First up today….Stegosaurus Wilde!!!!!
Fandoms are funny. We read a book, or we watch a TV show or movie, or we play a video game, and all of a sudden we become completely and utterly obsessed. How does that even happen? I mean, at first it’s, “No, I haven’t heard of it. That sounds really interesting.” But before long we’re spewing our verbal vomit of total obsession on anyone who will listen. Or sometimes on people who won’t. People who are running away with their hands over their ears, pleading, “Please, no more! My ears are bleeding!”
But I digress…
I’m not going to explain the phenomenon of fandoms. I don’t think I could. I am, however, going to add to its general ridiculousness. Without further ado, I present a countdown of my top five fandoms. In verse.
5. Top Gear
A British car show on TV
On the one and only BBC
The hosts are silly, spirited, brash
One even got into a huge car crash.
Okay, that’s enough of that nonsense. In the first segment of each episode, Top Gear’s three hosts review supercars like Lamborghinis, Ferraris and the like. Occasionally they’ll review more normal cars when the producers complain. But after that, the real magic begins. The producers set them to a completely ridiculous challenge. For example, convert a road vehicle to a boat and cross the English Channel. Or design your own RV and get it from point A to point B. The challenges are always hilarious, and usually there is at least one epic failure. If you don’t find this show funny, then you’re not trying hard enough.
4. Doctor Who
Another BBC triumph. Although I am now a couple of seasons behind in watching (What? I have four kids.), I love Doctor Who. My favorite is still the tenth. No one can beat David Tennant, especially paired with the inimitable Catherine Tate as Donna Noble. (Even though SuddenButInevitable prefers Matt Smith). My favorite episode is The Unicorn and the Wasp. How many Agatha Christie story titles can you hear in the show’s dialogue? This show is at times funny, brilliant, creepy, heartbreaking, hopeful, and occasionally completely unbelievable. And that’s exactly what I love about it.
3. My Little Pony
I didn’t intend to become a My Little Pony fan. It just sort of… happened. I could blame the kids, but then, how much control over the TV can a two-year-old really have? Wait. Don’t answer that.
This show is just full of warm fuzzy moments, but it somehow avoids being completely sappy. Even though it’s a kids’ show, the “Mane 6,” otherwise known as the six main characters, are great examples of how six very different people can not only become friends, but remain friends through hardship and danger. Plus, it’s just plain funny. I love that I can watch this with my kids, as well, without worrying about the content.
2. Calvin and Hobbes
Oh, how I longed to be Calvin when I was a kid! He was so imaginative, so adventurous, and so downright outrageous that I couldn’t help but to fall in love with him and his erstwhile companion, Hobbes. Plus, how about that vocabulary! I know, I know, I was a nerdy kid. In fact, I still am a nerdy kid, and I’m 33. I don’t have anything else to say on Calvin and Hobbes except this: go now and read them all.
1. Harry Potter
I know I’m not alone in this obsession. I first read Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone during my senior year of high school when my brother brought a copy back from a school sponsored trip to London. I immediately fell in love with the Boy Who Lived, and imagine how thrilled I was to discover that two more books were out, and another was due to release that summer! Luckily that same brother had a summer job at Waldenbooks that year. I think I’ll keep him around.
For me the Harry Potter stories hold more than magic. They hold friendship, growth, and the struggle of good against evil in their pages. Not only that, but they hold the human struggle of self-discovery, and the choice of where to be along that continuum of good and evil. One of the hallmarks of the Harry Potter stories is that, no matter what the prophecy says, no matter what corner you feel you’ve been painted into, at the end of the day your choices are what matter. You can choose your own path, and that makes all the difference in the world.
“It is our choices, Harry, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.”