as in, META ABOUT META. yes i know that’s not really how inception works—believe me, i really know that—but i don’t care. it’s catchy! and there’s also the fact that that’s what inception has come to mean, in current cultural vernacular: people took the concept the movie is structured around (to wit, dreams within dreams) and made its title into a word meaning “a thing within itself/a thing about itself/etc.” which, as set-ups for posts about media go, is pretty solid, so, without further ado….
dear everybody who has ever felt it necessary to inform me that i am reading too much into [whatever piece of media] in writing meta about it:
first of all, congratulations, you are spot-fucking-on. i am definitely, for sure, no doubt about it, 100% reading far too much into it, every single goddamn time. this is not sarcasm, i very much mean this—in fact, all of my fanon meta is grounded firmly in reading too much into the canon in question. maybe it’s because i threw caution to the winds and went to school to study english literature and creative writing instead of leaning a more marketable trade; it does get hard to break that habit. however, mostly i’m pretty certain i read too much into shit because:
- it’s fun
- i find it rewarding
- it’s fun
Ladies and Gentlemen, here is a beautiful short essay on why I love literary analysis. And it isn’t limited to English class—having opinions about a piece of media, and then supporting those opinions, and using them as starting places for further speculation—that IS fun.
I like to think of the difference between authorial intent and reader interpretation like this: your original text (book, movie, whatever) is like a marble statue in a round room. The walls of this round room are painted a variety of different colors. Depending upon where you stand in the room, you have a different view of the statue, and behind the statue is a different background. The author has a complete 360-degree view of the statue, and was the one who designed it, but all of us readers bring our own background which we use while viewing the statue. Or text. None of our interpretations are wrong—they are simply a matter of perspective.
I actually miss writing essays, which feels kind of weird. It’s true though. Might as well accept it.