Fangirl Friday – Fandom Midwife

Today is a very special day. We’re going to talk about a beautiful event: birthing someone into a fandom.

Coming into a new fandom is a lot like being born. Sometimes it’s fast, easy, and plop! We’re in a new world full of promise and hope. Sometimes, it’s excruciatingly slow, with long and painful labor, and we emerge into a new life kicking and screaming. I’ve had both happen to me, and everything in between. The best experience though, is being someone else’s midwife. Guiding them into the world, watching their face light up, hearing them express their joy and wonder and opinions for the first time is… well, it can be addictive.

Currently, I am inducting my dear friend Kelly into the Buffyverse. She missed it the first time around, though her sister watched both the Buffy and Angel tv series, mostly because of her age. However, at nearly 21, she’s ripe for the humor and pathos woven into this particular universe of Joss Whedon‘s making. Plus, she prefers her vampires to NOT sparkle.

We’ve already finished seasons one and two, and are about to start season three. It’s so difficult when she says she loves this or that character to keep my mouth shut about their future on the show. Sometimes I’m very good about not spoiling her, but I do often slip up and blurt something out. For example? Every time Spike comes on screen, I give commentary. I can’t help it. I say things like, “did you see how, given a perfect opportunity, she failed to kill him?” Or, “Oh just wait! You’ll see!” And then I cackle. I smirk and cackle, causing her to glare at me.

My mom, who is watching most of it with us, doesn’t help. She’s always asking for spoilery knowledge when the suspense gets to be too much. “Is Jenny (Calendar) in the whole series? Oh, she’s gonna die, isn’t she?” I bit my tongue almost hard enough to bruise when she asked THAT one. It was such a relief when that question was answered on the show.

It’s amazing to see the conclusions Kelly draws. After “getting to know” Angel, she gave me the side-eye and asked if Stephanie Meyer based Edward off of him. I chortled with glee. I thought that too. I mean, they even have the same hair. Who knows if she did or not, but it’s fun to think about.

I can’t wait to get through the rest of the shows with her and, possibly, the comics. Then we can really get down to spinning theories! It’s absolutely fantastic to revisit familiar territory with new eyes pointing out things from a different perspective. She catches things that I never did, and I see and hear foreshadowing that I missed before, like Xander saying, “once more, with tension.”

What about you? Down what primrose path have you led a friend? Or what have they taught you? Are you still friends?

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6 Comments »

  1. Oh, that it is a fun one! I remember when I first inducted my best friend into the Buffyverse fandom! And then I actually dragged my boyfriend at the time into it as well. THAT was awesome, let me tell you. I’m always trying to get my friends hooked on the shows I’m obsessed with, and (thankfully, I have friends with similar tastes) I usually succeed. I’ve inducted Buffy, Stargate, Star Trek, and Doctor Who fans on several occasions. It’s such a joy!

    • Gigi Salem said

      what about… Firefly?

      Speaking of the Doctor… how are you liking 11? And how did you like the new ST movie? Ohhhh we’re in for it now, you’re just going to have to be part of my inner circle, I can TELL…

  2. Siobhan/Christine said

    I am attempting to induct my children but as they are 6 and 9 I have to move slowly – no buffy yet. And the 6-year-old like vampires that sparkle. Oh, where have I gone wrong…

    Love Buffy. I’ve had Buffy dreams. They are too cool.

    • Gigi Salem said

      How are they with the Harry Potter?

      And really? All six-year-olds like things that sparkle. Just… have you read Breaking Dawn? That’s not suitable for kidlets in ANY way.

      Maybe wait for the kids to be the Scooby Gang’s age before watching the show, but play them the soundtrack of the musical episode?

  3. When I was in High School, I led one of my friends into the world of Country Music. I told him to give groups like Alabama and Garth Brooks a chance.

    A funny thing happened: He became hooked, and now I don’t really care for the style anymore. Curiouser and Curiouser.

    It was great meeting you today at the WWBC. Do keep in touch!

    • Gigi Salem said

      Isn’t the evolution of fandom (your own and others) fascinating? I used to despise all things country, and now I adore quite a few artists of that genre.

      **goes over to your blog to subscribe**

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