The least reflective of the grimdark seems to me to be a little too busy wallowing in splatter and gratuitousness--violence, betrayal, rapine, raping, pillaging, cannibalism, torture...pick three...or four...as if those things were an end to themselves.... That nihilistic view of the world is essentially a juvenile, sociopathic, self-justifying fetish, and most of us eventually grow out of it.... But what some critics ignore is that the best of the current wave of gritty fantasy does not buy into this fallacy.... Instead, it embraces a balance closer to reality: that the world is arbitrary and unfair, and that sometimes even well-meaning people do awful things: desperate, vicious things. But also, that complete jerks, sociopathic monsters, can and do accomplish good--sometimes purposefully, sometimes not. People are not good or bad, but people. The best gritty fantasy reflects this, considers it, attempts not to spin a morality play but describe a complicated and ambiguous arc of people doing what they feel they have do to.Like.
Friday, March 29, 2013
One more thing (about grit)...
An addendum to my previous post. Here are a few words from Elizabeth Bear: