I was thinking today about recent trends in popular entertainment. First, I considered the recent trend of "mature" superhero stories. And then, the earlier trend for intellectuals (self-described) to find "dark fairy tales" in all sorts of stories, which later evolved into the more explicit form of actual fairy tales rewritten for an adult audience. Not to mention the fascination of many adults with "young adult" fiction, with its overly trite plots and generally low quality writing.
What is it that makes us insist on taking material meant for children and rewriting it to be "dark" and thus, supposedly, more mature? Is it that we hope in so doing we will not have to face the fact that so many of us simply refuse to grow up? That perpetual adolescence seems to be the normal state for far too many adults?
I don't have an answer, I just wanted to ask the question and see what replies I might receive. Perhaps after some thought I will find more to say.