Being Thankful

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So once again, there is angst and drama in the Outlander Clandom. The culprit this time is a deleted scene from S2 revolving around the death of Faith. Once again, my biggest frustration is that SOME of the ‘fans’ rather than being thankful went into full bitch mode.

I am working to accept the fact that there is a small contingency of people out there that are going to be nasty. Nothing I or anyone else can say or do is going to get them to realize that there is indeed a difference between critiquing something and criticizing it. These people are going to be loud, rude and nasty no matter what just because they feel entitled to. I can’t imagine how some of the fans who follow thousands of people and see this nastiness on a regular basis deal with that much negativity in their life. I have cut my SM time to bare minimum with only a specific list I’m following on Twitter until after the elections because I was upset and angry all the time.

Beth Wesson did an absolutely fabulous blog about all this with links to two really interesting articles about fandoms and some of the issues that are coming out with social media playing such a role in the arena now. Please click here to read FANS & CREATORS…DRAWING A LINE OF DECENCY IN THE SAND.

 

Another recent blog that I really liked can be found here: A RESPECTFUL NOTE TO YOU, RON, ABOUT JAMIE. The author let her readers know her frustration without being at all disrespectful, whiny or nasty. It was a wonderful read.

Instead of duplicating the efforts of other writers better than myself, I thought with Thanksgiving coming up (Canada having already had theirs) I’d list off some stuff I’m thankful for rather than grousing (too much) about stuff that is frustrating me. So here goes.

I’m thankful that the last job I had allowed me to spend my days around books. Being in a second hand store that processed and resold donations, I was exposed to a huge variety of tomes I might not have looked at otherwise. I had to have a good enough feel for the book to know where to shelve it, and so I found many authors I fell in love with while ‘working’. This is how I found Diana Gabaldon and Outlander.

I am thankful that a ‘movie’ was never made of Outlander. Huge parts of the book had to be left out with 16 hours to work with – a 2-3 hour movie wouldn’t have come close to doing it justice.

I’m thankful that Ronald D. Moore saw something gripping in the pages of these books and was willing to put in the effort to get it made right and on a channel that would allow the grittiness, sex and violence that is part of the story be told properly without having to water it down for viewers.

I’m supremely thankful that Ron and his team work with Diana to keep (usually) the story on track. I’ve seen many stories where the original author is cut out of the process completely.

I am thankful for a solid group of extremely talented actors who get the essence of these extremely layered and complex characters. Actors who work very hard to bring that to the screen. People who give up a lot of privacy to make, promote and give this story to the fans. While they get paid for their time, it has to get old to so constantly be in the spotlight with no life to call your own. I appreciate their willingness to interact with the fans and hope they won’t feel compelled to cease that because of a small minority that insist on being nasty.

  • I am thankful to ALL the people behind the scenes that work so hard to make Outlander such a great show.
  • Ron, the producers, writers and casting crew that give the show its frame and characters.
  • Jon and the production team that give the production its base and background.
  • Terry and her whole team that dress it up.
  • The dedicated drivers who get everyone where they need to be when they need to be there.
  • The directors who put those elements together for a compelling hour of drama.
  • Specialists like Àdhamh and Claire who make sure the unusual/special things are ‘right’.
  • All the support people that work hard to make it all happen.
  • Basically for every warm body that makes this show happen as I’m sure I missed some above.

I am thankful for all those people above that take the time and energy to interact with the show’s fans on social media and (so far) haven’t shut them all down due to the inability of a few to express themselves in a grown-up, dignified manner.

I am thankful that this team shoots way more footage than they will use in the hour so they have options to make each episode the best it can be. This also means that we get to see extra footage when the DVD’s come out that make it that much richer. These are the extra bits that keep us going through Droughtlander and give us special moments.

Mostly, I am thankful that the responsibility for deciding what goes into each episode to be aired is not my responsibility. I may not love every minute of every episode – but it is a series that has done a damn fine job of portraying good drama. Not just a love story – though that is a huge part of it; not just a history – though that is its base. An excellent story brought out in a difficult medium with gobs of competition and doing well enough that it is getting to be ‘known’.

