5 Fandom Friday: Gateway Fandoms

fandom.5.friday

SuperSpaceChick and The Nerdy Girlie are hosting a weekly link-up of sorts, 5 Fandom Friday. It’s a weekly list of 5 things about various aspects of geekery, fandom, and our own blogging personality. If you want to follow other bloggers venture into 5 Fandom Friday, be sure to follow the hashtag #Fandom5, and follow SuperSpaceChick and The Nerdy Girlie on Twitter.

To kick off 5 Fandom Friday, we’re talking about the 5 fandoms that were my gateway into geekery. So let’s kick it off with a gif from one of my current favorite fandoms. Dean?

dean

1. Star Wars

R2D2-Talking-1A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away, my  mother sat my younger brother and I down in front of the television. She popped Star Wars: Episode IV, A New Hope into the VCR, saying it was important that we saw the Star Wars movies. It was one of my first real tastes of sci-fi, and it’s also worth noting that Mark Hamill and Harrison Ford were my first real Hollywood crushes that were not either JTT or a member of Hanson. While I certainly knew, even in my kid brain, that the movies were dated, I was completely captivated. For some reason, I had it in my head that girls couldn’t be Jedi (not sure where I got that), even though I secretly really wanted to be a member of the Jedi, or at least a kick-ass rebel like Princess Leia (when I was a teacher, I had to try really hard to not freak out when I had a student in my study hall named Leia). For a while, my screen name was even jedigirl88. The obsession was strong with this one.

2. Star Trek

KHAAAAAANMy parents’ love for Star Wars is nothing compared to their love of Star Trek. The only thing that is keeping them from full-on stereotypical Trekkie nerddom is a firm grasp of Klingon and a trip or two to a Star Trek convention. Just like my mother made sure my brother and I watched Star Wars, she also made sure we watched every Star Trek movie, as well as episodes of the original Star Trek series. Say what you will about Star Trek VI: A Voyage Home, but “colorful metaphors” and “nuclear wessles” are still a very large part of my family’s vocabulary to this very day.

3. The Lord of the Rings

no friendsI had the very rare opportunity to go to a tiny school that was FILLED with LOTR freaks. Once the movies came out, it became tradition that the sophomore class would actually go on school field trips to see the movie, and read whatever book was being released in English class. When the first movie came out, however, our school was small enough that we all (my school only had 7th-10th graders at the time) went to see the movie in theaters. A couple of weeks before our field trip, I got the bright idea that I wanted to read Fellowship before I saw the first movie.

As it would turn out, those books are pretty darn big and pretty dense. So that didn’t happen. However, I was completely captivated by the movie, and I went on to read every single book and see every single movie (extended versions, too), several times over.

There was a time in my life that closed captioning taught me to say “under the armpit” in Elvish. I would say it as often as I could. Tolkein’s books and the corresponding movies brought me into a world I’d never experienced before–one where I could get completely swept away in a book, and then see everything come to life.

It also introduced me to the righteous indignation that “I read the book first” folk can have when movie makers do something bizarre with their beloved books. Case in point, Legolas stair-surfing:

legolas surf

4. The Scarlet Pimpernel

anthony andrews

This movie, you guys. I know there are other versions made, even a black-and-white version that is deemed a classic, but this version (with a pre-knighthood Sir Ian McKellan and Jane Seymour) completely changed my life. I’m not even sure how or why my parents got their hands on a copy of this movie. I’m not sure how it came about that they wanted us to watch the movie (I can’t imagine my little brother and I asking to watch this–especially when none of our friends knew who Sir Percival Blankeny was). However, this was one of my favorite movies as a kid, and it got me hooked on stories of vigilante justice, disguises, and, of course, dashing, well-dress swashbuckling heroes who I now realize have a startling resemblance to Tom Hiddleston. We also had the book The Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Orczy (there are several books in the Pimpernel series, but I’ve only read the one), and I’ve read it more times than I can count. This? This movie and book right here? This is what started my love for British movies and British TV.

