Whether it be Marvel, Star Wars, or Game of Thrones, you can bet anything with a huge following these days has a toxic fandom; and while companies are trying their best to make sure their brands are accommodating everyone, one celebrity author is calling out these ‘anti-fans’ for adding more toxicity in what used to be safe spaces for all kinds of self-described geeks.
Writing on his own personal blog, Song of Ice and Fire author George R.R. Martin talks about how difficult of a year he’s had and how he anticipates 2024 not to be any better. He goes on to talk about ongoing wars, both publicized and ignored, but also has something to say about the recent fandom spaces. Martin writes:
“I take solace where I can. In chocolate thrones, if nowhere else. In books. In films and television shows… though even there, toxicity is growing. It used to be fun talking about our favorite books and films, and having spirited debates with fans who saw things different… but somehow in this age of social media, it is no longer enough to say ‘I did not like book X or film Y, and here’s why.’ Now social media is ruled by anti-fans who would rather talk about the stuff they hate than the stuff they love, and delight in dancing on the graves of anyone whose film has flopped.”
If anything, Martin definitely knows what he’s talking about. After all, the Game of Thrones fandom has been filled with the same ‘anti-fans’ ever since the series ended; on top of that, Martin has also been the victim of constant fan ridicule for taking his time when it comes to finishing the next book in the Song of Ice and Fire saga. Some are even blaming him for taking so long that the TV series had to write its own ending.
For now, the social media climate does seem to be cultivating a lot of hate—especially since they are very good with engagement. We don’t know how we could take on this toxicity moving forward; but some fans are trying their best to stay positive amidst the noise of it all.
Winds of Winter still has no release date, but watch our for the next season of House of the Dragon coming to Max this summer.