Over the past four or five years, I have gotten more into fandoms and fan culture, and even though I’ve been totally obsessed about several actors, I have never considered myself a fangirl. That’s mainly because there are some aspects that I link with being a fangirl (and a fanboy) that I don’t really like. I’d like to emphasise that this is just how I see being a fangirl, and it isn’t necessarily an accurate description and definetely not all fangirls are like this.
For the sake of simplicity, I’m going to talk only about actors, but this can be applied to other celebrities as well.
For me there is a clear distinction between simply liking an actor and admiring their work, and being a fangirl. This distinction is, that if you simply like an actor, you might want to see more of their work, but you don’t automaticly like all their work, whereas to me it seems that fangirls tend to follow blindly their object of adoration. Their favourite actor can do nothing wrong, and they watch all the works of their favourite actor, no matter if they actually like it or not. If there is a contest where audience gets to vote for the best actor/tv-show etc, they automaticly vote for their idol, even though they don’t even know the other candidates. How can they know that what they voted for is the best, if they don’t even know what the other candidates are like?
I’d like to make it clear that I don’t think there’s nothing wrong in wanting to watch more work from your favourite actor, and even try new genres because of that. But if you only watch a tv-show or a movie, because of that one actor, even though you don’t like it, that’s what I have a problem with. I understand that not everyone can like everything and that’s fine. But watching a tv-show you don’t really like, only because your favourite actor is in it, and stopping to follow it the minute they leave the show, feels like disrespecting the hard work of all the other people who take part in making that tv-show. Like their efforts mean nothing to you. Yes, the show can change during the years and even turn into something that you don’t like, even though you would have loved it before, but just one person leaving the show shouldn’t suddenly make it so bad you can’t watch it anymore.
This thing has been bothering me especially much lately, because I feel like I have started to develop these “fangirl qualities” with my newest celebrity obsession, Aidan Turner. At first I noticed him in tv-show Poldark, and started to follow that show, even though I don’t normally watch historical tv-shows. When the show went on, I started to get really annoyed with the plot and the main characters, but kept watching the show, because I hoped it would get better. Then the second season ended and I wanted to see more of Aidan’s work. Most of it isn’t easily available in Finland, but I managed to find Being human on Netflix. I wasn’t really intersted in it, but desided to give it a go anyway. Now, after the first season I know that it’s too dark and gory for my taste, but I keep watching it anyway. My problem is, that I’ve understood that Aidan’s character leaves the show after third season, and I don’t know if I want to watch the show after that… I kind of feel like I should watch the rest of the show too, and there is only 14 episodes combined in the seasons 4 and 5, so maybe I will.
I’d like to make it clear, that I’m not really saying that people shouldn’t behave like this, because it’s none of my business. If people aren’t hurting anyone or breaking laws with their choises they are free to do as they please. I have no right to say whether someone’s reasons to watch or not to watch a tv-show or a movie are right or wrong. My problem is more about that I don’t want to behave that way, and with this post I’m trying to solve the conflict within me when I notice I’m doing exctly that.
Thank you for reading.