TOP TEN – RABID FANDOMS
In its 50 year history Doctor Who’s evolution has gone through some interesting phases; what was originally considered a silly sci-fi clunker by the BBC became a beloved Saturday night tradition for generations of British families before traipsing across the pond to rise as an underground cult hero to American 80’s nerds. Now thanks to the slick modern reboot and the powers of the internet, Doctor Who lives on, slowly gaining momentum as the largest science fiction fandom in history. With an ever revolving door of villains and charming companions, and 12 versions of the title’s wandering hero, there is someone for literally every fan to cosplay. Just watch every con from here on out, Doctors posing in a bowtie and fez, converse, or a long ass scarf continue to largely outnumber any other character. Of course that could be chalked up to due to the high comfort factor…I’m not entirely sure I want to know how Stormtroopers use the bathroom.
Sherlock /Sherlockians or Cumberbitches
It makes zero sense how such a normal and down to Earth show inspired such ridiculously deranged devotion…that is until you get lost in Benedict Cumberbtach’s stormy eyes then time stops and you go all gooey inside and what were we talking about again? BBCs modern version of the classic detective has Benedict as Sherlock, a brilliant and sexually frustrated genius who feels like nobody in the world understands him but his one obsessively close friend…I mean seriously, tumblr never stood a chance.
My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic/Bronies
So I watched a bunch of these to try to understand the Brony phenomenon and I just don’t get it. I’m not one to judge, but I can’t understand why adults connect with it let alone the bros. It’s just a crappy 80’s cartoon reboot, sparkly pony tails aside it’s barely watchable. But the community has exploded online and in real life shouting “love and tolerate” in everyone’s faces. Forums and cons are absolutely flooded with Bronies these days and you have to admit they’re some of the most creative people out there. The scene’s fan art is seriously impressive to the point that the official Hasboro plastic ones pale in comparison to the fan made dolls…not to mention the creepy accuracy of the homage pony porn. Because rule 34 of the internet.
The surprisingly long-lasting CW drama about two beautiful pouty brothers traveling the country to fight demons and work out daddy issues has an increasingly crazed fanbase. Famous for “having a gif for everything” these obsessed girls ages 13 and waaay up lurk on tumblr just waiting for an opportunity to change any innocuous post into something about Supernatural. But it’s not their fault, with 9 seasons worth of death and feels to process after about the 5th time Dean dies most just snap and start incoherently posting pictures of Jared Ackles with #pie over and over into oblivion.
Joss Whedon/Whedon-ites or Browncoats
Joss Whedon creator of: Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Dollhouse, Firefly, Serenity, Dr. Horrible’s Sing-a-long Blog, The Avengers, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Fans of cult icon Joss Whedon are gluttons for punishment who knowingly sign up to suffer loudly at the deaths of beloved characters. Then cry even more when the opportunity to kill everyone you ever loved is cut short every time a show is canceled. Whedon’s fans are a people who passionately worship at the altar of emotional turmoil and sarcasm, willing to keep the flame burning for characters we never fully got to know and others who have been off TV for over ten years and thus make do with tons of fan art and creator penned comic books. With his recently brilliant takes on Shakespeare and Marvel and the internet clamoring for Joss to put his stamp on a new Star Wars movie, it’s very possible he’s building a worldwide nerd empire one fandom at a time.
Vlog Brothers Hank and John Green/Nerdfighters
A Nerdfighter is one who instead of being made of cells and tissue and stuff is made purely of awesome. Not only is Nerdfightaria easily the internet’s most positive fandom, it may have the most schwag too. First there’s the mission statement to decrease world suck, the motto DFTBA (don’t forget to be awesome!) and of course the gang sign (see above). With their 12 Youtube channels and combined total of over nine million views, brothers Hank and John Green have not only won the internet they did it by giving teenagers a safe and positive community of good advice and sharing feelings. And those shiny happy teens in turn band together every December to do good and support all kinds of charities in the Vlogbrother’s Project 4 Awesome, and In 2013 ran an Indigogo crusade so successful it became the most funded web campaign in Indiegogo history. On top of all that older brother John is an award winning YA author mostly known for the recent hugely popular movie based on his hugely popular book The Fault in Our Stars. It’s the reason your niece is suddenly crying all the tears and using a cigarette as a metaphor. With the rabid adoration of so many emotionally fueled teens we’re seriously lucky these two are so far away from Slytherin their actually Hufflepuff.
