“A bitching fanboy is a happy fanboy.” I don’t remember the context of the conversation, but I’m certain that I was complaining about something related to geek culture when my friend dropped this gem. It’s true! Rarely is a geek happier than when he is picking apart something he claims to love.
As geeks, we love finding the most miniscule imperfection in the otherwise flawless. Gatherings of geeks are swamped with conversations of this kind. Fans complain about the sound of Iron Man’s repulsors, the color of Superman’s cape, or Wolverine’s height. While riding an escalator on my first visit to NY Comic Con, I heard a guy on a microphone off in a corner delivering a manifesto: “…What they did to Green Lantern was a travesty!!” I wasn’t sure what they had done to Green Lantern, but I was almost certain that whatever it was, it was not quite a ‘travesty.’
This being my introduction into the comic geek life, I didn’t quite know what he was talking about, but he was definitely bitching, and he was pretty damn happy doing it.
This is what people expect from fanboys. They expect to see a crazy guy, badly dressed, probably living with his parents, attempting to eviscerate something he claims to love with poor reasoning and questionable sentence structure.
Looking at this a bit less cynically, it becomes clear that this man was talking passionately about something. What geeks love even more than bitching about their obsessions, is talking about them. We talk about our loves to anyone who will listen, and frequently we even do it to those who aren’t willing (in fact, a captive audience is often more fun!). More than one wife/girlfriend/sibling/parent/friend has been subjected to this particular form of torment. Even more than complaining, you hear long-winded discussions of all the awesome and cool things your geek loved about the new Iron Man movie, the newest World of Warcraft expansion, or the latest issue of Saga. The truth of the matter is that geeks take their culture almost as seriously as religion. We are preachers, missionaries, and evangelists. We spread the “good word” wherever and whenever we can, converting non-believers if at all possible.
With this in mind, I start this blog. I’ll talk about those great things in geek culture that I enjoy and share insights I have positively, but honestly. If something doesn’t quite measure up, I won’t pull punches, but then again I won’t be breaking out the chainsaws either.
So without further ado, Engage!