Fanboy culture (Comic-Con, Harry Potter, Twilight, The Hunger Games, The Lord of the Rings, J.J. Abrams, Joss Whedon, Marvel comics, Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, Glee, Aint-It-Cool-News, Attack of the Show) is a groupthink mentality that claims to be democratic, what with its we-know-what’s-best-because-we’re-fans ethic, but is really pop culture fascism.
—Aaron Aradillas, writing at Glenn Kenny’s Some Came Running.
Scratch a ComicCon geek and nine times out of ten you won’t find a shrewd analyzer of popular art or culture or aesthetic expertise. Not necessarily, I mean. What you’ll almost certainly find, I suspect, is someone who’s thisclose to weeping when something gets to him/her emotionally. You’ll find, in short, a woman who’s looking to wet her panties and then cry about it.
—Jeffrey Wells, writing at his own Hollywood Elsewhere.
So, which is it? Are fanboys masculine, mindless brutes crushing dissent and forcing their tastes on the culture like some kind of comic-infused brownshirts? Or are they namby-pamby sissies who just want to have a good cry when something they enjoy moves them? Who’s to say! It’s possible that those immersed in that segment of pop culture labeled “fanboy” are just people who enjoy high-quality entertainment that reminds them of the things they grew up with and value source-faithfulness over medium-expediency. But what do I know?