Friday, September 23, 2016

Falling Out of Love with a Fandom

I've talked about finding new fandoms and falling in love at first watch/read, so to speak. But what happens at the end?

Falling out of love with a fandom is weird. Sometimes it's a slow process based on writing or new actors or the series getting more and more ridiculous. Sometimes you're binge-watching the previous seasons again and suddenly ask yourself "why am I watching this? It's not doing anything for me any more."

I've had this kind of falling out with a couple of my previously hardcore fandoms over the last year or so. I'm not going to name which fandoms they are so as not to dissuade anyone from getting into them, but for me, they've just started falling flat. Which makes it odd to look at all the merchandise I have from these particular fandoms, all the DVDs and figurines and blankets and clothing. I still enjoy the merchandise itself, but I'm not a hardcore fan of those things any more. I can still enjoy a handful of my favorite episodes, but the rest either bore or annoy me, or I spend all my time picking apart the flaws instead of enjoying them.

Of course, falling out of love with a fandom provides more space for new fandom obsessions. For every show I stopped watching, I found three more that I currently adore. For every book series I put down, I bought six stand-alone novels that sound amazing. For every movie I can no longer stand, there's a comic series that I can't put down.

Moving on from a fandom isn't a bad thing. It doesn't make you a bad fan or a bad nerd. It makes you human, with changing interests. Sure, it can be hard to let go of our favorite characters or worlds even when we don't enjoy the source material much any more. But the source material will always be there if and when you decide to go back.

Have you ever fallen out of a fandom? What was your experience like?

In addition to coming to terms with leaving certain fandoms behind, Emer is plugging away at her novel in progress (very slowly), collecting blind box figurines for her new obsessions, and trying to teach herself to cook.

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