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I promise, I'll write some more Shifts soon, possibly tonight. But… - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
I promise, I'll write some more Shifts soon, possibly tonight. But I still have SW perking in my brain.

As much as I love SW and as long as I've been a fan, I have to say, man--SW fan wankiness puts the wankiness of any other fandom in perspective. Just try to imagine the loudest voices in HP fandom saying, "Jo Rowling should turn the enterprise over to Steve Kloves! He understands the story of Harry Potter loads better than she does!" Or "Philosopher's Stone was good and Chamber of Secrets was even better, but when she started messing with Harry's parents in Prisoner of Azkaban, she RUINED THE WHOLE DAMNED THING!!!"

Now, there may be one or two, but the press pays no attention to them. In SW, equivalent statements are screamed at the top of the lungs of a fairly small minority of fans, and reported in the press as if they're the opinion of all fandom, which encourages them to scream even louder. And then assert that they are, in fact, the true fans, since they aren't gullible enough to actually like the movies of which they are fans.

I partly blame this on the press, which encourages it in its usual chop down the tall poppies approach to life. I mean, fans aren't hard to find. I've had a website up for years, and it's been reported on in the Star Wars insider. There was a movement to put up little "I support Lucas" icons for awhile, which was also not hard to trace. But I haven't met any of the more prominent fans--who are again, NOT HARD TO FIND--who's been contacted by the press for an interview about what's so bloody brilliant, and the few times I've seen an article with a comment from a fan included among the bashers, he's always presented as a lone, weak voice, often saying something fairly non-committal about the movies themselves, while the bashers pick apart individual lines and scenes that, for some reason, have hit their crazy buttons. Which of course hits my crazy button and sends me ranting to LJ, but of course, no one from the press calls to ask me why I'm frothing at the mouth like a rabid chihuahua.
41 comments or Leave a comment
ladylisse From: ladylisse Date: September 27th, 2004 05:29 pm (UTC) (Link)
Star Wars fandom scares the hell out of me. I mostly smile and nod and back away from the crazy. Especially the sense-of-entitlement kind of crazy. You can like or hate the movies all you like, but Lucas doesn't have to listen to you, people.

...I want the DVDs, damnit.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: September 27th, 2004 05:32 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oh, yeah. There's an article on boxofficemojo today--a rare admission that Lucas owns his property and it's social bullying at best to try to force him to compromise his art. And one of the responses said, essentially, that it was like finding a cure for AIDS, and if the person who did that tried to keep it to himself it would be immoral.

What the--?
silverhill From: silverhill Date: September 27th, 2004 05:38 pm (UTC) (Link)
And then assert that they are, in fact, the true fans, since they aren't gullible enough to actually like the movies of which they are fans.

*dies laughing*
mafdet From: mafdet Date: September 27th, 2004 05:51 pm (UTC) (Link)
There are times when I believe that the HP fandom is the wankiest of the wanky, but reading this puts it in perspective. Since I'm not in SW fandom, I will take your word for it.

I enjoy the SW movies, but that's about it. I think the only thing that really put my teeth on edge was Jar Jar Binks.

The only fandom that I'm in besides Harry Potter is the Earth's Children (Jean M. Auel's Clan of the Cave Bear and its sequels). For the about six or so years I've been active as a fan (have enjoyed the books since they came out, though)I can count the wanksplosions on the fingers of one hand. It helps that the fandom is tiny, but it just doesn't seem to attract the batshittery that is part of some other fandoms.
azaelia_culnamo From: azaelia_culnamo Date: September 27th, 2004 08:02 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, we've done pretty well, although I do think part of it is that nobody liked the movie.

I think the HP fandom is pretty messed up; It's definitely not what it used to be. I actually am posting the sequel to my first finished, multi-chaptered HP fic on ec, and I posted that there too. Why ecfans, when its not a HP site? Because I felt it was the only place that wouldn't immediately go "ew, OC's".

(If anyone is wondering, ecfans.com is the fansite for the series, pretty much, and it does allow fics for other fandoms, provided the authors allow it).
ladyaeryn From: ladyaeryn Date: September 27th, 2004 05:56 pm (UTC) (Link)
If SW was the only fandom that ever existed, fandom_wank could still keep burning for years just on its wank alone. A more wretched hive of scum and villainy, indeed. ;) The media - after the endless bitching following both TPM and AotC I've gotten to the point where I actively avoid the media in terms of SW (unless it's a positive article someone I know has recommended), and will continue that avoidance until well after RotS is released. I spent three years at TFN and have no desire to have a similar experience again, thanks.

