Parts of Your Fanbase Are Toxic, Zack Snyder, and You Need to Own That

There is no such thing as a perfect fanbase. When you have a large group of people together, there are going to be some bad apples in the bunch. That is just the way things are, no matter what fandom or friend group or anything; you get enough people together, and someone is going to be an asshole. Admitting that there are bad people in a group doesn't mean condemning the entire group. However, when members of a group are being toxic or bad, the rest of the group needs to work to disavow the bad members and condemn their behavior. If you have 50 fans and one of them is sending death threats to an actor, but the other 49 don't do anything about it, then you have 50 complicit and bad fans. The fandom behind Zack Snyder and Justice League is no different. There are absolutely some bad apples in that bunch of fans, including one that decided to call me a "Snyder hating cunt." They were not hiding their bad behavior, and if no one around them called them out for it, then you are complicit, and you need to learn to live with that. Snyder recently did an interview with CinemaBlend, saying that his fandom cannot possibly be toxic because they have raised money for charity.

And so, in what world do you have any credibility anywhere, to any- one? I would love the opportunity to just say to the world, and to fandom in general, who these fakers are and what should be done to them, or with them. It's just a bunch of BS. In regards to that toxic fandom, or it's 'a win for toxic fandom,' again, in what world does this 'toxic fandom' raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for suicide prevention? How is that toxic fandom? They've probably achieved more than any other fan base, [and done more] good than any other group. So I don't understand.

Zack Snyder's Justice League Poster. Credit: HBO Max/Warner Bros.
Zack Snyder's Justice League Poster. Credit: HBO Max/Warner Bros.

Here's the thing, Zack; your fandom has done a lot of good, and there is no denying that, but there is also a group that has spent the last several years sending death threats to anyone who explained that the version of the Snyder Cut they were demanding did not exist. Multiple people online are afraid to type your name on social media because your fans slide into their mentions and make their lives hell. Acknowledging that some people took it too far does not negate the good these people have done; it's holding the bad ones accountable and not tarnishing the good work that everyone else has done. Because people will remember the death threats more than they will remember the charity and the support they sent you because that's the sort of thing that sticks in people's minds. By not disavowing the people who took it too far, you and everyone else are complicit in the actions of the bad ones too. You, Zack, and the good ones in your fandom need to police the bad people, and I have never once seen you defend someone who is getting death threats from your people.

Snyder went on to pretty much disavow anyone who said that they had a bad experience with his fandom and essentially said that they are making it all up, which is certainly a take.

I just think that's sour grapes. There's really no other way to say it. We know the people who were the architects of that narrative, and it's pretty obvious what their agenda is. Those are people that I've been held back from confronting, by wiser people in the room. Because I'd love to get at some of these characters. Some direct conversation would be nice. Just to say, one, you don't know shit about what you're talking about. And we can break down everything they've ever [said]. I can make a list. There's a few of these guys where I could just get a list of everything they've ever said, that they thought was right, and [I could tell them] every single thing they've said is wrong.

Snyder had to leave Justice League under the worst possible circumstances, and going back to it was always going to be an extremely emotional thing. In fact, I even wrote in multiple articles that I was essentially worried that working on the movie again could trigger some bad memories from the worst moment in his life the same way I'm concerned about Ben Affleck going back to being Batman could be a trigger for his alcoholism. I can understand that Snyder is fiercely protective of this movie and of this fanbase, but you cannot just say that people didn't experience this abuse when they did. And a whole bunch of those people didn't do anything about it, which makes them complicit, and now you are complicit by not admitting that some people took it too far.

The fanbase around Zack Snyder and Justice League has done some real good in this world, and they rallied behind a filmmaker during one of the worst times in his life in a way I've never seen before. That is absolutely commendable and worthy of praise. However, a group of people took it too far, and you cannot just hand wave that away no matter how much you might want to. You have to own the good and the bad, and nothing is perfect. No fandom is perfect and plenty of them need to do better at weeding out the bad eggs but you don't get to point at the good and act like the bad didn't happen. Star Wars fans have raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for charity over the years too; that doesn't mean the people who drove Daisy Ridley or Kelly Marie Tran off of social media aren't out there and need to be purged. All fandoms need to do better at pushing back at the people who are ruining it for everyone else.

Zack Snyder's Justice League will stream to HBO Max on March 18th.

 

About Kaitlyn Booth

Kaitlyn is the Editor-in-Chief at Bleeding Cool. She loves movies, television, and comics. She's a member of the UFCA and the GALECA. Feminist. Writer. Nerd. Follow her on twitter @katiesmovies and @safaiagem on instagram. She's also a co-host at The Nerd Dome Podcast. Listen to it at http://www.nerddomepodcast.com

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