Thursday, December 17, 2015

Snark Attack

Why do internet nerds and geek have to tear down and attack with snark things they have only seen in previews? Are they so afraid that the thing they are looking forward too is going to be bad that they might as well assume it will be? This all started with reactions to the Superman V. Batman and Suicide Squad Trailers, and one pop culture commenter’s impressions of the upcoming DC’s Legends of Tomorrow.

It all started with the reveals of some of the DC characters that will make cameos in Superman V. Batman: Dawn of Justice. The cinematic version of Aquaman is no longer the blonde haired and blue eyed, he appears to look more like a Pacific Islander. The actor portraying this character is of Pacific Islander descent. The commenters on the internet had a conniption fit. I like the idea of more diversity. Since I am a fan of Alternate Reality fiction I enjoy twists on old concepts. This is that, but instead of going with the flow the internet trolls gathered to be unmitigated pain.

They said the film will suck, some said that when Ben Affleck was cast as Batman. When Jared Leto’s version of the Joker leaked on the internet, the trolls and fanboys said Suicide Squad would stink. These movies have not even been released yet. One was still in production when this all started. I understand having your opinion, but having an opinion before something even is released is uninformed and ridiculous. This is not new when Michael Keaton was announced as Batman fanboys were not happy, they were not happy when Heath Ledger was cast as Joker either. Both performances shut them the heck up.

Similar snarkiness was abound, before the release of Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy. They thought it would fail due to its obscurity. I mentioned in a previous article that Marvel seems to do well with obscure properties, especially true with the successes of Blade, Guardians of the Galaxy, and Big Hero 6. Judgments and assumptions were being made before the finished product was released.

Another possibility is now that their obsession has become popular with the mainstream, with the success of Superhero and other comic book based films and television, they do not feel like they belong to an exclusive club anymore. That is why some of their misbehavior to the newer fans. They now feel they have to be too cool and bash anything that deviates from their precious obsessions.

I read an article about the upcoming DC's Legends of Tomorrow. The writer spewed out late Bronze Age fanboy snark. He referred to the Silver Age Atom, Hawkgirl, Hawkman, and Firestorm as obscure. Obscure to the Mainstream audience maybe, and many late 80's to 90's comics book fans. Atom, Hawkman, Firestorm, and Hawkgirl/Hawkwoman were members of the Justice League. Mind you the version of Hawkman and Hawkgirl they are using in the Flash and DC's Legends of Tomorrow are more in line with the Golden Age versions. The Golden Age Hawks were members of the Justice Society of America.

These characters in one form or another have had the own headlining titles. In my opinion that is not obscure, to me Booster Gold and Blue Beetle are more obscure than the Atom, Hawkman and Hawkgirl, and Firestorm. With their appearances in Super Friends, both of the Justice League animated shows, and Batman: the Brave and the Bold, many folks are more familiar with the characters than previously. Rip Hunter, the Master of Time, and White Canary, I agree are obscure. Once again this is before the show’s premiere date, and the assumptions being made are based on the writer’s personal taste and experience. It ignores historical context. What is obscure to one generation is a huge pop culture franchise for another.

Here is an example, Captain Marvel (now referred to as Shazam) was so popular in the 1940’s that National Periodicals (DC Comics’ company name in the 1930’s to 1950’s) sued the parent company, Fawcett Publications, for copying Superman’s powers. Fawcett settled for fear of a prolonged legal battle. No one today would know of that popularity. Captain Marvel’s sales were over twice the amount of Superman’s. The settlement led to Fawcett getting out of comics. This also led to Marvel comics taking over the trademark of the name Captain Marvel. This is why his titles and more recently the character himself have used Shazam in the last 30 years.

It seems like these internet troll types and fanboys are unwilling to learn the history of their beloved obsessions. It is like they do not care that their ignorance shows. This problem seems to be rearing its head in many arenas in today’s society. Ignoring the past means you lack perspective. Also we seem to be in this weird era of celebrating and encouraging ignorance, which is sad.

There is a prevailing attitude of attack it in case it stinks, also is a lousy trend. I try not to make assumptions till the show, movie, or other media is released. Plus I do not care what others think, I like anything unironically. I like the Green Lantern film, but I was very clear to its shortcomings. I like both Ghost Rider films. I like the cheesy movie that is Billy Zane’s Phantom.

Overall I wait till something is out in public before making my decision. Bootlegs of stuff in post-production could be missing parts of it. Sometimes unfinished works get leaked, wait until is has been released properly. There have been films that were improved, because the director was unable to produce the film he wished and released it with his original vision at a later date. There are also a few cases where the studio was right and the later released Director’s cut was less than the original release. Remember Pop Culture is a personal preference.

It also seems that the level of discourse since the advent of the internet has seriously deteriorated. I believe this is due to the perceived anonymity. If they had to use their real names they would be afraid of repercussion to their snark and rudeness. However there are some with public identities that still spew venom and snark. Free Speech is not an excuse to be an ass and being told you are being a jerk is not an attack on your Freedom of Speech either. This Has Been My Not So Humble Opinion. 

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