Fans — and geek fans in particular — are often passionate advocates for the things they love. Sometimes, they border on being missionaries for the movies, TV shows, and comic books that animate them. But above all, fans are consumers.
Fans have always been vocal and vociferous with their feedback — go check out the letters to the editor in Batman comic books back in the '50s and '60s. But those letters had single signatories and the displeased were diffuse and isolated. Then, as the internet allowed them to connect, they formed rudimentary networks and launched web 1.0 campaigns — now, go check out Batman fan sites from the late ‘90s. Then came the parallel emergence of connectivity technology and genre fiction, which has led to an explosion in fan activism.
Fan-run campaigns run the gamut from trying to affect change in the fictional world to using fiction to create progress in the real world. Some want to influence the life of a character, others fight for representation on screen and behind the camera. In this week's episode of The Fandom Files, we look at some of the biggest fan protests of the last half-decade and talk with two people leading the charge for their respective fandoms.
The first conversation focuses on former Guardians of the Galaxy mastermind James Gunn, who was ousted from the franchise after old crass tweets were discovered by right-wing trolls. We spoke with the fan who started the now-massive petition to have Gunn reinstated, who explained that more than anything, he's looking for a statement that refutes so many of the rumors that have been circulated on Twitter since his firing.
We also spoke with a fan who is actively pushing to have the infamous and mythical Snyder Cut of Justice League released by Warner Brothers. That's a movement that may never end — unless Snyder asks for fans to stop their pursuit.
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