You seen this comic that lazypadawan posted about in her journal? Have to admit, it brought a little self-satisfied smile to my face. ;)
chickadilly From: chickadilly Date: September 27th, 2004 06:12 pm (UTC) (Link)
Ya know the sad thing is that this isn't anything new. I can remember the arguments between Luke and Han fans back in the days of fanzines ...

Which is about as stupid as Harry and Ron fans fighting, after all they are all friends afterall.
vytresna From: vytresna Date: September 27th, 2004 06:08 pm (UTC) (Link)
Most of the Star Wars fans I've talked to are prequel-bashers, actually. Me, I'm just a TPM-basher, which makes the Terry Brooks novelization a godsend, but they may just be joining my choir. The SW intra-fandom fights are fierce.

Actually, the best script was A New Hope, but a close second was Empire Strikes Back, which was not written by Lucas. So the replacement is considerably above Steve Kloves caliber. Still, such arguments give me a headache - I've never seen anyone say it on an understanding level, but on a plot choice level, or, more minorly, a word choice level.
sreya From: sreya Date: September 27th, 2004 06:32 pm (UTC) (Link)
Meh, SW wank....

You know, for a while it was almost a little fun -- I'll admit I was a diehard member of the Mara Jade Haters Club for a while. But you burn out so fast, I really don't understand all the people who keep going and going and going -- it's like they're Dark Side Energizer bunnies or something. (Hmm, that'd make an interesting icon!!!)

Now, I tend to just stick with the fanfic stuff. That's usually a little calmer at least. Besides, for the next nine months, I can't hang out on mainstream boards for fear of spoilers, anyway.

And I'm a total Lucas fan! Even if I don't always understand his decisions, they're HIS decisions, and when the overall product is THIS good, hey, I'm not one to complain!
chienar From: chienar Date: September 27th, 2004 06:43 pm (UTC) (Link)
you know, I like star wars, always have. I remember seeing it in the theaters, on the original release, before it was called A New Hope, or Episode IV... but even though I had a Han Solo doll (much cooler than Ken, imho), I was just never really all that into it. I -like- the changes to the originals, I think it makes them all tie together better.

And I'm just dying for more Shifts =)

equustel From: equustel Date: September 27th, 2004 06:59 pm (UTC) (Link)
This is why I actually took a hiatus from SW fandom for a whole year and a half - didn't visit any sites associated with it, save for the OS, since I was (and am) a Hyperspace subscriber. You've no idea how refreshing that was - no snide remarks or unwanted opinions hindering my enjoyment of anything and everything Star Wars. And really, offline in the real world, most people I talked to make no distinction between the two trilogies, which made me realize how blown out of proportion online fandom really is. It's only with the DVDs out now that I've started eyeing a couple of fan communities again.

I guess with any major fandom comes the inevitable wank (I had to search and search and search just to find a sane Matrix site when that fixation reared its head)... but Star Wars fans definitely take the cake.
azaelia_culnamo From: azaelia_culnamo Date: September 27th, 2004 07:57 pm (UTC) (Link)
The sad thing is, I never even realized the SW movies are book based until about a year ago. I'd assumed that the books were from the movie, instead of the other way around. Isn't that just sick?
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: September 27th, 2004 08:14 pm (UTC) (Link)
The Star Wars movies aren't from books (except for the fictitious books, the Journal of the Whills, which is rather like the Red Book of the Westmarch). They were screenplays and movies.
From: 88l71 Date: September 28th, 2004 05:52 am (UTC) (Link)
I partly blame this on the press, which encourages it in its usual chop down the tall poppies approach to life.>>

Except they didn't seem to treat Peter Jackson the same way, despite the popularity of the LOTR films....I wonder why they have it in for SW/GL in particular.

I think the Han/Luke thing reminds me of Obi/Ani in the prequels...some people tend to believe you cannot possibly like both characters, albeit for different reasons.

fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: September 28th, 2004 06:44 am (UTC) (Link)
Well, there is the matter of Lucas walking out on the directors' guild and the writers' guild--people don't forgive that easily.
buffyannotater From: buffyannotater Date: September 28th, 2004 08:19 am (UTC) (Link)
selenak sent me here, because I'm currently waging an epic prequel-defending battle in my LJ, too! The same frustrations you're talking about here inspired me to post this list a few days back in my journal:

1) I couldn't care less who shot first. I think that people who do care should chill out.

