Extent of Fandom

I’ve recently been watching the new season of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic as I also watch the on-going The Idolm@ster anime, and it has me thinking about the upper limits of my own fandom and what effect that might have on how I identify as a fan.

I think My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic is quite a good show. It’s funny and charming and it has remarkably good characters. Whenever I see people praising the show or expressing their love for it and its ponies, I know where they’re coming from. I’ve seen it, and I think it’s worthy of praise. I even have a favorite character, Twilight Sparkle. The Idolm@ster I was less immediately fond of, and kept watching primarily to understand this franchise which I had heard about for so long but never knew anything about. In time, I grew to like the show well enough, and like My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, I gained a favorite character within the show. In this case, it’s Akizuki Ritsuko.

However, I’m not sure how much I can call myself a fan of the show. I like it to be sure, and I think it’s excellent, but something about it keeps me from identifying as an MLP fan, and it’s not because the “bronies” are so outspoken. That’s not a problem at all. If there is something “amiss,” it might be that I have experienced greater passion for other shows, and so by comparison, as highly as I think of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, I know my capacity to love a cartoon can be much greater.

This makes me wonder, if I hadn’t come to MLP: FiM or The Idolm@ster as the person I am now, Ogiue Maniax blogger and academic of dorkish things with plenty of experience in geekdom and a propensity for expressing in writing that which I cherish, would I have more readily considered myself a fan of that series and devoted more of my time and energy to it?

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2 thoughts on “Extent of Fandom

  1. I think this is a good point to raise as far as the “life cycle” of a fan is concerned. It seems we’re all very impressionable early on and over time build resistance (in this case, by comparison of how passionate you feel about one franchise versus another) to newer stimulus. It’s a big reason, IMO, why fans are jaded people. That comic book guy caricature.

    I think it also, by logical extension, has to do with how much we forget. It only makes sense that the lack of some elements that make others jaded may make some fans more receptive to new ideas.

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    • Building on that, the things we liked when we were younger and less experienced may not be the things we like now – our taste refines. I loved harem series when I was younger; now, it’s the unusual ones that don’t solely revolve around getting the girl/boy (Mahou Sensei Negima), or even do something different (Umi no Misaki), hold my interest.

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