One of the things that I dislike about modern society is how ingrained geek culture has become into the mainstream. On one hand I enjoy the acceptance of not being judged harshly for being a gamer, a comic book nerd, or a World of Warcraft player. On the other hand I feel like my hobbies and interests have been tainted by the mainstream which has led to an influx of political correctness, misinformation, and overwhelming trendiness.
You’re not a nerd just because you went and saw the Marvel films, and you weren’t there in the beginning. It’s as bad as when white guys try to run around repping “Black Lives Matter.”
What the fuck do you know about the shit? Watching Ant-Man one time doesn’t make you an expert on the entire Marvel Comics Universe but these days there are so many people that people walk around acting like it does. One comic book franchise that has been cannibalized (irony) by the mainstream is The Walking Dead, for example. The mainstream has pretty much commandeered geek culture and it’s somewhat annoying if you’re someone who has been repping it since before “geek” was “cool.”
I think above and beyond the WORST of these offenses are the trendy people who claim to be hardcore fans of Batman. For whatever reason, the Dark Knight ranks #1 among the superheroes which trendwhores absolutely love (and coincidentally like to ruin). I was lounging around in the chat room of The Geek Soapbox a few weeks ago when women’s wrestler Leva Bates (formerly a guest on our podcast) mentioned and agreed with me that Batman got trended up. And she noted it’s hard for us to say anything about it because we sound like stuck up hipsters, but damn it, I have to say something about it because it’s driving me nuts. So thank you, Leva, not just for your wonderful blue pants, but compelling me to vent about a subject that's been driving me crazy the past few years.
Frankly I want to still like Batman, but when a girl says she’s into my interests and hobbies, and I ask her who her favorite superhero is, and she replies BATMAN, I go flaccid. It’s like her telling you she identifies as a feminist. It’s like her telling you that her vagina grows a fungal mushroom head like Princess Toadstool’s Dad in the shitty Mario movie.
It makes me absolutely cringe when a girl responds with BATMAN because 99.9% of the time she’s full of shit. Let’s face it. Most girls do not actually like Batman. They like the way the Batman logo looks on their clothing, and shamelessly posting photos of the logo on their tits or on the back of their panties on Instagram increases the amount of sad lonely nerds who are hitting LIKE on their otherwise generic, cliché “sexy” photos.
The girl I’m talking to now remarked Spider-Man when I asked about her favorite superhero and THAT I can work with. Then her and I got into a nice conversation where I flat out said "oh thank God you didn't say Batman." You know why? NOBODY ever says Spider-Man because Spider-Man is the OPPOSITE of trendy. In fact it’s COOL to HATE Spider-Man and he’s up there with Cyclops for “superhero nobody actually likes anymore.”
Anyway back to the bat, if a woman tells me she’s a Batman fan I feel like you have to quiz her. Ask her who actually WROTE “The Killing Joke” comics, or who Batman is in the “Flashpoint” crossover. Ask her to name some villains and if she can’t name someone that WASN’T in the movies, she’s probably full of shit. I’m not saying the movies are bad representations or anything, I’m just saying that you’re not some massive #1 Batman fan if you’ve never touched anything about the series before the movie Batman Begins, which many of these bandwagoners had not. Still bandwagoners lead to bandwagon-y annoying shit, for example the television show Gotham.
I don’t know why I watch Gotham. In theory it sounded cool – a Commissioner Gordon prequel that saw him fight crime in a pre-Batman Gotham City. A cool cop show… then it all went downhill from there as the show becomes way too much about child Bruce Wayne and child Catwoman for the sake of trend. I’m not even going to get started on Jada Pinkett-Smith’s brutal OVER-acting in the series which is cringe-worthy every time she speaks on the show. And you know what? For some ungodly reason CHICKS love this show. And every comic-book loving dude I know considers it the cancer of DC television shows, when it’s up against better, less ridiculous concepts such as Arrow and the Flash.
Arrow and the Flash take liberties but they’re pretty good at trying to be solid and give us some stuff for the comic book audience not the mainstream “hur hur this is cool” audience. Because of that The Flash especially comes off as a genuine (and better) show. In fact I can probably binge-watch both shows more than once and STILL not be sick of them (even though Arrow Season 3 sort of tanked the second half but that's another story for another day).
I think the worst part is the Batman trendiness is only going to get worse. Once Suicide Squad hits the big screen, we’re going to have so many girls wanting to be Harley Quinn it will be ridiculous – Harley is the part of the Batman-is-Trendy culture that hurts. What was once a great original character introduced initially for the Batman Animated Series is going to be everyone’s trendy Halloween costume, and of the people wearing them maybe 1 in 1000 actually have ever read a comic book in their life. Thanks for ruining it for the people that actually genuinely like this stuff.
I think Harley especially represents for these trendy girls how unstable and insane they are and prone to violent, destructive relationships. Trendy girls who don’t read comics and rep Harley Quinn have probably been fucked more times than watching Bree Olson’s entire porn career 5 times over. They just like her because she’s psychotic which is reflective of most of their actual personalities. Also, the reason they like Batman is because he has a lot of money, so in short these bitches can’t be trusted.
My bottom line and my point is that unfortunately mainstream acceptance of nerds has sort of created a nerd-poser, and Batman, and many of the characters in his series are the go-to for poser-nerds to try to act like they’ve been into superheroes their entire lives when chances are 10-15 years ago they were the same assholes who picked on people who read comic books.