The Colbert Report/Colbert Nation
If you doubt that Stephen Colbert is a cult leader than you haven’t been paying attention. The charismatic host of TV’s second best fake news show wields some very real power even if he does it with a wink. He sent marching orders to the Colbert Nation to vote en masse and get his name on EVERYTHING from animals and sports team mascots to a NASA treadmill. The Smithsonian agreed to hang his portrait in the National Portrait Gallery for 4 months! It was a joke but still that’s impressive. I can’t wait until Stephen Colbert is president, and let’s not kid ourselves, that day is coming. Hopefully it marks the beginning of new political parties of ironic stereotype candidates playing characters of the politicians they actually disagree with…it just might be crazy enough to work.
Who knew that Gene Roddenberry’s 1966 cheesy space opus would spawn six television series, twelve movie and for some an entire lifestyle? The original haven of the rabid fanboy, Trekkies have always been uber devoted and thus often-mocked as. And though “Trekkie” may be the first fandom nickname ever it’s now considered by some to be a derogatory depiction of the gross socially awkward fan like say, the Comic Book Guy, so the PC term is Trekkers now thank you very much. Anyone who has ever been in an episode has a job for life signing autographs on the convention circuit and with the new movie reboot we can be assured many more years of weird things translated into Klingon.
Potterheads tend to be somewhat quieter than other groups on this list, I guess that’s to be expected from the fandom of cuddly scarves, big dusty books and the world’s only four-eyed Hero. These are the fans that are going to spend the rest of their lives puttering around on Pottermore, making pilgrimages to Diagon Alley in Florida and shedding a tear over every beautiful “always” tattoo they see on Pinterest. A Potterhead will always be able to tell you which house they’re sorted into, what their Patronus is and exactly what they think about Rowling’s Harry/Hermione confession. There’s also tons of terrifying fanfic involved for some reason. You’ve been warned.
Insane Clown Posse/ Juggalos
Fans of the one and only nightmare clown rap genre Insane Clown Posse, Juggalos are indeed rabid, as in rabid pack of dogs. At least that’s how they seem to the outside world, but apparently they’re actually a misunderstood group of individuals who are all about tolerance and acceptance. To be fair face tattoos and chain wallets don’t exactly scream peace-loving so you can see where the confusion comes from. Juggalos claim to be just outsiders who have banded together over common interests like horror movies, wrestling and soda. And thus the Juggalo Industry is a thing; from wearing HatchetGear clothing to exclusively drinking Faygo soda this self-proclaimed “family” sticks to it’s own. The Gathering of the Juggalos is such a widely attended event of intensely and almost scarily devoted fans that in 2011 the FBI declared the Juggalos a gang. A bonafide gang of backyard wrestlers who probably spent the morning painstakingly applying their clown makeup while listening to angry horrorcore before heading to drug bridge to get all kinds of hopped up. Remind me to NEVER go to there.
Alas I had to narrow it down to only ten for this list and thus I apologize to the fans of Homestuck, Avatar: The Last Airbender and Legend of Korra, Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, Pokemon, Soul Eater, Model War, Hannibal, Breaking Bad, Walking Dead, Game of Thrones, Disney, Marvel, DC, Hello Kitty, K-Pop, Halo, Final Fantasy, Divergent, Hunger Games and all you Ringers, Beliebers, Gleeks, Twihards, Weirdos, Parrotheads, Little Monsters, Trubies, Directioners, Gaimanites, Hiddlestoners and Pine Nuts out there. Please don’t flame me.~AS