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Friday, February 16, 2018

"Mazinger Z" Is Still Ridiculous


In the coming days, I'll be writing a review of Mazinger Z/Infinity for Crunchyroll. And it's going to be a lot more serious than what I'm laying down now.

As anyone who's been around me for a while knows, I was the editor for the Discotek localizations of both Mazinger Z and Mazinger Edition Z (the 21st century "don't you dare call this a remake"). Between that and playing a whole bunch of Super Robot Wars, my familiarity with the franchise is down to nitpick levels of knowledge. I can remember specific weird jokes and cameos and choices in individual episodes that, while "memorable" (in such a way that anything weird is memorable), didn't necessarily add to the actual plot of the show. They were just there and odd.

And dear God did these show up in the movie.

Most of these aren't necessary to understanding or appreciating the movie. If you basically know the Mazinger story, this works, as it's a sequel. But the things you see if you remember tiny specifics... again, dear God.

Join me, won't you?


Garbage-Tier Robeasts


Meet Satan Claus P10. That's his real name. He shows up in a vaguely Christmas-themed episode of the original series, as well as in the manga. He rides a rocket-powered sleigh and has a missile-launching whip. And he's not even the main baddie of his episode.

And he shows up in the gosh danged movie.

I'm not kidding. Making this even stranger and slightly more personal is that Satan Claus was mentioned specifically (along with another who made it into the mix) in an article I wrote for Crunchyroll on things that had better be in the movie or else. The sheer amount of things from this list that made it in is shocking. I think only Baron Ashura in disguise and a Lorelei cameo didn't make it. Oh, and Viscount Pygman, thank God.

Truth is, minus the new threat and our usual minibosses, all of our enemies are monsters of the week from the original series. Doublas and Garada make several appearances, obviously. But then we get into the super weird ones that absolutely should not be able to function and were probably designed after sixteen cups of coffee with a deadline creeping ever closer.

And yet? The fights are badass. It's almost like what "Dalek" did with Daleks... where someone took these weirdos and figured out how to make them a threat.

Still. Frickin' Satan Claus.


THAT STUPID TALKING BIRD


(I can't find a picture of that dickhead bird and I can't remember his name and clearly no one else took the time to screencap him so here's an IRL myna bird.)

Let me tell you about this stupid bird.

So I'm working away on an episode, and there's a goddamn talking myna bird in it. He looks more like one of those racist-ass birds in Dumbo (you know, where one of them was literally named "Jim Crow") but with glasses, but apparently he's a myna bird. And apparently he is HI. LARIOUS. Expect for the part where he's bloody well not.

I get to a fricking stand-up routine he apparently does while standing on a plate of sushi in the midst of the lead cast. His routine went something like this:

BIRD: Do you remember the story of [Japanese historical figure]?
CAST MEMBER: Yes.
BIRD: Then have some sushi!
ENTIRE CAST: [falls over in fits of laughter]

This. Baffles me. So I hit up the rest of the localization team for some clarification. Is he imitating a comedian of the time? I ask. Not as far as they know. Is there a pun I'm missing? No. Is this now, or has it ever been, in any way a form of Japanese humor or entertainment? Nope.

In other words, this fucking bird was spouting non sequiturs while completely slaying the entire cast.

My final decision was to turn them all into Dad Jokes. "Do you know the story of Oda Nobunaga? Then you ODA eat some sushi!"

I'm ashamed, too. But this is what I had to work with.

Anyway that goddamned bird ends up in the movie, just so you know. Don't let that stop you, it's just a visual reference.


The Ridiculousness of Boss Borot


The team was divided in our opinion of Boss and his junk robot. I personally loved him; he was a school bully turned good (though he was never all that threatening in the first place), and I liked the occasional levity of his "fights." Others didn't agree. Their loss.

At any rate, I knew Boss would be back, but I had no idea how much TLC would be put into choreographing and rendering a classic Boss Borot slapstick battle. It was approached with the same care and detail as all the other fights in the film, but it hit all the right notes for a Boss scene.

