When Transformative Fandom Passes The Buck On Representation In Fandom

“Well if there were more well-written characters of color, I’d focus on them,” is a recurring excuse for the way content is unfairly weighted towards white characters in Western media fandoms.

I have heard it used for over a decade and it’s an excuse used to successfully argue that the thing stopping them from caring about Black/brown people in their shows is… quality and quantity.

Back when we were hearing the first rumblings of rumors for Pacific Rim Uprising’s John Boyega connection, my friend Holly over at DiverseHighFantasy posted on Tumblr that:

The PacRim fandom is already chanting for no romance in 2, but wait till they see whiteguy Jaeger Tech #3 and whiteguy cafeteria server in a 2 second shot together.

The post on Tumblr currently has over fourteen thousand notes and considering how from the jump people were insulting Holly, accusing her of “a homophobic microaggression”, saying “let women like things”… .it probably hasn’t gotten much better. From John Boyega’s interviews and how he talked about why he wanted to be a producer – this film was his production company’s first outing – we knew that the film was going to probably have a diverse cast of characters.

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[Book Review] Rafe (Loose Ends #1) by Rebekah Weatherspoon

Rafe cover copy

After her live-in nanny bounces without warning, leaving her twin six-year-old daughters alone for several hours, Dr. Sloan Copeland finds herself in desperate need of a new nanny as she works long hours and the girls are set to start school very soon.

Enter Rafe.

A big, bearded, babe of a man, Rafe has been working as a nanny for a while and, after his most recent family heads to Australia, he’s starting to consider whether or not he wants to keep working in childcare. He loves his job and the kids he takes care of (seriously swoonworthy, y’all), but he’s contemplating changing careers… right until he sees Sloan and her cute as heck little girls.Read More »

[Stitch Likes Stuff] Shipping, Fandom Racism, and Reylo

I came across this video thanks to one of my old mutuals on tumblr and I think it’s a pretty great overview of the way that shipping trends and fandom racism are often one in the same.

The video’s narrator, Moth, starts with a “Shipping 101” introduction for the uninitiated and then jumps right in. They focus on a couple of specific areas that I feel are important to take into consideration in fandom/as a fan:

  • The popularity of “unhealthy” non-canon ships with two white characters over “healthy” canon ships with one character of color being shipped with a white character (Moth uses “unhealthy” to refer to ships involving minors in sexual/romantic relationships with adults, incest, one character being a noted abuser in canon, that sort of thing.)
  • The excuses fans in fandom give for why they’re not racist for being almost solely invested in ships between white characters — especially white villains and the white characters fighting against them.
  • And the Star Wars’ fandom’s Rey/Kylo shippers and several of the racist excuses that some of the fans of the ship use to explain why they can’t find Finn a “worthy” partner for Rey (but insist on shipping her with someone who she calls a monster and can’t stand).

Obviously, this sort of video hits a lot of my buttons because these are things I talk about on my website. I think it’s a really insightful video that clearly lays out what fandom does, what characters are impacted the most, and why it’s a set of trends that is racist. Much of the video focuses primarily on the Star Wars fandom, but as I think that’s one of the most racist fandoms active right now… Obviously, I think that’s a great thing to zero in on.

So please, go to Moth’s video and let them know how much you appreciate their work and upvote the video (because folks that talk about race and racism in media or fandom definitely get the short end of the stick and tons of abuse from assholes who don’t seem to get that they’re just… proving that fandom is racist).

Letters to the Author – Afton Locke

Note that this Letter to the Author contains graphic descriptions of racism and racist violence (sexual and otherwise) as it relates to the reality of white supremacy in history and historical romances.


Dear Afton Locke,

I could write you about a bunch of things in your Oyster Harbor series. I could talk about your constant use of food terms to describe Black characters (“butterscotch” and “light mocha” stand out). I could complain about how your heroine in Cali’s Hurricane is a vodou practitioner and how it’s so mishandled. I could even point out that the plot in and of itself is supremely flawed and in no way as accurate as you think.

But you know what, everything pales in the face of the one main question that I’ve had for you since the moment I read anything of yours: What on Earth possessed you to write a series of historical interracial romance novels where (at least) two of your “heroes” belong to their local branch of the Klan?Read More »