Saturday, January 9, 2010

Defending "Avatards", Furries, LARPers, and Fanboys-- They're A Lot Better than Sports Fans

Most people are at least casual fans of science fiction. Of the top 100 movies according to Box Office Mojo I counted 49 that could be labeled science fiction. On television, shows like CSI and NCIS and their spin-offs, The Big Bang Theory, House, Chuck, Burn Notice, etc etc show that people will watch the stuff at home, too.

And yet, people seem to find it so easy to make fun of "extreme" fans, or fanboys. Remember when William Shatner famously told "Star Trek" fans to "get a life" on "Saturday Night Live"?

Now that the film "Avatar" has been released, and become a big hit, there is a backlash growing against the more extreme fans, who are being called "Avatards":

I’m pretty sure I predicted Avatar would be the next big trend among furries, LARPers, and assorted obsessed weirdos. Now that the Avatar forums have heated up, it appears we may have as much fun with Avatards as we did with Twihards. More, even. Avatards are like Twihards’ older, computer programming cousins.

("Twihards" are fans of "Twilight." "Furries" are humans who like to dress as humanoid animals. "LARPers" are those into "live action role playing," particularly of fantasy and medieval games.)

Some comments from Avatar message boards that are the object of the article's fun:

“I cant stop thinking about all the things that happened in the film and all of the tears and shivers i got from it. I even contemplate suicide thinking that if i do it i will be re birthed in a world similar to Pandora and the everything is the same as in Avatar..”

“I’ve had the exact same feeling after I first saw Avatar- the sick realization that Pandora isn’t real- and trying anything to just escape this reality and live there instead, even trying to put myself into a coma so my dream world would be Pandora.”

“My urge to be a Na’vi is probably the strongest thing I have ever felt, and also the reality that it will likely never happen. Of course being able to link up with nature, or fly on your own personal dragon-bird is cool, but I want to be a Na’vi for more than that. I’ve pretty much given up all hope in the human race…”

First of all, I have a hard time believing that the postings above are completely serious. At the very least they are hyperbolic, and might even be spoofs. But let's assume for a minute these people are totally sincere in their depression over the fact that the world depicted in the film "Avatar" does not exist.

These people are admitting that the film is not real. That is very good, isn't it? It shows that, no matter how extreme some fans might be, they understand the difference between reality and the movies.

Also, how many fanboys, LARPers, Avatards, Trekkers, or Furries commit murder after being taunted for their hobbies? Well, sports fans kill each other in arguments over their favorite teams.

A second degree murder trial has started for a New Hampshire woman charged with killing a man with her car after allegedly being taunted for having a New York Yankees decal on her vehicle.

Two men have been charged in the beating death of a man near Citizens Bank Park over the weekend, a third suspect has surrendered, and parts of the fight were caught on surveillance tape, police said Monday.

European football is in shock after a French fan died after being beaten up before a game in Serbia ten days ago. 28-year-old Brice Taton died in hospital in Belgrade. He had gone to Serbia to support his home team, Toulouse in a European match.

COLOMBIAN police said today they had arrested five football fans on suspicion of beating to death a rival supporter, who got on their bus by mistake after a match in Bogota.

They riot and loot when their teams have success. How many Avatards were out rioting when their new favorite film became the number two all time money making film in record time?

A high-spirited overtime basketball game between two rival high schools spilled in the streets and sparked a small riot between fans in Cliffside Park last night, police said.

Hundreds of revellers caused havoc on the streets of Los Angeles last night after the Lakers won the NBA championship.

The March 27-28 riot occurred shortly after MSU's Final Four loss to Duke University. More than 5,000 people rampaged through the city and campus, causing more than $150,000 in damages.

There are football riots that stop a game, and then there are football riots that stop a whole season. The riot that followed Danubio’a 1-0 over Nacional in Uruguay’s Primera División was one of the latter.

In the latest outbreak of sports violence in the United States, riot police in Oakland used tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse hundreds of angry fans rampaging through parts of the Californian city after their team lost Super Bowl XXXVII in San Diego on Sunday night.

Furries don't riot.

You get the idea. Sports fans are obnoxious. They kill people in arguments over which team is better. They riot if their favorite team loses. They riot if their favorite team wins. And, as I've already written many times, they directly cost taxpayers a lot of money in subsidies and bailouts for stadiums.

Do the Avatards demand taxpayer money to finance their favorite hobby? Do the LARPers get tax breaks to build stadiums in which to-- um, LARP?

They do not. So if any extreme fans (and no, not all sports fans are extreme sports fans) must be made fun of, why not save it for the jerks who turn their aggressions outward, and cost the rest of us, and spare those who aren't trying to force their "love" of their hobby on the rest of us?

These people got excited about seeing the movie "Avatar," and so they got dressed up in makeup that can be removed once the moviegoing experience is over.

This person is stuck with this body art forever (barring expensive and painful surgery). So who is the real doofus?

Furries pic source.
James Cameron and Avatar fans pic source.
Sports fan tattoo pic source.


shampoo said...

excellent point about our $$$$ being wasted.

scifi fans may spout lines from their favorite movies and shows, but at least those lines are more coherent than "hunker down", "git er done" and various comments about "dawgs"
why must there always be a "dawg"? only randy should be the only human allowed to reference dogs so much.

and the sports "dawgs" are never poodles. and not just because no poodle would answer to "dawg", not even for tomato.

A.Jaye said...

You know what Ricky it's a good thing I think you're a good lad. 'Cos if I was to forward this post to the Peoples Republic of Mancunia

you'd start getting hate mail.

Ricky Sprague said...

I very much appreciate that, AJaye. I do want to feel the wrath of the United fan.

I don't know what the finances of sports teams are like in England; it could be totally different there. My main objection is that tax money goes to finance the teams, mostly through stadium deals that are money losers for the government and therefore the taxpayers. If that were taken out of the equation I'd have little problem with sports fans-- except those who riot and kill other people, of course.

But if it weren't over sports, it would probably be over something else anyway.

Xydexx said...

I think a big portion of it has to do with insecure geeks who need to put other fandoms down because they think it makes them look cool. The geeks who are comfortable with themselves actually have the social graces that make it possible to get along with other fandoms and don't have to resort to that.

shampoo said...

it all comes down to identity invovlement. if your idenity is wrapped up in a movie or team or whatever else, you get offended if someone puts those things down. some people just get offended quietly to themselves and other people react in a bigger ways.

of course, that doesn't explain why a fan of professional sports team would riot when the team WINS (and destroy part of the city the fan lives in and the team represent), but I plain do not understand that. excess adrenaline?