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  1. #1

    Default Returning the Favor-- CBR's Own Matt on Toxic Fandom

    The column is here, and we appreciate Matt letting us run it. I should add that my prefatory remarks are referring to the CBR forums as they existed in the 1990s. They're much nicer now, and we are all grateful.
    When I'm not hanging around CBR, I'm writing stuff like this... The Green Ghost and Sherlock Holmes. Find more here. Also the weekly column right here at CBR.

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    Some of these guys, they aren't very mature and they're just resistant to change, even if that change is temporary. Other guys, they'll admit it's about the culture wars for them.


    Star Wars is an interesting example...Force Awakens, Rogue One, and Last Jedi all made over a billion dollars, but according to some folks these movies were failures that prove no one wants these new SJW characters ( even though they were big hits) and Kathleen Kennedy needs to be fired. Solo which features a classic character who is a straight white male and directed by Ron freaking Howard under performs...it's still Kennedy who needs to be fired because she's a feminist or something.

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    I'm telling you the Carol Danvers movie freak out is coming...

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    Duly appointed enforcer of the Admin Accord Matt's Avatar
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    I have to thank Greg and the crew at Atomic Junk Shop for publishing it. I've known Greg for years now (on and off) and he's always been a true gentleman. I do recommend checking AJS, they regularly have some excellent articles.
    I do hope that people see what I've done as a reasoned and evidenced analysis of the issue, and that it causes people to simply stop and reflect on themselves and what is going on across a number of franchises.
    "Let me guess. My theories appall you, my heresies outrage you, I never answer letters, and you don't like my tie!"
    @Matt_of_Geek

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    Quote Originally Posted by ed2962 View Post
    Some of these guys, they aren't very mature and they're just resistant to change, even if that change is temporary. Other guys, they'll admit it's about the culture wars for them.


    Star Wars is an interesting example...Force Awakens, Rogue One, and Last Jedi all made over a billion dollars, but according to some folks these movies were failures that prove no one wants these new SJW characters ( even though they were big hits) and Kathleen Kennedy needs to be fired. Solo which features a classic character who is a straight white male and directed by Ron freaking Howard under performs...it's still Kennedy who needs to be fired because she's a feminist or something.
    Its pretty clear that a number fans are becoming less and less entertained by the current crop of star war movies.

    Solo's underperforance was pretty much the end result.
    Last edited by Baseman; 06-30-2018 at 04:54 PM.

  6. #6

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    Talking about the box office is missing the point. Whether or not the thing makes money is utterly irrelevant to the issue of entitled fans demanding that their whims be catered to -- and when they're not, punishing creators with stalking, online bullying, threats, doxxing, and even lesser things like the way Vox Day and his flying monkeys tried to rig the Hugos.

    The financial success of projects is basically the actual measure, the way fans SHOULD vote. With their wallets. Because first of all, it's the only thing studios and publishers pay attention to. And second, it doesn't involve fans inserting themselves uninvited into people's lives to berate them. When this happened in person-- say, in the sixties, when little old ladies would scream at actresses playing soap opera villains when they encountered them in public-- we all knew that was obsessive and abnormal. But online, we keep getting this defense of "Yeah, but they really, really CARE." So? The little old ladies cared too. It's still obsessive and creepy and needs to be called out as such EVERY TIME, because the more we ignore it and normalize it, the more it escalates.
    When I'm not hanging around CBR, I'm writing stuff like this... The Green Ghost and Sherlock Holmes. Find more here. Also the weekly column right here at CBR.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Baseman View Post
    Its pretty clear that a number fans are becoming less and less entertained by the current crop of star war movies.

    Solo's underperforance was pretty much the end result.
    That's fine. However all this other nonsense needs to stop.

    The first three movies, TFA and droids and ewoks cartoons are the only Star Wars stuff I have seen. I am not going to throw a fit over the stuff I don't like about it.

    If I could get $200 million-Star Wars would be the LAST thing on my mind to make. Use that money for movies from some of these other companies-like Scout or Valiant.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Greg Hatcher View Post
    Talking about the box office is missing the point. Whether or not the thing makes money is utterly irrelevant to the issue of entitled fans demanding that their whims be catered to -- and when they're not, punishing creators with stalking, online bullying, threats, doxxing, and even lesser things like the way Vox Day and his flying monkeys tried to rig the Hugos.
    They take issue with it because they have an issue with WHO is bringing in that money.

    You don't think there are folks mad about Black Panther's billion and position as the number one solo hero movie? Don't be shocked if you hear about tickets being bought for Deadpool or the next Batman or Superman movie in a ploy to get a higher box office to bypass Black Panther.

    And why does this stuff seem to target certain groups?

