS MANDATORY!

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Pat:
Except the lead character in Y is male, which you're ignoring with your claim that people need a character to identify with that matches their immutable characteristics but don't need a character with immutable characteristics to identify with, and thus can't identify with the characters of Y because all the men are dead.

I largely agree that the characteristics you're discussing can help make a movie more easily accessible to the masses. The point I'm making is not all success is based on following existing patterns. There are very successful and highly formulaic franchises that follow that advice, like the Marvel movies. But there are also stories that are not formulaic that manage to achieve success, which is what Amazon and Netflix have been aiming at with their highly experimental and creator-led productions. They've had a number of breakout successes that are at least as untraditional as Y. Whatever side of the people need to look like me/people don't need to look at me fence you're trying to Schrodinger, there are stories that manage to get people to identify with people or even not people who are very unlike them. That's why I'm emphasizing it's the quality or lack thereof that sunk Y, not some fixed sized market.

I have some experience with marketing, just not in movies. Similarly for all your experience in writing, you're not a movie or TV show producer, and it sounds like you're aiming for the mass market rather than what I'm addressing.

ChrisFox:
No, I'm not ignoring that the lead is male. Once again you're missing context. Having "a man" isn't enough to get people to identify.

When marketing, in all forms, you are relying on symbolic recognition. I have flown all over the world teaching this stuff, and literally wrote Write to Market. Google the phrase and see what comes up.

It doesn't matter if you are selling apps, books, RPGs, TV Shows, or drugs. Reaching an audience requires that they understand the value proposition, and that it apply to them.

If I have romance in my books, and my target audience doesn't like romance, then all they need to see is the bare-chested hunk on my cover and they're not going to give it a further look. I have provided them a symbol that says romance. If on the other hand I use a dragon, or a crown, or a throne, or a sword, then I am much more likely to attract my target audience.

This show's title makes it clear that all but one man is dead. The marketing made it clear that it's for a woke crowd. If you are a cis-woman, or a man, then it holds very little appeal for most people. You can contest that, and I expect you will, but can you explain to me why you think it was cancelled?

Free Guy crushed it. Why? Because they knew their audience, and wrote something they knew we would love.

Y excluded a huge segment of its audience, and if you could beyond your pride and gather some empirical data you'd be forced to agree. Go anywhere from reviews to YouTube comments and hear what people have to say. Straight women have no hot men to look at. Men have no one to root for, just a world of people who the show runners have made explicitly to hate on them.

I think people you vastly underestimate the intelligence of the average consumer. It may have taken us a bit, but most SF geeks have gotten wise to the fact that the wokesters are in charge and shoveling out garbage without any understanding of their audience. Quite the opposite. Their stated goal is to exclude parts of the audience, not to go as wide as possible.

I know a lot more about television than you think. I've had people try to option my properties, and am currently helping a good friend get his production company off the ground precisely because many of us know we can do it better than Hollywood. Just like we first with ebooks, then audiobooks. Yes, we know executives at Netflix.

You can't dictate to people what they like. You have to understand the emotional resonance they are seeking, and then provide it. The arrogance of the show runners is hilarious, because this can and should have been predicted prior to the show going live.

You can try to move goalposts, but television IS trying to aim for a mass market. That's the goal of every show. That you don't know that shows me how little understanding you have of television. They'll shoehorn in entirely separate genres just to broaden appeal into a new demographic.

Pat:
Yes, you were ignoring the male lead. And then you keep changing the goalposts from your initial contradictory post where you were simultaneously arguing for tokenism and not for tokenism, to this new one where you've completely changed your argument and said a lot of things I can actually agree with. But this is two posts in a row where you've acted like a patronizing asshole, so you can fuck the hell off.

ChrisFox:
You're not wrong about me being a patronizing asshole, but go back and look at your very first post. Does it say anything about the male lead? No it calls me out and says:


--- Quote ---Are you incapable of enjoying media where none of the major characters are exactly like you when it comes to certain immutable characterstics?
--- End quote ---

And then I explained why most people are, in fact, exactly this way, based on real market research. I am shifting no goalposts. I stand by my original sarcastic post. This show got cancelled because the show runners have no clue who their audience is, and don't care in the slightest. Their take what we give you approach put them all out of a job. We work for the audience, not the other way around.

I'll dial back the patronizing attitude. I was probably reading too much into your rebuttals, and I apologize for that.

Pat:

--- Quote from: ChrisFox on October 18, 2021, 10:56:35 PM ---You're not wrong about me being a patronizing asshole, but go back and look at your very first post. Does it say anything about the male lead? No it calls me out and says:


--- Quote ---Are you incapable of enjoying media where none of the major characters are exactly like you when it comes to certain immutable characterstics?
--- End quote ---

And then I explained why most people are, in fact, exactly this way, based on real market research. I am shifting no goalposts. I stand by my original sarcastic post. This show got cancelled because the show runners have no clue who their audience is, and don't care in the slightest. Their take what we give you approach put them all out of a job. We work for the audience, not the other way around.

I'll dial back the patronizing attitude. I was probably reading too much into your rebuttals, and I apologize for that.

--- End quote ---
I appreciate that. This board can get tiresome with the combination of sycophancy and random escalation, so it's nice to see someone willing to dial it down a bit.

The male lead ran counter to your initial assertion, and it's part of the basic premise. It created an apparent contradiction, before I said anything.

I do think you're taking too narrow a view of marketing. You seem to have the marketing careerist view. Which is generally the most effective approach, from an ongoing ROI standpoint. And that's important for people in your position, who are trying to make a career of it, because you need stable cash flow with an opportunity for growth. But I've had a fair amount of experience working with startups that are trying to break the mold. Most fail, but the ones that succeed change the baseline expectations. Both Netflix and Amazon seem to be following that pattern (from what I've read, they almost sounded like they were playing in-house venture capitalists), and fairly successfully. Look at how they've dominated the awards shows. This isn't necessarily the same as audience size; it's pretty clear both are awash in money and trying to build their reputation, rather than struggling for every penny. But they've also had some genuine hits. That's why I think Y could have succeeded, if it was done well enough.

I think the essential problem isn't the lack of checked boxes, but the lack of anything that would appeal. I'm going to refer to that speech the new president gave again -- it was dismal, dispiriting, and disjointed. That's a more fundamental problem than a lack of Chris Hemsworth's abs.

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