Tag Archives: cosplay

Character Flaws and Flawed Characters

I’d say most, if not all of us have fictional characters we can’t stand in the pop culture we love. Some characters just have personalities that grate on us, their flaws, or what we see as their flaws, too grating for us to take.

I say “what we see as their flaws” because, no matter how hard an author or creator tries to demonstrate a character as objectively flawed or no matter how strongly culture objects to and hates a character, it seems there will always be those out there who understand and defend that character’s actions. What may be seen as a horrific violation of societal norms by some, might be seen by others as the result of victimization by the same society. Continue reading

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The Pros and Cons of Pop Culture Binges

Oh, you liked that show/movie you watched a month ago? Too bad; it's gone now.

Oh, you liked that show/movie you watched a month ago? Too bad; it’s gone now.

If you’ve been paying attention to the news over the past few years, you may have noticed the pundits/anchors/news-type people discussing the recent-ish phenomenon of “binge-watching” on TV shows.  I’m not linking to any, but feel free to google “TV binging.” (I’m not sure how whether it’s spelled “binging” or “bingeing” as I’ve found both in use). I found articles written just a few days ago on the subject.

So, what is TV bing(e)ing? Well, according to my dictionary app, bing(e)ing is to:

indulge in an activity, esp. eating, to excess: some dieters say theycannot help binging on chocolate | (as noun binging) : her secret binging and vomiting.

I’ll assume you know what television is. Continue reading

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Too Popular Culture? Exclusivity In Fandom

So, it’s apparently “geek week” on YouTube, and, as yet another indication that geekdom has become more acceptable to the general public arises, I can’t help but contemplate certain…territorial tendencies of those geeks who are now seeing their passions gain wide-spread acceptance.

Take for example this meme, which, as some may recall, caused a small uproar last year.But seriously, what the hell is a gigawatt?

But seriously, what the hell is a gigawatt?                       (Image from Know Your Meme)

Oh, hello “Idiot Nerd Girl.” (And, no, the whole post isn’t going to be about this, nor am I going to subject you to my 20+ academic page paper on this subject.) Continue reading

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Problems With Representation Part 2: Gender

The pre-Merida lineup of "Disney Princesses"

The pre-Merida lineup of “Disney Princesses”

Let me begin this post with a note. I know representation is tricky. For a really good perspective on the challenges of choosing to represent non-white/straight/male characters, check out this blog post by Lindsay Ellis AKA Nostalgia Chick.

That being said, I hate that Disney made Mulan a “Disney Princess,” and not just because the character is in no way a princess. You see, Mulan holds a very special place in my heart, and Disney decided to rip that special place out of my chest, examine it, and then shred it to pieces because it didn’t fit their marketing strategy.

Edit: For the sake of this post, I’m only discussing Mulan and company as female characters. Disney’s issues with race and non-American cultures is another issue. Continue reading

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Fan Fiction: Is It As Bad As They Say It Is?

Before I grew up and discovered the seductive draw of sitting in front of television for entertainment, I loved to read.  Being a relatively introverted and anti-social person (just to perpetuate that geek stereotype further), books let me meet new people and go to new places without having to enter into the scary world of real people.

So, it was perhaps inevitable that my introduction to fandom would come through fan fiction.

In many circles, “fan fiction” has become a dirty term.  Fan fiction these days tends to be thought of solely as poorly-written, smut-filled wish-fulfillment that leaches off of better works by better writers. (I may have abused hyphens in that sentence…) . Continue reading

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What is Fandom?

Fandom (consisting of fan [fanatic] plus the suffix -dom, as in kingdom, freedom, etc.) is a term used to refer to a subculture composed of fans characterized by a feeling of sympathy and camaraderie with others who share a common interest. Fans typically are interested in even minor details of the object(s) of their fandom and spend a significant portion of their time and energy involved with their interest, often as a part of a social network with particular practices (a fandom); this is what differentiates “fannish” (fandom-affiliated) fans from those with only a casual interest.

Wikipedia

I can’t remember when I first heard the term “fandom.”  I know it was sometime before I graduated high school, but, other than that, I really can’t say.  What I do know, is that, the moment I first heard the word, I knew exactly what it described. Fandom is the world I had become familiar with in middle school, it is the community of people who not only don’t shun you for your somewhat obsessive commitment to learning all there is to know about Lord of the Rings, but embrace you for it.  It is the community where, instead of receiving a cacophony of eye-rolls when you explain, again, that retconning Star Wars so Han no longer shoots first is a fundamental betrayal of the character, they respond with a passionate, “I know, right?” Continue reading

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