This comic book is worse than a kitten holocaust.
DC Comics recently finished Final Crisis
, one of those sprawling epics that comic companies do every so often. Reviews are mixed, with some folks feeling that it was a perfectly fine bit of superhero drama, and others thinking that it was a foul abomination straight from the anus of Satan himself.
Geeks can’t simply dislike something. It’s impossible for them to say, “Sorry, that’s just not my thing” and get on with their lives, much less accept that it still may appeal to someone else. Since every geek is an expert on filmmaking, novel-writing, comic-book-creating, music-producing, videogame-designing, and toy-producing, they can be certain that if they didn’t like something, it’s clearly a fault of the thing.
Since geeks will happily remind you that they “pay the bills” for companies that make things for them, they take it as a personal insult when they feel those companies have failed to deliver. A substandard comic book or videogame is not just a misstep, it’s a slap in the face, a “fuck you” to the fans, and it needs to be dealt with harshly, lest the company not learn from their egregious mistake*. Many keyboards will need to feel righteously angry fingertips before the geek will be satisfied. If the company isn’t careful, he may even begin a geek boycott.
Any geek who actually dared to like this offensive afterbirth of a product must be similarly treated harshly. The first thing to do is to ascertain that the person who supposedly appreciates this filthy insult isn’t just a troll. To go back to the example that started this entry, when one comics blogger said of Final Crisis, “Loved it“, he immediately got commenters who wanted him to clarify exactly what he meant by such a cryptic statement.
The geek must ensure that the people who liked this thing he hates are aware of how wrong they are. Since he comes to all his opinions through precise logic, he knows that the reason he disliked the product is because it was irredeemable crap. Therefore, the people who do claim to like it must either be lying or stupid. In the latter case it will be up to the geek to illustrate “reasons” why his superior knowledge of the medium means he is right, the product is awful, and anyone who disagrees is wrong.
It is tempting to say that this fanatical hatred is simply the flip side of the fanatical devotion the geek shows to the things he enjoys, and to a certain extent, this is the case. However, the fact that geeks have such hairtriggers on disliking things, racing each other to be the first to point out in how many ways something they only just now found out about “sucks”, seems to indicate that this blind hatred is actually desirable and comforting, moreso than the overweening devition.
Hate leads to condescension, which leads to superiority, and that’s why geeks LOVE hatred!
– Unless it was produced by Joss Whedon, Neil Gaiman, Tim Burton, or some other geek icon
who can do no wrong, in which case it’s only “just a misstep” if blame can’t be shifted to some meddling “other”.