With season three of Teen Wolf looming over us, the anticipation of fandom’s reaction has already exhausted me out before an episode has aired. This hiatus has worn me out. The show running has me worn out. But why? Fandom has consistently been recycling the same argument about the conditionality of Scott Mccall’s status as the central protagonist of this show. He is the literal and titular teen wolf; this is an objective statement. Scott’s MC status is special in the context of media and genre; he’s one of the few People of Color (PoC) characters starring in a show for a genre that has hardly been kind to marginalized groups. It’s downright sickening how fandom has received his existence since its inception, and the pattern, which relies heavily - though not always inherently - on racist over- and undertones, has persisted. No one is saying you have to like Scott, but to deny that there is a prevalent problem with how fandom underappreciates him and how fandom vilifies his fans by now referring to them as “overly defensive stans” exhibit glaring fallacies in fandom dynamics.
Let’s not forget that this same fandom consistently downplayed Scott’s importance to his own show that people didn’t even know of his existence before watching it. Let’s not forget how fandom superimposed much of Scott’s narrative and traits onto Stiles and victim-blamed and belittled Scott’s trauma. Let’s not forget the ableist memes surrounding this character, the most recent trend being “Moon Moon”. Let’s not forget the adamant arguments that displayed racist ideologies across the board to explain why Scott shouldn’t be the main character and the white sidekick should replace him.* These are only a few examples, but the purpose of writing this post isn’t to give you a chronology of Scott hate in fandom (you can go through this blog to do that).
I’m here to write why characters like Scott Mccall are so important for the supernatural/horror/fantasy genre and why it’s problematic when white fans demean embittered Scott fans as “overly defensive stans” when fandom questions the validity of Scott’s heroism.
Every time someone excuses dylan or tyler h. for something they say i remember that time the fandom called posey homophobic for not understanding sterek
Why am I so angry with this MTV article about Sterek’s win in the E!online poll?
Because major entertainment sites keep telling me how ridiculous I am for expecting queer people to have the same kind of stories and potential that straight people do (including but not limited to: straight is not…
Okay, so a lot of this makes complete sense and I totally agree that Jeff should stop beating around the bush and just come out and say that Sterek isn’t happening, but at the same time he can’t. He and MTV know that Sterek is popular and there’s no way either of them are going to do anything to piss the viewers off. That’s just the name of the game. Teen Wolf might be an amazing show, but the goal is to make money, and if “queer baiting” and dragging fans along as long as they can equates to high ratings and money, then that’s what’s going to continue to happen. It’s a business and we are the people who buy into it. No, it’s not fair, and yes, it’s a pretty shitty thing to do, but it all comes down to money and ratings.
At the same time, a lot of this is very hypocritical. You cannot complain about lack of queer representation and storylines all while promoting Sterek and ignoring Danny, the queer character on the show. Stiles and Derek are not canon, therefore ignoring Danny for them goes against the idea that you truly want queer representation. Instead of standing up and saying, “We want Sterek because we want a queer relationship,” you should be standing up and saying, “Give Danny, the ACTUALLY queer character an actual storyline.” But most Sterek fans don’t do that because they don’t care about queer representation, all they care about is Sterek.
At the end of the day, these articles are nothing to get upset over. This is what happens when you become so engrossed in a fandom/ship that you completely lose sight of what is real and what is not.
Lately I’ve been really into weird concepts of something like failed, desperate, self-conscious deliberate performative femininity? Part of this is evidenced by the fact that I’ve been doing my hair in big curls with my kinda-crappy-blonde-dye-job and wearing a ridiculous faux-leopard coat with ripped tights and messy eyeliner, and part of it comes together more in at least 47 different e-mail conversations about books and movies with “unrepentantly fucked up” lady characters that I’ve been having with at least 5 different people of late. Some of these ideas have been written very eloquently by other folks already, and some of it is obvious and some of it is still vague, and all of it is definitely not “complete,” so, like, go at it in the comments, y’all, I wanna know what you’re thinking.
It begins, I think, with my ongoing frustration that when we are presented with male characters (or personas, or even real persons) who are basically bad people with one redeeming quality (still sleeps with a teddy bear, is a brilliant filmmaker) we let that one redeeming quality, you know, redeem them, and are collectively charmed by their fucked-up-ness. But I have a really hard time coming up with similar female examples: all of the ones I can think of we have opted to either lambast or concern-troll instead. And we always need to redeem them. They always need to learn something or be rescued, which we all know is basically the opposite of how the world really works. Kids, I am a hot mess, and almost all of the women I admire and love and am fascinated by are also hot fucking messes, and I so rarely see that represented in a real, nuanced, and fascinating way. To simplify: I am eternally tearing my hair out over the fact that I desperately want more female antiheroes. In books, film, pop culture personas, whatever. And I’ve been seeing this idea come up again and again lately.
