Main Deader Than Disco Discussion

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10:49:33 AM Mar 2nd 2018
Does Futurama really count? Even if the later seasons are seen as weaker than what came before, the show still seems pretty popular overall on the internet.
11:29:49 AM Mar 2nd 2018
edited by chasemaddigan
It definitely does not count. This trope is not "thing that was once popular but now isn't as popular", it's "this was once popular, but now there's so much backlash people won't ever admit that they ever liked it". Futurama is still well-liked and has not seen a backlash that extreme.
12:26:04 PM Mar 2nd 2018
I agree. Futurama is not an example of Deader than Disco.
02:01:18 PM Mar 2nd 2018
Thirded. The early (pre-movie) seasons are very well-deserved. Not an Example.
10:55:45 PM Nov 21st 2017
edited by Xteme19
I was wondering for the section under video games, can we add pay-to-win microtransactions and loot boxes models in the future because of recent events?
06:48:19 AM Nov 22nd 2017
No. Deader Than Disco is "near-universally popular, then near-universally despised." At no point were pay-to-win microtransactions the hottest new toy on the playground.
01:18:43 PM Aug 22nd 2017
Is Molly Ringwald really that dead of an actress? Apart from the fact her career hasn't done well in the past few years, I know her works aren't as popular as they were then, but she does have some defenders. This trope was removed on her actual YMMV page because of the defender part, and I'd say her feud with John Hughes is more of an Overshadowed By Controversy thing.
01:20:50 PM Aug 22nd 2017
See below for the statement that this trope only applies to works, not individual people.
08:55:39 AM Dec 17th 2017
It got removed anyway, so...
03:49:46 PM Jul 31st 2017
Would politics count for in universe/real life example?

It's pretty common in politics that a candidate or pundit will start off their career as extremely popular only to end up becoming the scrappy, ether because of corruption; scandals; bad policies; circumstances beyond their control or simply because they refuse to follow through on promises (a few famous example off the top of my head being Richard Nixon, Chris Christie & Anthony Wiener)

Also it's the same for celebrities too (I don't see the careers/legacies of Jared Fogel, Jimmy Savile or Bill Cosby making a comeback anytime soon)
07:06:37 PM Jul 31st 2017
This has already been discussed extensively in the cleanup thread and the answer is no. We trope works, not people, and Deader Than Disco is specifically an Audience Reaction to a work or group of works (e.g. a genre).
10:07:36 PM Jul 28th 2017
edited by NikkiLee8208
Should it be mentioned how big of an impact the disco/funk has had on R&B, Dance, Pop, and Hip-Hop in the 21st century? I always find that to be one of the biggest ironies of the "Disco Demolition Night" was that Steve Dahl wanted disco songs to be played less on the radio in favor of Rock songs, but a few decades after his event, the tides turned back again and disco has a much wider circle of influence than Rock does.

All-in-all, the article is short and it would be nice to fit in some of the history of disco in there.
05:05:36 PM Jul 27th 2017
Ultimate Marvel has a long entry, but it is a misleading oneas detailed here. As pointed, many aspects of the MCU were borrowed from the Ultimate inprint, there are many paragraphs detailing all those similarities. And the mainstream comics soon adopted themselves the style of the Ultimate line. The project was eventually cancelled because it became redundant: in 2000, there was no MCU and the mainstream comics were something completely different, so the ultimates became a success for its never seen approach. Nowadays, mainstream comics have the ultimate style (which is not simply "everyone is a jerkass", as suggested here), and Marvel does not need to speculate what would an Avengers film look like, as they can make those films and apply the ideas they wanted to apply back then. That doesn't sound at all like "deader than disco", it basically sounds as the complete opposite.

