Fandoms Unite


Mary Claghorn

Fandom is a word that branches across different hobbies, cultures and interests.

They have taken over people’s lives to show their love toward an object or idolization of someone. Tumblr blogs are dedicated to them, large collections and shrines are created for them, and fanfiction is written about them.

Screen Shot 2015-04-22 at 12.09.35 PMThe entertainment industry plays on comic books being a main focus of fandoms like on the television show “Big Bang Theory.” Also the recognition of the famous convention Comic Con expanding the comic book industry. Every year in San Diego, people dress up and celebrities show up to be a part of the 35-year tradition. In an interview on KPBS, a radio station in California, Maureen Cavanaugh interviewed marketing and public relations manager Marney Cox about the revenue Comic Con brings into the San Diego district.

Cox said more than 125,000 visitors flock to Comic Con each day of the convention. By the end of the weekend, up to $60 million is spent directly toward the convention. This shows the revenue industries, companies and people can gain from the love people have toward objects and people.

Since One Direction’s formation in 2010, a following of girls called Directioners has developedScreen Shot 2015-04-22 at 12.03.02 PM an obsession with them. Directioners follow the band, standing outside their house and even attempting to buy the band to break their contract. Forbes Magazine estimates the band is worth $75 million, making them the richest boy band in United Kingdom history. Zayn Malik, one of the members, left the band along with his estimated net worth of $23 million on March 25. It is not just the band’s talent that led them to this level of recognition and wealth, but their fans.

“I’m not really sure why I like One Direction. Their music is really good and they are pretty attractive. Their music is really upbeat and it makes me happy,” senior Katelyn Mooney said.

There are also fandoms behind video games. One of them is “League of Legends,” a multiplayer battle game where players can battle with anyone online. According to the game’s publisher, Riot Games, as of January 2014 more than 67 million people play per month, 27 million per day and 7.5 million during peak hours. The game has turned into a massive tournament with a “League of Legends” Championship Series. This consists of the top 10 players from every continent coming together to battle one another.

Screen Shot 2015-04-22 at 12.03.35 PMSophomore Kyle Klezmer is an avid “League of Legends” player. He does not only avidly play himself, but wants to get the school involved by trying to jump start a club for next year.

“New people can meet and have fun,” Klezmer said. “The difference between us and other clubs is you can go home and still play with your friends outside of school.”

Fandoms can be more than an obsession, but a connection between people. Whether it is a comic book, a band or a video game, it brings together people through something they are most passionate about. Junior Elizabeth Grimes considers herself not in a fandom, but still sees how people can enjoy being in one.

“I think there is a fandom for anything if more than two people like it,” she said. “I think [fandoms] are interesting because it shows how dedicated you are to something specific and you love it so much you share that love with other people, and it just builds up and builds up until it is just this entire conglomeration of people who really like something.”