i think at some point if you’re gonna do Dark Brooding Media and have a lead character who is really a fuckup, and reaps consequences in their personal life from being a fuckup - losing friends, getting arrested, not being trusted or taken seriously - at some point, you have to throw them something. something in their life has to look up. maybe they finally beat some demon that they’ve been struggling with for a long time, or maybe they finally figure out how to have a healthy personal relationship. maybe they get revenge on something from their tragic past, and it actually makes them feel better, instead of just empty and gross. maybe they apologize and reconcile with someone. but it has to be something.
‘cause the whole “everything is terrible and also i’m drunk and it’s raining” is cute for a while, but eventually a couple of things happen when it hits critical mass: a.] the writer gets into a game of chicken where they feel required to out-grimdark themselves, and b.] it gets so relentless that people don’t want to see it anymore. even for people who are really into pessimistic or cynical media, there comes an event horizon where it just becomes a slog, and you start to feel like the character’s never going to develop by fixing themselves.
there really needs to be balance, otherwise it just feels like there’s no point.