The text also says that the line was closed with just a minimal miniseries. That is a complete lie. The line was closed with a whole Crisis Crossover ending that followed a years long storyline, the highest spectacle comic book industry can provide. That was, after all, the whole purpose of the Secret Wars crossover. If the ultimate line was so reviled as suggested, it wouldn't have got any of this, it would have been silently cancelled and the rest of the comic book line would have been unaffected. Those crossovers are also the highest selling point of the year (to the point that, for the comic book industry, everything else is just filler between a crossover and the next one), and they wouldn't have risked it by giving a prominent role to some reviled content.
08:33:09 PM Jul 27th 2017
I would consider bringing it up in the DTD cleanup thread.

I was suspicious of the Ultimate Marvel entry when we first discussed it there some time ago.
12:14:43 AM Jun 25th 2017
Also would spoony count for web videos?
08:15:14 PM Jun 24th 2017
(Note I'm not an expert historan) Does former President Richard M Nixon for a real life example?

Started his career as a fairly popular California governor before becoming President Eisenhower's VP, wins the nomination to become the Republican Party candidate in 1960 (loses to JFK), gets his political 2nd wind by winning the presidential election in 1968 (winning this and his 72 reelection by electoral landslides), everything was looking up for tricky dick until watergate

Post watergate scandal, his public image was tarnished being seen as a crook and mad with power

And history hasn't been to kind to him ether, nowadays when anyone brings Nixon up it's usually as a negative comparison or mockery (like in Futurama or the Simpsons)
10:12:27 AM Jun 30th 2017
I think he was on here before and then removed for some reason.

I think he counts, because he WAS quite popular during his time and he IS now universally reviled, except by some "revisionist" historians who point out his positive sides (which exist, but are rarely talked about)
10:19:35 AM Jun 30th 2017
Take it to the cleanup thread.
05:00:16 PM Jun 24th 2017
Should the standard for "deader than disco" actually be based on whether or not said series started universally loved? Because a lot of good examples (especially with movies) started as diverse at best but financially gang busters for a short while before becoming universally hated and/or financial poison

I'm just wondering because the twilight series to fit this trope with the only reason stopping it from being added is because it was never universally loved
01:10:54 AM Apr 29th 2017
I changed the rock, disco, and hip-hop redirects to specifically point to the music subpage, at least while it still exists. Those genres are covered there and not on the main DTD page, so people clicking on any links to them that weren't changed after the cleanup are probably looking for the information on that page.
04:25:38 AM Feb 22nd 2017
The description should change. This trope is clearly not a polar oposite of Vindicated By History, since that trope simply means something relatively unpopular becoming more popular later on, not something extremely hated and well-known becoming extremely popular.
06:15:40 AM Feb 22nd 2017
Fair point. Deleted the whole line; a trope description should begin by defining the trope, not comparing it to other tropes.
03:25:02 AM Feb 14th 2017
edited by JustaUsername
Would Twilight count? The popularity seems to have disolved with fans either moving to other Young Adult Literature fandoms like The Hunger Games or have gotten older and not cared for the Unfortunate Implications lurking in the books. Even mockery of the books seem to have been something disappeared.

However, I feel there might be some Twihards lurking around so the fanbase might just have become silenter...
08:09:41 AM Feb 14th 2017
It was discussed on the cleanup thread; a consensus was reached that it doesn't count. Deader Than Disco is "near-universally loved, then subject to a retroactive and near-universal backlash." Twilight was never universally loved; its Hate Dom sprang up nearly concurrently with its fandom. Nor was the backlash against it universal; it still has its fans, and more just moved on and forgot about it as opposed to actually turning against it.
10:03:12 PM Jul 28th 2017
So disco itself doesn't even count for this trope? Since it was never "near-universally loved"?
09:32:25 AM Jan 17th 2017
edited by Sakubara
While Oreimo does kind of belong there , there's one rather detail many like me would disagree with the fact that it spawned the Little Sister Heroine genre since there are several examples like Sister Princess, Aki Sora, and many others that predate the genre by several years and was more than just "the little sister is one of many options". If it meant to say "made it even more popular" fair enough, but the wording and the linked article implies it's solely Oreimo's fault for incest-themed anime. Not to mention to how the section is somewhat biased since the word "utterly creepy" implies "universally agreed upon". It's starting to sound like a case of the author using the section to rant about the show than to talk about how it's this trope.

