First of all, I hate that term… “fangirl”. I could decide to like it anyway, because I am a fan of things and am, indeed, a girl. Except the term is usually used in a derogatory way. So, me no likey so much. Is there another term? I could decide to just call myself a fan, I guess.
This being said, for a lot of people, being a “big” fan of something can be somewhat ludicrous. As if loving something to the extent of spending time and/or money enjoying it makes us weak. Unstable. Insane.
I won’t deny the fact that some people might take their infatuation a bit too far. Those people? I’d argue that they probably have important mental issues. But most of us fans (of anything), we just appreciate some stuff more than others do.
I’m one of those. I am “infatuated” with quite a bit of stuff, I think. What can I say… when I appreciate a creator, I want to keep up with that they do. Usually in the entertainment industry.
I’m a fan of many things, to different degrees. Authors, TV Shows, and musicians are what will usually get me going. I’m not the stalker type either, not in person nor on social media, but I do like to get my hands on what they create.
I once was ashamed of what I liked and the intensity of it. Until I realized that my infatuations aren’t any different than people’s love for sporting events. Football, hockey, basketball, soccer… some will defend their favorite team(s) with a fiery passion, but THAT is apparently much more acceptable than eagerly awaiting an author’s last book or a musician’s last album.
Don’t worry, I’m not dissing sports fans here. I’m no better than they are… we’re just into different things. Same thing with people that are willing to pay top dollars to go see musical artists they like.
I guess what people often don’t really understand is how you can be “that much of a fan” when it comes to a TV show. I myself, a long time ago, did wonder about that… I mean… Trekkies? I couldn’t understand it.
Not that I get the love for Star Trek now (not that much of a fan myself), but I can certainly understand why people will get invested in TV shows. Most will just like the show and watch it on TV. Some will decide they love it enough to buy the episodes so they can watch them again eventually. Some, like me, will go just a little bit further than that.
I won’t be able to speak of those who go even further, like follow the bands around, or go to every convention they can go to, buy all the merch that comes out. It is not my level of “fan-ness”. And even if I had the money to do it, I still wouldn’t. That’s not who I am…
Let me show you what I mean.
I’ve loved many TV shows over the years, some for which I bought the DVD boxsets, like Lost, Dexter, and Six Feet Under. Nowadays, buying DVDs isn’t something I do much, mostly thanks to the different streaming services and, well, they can be quite expensive. Also, for most of the shows, I’ve never looked for anything more than what was presented to me. What I saw satisfied me and, well… I’ll admit that I haven’t watched again most of the shows I bought DVDs for. There are exceptions, of course.
Buffy The Vampire Slayer (1996-2003)
I can honestly say that this show is the first one I REALLY went all out for. It was and still is my favorite TV show ever. It was brilliant, on many fronts, except when it came to marketing, maybe. It was marketed as a teen show ( I mean, there were teens, with the first seasons set in High School), which means it will have deterred many from seeing it. I’m sad for them… I, for one, jumped in with both feet and brought my wallet with me. It was also the first time I was “confronted” to fan fiction, even though I wouldn’t have known to call it that at the time.
Supernatural (2004- )
This one takes second place, but not on the “fan” aspect. I’m a much more active fan of Supernatural than I was for Buffy (I blame the lack of Internet interest back then). It’s easy to know why… I mean, the show is still on, right about to start its 14th season. Which is twice as much as Buffy. And, unlike Buffy, I’ve gotten interested in extracurricular activities: Misha Collins’s yearly scavenger hunt, GISH (which I spoke of here); musician Jason Manns inviting some of the cast to record a Christmas album; cast members coming out with their own side projects. And then there’s fan fiction, something I’ve enjoyed reading and writing myself. Never did that for other shows.
Then, I also went to my first (and only) convention. Something like Comic Con but for Supernatural only. I mean, they came to Montreal, I HAD to go.
This movie, for some reason, shook me to the core. I loved it. I mean, John Cusack, jazz, Voodoo stuff… what’s not to like? I loved it so much that I felt the need to read John Berendt’s original book. I usually don’t read the books for the movies I’ve loved because I’m worried it will temper with my appreciation of the movie, but it didn’t. (It was the Kevin Spacey crap that deterred me from seeing it again, so thanks for that, Kev!). So, the book… marvelous. Amazing. I’ve read it more than once since buying it. But it’s not all I got hooked on because of this movie… jazz, for starters (the soundtrack is great), then getting to know Lady Chablis. Not only did I really start to enjoy jazz after seeing this movie, I also started enjoying the world of drag a whole lot.
