I've dropped plenty of media for that terrible literary device. I don't understand it. A good author should realize that by making the enemy look good, it makes the protagonist look even better. Beating a stupid enemy, though? Big deal.
There was a fantasy book I started not long ago. Really liked the main character and the primary threat had a lot of potential. It turned into something of a feminist romp, yeah, but I've read books with a feminist slant before and enjoyed them when they were well-written and realized. Not this time. In this book, the author's way of empowering the female characters was to make all the male characters stupid, petty, and weak. On top of that, at least three of the male characters had love or desire for a female character as one of their primary motivations. On top of that, the female characters were the ones with the strongest magical powers and by far the strongest warriors. It came across as nothing more than wish fulfillment and ruined a story that had some actual potential.
You don't make your heroes look good by giving them a cakewalk path to victory, you just bore your audience and potentially break their sense of immersion. It's bad writing.
That sounds like a great book. Women rule! Men drool! *sticks tongue out and rolls down eyelid*
In seriousness that wish fulfillment issue is something that really bores me in any medium. It's one thing if it's being done for comedy, but when a story tries to pretend a hero is troubled but never really show them dealing with a real challenge or a conflict that isn't resolved in 5 minutes it feels like the author is trying to have their cake and eat it too. I'm not going to believe a character is an underdog if everyone else is just completely stupid or satellites around the MC...it feels less like the author tried to create an interesting world and more they created an avatar and decided to write a story about how cool they are.
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