End of a Fandom

Update 6/19/18:

This particular event bothered me, so I continued to check into it through even today. I do have to rescind a few statements, one specifically the statement at the end, so you’ll see them now, in strikeout.

Fact is, I do care. I don’t want to see a person destroyed lest they are truly a monster. Chris, while maybe a little fake, maybe a little egotistical (as I had been leaning towards lately irrespective of the recent events), isn’t a Harvey Weinstein. I let my own queasiness in him of late further taint the news of his potential misgivings. I became too quick to label him in league with being a monster rather than reserving my opinion and seeing what I think this really is.

Thing is, I believe both parties. I believe that Chris feels that he never sexually assaulted her; I believe that Chloe believes that he did sexually assault her. Seeing revealed text messages though, I am leaning towards labelling this a relationship that went awry and now spilled over into the public sphere because we took Chloe’s essay on trying to cope and heal with a relationship that damaged her to run amok on a man who we feel now owes something for that.

But should we even be policing this? I mean, I’ve had plenty of terrible relationships. Haven’t we all?

It has a lot to do with timing, coming off this whole #metoo movement. We are more sensitive due to the real terrible people that had been let to misbehave for so long that a bad relationship between two people, in other words, two people who just weren’t right for each other, becomes reason to punish one party or the other.

I have to say, I am sorry to Chris for the rush to judgement. And while I might return to his podcast at some point, I will continue to take a break. At least to let this whole thing blow over.

 

Original:

My podcast listening backlog just cleared itself.

Today, we found out that Chris Hardwick is likely yet another celebrity involved in the growing list of repugnant men revealed to the world. And I thought I admired him.

I don’t want to excuse behavior like that. Abuse, control, intimidate, and assault? Those are just inexcusable.

Having been listening to the Nerdist Podcast (now the ID10T Podcast) since it was in the low double-digits, I had also followed the relationship between Chris Hardwick and Chloe Dykstra. It was my following of him that led me to follow her. And I saw a wonderful individual who I continued to follow, even after their breakup four years ago.

Having listened for so long, the details matched up with stories I remember listening to. All I can say is “WOW.”

To me, I’ve been teetering on Chris lately. Even before this news hit. Something in the podcasts, in how he talks and interviews people just seemed off to me. The laugh seemed forced. I had ignored it for so long, but now after listening to people like Joe Rogan, Sam Harris, and others, I am noticing a weird wall that is up with Hardwick that I don’t get from the others.

As soon as I read the news, it fit.

And when I read her essay, the coffin was nailed shut. (It is linked here.)

I had to walk away from my fandom of Chris Hardwick.

Maybe he is a better person now than he was four years ago when Chloe split from him. Maybe he found in Lydia Hearst a person that made him better. Following him for so long before and now hearing this, I just cannot accept being a fan of his any longer.

I only hope now that Chloe finds the closure and healing that she is after.

Whatever happens to Chris… too bad.

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