Kevin Smith (1970- )
I know… Kevin Smith isn’t a movie. It is still the area he dwells in and I’m a fan. Which you probably knew already if you read this post from not so long ago. And how does one “fans” over a writer/director/actor/whatever? Why, by buying and watching his stuff over and over, of course. Mind you, I haven’t bought all of his movies. I kinda had to cool down on the buying stuff when I stopped working. I mean, isn’t most of everything available online anyway? (Pretty sure I could find the missing movies from my collection on Apple or something… sadly, I find they’re pretty expensive. Often enough, DVDs are much cheaper.) Anyway, I do love Kevin a whole lot. See for yourself…
Tori Amos (1963- )
Gotcha! Didn’t think I’d be talking about her, did you? (No worries, what you’re “waiting” for is coming next). I’m opening with Tori mostly because she’s the first musician I really started “following”. I would buy everything she’d come out with. And I mean EVERYTHING. Except I eventually got fed up, seeing as something would come out every six months or so. Not actual albums, not all the time, but side dishes, with new versions of the songs she had already put out. It just became too much, you know?
Don’t be mistaken, I still love her, but I’ve abandoned her after that Christmas album she did. I HATE Christmas albums. Bought it, but I still didn’t take to it. And I haven’t bought anything else since. Sometime in the last year, I decided to go into Spotify to look up what else came out. Again… a lot of album. I’ve been listening to some of it, but nothing got me the way her earlier stuff does. And it saddens me a whole lot.
Coheed and Cambria (1995- )
I know… keep talking about them. It’s not my fault, they’re an intricate part of my world. I swear, I’m not trying to brainwash you or anything. I’m only mentioning them here because not doing so would be dishonest. EVERYONE knows I’m a fan of these guys. If this post and that post aren’t enough to convince you, just take a look at the pic below!
Bernard Werber (1961- )
There’s a big chance you won’t know this author, especially if you don’t read anything in French. I honestly don’t know to which extent his work is known in other languages. I certainly hope it is, especially the earlier books. Because, yes… if I was a big fan at some point, I came to outgrow my appreciation for his work. I don’t know if he changed,
Still, I do have a fondness for his earlier work, specifically the Ants trilogy and the Angels and Gods cycles. When he collaborated on some comics, I bought those too even though I’m not a super fan of comics. And, well… I didn’t think those were all that interesting in the end. I know… I don’t sound like a fan. But I still kind of am. I’m just not a stan. Doesn’t matter how much I appreciate an artist and their work, I can say when something doesn’t work for me. Maybe someday I’ll try reading some of Bernard’s newer stuff, see if we can be friends again! 😉
Chuck Palahniuk (1962- )
Again… might not be a true fan if you consider that I haven’t bought and/or read everything he’s published over the years. Reading has been quite difficult for me in the later years, so picking up a book is not my go-to hobby. I have this one book I bought the other day, and every time I have downtime and could decide to start on it, but I don’t, already too tired to try and concentrate and read. Which is dumb seeing as it’s a bunch of short stories. So, yeah, it sounds like an excuse, especially since as I write a whole lot (considering). Somehow, writing is different because I’m “doing something”.
Reading? It’s passive and I get antsy and, well… if I don’t finish a story in a single sitting, I’ll have to read some of it back again when comes time to continue. Still, I want to buy Chuck’s books whenever I’ll have the cash to do so. And I’d love to see him once and have him sign my favorite book of his (so far, anyway): Invisible Monsters. I’m not asking for much, now am I? Funny fact: I saw and loved Fight Club before I even knew who Chuck was… and, as I said earlier, I tend to avoid reading books for the movies I loved. Which means I have yet to read it. I know I’ll love it, but what about the movie…?
• • • • •
So there you go… that’s the whole extent of my “fangirling”. The most intense examples, anyway. There was a time when I’d make sure to go see all of John Cusack’s movies in theatres. For a couple of years in a row, they would come out around my birthday too, so that was fun. I don’t go to theatres much anymore, so I mostly get my fix on streaming sites.
And even though I have some autographs and photo ops pictures (for Coheed and Supernatural and nope, I’m not showing them), I’m not an autograph or selfie chaser/collector. Maybe I’m the boring kind of fan! What I would certainly prefer is to get to chat with some of my favorite artists in a more… relaxed setting? I mean… let’s say I’m somewhere and someone I like just so happens to be there. We get introduced and we chat. You know? Not as a fan to a creator, but just… human to human? That’d be neat.
Maybe if I got “famous” myself, I’d get to chat with some of them on a more equal footing! Yeah… I know… I’m delusional. But I have SO MANY QUESTIONS… sociologically inclined questions. Like… how do you DEAL with fame? How does it all make you FEEL? Are you doing good? Are you HAPPY?
Yeah, I’m not holding my breath on that. I’m just super curious, you know? I mean, I can’t even start imagining how that must be. Being famous doesn’t look all that fun, I won’t lie. I get why Sia likes to hide her face.
Oh well… I think I’ve said enough on this whole thing for now. How about you? Who or what do you like enough to spend some time, energy, and/or money on?
If you want, you can “fangirl” over me by subscribing… that’d be neat! lol Or you can say hi on social media. I’d love to hear from you.
See you next week! 😀