Fanboy or Fascist?

"What the box office success of the re-released Special Editions told Hollywood is that the only way to create another global phenomenon is to make a new STAR WARS movie. 1997 was the start of the modern-day fanboy/geek culture that now runs Hollywood. Fanboy culture (Comic-Con, Harry Potter, Twilight, The Hunger Games, The Lord of the Rings, J.J. Abrams, Joss Whedon, Marvel comics, Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, Glee, Aint-It-Cool-News, Attack of the Show) is a groupthink mentality that claims to be democratic, what with its we-know-what’s-best-because-we’re-fans ethic, but is really pop culture fascism. And it’s the fans’ demand (remember, fan is short for fanatic), that led to Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace — the most hyped (and possibly most reviled) blockbuster in movie history." [Some Came Running]


  • Patrick Hallstein / McEvoy-Halston says:

    So I guess you're safe to praise a film everyone agrees you're supposed to hate, so long as you make clear you're lowering your expectations to George Bush-level in order to do so (He's damning the American audience, fandom, but in playing to it, also showing respect for their collective judgment as well -- strange). But then to follow by talking of a film's precision, tactile quality, patience, elegance, and stateliness ... Please, you're making clear that in appreciating it you've shown your resources are cerebral Obama or Clinton-level, not Bush-level debased. From this piece, it is a bit difficult to believe that who this critic is right now would actually prefer the first Star Wars (1977) over the second-millenium sequels ... He actually seems something of a Hugo man.

    Fandom is aggressive and totalitarian (though I'm a John Deweyite as well); but on the other side there are types that want them to be that way so their own club becomes that much more clearly delineated: THEY, reckless emotion; THEMSELVES, the centered mind. I am however glad that some of the directors he mentioned are happy with fandom-type films -- directors like Abrams and Jackson, who perhaps have a different take than this critic on emotive close-ups and emotional "excess." With this, in fact, I still find them doing what I think most essential for new ground to be broken.

  • The Winchester says:

    I disagree slightly (and in knee-jerk reaction having just read this snippet), mostly because the TRUE fanboys aren't even going to the movies anymore.

    A lot of product that we're given is a result of studios THINKING this is what the fanboys want, but plenty of other people are seeing these films and making them huge hits. Fanboys give films large opening weekends, but general public (or, you know, decent filmmaking in some cases) keeps the normal folks coming in. If fanboy nation was keeping films afloat, then Kick Ass and Scott Pilgrim would've been much $200 million grossers.

    Fanboys may have brought about the first Transformers movie, but their derision towards all 3 of the films doesn't explain the billion dollar grosses.

    • j'accuse! says:

      Oh, fans. I've read through the comments section on AICN and...nevermind...staying positive...wonder if I can keep this up all Lent...

      • S.T. VanAirsdale says:

        Hahaha, I love the idea of you giving up comment negativity for Lent. I wish I could give up the Internet entirely.

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