I once asked my dad, what is the big freaking deal with the Beatles? What made them so very betterer than everything else?
He answered, well, have you heard anything else from the Beatles' era?
I hadn't. Not too much anyway. Some, but not a lot. And, in the course of that conversation, which was far more drawn out than illustrated above--that's sort of a loopy statement--, I learned that everything which I thought was cool about contemporary rock bands, the Beatles pretty much did first. Apparently, they were the first band to put the lyrics on the album, just to illustrate.
The big freaking deal with the Beatles? Well, it's vague and not very clear when compared to everything now, which is influenced by them.
Joss Whedon. Elseplace, people I know have been discussing Joss Whedon. What, postulated one doubter, is the big freaking deal with Joss Whedon? And people illustrated, in calm and articulate manners, what the big freaking deal was. And I won't talk about that much now, because that isn't the point.
Here is: One big freaking deal kudo which was brought up about Mr. Whedon was his boldness in actually allowing the realistic growth of his characters. In Buffy the Vampire Slayer they begin in highschool, then go to college, and have to deal with entirely new dynamics, etc. And I thought, "Ah, yes, bold. Genius, man."
But then I remembered Smallville. A soap opera about the young years of Clark Kent, the Superman. Admittedly, Smallville was no doubt meant to fill a void Buffy left, when it ended just a while before. Smallville was a sort of poor imitation. But one thing which it did do was let its characters grow with age. Clark Kent begins in highschool, then, eventually, goes off to college, and he isn't actually living in Smallville any longer...for a whole month.
And I thought about this--Smallville having the same boldness as Buffy, on a different level--and it struck me that Buffy was there first. Whedon broke ground, and people went, "Hell...cool...you can do that? Is it--is it allowed? Let's do it anyway."
Whedon paved the way for revolutionaries. He's like Beethoven.