Note: I'm half kidding with the last one ,but the point still stands. Kind of doesn't help that the article it was linked to was extremely anti-Moe in general...using rather questionable evidence and how again this trend LONG predates Oreimo
12:13:00 PM Jun 30th 2017
Yes, Oreimo did not create this genre, you're right. But Ending Aversion in it was the starting point for everyone's growing hatred for this genre, especially along with all the more forwarding of the anime to tastes of otaku. Not surprisingly, one of the most famous works in the genre is the main target for his haters.

06:12:21 PM Jan 7th 2017
Would Feminist Frequency count? Anita was popular when she first started the series, getting onto Stephen Colbert's show and being invited to talk about her opinions. Then the backlash against her numerous research mistakes, plagiarised YouTube footage and strange opinions in general came. You see thousands of videos from users criticising her and calling her out for her mistakes, and she has announced that she's ending the series. You see more critics than fans of it these days.
06:35:45 PM Jan 7th 2017
I would not say it counts. Among others because while there is a very vocal backlash against her, it is almost entirely ideologically/politically motivated and she still has a fair share of supporters/defender, even though some or all of them may ideologically/politically motivated themselves. It certainly is not only ever mentioned to mock it.
07:17:14 PM Jan 7th 2017
I don't think it counts. Anita Sarkeesian had a lot of detractors since the beginning and people were already making videos pointing out her research errors not long after the first part of her series was uploaded.
09:12:11 AM Jan 8th 2017
edited by HighCrate
I've got no love for Feminist Frequency, but Deader Than Disco is "universally beloved, then universally and retroactively reviled." You'd have to really stretch to claim that FF was ever "universally" beloved; its fanbase is drawn from a relatively narrow segment of Internet-based feminist orthodoxy (even if it briefly got some mainstream attention outside that bubble), and the backlash against it was immediate, not retroactive.

So yeah. Chiming in for a cut.
08:51:17 AM Jan 9th 2017
Yeah, cut. There was waaaaaaaaaaaay too much backlash even at the height of its popularity; really if anything there are probably fewer detractors now.
12:06:49 PM Jan 9th 2017
I will say that the TONE of the detractors has changed, from receiving reflexive hate from the sort of people who are always going to hate anything with the word "feminist" in the name, to a more nuanced criticism from the sort of people who are fine with feminism in general but aren't fans of this particular brand of attention-grabby, poorly-researched feminism.

Still Not an Example though.
07:51:09 PM Dec 12th 2016
Considering I'm beginning to see DtD as Hype Backlash But More, maybe the concept could work better as a Darth Wiki page?
01:43:39 PM Jun 8th 2016
05:12:35 AM Nov 21st 2015
edited by lledsmar
Do you think that the anti Disney movement is waning?

All started after Walt's death, gain momentum during the 90's (anti corporate sentiment and the now debunked Hollywood's Dark Prince book) and gotten old and stale afterwards (jokes and rants about Walt, the movies,etc). There are still anti-fans (academia, celebrities like Meryl Streep, True Art artists, etc), but Disney isn't going away anytime soon.
05:22:29 AM Nov 21st 2015
edited by lledsmar
Even the pro Disney people of now (outside of film historians, the studio and fandom) are mainly Boomers who grew up watching Walt on TV in the 50's and 60's.

