Anna S. (eliade) wrote,
Anna S.

shades of grey

I want to be Merry when I grow up. Not for the first time. I wish I were possessed of the powers of reason that would let me argue something so intelligently, and with such composure. Way classy.

Despite my flippant remarks the other day, I actually don't have simple opinions on RPF. In fact, as with a lot of other subjects, I'm not sure that I have opinions, as much as I do thoughts and questions. Either I'm a big wuss, or a waffle, or I just don't care enough--I'm only on the fringes of RPF fandom, after all. An occasional consumer. Actually, for a while now, I haven't given much thought to RPF as a genre, beyond individual stories. I've moved past my initial disquieted challenging phase, to an acceptance phase. I know that along the way there were several discussions on lists and such that influenced and directed my thoughts. But I think the four things that mostly made it palatable were:

  • Reading stories. Really, really good stories. Intelligent, sweet, charming stories.
  • Realizing that most of the sparkly people I knew (RPF fans) were examples of fandom at its best--that they were some of the giddiest, friendliest, sanest, smartest people in my vicinity.
  • Thinking of celebrities as being, in some ways, personas, many of whose facets are created--in many cases fictionalized--by publicists.
  • Hearing more than one person describe how they used to write stories about rock stars in their notebooks as teenagers, which made me see RPF as a not-so-crazy extension of that.

    I know the last two points can't just be taken at face value. Personas still cover real people, and the medium is at least as important as the message--meaning, things written in notebooks don't always equate to things posted online. (Which reminds me of some of the points raised in that speech I posted a link to the other day, A Group Is Its Own Worst Enemy.)

    Anyway, I guess the problem with the consent argument is, I don't really agree, at least not for fandoms with fictional characters. I mean, it's great that Joss Whedon says "Go forth and write fan-fiction!" But the fact is, I was reading and writing it years ago, when it had a much stronger whiff of legal transgression, and I am not sure I'd stop if some of my favorite fandoms started getting mobilized, organized, and aggressive about pursuing what they see as copyright infringement. I think it'd be highly misguided if they did, because fandom is a collaborative and creative force, and if you slam your fans, you risk your money-maker. I guess...if I were in a fandom where the suits were trying to suck away all my joy, I might not feel *compelled* to stop writing or reading, but I might end up gravitating away from that particular religion, which didn't respect its worshippers. It might sour a fandom for me. That'd be sad.

    But regarding consent when it comes to RPF, that does make sense to me. And, even though I read RPF, I'm not really *in* any RPF fandoms, and lack insight into their tenets, so maybe I should ask people who are: has consent "historically" been considered an important point or hot topic in those fandoms--in N'Sync fandom, for example? I kind of question whether the majority of people really would stop writing if band members voiced unhappiness. But I raise that question from a very uninformed position, outside of fandom, and don't mean to be offensive. As an example of weirdness to me, though, is that people write stories about Eminem, which--because of his views on homosexuality, as far as I'm familiar with them--seems more subversive than usual. As if to say, "In just seven pages, I can make you a man. A gay man!" Like, it's hard for me to imagine he'd welcome stories like that about him.

    But what do I know? Really. I don't follow celebrity profiles that closely. Definitely not his.

    You know, James Marsters's wigs weren't *that* bad in LMPTM. I am actually feeling more forgiving as I rewatch those early Victorian scenes, now, with the sound off.

    Am I the only one who will probably watch "Freddy Vs Jason"?

    Just wondering.

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