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Quotes / Magnum Opus Dissonance

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The public is wonderfully tolerant. It forgives everything except genius.

I've made hundreds of legendary records that people talk about that didn't sell.
Jerry Wexler

Readers choose which books and stories they'll care about most and remember best, and if I am remembered only for a novel I wrote in 1984, and not for the better books I wrote after that, I'm not going to complain: Writers are lucky if readers care about and remember any of their works, and a writer is a fool if he criticizes his readers for liking the wrong book.

QT: It usually has to do with one film. I mean, like, you see them growing, or building, or whatever, and they do one film, and usually it's a film that they're very personal about, that they care a lot about, and not only does it not do well, it's not recognized. Okay, now maybe they did a bad job with it, or maybe they did a terrific job with it, all right? But they get nothing for it. They get slapped in the face for it. And you could tell that the film had a real personal feeling to them.
Rose: Yeah. They really had put it out on the table.
QT: They really put it out on the table. And then, from that point on, you can just see all of a sudden they started doing star vehicles.
Charlie Rose, 1996 interview with Quentin Tarantino

There are indeed. And the game that comes most to mind when I say that is Shadow Hearts Covenant... I think it was released alongside a Final Fantasy, and you literally couldn't have timed the thing worse if you wanted to. So yeah, I wish fans could have seen that one. And it got good reviews — everyone said it was great, one magazine said it was the best RPG of the year or something. It was critically acclaimed. It was by a real dark horse Japanese company too, some company called Sacanoth did it. And I know those guys worked their brains off too. This represented so much, it had so much effort. That's the remarkable thing about games — the good ones, the creators put so much effort, so much of their hearts into it, and they're not recognised. The industry is so rife with irony, the whole situation.
Jeremy Blaustein, on whether there are games besides Metal Gear Solid he'd rather be known for

The worse it is, the better it sells.
Lou Reed, attributed.

Milo: If they're so great, how come they're not tearing up the charts, babe?
Rex: Because you never play them, babe. You suck.

"You know, it's funny how...wrong an artist can be about his own work. Now, the one composition of Tchaikovsky's that he really detested was his Nutcracker Suite, which is probably the most popular thing he ever wrote."
Deems Taylor, Fantasia

I thought the finished product a rather humdrum folktale told in pedestrian language, certainly miles from the Hawthorne story I liked so much. When The New Yorker asked to publish it, I was shocked. When it won first prize in the O. Henry Best Short Story competition for 1996, I was convinced someone had made a mistake (that did not keep me from accepting the award, however). Reader response was generally positive, too. This story is proof that writers are often the worst judges of what they have written.
Stephen King, afterward on "The Man in the Black Suit."


Hollywood gets perverse about situations like that. It understands very well why a man might spend a year making a movie that a 13-year-old would disdain as trash. But if a man blessed with great success tries to do something really wonderful, there is a tendency to slap him down. It is just too much of an affront to all the compromises and little ethical deaths that happen every day all over town.

Stallone does pretty well for himself, playing a partially deaf small town sheriff, holding his own against Harvey Keitel and Robert De Niro of all people. The fact that he matches two of the best actors working today punch for punch without getting blown off the screen is pretty remarkable. Damn shame the film failed.

Are you telling me this is how good it could have been since he took over? ...It's a bold move to show the Doctor this afraid and this menaced by his personal demons since he is our constant companion in this show and he is the one that the kiddies latch onto for comfort. Goodness knows what they made of this existential nightmare—I can imagine they were either sitting there in a cold sweat or yawning throughout. Funnily enough this is one of those stories that I probably won't revisit too often.

Chris Carter had created Millennium, and it was clearly a show that meant a lot to him. While The X-Files was populist and accessible, Millennium always felt like more of an auteur project. It was solemn, abstract, contemplative. There is a sense that he was quite disappointed when his attention was diverted away from the show in its second year. Carter has talked time and time again about how he created Millennium as an examination of evil in the world.

When I imagine being in his position, I think of years of my life being consumed by one massive, demanding project after another, each with enormous pressure both financially and critically, with his name/reputation under the gun constantly. These projects are his life, and their reputation is his legacy. MGS2 had raised a very troubling question about whether Kojima was a fraud intellectual who 'doesn’t know what people want', and he still feels that deep sting of mockery to this day.
Terry Wolf, "Only For Revenge"

There are many indie platformers more well known than Eternal Daughter — and that's a real shame because there aren't many indie platformers as good as Eternal Daughter. Despite its relative popularity in the early 2000s (a few years before independently made games caught the attention of mainstream audiences), the game is mostly forgotten nowadays. What could have been the American equivalent of Cave Story (in fact, Eternal Daughter shares a few similarities with Studio Pixel's masterpiece) has instead faded into obscurity.


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