As a Millennial Disney fan, I'm tired of this ideological war.
06:10:48 AM Mar 31st 2015
I think the Live Action Television and Film sections really need to be cleaned up. There appear to be too many examples that fall more under "fallen out of the cultural spotlight" (which tends to happen with just about every form of media at some point) than "deader than disco" (where a work not only falls out of the limelight but is looked down on for a reason other than Hype Backlash). Unfortunately, I don't really know much about a lot of the entries on these lists, so could somebody perhaps run through them and trim the examples that violate the basic guidelines for this trope?
12:54:52 AM Jan 7th 2015
edited by
Why is K-ON on here? It's certainly no where near Deader than Disco. It's still a popular anime in Japan and the West. In fact just last month Japan voted for the top 20 anime they wanted to see back on TV.

K-ON came at #5, beating Attack on Titan that came at #19.

I can provide a link to the list, if it's required.

Also the entry in question claimed that K-ON college and K-ON Highschool were failed attempts at continuing the series. But they were always just intended to be one-shot mangas.

There's also the fact that K-ON merch is still selling well in its homeland.

10:13:07 PM Sep 27th 2014
edited by
Hey i have a question about the Ben 10 franchise current state with omniverse is it considered deader than disco or Seinfeld is unfunny?
07:48:01 AM Sep 27th 2014
Hey,Is it all right if Power rangers and Archie comics are going to be part of Seinfeld is unfunny and Deader than disco tropes most never mention about them except some .
09:56:56 AM Sep 27th 2014
Power Rangers isn't deader than disco! It's still very much celebrated by Gen Yers/Millenials.
10:17:45 AM Sep 27th 2014
edited by
Okay but what about Archie comics?
11:02:05 AM Sep 27th 2014
I doubt it can be deader than disco when it's still... running. Franchise Zombie at worst, but that's just not really possible.
10:12:06 PM Sep 27th 2014
So does that mean that Archie comics maybe either Deader than,Seinfeld is unfunny or as you said Deader than disco?
02:19:00 AM Sep 28th 2014
No, Larkmarn said that it's not Deader Than Disco.
05:55:38 AM Sep 28th 2014
oh so does that mean that Archie comics is considered Seinfeld is unfunny or Franchise zombie
12:14:22 PM Sep 28th 2014
How and why should Archie Comics fit these tropes? "most never mention about them except some . " is not what either trope is about.
09:41:01 AM Sep 29th 2014
Well its just most popular cultures never mention about Archie comics except some also it may be the oldest comic book company during the 40's but unlike the 'BIG' leagues like Marvel and DC.
11:15:27 PM Apr 29th 2014
edited by
Are we sure that My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic deserves to be on this list? From what I'm seeing, the show is more popular it has ever been.

I say this because of some things I've seen, most notably 1) The show's ratings are the best it's ever been, considering Hasbro once said Crystal Empire(season 3, episode 1) was the most seen FIM episode at the time, and many episodes in season 4 have since surpassed it in viewership, with the season 4 premiere "Princess Twilight Sparkle" setting a new viewership record and some episodes coming close to surpassing it within season 4 alone. Five episodes in season 4 are the top five most seen FIM episodes of all time, and 2) In terms of business, FIM has only gotten bigger. Hasbro has been saying that in terms of purely much money the series is making, FIM is only having them make more money, with the toys being purchased at a higher rate than before.

I can provide sources if I need to.

I'm just not sure that, with those considered, that FIM is less popular than it used to be. If anything, what I'm reading suggests that it's more popular than ever before.
11:25:53 PM Apr 29th 2014
That entry is massive misuse in the trope writeup for starters. Kill it.
11:29:55 PM Apr 29th 2014
Done and done.
02:17:10 PM May 3rd 2013
The Rugrats entry at the bottom of the page is a massive wall of text. I'd trim it myself, but I know absolutely nothing about the series or its history.
09:52:52 PM Jan 8th 2013
Does anybody feel that that disco entry itself under the music subpage could be trimmed? The trope is "Deader than Disco" and describes when something reaches massive popularity followed by a massive public backlash, but the entry for disco itself reads like it was written by a Disco Dan who is more interested in arguing that disco isn't dead and only fell out of the mainstream because of racism and homophobia. It's just a little too editorialized.
08:36:09 PM Feb 17th 2013
Really? i dont see what you see in it. can you give bits from the disco section that proves your point?
01:01:17 PM Jul 27th 2012
It's been a while, but I have a memory like a steel parrot, and I distinctly remember the quote being "Aunt Didi, what's "discobe?" "Disco is something that happened a long long time ago and it's never ever coming back."
10:12:17 AM May 24th 2012
Is the old Doctor Who "pulp"? I'm looking up the term, and it seems to refer to prose fiction. And even if it was, did it remain that way until the initial cancellation?
03:03:20 PM Nov 10th 2011