    Folks threw fits about the female GHostbusters-why was the main target Leslie Jones? Not Melissa McCarthy-who had how many new movies after that?
    Or Fantastic Four-only Jordan got the abuse and yes folks feared shootings at his movie-Creed.
    Before Ms Rose-the main target of hate was John Boyega in Star Wars-the same guy whose toys sold out first for both films. Something that is repeating with Donald Glover's Lando.
    The Kyle hate is now passed on to John Stewart and lesser Simon & Jessica. Funny how the success of Justice League cartoon meant NOTHING to those who hated John yet there was praise for Booster Gold's episode and new interest in him.
    Same with the SJW Marvel-if one has an issue with unsold Moon Girl books (which should be what for most stores 2 issues?) Where is the rage for the unsold Solo and various white guys books that failed? If the goal is selling books why is it acceptable for a large pile of unsold Peter Parker books that pack a bin versus small piles of Ms Marvel or Moon Girl.
    I did not see a Moon Girl book in a bin until issue 25.

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    Quote Originally Posted by skyvolt2000 View Post
    That's fine. However all this other nonsense needs to stop.

    The first three movies, TFA and droids and ewoks cartoons are the only Star Wars stuff I have seen. I am not going to throw a fit over the stuff I don't like about it.

    If I could get $200 million-Star Wars would be the LAST thing on my mind to make. Use that money for movies from some of these other companies-like Scout or Valiant.
    I agree.This behavior makes no one look good.

  10. #10
    Duly appointed enforcer of the Admin Accord Matt's Avatar
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    I do think folks need to be careful in somehow equating money/profit with quality. There have been many films that have been box office disasters (or at least not great) that went on to become classics (cult or otherwise).
    There's often a correlation between financial success and quality but by no means is it a reliable gauge. I loved that Greg inserted that image of Youngblood into the article - it started off selling amazing numbers but it was an absolutely shocking title.
    'Bayformers' made incredible box office money but was a terrible film (with each sequel becoming quickly worse) that missed the point of the Transformers franchise, while the 1986 film barely broke even (IIRC) and is still the best TF film to date.
    "Let me guess. My theories appall you, my heresies outrage you, I never answer letters, and you don't like my tie!"
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  11. #11
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    One of the factors in things like Green Lantern and Superman Red/ Blue among others is, of course, sales. I remember when Superman with the changed powers came out and even talk show hosts were talking about it, saying things like, "That's not the Superman I remember". As one DC editor put it, that's exactly it, "That you remember". In other words, when was the last time you actually bought a Superman comic? When was the last time you were talking about Superman on your show? The same with Green Lantern. Besides, I thought it was clear that things like that version of Superman or Hal as the villain was going to be temporary.

    When I was a kid, I loved the Hal Jordan GL. Nowadays, I prefer the Jessica and Simon GL's and I really liked the Kyle Raynor GL. A lot of that has to do with the fact that I was getting tired of the old "completely immune to fear" nonsense. Oh, so you were born without a nervous system? That's amazing.

    But the main point is the sense of entitlement that someone thinks they have the right to harass and threaten people just because something they found entertaining takes a turn they don't like- or for any reason. As pointed out, the anonymity of the Internet has everything to do with that. In bygone decades, a reader would just go to school and complain to his friends or just stop buying the comic. But now, he can start a holy war on the Internet.

    The irony is how small these things really are. If you're involved in it, especially if you're the person being harassed, it's a big thing. But I was avidly reading comics in those days and had no awareness that this GL war was even happening.
    Superman was a beacon to the world.

  12. #12
    Fantastic Member kjn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Powerboy View Post
    But the main point is the sense of entitlement that someone thinks they have the right to harass and threaten people just because something they found entertaining takes a turn they don't like- or for any reason. As pointed out, the anonymity of the Internet has everything to do with that. In bygone decades, a reader would just go to school and complain to his friends or just stop buying the comic. But now, he can start a holy war on the Internet.
    I'm not sure the anonymity is the main reason. I believe privilege is far more important. Western society has an ingrained tendency to belittle and downplay harassment aimed at queer people, women, disabled people, non-white* people, and so on, and at the same time react aggressively or harshly against non-privileged people speaking up (when they get noticed).

    Anonymity does play a part, but my impression is that the Internet act as an enabler partly since it is psychologically easier to strip away the face from the people being harassed, partly because makes it much easier to find and form groups with shared interests or vales.

    * Your definition of non-white may vary.

  13. #13
    Duly appointed enforcer of the Admin Accord Matt's Avatar
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    This story just appeared of my Twitter feed and I believe it's very relevant to the topic.

    https://twitter.com/ahmedbest/status...22723764162561
    "Let me guess. My theories appall you, my heresies outrage you, I never answer letters, and you don't like my tie!"
    @Matt_of_Geek

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