For the scene that many seem upset about – I’m thankful it was filmed at all and we got to see it. We as fans do NOT have a clue what all goes into these decisions. Yes it was a wonderful, well-acted scene that I enjoyed very much – but I didn’t miss it at the time the show aired. Expressing disappointment that it wasn’t included in the actual episode isn’t and never will be the problem I have with the fandom; the problem is a few, very vocal ‘entitled fans’ crucifying on social media the people that work so hard to bring us this show. There are days I honestly shake my head in wonder that Ron and the team don’t throw up their hands in disgust at being attacked yet again and say “fine – since we can’t make everyone happy we just won’t do the show at all.”

I’m very, very thankful that the cast, crew and all the wonderful folks who bring us Outlander are all sane, sensible people who are too professional to let immaturity from others dictate their actions.

 

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Heeeeeeeeer’s Bree!

It’s one of those days that I wonder if it’s worth the effort to be part of a ‘fandom’. So many good things can be going on which can be so quickly overshadowed by negativity. I once heard that it actually takes 10 positive comments to balance out 1 negative comment. Now, this was talking about individuals and self-esteem, but I imagine the formula holds pretty true. We as human beings tend to be very quick to latch onto the negative rather than embracing the positive.

Today, we were (finally) introduced to the very lovely young lady that will be playing Brianna Randall/Fraser. Almost immediately came the:

She has brown eyes! That’s impossible if both parents have blue! How could they DO this?! WAAAAA (it’s not actually but won’t get into that)

She is too short!  WAAAAAA

She’s a Brit so her accent will be all wrong!!! WAAAAA

She looks nothing like I pictured Brianna! I’m SO disappointed!!! WAAAAAA

 

You all get the picture.

Italian mother.png(BTW – for me it would be a German mamma – but the idea is the same and thank you to @CandidKathryn for this meme!)

A few points here. All the negative nellies get to have their say – it’s their RIGHT by god to disagree whenever and however they please. Ok….that means I get to have my say too.

First, The Outlander books are some of the very best I have EVER read! They catch you up and wrap you into the story and you can see it all in your head. The thing I really REALLY wish people would keep in mind is – we all see it differently. How I picture Jamie is how I picture Jamie (or Claire or Bree or pick a character). MY interpretation of the words DG has put together to create the Outlander universe. It will be different from anyone else’s vision because no one else in the world has my exact background. To me, Diana created this world so SHE has final say. She can’t be ‘wrong’ because for Outlander she is ‘god’. (NOTE!!! I am not being disrespectful or blasphemous here…note the use of the lower case ‘g’. I am merely saying that as this world’s creator, she is the just that).

 

Second, while Jamie and the other characters are very real to each of us in different ways and for different reasons THEY ARE FICTIONAL CHARACTERS. They don’t exist in the real world….hence….there is no one that is going to look exactly like them physically. This is just something everyone needs to except as fact. Might there have been some actors closer in physical likeness to the different characters – perhaps. Could the ‘team’ have found anyone better to embody these characters? Not bloody likely.

I remember the hub-bub when Sam was first cast. People literally flipping out because Sam looked NOTHING like their beloved Jaimie! There is no possible way this guy could pull it off and the whole thing was ruined without a second of film having been shot. Yet, look now and no one can imagine anyone else doing such a fantastic job. Still see gripes about hair color –   *sigh*

 

Third, so far the casting of Outlander has been SPOT ON. The actors may not look exactly as the characters were described in the book (please refer to the second point above) but they have embodied the essence of the characters and totally brought them to life! Since the ‘Team’ has done such a fabulous job so far getting the right actor for the right part, I’m going to trust them on this one too! Sophie Skelton is a lovely lass who has some solid credentials behind her. For a short time acting she has a lot of credits behind her already. She also has some smarts it seems like and is willing to jump into the Twitter fray as it were. Sam tweeted that she “SMASHED IT”…… that says to me that she fits right in and will do a stellar job as Brianna. Also, as a relative ‘unknown’ she doesn’t bring any baggage from previous work – or not much. The other cast members seem pretty excited about this choice – so I hope everyone settles back and doesn’t ruin it for themselves with their own expectations.

