The Redemption Narrative

Logically speaking, the value and appeal of a personality/idea should only be a function of how valid/true it is.

But logic has been pretty useless in the long-term history of the human race. We love sentiment, emotions, irrationality, all the whimsical short-term snapshots a particular thing can provide us. We love stories. We love redemption narratives.

This is the usual flow of popular things (The “Dark Knight” Narrative):

Step 1: Elevate someone or something to “hero” status
Step 2: After a while, knock the hero and make him a villain
Step 3: After some more while, set up the once-hero-turned-villain for a redemptive rise.

At first, this flow seems pretty unfair. But maybe the process unconsciously is shit-testing the personality or idea going through the ringer. If it can make it to Step 3, maybe there’s something actually inherently valuable about it. If not, it’s not strong or robust enough to be worth everyone’s time or energy.


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