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TV/Media Commentary and Societal Insights. With a Beard.
The whole concept of being a “fan” of something has exploded in the past few years, no doubt thanks to things like the internet, and the internet, as well as the internet. Being totally in love with and knowing everything about the thing you like no longer makes you a nerd, it’s just kind of accepted. Movie fans, sports fans, music fans, video game fans—everyone’s on the same level now in terms of societal acceptance of utter devotion, now that it’s so much easier to form a fan community with people all across the globe.
That being said, there’s still a huge chunk of fans that are on a wholly different playing field. People that become well-known staples within the fanbase—running websites, moderating message boards, crafting loads of fanfiction, fanart and GIFs, organizing campaigns, travelling to conventions, following concerts. I myself have pretty much gotten out of the habit of being crazy intense with fansites after some bad experiences. Now, I don’t want it to sound like “I don’t participate in fandom” because I’m a pretentious dick or something. I mean, I kind of am a pretentious dick, but not about this stuff. In fact, me not being able to get too fully immersed in some of the most intense fandoms just means I don’t have the balls to be in them, and here’s why.
It’s common knowledge among our generation that Buffy the Vampire Slayer played a big role in the development of TV series. If you’re a moderate TV buff, or have visited TV Tropes even once (seriously, there’s a Buffy reference on almost every page) you’re probably aware that many tropes in current serialized genre shows–Big Bads, half arc seasons, weirdness sensors, Chekhov’s guns, heavy continuity–were either invented or popularized by Buffy. Even if you don’t like it, you can’t deny the impact it’s had on how we watch TV.
Unsurprisingly on shows within the same genre or airing on the same network, there’s bound to be even more similarities in plot structures, characters, etc. Sometimes, though, the similarities and parallels border on eerie. Surely the writers might have similar genre shows in the back of their heads, but at a certain point it just seems weird. Two shows specifically brought me to writing this up, both of which are cult genre shows that originated on The WB Network–Smallville andSupernatural.
Check out my entry on Smallville‘s final season here, but today I’ll be comparing the season 6 of Supernatural and Buffy. Read it after the jump!