Leigh Alexander has another great Aberrant Gamer column up over at GameSetWatch, this one talking about 'fanboyism' and the inherent conflicts that crop up with the review system:
I would like you to briefly indulge me by participating in an exercise. Remove all of the mascots and familiar faces from Super Smash Bros. Brawl, and replace them with original constructs. Notice, if you will, the somewhat clumsy user interface, the high percentage of total content that must be unlocked to be enjoyed, the complete lack of usability of the Wii controls, and the lack of significant graphical or gameplay progression over the previous generation. It's true that even then, you'd have a good game. But would you have a 10 game?
What does it mean that I'm hesitant to even state my opinion that it'd be a 7 game? And what does that crap even mean, anymore?
Leigh suggests overhauling the review system in some easily achievable ways (starting by scraping numerical scores), and proposing that we "we embrace our own subjectivity, neutering fanboyism by accepting it — because it sure ain't going anywhere." It's a musing that's well-worth a read through.