It's fascinating to read old meta on shows I watched a long time ago or in isolation from other viewers/fandom. Particularly Angel
because I've loved the show for a decade or so but I wasn't involved in fandom when it originally aired and for some reason I never bothered to look up meta after I was-- until now. Angel
exists in a special, happy place for me, so it was really jarring for me to come upon some really caustic, take-the-bitch-apart meta. Not in a "how DARE you talk about my baby that way" kinda way, but in a "what the heck are you talking about/I never saw that/where is this coming from" kinda way.
Lesson learned: Watching a show in isolation, without outside input, or in one go through a complete series can greatly alter how you view said show compared to if you watch it one week at a time and participate in its fandom.
For instance, I watched BSG all the way through in one go, so I never had time to sift through the epic mythology of the show or to form my own opinions about it while waiting years for the big reveals. But I just read some meta from people who did and, whoa (surprise), were they pissed at the series finale (which I thought was gorgeous). The same goes for Heroes
. I zipped right through S1 with no expectations and loved it without seeing the issues I read about later in meta. For instance, isolated as I was from fandom, I had no idea that people were expecting a huge, epic Peter vs. Sylar fight in the S1 finale. How disappointed they
were. And look at how bitter I
am now (though not about that)!
Final conclusion: Fandom creates a sense of entitlement, and giving fans time to stew in their own creative juices and inputs to the story/mythology is just asking for trouble. Don't give the fans time to think! Wait, that isn't news? Oh, never mind.
During all this meta surfing, I came to another startling conclusion: ( I don't think I actually like Spike. GASP. )