 

None of the actors are going to exactly match the physical characteristics of the characters because the characters are creations of an (extremely talented) author. This will only be a problem if you LET it be.

Not every scene/nuance/line that is critical to you from the book is going to be in the series. It just is not possible. You are not going to agree with how the ‘Team’ does everything, accept that. If you want to discuss what you would have liked to see done differently, that’s great – but show some respect for the process and the people who do this for a living. It often isn’t what is said that is the issue – it’s how it is presented.

 

I’m going to ask what I always do. Common sense and courtesy. To each other as fans, to Diana as the author, to the actors busting ass to bring you the best show they can, to Ron and the ‘Team’ who are working hard behind the camera to do the same. Discuss – don’t malign. To others like me that are really enjoying the show – please say so! Don’t try to silence others opinions, give some balance out there on social media! Thank all involved for their hard work and dedication. They may be ‘celebrities’ – but they are still people with feelings that appreciate a sincere compliment/thank you as much as anyone else!

I’m tickled to say that, while I’ve been writing this and doing some other things, I’ve kept a watch on Twitter and FB and as things have progressed the positive comments are starting to balance the negative! This is great! I so hope the trend continues because, as I said above, it’s a 10-1 ratio for balance.

 

Let’s give the newest member of the family a warm welcome and trust that she is exactly right to bring this character to life for the series.

 

 

THANK YOU STARZ

Note to STARZ

 

First – I apologize. This is long again but it’s what I felt I needed to say.

 

I have made no secret of my thoughts about this show and the fandom surrounding it. Most of my blog posts have been observations about the Outlander fandom as it is the first and pretty much only fandom I’m really involved with. This fandom can and does do EPIC shit! The money that has been raised for extremely worthy charities, the hundreds of people that have gotten healthier thanks not only to Sam and his Peak Challenge in conjunction with Bear Strength – but the care and support of the fans for each other to strive to reach their fitness goals, support each other in times of trial, rejoice with each other in triumph. This is an amazing group of people and I feel blessed to be part of it – most of the time.

There is, however, a disturbing trend in this group to whine. Nothing, it seems, is ever quite good enough and simply must be complained about. When all this started – everyone was SO excited to just be finally getting it on the screen…..but then….Sam looked nothing like Jamie, Caitriona was too skinny, wrong eyes, Duncan should have hair, those are not the proper knits for the time period and on and on and on. I think for the most part people have settled with those early decisions and have moved on to other ‘issues’.

There is still a lot of ‘discussion’ _ahem_ about all that was done ‘wrong’ in Season 1 – even though all the complaining in the world won’t change it. I have suggested several times that people start discussions about Voyager – aka Season 3 – as that is not set yet. No one seems interested in this idea which is too bad, but if the value of expressing what the fans WANT to see in season 3 before it’s set can’t be grasped I’m not going to waste my time or energy trying to make people ‘get it’.

Today I saw slams against STARZ PR – they aren’t doing enough to promote the show. Over the last few months there have been load of complaints that WE (meaning Outlander) isn’t getting enough attention/press/episodes/hype/or giving the fans enough pictures or information.

Sorry, but I have to stand up and say STOP!

First, STARZ PR has been AWESOME to the fans of Outlander and, like it or not, OL is not their only popular show. All the giveaways they did in December weren’t for the fans?!. I happened to win a set of the posters. I was expecting little 8X10 promotional pictures and would have been perfectly happy with that but…..NO….these are full theatre size, high quality, absolutely awesome posters! Signed by Tobias, Catriona and Sam as appropriate.

