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021 - Tears of a Clown

021 - Tears of a Clown

3/13/13

Alternate song title reference: Skipper Derp.

The notes for this comic have been revised about fifteen times now, two of which were complete rewrites from the ground up. It was an attempt to help clarify my relationship with fandom, but then this 12-car pileup happened over at Equestria Daily, and I don’t think the world needs me to plow my SUV at full speed into it.

This was the first time I really peaked behind the curtain at pony fandom. I typically don’t participate in Big Internets (Facebook, Reddit, forums, comments, etc...), but this was a case where curiosity got the better of me. I always pictured myself as one on the more complainy end of the spectrum, but when I read through these pages, I dare say I’m practically moderate! It put one simple fact into perspective that I feel stupid for not understanding more clearly: Friendship is Magic fandom is the internet, and if there’s one thing I have a love-hate relationship with, it’s the internet.

If you skip to page 7 or so of the comments, user “achenara” takes a pretty darn good role call of the issues, but in the end, most amount to “People need to chill and stop being jerks.” It’s a valid complaint, though it’s one you can apply to any internet fandom, or to the internet as a whole, or just the world in general. If you have a good solution, I’d love to hear it, but my coping mechanism has always been to stick with friends and satire things I find to be silly.

Speaking of which, you can probably fit this comic in the magical Horse Power box of “GX pokes fun at fan obsessions.” I already talked a bit about Derpy a few months ago, but hey, when the gray muse strikes, it strikes.

I reject most “fanon” interpretations of characters 30% because I have strong reverence for the show, 30% because I like being all unexpected and contrarian, 30% because I get tired of internetisms long before the internet does, and 11% because I’m a mild troll. It’s not that fan interpretations can’t be funny, but over time they go from a joke to an accepted truth. That’s not innately good or bad, much in the same way Coca Cola has defined a popular Christmas icon for decades, but when fans en masse say that Lyra is an inverted metaphor of the fandom, or that the pony with an hourglass mark is a horse version of the Doctor, or that Pon-3 and Octavia have an intricate bond/rivalry/romantic relationship, the trend makes me chuckle more than the fanism itself.

Thanks again to everyone who sent me music! I took a few of the suggestions, but as I mentioned, more than anything, I wanted to get a rough idea as to what was out there and hopefully get motivated to start searching on my own. And by searching, I mean systematically skimming through every music post on Equestria Daily. Thus far, I’ve only made it up to August 2011. It took me a few months until I felt like I hit pay dirt, but fiscal minerals have been struck, and struck hard.

So for what will likely be a reoccurring segment, I present...

Things I’ve Learned From EQD’s Music Archives, Jan-Aug 2011 Edition:

1. The genre most associated with a turn-of-the-century fantasy cartoon about anthropomorphic horses in a rural village is techno and its variations.

2. Luna is sad. All the time.

3. Eurobeat exists outside of DDR, and it sounds like every Sega Saturn game ever.

4. I can't listen to any YTPMVs without Dr. Robotnik.

5. It's completely unfair to use the Ducktales NES moon level theme. You might as well offer me a free backrub and rainbow Twizzlers with the song.

6. At some point, I’m sure I’ll enjoy something by I Bring Da LULZ, but I’m not there yet.

7. Dear GOD, Beatles parodies and ponies go together like a clever analogy and something that goes really well with a clever analogy.

8. I DEMAND MORE EUROBEAT. PLUG MY BRAIN INTO THE MATRIX SO THAT I MAY EXPERIENCE MORE THINGS THAT SOUND LIKE CHIPTUNES BUT CLEARLY AREN’T.

9. The shortest route from tenuous financial stability to impulse-induced poverty moseys through Bandcamp Junction.

10. I still can’t bring myself to listen to anything that uses the prefix “bro” or tells me to “join the herd.”

The deeper down I trek, the farther the bottom seems to be.
GX

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