Fandom can be an amazing, wonderful thing. Thinking of a few weeks ago, when the Bones fandom donated money to the San Jose Sharks’ charities in memory of Diana as well as the true, real, 3-D friendships I’ve formed…yeah, it can be pretty wonderful.
It can also be mean, petty, and spiteful, and over the past few days, that side has been out in spades.
Here are some things which are true of me:
- I don’t have to try to see multiple points of view. I see them whether I want to, or not. This doesn’t mean I automatically agree with them (the truth often seems like it’s somewhere in the middle of two opposing points of view to me) but they’re just there.
- Because I can see those other points of view so clearly, I try very hard to respect those people who have them. When I write, I try to always make it clear that I’m aware I could be wrong, or that it’s only my opinion I’m sharing. I probably fail sometimes, but I try.
- I also try, always, to remember that there are human beings on the other end of what I write. I know I fail at this, at times, when my love of the absurd, the ridiculous, and the snark get the best of me, but I do try.
So why am I telling you this, assuming that anyone is reading?
Because it’s been a bad few days in the fandom for me. I was attacked for not agreeing with someone (yes, I’m sure the other person sees it differently, but that’s really very much what it came down to. It went from there, and, not at all to my surprise, no one ‘won’.)
And then I popped onto Twitter this morning to see a long stream of bitter, nasty, spiteful Tweets by Bones fans about Almost Human. Some of the comments were by people I don’t really expect different of, in that I’ve never seen them say anything nice to another person, and seldom not even about Bones. Others were by people who I assume believe themselves to be nice people.
And yet…nasty, bitter, spiteful, hateful comments full of rage, self-righteousness, and the desperate hope that the show will fail. It should be noted that none of them were by people who had actually watched the show.
There were two new shows that I was looking forward to this season. The first was Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, and the second was Almost Human. I’m still watching Shield, and still enjoying it in a half-hearted way, but it’s not really hooked me, yet. I can’t quite put my finger on why that is, but I’m not ready to give up yet, so I’m still watching. Based on the past, it will eventually either hook me completely, or it will be added to the list of things I record in the hopes that I’ll ‘get around to them someday.’
But Almost Human? That has hooked me – ironically, for many of the same reasons I love Bones. Is it perfect? No. Is it for everyone? No. (See? There’s the POV thing. I don’t like sitcoms, so it seems only fair to acknowledge that something I love won’t work for everyone.)
I’m not perfect. I know there are people who don’t like me, and that’s fair, as there are plenty of people online who’ve not impressed me much, either. But you know what? I have never, ever, wanted a show to fail. Never. Not shows I used to watch and/or love and no longer do, not shows I wouldn’t watch if you paid me.
There’s a show that a lot of people I know would like to see fail, but you know, I really don’t. Why? Because I’m friends with this woman on Twitter who loves it. She loves it just as much as I love Bones. She’s a nice woman, who’s never said anything mean to anyone, and it’s her show.
A website did a poll a few years ago asking people what show they thought should be canceled, and I couldn’t even vote in it, because I kept thinking, ‘every one of those shows has people who love it.’ I couldn’t do it.
I don’t like the majority of sitcoms that are out there. I can’t tell you how much they irritate me. (Yes, even that one, that half my feed gushes about.) But I don’t want it to fail. I wouldn’t want it to fail even if it meant saving ‘my’ show. I’m just not wired that way. It’s the same with Sleepy Hollow, The Following, and Glee.
And yet my Twitter feed this morning was full of people wanting just that for a show I’m enjoying, very much, simply because they’re angry at a business decision Fox made. (Spiteful and immature, much?)
Do you know what the result was of this?
For the first time since season six, I had a sour taste in my mouth for Bones. That’s right. Not Almost Human, which I was presumably supposed to be joining in the rage fest over, but Bones.
I’ll get over it, by Friday. I know myself and my love for the show that much. And if the hate-fest continues, I’ll probably purge my Twitter feed, and I’m already on a bit of break from the fandom in other ways this week, because I won’t let other people wreck something I love. I didn’t when people lost their minds over Hannah, I won’t now.
But it does make me wonder if there are others out there like me, who are so tired of the nastiness that it’s having rather the opposite effect than is presumably intended. I hope not, for Bones’ sake.
You’d think a fandom would be good for a show, wouldn’t you?