  • Traditional Westerns were once a very viable genre, but are now derided for a combination of perceived lack of originality (there really aren't that many plot elements that distinguish the genre, after all), perceived glamorization of Manifest Destiny and the "displacement" of the American Indians, and their association with the king of Values Dissonance, the inimitable Jerkass Stu of John Wayne. There's a reason why some of the most fondly remembered works in the genre are the deconstructions of it. Audience burnout started as early as The '50s * , and then the cultural shift of The '60s caused more people to question the underlying themes of the genre, leading to the popularity of the aforementioned deconstructions. The finishing blow was the 1980 flop of Heaven's Gate, which caused Hollywood to avoid the genre like the plague to this day — even such successful modern-day efforts as Silverado, Unforgiven and Tombstone haven't resurrected the genre* . Oddly enough, Westerns are still popular outside of the very country they're based on, though this adoration is just as likely to be based on kitsch as straight.
    • Not to mention the heaping helpings of Ho Yay. Brokeback Mountain was really just the first openly gay cowboy (or bisexual sheep herder) movie...
    • Notably, John Wayne himself is not Deader Than Disco, despite his literal passing and the aforementioned Values Dissonance — he remains one of the most beloved and iconic stars in Hollywood history, even as many of his most popular contemporaries have fallen into total obscurity.
    • The Western genre in movies always had its ups and downs and was kept being reinvented. As early as the 1930s it was regarded as dying until it was suddenly revived by Stagecoach, which broke many of the genre conventions of the time.
    • The Western may been coming back, albeit in reinvented form, with films like the True Grit remake and Django Unchained.

Westerns are released by major studios every year. The genre was never dead, much less deader than disco.
06:44:03 AM Jul 20th 2011
  • B movies in general, regardless of genre. Because most of us can't go to the movies anymore on less than half a paycheck, studios themselves have decided that the only way to attract audience dollars is to spend exorbitant amounts of money on making their films. What isn't widely known that the portion of the budget spent solely to hype and promote the film could actually be used to make several films. Big name stars (many of whom are actors in name only), big production values, armies of CGI SPFX engineers, big name writers and directors means big bucks. In addition, many of the second-run "grindhouse" theaters that were most likely to play such movies have shut down as a result of competition from multiplexes. No more cheap but fun schlockfests from the likes of Menahem Golan, Roger Corman, or Troma, at least not in theaters.
    • The inferior remakes of a lot of classic low budget movies cost over one hundred times the budget of the original. Make of that what you will.
    • B movies may no longer be in theaters, but they're still making them. More than ever, in fact. They just go direct-to-video now or wind up on the Syfy Channel.
    • The Asylum is still pumping out B movies, but only if they're based on movies that already exist.

Uhh, what. Can someone explain this (especially the first paragraph about "big bucks" and "half a paycheck") in proper English?
07:39:51 AM Mar 29th 2011
Am I missing something here? Has there ever been a massive backlash against the Muppets? Why do people keep adding them back in when I remove them?

Yes, the Muppets have kind of fallen into obscurity. But this trope is for stuff that's become a joke. In the past, people laughed WITH this stuff, and now they laugh AT it. I don't think this fits the Muppets at all.