I was pleasantly surprised. That goofiness is one of the things I really love, and I'm so glad it's still there.


My full review (coming soon, so keep an eye out) will cover a lot more than just the weirdness. But for better or for worse, Mazinger Z remembered how utterly ludicrous it is, while still bringing the badass. In my mind, it's for the better.

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Do you enjoy posts like these? Want to see more genre fiction analysis, along with new fiction and writing advice? Drop me a donation on Ko-fi! Each month, I'll have new fiction, essays, and other goodies for my supporters. Even small donations help me do more of what I do and expand my reach, so I can help people like us do more of what we love. Thanks in advance!

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Happy Valentine's Day. You don't have to love yourself.


It will come as no surprise to many of you that I'm not my biggest fan. It will come as a huge surprise to others of you, I suppose. Because speaking positively about yourself (an absolute necessity in this industry where you are essentially your own agent) is seen as a sign of self-confidence, rather than someone potentially doing what they must under duress.

How would I describe myself to someone scouting me for work? I've been writing for more than half my life. I've engaged in multiple collaborative creative works, many of which have gone to print. I am published in three companies and am currently a news and features writer for arguably the world's biggest anime streaming site. List off education, interviews I've given, etc.

How would I describe myself to a friend asking why I'm in a bad mood? I feel deeply underqualified and untalented. And yet, I take it much too personally if a comment directed at me in any way implies (or can be inferred by me in a bad mood as meaning) that I am not being trusted to do my own job. I love my writing until the moment it leaves my hands, at which point it's terrible. I'm hypocritical, have a temper I am not proud of, and -- on a purely superficial level -- when I look at myself in the mirror I don't find what I see attractive.

Real talk, I am not my biggest fan, and odds are I'm my second or third biggest detractor.


One of the most harmful things I hear people say is that no one will love you until you can love yourself. Because dear God, that's disappointing. I have days when I'm okay with myself, and maybe with continued effort I will look at myself more kindly. But I am relatively sure I will never be able to "love myself."

Really, I don't think anyone is required to "love" themselves. That's a tall ask. Come to terms with themselves? Yes. Understand that the things they are dissatisfied with about themselves are largely human and almost certainly not something only they possess in the entire universe? Sure. But just as I side-eye Dove's behests to find ourselves beautiful, I side-eye loving ourselves.

Can you? Great. Good for you. You're a better man than I am, Gunga Din. I don't distrust people who like themselves or people who look at themselves in the mirror and say they're beautiful. I deeply distrust anyone or anything that tells us that we will never accomplish anything until we can, though.


My boy Carl Jung talks about the "shadow" a lot -- you'll see it in a lot of literary analyses, and you'll see me talk about it a fair bit. It's relevant to both psychological and literary interpretation.

Your Shadow isn't necessarily your "bad side." But it is an amalgamation of things about yourself you don't like -- put together, they make up the person you don't want to be. Every buddy cop movie is a Shadow story in its way: two opposites thrown together, hating what the other is, but eventually coming to terms and cooperating.

I'll use myself as an example.

Kara Dennison is the professional writer and interviewer. She's always made up, hair done with bright colors, fluffy dress, shiny Doc Martens. She's well spoken onstage, friendly at the bar, generally has a good joke to thrown back.

Kara's Shadow slumps around in pajamas and doesn't want to do laundry. She has terrible writer's block, a stutter, and is terrified of being around people. She's easily offended, easily angered, and gets jealous when she knows there's no reason to.

Both of those are things I have in me. But here, I've compartmentalized them into two "identities": the one I try to be and the one I try to stop being. The one I like and the one I hate. The version of me I think has a chance in the world, and the version of me I really don't need getting out. Me and my Shadow.



In fiction, you can either destroy your Shadow or align with it. In reality, aligning is really our only option -- in a large part because we need what we dislike about ourselves.

