+1 for the nifty fifty, but I don't think it's maligned or sneered at so much, a lot of folk just don't get on with the build or genuinely require faster quieter af. I love mine, it's the third plastic I've owned (one stolen off me by my dad, one dropped) and I had a metal mk1 before that.
In the same vein, I loved my 28mm f2.8. Lots to hate. Geometric bokeh, arc-form drive, but it was compact, fringe free, cheap and sharp wide open. It's a lens that I knew would deliver for me and wouldn;t need much post-procrssing. Worked out as a slowish standard lens on my cameras, but a great wee walkabout lens.
I replaced it with a zoom as I was consolidating with an eye to video, but it's the only lens I've sold that I actually wish I hadn't. And I say that having owned tilt shifts, bigmas, fast L telephotos etc.