At Salt Lake Comic Con 2017 over the weekend, panelists Kaitlyn Booth, Aaron Burton, Michaelbrent Collings, Brian Higgins, and Candace Tarkeshian discussed how mental health and illness is depicted in the media, and how it's handled within fandom.
Mental health and mental illness has been used to justify plot twists, villain motivation and for comedic effect in genre work since its inception. How has this impacted those directly affected by mental illness and how has the industry tried to correct the primarily negative portrayal? Join us while we discuss how fans can draw strength from characters and stories that empower those struggling with depression, anxiety, trauma and many other mental health concerns.
To say that the media has a problem with the portrayal of mental health would be an understatement. If the mentally ill aren't presented as the villains, they're presented as crazy or dangerous in a number of films, TV shows, and more.
In this panel, we talk about how we could help change that presentation and what to do when people start self diagnosing various characters in the media. This panel is an important one that Salt Lake Comic Con has usually allowed us to do, and it was one of the panels that kicked off the 2017 convention.