5. Wishbone

wishbone

I love literature, and I attribute that largely to my upbringing. My parents put a big emphasis on reading, and they were always quick to take me on trips to the library to stock up on books. While we really didn’t have cable growing up, we did get PBS. So I watched a TON of Wishbone as a kid. This was the show that introduced me to good literature. It showed me the awesome worlds I could discover in a book, and how exciting it could be to get totally lost in the world of fiction. This more than anything else was the “gateway fandom” (there was a Wishbone fandom, right?) that led me into the world of geekery and literary nerddom.

What are your gateway fandoms? Let me know in the comments, and be sure to check out the other #Fandom5 posts! I’ll be back next week with another 5 Fandom Friday!

34 thoughts on “5 Fandom Friday: Gateway Fandoms

  1. Toni (@LttleHouseCraft) says:

    You’re so lucky that your school went on LotR field trips! That’s so cool!

    My friend and I started learning Elvish too. She made a language course with homework and everything. We learned Anglo-Saxon runes from Tolkien’s language book and wrote notes to each other in them.

    I really need to check out Wishbone too. It looks so cute and wonderful!

    • Kendall Ashley says:

      That’s awesome! I wish I had the dedication to learn more Elvish. For a fake language, it’s beautiful!
      And you should totally watch Wishbone. It’s definitely a kid’s show, but it’s super cute.

  2. kaycreate says:

    HOLY CRAP WISHBONE. I haven’t thought of that show in years!! I watched a lot of PBS as a kid too, and Wishbone was one of my faves. My parents were also big into sci-fi, and I grew up watching Star Trek and the original Doctor Who (which I always found really scary haha!).

  3. rini says:

    OMG WISHBONE. It was definitely one of the best shows out there. Not only did you get introduced to classic literature AND get an adorable dog too. .. and I may or may not have used Wishbone to help with a book report…

  4. lizbethjoy says:

    Wishbone! Yes. I know so much from watching that show! Totally gives me a one up 😉 and yes! The first three were my Childhood!

  5. Megan Gotch (@thenerdygirlie) says:

    I totally forgot about Wishbone!!! CUTE!

    I JUST started listening to LOTR on audio book and love it. I’m such a slow reader that I thought it would be better this way and I would finish it quicker too! Otherwise, it would have probably been years! xx

    • Kendall Ashley says:

      I’m so glad you’re loving LOTR! Yeah, reading them can certainly be slow-going, so good call on getting the audio book. Tolkien just packs so much description and information in there, which is beautiful and awesome, but it can make it a slow read, regardless of how quick of a reader you are!

  6. Sarah says:

    I love love love The Scarlet Pimpernel! That version is simply amazing and I’m so glad you included it in your list because I feel like not many of us born after its release in 1982 probably know what it is. Jane Seymour, Ian McKellan and Anthony Andrews are all fantastic!

    I wish we had seen more from Anthony over the years in regard to working with film, but we’ll aways have this gem. Thanks for sharing!

    http://www.mediaformisfits.com

    • Kendall Ashley says:

      Of course! That version was BRILLIANT! And I totally agree, but I must say I was excited to see him in King’s Speech–even if it wasn’t for as long as I would have liked! 🙂

  7. Jessica says:

    That is so awesome that your school went to see the LOTR movie in theaters!! My sister is a bigger LOTR fan than myself so once I tell her I’m sure she will just hate you. lol just kidding, she won’t but she’ll definitely be SUPER jealous!

    Jessica
    the.pyreflies.org

  8. krystellemt says:

    Wishbone! I watched that show every day after school. And I wanted a Jack Russell terrier desperately because of it lol.

    My friends and I made multiple trips to the theater to watch LotR. It was my first time experiencing movie fandoms. People dressed up, even after opening night, it was crazy!

  9. Gaby says:

    Your parents sound awesome! If I ever have kids, I most definitely plan on introducing them to geeky things, especially Doctor Who!

    I’m jealous of the school field trips to see LOTR!! I’ve never heard of such a thing! We read the Hobbit in my 10th grade English class, and only because my teacher was a hardcore Tolkien fan, but no cool trips 😦
    He did have a life size cardboard cutout of Legolas, though.. That was nice 😉

    -Gaby

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