Three Chic Geeks

For the nerdy and proud. Warning: spontaneous geekgasms may occur.

We Are Fandom, Hear us Roar

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we are fandom, hear us roar - a discourse on how a fandom can make or break anything on the internet.

It’s a running joke that Tumblr is fueled by two things: hipsters and fandoms.  But mostly fandoms. Seriously, I dare you to find a hipster photography post that doesn’t get hijacked by the Supernatural, Doctor Who, Sherlock, or Merlin fandom at some point. I dare you.

The beautiful thing about social media like Tumblr is that it has generated even more participatory culture amongst fangirls and fanboys everywhere. It’s easier than ever to paint your favorite character, remix a song, or make a fan video and share it with millions on a variety of platforms where fellow enthusiasts can offer criticism, praise, and even their own responses. Let’s not even get started on the gifs. Some shows, such as BBC Sherlock, have been gif’d so much that you can probably watch the entirety of the series in gifs.

The instantaneous nature of the internet also means that fandom news travels fast. In fact, news travels so quickly that this photo of Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman turned into a fandom phenomenon in just a few hours’ time on Monday, March 11th.

It’s grape to see you too, buddy!

Yes, a simple silly picture taken between cast mates led to fan art, gifs, copycat pictures, and my personal favorite, the #ReplaceSherlockQuotesWithGrape tag on Twitter.

Okay, this one was pretty grape as well. (Source)

Instead of relying on traditional news media, which can take days or even weeks to spread the word on a beloved show, we can all flock to our computer screens and have the latest news in a matter of minutes. And then we can all flail together.

You may be thinking: “Okay, so fans have all this access to other fan-generated content now. So what?”

The point is simple. Technology has changed the way in which we interact with each other as fans and has created a giant network of fans all across the world. We are not limited to sharing our love of a particular book or television show with only those in our immediate vicinity; the only limit to fandom groups now is internet access. However, this accessibility has lead to some criticism of the new generation of fandom.

Recently, the new wave of internet fandom has come under scrutiny, particularly in the Sherlock Holmes community. Some of the more traditional fan-based groups that pride themselves on their scholarly approach to their passion showed disdain for the new generation of Sherlockians. It is no secret that some prominent members of the Baker Street Irregulars (we’re looking at you, Shreffler) expressed their disapproval of popular podcasters, The Baker Street Babes. The situation even warranted a mention in a New York Times article. The fact that anyone’s “fan cred” can be questioned is ridiculous. The fact that female fans were targeted specifically YET AGAIN is outrageous. Didn’t we just fight this “fake geek girl” battle? Clearly the war is still ongoing.

The BSI and BSB situation raised an interesting dialogue on what it means to be a fan, one that we believe the majority of the BSI responded to well. The fact of the matter is, anyone can be a fan of something. It doesn’t truly matter how long you’ve been a fan of Sherlock Holmes or the Avengers. It doesn’t matter if you haven’t read every single canon story and if you don’t write academic essays on the homoerotic subtext of Batman comics. It doesn’t matter if you don’t regularly discuss the deeper symbolism of Doctor Who episodes at dinner parties. If you love something you are free to express that love and connect with others in any way you see fit. This is a truth that should go without saying.

Why then, does fan snobbery exist? The answer is quite simple. We, the online fandom generation, are a threat. In fact, we’re completely taking over. Not only do we interact with each other in new ways, but we also interact with the writers, actors, directors, artists, etc. in ways that traditional fan avenues could never hope to achieve. Sure, you can meet an actor at a convention, but do you really think that thirty second interaction is going to have as much impact on say, Martin Freeman, as does the existence of Tumblr? I don’t think so.

We, the online fandom, have everyone’s attention. We’re the ones helping to shape the shows we love. We’re the ones taking over social media as we know it. And people are taking notice.

We are fandom, hear us ROAR.

ROOOOOOOOOAR (Source)

P.S. We know you’re out there, Mr. Freeman, trolling us with your red pants and your grapes. We’re watching you watching us watch you. 

You May Also Like:


Fictional Boys We Want To Date (who would make awful boyfriends)
The Reichenbach Feels Playlist
Geek Girls Are Taking Over The World
Ways to Distract Yourself Until the New Season of Sherlock Arrives

Author: Critique Geek

Writer and dreamer with a BA in Sarcasm. All-around nerd and lover of geeky things.

55 thoughts on “We Are Fandom, Hear us Roar

  1. That gif at the end is priceless! Nice post. :)

  2. Great post! and very true! If it wasn’t for tumblr I would have never gotten into shows like Sherlock or Downton Abbey. Do I take pride on being a fangirl? (absolutely!) I am a mom and I work full time, my “fangirliness” helps me stay sane.

  3. Just thank you for this perfect post. I am a fangirl and I am proud of it :D

  4. Brilliant! That’s US!

    Oh. I don’t have REBLOG button here. I’m lost. I NEED TO SHARE THIS!…. Oh. There IS a Share button. Good. I’m okay now.

  5. Fantastic post, couldn’t agree with it more if I tried to!!!

  6. “The fact that female fans were targeted specifically YET AGAIN is outrageous.”

    Well, Shreffler did begin his essay with a mention of fanboys…

    And I am less impressed by the BSI/BSJ response, which is just a pat on the head rather than any real opening up. The BSI remains a bastion of elite devotees, and while it’s oh so generous of them them to descend from Olympus to approve of the rest of us, I’d really like to see their dinner be open to everyone on a first-come basis.