If I were not all those things I don't like -- the tired, lazy, stuttering, easily offended, jealous girl behind all her deadlines -- I couldn't empathize. Because I have this side of me, I can look at another person behaving a certain way and ascertain why. I can tell very quickly if someone's attitude is because they're genuinely angry, or because they're tired, or because something has struck a specific nerve. If I didn't possess all those aspects to myself that I dislike, I'd have no context to work from.

And that's why "loving yourself" is a weird order: because you also have to embrace your Shadow and, instead of relegating it to that person you don't want to be, understand it and make it work for you. Loving yourself while acknowledging those elements of yourself is a bit much. And that's okay. You don't have to love or even "tolerate" yourself. Because the longer you try, and the longer you fail, the more you'll beat yourself up. Rinse, repeat.

At the absolute most, all you gotta do is go a little easier on yourself. Cut yourself some slack. The person in the mirror doesn't have to be beautiful or your best friend, just as long as you go a little easier on them. That in itself is a big step.

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Do you enjoy posts like these? Want to see more genre fiction analysis, along with new fiction and writing advice? Drop me a donation on Ko-fi! Each month, I'll have new fiction, essays, and other goodies for my supporters. Even small donations help me do more of what I do and expand my reach, so I can help people like us do more of what we love. Thanks in advance!

Friday, February 9, 2018

See Me at ODU Minicon!


Looking to bend my ear about all the things? Catch me this weekend at ODU Minicon! (Yes, this is the same one I had to bow out of last year for health reasons -- I'm taking my Vitamin C and staying healthy so I don't suddenly contract a plague tomorrow morning.)

I'll be presenting three panels at the event for your enjoyment, edification, and heckling:


Friday, 9 PM: "Doctor Who: The Un-Sci-Fi"
A discussion of the history of Doctor Who and its ever-changing genre. We'll talk about the literary definition of sci-fi, the genres that the show most closely fits in its various eras, what Doctor Who can be most closely called, and then we'll open up discussion to those times when Doctor Who really nailed the sci-fi style.

Saturday, 2 PM: "Getting Started in the Anime Industry"
I can't help you get a role in your favorite dub, but I can teach you what you need to know to ace an interview with streaming subtitle sites! Get a heads-up on the jobs available, how to prep for them, what software you'll need, and what to expect at your "interview."

Saturday, 7 PM: "A History of Magical Girls: From Sally to Madoka"
What was the first magical girl series to kill off its heroine? Who was the first transforming magical girl? Where did the earliest shows get their inspiration? We'll discuss the history of the genre, some notable titles, and how it became what it is today. And then we'll spend the rest of the hour talking about our faves!


I will also be appearing with Friday Night Fanfiction for their late-night panel on Friday, partaking of some vintage fanfic.

Note: I will not be at the con on Sunday, as I have work commitments.

Want to go? RSVP on their Facebook page and check them out to find out more!

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Do you enjoy posts like these? Want to see more genre fiction analysis, along with new fiction and writing advice? Drop me a donation on Ko-fi! Each month, I'll have new fiction, essays, and other goodies for my supporters. Even small donations help me do more of what I do and expand my reach, so I can help people like us do more of what we love. Thanks in advance!

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

This Is My Requisite Falcon Heavy Hot Take


Understandably, yesterday's Falcon Heavy launch -- which included a Tesla Roadster courtesy of engineer and round earth advocate Elon Musk -- was the talk of pretty much everything yesterday. Which, on the Internet, means that even if you don't like it or aren't talking about it, you're talking about it.

The majority of responses were of the Science Is Really Neat "boom-de-yada" category, while others were a little less positive. They don't like the demonstration of wealth. Because -- and I'm kind of agreeing with them here, I'm not being sarcastic -- nothing says "I'm rich as foretold" like shooting a Tesla playing "Space Oddity" into orbit around Mars as a publicity stunt.

Others found a middle ground: maybe they weren't a big fan of the demonstration, but what it means for the future of space exploration overall is a big enough positive that it outweighs any negative.

