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Salon article: In defense of female fandom

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Salon article: In defense of female fandom

Postby mohumbhai mania » Tue Jun 29, 2010 3:26 pm

Not about FoTC per se, but a spirited defense of rabid fangirlism. Which FoTC might attract... :roll: :

http://www.salon.com/entertainment/movi ... ale_fandom
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Re: Salon article: In defense of female fandom

Postby mockingbird » Wed Jun 30, 2010 7:51 pm

That was interesting but it could've gone a little deeper.

I actually did a search for information on the psychology of fandom, back in the dawn of my FOTC obsession. ;) I was interested to see what the mental health community had to say about the mechanics of this kind of thing, lol. Most of what I found was about sports fans, which I didn't feel was really quite the same thing. Apparently the going wisdom on sports fans is that they enjoy the cameraderie, the vicarious rush of winning, the energy of being in a screaming cheering mob. They like being part of something that is bigger than themselves, and the sense of pride that brings them. If their team is winning that is. ;) I guess fans of losing teams are all a bunch of masochists. :lol:

So OK, all that makes sense (it's pretty obvious even) but I think FOTC fans (and probably Twilight fans too) are not in that same boat. I mean yeah, the fan community is obviously important to us but I know for myself, I didn't get into FOTC because I was looking for a community to be a part of. Although I will say, joining a fan community strengthened and fed my interest in ways that probably wouldn't have happened if I had just been on my own. I would have still been a big fan but it wouldn't have become such a huge part of my life, I needed real interactions with real people to achieve that, even if you all do just live inside my computer. ;) But I wasn't *looking* for that when I got into FOTC, I was just really digging them, and I got on the computer to see if I could find some more stuff by them and I stumbled upon this place. Originally I came to the forum just for the links and the interviews and the pictures of Jemaine. ;)

Which brings me to another way it's different from sports fans - the lust. :P Sports fans generally do not lust after the players, even female sports fans don't do it, in my experience. I mean yeah, Tom Brady is hot and so is Tony Romo and we could probably name plenty of other sports hotties but while it's acknowledged and appreciated, they don't have crowds of women hanging around the stadium after the game hoping to get a photo with them, lol. I think the author got close to it when she mentioned the endorphine rush, but it's more than that. Here's where we get into murky psychological territory and I'm sure it's different for everyone, we don't all fit into one fan mold but I think we can agree that there is some emotional need that is being satisfied by whatever the object of our fandom is. I think that need varies from person to person so I guess that's why it's so hard to pin down.

This is a very rambling post, lol. I think it's an interesting subject though.
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Re: Salon article: In defense of female fandom

Postby biscuit » Wed Jun 30, 2010 9:08 pm

I thought it was interesting too, the question itself even a bit more than the article.

I can see both differences and similarities to sports fandom, Mock. We do feel proud of the guys for doing good, but it does seem to be on a more private level. Like we know them personally perhaps. Yet, the whole lust thing almost requires the opposite to be true. I would not feel comfortable openly swooning about a friend:P

And even if I can get pulled into the "let's see how far we can push this innuendo thing" game I'm probably not a natural blasphemer :lol:

The thing that sets FOTC fans and Twilight fans apart, at least in my view, is the appreciation of the talent behind the act. Without being a Twilight fan I perceive the attraction there to be all about the characters. Closer to the Figwit thing I guess. With Bret and Jemaine it's about the actual people, which allows for a wider range of fans and a greater variety in reasons to be a fan.

As a woman I can't help but notice that they are good looking men, and you all know where my heart lies :wink: But I can honestly say that if I was given the choice between being Bret (meaning having his talent) and being with him, I'd much rather be him. The talent outweighs the looks by far! They both, but Bret in particular, inspire me to make changes in my own life, to do stuff that I never thought I could do. Probably the reason why I've spent the past year learning to play ukulele and writing mediocre music rather than stocking up on photos :lol: Though I hear one can do both :eyelashes:


I've no idea what I'm trying to say here :lol: I just don't feel like a fangirl I guess. Even if I do belong to this group, but just like with Mock, that's all to do with coincidence. I was searching online for more info and came across this great community. The witty banter and friendly atmosphere sucked me right in :)
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Re: Salon article: In defense of female fandom

Postby mockingbird » Thu Jul 01, 2010 6:16 am

biscuit wrote:I can honestly say that if I was given the choice between being Bret (meaning having his talent) and being with him, I'd much rather be him. The talent outweighs the looks by far! They both, but Bret in particular, inspire me to make changes in my own life, to do stuff that I never thought I could do. Probably the reason why I've spent the past year learning to play ukulele and writing mediocre music rather than stocking up on photos :lol: Though I hear one can do both :eyelashes:


I've no idea what I'm trying to say here :lol: I just don't feel like a fangirl I guess.

See, I am a total fangirl. :lol: I openly swoon over them, and I'd do it right in front of them given half a chance. :lol: :roll: I know that's kind of lame of me but I can't help it, I am who I am. ;) I would rather be with Jemaine than be him. Like, big time. :lol: I don't want to be him at all, actually. But I totally get what you mean about them changing your life. I feel weird talking about it because it seems almost cultish :worry: but I've done tons of stuff I never would have done if it wasn't for them. I learned how to use Photoshop so I could make Conchords stuff, lol. They've been a huge influence on me. For me the talent and the looks are wrapped up together in one big delicious package ;) and there's no separating the two.
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Re: Salon article: In defense of female fandom

Postby nonchalant obsession » Thu Jul 01, 2010 6:19 pm

That article was amusing and the topic is very interesting. "...ladies of lust and laundry..." :lol: And I agree with the author that we do love loving things. The psychology behind it is facinating and it's nice to see articles pop up that explore the topic and don't simply dismiss all women with a passion for a particular subject. The author speaks of Americans and our excessive zeal, I'm interested to know how other countries express or feel about it. Is the Twilight phenomenon global?

