Issue Forty-Four: Letters Page

We love getting your messages, so please feel free to get in touch!
Don’t forget, you can:

Here’s what you’ve been saying since we published Issue Forty-Three.

Hello! I was wondering if you’ve ever run into negativity about “protecting” a celebrity crush? being too protective, as in always assuming the celebrity is unhappy and should be pitied for the life of fame they’ve chosen, etc. is one aspect but if someone is criticizing my crush in an unfair way, whether that be about his career choices, personal choices, etc. evidently I am not supposed to show support for him; that is being protective and not desirable. I don’t understand this, I would speak up in support of my friends in these instances and be applauded for it, but when I do it for someone famous that i admire, I’m scoffed at…by fellow fans, no less![…]

[…]when did it become the norm to bully your crush and put yourself above them? the double-standards that are applied to celebrity by fans disappoint me 😦

kelbel75, via email

Hi!

As far as we’re concerned, it’s only natural to feel protective of the people we’re fans of – as you say, you’d stand up for a friend so why not for a stranger you admire? What we would suggest, however, is not letting it get to the point where you’re getting into big arguments with people about it. Someone saying that the person you’re a fan of couldn’t cut it in films is uncalled for, yes, and often untrue – but it doesn’t actually affect the person it’s being said about in the slightest, so don’t feel bad about agreeing to disagree, especially if friendships with people you actually know are at risk. In the end, the only person who really knows why an actor prefers theatre to film, or a musician prefers touring to releasing new albums, is that person. The rest of us are just speculating, and it’s not worth falling out over. By all means stand up for the person you’re a fan of, especially if people are being really mean – but don’t let it ruin your life.

Thanks for getting in touch!

-Ed.

PS: Sorry for the delayed reply, your email really made us think! We may do an article along similar lines at some point, in fact.

One of our readers, Firefly, asked if we could run a review on Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, so look out for that next issue!

Christ. I wonder if this is some effect of groups. I wonder if anyone would dare to do this on their own. Running after an actor by yourself would feel rather silly I think. But being in a group seems to make that acceptable to more people? Don’t know, I’m rambling.
I think this might be a consequence of too much focus on ME ME ME. And then there’s a group thinking of getting THEIR time with the actor, and THEIR autograph and THEIR special memory.

I hope a lot of fans read this. It should be common sense to think about it from the POV of your admired celebrity (sign their names four hundred times) but it seems that’s somehow a step many are forgetting to take. Or are just not taking in a frenzy of fannish feelings (which are fine as long as you keep them in fandom – but different rules apply in the real world). So maybe it’s just a case of forgetting what a unique space fandom itself is, with a very different etiquette…

Thanks for writing this, I had a vague idea that this sort of stuff happens in theory but wasn’t aware it has gotten bad recently. :-(

mekare on ‘Fandom As a Potential Nightmare

We’re not sure if it’s got worse lately or just become more visible, but we agree – it’s got to be something to do with the group dynamic that fosters this lack of common sense. Hopefully if enough people are sensible, that’ll catch on eventually too. Thanks for getting in touch! -Ed.

I have never understood this longing to meet the object of my fannish devotion in real life. For it to be at all meaningful it would have to be in a social context, like both of us being at the same social event and being able to interact in a normal peer-to-peer manner. As this is rather unlikely to happen, what do I gain exactly by waylaying someone and make them write their signature on something shoved under their nose? Just so I can prove I’ve once seen them face to face? I don’t get it.
As for throwing things on stage or running after someone who obviously tries to get away…? Can’t fathom.

Silke Ketelsen on ‘Fandom As a Potential Nightmare

It’s hard to understand what motivates people sometimes. While we can understand the wish to get a chance to briefly tell someone that they’ve helped or inspired us, we really do struggle to see the appeal in chasing a celebrity who’s trying to leave. Thanks for getting in touch! -Ed.

Excellent points in this article! And you certainly speak for me too – I’d love some fresh romance which deviates from the Jane Austen model (as much as I adore her books). How can we not have moved beyond what she imagined in the early 19th century??!
These days I find the romance I am looking for in fandom actually! I read mainly slash but find that the best written fic there transcends gender and offers the kind of realistic and meaningful portrayal of romance I want to read.

mekare on ‘Branding in Fandom: I Will Always Love You

Fanfiction can certainly provide a lot of things the mainstream fiction industry doesn’t seem to be able to get right. Thank goodness for fan-creators! -Ed.

What we’ve been talking about on Twitter:

  • We had a couple of replies to our question about how your OTPs (without naming any names) would spend Valentine’s Day – @angeliclore told us they’d probably spend some time in front of an old movie before one surprised the other with pie. Meanwhile, @Fools4869 suggested that they’d solve a crime at a restaurant and score free food from the owner. I wonder who they could possibly be talking about…?
  • @IrishGirlOHara let us know she loved our last issue, especially our tips on taking a break from fandom and our editorial on staying positive – apparently, both hit close to home as a Hiddlestoner.

So, if you’re not following @FandomWanderers you’re missing out on some good gossip!

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