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WTF, Supernatural fandom?
15 have spoken ♥ :: Speak to me?
ex_naye320 From: ex_naye320 Date: October 7th, 2006 10:31 am (UTC) (Link)

Reply the first

I know you're sane, neechan. ♥ And it's good you're playing devil's advocate, because that give me a reason to get this off my chest. And I need it off my chest!

Because, see, the promblem here is - again - that the reactions I see have very little to do with writing and how a character is presented, and everything to do with the character herself! There's so much hate out there, and what I find isn't exactly indicating that the majority of fangirls are thinking about it your way. To sum it up, I give you the following reaction, garnered from one of the many threads I've picked through:

*writes "Property of the Fangirls" on Dean's forehead*

Yeah. Like that. See? That is what's pissing me off. It's even worse than how the writers are presenting the charcters, because so many other things fans just forgive instantly, but a female? A female gets these insane reactions.

If the reaction she garnered was a discussion on the topics you brought up - on why are female characters seemingly always written as female first, and character second? Why must a character be introduced as a "love interest" simply because she's female? Why the hell are we not seeing any female hunters, why can't they just write characters with the same depth no matter what their gender? (I think Supernatural is doing pretty well in terms of BotWs, but looking at how often women need rescuing or relationships, compared to how the men just need their Hunt - that gets to me, in the end.) But, again - when Jo is discussed, it's not in terms of how she's presented, it's how they hate the character, how much they dislike the actress, how they hate anything and everything about her. And that leaves me feeling vaguely sick to my stomach, because with that much hate, you could write frickin' Buffy (or Ivanova, or Nico Robin), have ZERO romantic interest, and people would still hate her if Dean as much as looked at her. I mean, people are hating on Ellen too, because she might stick around. Because she might have had an affair with John. And while I was only mildly impressed by Jo, I really liked Ellen.

And when the threads full of hate are all from before Jo is even introduced? Um. Now fandom is scaring me again. Again - if it was couched in terms of "why must the writers present us with a female character in this way?" it would be easier for me to swallow (still think it's stupid to get that worked up about something we haven't seen anything of yet, but that's just me), but it's all about how some "stupid whiney chick" can't be right for Dean, and how she's an evil whore for stealing precious screen time from the boys. I found one example here - someone linked to transcripts from Jo's blog, posted before the episode aired. That's what I came to read, and then I saw the comments and - the kind of rage I saw there is ususally accompanied by frothing at the mouth, possibly after having been bitten by wild dogs. I'd just read the diary/blog entries thinking that maybe they should have worked a bit harder on making some of the stuff sound like it was written by a kid, but that a lot of it was what I can imagine I would've written if I was growing up like she did, and that Jo sounded pretty cool... It wasn't a literary masterpiece, but I don't see where people are getting the "snot-nosed brat who deserves to be beaten" reaction from. Except from this one fact - they don't want any female character to stick around, with the possible exception of Missouri, because there there's no chance of one of the boys hooking up with her. As far as I can see, it's maybe 10% "uh, I don't think they're handling this character very well", and the rest is "BITCH TAKE YOUR HANDS OFF DEAN!".
xparrot From: xparrot Date: October 8th, 2006 03:12 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Reply the first

But, again - when Jo is discussed, it's not in terms of how she's presented, it's how they hate the character, how much they dislike the actress, how they hate anything and everything about her.

I realized I didn't address this point exactly (or if I did I forget ^^;;) Fangirls don't always discuss things in terms of how a char is presented, any more than we write off all plot holes as writer errors - we tend to attempt to justify them in canon, to preserve the fictional reality of the series, and fangirls hating on a char are doing the same thing. I don't think that's necessarily a less relevant way to criticize a text; if anything, inspiring emotional rather than intellectual reaction is ultimately a compliment to a work of fiction...

Hating on the actress is straying toward wack-job territory, but I usually see that kind of thing in the younger end of the fan pool, and kids are more prone to confuse reality and fiction. Most adult fen, though they might carry the hate, limit it to the char; they might decry an actor's abilities, but I've rarely seen them wish actual harm on someone just for playing a disliked char...
ex_naye320 From: ex_naye320 Date: October 8th, 2006 09:17 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Reply the first

You know, you have a really good point there! I hadn't actually thought of it that way, being too busy running away screaming... But it makes sense. And as long as it's just manifested as that kind of thing, I'll... do my best to deal, I guess.

What I still can't stand is the "hate-clubs". I remember there was one for David Duchovny's wife - she was an actress or a model or something, and again with the creepy scary fandom which was not just the kids. But. Hating in moderation I can at least kind of understand, if not agree with.
15 have spoken ♥ :: Speak to me?