Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Ultra-Fandom: Five Perplexing Fan Followings




Fandom is nothing new. There have been fan clubs popping up for all manner of TV shows, films, products and more for as long as people have had the means to share their interests. While most of these tend to fall within relatively tame boundaries, there are some fan followings that just take it to the next level. So read on and check out five media ventures that have found followings fanatical to the point of being just a bit puzzling!

The 'Bronies'

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It’s surprising at all that there’s a fan club for those devoted to My Little Pony. Kids love all that stuff, right? Well, not quite. There’s a clique amongst fans of this particular kids’ cartoon series known as the ‘Bronies’, who are adult, male fans who openly and proudly profess their love for the multi-coloured little equine critters. Activities of this loose association of fanatics mainly include hair-dyeing, dressing up, uploading videos of MLP collectables and getting together at annual conventions to discuss all things pony related.

The Juggalos

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We’re not sure why (we’ve never been huge fans) but the Insane Clown Posse are one of those who just managed to draw a huge fan following. Rather than meekly getting together to listen to ICP records and ruminate on the quality of the band, Juggalos don full face-paint in honour of their chosen idols and go into the world to sing their praises. Also having their own greetings and dress codes, the puzzling thing about the Juggalos is just that it’s hard to tell how serious they are. Is it a real, earnest lifestyle choice, or just some tongue-in-cheek fun? Impossible to say!


To get a feel for the Juggalo way of life, check out this hilarious sketch from Funny or Die:


The Trekkies

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Trekkies have been around for years, and everyone is familiar with the level of devotion and attention to detail brought to the table by these fans. Perhaps the original cult fan following, Trekkies have set the bar and defined the stereotype of all that is geeky. To this day, the Star Trek devotee remains symbolic of the sci-fi subculture, and parodies have cropped up in countless films and TV shows. With an encyclopaedic knowledge of every episode and a solid technical grasp of the show’s gadgets, Trekkies are known for their willingness to really go the extra mile and can often be seen at sci-fi conventions in immaculately presented costumes.


Whovians

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Whovians are dedicated fans of the British science fiction series, Doctor Who. Conventions are held worldwide with the first being held in 1977. Fanzines first appeared in the 1970s took the form of hand-written and mail-distributed newsletters. In recent years, since the show’s revival on the BBC, Dr Who fandom has grown hugely and now groups of fans can be found in costume, wielding sonic screwdrivers and congregating at numerous gathers for just such people.


WD-40

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Before you think this is a mistake, please note this is not a misprint. The water displacing spray does have a fan club, who would have thought? The fan club for this spray which was developed in 1953 is large and while the spray is useful to have in your toolbox, fans enjoy sharing their stories, tips and tricks and they even have their own newsletter. Hey, whatever floats your boat.


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