The Death and Rebirth of “Fandom”

For quite a while now, we have been watching the anime fandom take a turn for the worse. Now, before I begin, I would just like to say that I don’t intend to persecute anyone as I write this. Far from it, actually. Rather, I simply wish to call on you, dear audience to assist me in rebuilding “fandom” and restoring it to glorious life. So, that being said, do not take this as libel or slander. Rather, hear me out and listen as I discuss the ongoing in-fighting and online warfare that is currently being waged by those desperately clinging to the last vestiges of what they see as “deep anime”, or rather, what they personally see as “deep anime”, against those they blame for the supposed “death” of anime.

First, I will have to speak of early exposure of modern western audiences to anime. In the beginning, we didn’t get much. It was mostly either whatever could make it to kids’ networks over here or particularly violent action shows. When audiences got their first taste of Dragon Ball Z, Gundam, and Ghost in the Shell, they absolutely loved these shows. This is where they went wrong. Before I continue, I must first clarify that I do not think they are watching the wrong shows, nor do I believe they had bad taste. Certainly not. They simply got the wrong idea about anime. They started to believe that these shows represented the medium as a whole. However, the truth was that these shows were simply one part of a larger industry.

Over the years, anime localization has started to become more varied since then. More efficient, faster, and increasing in variety of titles. In particular, we are now becoming more exposed in particular, to elements such as cute girls, easygoing stories, and light-hearted humor that, together, have become known as “moe”. While some fines happily embraced this aspect of the medium with open arms, others did not.

Opponents of moe view it as a threat, so to speak. Because they did not know this aspect existed in anime, they deny that it did, and treat as a new thing and decried this ‘change” as a sign that they will eventually no longer see the types of anime they enjoy be made. A misconception created by willful ignorance. If this was the extent of their reaction, it could have been ignored. However, they did not stop there. They would go on to target the consumers of moe with ridicule, insults, and personal attacks.

From that point on, the “Anti-Moe Brigade” was born. The “Anti-Moe Brigade” is a collection of ideas that moe is a cancer that needs to be purged from anime and that consumers of moe are enemies to be mocked, insulted, and most of all, feared. Supporters of moe are labeled with such “glamorous” terms as “pedophiles”, “virgins”, and “basement dwellers”. Diagnoses of autism and aspergers are used as insults. The ultimate form of deliberate ableism. These attitudes could not be more gross and uncivil, and embody many of the problems described by Timeenforceranubis in his blog, She’s Lost Control Media, as well as the podcasts, NTR Radio and Otaku Midnight(formerly Podcast Zero). These problems also embody the “death”, for lack of a better term, of the anime “fandom”.

Now that the death of “fandom”, Let us talk about what can be done to restore fandom. It will be a long, difficult process. One that will require the effort of every willing anime fan to succeed. But it will also be a rewarding one.

The first step is to start addressing online warfare by its name, and start condemning it as the disgusting misconduct that it really is. We need more people fighting against online warfare. More people like Timenforceranubis, Kgods, and drawingirl94. We need more people who recognize warmongers for what they really are.

We will also need a lot more positivity in the community. As Timeenforceranubis has said, negativity is on the way out. We need to start looking optimistically to the future and quit with the cynicism. It’s time to say goodbye to pessimism, because nobody wants to hear from a doubting Thomas. Let’s can the insults and profanity and start being excellent to each other. Love makes the world go round, as the old saying goes.

We must afford no credibility to the notion that a certain group of people are consuming the “wrong” entertainment. There is no such thing as the wrong entertainment because entertainment is a purely subjective concept based in personal preference.

Well, there you have it. Three easy(?) steps to restoring “fandom”. It may seem difficult at first, but that is most likely because you have not done enough to help yet.

-Dan Bordelon, Jr.

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17 Comments

  1. The problem for a lot of people, not all, is that it’s not “consuming the wrong entertainment” that they talk about. It’s WHO’S consuming it.

    some people who consume Moe entertainment, are very easily disillusioned by society. They’re lead by society to view themselves as inferior, if they’re men, and they don’t bat an eye to anything that could be considered misandrist.

    Many people who consume moe, especially those who’re Yuri fanatics as well, will spend much time referring to anything not female as generic by gender alone. You put them in front of a commercial about a man being beaten up on by a woman, and they either laugh or just say he must be one hell of an ass.