2) I love the prequels. No, make that adore the prequels.

3) I adore Return of the Jedi.

4) I was never that into Boba Fett.

5) I like the Ewoks.

6) If given the choice, I would watch the new versions of the old Star Wars films. There, I said it. And that doesn't make me any less of a fan.

7) A lot of Star Wars fans irritate me.

8) A lot of Star Wars fans scare me.

9) I don't think the concept of "midichlorians" contradicts the mythology from the original trilogy in the least.

10) I don't think that liking Star Wars and Star Trek are mutually exclusive.
may_child From: may_child Date: September 28th, 2004 02:33 pm (UTC) (Link)
And then assert that they are, in fact, the true fans, since they aren't gullible enough to actually like the movies of which they are fans.

ROTFL!!! I wish they gave out Pulitzer Prizes for online journal comments...

To paraphrase lazypadawan from her own Live Journal, the fanwank follows you everywhere, like bad B.O. I was sitting in my friggin' car, listening to the radio at a stoplight, thinking nothing of it, and what do you know...the deejay reads an e-mail from some wank which went something like this: "What's getting lost in all the publicity over the 'Star Wars' DVDs is that these are not the original versions but the versions George Lucas ruined."

Even leaving aside the usual wank hyperbole (i.e., "ruined"), where the h-e-double-hockey-sticks has this person been if they think that it's gotten "lost" that these are not the so-called "originals"? Every single stinkin' item I have seen, read, or heard about the DVDs has mentioned that these are not the so-called "originals," usually either right before or right after a claim about how widely despised the SEs and the prequels are.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: September 28th, 2004 04:12 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think that's the problem--they're freaking insane.
lannamichaels From: lannamichaels Date: September 28th, 2004 02:52 pm (UTC) (Link)
I put it down to the inherant wankiness of the fandom. But jeez. No one wanks like Star Wars wanks.
lyras From: lyras Date: September 28th, 2004 02:57 pm (UTC) (Link)


Scuse the interruption - this is not really about your post (although the Star Wars fandom sounds both hilarious and infuriating!).

I just wanted to say that I worked my way through the existing chapters of Shifts over the weekend and was really impressed by your characterisation (esp. Lupin and Sirius) and the way you've woven a great plot into the existing OOTP narrative. I'm looking forward to seeing more!

From: a_p_ Date: September 28th, 2004 06:15 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'm definitely in a considerably rant-y mood tonight. Forgive me.

SW wank is inevitable, unavoidable, inexorable. It took me way too long to finally accept that -- I stayed at TF.n much longer than any remotely normal person should, and spent quite a lot of time looking for other discussion communities (I love mine, but I'd love to just be a member somewhere else) to essentially no avail.

I have ALWAYS meant for my boards to be free of this crap, and I don't mean to toot my own horn, but I am proud that my forums are active, intelligent, friendly, and actually full of actual SW fans. No bashing or bashers allowed. And it will stay that way as long as I can afford to keep it going, despite the whining cries of the oppressed bashers -- "But it's mmmmmyyyyy opppiiinnniiiioonnn!!!" "You can't bar me from your board just because I don't like 4 out of the 6 mooovvvvviiiieeesss!!"

Hell, yes I can!

Oh, and yes, somehow my forums will soldier on even with everyone daring to all agree on the fact that we love the SW saga! I love the idea, and equally whiny cry, that bashers are oh-so-needed in SW communities to provide the sacred "difference of opinion" that supposedly makes all discussion worthwhile. Well, gee, forgive me for wanting to just discuss the movies and not defend them against nit-picky entitled-obsessed so-called "fans." And I might be crazy, but somehow, I find that on a board where everyone loves SW and generally shares the same views on Anakin in particular, we have wonderful, fun, and insightful discussions, and have for years.

I think if bashers ever realized that they're neither needed nor wanted it would break their collective psyches worse than the equally-huge realization that you can't be a fan of something you hate the majority of, and that whining, bitching, and moaning about it is just an aggravating waste of everyone's time.

Whew! I feel better. ;)
may_child From: may_child Date: September 28th, 2004 08:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
Amen, a-p!

Your board is like an oasis from the wank. I've seen many a board that was supposed to be an alternative to the wank that permeates TF.N eventually fall victim to it, but your board remains wank-free.
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