Suspension of Disbelief

A while back, I read the following in Neil Gaiman’s Journal, as he wrote about his impressions of the most recent Dr. Who episodes:

[T]here were bits of plot . . . that necessitated not just suspension of one’s disbelief but the surgical extraction of said disbelief before dangling it over a vat of bubbling acid in the hopes that it would shut up.

Neil Gaiman, regarding a recent Dr. Who episode

It was a moment like that which finally tossed me over the edge and forced me to pursue the life of a fiction author, in the hopes that one day people would choose to read/watch/play my stories and not have to suffer a full-on suspensionofdisbeliefectomy.

Then again, I wonder whether disbelief can be used in order to enhance a story. Does it always detract?

Share your thoughts