I don't believe anyone is necessarily right or wrong on this, because it's hard as hell to nail any sort of objectivity to something as bizarre as this. But I will, as I did with some friends earlier today, encourage you all to put a new spin on it when you think of it:

Our new "We live in the future" benchmark is "A dude shot a car into space to orbit around Mars while playing Bowie." Which blows my previous benchmark, "A robot got arrested for performance art," out of the water.

Allow me to explain.


It started, as all my favorite stories do, with a Swiss art group. Back in 2015, !Mediengruppe Bitnik programmed an AI to shop for random items on the Dark Web. The bot, named Random Darknet Shopper, was given $100 in Bitcoin every week and left to its own devices. Whatever it ordered showed up at the group's door unexpected, was photographed, and then went to a local museum as part of an art installation.

You probably already see where this is going.

For a while, things were fairly calm: the robot ordered knock-off jeans and sneakers, some ebooks, and lots and lots of soup. But then things got a little edgier, and the artists found themselves receiving shipments of ecstasy and forged Hungarian passports.

And the police got involved.

If you have ever felt weird about the shit you get up to, imagine going, "It's not us, officer, it's the computer program we send out onto the Dark Web. For art." Your college antics are likely tame by comparison.

That was three years ago, and for a long time I put that as a benchmark of Where We Are in our journey into the future. What I'd say if I got to travel back in time and tell someone what we're up to with the intent of blowing their mind. And honestly, yeah. It's wild.

But it is not as wild as the fact that someone just went and frickin shot a car into space.

Not only that, they miscalculated and that poor Roadster may end up in the asteroid belt.


Now, I'm talking like the only notable thing about the launch is the car. And obviously that's not the case. We're looking at a massive change to the way we execute and envision space travel and exploration. The mainstream is slowly waking up to the idea that Science Is Sexy, and we're seeing more and more innovations spread out into different areas and different hands.

But the biggest advance of all, which is one people rarely take into account when exploring advances in science and technology, is that people are now doing some really weird shit.

That's how you know something is real and essential and accessible. Without sarcasm or silliness, the inherent weirdness of the event is a turning point in and of itself. "Dude, some guy shot his car into space" is not a thing you can say until space travel is achievable, accessible, and normalized.

We've come a long way. So let's keep it weird.

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Do you enjoy posts like these? Want to see more genre fiction analysis, along with new fiction and writing advice? Drop me a donation on Ko-fi! Each month, I'll have new fiction, essays, and other goodies for my supporters. Even small donations help me do more of what I do and expand my reach, so I can help people like us do more of what we love. Thanks in advance!

Friday, February 2, 2018

The Nature of the Time Loop


As a few of you know, I have a Black Archive installment coming out this summer covering the frankly amazing Doctor Who episode Heaven Sent. I cover a lot of ground in the book, from Jungian house/psyche symbolism to a discussion of why the Confession Dial's inconsistent "resets" actually make complete sense from a programming standpoint. Of course, I have to discuss the time loop element at some point.

I'm not giving away that section, obviously. But given the holiday, I did want to touch briefly on what I discuss in my section on the literary use of time loops... hopefully to get you a little interested in what I'm up to.

Note that this contains past-expiration-date spoilers for Groundhog Day, Heaven Sent, The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, and the original book series of The Dark Tower.




So Groundhog Day is one weird beast of a movie. Billed as a rom-com, turning quickly into a cross between a spiritual metaphor and an almost Ellisonian horror story, and treated within our culture as completely its own animal. Which, well, it really is.

Director Harold Ramis stated that Phil lived in his February hell for approximately ten years. But famously, Simon Gallagher of WhatCulture (then Obsessed with Film) crunched the numbers and came up with just under 34 years. For an actor then in his mid-40s playing a character likely also in his mid-40s, that's nearly his entire life lived over again.

From a symbolic standpoint, though, it only matters that it was a Lot Of Years, and that nothing actually moved until Phil achieved self-awareness and sought self-improvement.


