|Willow (the_willow) wrote,|
@ 2008-08-20 19:42:00
|Entry tags:||#race issues: fandom, fandom: culture, fandom: is, fannish: activity, meta|
Watching The Show In Your Head
Discussing Memoirs of a Geisha with tatterpunk@LJ, here, I stumbled into the thought that watching the show in your head has similarities to privilege and how things are ignored or invisible or immediately dismissed when one re-writes the narrative on the fly.
As I stated here I began to wonder if the difference between watching the show you want to see as a fan (in fandom, discussing the source and interacting with it and having that mentality) and watching the show as a 'mundane' is that discussing the source and talking about it brings you moments of realizing just exactly how and where and why you ended up seeing what you wanted to see.
In Memoirs of a Geisha, I saw tropes I loathed and so I chose to interpret them in ways that made me feel more comfortable with the story and that gave the characters more depth. But I suddenly realized there might be no difference in the actions themselves to someone who chooses not to see the racial problems and dynamics of say SGA with Teyla and Ronon, or racial dynamics in any other tv show or book/fandom property.
When brought up in discussion I can tell you why I chose to see something in a particular way. But while watching it, I don't think I was at all consciously aware of what I was doing. I was so wrapped up in the music and the costumes and the cinematography that I didn't want to have shallow stereotypes ruin things, so I changed my view. I ignored things and created my own fannish reality. If I wrote a review analyzing Memoirs, for example, I'm not sure if I'd have written about the movie I wanted to watch, or the movie I actually did watch. And I wonder if it's only in fandom that someone would understand what I did and understand that my interpretation was my reactions to the things that bothered me and thus were an acknowledgement those things existed.
So I'm suddenly confused about how my re-writing of the story acknowledges what's wrong with it vs how someone else who watched what they wanted to see, might have been blinded by privilege.
Is it privilege to re-write like that?
Is this precisely what infuriates me about the fans who watch SGA for example and see Ronon the MoC Fantasy Fodder and completely miss or dismiss valid notes on racism, colonialism and manifest destiny?
I admit that slash is an example of re-writing thing on the fly. You watch the show and you see subtext and you fill in backstory even if you never write it out as fic (perhaps you postulate in a meta post). But the point is you filter your experience. Is my anger at the fans who dismiss my and others complaints about the hurtful aspects of some shows, as turbulent as it is because I'm already aware they have an ability to filter their experience and I'm angry that they don't consider using my filter?
I'd probably be writing a much less hesitant post if I could figure out the right words to describe this moment of confusilation (it's like illumination, but with confusion)
ETA: Pt 2 (I'm not sure why Metafandom listed it under an SGA tag. But I do discuss SGA in part 2, which I only just posted Saturday the 23rd Aug)