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Wednesday Extra: This Snobbery Has To Stop

December 14, 2011

Really, it does. And I’m starting with you.

I know. The guys who used to beat you up in high school are all over Facebook shouting FUS RO DAH at each other. That girl in your class didn’t know The Avengers was a comic, and just thinks Chris Evans is kind of hot. Someone overheard you talking about Dracula and told you they knew all about vampires because they read Twilight. People remember Obi-Wan Kenobi as Ewen McGregor, not Alec Guiness.

And it’s painful, and it’s not fair, and these things weren’t cool when you liked them, so why did these guys decide that they were?

To an extent, you’re right. The big kids took over the sandpit and started playing with your toys. And making their own cheap knock-off toys which were worse.

But, that does not give you the right to be an ass about it. No excuse. I know they were mean when they bullied us. But no.

If someone gets into fantasy fiction through reading Twilight, when otherwise they would never have touched a book (much less fantasy) – then that’s OK. More people in this genre is a good thing. There’s room for everyone if we just got along (and grab a few more chairs…and get some more nibbles, because the crisps are going fast…)

If watching young Anakin Skywalker mope around for four hours encourages someone to watch the original Star Wars trilogy, that’s also a good thing.

And what is not a good thing is you bullying them for it. Yes, you.

We all do it. I do it. When someone tells me they’re ‘reading science fiction now’ and it’s actually just a knock-off novel tie-in to their latest same-old FPS video game, a bit of me wants to cry and throw some Ursula Le Guin at them, or Arthur C. Clarke. But instead, I say ‘oh hey, that’s awesome – what do you like about it?’ And then if you want to recommend something, you can tailor it to their interests; instead of Approach A: THAT IS NOT REAL SF GET OUT, or Approach B: THIS IS MY FAVOURITE SF NOVEL AND I THINK YOU SHOULD READ IT BECAUSE JUST BECAUSE. This is why some people think we are massive douches. Because we occasionally act like them. (Also, some of those tie-in novels are getting damn good, I hear).

OK, now this sounds like some creepy cult where we have to turn everyone into a giant geek as soon as they buy a Bethesda game, but you know what I mean. This is ‘Engaging Friends/Associates With Your Interests Without Being Annoying’. Not ‘Attempt World Domination’. Practice moderation, folks. Not everyone is going to become a Trekkie. This is also A Good Thing.

Also, this is not about accepting the sub-par dross that Hollywood likes to fling at us from time to time. We’re not supposed to lie down and pretend to like the Transformers films (although, by now, hasn’t everyone agreed they’re just terrible?) Just don’t act like a massive prick when someone confesses that’s what made them consider watching giant robot films/anime.

Baby steps, people. Baby steps.

Wednesday’s Top Links

Science Fiction is creeping into more mainstream films (The Guardian)

The Courtship Dance in Science Fiction Romance (HeroesAndHeartbreakers.Com)

Fantasy and Science Fiction: A Girl’s Primer (BetterWorldBooksBlog)

(What is this ‘Wednesday Extra’ thing? When I’m feeling especially wordy you get two posts a week. Regular updates are still Saturday, and Any Other Guff is a Wednesday thing.)

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One Comment leave one →
  1. December 14, 2011 11:26 pm

    You need to add a re-post function so I can reblog you! It’s like RT, but for blogs (I can show you right now, later, tomorrow, in the new year if you get stuck I lOVE YOU).

    We’ve had this discussion muchly (see also: it’s about time you wrote this post ’cause it’s important, rather than talked about it – I’m teasing you don’t hurt me). You’re posts are so goood. How do you do it? TEACH ME, ONII.

    Um, yeah, re-blog/post thing. Get on that :D

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