Now, Ramis is not even remotely the first person to use a time loop as a plot point in a story, and 1993 is not even remotely the earliest we've seen it happen. Stephen King, even before the final Dark Tower book dropped, believed that "hell is repetition" and used it to effect in his other stories.

However. There comes a point in the nature of a trope when it's either been used one way so much, or such a high-profile work has used it, that the trope itself becomes symbolic. Granted, forced repetition as growth and self-improvement isn't exactly novel. And it's a correlation that makes perfect sense. But we are to a point culturally where the mere mention of a time loop evokes a nearly global mental leap to the events of Groundhog Day.

Thus, even invoking the time loop trope is arguably symbolic before any action takes place.


Prior to Heaven Sent busting onto the scene, the most culturally notable new time loop was "Endless Eight," the story that spanned two-thirds of the second season of The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya. Character development is not as much of a strong point in this series -- Haruhi is a central mystery, and most of the light novels and anime adaptations are devoted to figuring out what her world-breaking powers actually are and mean.

KyoAni took a massive risk actually throwing the viewers into the time loop: the (nearly) same episode re-scripted, re-storyboarded, re-designed, re-animated, and re-voiced eight times and showed over eight consecutive weeks with no warning that this would be happening. It got to the point that just hearing Kyon say "Something was wrong" sent fans into nearly as deep a depression as Yuki each week.

All told, the story arc of "Endless Eight" ends on recursion number 15,532 of a two-week period -- totaling up to 595 years. Still small potatoes compared to the Doctor's 4.5 billion, but when you realize it's because Haruhi subconsciously wanted to a last-day-of-summer cram session with her buds and never got it because she did her homework early... well, she always does tend to take things to extremes.

Even so, and even in this overall unremarkable story, it is a slice of character development: Haruhi, the perfect student who always knows exactly what she wants, was just longing for an average bit of irresponsible social life.


Throughout my upcoming book on Heaven Sent, I spend a great deal of time discussing what exactly this story tells us about the Doctor as a person: who the Doctor is, who the person behind the persona is, and what we can gather about a person who feels the need to create such a persona.

But, too, there's a lot to take away from the fact that the castle -- and the episode -- were built on the mechanic of a time loop. For a Western audience that's going to be decently versed in modern Western entertainment, this will immediately evoke the Groundhog Day connection. (Go peep Twitter today if you don't believe me.)

So how much does it figure in to the meaning and the potential reads of this episode that it invokes a trope already inextricably stapled to a film about growth and character development?

... I'll talk about that more in the book.

Look, I can't give everything away.

In the meantime, check out the other books available in the Black Archive series for some fantastic reading.

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Do you enjoy posts like these? Want to see more genre fiction analysis, along with new fiction and writing advice? Drop me a donation on Ko-fi! Each month, I'll have new fiction, essays, and other goodies for my supporters. Even small donations help me do more of what I do and expand my reach, so I can help people like us do more of what we love. Thanks in advance!

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

I've Kept My Resolutions. Kind Of.


Right now we're into the usual end-of-January ruffle: who's kept their New Year's resolutions, who fell off them after five days, who's mocking whom for not making it through even the first month.

Ginger was the one who recommended I write this up for today, and it's a good idea. She's on the "kept resolutions" train for the first month. And that's amazing. As for me... technically I am. But that's largely because I only made two resolutions:

1. Set a daily regimen.
2. Change it whenever it doesn't work.



My biggest flaw when it comes to getting my shit together is how ready I am to give up if I break my own record. Say my resolution involves getting up at 7 am, washing up, getting dressed, having breakfast, and starting the day with some fencing exercises. I do great for a week. Then one night I'm up late on a book deadline, or out visiting friends, or just wide awake in bed doing Fate/GO dailies. So I turn off my alarm in my sleep, wake up at 9, and have to shove a bagel in my face and get right to work. If I even can pry myself out of bed when I wake up.

Immediately, my brain goes, "You've screwed the day, no point trying, you'll never get everything done."

