This Week in Fandom, Volume 119

Welcome to This Week in Fandom, the OTW’s roundup of things which are happening! Before we get started, have you seen the fandom lunch table meme that’s doing the rounds? Where are you sitting? Feel free to set your own challenges in the comments!

As the stars of Supernatural took a break from filming their 15th and final season to show up for a panel at the TCAs (and almost got kicked out of the party before it started), Hannah Collins at CBR took a moment to consider ‘How “Wincest” Became Supernatural Canon’. No, you didn’t read that wrong; the show hasn’t moved onto HBO for its final season. Instead, Collins’s article discusses Supernatural‘s well-known tendency to break the fourth wall. The show’s meta episodes have taken Sam and Dean to a fan convention, to a musical based on their lives, and even to the Vancouver set of Supernatural itself. This willingness on the part of the showrunners to embrace their fandom, to the point of incorporating them into the narrative, might well be one reason for its impressive longevity. And it’s not over yet. Fans of the show’s digressions into metafiction will be pleased to know that in a recent interview, the show’s longstanding executive producer Bob Singer promised one last ‘big, crazy swing’ before the series wraps up.

It’s not just in the Supernatural universe that shippers are making their presence felt. An article by Emma Madden at GQ magazine explores ‘How Queer Fandom Took Control of Our TV’. Madden, a self-confessed femslash enthusiast, traces a narrative from Xena: Warrior Princess through the Glee and Sherlock fandoms to Good Omens and that oh-so-controversial Larry scene from Euphoria. Recognising that some of these shows and showrunners have handled their queer fanbases better than others, Madden suggests that today’s creators are more engaged with their fanbases than ever before and more open to fan suggestions when it comes to canonising ships. ‘You won’t find many TV shows who aren’t seeking the aid of their queer fans anymore,’ she writes. Though the picture may not always seem as rosy as it does here, Madden’s feelgood article is an enjoyable paean to the power of fandom.

Twilight co-stars Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson have both been attracting some attention in advance of their upcoming movie projects. MTV ran a piece based on a remark by Charlie’s Angels director Elizabeth Banks that her directorial vision was driven primarily by the question, ‘What do I want to see Kristen Stewart do in a movie?’, concluding that ‘Charlie’s Angels is basically Kristen Stewart fan fiction’ (and there’s nothing wrong with that!). Meanwhile, Steve Rose at the Guardian has been asking whether Stewart and Pattinson will survive their move into the mainstream; she as an Angel and he in Matt Reeves’ upcoming The Batman. It’s a risky move, Rose argues, for both stars to abandon a flourishing indie career in favour of the blockbuster. But it’s okay. ‘If it all goes wrong, they can always get team Stewpatz back on the road for another Twilight saga’. That might not be a bad idea if you share Caleb Lopshire’s point of view. Writing for the Escapist Magazine, Lopshire explores the relationship between the Twilight and Batman fandoms and concludes with a warm appreciation of Pattinson’s acting work.

And finally, fans were shocked by the August 5 announcement that Netflix will be cancelling The OA after just two seasons, three short of the five that were originally planned.

Worst of all, the move threatens to leave the fans (and the narrative) in permanent suspense after the second season ended on a dramatic cliffhanger. A fan petition for renewal is already running on, with 13,500 signatures at the time of writing. Fingers crossed for a happy outcome like that enjoyed by One Day At A Time!

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This Week in Fandom

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