STARZ PR got the show spotlighted at Comic Con and the PaleyFest when the show was barely going – amazing! The premiers that they have done are way above and beyond what they have done for other shows and we, as fans, have a lot of access to both the team and the stars. They did THREE premiers for the second half of the first season: LA, New York and the UK. That’s huge and bloody expensive I’m sure. No, not all fans can get to these events, but this is way more than what fans for other shows get.

Doing a bit of research, I picked five other STARZ shows and looked them up. These are shows that even I have heard about and they seem to be fairly popular. Here is what I found.

DaVinci’s Demons: Season 1 had 8 episodes / S2 = 10 Eps / S3 = 10 Eps

Ash vs Evil Dead: S1 = 10 Eps / S2 = 10 Eps

Survivor’s Remorse: S1 = 6 Eps / S2 = 10 Eps / S3 = 3 Eps?!

Torchwood: S1 = 13 Eps / S2 = 13 Eps / S3 = 5 Eps / S4 = 10 Eps (older series)

Black Sails: another favorite of mine and a fairly popular show that doesn’t get anywhere near the PR shine that OL does from what I’ve seen: S1 = 8 Eps / S2 = 10 Eps / S3 =10 Eps

So, realistically in comparison…for its very first, untried season Outlander was given two seasons worth of episodes! Other series get 10 episodes for their second season and OL / the fans got 13! Yet all the fans seem to do is complain that we are getting ripped off! I’m sure that is not how everyone feels, but this is the opinion that seems to be the most vocal – I’m really hoping the positive feelings will be expressed more prominently as time goes on.

STARZ put together an amazing team. Ron Moore has been in this business a long time and is very successful in it. So are the members of his team. They have a vision and know way better than we do the constraints they have to work under to bring in a good show under a contract. We as fans are NOT THERE. We don’t sit in on all the meetings with the accountants and suits and have to please both the fans and the guys that sign the checks. My perspectives are different and while I may not LIKE the way some specific thing was done – I can appreciate the difference in vision and wait to see where it goes. I trust them to do what is right for the series to make it a long-term deal. I’m not qualified to judge or make comments about Ron’s job because I have never done anything close to it! Same for Matt Roberts and the exceptional team of writers, Bear McCreary with his haunting/beautiful music and Jon Gary Steele and all those other marvelous people that give us such a fabulous show – including the PR staff!

I have acted a little and done some production work. I have done some costume work and I am in absolute awe of Terry Dresbach! If I could afford the trip I’d go work for her for free for a season just to learn a tiny bit of what she knows. None of this ‘experience’ makes me even remotely qualified to judge what any of these people do and have done on a daily basis for years. There is no way I would have the temerity to say they are ‘wrong’ about any decision they make for this or any other show they work on.

I’m sure I have a few people fairly steamed right now so let me qualify and clarify. No one is going to ‘like’ every single thing done on the OL show. (ah…I imagine that includes the people working on it). There is absolutely nothing wrong with expressing that opinion and why you would have liked to have seen something different. I encourage this – I always have. What I don’t like and wish people would stop doing is judging something they are not qualified to judge (i.e. STARZ PR is not capitalizing on the GG buzz enough, wasting opportunities…etc) and doing it in such a way as to be all negative. Unless you WORK or have worked in a particular field – you simply do not have enough information to ‘judge’ it. We as civilians to that have no idea what all STARZ is doing to promote the show – I’m pretty sure it isn’t all just what you see as an ad on TV/cable. This is true of any aspect of production.

STARZ has been really great to the fans of Outlander – in my opinion. Yes I won the posters which is cool but it is very unusual for me to win stuff. They have done lots of giveaways, lots of promotion, lots of ‘fan events’ – so many things that other shows aren’t getting and yet what I see most often is negative thrown at them. Why should they keep doing all they do if all they get is crap in return.

There is an idea being generated right now about kindness. Being kind to each other as fans; being kind to the actors to that work so hard to bring these characters to life; being kind to all the production team that does so much to make OL the great show that it is. Let’s include STARZ in that and be kind and grateful for all they have given us.

