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    Latest Articles

    Latest Topics


    How do fans ruin fandoms?

    For this, I define "fandom" as the content – the book, show, movie, etc. – well-loved by fans. But some fans say their fandom has been ruined by other fans. Whether a fandom can be ruined for a fan is, of course, subjective; it’s more interesting to consider why the fans say the fandom is ruined for them, how it’s even possible, and what fans can do about it. Examples may include H.P. Lovecraft’s books and, more recently, Rick and Morty.

    • I would suggest a few more examples of how some fans can be considered to ruin fandom for other fans. What might be viewed as enthusiasm by some fans might equally be considered obsession by others - such as Star Trek fans who love their shows so much that they buy Star Trek pyjamas; and how far can fandom go before it becomes idol worship. All fans are 'guilty' of overdoing it in other fans' eyes or conversely failing to take their fandom seriously. You're right when you state that it is subjective. I'd also suggest looking at how some fans who don't have the money to buy official merchandise can be very creative in making their own props and costumes. An example of this would be the incredible costumes made by some Dr.Who fans in Latin America (where the show is titled 'Doctor Mysterio') who did so simply because they had no ready access to official merchandise. – Amyus 5 months ago
    • Interesting topic. I ran into this as recently as last night when the second episode of Once Upon a Time season 7 aired. Fans are already griping and moaning about the writers' decision regarding Hook (won't spoil it if you haven't seen it). Reading all that griping had me bummed because I thought, "They've got a point; this could be the death knell for my favorite series." But then I thought, that's stupid. I still love the series, and in cases like this, what matters is what I think. Then again, being a fan isn't as fun if a bunch of other fans are dissing your show, your movies, your books...whatever. I'll be interested to read about these and other thought processes, and the conclusions different fans of different media come to. – Stephanie M. 5 months ago
    • I think you should use a more formal definition of the term fandom or even give a few definitions. It will help someone writing this topic really get a grasp of what you are trying to ask here. Also, I think if you do write this topic you should consider writing about things that are similar and not so broad. For example, writing about H.P. Lovecraft and J.R.R. Tolkeins. Or comparing Rick and Morty, Adventure Time and The Regular Show. It will help you keep focused and it could be neat to see if any of the fandoms overlap for similar shows or similar genres. – IAmToast 5 months ago
    • Here's what I'm thinking: Fan A and Fan B watch Rick and Morty. Fan A throws a riot in a McDonald's because of the show. Fan B says that the show is now "ruined" for him, and gives Fan A as a reason. That's an example; I may not have a clear definition, but the definition doesn't matter. The author who takes the topic can use whatever terms they want. – noahspud 5 months ago

    Prequel-itis: Causes, symptoms, and cures

    Symptoms of prequel-itis, in TV shows specifically, include 1) pointless cameos and foreshadowing for the sake of fan service and 2) backtracking to keep the plot from progressing "too far," which would result in the show ending. Examples of victims include Gotham, Smallville, and Merlin.
    What I don’t know about, and what I’d be interested in reading, is possible cures for this problem. I am unfamiliar with the Star Wars cartoon prequels, but I’m told they do a better job, so they may hold answers.
    Another possible piece of this topic is causes of prequel-itis. Why do prequels exhibit these problems so often? Is there something inherently problematic with prequels in general?

    • Sounds like a good topic in my opinion. Although a more specific definition of prequel-itis would definitely help. You might also include a third point to them. Which is: retroactively improving the already established lore and story of the series. The best example for this include the Walking Dead, as well as Flash. Looking forward to reading about this topic :) – shehrozeameen 1 year ago
    • @shehrozeameen Prequel-itis, as I see it, is like a syndrome, a set of symptoms that commonly occur together. There isn't really a definition other than "a set of symptoms experienced by prequels including x, y, z...." If the author of the topic could think of a specific definition, of course, he/she'd be welcome to apply it. – noahspud 1 year ago
    • I'd certainly be interested to read this. Would you also consider doing one for sequelitis, because there are a ton of bad sequels out there. Disney is particularly guilty when it comes to both prequels and sequels. They're also fond of the midquel for some reason. – Stephanie M. 1 year ago
    • To be clear, this topic is a suggestion for someone else to write (that's how this works). Also, you do have a point, but sequelitis is a separate thing, and I felt that prequelitis was a topical subject that hadn't gotten much attention. – noahspud 1 year ago
    • I think this is a very interesting topic but I disagree with Merlin being placed in the prequel category. Although the show did begin before Arthur was King, the show very much did hit every major event in Arthurian Legend. It included everything from the sword in the stone, knights of the round table, Guinevere's Affair and Arthur's (spoiler alert) eventual death in the series finale. I'd argue that rather than backtracking, the show fast forwarded a bit to hit all these plot points before their pre-decided series end in season 5. The only real difference was that Merlin was depicted as young rather than a wizened old sorcerer adviser. (The series has a host of finale issues that I could probably write a whole different article about but that's not relevant to this comment) – LC Morisset 1 year ago
    • Fair point. Except for the first, what, three seasons, Arthur isn't king, Morgan isn't evil, and Merlin isn't a respected advisor. So it certainly begins as a prequel, and it does indeed backtrack: Arthur starts to think magic is okay. Merlin almost tells his secret. Something bad happens. Arthur is once again convinced that magic is bad. Repeat. Morgan dies as punishment for her bad deeds. Oh wait, she has more to do later. Let's bring her back and let her sit in a cottage for a year. All the Arthurian mythology stuff happens in those last couple seasons, and we see the set up for all of them: the lady in the lake, Excalibur, each major knight of the round table, and Morgan's descent into villainy. I call that a prequel. – noahspud 1 year ago