To me the backlash against Twilight is understandable, but articles like this are refreshing...http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/co ... 9111804551 Oh, and I suppose I should confess that I did in fact attend the midnight showing of Eclipse yesterday. :blush: I did it mostly for my daughter, but I was wearing my 'team Edward' shirt. :wink:

I am a fan of the Twilight books and the movies, but it's pretty casual. I've never sought out info online or collected photos. Nothing even close to my devotion to Flight of the Conchords. Perhaps my interest in FotC would have remained casual too if I hadn't stumbled upon the forum. I agree with the ladies that Bret and Jemaine themselves, with the depth of their interests and various talents, drew me in past being a casual fan of the HBO show where I started. I think that is why the FIGWIT thing went as far as it did as well.

Wiki says, "The likelihood for a subject of interest to be elevated to the level of fandom appears to be dictated by its complexity. Complexity allows further involvement of fans for a longer period of time because of the time needed to work the subject of interest 'out.' It also contributes to a greater sense of belonging because of the mental effort invested in the subject."

Fangirl?...guilty. :horny: But we all know that it is far more than just good looks. One of those articles talks about feeling things that she hadn't felt in a long time. I totally relate. Mmmmm hmmmmm I am certainly addicted to whatever endorphines are released into my brain when I look at a photo of a Conchord. I can also relate to escaping the ordinariness (is that a word?) of real life. But more than that, this obsession has changed me (for the good) and has given me so much. The joy of the ukulele, so many dear friends, an arena to be creative and mentally joust with some hilarious and talented people from all over the planet, and certainly from the tour - some of the craziest, most precious memories and experiences EVER! I hope the guys tour again so I can pile up a few more. :nod: :pray:

biscuit wrote:Probably the reason why I've spent the past year learning to play ukulele and writing mediocre music rather than stocking up on photos Though I hear one can do both...

:roll2: :nod: Your music is fantastic, and I have you to thank as much as Bret for the joy of the uke! :hug:

mockingbird wrote:Here's where we get into murky psychological territory and I'm sure it's different for everyone, we don't all fit into one fan mold but I think we can agree that there is some emotional need that is being satisfied by whatever the object of our fandom is.

This makes me squirm and yet I want to know more. :lol:
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Re: Salon article: In defense of female fandom

Postby ItsAllRyche » Fri Jul 02, 2010 12:09 am

I absolutely love sports and can say first hand that I get emotional over the win-loss thing with my fave teams. I have on occassion even refused to talk to people after a loss, or after being knocked out of playoffs etc. I am a sports fanatic! that is one thing, but also...


I believe my fangirl thing for FOTC (esp. Jemaine) is due to the fact even though they are celebs, they are so down to earth, they are reasonably obtainable to actually talk to (albeit seconds at a time) and get photos with. To me they are a fantasy that you get to connect with for a few seconds and that, I believe is healthy. Again as long as you do not act out your inner most thoughts :blush: :heartbeat: that changes everything. From innocent to scary.

As for Twilight, I am a Team Jacob all the way; Edward is too lanky for my taste.
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Re: Salon article: In defense of female fandom

Postby mockingbird » Sat Jul 03, 2010 6:02 am

nonchalant obsession wrote:
mockingbird wrote:Here's where we get into murky psychological territory and I'm sure it's different for everyone, we don't all fit into one fan mold but I think we can agree that there is some emotional need that is being satisfied by whatever the object of our fandom is.

This makes me squirm and yet I want to know more. :lol:

I didn't mean to make it sound so creepy, lol. All I meant was the sort of things you said:

Mmmmm hmmmmm I am certainly addicted to whatever endorphines are released into my brain when I look at a photo of a Conchord. I can also relate to escaping the ordinariness (is that a word?) of real life. But more than that, this obsession has changed me (for the good) and has given me so much. The joy of the ukulele, so many dear friends, an arena to be creative and mentally joust with some hilarious and talented people from all over the planet...

Normal stuff like this. ;)

ItsAllRyche, I need to know what your team is now. ;) My husband is a Cowboys fan, he gets depressed when they lose too. Also I'm interested to hear if you think the nature of your fan-ness is different for your sports team than it is for FOTC.
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Re: Salon article: In defense of female fandom

Postby ItsAllRyche » Sat Jul 03, 2010 6:17 pm

My team for football: Pittsburgh Steelers as for NHL: Pittsburgh Penguins and for Rugby: New Zealand All-Blacks only after USA Eagles though :wink: also for MLB: NY Mets

so by this list you can imagine my emotions; depending on the scoreboards can be all over the place all year long, it is funny, once one sports season ends, another sport season begins :bang: I get no break from my bad sportmanship :lol:

I don't follow any teams here in Phoenix except for an amatuer Rugby league because a couple of my friends play. But I must say, when my teams play any Phoenix team I cheer for my team. But I will cheer for Phoenix against outside teams... :rolleyes:
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