There is an old saying that you get more flies with honey than vinegar. People are perfectly within their rights to express disappointment with something – but it can still be done in a positive way. I hope more and more fans start expressing, loudly, all that we like and appreciate about this great show and the marvelous people that get it on the screen for us.

A final tidbit to mull over. If the loudest expressions about the show on social media are negative (this was wrong, that was wrong, hated this or that, Ron/writers/STARZ is ruining the story, etc.) why would anyone checking the show out want to watch it? I encourage all fans to start tweeting, facebooking, tumblering (whatever your preferred SM platform is) all the stuff you love about the show. Counter a negative/judgmental comment with something positive. DO NOT attack the person! DO NOT attack the opinion – simply balance it with something positive.

 

 

 

Personal Responsibility

As a quick (for me) follow-up to my recent post.

I’ve seen many comments about how all the prevailing promotion of ‘Sexy Sam’ is somehow all STARZ fault. WTF?! Yes, the opening campaign to promote Outlander was ‘The Kilt Drops’….it was catchy, it got people’s attention, it did the job of grabbing interest to promote a brand new – and for the studio risky – show. Marketing and PR did their job, but I for one never saw them as putting Sam out there as the sex symbol he has become – that was the fans doing.

The real tragedy here isn’t that Sam has become a huge sensation. He’s paid his dues with years of hard work and it’s giving him great bennies now. The tragedy is that his so called ‘fans’ take no personal responsibility for their own actions. I’ve just been informed on Twitter people are sheep so they follow. I say that is a cop-out.

 

And – if you insist on being a sheep, at least find a decent leader.

 

Moral leader

Here is what I try to do when it comes to SM – I can’t change or dictate others actions, only my own. I’m not perfect. I screw up, I get angry and, I have drool days.

Before I post that picture and/or comment or innuendo – I think of someone close to me and replace them in that post. Would I want to post such a thing about my best friend or my brother or son or husband? How about your daughter or sister, your mom or BFF? Would you want such things posted about yourself? If not, why the hell would I/you post it about Sam or any of the other myriad of really great looking guys out there?! There is light banter and fun innuendo and then there is OTT – and really, we all know where that line is.  The same goes for Caitriona or anyone on the female side of things.

I’m not saying I am a saint, nor do I expect others to be – but take a little personal responsibility for your own thoughts and actions. Stop blaming everyone but yourself for what goes on in the world of social media.

 

I know there are a lot of FB groups that are doing activities, I’ve seen some truly cool creative people doing Outlander trees and finding ways to celebrate and enjoy the show/books until Season 2 starts. Find like-minded fans to come up with memes and such to positively support/promote the show from a grass roots place and get new people revved up about watching or reading.

 

On a related note – believe it or not, Outlander is not the entire world. STARZ has many other shows going on that need promotion and attention. I’m quite sure there PR department is working up some great campaign for Season 2 – STARZ & Sony wants this to be successful: i.e. make money for them. All good things come to those who wait. Is there not some other show or book or activity that you can find to take up your time until the new campaign starts?

 

Outlander is awesome on many levels – but it is one story out of millions.

 

There is a whole world out there. Find something to fill the gap until the new season starts.

 

 

To Ransom a Fan’s Soul

No….not a misspelling. I’m not even going to attempt to recap or overview the Outlander series finale. There many really good articles already out for this and no doubt there will be more. This blog/rant/observation is about me as a fan and what I see in and experience from, other fans.

First, I see a lot of bashing out there. Every fan has something that is vitally important to THEM and when that thing is not included in the series it bothers them. They have every right to express that. While I personally think eye color, hair being THIS shade of red over THAT shade of red or which hand gets smashed by the hammer are very minor things to get in a snit about, they matter to others. I have a request for both sides of this issue no matter what the specific in question is. For the person that couldn’t care less – be kind. Every single fan has the right to voice their frustrations. For those of you voicing frustrations – STOP WHINING! Please tell us how you think and feel and why it’s important, but please don’t subject the rest of the fandom to what comes across as a toddlers temper tantrum or a teens moaning about how unfair life is.

