Fandom

A Hunger Games Resolution

How soon we do forget, huh?

It’s already January 7th and this is our first post of 2016. Why? Because we’re getting older, life is busy, and frankly, there just isn’t that much to talk about on The Hunger Games front in that topsy-turvy time period between the movie leaving theaters and the DVD release. There also the landslide of information from other fandoms we’re interested– every show restarting, every movie trailer, every new book released. And Star Wars. HOLY SHIT GUYS, STAR WARS.

But let’s be clear:

It ain’t over. It’s never over.

Yes, eventually this fandom will slow down as there’s a stop in new information. More than likely, it will pick up once again when Lionsgate goes through with a questionable sequel or two in future years. Somewhere in between there, Victor’s Village will probably say “Sayonara!” because running a website costs money and is a bit discouraging when you don’t have anything to post about. Yet in the infamous words of another fandom we really enjoy… BUT IT IS NOT THIS DAY!

hunger-games-district12-saluteThis fandom still brings us tons of joy. Not necessarily in news form at the moment, but with the friendships we maintain and fond memories and following the actors as they explore new ventures. Those things don’t disappear as soon as the steady stream of news does. There’s something bigger than the mass media we consume.

So here’s our Hunger Games resolution for 2016: We’re not going to be “so over it” now that the story is done playing out on the big screen and not being thrown into our news stream everyday. We’re not going to let the new things we may like to talk about make us forget about the things that originally got us talking five years ago. Our attention span isn’t that short, right?

Yes, we’re all probably going to be talking about The Hunger Games like a 92-year-old recalling their 20s in about two years, but when we do, we’re still going to champion the fuck outta this fandom. Because there’s meaning and value in the content, even when there isn’t something shiny and new to go with it.

Once A Tribute, Always A Tribute,
The Girl With The Pearl

The Illegal Spoiler Games

Okay kiddos, let’s talk about over-excitement and why it could get you in some serious trouble!

When you’re as immersed in The Hunger Games fandom as most of us are, it’s hard to TALK spoilers. We’re not talking about the very movie-specific spoilers now, but we talk book spoilers all the time, so we get it. You know what’s happening, so you just want to go out there with other fans and DISCUSS.

Officially released stills = Fair game DUH

Officially released stills = Fair game DUH

We shouldn’t just throw all our obvious spoiler feels all over the Internet because, ya know, we’re all probably friends with someone who hasn’t read the books and didn’t get to see the movie right away for one reason or another. It’s obnoxious, but we’ve noticed it’s not even the worst of it nowadays.

Let’s talk technology, young’uns.

Pretty much everyone has a smartphone. And Twitter or Instagram or Tumblr or something like that. It is still 1000% illegal to take photos or clips of the movie screen during key moments and put them online. There’s a huge difference between visuals and the written word. There are specific revelations you can only get from visuals. But there’s more to it than that– not only does posting or reposting visual spoilers make you an absolute tool, there’s a wide variety of punishments awaiting, many of which involve a legal team coming after you.

Cressida says "Make smart plans so you don't look like a douche!"

Cressida says “Think before you post so you don’t look like a douche!”

Yes, your post could get lots of reaction from other fans. Please remember that getting lots of likes on a post on social media regarding a popular fandom does not actually make YOU popular or special (Trust us, we’ve reminded ourselves plenty. We are experts in this realization.) Is the inflated sense of ego worth an account suspension or a cease and desist letter? The answer is NO.

Also, a lot of fans just think what you’re doing is uncool and ruining the full experience for others. So there’s just that good ol’ “Don’t be a dick” factor.

If you haven’t seen this on your timelines much, this rant may sound odd. But we’ve been seeing it everywhere–some of it is even directed to us– and we know we’re not the only ones, which is pretty ridiculous. We want fans to have more respect for the film than that.

Let’s all learn our boundaries and the world will be a better place!

Everyone Deserves A Fair Spoiler Warning!
The Girl With The Pearl

Hunger Games On The High Seas

Every now and then, we get an email that makes us say “Hmmmm… Where the heck did that come from?”

