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View Full Version : Who likes incredibly sad stories? (informal poll)



enderlord99
2012-02-02, 06:17 PM
Seriously. Who?
















This doesn't have a secret agenda. Nope. None at all.

Flame of Anor
2012-02-02, 06:29 PM
I do, when they're sad in a meaningful way. Like the story of Turin, or the sad parts in Serenity, etc.

Pokonic
2012-02-02, 06:31 PM
Only when there is meaning behined it. As in, no kittens being accedently roasted instead of the turky or anything.

Flame of Anor
2012-02-02, 06:35 PM
As in, no kittens being accedently roasted instead of the turky or anything.

:eek: :eek:

Pokonic
2012-02-02, 06:42 PM
:eek: :eek:

My fellow writers in Writing class might have A's, but the means is usualy by making "mature" works. That peice was a joke to see if the teacher even considers what the actual substance of the work is. It got a A, with a little note from the teacher that it was a mature and well-developed paper.

enderlord99
2012-02-02, 06:54 PM
Agh! My plan failed! Apparently "likes really sad stuff" and "likes stuff that tastes like diabeetus" are not mutually exclusive! I mean, someone with a pony avatar even posted in this thread. Nooo!!!!!

Dienekes
2012-02-02, 06:58 PM
I tend to find them funny if there ridiculously pointless (for example I chuckled at the turkey-kitten story above, and Romeo and Juliet, and every piece of melodramatic shlock about spurned lovers). Good schadenfreude is always a welcome find.

But a quality sad story? Sure I can enjoy them, hell my favorite piece of fiction is A Song of Ice and Fire, which seems to be a merry-go-round of characters going through events that would give any sane person a crippling case of depression. But a lot of times, I just nod and say "well that was a bit sad" and go on reading mostly unaffected.

Aotrs Commander
2012-02-02, 06:59 PM
Agh! My plan failed! Apparently "likes really sad stuff" and "likes stuff that tastes like diabeetus" are not mutually exclusive! I mean, someone with a pony avatar even posted in this thread. Nooo!!!!!

You would be surprised how much incredibly sad pony fanfiction is out there, actually. (And I mean, of well-written quality, emotionally sad; not written by "sad" people in the "you have to be a sad person if you're into pony" sense.) It's a thing, in fact.



On the OT, personally, though, I don't, as a general rule; though it depends of your definition of "sad". Generally, I prefer comedy, or at least a happy ending for one side or the other (not necessarily the good guys...)

Pokonic
2012-02-02, 07:10 PM
Agh! My plan failed! Apparently "likes really sad stuff" and "likes stuff that tastes like diabeetus" are not mutually exclusive! I mean, someone with a pony avatar even posted in this thread. Nooo!!!!!

Please, there sad things within this bloody fandom. For fear of ruining your keybord with tears, I will refrain from linking you to them. :smalltongue:

Icewalker
2012-02-02, 08:17 PM
Sad stories? Certainly. I'm not well read in general, but in my experience for some of the best really really sad tales you've got to look to old French authors, books like Hunchback of Notre Dame and Les Misérables.

...or maybe it's just Victor Hugo.

Das Platyvark
2012-02-02, 11:43 PM
For me, one of the saddest things I've read is Chicken with Plums, by Marjane Satrapi. The main character dies in the first chapter, and the rest of the book is the events leading up to this point. That's really what makes tragedy tragic-when the sorrow is inexorably approaching, with the weight of the rest of the story behind it.

erikun
2012-02-03, 12:26 AM
Simply Rarity (https://docs.google.com/document/d/1qdXe1LEcR6_s3JeA4hmVoeDMUACDjjz9VbU67F8ru_k/edit?hl=en_US), if you thought that cute and sad shall never cross.
EqD link (http://www.equestriadaily.com/2011/06/story-simply-rarity.html) in case the former stops working for whatever reason.

And I enjoy all kinds of stories; it's mainly how well they are written, and how well they evoke emotions, that decide how much I like them. I've enjoyed stories with considerably silly plots but are still possess quality writing and meaningful characters, just as I've disliked stories with supposedly interesting characters on epic quests that just turned out to be full of mediocrity.

Hands_Of_Blue
2012-02-03, 12:43 AM
Sure. Who wouldn't enjoy a nice tear jerker every now and then?

http://i59.photobucket.com/albums/g314/Elijah_Baley/cosgroveUP.jpg

Artemis97
2012-02-03, 09:00 AM
I enjoy a good sad story. In fact, this bleeds into my writing quite a bit and have been accused of torturing my characters. But really, what is a plot without conflict? How believeable is a tale where everything is sunshine and roses?