  7. it’s hard being a hipster fangirl that geeks out in small gatherings. you can’t squee!, dress in costume or get books signed but you wind up at events so, like, so randomly. it’s completely not intentional. and no i didn’t photobomb william gibson. i just tripped. whatever..

  8. ROOOOOOOOOAR! Too funny!

  9. Perfect post. Awesome job.

  10. It is crazy how quickly things travel when they enter the world of social media! “A member of One Direction sneezed twice in a row”, all of the sudden people are posting videos of them sneezing twice in a row. T-shirts are made, parody songs are put on Youtube and the hastag #doubledirectionsneeze becomes trending on Twitter…so crazy! Great post, thanks for sharing and congrats on being Freshly Pressed!

  11. Great post! I’m a closet fangirl, but this made me wanna come out and, as you said, ROAR!! Definitly following you guys from now on!

  12. I may have just found my new favorite blog…

  13. This is a great post but I must admit that a lot of the time the fandoms scare the hell out of me! Some of the fanfiction written by 13 year olds is just… eh… mind-boggling!

    • For every fanfic written by a thirteen year old girl who doesn’t have a grasp of anatomy yet, there is a great and detailed work that a talented writer put all their effort into. It helps to go to AO3 and sort by most bookmarked or most hits, complete. Browse the fic recs tag on tumblr in relation to your fandom. Livejournal usually has active groups and will have great fics in a list of fic recs; heck, if you find one of the big, established fandom bloggers on tumblr, you can usually ask them for their fic recs, if they don’t already list them on their sidebar. I’ve read so much amazing stuff that makes me go, “WOW, what are you doing writing fanfic, you talented beast?” it’s not even funny.

      If all else fails, go to wtffanfiction.com and alternate between laughing and weeping for humanity.

      • Hahah, that’s very true, it’s just very easy to become very overwhelmed by the tyrade of the dreaded “Johnlock” fics, dear oh dear… But by all means, if it gets people writing I really shouldn’t be criticising!

        • I mean, at one point I was the thirteen year old girl writing badfic. I grew out of it, and the responses I got from my first readers motivated me to try harder. Now, I write for an award winning blog… and here my mother said fanfiction is a waste of time! Ha! Joke’s on her! Or something…

          It is extremely easy to find badfic, but I could totally refer you to fics that are absolutely AMAZING. Even ones that don’t have Johnlock in them at all, because not everyone ships Johnlock.

  14. It always makes me proud how BBC dramas have found just dedicated fans on international platforms. Great blog.

  15. I love the gif at the end and I love Sherlock even more! Great post and lovely blog!

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  17. I love this! The internet has definitely changed my TV viewing habits and helped me realize that I’m not alone in the frequency, intensity, or duration of my flailing :) I only wish it had been like this earlier!
    Great blog!!

  18. Thank you so much for posting this! Sherlock is absolutely brilliant and although I was a LITTLE late to the party (I started watching when they were showing reruns of Series 2 on PBS), Sherlock quickly became my favourite show. The writing is amazing and so are the actors. Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman are so great about fan art and how much the fans love the show. I’m glad that I’m part of the amazing Sherlock fandom!

  19. oh my god ! You are good at this! Btw check out my blog.I’m new here :)

  20. Great post! Tumblr moves fandom, any time I’m looking for images of movies the best fan-made posters are on Tumblr! Congrats on being Freshly Pressed, that is awesome.

  21. This is an awesome post! Totally deserves the freshly press you got. I love the point you made about not having to have a “masters” in something to consider yourself a fan. Too many people feel that if you don’t own a deerstalker, pipe, and all of the Sherlock novels you couldn’t consider yourself a true fan. Well whether you do or not the simple fact is if you like the show you’re a fan end of story. Hooray for the best fandom ever!

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  23. Reblogged this on From Slacker To Scribe and commented:
    Love this post!

  24. Hi I’m Dee and I’m a fangirl. Sherlock & Jawn forever and their son Hamish LOL

  25. Love this and love that it has been Freshly Pressed, well deserved! Thanks for spreading the fandom love :)

  26. I never understood whether I was a part of a fandom or not until reading this post! Thanks and I hate doing this but if anyone would like to pop over to my blog and check out whats going on there please do!

  27. I love you guys so much right now… A fan is a fan is a fan. There aren’t really levels to it, no matter what you read/ship/make. Also, the gif at the bottom made me laugh harder than I should have. Great article. :)

  28. Very Very Very True :) and I love Sherlock and that last gif is totally awesome :)

  29. Growing up as an Alabama-based fangirl, many of my squee/science-based freak outs are met with dead silence or the accusation of snobbery. After introducing some of my friends to Sherlock and Doctor Who, the teasing has all but stopped.

    This post is a great reminder that all fans are part of fandom, no matter how small or large their parts. Thanks for sharing!

  30. When I saw you title I knew instantly that I just had to read this! And I so agree! We fans are are taking over social media and keeping our favorite fandoms alive! I also love the gif at the end! We are Fandoms! Hear us roar! LOVE IT <3

  31. Reblogged this on Morrighan's Muse and commented:
    Yes to the new generation of fangirls! Hear us roar!

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  33. My our thoughts remain free to share!

  34. Two thumbs up! Fandom’s Rule!!

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