Originally Posted by StarvingArtist
The point I'm trying to make is that it's much harder to quantify good/clever/cool changes to a costume that was designed more for symbolism rather then function. The rubric for such judgements is far more subjective. For a suit that has a given purpose or function like Batman's, you can more easily judge cool changes to the suit because you can measure them against the suit's purpose. This I think is the essence of modernity in superhero costumes. The general audience puts a premium on reasoning behind everything, or at least the illusion of reasoning behind everything.
Of course, tastes will always be subjective and individually valid. But we can (and do) give weight to consensus - a kind of (provisional) “objectivity.”
So for instance… while you can’t call my love for disco leisure suits wrong, you can say that I’m out of step with consensus. And you can legitimately advise that if I dressed my cool hero in a disco leisure suit, I likely wouldn’t get a favorable reaction from audiences.
By the same token… (and this is entirely hypothetical
a majority of people think of the red trunks as passé, the object of ridicule or otherwise distracting, then this is a fact
about popular opinion.
So what to do? One option is to just ignore consensus - decide that tradition is more important than popularity. The other is to adapt and evolve (in order to preserve the original, underlying “meaning” that I alluded to earlier).