Dusk Eclipse
2012-02-03, 10:39 AM
I enjoy a good sad story. In fact, this bleeds into my writing quite a bit and have been accused of torturing my characters. But really, what is a plot without conflict? How believeable is a tale where everything is sunshine and roses?

I agree with you to a point, every story needs conflict; but in my experience most "sad stories" are just sad for the sake of being sad, no real reason just bad stuff happening to the main character and when everything seems to go right BAM something even more awful happens.... I am sure there is a trope for this.

Artemis97
2012-02-05, 01:32 AM
Well, that's just bad writing, if you ask me.

On the other hand, not every bad thing needs a reason. Sad things happen to people all the time with little explanation, but I have a feeling that's not the sort of sad things you're talking about.

I'd search TV Tropes, but I'd run the risk of never coming back, and that would be a real tragedy.

Dusk Eclipse
2012-02-05, 02:42 PM
Yep bad writing; but that is what you risk when you browse FF.net :smalltongue:

And I think an example would be better to explain myself, in one Naruto fanfiction he was adopted into the Sarutobi Clan and then mid-through the story the author decided to kill all the clan just because things were too good for Naruto, that is the kind of "sad" story I can't stand.

Coidzor
2012-02-05, 02:46 PM
^: Is that even sad at that point? Doesn't it just become tawdry gore?

What is incredibly sad versus simply sad?

I must admit, I'm not a fan of stories that are downers the whole way through, but I've not really blanched at sad parts unless they were cliche, trite, or overwrought.

Cazaril
2012-02-06, 02:29 PM
Mm, it depends. I love Shakespeare's tragedies (in which everyone dies), but I hated The Grapes of Wrath (in which everyone dies). And I enjoy Song of Ice and Fire, in which terrible things happen to good people every other page.

I suppose that I like sad stories when there's something to them other than just a sad story. They need to have comic relief, or at least instances of happy things sprinkled in among the waves of crushing depression. If it's just sad, then no.

Candle Jack
2012-02-06, 02:40 PM
I do like stories that have an element of sadness to them. I empathise the most with heroes who are outcasts or who have suffered some terrible loss. I like endings that are superficially happy but carry with them sense of sacrifice — the price of victory was a heavy one.

Do I like stories that are purely sad? Sure, but in small doses. I couldn't watch Grave of the Fireflies every week.

hamishspence
2012-02-06, 02:51 PM
I do like stories that have an element of sadness to them. I empathise the most with heroes who are outcasts or who have suffered some terrible loss. I like endings that are superficially happy but carry with them sense of sacrifice — the price of victory was a heavy one.

I tend to agree- Mercedes Lackey novels sometimes have an element of this.

Especially her Heralds of Valdemar novel Brightly Burning.

Dr.Epic
2012-02-06, 04:01 PM
Really, it depends on the story and the presentation. Here are several stories that have depressing endings that are regarded as masterpieces:

-Frankenstein
-Star Wars The Empire Strikes Back
-Hamlet
-Romeo & Juliet
-MacBeth
-the rest of Shakespeare's plays
-most of Edgar Allan Poe's stories
-most of H.P. Lovecraft's stories

Serpentine
2012-02-06, 04:41 PM
Not really. I read and watch movies for escapism, and I want to see a happy ending - although bittersweet is also acceptable. However, I can certainly appreciate and/or enjoy a well-crafted story with a sad ending, or even where the whole thing is sad (though maybe not so much the latter).
I'm not sure what it takes for me to like a sad story. Unrelenting depressiveness is probably a point against it - Grave of the Fireflies, for example, is an amazing movie, but I never want to watch it again and ultimately I didn't enjoy it at all. I think an ironically sad ending can be a point for it for me - a lot of Stephen King, say. I'm undecided on sort of "surprise sad endings" that come right at the end for not much of an apparent reason. I can't really give an example of that without spoilering it... I'll stick it here, anyway:An Australian movie called Japanese Story.I think something like that I'd have to see a second time to see if it works.

I think tragic - particularly of the Shakesperian type - can be excellent, as can poignancy; the latter I think works particularly well in short stories. The sci-fi anthology I always bring up here, World Zero Minus, has a few stories along those lines, and it's one of my favourite books.


Buuuut, for the most part... I'd rather see a movie with a happy ending than one with a sad one.

