+1 to everything @timethief wrote. Excellent viewpoint.
To answer the original concern raised by @vidalyricsl, the best, most sincere answer I can give you is that not every theme is for everyone.
Our customization tools (Colors, Fonts, Custom CSS, etc.) and premium themes are extra steps that you can take to even further dive into making your blog more awesome, but they are not required in the least. We have a TON of free themes that, out of the box, are ridiculously nice, and we want them to just work on activation.
Death to options panels with 1,000 switches; death to making you work an hour just to make your site look like the demo. With every new theme we're launching, it's all about making sure that you're given something that you expect to get. Some call it stiff. I call it meeting expectations.
The upgrades are awesome; I spend a great deal of my waking hours wrangling premium themes on WordPress.com and love it. I also spend a ton of time with our custom tools making sure they work well with our themes. But to say that you absolutely need them to have a great blog would be a lie.
Write, keep writing, and keep tinkering with your blog. If it gets to a point where you want more control (and bells and whistles), purchase an upgrade or a premium theme (including direct support from the developers of the themes). If it then gets to a point where you want even more control, go self-hosted to WordPress.org.
Keep the feedback coming, gang. I, for one, really appreciate it.