Why We All Love “Worst” Lists

So far this year, we’ve gotten a few of really good movies, such as Inside Out, Marvel’s Ant-Man, Mad Max: Fury Road and Jurassic World. I’ve got a feeling these films will make it to a lot of critics’ Best Movies of 2015 list. Conversely, we’ve also gotten a whole slew of stinkers as well, including Fant4stic (which I still refuse to call Fantastic Four), Pixels and Mordecai. These films will most probably fall into a lot of critics’ Worst Movies list for the year.

Writing a “Best of” and “Worst of” lists for the year has become a staple of a lot of websites that review stuff. It’s become an annual tradition that both these lists are published at the start of the year. I understand the logic of putting out a list ranking the best of something for the year; these are things that need to be celebrated and represent the positive side of the year. But what’s the logic of publishing the worst of something? Okay, these list can serve as a warning these things should be avoided but there shouldn’t be a need to rank them! So, why do people have this fascination of listing down the worst of something and actually rating them?


My particular pick for Worst Movie of 2015, by the way.

In my opinion, it boils down to a couple of things: the enjoyment of “hating” on something and the need to connect with the world.

You may be confused regarding the the first item: the enjoyment of “hating” on something. But it’s actually quite simple. Have you ever watch an angry rant on YouTube about something, anything really and found it hilarious? Why? Because it’s entertaining! We’ve seen a lot of comedians and reviewers become highly popular and successful because of these rants against something. You know the character Anger from Inside Out? He’s voiced by Lewis Black and he’s practically made a career of ranting about things!

Finally, there’s also that dark part of every human that loves to tear people down. We all have this “evil” thing inside us that does wish to see great men fall. It’s a part of human nature. Maybe it’s because of jealousy or we just don’t like the idea that there is someone much better than us. We want to see people suffer, especially if it’s someone we hate. Morbid but true.

This actually leads to my second point: the need to connect with the world. We want our opinion to matter to someone. And everyone has a opinion on something so it’s always nice to find someone that agrees with that opinion. You can actually feel vindicated that someone else has the same point of view as your own. Or, on the flip side, you can feel angry that someone doesn’t have the same point of view as your own.

Wait... 28% liked it? That's 1 our of 4 people! I call shenanigans!

Wait… 28% liked it? That’s 1 our of 4 people! I call shenanigans!

In some way, just reading these “Worst of” lists actually is a way for us to connect with the rest of the world. We want to see if what we think is the worst movie of the year (I still say it’s gotta be Fant4stic) will also be the worst movie of the year for someone else. We want to see if someone else can name a worse movie than the one you have in mind! We want to feel validated regarding they way we feel towards something.

These are just my thoughts on why I personally love these “Worst of” lists and why, year after year, I never fail to read or watch my favorite reviewers rail against their hated films/TV shows/games/etc. Your reasons may be totally different from mine but, hey, whether or not you agree with me, it’s all good. Because, like I said earlier, your opinion matters to someone.

Do you enjoy reading “Worst of” lists? Why or why not? Let me know in the comments section below!


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