    Put them in front of a man slapping a woman in defense of himself when the woman has a knife, and they question the man more than the woman, even if it was quite obvious that the man was only defending himself. They’ll raise a hellfire up for a man even once being portrayed as the better in a relationship but refuse to question the exact opposite.

    This is an example of why people lose faith in communities. Because they become so poisoned by society that they either only care to watch something they want to fuck, or something they are lead to believe should be pedestalled as superior to them.

    Ever seen the AmazingAtheist? Astronomical douche bag. But there was one video that had him doing a skit where he was being forced by his “radical feminist” parents to whip himself while saying “I’m sorry I’m male! I’m sorry I’m white!”.

    while that kind of thing is not for all people, if you go on places and forums and the majority of its male population is always talking down to any male character but saying how they love a generic mary sue in a series and how she’s awesome, despite how generic she is, they might actually spend their time doing that.

    If a community is to change, they first must be re-educated on what equates to quality.

    Too many people are equating a vagina to quality writing. They need to be taught about literature and why it can either be bad or good.

    They need to be more educated on things like references and not only on using them but how to use them properly. Many people who play the Neptunia series would not even once question the usage of a reference made by them because they have raised themselves to think a reference is all it takes to be funny and good. Now the series can be funny. But you should at least try to see the reference mess ups here and there. Like places they don’t belong.

    Another thing to re-educate them on is where they should and shouldn’t find good character development.

    Neptune in the Neptunia series is an example of good development that I was told about, but sadly was disappointed with. In MK2 she starts lazy and then grows is what I was told. However playing MK2 and Rebirth 2 leads me to see that in the end she never did really change. She’s just as lazy and irresponsible before considering how she still won’t even try to do a single bit of work.

    Another thing people need to learn is that quirk doesn’t equal good writing. It’s a small part. VERY small. I’ve seen people praise Neptunia has some holy grail of writing yet they’ll dis something as well written as the “Killing Joke” from Batman has mediocre garbage. Because for one, Batman’s a guy. And two, not enough “quirk”.

    All in all, I think the problem with the moe community lies more in the people who eat it up more than needed. They spend too much time and are disillusioned by media.

      • I really don’t see why any of that should matter to you. Quality entertainment is a purely subjective concept by definition. If it isn’t hurting anyone, then it is not your place to judge anybody based on their preference in entertainment. Why should someone be judged for liking moe when you wouldn’t want anyone to judge you for liking Batman?

      • Isn’t hurting anyone? These commercials with these “messages” fuel radical Feminism. A controversial concept that leads to problems like women who work at Burger King taking advantage of their gender to harrass pro abortion men just because they disagree.

        There’s a reason women say things like all men are more naturally inclined to rape just because they’re men.

        And there’s tons of women who abuse them because they don’t realize the idiocy of taking advantage of their gender.

        Have you not been on the internet? Youtube shows tons of physical violence by women towards men who are being harrassed.

        Notice the issue?

        They learn this stuff. Not just from parents. But from places like Tumblr. And anime societies are no different. They’re human. And while you may not take it to heart when you see a man getting beaten by his tsundere love interest just for nothing, those other ones do. And they let it reinforce the idea that it’s okay to be a man and be beaten by women for nothing. They think that it’s supposed to be that way. Maybe to society. But to the REAL world? The world where you need to stop people from harming you? No. These societies of anime fans are WAY too dissilusioned to know what’s right and wrong.

        And these commercials are also glorifying women and defaming the male gender. As if it’s naturally wrong to be born a man. Subconsciously these messages, through the coordination of the filmed scenes, have an adverse effect on a persons psyche.

        There are people who watch those commercials, and are brainwashed by them. Then they get more brainwashed by their own kind. People brainwashed by those commercials and messages shown on TV. Then they watch anime with the mindset that’s set to actively increase that thinking the more they have all of these series.

        A mindset that’s set to worship the female race. In ways it shouldn’t be. Ways that devalue a man for not being female. Take a look at 4chan. Tons of em on there. There’s more than you can imagine that actually think like that. The only thing keeping them in line IRL is the law to a degree. But even then they try and test it to see what they can get away with.