Yes, I've lost some hours and I've lost the kind of start I like. But even I can tell myself (despite my brain telling me the same damn thing each time) that I haven't "ruined a day" just because I didn't get up on time.

Similarly, I haven't ruined a resolution just because I made it a week and fell off one day.



This is why my resolutions were basic and have built-in adaptability. I realized my goal wasn't to do a very specific thing: it was to achieve a certain lifestyle. And I'm still figuring out how that lifestyle is achieved. Which means trial and error.

Telling myself "I will wake up every day at 7 and my mornings will go in such-and-such a way" as a resolution would have been disastrous. Why? Because I don't know if that's what's best for me. I find that I like going to bed early enough to have an early morning because my mind is active sooner, but what I do with that activity I can only dictate once I've built that habit.

We tend to think that the one time we miss is our failure point. Our "bad day" food wise, the day we forget to exercise or don't have time for a morning walk or oversleep or forget our medications. But we don't require a new day, or month, or even year to pick up where we left off.


There's a helpful symbolism to the "newness" that helps us latch back in, but if it becomes a barrier to trying and adapting and picking back up at a decent pace, the symbolism of it is more harmful than anything else. And that's what I've had to beat.

So, have I kept my resolutions? I haven't found my ideal daily regimen that helps me feel how I want to and get everything done. But I have kept the second one: rather than giving up if it doesn't work, I change and adapt based on what I've learned. And in my limited experience so far, it's been more helpful then falling off and quitting on January 5.

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Do you enjoy posts like these? Want to see more genre fiction analysis, along with new fiction and writing advice? Drop me a donation on Ko-fi! Each month, I'll have new fiction, essays, and other goodies for my supporters. Even small donations help me do more of what I do and expand my reach, so I can help people like us do more of what we love. Thanks in advance!

Friday, January 26, 2018

A Message to Fandom Before the Super Bowl


Dear fellow geeks, nerds, and other individuals of laser-focused interest.

Hi. My name is Kara. I make my living being a geek. I've been a geek since I was old enough to choose what I watched on TV. I got bullied at school for being better at Latin than volleyball. I had a difficult time making friends with similar interests until I got to college and found the sci-fi and anime clubs. I was (and still am) pretty bad at sport. At my day job, I received "friendly" mocking for my taste in entertainment.

I'm just front-loading all that so that the people who inevitably think I'm a geek who's not "served her time" will have some comfort. I "served the time," believe me. I lived the lamentable young geek life. Glasses, braces, baby fat and all. Take a slice out of my childhood for your Stereotypical Geek Coming-of-Age story.

Now, fandom friends, I have a request for all of you: let's lay off the sports fans this year.


BUT KARA-


I know, I know. I'm with you. Okay? I'm with you. The jocks were awful to you in high school. They got the preferential treatment. They still do get the preferential treatment in many cases. They mock us for being obsessed with things and dressing up funny, but then they paint their faces and get all tribal about their favorite teams. They're hypocrites and they've been mean to you specifically and it's awful and you have a right to vent off steam back.

Let's talk about that.

First off, the fact that you -- sorry, we -- were hurt in the past by people who mocked us for being fans of things that were not sports, even though the attitude of fandoms in general is largely the same across fan-things. We have favorites we support. We have "big days" we look forward to. We have frankly ridiculous modes of dress that we see no problem with because we do it as a way to celebrate and become a part of what we love and the people involved therein. And the really devoted among us will sometimes get out pencil and paper and play like we're doing the thing ourselves.

As human beings, we are creators and curators. We want to become a part of what we love, and we'll do some ridiculous shit to do that. But to us, and to them, it's not ridiculous shit. Because it achieves, at least to some degree, what we're hoping to do. You and I will never time travel, but we can go to an event about our favorite time traveler. Bob from down the hall will probably never score a touchdown, but he can get together with friends and enjoy watching people who can.


But sport is more publicly accepted than fandom.



Mmmmmm.

Okay. I'll grant you that we still have shows like The Big Bang Theory that paint a very odd, stereotypical picture of nerds. And we are absolutely going to see more commercials, ads, tie-ins, and merch in mainstream places for the Super Bowl than we are for any convention.