Next, I continue to be utterly amazed by this show and the unprecedented access we have to it as fans. We’ve been invited in since the very beginning – the players interact with us, STARZ listens to us, and we make a difference as fans. This is a very new experience for me and I’m excited by it – and also very frustrated. Something I accepted going into this is that it wouldn’t be like the books. The story can’t be like the books because they are two very different mediums. How you get things across is very different, how the arcs have to go, how much you can do with only 16 or 13 hours to do it in.

I just don’t get people that think chewing on Ron or anyone else on the team about something you saw in the last few weeks will DO anything. Too much of this, not enough of that. The stuff you saw the last two weeks were filmed seven months ago. People are just digging into DiA and discussing it – problem is, the episodes are already mapped out for Season 2. If you really want to make suggestions, you should already be discussing Voyager. At the end of the day, WE aren’t writing this show. We as fans don’t see the vision that Ron and the writers have. We can’t see where they are going.

Some comments I saw looking through various articles/stories today that really show this.

“Too many side stories – not enough Jamie & Claire – THEY are what is important not all this other stuff!”

“Way too much focus on BJR and the rape / torture. Far more important to show J & C and healing.”

“Jamie is being emasculated just to make Claire look stronger. He’s a shadow of the character we know and love, a child rather than the mature man he is.”

“Too much sex/violence/nudity – I know what happens I don’t need it in my face. Focus on the important part – J & C’s relationship”

ALL these comments – are from book readers. As herself said in a post recently “PUT THE BOOK DOWN.” Seriously………………there are a lot of viewers out there who have never read the books. This show isn’t just for the longtime fans of the books – though Ron and the team are doing their best to make it as good as possible for those longtime, dedicated fans and still be a visual medium. STARZ Outlander is also for brand new fans that are being introduced to this story by the series. It HAS to stand on its own. The relationship is there, people who haven’t read the books comment often on how intense it is; how much ‘more’ it is than most television out there. All that is going on around them and the people close to them are part of their relationship and need to be shown too – unfortunately Ron and team doesn’t have an hour per chapter to do all that we’d like to see.

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Was 116 hard for me to watch – HELL yes. Was it too much – in my personal opinion, no. Ron did it right. This is such a pivotal point in the entire story. This one event haunts Jamie through all the books to come and shapes him in ways that make him the great man/character we are all so crazy about. In order for that to work down the line, the audience (the ones that don’t have all that background and thousands of words in the book) needed to really be there with Jamie, feel what he felt, break like he did. It was necessary and very, very well done. What I was thinking as I watched was – ‘wow – the torture is there, but you don’t SEE it as such. The initial forced rape – the branding, the rest is all creepy tenderness. It’s still a violation as it’s against Jamie’s will – but it’s what it does to the viewer’s mind – much like Jamie’s. How could we as an audience possibly understand and appreciate what Jamie becomes if we don’t taste it ourselves? Jamie was naked – but did you ever actually SEE anything? BJR walks naked from the bed, totally in character and what would have happened. How much of the uncomfortableness is what was shown to you – and how much was where your own head took you.

Same argument as above for the sex/nudity/violence etc. I have never felt (and most of the comments I’ve seen agree) that the show has been gratuitous. The book people know these parts of the story and don’t ‘need’ them – but the series only people do. There is no possible way to take one of Diana’s books and condense it down under 16 hours and keep everything. If the show focused on ONLY J & C – we’d have lost the series only fans a long time ago. The series is a facet on a larger gem – the idea is to get people wound up with that facet so they want to experience the whole gem.

