Okay, it's personal quirk confession time.
I like things pure, my chocolate, my peanut butter, my girl scout shortbread. I'm a rather bland-loving soul in many respects, I suppose. Take pecans. I love them, just not in my brownies. Peanut butter is great for sandwiches, but don't get it on my Hershey bar. I like my life a bit on the predictable side. I'm comfortable with routine and shun the unexpected. Not always, of course, but as a general rule.
Maybe that's why I love to be surprised when I read. I like to guess how it's all going to play out and be completely wrong, yet still find the ending satisfying--as I did with Ender's Game. But even then, I don't want my suspension-of-disbelief shattered. Shaken is okay. I cringe when cowboys fight aliens or spaceships land on worlds where magic rules. It's like a brand new batter walking up to the plate with two strikes already on the board. That's not to say it can't be done and done well, nor does it mean I discount it out of hand. It just has to grab me right off the bat and make me believe. I need to be so enraptured that I can accept the premise--and the sooner the better.
Did I watch Cowboys & Aliens? Nope. Didn't want to pay money for something starting off with two strikes against it. John Carter? The movie has the look of fantasy with all the elements of science fiction. Yeah, I plan to give that one a shot. What's the difference? Tough to say. It doesn't help that Westerns are low on my list of likes. Science fiction and fantasy are at the top of the list so maybe that's it. I'll give them all a chance eventually, but not at theater prices. (Another quirk: I'm cheap.)
Wrath of the Titans? Oh yeah, that's a go. The Hobbit too. It seems I'm more forgiving when my investment is a couple hours of watching rather than hours upon hours of reading. However, it's the same for me with cross-overs within the same genre. Alien vs. Predator? Watched it, but was glad I didn't do so at the theater. The premise and setup was okay, I guess. I mean, there has to be some plausible way to get these two races together. On Earth. Without defenseless humans suspecting. I guess it wasn't a total strike-out, but the bases were loaded with a full count. The payoff pitch forced the run. Nothing sailed out of the park. (At least for me.)
Some people love cross-overs and write fan fiction simply because it doesn't happen enough to suit them. Not me. I don't want to see Luke Skywalker strolling along the bridge of the Enterprise. I don't want to see Dr. Who or Flash Gordon addressing the Imperial Senate. And I definitely don't want to see Emperor Palpatine lecturing Gandalf on the power of dark side, although that could make for a cute tongue-in-cheek comedy sketch. Some things, in my opinion, should be kept pure. Like my chocolate.
What about you? Does Captain Kirk wooing Princess Leia tickle your fancy? I'd love to know!