DomaDoma
2012-02-06, 04:59 PM
If a story is incredibly sad, it should have a better insight to bring to the table than, say, "don't stick with your abusive mate" or "war is hell". Pan's Labyrinth would be a good example. (It's also about the only example of leave-it-up-to-the-viewer ambiguity - not about the existence of the magic, because that's clearly real, but things like Mercedes' background and the faun's final appearance - anyway, it's the only example I can think of that actually works and doesn't come off as lazy pretentiousness. I love that movie.)

Anyway, if the unhappiness is a logical consequence of the action, I will accept it wholeheartedly. (Unless it's GRRM. That man may craft a world better than anyone, but professional torturers could benefit from his instruction.)

As far as general opinion, it's concerning enough that an unhappy story is seen as inherently better by academics, but I have met young people who treat depressing stories like emotional Warheads candies. (In reference to Grave of the Fireflies: "Come on, why don't you want a gut punch to the soul?")

Mr.Silver
2012-02-06, 05:03 PM
As should probably surprise nobody who's had the misfortune of reading my posts on the subject, I don't exactly have a problem with sad films. I'm a bit leery about the use of term 'incredibly' because that's rather ill-defined, but in regards to sad stories I'd actually say we could maybe stand to do with a few more that had the courage to eschew a happy ending once in a while - some media moreso than others - as Western culture has a bit of a problem when it comes to dealing with sadness.



As far as general opinion, it's concerning enough that an unhappy story is seen as inherently better by academics,
That's actually more a product of the nature of academics and critics in regards to fiction. Sad stories are very definitely in the minority when it comes to fiction so going that route is automatically going to give it novelty points. There's also the fact that most sad stories are found outside of 'genre fiction' - which traditional academics tend not to be very fond of. The fact that it tends not to be escapist also contributes, for pretty much the same reason as above.





but I have met young people who treat depressing stories like emotional Warheads candies. (In reference to Grave of the Fireflies: "Come on, why don't you want a gut punch to the soul?")
Why should this be any more concerning than treating particularly gripping thrillers or terrifying horror the same way? Neither of those provoke emotions that are considered pleasant in everyday life after all yet I can't even remember the last time I saw anyone ask if/why anyone likes scary stories. It seems strange that sad stories should be treated differently, yet in western culture they very frequently are.

DomaDoma
2012-02-06, 06:56 PM
Fear begets adrenaline. That's physiologically understandable. Five-hanky movies with all the usual catharsis replaced by despair don't really produce any desirable hormones.

STsinderman
2012-02-06, 09:10 PM
On the whole I judge the worthyness of a piece by the skill with witch it has been written and executed, and the mood as a secondary concern. Case in point I greatly enjoyed Grave of the Fireflys despite it being very painfully to watch. It can often be the case that if a movie genuinely makes you sad then either you are particularly sensitive to the subject matter or it is by definition a good movie, as it has succeeded in affecting your emotional state.

DomaDoma
2012-02-07, 07:39 PM
Please. I cried at one point during The Zookeeper, even as I realized how trite and cynical the scene was. Pulling heartstrings, in and of itself, doesn't take much more effort than, say, invoking nausea. For what it's worth, when a scene truly affects me, my thought process is usually a shell-shocked "no no no what the hell what no you bastards" until a more quiet moment shows up and then it dawns on me that I'm crying. (Case in point: the second it cut from the death scene to the tabloid headline in that one recent show. DAMN EVERYONE RESPONSIBLE FOR THAT PHONE CALL, SERIOUSLY)

Brother Oni
2012-02-08, 07:19 AM
With regard to Grave of the Fireflies, anybody who finds it depressingly sad is missing the author's point, in my opinion.
I agree that it's hard to watch, but for a different reason (I have to resist the urge to shout at the brother every time he lets his sister down).

I tend not to watch or read intentionally sad fiction, simply because there's plenty of non-fiction that will induce sadness with the fact that there's significant (if not complete) truth in the events adding to the poignancy.

turkishvan2
2012-02-12, 02:21 AM
I love sad stories, as long as it's not a pointless sadness. One of my favorite movies, Winter's Bone, is incredibly depressing, unbearably bleak, makes me cry every time, and I absolutely adore it. I guess because not a lot of things upset me in real life, I have to get my crying through media.

KingofMadCows
2012-02-12, 02:22 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_J5MtYNispY&feature=related

Spacewolf
2012-02-12, 08:22 AM
Yea i like sad storys weirdly the most recent sad thing that got me thinking was a chapter title in a book i had read once before but not realised the implications of the title