As far as Jamie being emasculated………….I just can’t get this. Yes, I have read the series, a few times. In reading Outlander I saw Jamie as fairly mature but far from perfect. He makes mistakes, he has a temper he doesn’t control at times; he acts rashly and doesn’t always think things through. He is still doing that (though not as often to be sure) in MOBY. Emasculated? It takes a very strong man to deal with Claire. He doesn’t cow before her, he is her equal, her match. He doesn’t just bow to her will, he thinks through who she is (even before he really knew) and makes decisions that are good and right, not just in line with what he’s always known and tradition. That takes huge strength of character. He has Claire’s devotion, love and respect – a weak man wouldn’t have those things. I didn’t start seeing the Jamie everyone raves about until he had spent some time around his cousin Jared in Paris and had to start dealing with Charles. After he lived through the fire of BJR and Wentworth. AFTER he wanted to give up on life and take the easy way out. AFTER he was battered, bruised and broken beyond redemption in his own mind.

Gods I always go long on these. Eh……won’t say ‘sorry’ – but I hope I at least keep it interesting.

Finally – I want, as a fan, to redeem myself of any bad behavior, unkind words or abject stupidity that I have fallen to since the beginning of this adventure. I want to do this by trying, however inadequately, to give some praise and thanks.

Nope. Can’t do it. Too long and either will detract from the other. I want the “THANK YOU” section to be done right…not hurried or thrown out. So that will come a bit later.

Will the voting never END?!?!

Vote Sam

As a (fairly) dedicated Outlander fan, I’ve been immersed in ‘fandom’ as I never have before. The whole experience with Outland has been marvelous – I mean contests (that I don’t tend to try for because living on a boat I don’t have a lot of room for swag), pictures, videos, lots of access to the stars and the production team and just……………… it almost gets overwhelming. I don’t follow everyone associated because so much gets retweeted that I already seem many things multiple times. Of course I miss things too. I also have very inconsistent and poor internet connection so it makes it hard to be as current as I’d like to be.

 

We have been voting….a LOT….for months……………and it’s getting old. Not all the voting has been a positive experience. The Anglophile polls with Caitriona got very nasty and I will admit I lost my cool a bit with the Dr. Who fans. Not proud of it, but it did seem to knock down a lot of the real trouble makers for the rest of the poll. I promised not to ‘post’ in the final round as self-inflicted punishment and avoid any other problems. That was very hard as our fandom was having such a wonderful time commenting in character and just generally having a party.

We, the fans, have busted our collective *ss to win many of these polls for our beloved books, show and actors. They appreciate it, are overwhelmed by it and probably wonder just a little bit about our sanity. I wonder about my sanity all the time so that’s ok. I’m sure at this point many are thinking ‘do we really need to win yet another poll?’

Here is my thought on it. Sony and Starz are in this to make money. Straight up that is the deal. They have found a great formula working with the fans and incorporating them into their marketing strategy for both Outlander and Black Sails (maybe others shows too but these are the only two I follow). It works very well and has been very successful for them. But if either of these shows starts getting tepid responses, doesn’t continue to gain viewers, basically stop paying for themselves….they will be cut and something else will replace them. It’s business. No matter how great the story, the acting and all the work that puts it out there, if it doesn’t pay for itself it will be gone.

To me, as annoying as all this voting can be, what we are doing besides showing our love/support for Outlander – we are getting the word out there in many places. We are getting the show and the stars recognized, in front of people from other fandoms and genres. It’s working and that is a good thing. Many may not have caught in the tributes to Leonard Nimoy that Sam got included in the lineup. That is actually pretty huge.

We all have lives away from Twitter and the polls – I get that. I just finished a novel & am going through the process of looking for an agent & jumping through those hoops.  Kids, jobs, other fandoms to support – all that stuff. The voting is tiresome and we’ve all done a lot of it. I think it’s worth it.

The more visibility the show gets, the bigger the fan base the more people we will have to vote in these things. All of that gives the show a much higher chance of being kept on the air. So keep voting, and keep encouraging others to vote.

STRATEGY!!!! Hit it hard early on if possible and get a big lead then KEEP voting! Maintaining a good lead is way easier than struggling to get back over 50% as we found out with the E!online poll.