When have the Muppets received the kind of Hatedom that Disco did, or that Twilight does now, or that old boy bands did? I don't recall that.

Just not being as well-known and recognizable as they used to be doesn't qualify for Deader Than Disco. In fact, I'm tempted to say that's a different trope altogether.
04:48:20 AM Feb 14th 2011
If a video game gets good reviews when it comes up, but the majority of the retrospective reviews are negative, does this qualify for this trope?
09:21:54 AM Feb 14th 2011
I don't think so. It would only count as this trope if it was the game to have for a brief period, and then afterward the people who played it are embarrassed to have it on their shelves.
10:29:35 PM Mar 12th 2012
The trope you are looking for is Critical Dissonance.
06:58:16 AM Jan 12th 2011
Why is the new media entry constantly having people removing my edits?
07:08:00 AM Jan 12th 2011
Because you're calling something Deader Than Disco that has 500 million users and is still a very, very, very widely used site. Read the page description. It says that something qualifies as this if nobody uses it anymore and they're embarrassed to admit they used it.

It does not mean "A couple sites in the UK sprung up that kinda do the same thing."
03:29:21 AM Dec 3rd 2010
Are my eyes tricking me? Or did someone delete the Literature section?
11:40:18 PM Nov 5th 2010
edited by AnonymousCat

because it's actually an example of Cyclic Trope, and:

  • Adventure games never really survived the switch to 3D. While older adventure titles like Monkey Island, Full Throttle, and the Myst games still have cult followings, the genre was largely displaced by more action-oriented titles and by Role-Playing Games. The downfall of Sierra only confirms this. However, there has recently been a revival of the genre on the Nintendo DS (the Ace Attorney games, Hotel Dusk: Room 215, Trace Memory), in the form of Flash games, and most recently through the download-network friendly releases of Telltale Games, who've breathed life into revivals of Sam and Max and Monkey Island, as well as licensed games based on Homestar Runner and Wallace and Gromit. If this trend continues, then they may wind up being moved to Popularity Polynomial.
    • In Europe, especially in Germany, Adventures have seen a revival for quite some time. Examples: The Runaway series, Whispered World, Ankh, Jack Keane, Geheimakte Tunguska, Edna bricht aus, Machinarium, Broken Sword series
      • Many Adventure conventions are likely responsible, while some adventure games were fairly procedural and could be solved by a mixture of common sense and following instructions, others were constructed of perfectly legitimate puzzles and some like Monkey Island operated on making fun of absurd conventions that doesn't change the fact that the genre was ripe with absurd conventions more than anything else. If there's one argument leveled against this dead genre more than any other it's that these games are generally only solvable by using every item you have on everything in the world until something happens, for instance to recharge the wand in King's Quest V you need to fuel the recharger with a slice of cheese. So too many times you had two choices, endure countless hours of brutal trial and error or shill out for a "hint book" (players guide) and finish the expensive game you bought in an hour. In a post Deus Ex world things have thankfully shifted away from forcing the player to find a single sanctioned arbitrary root and more towards letting the player resolve situations the way he wants to and thus the adventure genre bites the dust.

because it seems to be just an example of a genre falling into relative obscurity (and possibly coming back).
11:17:10 AM Sep 24th 2010
edited by WiseBass
EDIT: Nevermind.
09:13:23 PM Aug 25th 2010
edited by TheRedRedKroovy
Deleted the entry on hip-hop/rap, for the same reason given by others above me for deleting examples — it simply hasn't been hit with the massive backlash necessary for this trope. If it was really Deader Than Disco, then not only would most of us hate modern rap, but we'd remember the great rappers of The '80s and The '90s — Run-DMC, the Beastie Boys, Public Enemy, Biggie, 2pac, the guys from N.W.A. — the same way that we remember, say, MC Hammer or Vanilla Ice. That, or we'd have forgotten about them like most of the "new jack swing" artists of the early '90s. But we don't, so while "traditional" rap music may be dead in terms of mass appeal, it's still fondly remembered. It's like saying that "traditional" Rock & Roll from the '50s (Elvis, Little Richard) is Deader Than Disco because it doesn't have mass appeal anymore and everybody listens to metal or punk. It seems to me that this was more complaining about changing trends in rap than anything else.

