File this under things I abhor, fans who blame women for their favorite shows being “ruined.” There has been a lot of discussion about the new Doctor Who. Let me be transparent, I’m not much of a Doctor Who fan. I watched some of the seasons with David Tennant and Matt Smith. Of course, I watched the episode written by Neil Gaiman.
With that out of the way, fuck everyone citing the failure of Capaldi’s Doctor as the fault of fangirls. BTW according to the statistics supported by Gallyfrey Base, the Capaldi seasons didn’t perform worse. The decline in viewership numbers reflects the increase in watching asynchronously (as in DVRs and buying episodes from streaming services). So in the end, it isn’t a real decline at all.
And even if women didn’t like Capaldi that likely wouldn’t matter to TV/Film execs who rarely consider women a target audience.
For the record: I didn’t like Capaldi. Not because he wasn’t hot – or whatever. But because the few episodes I caught with him, he came across as a bully – and I don’t do shows with assholes in the lead. White guys being assholes is real life for me. Further, as Moffet gets more and more bad press for being a misogynist tool, I find it harder and harder to enjoy a show that he profits from. Perhaps more people should stop supporting him (which may be another issue).
Further, even if there’s a fan base that only watches DW because the actor was/is hot… Why is that wrong? Where’s the demarcation of “real fan” vs “fan for the wrong reason?” I watch a variety of shows for a variety of reasons. Often I’m looking for innovative story telling. After finishing grad school (with a literature degree), I find a lot of storytelling to be predictable and honestly boring. In contrast, I also adore comfortable shows. After 13 seasons, I still come back to Supernatural. Is it ground breaking tv? Nope. But it’s familiar. It’s full of characters I like. However, even if I watched it because the stars were hot, why would that be a problem?
I know that Hollywood doesn’t care about women audiences. They act like every high grossing film that women love is a fluke. I don’t see any evidence that BBC is more enlightened in their thinking.
What evidence exists to support that BBC chose a younger man is the fault of women viewers (other than fans looking to blame women for something)? The fan base has been clamoring for a diverse Doctor – but nowhere in those discussions (in media outlets) did I hear people calling for a younger Doctor. In fact, most of the actors I saw (Gillian Anderson, Ildris Elba, and Tilda Swinton) are far from TV standards of young.
This outcry of blaming (what I believe are non-existent) fangirls for changing a show is scaffolded by misogyny, with perhaps a dash of “fake fangirl” for good measure. Fans, regardless of the franchise, have little if no control over their shows (even if they develop an attitude of entitlement). Ask Star Trek fans about Enterprise if you are unclear. ST has a history of being the most interested in fans (including the OST accepting fan scripts). Yet they made a shitty spinoff that most fans publically and vocally hated. Why? Because some exec somewhere thought it would make money.
So that’s the thing fans, we don’t own our favorites. This is someone else’s art. If you don’t like it, get over your ‘fan girls ruin everything mindset’ and visit us in the land of fanfic. You know the place where fangirls go to MAKE the show they want – all without whining (at least much) about how the overwhelmingly white, male writers (directors, execs, and actors) make all the choices.