Here’s something I’ve been thinking about said better than I could. It’s from Gord Sellar’s blog and deals with “Industrialization of Culture”. And while Gord’s speaking in terms of k-pop and girl groups, he mentions it being a wider trend:
I suspect it reflects (or caters to) some unsettling, unconscious desire new to consumerist culture for everything in the world — food, clothing, weather, scenery, sex partners, everything — to be subjected to the same process of standardization that so much of the stuff of our lives already has been. We can see examples of this elsewhere: the baffling (to me) desire to see bands play live, while expecting them to perform their songs exactly as recorded in the studio is one example. (I was shocked to discover this expected of me — indeed, encouraged by fellow musicians — when I played in a rock band.) The interest in foods that are consistent in a number of ways — hence the success of, and trust placed in, fast foods by travelers in distant lands. The experience of the international hotel, the boring coonsistency of the megabrew lager beer. All of these seem to be expectations possible only in a post-cultural, or rather consumer-cultural society.
One of the worst things about consumerism is that it gets a decade or two head start over our capacity to critique it. Actually that might be the worst thing.