The polls that can be voted on multiple times – we tend to do well on. We are a tenacious group that have a strong desire to win for our show! There are, however, polls that only allow one vote by a given IP address (like the SPOILER TV rounds going right now 1 July 2015). These are harder for us because we simply don’t have the numbers that some of the other fandoms do. So it comes full circle. If we are a positive, upbeat fandom that attracts people with our actions, attitudes and positive comments on other polls we will hopefully gain more fans that will help us in single vote polls in the future.

Something else to remember – for the fans of The 100 or  Supernatural or whatever show we happen to be up against in whatever poll – THEIR show is just as important to them as Outlander is to us. We don’t understand their dedication and obsession any more than they get ours – HOWEVER – don’t diss their show or actors. Don’t say things like “don’t see how you can like that silly boy who can’t act – he doesn’t hold a candle to Sam!” ……………………Please, I beg you don’t say stuff like this!  You know how your hackles get up when people say stuff like this about Sam/Cait/the show……imagine what it does with them! Stay positive always – you attract more flies with honey than vinegar and people from other fandoms are far more likely to give Outlander a shot if we stay positive and say nice things about them and their fandom. Don’t lie – but:

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Tulach Àrd!

Edited 3/11/15 @6pm
Edited 7/1/15 @10am PT
Edited 7/17/15 @3:18pm PT

Outlander “Sassenach”

Well…WOW!

I am not the long-term Outlander fan that many have been. I run the book department in a St. Vincent de Paul store which has opened this lifelong reader up to books and authors I never knew about. Herself and Outlander were one of my very best finds, though it was only a couple of years ago.

As much as I loved the books, I really liked each casting choice as it was made. While they may not have been exactly what I ‘pictured’ I had confidence in Diana’s confidence and liked who they seemed to be. I have so enjoyed all the excitement leading up to the series, the stories and tweets and learning the process of how great television is made.

Thank you and great appreciation to all the cast and crew and production gang that took the time and energy to include all of us in the wondrous process. It’s been an awesome ride and we aren’t done yet!

I’ve tried to get my guy to read the books since he has a lot of interest in history, but so far – alas – he hasn’t gotten into them. I watched the first episode twice and was so very pleased! I wanted more!!!! It will be worth the wait for the DVD’s. Tonight, my guy watched the episode with me, and it seems to have mad a favorable impression. I’ll let him tell you his thoughts.

 

Let’s see, where to start?….

I have not read any of the Outlander books yet. My exposure to the subject comes from hearing many times particular aspects of the story line from my significant other. She has become quite the fan. This actually encourages me as I value her taste and wisdom in her reading material. She has a fantastic mind for the written word and subjects that interest her, for the most part, interest me as well as she doesn’t usually go in for the “fluff” that many seem to be driven to. Thinking material is more her style.

That being said, I watched episode one with her tonight (she has seen it a few times already) and I will admit that I am pretty darn impressed. The actors chosen for the roles already feel “real” to me even with only one episode. I was very impressed with the dramatic differences between the portrayals of cultures between the time frames. The 40’s era felt so, how shall I say, like a war documentary or epic portrayal of war in that era. I didn’t really expect that from an hour long episode. I found myself wanting to explore Frank’s genealogy along with him. I’m always fascinated by where people “come from” in that regard. I felt the tension between the two very believable. I had the misfortune to be away from my significant other for about five years as well, and I can tell you that the strain in re-awakening a relationship is a hardship that is often overlooked.

I was a little disappointed that it took so long to get to the earlier Scottish period as that has been the part of the story relayed to me so far that really struck me as fascinating, but I understand that with a multi-part series of this length, the back story and lead up to the actual travel is important to cover first. Maybe I was hoping for a lot of “flashbacks” to explain that part and get on with the part that I am interested in. I know, selfish.

Overall, the experience surprised me most in the fact that as a “not fan” I am looking forward to the next episode, and the next. I see so much potential for exploring this idea and the cast so far has more than lived up to the job. I may just have to give in and start reading !