These are true points. However, while the Super Bowl continues to lead the charge when it comes to ad-based entertainment, fandom has begun to front the zeitgeist in actual entertainment. With Marvel and DC leading the action industry on both television and film, Star Wars currently being the most talked-about film series, and entire multi-million-dollar organizations existing solely for the dissemination of geek news, merchandise, and videos of people playing D&D... we are not as small as we used to be.

People still make fun, yes. Don't I know it. The minute I try to say anything intelligent online, a stranger's first response is usually to attack me for paying the rent by writing anime news. Trust me. I know. But there is mocking in and outside of and around everything. Why do we hear geeks get mocked more viciously than sports fans? Because we're geeks. We are more inclined to hear negativity we are the target of, either because we have assholes directing it as us more or because our brains literally process negatives as carrying more weight than positives.


But in my case I have been personally bullied.



Same. Cool. Are you retaliating against the specific individual? Or is the Sport Community serving as an avatar for the people who hurt you?

In the case of the former, that's a one-on-one issue for you and the specific individual(s) to resolve.

But in the case of the other, there are a lot of imponderables. Perhaps you have led a life in which you have never met a football fan who did not mock you or punch you in the face. (In which case, hail and well met, fellow Catholic school student.) But, despite your proof, it is untrue that every sports fan is violent. You might need to expand your social circles to learn this, but it's a fact.

Hell, the biggest geeks I know in my personal circles (and even people I'm a fan of!) are also sport fans. Honestly, everything I know about sports, I learned from someone I know via a geek circle who's a big fan of a particular sport and/or team. M'kouhai took me to my first pro baseball game. My friend Rob taught me about hockey. The two are really, truly not mutually exclusive.


But being a sports fan makes you violent and mean.



So here's a side lesson for anyone who believes liking a certain thing makes you a certain way: the people who are being jerks in their chosen area of interest are jerks everywhere else, too.

I'm a Doctor Who fan. I work Doctor Who events. When I go to them, I love to take photos of good costumes, interact with families who watch the show together, share creative endeavors, and just talk. If I were not a Doctor Who fan, would that not be the case in other areas of my life? Well, I'd be a slightly different person, but my love of creativity and family togetherness and hella good cosplay would remain. Nor does that switch off in other areas of my life.

If a football fan is a dick about football, they are a dick about other things, too. No one just stops being what they are when the TV is turned off. If they do, I think there might be a medical term for that. I don't know. Someone help me out here.

Do high-impact sports potentially attract a more violent set? Of course. That's gonna happen. Just as with violent film genres and video games. There will always be That Side of any interest. If your problem is with them, with that side of it, then approach it in a way that is productive to doing something about the problem.


But the professional sports scene has a lot of problems.



Okay, I won't argue with you there.

But ask yourself: is that truly what is driving you to be mean? Or is that your final hand-hold because nothing else is working? If the former, then there are absolutely steps you can take that are useful. If the latter... well.


So Kara you're saying make NO SUPER BOWL JOKES?



No. Ma'am. Jokes are awesome and fun. Jokes also rely on both parties enjoying it. If you wanna crack wise about it, sure. But if you're looking for an excuse to attack the sports community because you're bitter about how you've been treated by others... look into something else.

Are you hurt by how you were treated, and how others are treated? Work harder in a fandom-based community to build and maintain a community of openness and kindness. Combat the unkindness. Do things actively if you feel there is a problem, so that others can benefit -- not so that you can play out a power fantasy against a school bully.

While you're at it, enjoy the halftime show and commercials. Those tend to be fun for all.

-----

Do you enjoy posts like these? Want to see more genre fiction analysis, along with new fiction and writing advice? Drop me a donation on Ko-fi! Each month, I'll have new fiction, essays, and other goodies for my supporters. Even small donations help me do more of what I do and expand my reach, so I can help people like us do more of what we love. Thanks in advance!