The nature of fandom

Daniel Craig as James Bond

The past few weeks have been rough for James Bond fans. They’ve witnessed the passing of key actors such as Honor Blackman, Diana Rigg and Michael Lonsdale.

All three had long careers that extended beyond James Bond films. But some Bond fans say something to the effect that they represent OUR Pussy Galore, OUR Tracy, OUR Drax.

However, fans of The Avengers TV series might counter something like, yes but that’s OUR Cathy Gale or OUR Emma Peel.

This extends beyond Bond fandom.

I’ve seen some fans of The Man From U.N.C.L.E. say having an American and a Russian as partners was BIG AND BOLD.

Meanwhile, fans of the original I Spy television series counter that having a White and a Black man as equal partners was a lot more controversial in the U.S. in the 1960s.

Undoubtedly, there are many other examples. Many fans, though, don’t want to examine all that. They are concerned with their fandom. No more, no less.

No criticism is intended in any of this. It’s the way of the world. It’s also the nature of fandom.

2 Responses

  1. What is it about the combination of a series, it’s characters and the actors that captures our most intense fandom? As much as I enjoyed RV (NS) & DM (IK) in the MFU, I wasn’t as much of an avid follower of what they did later on. IMO, RV adopted a lot of darker roles. DM certainly stretched his range. So is the fandom more about the characters? It must be. Because we can’t imagine those characters played by anyone else. It would destroy the magic. IMO why many reboots fail. The best way I can explain it, is the chemistry that was created between them. Neither MFU character could stand alone. So is it more about relationships then? Yes, that would be my answer. Enjoying the interplay between the characters which avid fans applied to the actors as well. Who in reality were friendly professionals, but had little in common. Yet true fans never cared.

  2. Fandom is a strange duck. Perhaps some fans become so comfortable that they lash out at ideas and other fans. These are all subjective ideas and whatever you like enjoy. I have fun with it. Different celebrities mean something different to various fans.

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