Also thinking about cutting the entries on Ally McBeal and This Life. The former even admits that it never went from all-popular to all-hated, and that it simply faded into obscurity. Should I?
03:23:15 PM Mar 7th 2010
Crazyrabbits: Cut the following:

  • Similarly, many manufactured bands and Idol Singers (The Monkees, the Spice Girls, the Backstreet Boys, Britney Spears) go through this. Critics hated them even at their peak, but there were hordes of people willing to appear on TV at their concerts, and now will deny ever being there. This usually extends to their movies as well (anyone willing to admit they liked Spice World? Anyone?). Many people expect Hannah Montana and The Jonas Brothers to suffer this fate rather swiftly.

This is way too generalized. While it is true that there are many bands and one-hit wonders that faded from the limelight, this certainly isn't the case with other artists (see Justin Timberlake, Britney Spears). Just because a band didn't have the same popularity as they did when they released their biggest hit, doesn't mean they've become a joke. Some break up, and some don't bother to replicate their earlier success. If you can rewrite this in a way that acknowledges the most severe instances of this entry, feel free to post it back up. Otherwise, I think it's much too simplified and backhanded to count.

  • Anyone in Britain remember mid-2000s stadium retro-rockers The Darkness? In 2004, they were preposterously huge. They won several Brit awards and seemed unstoppable; the video for "Love is Only a Feeling" never seemed to be off the music-based TV channels. Then, in late 2005 their follow-up album arrived in the shops and sold abysmally and the band fell-apart shortly afterwards. Now almost nobody has a good word to say about them and the received wisdom is that the whole period was some kind of collective madness. This troper's theory is that they were widely marketed as, and perceived as, a tongue-in-cheek parody of '80s hair-rock and whilst there was a lot of humour about them and what they did, they took their music perfectly seriously and made the mistake of thinking the irony-loving British public saw things the same way. Turns out they didn't...

Aside from the natter, The Darkness broke up because the lead singer (Justin Hawkins) hit drugs hard. He eventually left the band of his own volition. While their second album didn't sell as well as their first, it was still a massive success (platinum vs. the first album's five-time platinum status). You're suggesting a theory that holds no water, and has no factual basis outside your own words. Hell, even as a parody of glam rock, they were still quite good.
09:58:23 AM Mar 9th 2010
Yeah, I thought they were quite good too. But the point is that they were HUGE in 2004 and everyone was pretending they'd never liked them a mere two years later. What summed it up perfectly for me was an article about the Brit awards recently that mentioned "inexplicable" or "ridiculous" awards and mentioned The Darkness's sweep in 2004 putting the whole thing down to some kind of collective madness (despite the fact that the newspaper whose website said article appeared on pushed them as hard as everyone else in 2003-2004). They're a perfect example of this trope - that's not a judgement on the band, it's an example of how fickle, not to mention dishonest, public opinion can be.

Also, whilst "One Way Ticket..." wasn't the disastrous flop popular opinion makes it out to be, it sold way less than the debut (which sold over a million copies in the UK alone) and only reached No. 11 in the album charts. For a new band, it would have been a successful album but for a band as huge as The Darkness it was a doubtless disappointment.

I'm going to put them back in (although I'll take your point about the natter, I'm prone to it alas).
03:10:18 PM Mar 10th 2010
Fair enough.
07:05:19 AM Mar 7th 2010
Random Troper: This trope has been suffering from Flanderization in recent months, so I think it's best that we discuss just what the trope is about.