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    Latest Comments

    Okay, I was also unclear in my response. When I said “lower your standards,” I meant to say lower your expectations. Settling implies there is a person or thing that doesn’t meet the requirements so you change the requirements to let them in – you settle for less because it’s better than nothing. I wouldn’t recommend that either.
    Lowering your expectations, on the other hand, means not setting the standards too high in the first place, not “staging your true desires” in fiction. That just seems ridiculous to me. Even if you’re not letting yourself get hurt, I expect you’re going to hurt someone else at some point. People calling you rude names because they thought they’d reached a certain level of intimacy with you may be just one symptom of that.
    Again, I don’t mean to criticize you personally. But going off what you said, it still sounds like your views on love can lead to an unfortunate lifestyle. If someone with your philosophy does enter a relationship, they expect the other person to disappoint them at some point, but as long as they’re aware of that from the start they can’t or won’t complain? Sounds dangerous. Sounds like the road to pornography, affairs, and divorce. Doesn’t matter if one person is “trying to change” the other or not, if they hold up a barrier of glass and reserve deep emotional connection for fictional characters, they may as well be addicted to porn, far as I can tell.
    I still say love exists outside of “luck,” and that ain’t it.
    Again, thank you for contributing to the discussion. I like to see my article striking a chord like this.

    Can You Really Fall In Love With a Fictional Character?

    No problem; long comments make for great discussion.
    I absolutely get what you’re saying. I’m an introvert for the same reasons I’m a fiction-loving nerd; sometimes even platonic friendships don’t seem worth the time and effort. And I’m aware of the pitfalls of focusing on having a relationship rather than finding the right one.
    But hear me out for a second. It seems you use fictional characters to represent your high standards, and the idea that a real person could meet those standards is a “delusion” that you’ve broken. To “settle,” you say, is to return to that delusion.
    You also seem to be saying that finding someone who really meets those standards would be the same as finding someone you love, which is “all luck.” I see how you could think that if all the relationships you’ve seen have been as you described. Still, that seems like a problematic definition of love and a grim way of looking at the world and living life.
    I don’t think love is about “settling” for someone who’s “good enough.” It’s about appreciating the good qualities in this person who is just as imperfect as you and appreciates you in return and complements your own imperfections. It’s not about “compromising” your standards of “absolute beauty”; it’s about having realistic expectations in the first place and then finding someone who you care about in spite of those expectations or who even surpasses those expectations somehow.
    To be blunt, if your “castle of glass” is based on fictional characters, I would suggest lowering your standards, whether you’re actively looking for a relationship or you prefer to stay single right now. Otherwise, I imagine you’ll be missing the fine qualities of the people around you that you could be appreciating on a purely platonic level.
    This isn’t a shot directly at you, mind you. I’m mainly philosophizing, just like I was doing in the article. As I said, I can relate to your point of view; it made me think. Thank you for the discussion.

    Can You Really Fall In Love With a Fictional Character?

    Hoo boy. Many great points; thanks for the input.
    As I pointed out, love for idealized fictional characters can have dangers similar to pornography. I did say philia – admiration for the good qualities of the character – is a good thing in this context, but I see now that it can adversely affect your standards for real people and thus endanger real life relationships. But at least you’re aware of that potential problem.

    Can You Really Fall In Love With a Fictional Character?

    All excellent points. This is one of the reasons to love literary web series like “The Lizzie Bennet Diaries,” “Emma Approved,” “From Mansfield with Love,” “The Cate Morland Chronicles,” “Northbound,” … I’m probably forgetting some. They transfer Austen’s classic stories to modern settings in modern language so modern audiences (specifically the ones overwhelmed by the dense prose of the originals) can appreciate them. Look ’em up.

    Thin Slicing in Jane Austen's "Emma"

    Many good points. For completions sake, I would add that although it may not be spelled out in the first Thor movie, it’s not hard to work out Odin’s reasoning for choosing Earth for Thor’s exile. It was part of his hero’s journey, as you mentioned; he was supposed to learn about being a non-royal, non-god, non-jackass from people who wouldn’t recognize him as the God of Thunder. It wasn’t luck.

    Avengers 2012 vs Justice League 2017: A Lesson in Narrative Storytelling

    That’s a good distinction. Often, the assumption seems to be that if it can’t be the reciprocated “in love” romance, there shouldn’t be any kind of love for fictional characters. But as my article said, there are many kinds of love.

    Can You Really Fall In Love With a Fictional Character?

    Fair point, but I might argue childhood and high school sweethearts don’t have much more of a basis for love. If you believe each person can only fall in love once, then yeah, fictional characters don’t make the cut. But depending on your definition of love…well, that’s what my article tried to explore.

    Can You Really Fall In Love With a Fictional Character?

    That sounds like storge, born out of familiarizing yourself with the characters. It seems to happen a lot with writers and actors.

    Can You Really Fall In Love With a Fictional Character?