I got into xkcd years ago, back when it was probably on strip two hundred something. What it was then was slightly surreal and a refreshing touch of "hey remember those wierd things you used to do?" Years later, what more has really been done? Maybe it has gotten more openly bitter about liberal arts and maybe had a few strips where the author thought he could make people aware of stuff. Mostly though, it feels like I've read the same 4 strips two hundred times a piece. Mostly though it's the same old stuff only now it's wrapped up in the pretension of being "Genius Bonus" Science jokes while at the same time trying to appeal to a large audience. This means that really most of his jokes end up referencing 11th or 12th grade science and doing some cheap word play or clearly misunderstanding them. I'm a "liberal arts major" and honestly, I get most of his jokes, the ones I miss seem like something that can be thought of after skimming over a wiki page. There's no genuine wierdness or inspiration to them and so they get stale pretty quickly. xkcd has been trapped between being the "Science" comic and appealling to a large audience [mostly of geeks granted] which limits anything really interesting that can be done with jokes. It's like referncing Plato's Cave or Schrodinger's Cat; It's a small part of a field that people who don't know what they are talking about cling to. So it's turned to mentioning something you learnt in 11th grade and expecting you to be impressed or else just saying "Hey! I do wierd things too! Listen to me!". With that in mind, even the old jokes seem more trite. He hit a niche before anyone else was willing to exploit it so directly: Pandering directly to nerd nostalgia that isn't based on brands. Which was nice for me until I saw what was happening. Now it just feels like he could say any wierd thought he's had and people who have had it will give a standing ovation. It feels sort of trapped in that stage we all had once where we'd say anything to fit in, without necessarily understanding it; "Hey Physics Majors! I hate Liberal Arts too!" or "Hey Internet! Isn't 4chan craaaaaaazy?" Once you scratch past the surface, xkcd has nothing wierd and nothing interesting. Just empty stick figures telling you stuff you might recognize and hoping that it will amuse you.
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