First off, this trope isn't merely about things that aren't as popular as they once were. This trope is about things that have gone beyond simply being 'not as popular' and have fallen so far from popularity that people are embarassed to admit they were into them. The 'fad' or whatever has become a joke — these things might be revived as 'kitsch' but in many cases they just aren't ever going to be popular on their own merits again. It's like a sort of Hype Backlash or something that continues long after those who liked the stuff have gone into hiding.

Here are a few things that ARE Deader Than Disco, or at least heading in that direction:

  • Disco itself, of course, is probably never going to be taken seriously again (was it ever?)
  • Many 'manufactured' pop bands like the Spice Girls and such. You used to hear about them ALL the time — you just couldn't escape from them. Now, good luck trying to find people who'll admit to being at their concerts.
  • Daytime soap operas - these days considered something you compare really bad writing to. If they're not there already, they will be soon (given cancellations of Long Runners such as Guiding Light).
  • The Ultimate Warrior — he's more or less a joke these days, and likely to remain so. His nonsensical, egotistical, and occasionally homophobic rantings have made him an embarassment.
  • The whole professional wrestling genre has lately seemed to be declining to the point where people are embarrased to admit they watch wrestling (and those that do do so only to talk about how badly done the angles and such are). But wrestling's one of those cases where this trope isn't necessarily permanent. It's managed to make comebacks before.

Okay, so those things DO fit the trope. Now here are two or three examples that DON'T fit, but were seen on the page anyway. While there's no denying they're nowhere near as popular as they were in their day, they haven't reached the point where people are embarassed to admit they were fans of them.

  • Looney Tunes — The 90's and afterward haven't been kind to the Looney Tunes. Tiny Toon Adventures, featuring the classic characters in supporting roles as the faculty of Acme Looniversity, was good. But after that, they entered a Dork Age where Bugs Bunny's commercials with Michael Jordan resulted in the film Space Jam. Then came Loonatics Unleashed, a sci-fi superhero series featuring sci-fi superhero descendants of the classic Looney Tunes characters which was poorly received by fans of the classic characters. Looney Tunes: Back in Action was an okay pastiche, though it's clear that the glory days of Looney Tunes are behind them. But the characters still have a lot of fans who believe that the classic cartoons still hold up very well today comedy-wise, so the Looney Tunes are not this trope.

  • The Muppets - They've struggled to remain relevant in the years following the death of Jim Henson. But they've had some successes here and there, and while they'll probably never again be as popular as they used to be, there are still plenty of Muppet fans out there who aren't embarrased to admit it.

  • Interactive Fiction — I haven't actually seen text-based Interactive Fiction on the Deader Than Disco page, but it wouldn't surprise me since the mainstream computer marketers have considered it to be so since the end of the 80's. Granted, 90 percent of non-Infocom text adventures were, in fact, pretty lousy, but the Infocom text adventures (and the 10 percent of non-Infocom text adventures that were actually pretty good) still have their fans. And since the 90's, there are a lot of people who have written new text adventures in languages such as Inform, TADS, and so forth — meaning that the genre as a whole still has plenty of unashamed fans.

So, in closing, before adding an entry to the Deader Than Disco page, one has to ask 'Has this thing become a joke and/or an embarassment to most people?'. If it has, then it's Deader Than Disco. If not, then it's not this trope.

Really, there should be some other tropes about a thing's popularity, so there can be a Sliding Scale of Popularity or something like that. Deader Than Disco would be when a thing's popularity hits rock bottom.
04:49:14 AM Jun 18th 2010
edited by
Actually, the more that I think about it, Deader Than Disco is to fads and popular things what Dead Horse Trope is to tropes. It happens when something falls so far from popularity that most people consider it a joke.

But the key thing is, it's not forgotten. If something falls so far from popularity that it's not even the subject of jokes anymore and isn't really talked about at all, then it's another trope entirely. It's become the fad/popular thing equivalent of a Forgotten Trope.
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