The Geek Wars have been raging on for the past few years…It seems as soon as being a geek became the new black, and we were the cool kids for a change, we started in on each other: Fake Geeks, Girl Geeks vs. “Real” Geeks, the Brony controversy, Cosplay Slut-Shaming, “Real” Cosplayers vs. Off-the-Rack Cosplay Dilettantes. It’s been almost endless. No, it has been endless.
Can’t we all just fucking get along already? (Apparently not.)
Through it all I’ve been largely silent on the blog about it because, well, I’m a geek, well versed in several different dialects of geek lore and technology, and could basically give a rat’s hind quarters about what others think about it, or me, having developed a thick skin growing up a geek in far less geek-friendly times…But also realizing that we geeks have been in-fighting with each other since the first internecine argument about whether or not Superman could kick Mighty Mouse’s ass happened in a school yard somewhere in the mists of time. Passion, and passionate displays of difference of opinion, are both part of the whole geek experience anyway, but there is still work to be done out there people. There are those out there who are still openly, and ignorantly, hating on our kind because…wait for it…We are different.
<sigh>Insert weeping for the sad state of Humanity here.</sigh>
So we all know the ignorant/intolerant, and the bullies, are out there. That’s not news, but the last place one would expect to find geek shaming going on would be in the middle of the BBC’s Doctor Who 50th Anniversary.
A pre-taped episode of ‘The Graham Norton Show’ was aired after “The Day of the Doctor”, featuring David Tennant and Matt Smith, among a celebrity panel that included Emma Thompson, Robbie Williams, and some fellow named Jimmy Carr, who is a stand-up comedian known for being dark, edgy, and, apparently, a bit of a douchebag.
Let’s go to the video clip…
After talking to the two Doctors for a bit, Norton started taking questions from some Doctor Who fans, including a pair from the U.S., who had traveled to London for the celebration…In the big red ejector chair that Norton uses to mock his guests (all in good fun of course, and never at his expense…)
At about 3:03 in the segment, this lovely lady appears cosplaying as a Dalek.
I recognized her immediately, as we met at San Diego Comic-Con where I snapped this shot of her (I believe award-winning) Dalek cosplay. I thought it was bloody brilliant, as the Doctor might say.
Well, Norton, apparently not-so-much in the impressed department, ejected her from the chair before she had a chance to ask a question. By this time the geek-shaming had already started between Norton, Williams, and Carr. (Tennant, Smith, and Thompson not included, they know who their fans are…)
A bit later (about 3:24) a fellow named Stefan took the chair in a terrific 10th Doctor cosplay of brown pinstripe suit, blue button-down, and geometric print tie that were all spot on…So much so, in fact, that David Tennant was very impressed, and praised the guy’s work at being able to pull the cosplay together (David would know, as it seems the only version of his 10th Doctor costume they could find for ‘The Day of the Doctor’ was the one he kept for himself, and supplied for the shoot…BYOC?)
Stefan had come on stage to get Tennant’s autograph for a full-sleeve tattoo that he has been working on with autographs of actors who have played the Doctor…He already had Matt Smith and Sylvester McCoy’s signatures inked in (and apparently he got Matt’s one night at SDCC when the actor was plastered. (Guess the quote: “Hey, I was drunk, it was Comic-Con”. “We’ve all been there…”)
The two Doctors were giving Stefan some props, when Jimmy Carr chimes in with “What do you think it’s gonna’ be like to touch a girl?”
Stefan just politely replied, “I’m married to the Dalek.”
The audience started cheering while Carr lamely retorted, “Of course you are…Of course you are…”
Like I said…what a D-bag.
The best thing…Stefan’s lack of a reaction. After all, he had just scored an appearance on an Internationally-televised tv show, scored another Doctor’s autograph, got respect from the 2 Doctors for his work, and could head back to his hotel with his beautiful wife (the ultimate score), all while putting a hater in his place, and making Mr. Carr look like a complete ignoramus by hoisting him on his own petard. All while staying classy.
Well played, Stefan. Very well played, sir!
Why going to such length on this? The incident just shows that there are always ignorant people out there willing to shame/bully/mock people that are different from them. This time it was someone outside of the geek community, recalling the school-yard bullies, or the ‘popular’ kids that many of us dealt with in our youth. But there is just as much infighting and bullying going inside the geek community these days as there is from the ‘traditional’ sources, and it’s gotta’ stop. In the end, all we have is each other, so we need to learn to love the differences, and, like the man said, “Be excellent to each other…” (name the quote.)