When it comes to the movie industry, there are some actors and actresses who are born to play certain characters and be in certain circumstances. For example, Tom Hanks was born to play leading men in romantic comedies, and Emma Watson was born to play witches. These types of individuals usually emerge from prominent families with high social status and are destined to play major supporting roles in Hollywood films. Unfortunately, not all actors are created equal, and not all characters are created equal. This is especially true when it comes to love stories and rom-coms. Inevitably, they end up falling in love with the wrong person, their personal life is a mess, and they never get the chance to be happy. This is not the kind of story that Hollywood wants to promote, and so the characters they create have limited shelf life.

The fact of the matter is that when it comes to romantic comedies, there is only so much a person can do with limited dialogue and a handful of scenes. The minute the writers put more than five words in an ordinary character’s mouth, he or she immediately becomes a cliché. Of course, these types of movies make a lot of money, but the goodwill built up over the years has begun to deteriorate. The only way forward is to admit that this type of movie needs to be retired, and for this, we have 2018 to thank.

Newfound Strength

One of the biggest stories of the last year was the resurgence of Baby Bojack Horseman. The Netflix series came back for a third season in April, and it was received with open arms by the audience, critics, and even the notoriously picky horse people of Twitter.

The show’s creator, Bojack Horseman, is a 90s sitcom buff who channeled his love for the genre into a new series about the perils of middle age. Although he’s best known for his comedic roles, he’s actually a very serious person who takes his work seriously. Behind the scenes of the show, he’s poured his heart into making it as realistic as possible, and it really shows.

One of the problems with romantic comedies is that they can be very unrealistic in terms of the characters’ physical appearance. It’s no secret that Hollywood loves to cash in on the success of The Hangover films, and so it was no coincidence that many of the leading ladies in the rom-coms and buddy comedies of the late 2010s look exactly like the female version of the film’s famous male characters. Most of them are not built like the archetypal Hollywood leading man, and it shows. They often complain about this, especially when it comes to the highly profitable franchises that grew out of The Hangover, and so it’s clear that the industry wants to change.

One of the more interesting aspects of Bojack Horseman is that it manages to be both extremely funny and incredibly touching. Watching the show is like eating a big bowl of warm, gooey chocolate cake and then wiping away occasional tears. For whatever reason, the series pulls off the delicate balancing act between comedy and drama quite well.

TikTok Dominates

While Netflix is best known for its streaming services, the company also controls roughly 80 million monthly active users on TikTok, making it the most popular social media platform in the world.

The app doesn’t just focus on sharing short-form videos and letting users discover new content. It also provides a space for users to engage with each other through animated gifs, live chats, and polls. These days, everyone on TikTok is talking about, analyzing, and praising the platform’s latest big hit, TikTok Star Wars.

Last year, TikTok managed to dodge some of the platform’s previous pitfalls. Back when TikTok was just a funny and quirky piece of technology that people used to procrastinate on social media, there was no predicting what would happen. In the end, we ended up with the most popular social media platform in the world, and it all started with a simple idea: let users discover content that appeals to them and engage with others through interesting, short-form videos.

The beauty of this app is that it is constantly evolving and changing with the times. The fact that it has managed to retain its user base over the years is a testament to its success. As its user base continues to grow, so does the need to keep up with the times and keep attracting new audiences.

Dark Moment For Sexploitation

Speaking of growth, let’s not forget about TikTok’s numerous competitors. The most prominent of these is arguably TikTok’s biggest threat, TikTok Star Wars. As we’ve established, the success of one of the app’s biggest competitors can be attributed to the unique format of the game. Rather than building a following based on organic growth and attracting new users through marketing and paid promotions, TikTok Star Wars effectively replicates as much as possible the experience of watching films from a bygone era. Specifically, you’ll notice a lot of similarities between the two platforms in terms of content, aesthetics, and functionality.

TikTok is undoubtedly aware of this looming threat, and so they’ve taken action to try and protect their crown. Back in August, they purchased the intellectual property of “Sexy Schoolgirls” from Amazon for a whopping $25 million, and it would appear that this was just the beginning. As recently as December, a writer for Variety discovered that the platform had hired several high-profile intellectual property attorneys to vet their potential purchase of the Batman characters. If all of this wasn’t enough, just this month, we learned that Warner Bros. had filed a lawsuit against TikTok for copyright infringement, trademark infringement, and breach of contract. The suit seeks unspecified damages and asks the court to issue an injunction to stop the video-sharing platform from using the DC Comics characters.

Self-reflection Is Key

It’s been a tough year for Hollywood, and it’s not over yet. In the last month of 2018, several big-name directors, actors, and producers took a stand against sexual harassment and inequality, and it continues to have a positive effect. Just this month alone, we’ve seen A-list celebrities speak their minds on political issues, engage in activism, and even lend their support to important causes. This is undoubtedly a reaction to the Harvey Weinstein scandal and the wave of allegations that followed. It is also, at least in part, a reaction to the “Me Too” movement that began in the wake of the Weinstein scandal. In 2018, more and more women have been coming forward to share their stories of sexual assault and harassment, and for the first time in decades, there is real change happening. This, of course, is not to say that we’ve seen the end of sexual harassment and inequality in Hollywood, but it does mean that there is now a real opportunity for change.

If we want to get through this year and avoid another round of seismic shifts in Hollywood, we need to figure out how to use this opportunity wisely. One of the most effective ways of avoiding the limelight and maintaining a lower profile is to not make any public appearances or be seen around other people. This way, your life will not be significantly altered by these events, and so you preserve your ability to go about your business without any repercussions. Of course, this does not mean that we should not speak out against injustice when we see it. In fact, now is the perfect time for activists to bring about real change in Hollywood and throughout society.