Thursday, April 15, 2010
OK, here's the situation: I'm at this special free screening of the first Doctor Who episode of the new season in NYC. Afterward, there's a Q&A with the stars of the show, Matt Smith & Karen Gillan. Everything is going fine until the last question of the evening, when this middle-aged guy comes up to the mike and asks Gillan if she's a "chubby chaser." He proceeds to invite her to the sushi bar next door if she is.
This cringe-worthy moment was greeted with universal groans and gasps by the rest of the audience. The people I was sitting with looked like they were hit in the face. Gillan just sort of shrunk in her seat and appeared *horrified*. I found out later that an almost identical situation happened to her the day before at another Doctor Who Q&A at the Apple Store.
Really, what's the point in making that remark to Gillan? What is hoped to be accomplished? It feels almost like an aggressive act. He had three (count em three) questions/comments at his turn on the microphone: one regarding how Matt Smith was a great doctor, one to Steven Moffat about writing, and the "chubby chaser" remark directed at Gillan. It's like that's all he got out of her performance: she was a piece of ass.
If there was anything encouraging about that situation, it was the across-the-board disapproval of this guy's actions by the rest of the fans. I might not have expected that 15 or even 10 years ago. It used to be normal that the pretty females in these TV shows and movies were understood to be "eye candy" at conventions and whatnot. But that didn't fly with this crowd at NYC, a group of about 350 fans that spanned gender, race, and age.
Now, was the progressiveness of the crowdevidence of the growing maturity/inclusiveness of fandom in general? Or is it a trait specific of Doctor Who fans?