The end of last week marked the 2014 Comic Con. So basically from Thursday through Sunday I was lost in looking at pictures of cosplay and all the celebs doing their panels – wishing that I was there to see it all in person. One of the people I follow (on Instagram and Facebook) is Adrianne Curry. She won the first season of America’s Top Model which I watched. I literally just stumbled on her again recently, on a cosplay site I was exploring.

Comic Con 2014

Comic Con 2014

So of course I gleefully started following her and fangirling out over her cosplay. It really pays to have the time and talented friends to help you pull off some truly spectacular costumes! And then all of a sudden I started reading the comments on some of the pictures she was posting. I generally steer away from comments posted on Facebook and in news articles because it sadly makes me loose all faith in humanity.

People (aka trolls) love to use the internet as their place to say things they would never say out loud – let alone in person. I assume most people don’t actually mean the things they type in the comment sections but say them for the sheer joy of getting a reaction out of others. There are always exceptions to the rule and those people who insist on being mean for the gross factor of it makes them feel better.

Now there’s this entire new community; a community that has been around for a while but is starting to become mainstream. Whether you call them geeks, dorks, nerds, whatever label that’s been given them it’s now cool to like comics and superheros. And what’s wonderful about this group of people is that it’s EVERYONE. Male, female, transgender, young, old, gay, straight, black, white and all the colors in between. Everyone has some fandom to obsess over: Doctor Who, Batman, Supernatural, The Vampire Diaries, Firefly Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Game of Thrones, True Blood, Lost Girl, Sherlock, Twilight, Hunger Games, Star Wars, Star Trek, WOW, LOTRO, Star Trek Cantan, Dragon Age…I mean seriously I could be here for days just naming all the fandoms one can get lost in. Joyously just because you’re addicted to one doesn’t preclude you from being addicted to more than one!

Then Comic Con (and all the other conventions world-wide) comes around and it’s a chance to go all out for all the fandoms you so choose. You can cosplay, you can meet the people who created/wrote/directed your love, you can meet the actors who are associated with all the characters you forget sometimes are fictional.

So what does the comment section of Adrianne Curry’s photo’s have anything to do with fandoms? Well the comment that I saw repeated the most and angered me the most was something along the lines of “So pretty AND a geek!”

Adrianne Curry dressed as Catwoman at Comic Con 2014

Adrianne Curry dressed as Catwoman at Comic Con 2014

So maybe I missed something but what does one’s passions and hobbies have to do with how one looks? I get there is that stereotype of what a geek is and who attends Comic Cons. But do we want to be judged on a stereotype – absolutely we do not! And I would think that a culture that was for so long judged on that stereotype would be more open-minded. But, especially when it comes to fangirls, everyone seems shocked when a “pretty” girl likes Batman. Or a “jock” likes Buffy.

Our culture is permeated with certain ways one is supposed to look and dress. We’re supposed to be just the right amount of skinny, the perfect amount of tan, with the right hair and eye color and cheek bones. We have to work out constantly and be on this or that eating restriction in order to be the healthy kind of skinny. We get constantly bombarded with this through ads, what we see on our tv shows and in movies, what we read and what we see on the internet.

The Fandom world is one that takes that bombardment and twists it to gross proportions. To the point that if you don’t know that name of the comic in which the Joker first appeared you’re not REALLY a Batman fan. If you don’t know the names of all the moves a Paladin can do than you’re not REALLY a WOW gamer. If you don’t do this or that, or wear this or that you’re not really this or that. If you’re a girl you certainly can’t dress up in a sexy Catwoman cosplay and be smart enough to know anything about Selena Kyle.

Let’s take a page out of Wil Wheaton’s “Don’t Be A Dick” playbook! (Turn the volume up and listen to Wil Wheaton tell you why it’s “Awesome to be a Nerd”).

Don't Be a Dick!

Don’t Be a Dick!

Advertisements