        There’s a reason that MRA exist. Now whether the kind we have today are as bad or worse is debatable. But the fact is, that life took a turn in a way that had to give birth to a group about protectign mens rights. Because society of all sorts continues a diseased mind set that’s set for women to overuse their privilege given by society, for women to overestimate a mans privilege, and for men set to devalue themselves purposefully.

      • Then you just can’t or don’t want to drop this notion of female perfection. If you drive the stake into any anime that has a man doing what the average female does to a man in anime, but to a woman, but laugh at the stypical male bashing, then what is that supposed to say? Persona preference? No. It speaks of an undeveloped personal preference.

      • I’m going to explain to you slowly. Nobody is required to see things your way. I’m not saying that women are inherently superior to men. You are putting words into my mouth that I did not say. Furthermore, at no point in the article did I ever say anything about gender. You were the first person to bring that up. All I ever did was call out online warfare and other problematic behaviors, which you are actively trying to defend while pushing your own agenda on me. I tried to end this discussion, but you don’t seem to want to do that.

  2. No. I called out a hypocrisy of many people involved in the war and why it’s not the entertainment that people actively hate. Some do. But more often than not they hate the people consuming it. Because these people are all hypocritical and actively seeking the destruction of other genres. Such as the harem ecchi genre.

    • Do you even see the stuff you type? Just because someone doesn’t like what you like doesn’t mean they’re worthy of hate. They don’t deserve the unwarranted, and sometimes ableist, slander that is lobbed their way. They’re certainly not out to take away your non-moe entertainment. Learn to see the other perspective, and not your twisted, inaccurate version of the other perspective, before judging others based on their preference of entertainment. Attitudes like yours are the reason we have these conversations. Not everyone is either for you or against you. Now, if you insist on continuing, I can elaborate further on your entertainment policing, but I would rather not deal with you anymore.

      • Then you’re not as knowledgeable about the internet as you think you are. Only ignorant people don’t realize that people who like what you like are all sunshine and butterflies. There’s a line that can be crossed before suspension of disbelief becomes utter fantasy. And you crossed that along time ago. Especially if you find it in yourself to defend what people say just because “it’s their opinion”. When someone tells me they prefer to watch moe all girl cast shows because they hate male presence and that male characters are bland by nature due to their gender, it’s not an opinion. It’s a form of disrespect on the level of racism. If a woman runs up to you and screams at you and tells you you’re a waste of your parents time for being born male, do you excuse them and tell them they’re right? Do you take a backseat to their demands and pamper their way of life?

        Or do attempt to set them straight? Just because someone likes what you like, doesn’t mean they only like what you like.

        Learn the difference between decent people who like what you like, and people who’s reasons are based on evil spirited reasons that are similar in nature racism.

      • I never said that anyone who likes what I like is inherently good. Once again, you are putting words into my mouth that I did not say! It is insulting. I have never once seen or heard a moe fan say that they watch the shows because they hate male presence. I’ve never seen or heard them say that male characters are generic because of their gender. I have never seen this “disrespect on the level of racism”. No woman has ever run up to me and screamed at me that I’m a waste of my parents’ time because I was born male. Do you base your entire worldviews on the words of a vocal minority on the internet, because that’s what it seems like. Before you start telling me how disconnected from reality I am, take a look at yourself. Go out into the real world and start actually interacting with people with some sort of effort. Your life will be much happier if you do. I did not write this article to make enemies, so let us end this discussion here.

      • I base my opinion on visual evidence and personal experience. So you’ve never seen it means it doesn’t exist or probably doesn’t Cause you’re pretty much just choosing to turn a blind eye to actual issues within the anime community. And they happen to be a powerful vocal community. So what about that skinny neckbeared I saw at Anime Matsuri 2015 who cosplayed a female and told me I’m a rapist? Because I was male and cosplaying a male. Deadpool. What about the person who at Anime Matsuri this year told me Dragon Ball Z sucks compared to K-On because there’s no cute girls and males are just a generic breed of characters?

        Personal experience speaks a lot more than Dellusional hopes and dreams.

  3. Amd if you’re trying to tell me off for complaining about people’s “opinions” then look in a mirror. You’re doing the same thing.

    What makes you any more in the right to complain? Nothing. Not when you try to use the excuse that it’s “just their opinion”.

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