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What are some of your "Comfort Food" Fictions?

Kylia Quilor

Hopeless Romantic and Nerd
I don't know if any of you have heard/use the phrase "Empty Calorie" fiction - it's often deployed as a derogatory, and thus sometimes seems subjective, but the general notion is that there is some fiction that is so without any merit, complexity or depth that it is the same as eating empty calories - maybe momentarily enjoyable, but you'll have forgotten most of it a short time after it's done, and it doesn't have anything you can really think about/hold onto/etc.

Now, sometimes, that's fine. I like me some empty calorie fiction from time to time.

But if one extends the metaphor, there's also what I've personally taken to calling "Comfort Food" Fiction - that is, books, movies, TV shows, games, etc, that are, as it were, hearty and filling, even if they're not "super good for you" - that is, there's quite a bit of density to them, there's some stuff to think about and chew on, mentally, but equally, it's also just pure fun, purely enjoyable. The best such fictions in this category are both in equal measure - where you can read the book whether you want to think deep thoughts about the universe or the questions the story raises, but sometimes, you just want mindless fun, and the book works for that too.

There's a whole spectrum and scale within this notion, of course, but I'm curious what other people would place in this category - that is, fiction that has depth to it, but doesn't *force* you to think deep, critical thoughts on every page/chapter/episode/whatever. Fiction that raises complex and nuanced questions, but is also something you can enjoy when you've had a long day and you just wanna switch your brain off and not have to think for a while.

For me personally, things I'd put in this category is basically anything written by David Weber, the Stargate SG-1 and Stargate Atlantis TV shows, Once Upon a Time (the TV show), Skyrim, the Fallout games, and even, though on the more complex end of the spectrum, usually, the Mass Effect and Dragon Age games - both have some layered, nuanced complexity in the decisions you have to make and in the characters you meet and the places you visit, but sometimes you just want to watch your character make out with hot aliens and slaughter demons, etc without thinking too hard, and at any given time when you play, you can do either/or.

What about you all?


Senile Old Coot
Bootlegged versions of books by Tom Kratman, Space Marine (not giving that goon my money). The stupidity and twisted worldview is hilarious, and easy to flip through the pages since the guy can't do big words for fear of killing off his audience.


Well-known member
John Ringo's Legacy of the Aldenata, pretty okay mil-scifi. Honor Harrington was before At All Costs then it really went to shit.

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