As a brief list of some of what I’m referencing: There’s this Lana Del Rey album review, which is kind of the most astute thing I’ve read on her yet, and which hit the nail on the head of my bizarre, obsessive preoccupation with her and her aesthetic — though it condemned her where I obviously am fascinated instead. There was that Marie Calloway brouhaha, and the fantastic response to it all from Kate Zambreno, which also lead to The Rejectionist’s interview with her here. There were a bunch of folks over at Emily Books who managed to somehow misread a lot of lesbian moralism into Eileen Myles’ Inferno, when I thought it was just a book about, like, someone very funny and intelligent and unapologetic, who also lived a life that reminds me an awful lot of my life now. There was Charlize Theron in Young Adult, who would have been way fascinating if not for Diablo Cody’s frustrating insistence on de-nuancing her characters in favor of twee trope-tastic banter. There’s Cat Marnell at XOJane and the no-nonsense-it’s-okay-to-be-human writing at Rookie. Sarah’s and my Rayanne Project (which sort of fizzled out probably partially because I am a little bit too much of a whacked-out womanchild to coordinate and motivate folks to write me things like that, but the stuff that’s up there is still amazeballs!) The Amy-Winehouse-inspired couture collection that Gaultier showed yesterday. Courtney Love, like, in general.
I am really into this, you guys.
this is so good i had to read it twice.
the second time? it made me cry.
i want those antiheroes too. i wanted those antiheroes when i was a teenager, and i wanted them five years ago, and i want them today and tomorrow.
i wish i could have read something like these when i was twenty-one and heartbroken. heartbroken because my best friend called me a slut, told me i was sleeping around because i wasn’t over my ex-boyfriend, the only reason i was sleeping with women was because i wanted approval from boys, that i wasn’t really in love with the person i was in love with and that an open relationship was just a code word for whore. i tried to tell her, drunkenly, angrily, no, i sleep with women because i find them attractive, and want to sleep with them. my sex life isn’t about me not being “over” something, anything. my drinking is about me wanting to get drunk, and just because sometimes when i get drunk i go home with people i don’t know very well and sometimes have awesome sex with them does not mean i am trying to block out some traumatic experience, or that i am desperate for approval.
after a lot of time had passed i realized so much of what she said to me wasn’t, in fact, about me at all. it was about these boring tried and untrue tropes we have for women who don’t fit into a tiny little box of what a “good” girl is supposed to be. it was the first time in my life i realized how pervasive the idea that “women have sex for any number of other reasons than sexual pleasure” is. that women have sex because “they want to feel loved.” that women have sex with strangers because they were abandoned by their daddy/sexually abused/etc. etc. etc.
how many aspects of our lives, of our experiences, are judged based on how messy we look, how messy we are? how many of us LOOK messy because it is the only way we can look in the mirror and feel like it is an accurate reflection of how we feel on the inside?
i love that meg talks about this in a way that is clear, that is awesome, that makes me want to hop on a bus to nyc and conquer the world in ripped fishnet stockings and smeared makeup and greasy unwashed hair. you should read it.
also this part from another reblog:
yes additional note blacks, latinos and asians would also like room for being a hot mess while being a main character and not be turned into a caricature
Scott isn’t a good Alpha, not yet. He’s about as far away from it as Derek, possibly farther and that’s not my fondness for Derek talking.
just because you say one thing doesn’t mean you’re actually doing the action you say you’re not doing
my lord shut up about a scott’s a saint trend AIN’T NOBODY REASONABLE IS SAYING SCOTT’S A SAINT AIN’T NOBODY ERASING SCOTT’S MISTAKES Y’ALL LOVE TO MAGNIFY AS THESE DEPLORABLE AND INHUMANE ACTS OF INJUSTICE WHEN OH WAIT Y’ALL JUSTIFY THE HELL OUT OF DEREK OR STILES’ FUCK UPS BECAUSE TRAGEDY MINIMISES ACCOUNTABILITY APPARENTLY
I’m gonna be real honest, this whole Team Human(TM) thing needs to die and stay dead.
#that bullshit about ‘an archer an immune and a human who runs with wolves’ or whatever the fuck #no #stop it #because those three people LITERALLY WOULD NOT INTERACT TOGETHER w/o Scott #their common link isn’t that they’re all human… their common link is SCOTT #idk how many more times I need to say it #THEY DON’T EXIST AS A UNIT W/O SCOTT OK!!!!!!!!! #(basically I see this Team Human(TM) bs as another way for the fandom to erase Scott and I’m not here for it)