One of those was from Angry Goat Productions, who wanted us to talk about their Cosplay Cruises— more specifically, The Hunger Games themed one. Because “It’s not just a Con… It’s a Concation!”

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The idea of a con cruise is not an original or uncommon one, but it’s something that certain fans clearly enjoy. Angry Goat knows, because they’ve got Cosplay Cruises for just every about every major fandom out there right now. They’re working in the business of fandom, working on our passions and hopes of being around like-minded people.

But our first question, of all things, was this: How the heck do they think they’ll get this passed Lionsgate legal?! Either they have a deal in place or they’re about to face some fury, because LG comes down pretty hard on people who could even potentially profit using the namesake of their major franchise.

We’re not saying it’s a terrible idea, but we don’t know if this would take off YET. Most fandom cruises follow fandoms that are heavy on nostalgia and only 3 1/2 years after the movie franchise began, we don’t think the fandom is quite ready for nostalgia.

So what do you think? Would you celebrate with other fans on the high seas? Or is this something meant to cash in on fandom?

Thoughts Of The Island Arena In 3.. 2.. 1..
The Girl With The Pearl

The Hunger Games Fandom Prank Parade

As fandom lovers, we have a bittersweet relationship with April Fools Day. Because it’s okay to get tricked every once in a while, but fangirls and fanboys are OBSESSIVE, it put it lightly. We believe everything. We react strongly to everything. We lose our cool… A LOT.

Yesterday, watching Twitter was essentially watching a bunch of fans freak out when they read a fake headline, then freak out again when they realize what day it is and feel like an idiot. But it’s okay, people! Everyone falls for April Fools Day jokes! So let’s recount the best of them.

It started with THG Australia. BECAUSE TIME ZONES. They came right out the gate with this baby:

Without calling anyone out specifically, we think it’s straight out hilarious that actual entertainment websites picked this up and reported it as fact. Did they look at the schedule?! The cast toured six countries for Catching Fire and had massive issues with exhaustion and disease, to the point where Jennifer Lawrence went straight from the last stop on the LA red carpet to the hospital. An 11-country tour schedule would kill them.

For getting news outlets to truly believe this, THG Asutralia wins the day. But there were still tons of other funny ones!

Down With The Capitol played on the fandom’s worst (and most irrational) fear:

Jabberjays worked that angle in a different way. One in which Liam Hemsworth pulled a Kim Kardashian:

Quarter Quell stirred up the crowd by announcing the Mockingjay Part 2 has been pushed back until March of 2016 to properly celebrate the first film’s anniversary. People were pretty sure that one was the end of the world, for which we applaud them.

It is fun getting duped? NOPE. But on that special day, we were all reminded not to take ourselves too seriously and always, ALWAYS consider what you’re reading before you react. Kudos, guys!

We Would Have Participated But We Take Our Days Off SERIOUSLY,
The Girl With The Pearl

Dancing With Willow

Okay, I did something I’m not necessarily proud of. I watched Dancing With The Stars. TWICE.

Participation perks include free Glamor Shots!

Participation perks include free Glamor Shots!

When Willow Shields aka Primrose Everdeen was first announced for the show, we discussed our mixed feelings about a young, talented actress going on a television show typically populated by burnouts (and the occasional legend who is just really bored).

But then something else kicked in… persistent, unnerving CURIOSITY.

Well… Was she good? How complex are the dances? What’s the production quality on a show like that, anyway?

Someone retweeted Mark Ballas saying she was underscored. Was she underscored? We had to discover for ourselves. So we watched:

And hell, Mark was right! She kinda WAS underscored. Because if Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper’s dance in Silver Linings Playbook managed an average of 5, that shit was AT LEAST a 7, dammit! Why are you trying to take this joy away from a 14-year-old?!

But I know from my cheerleading days (I was 12. Allow me to keep my dignity!) that clean lines are really important in competition and.. *sigh*

And that was all it took. The morbid curiosity could only build from there. Oh damn, those dance actually look really difficult. Were they easier on her the next week? There were a couple problems in the first routine. Could she improve?

So yesterday, my bum met the couch once again for round 2:

And it was much better. And there’s still hope for Team MarkingJay– tackiest thing we’ve ever heard, by the way– despite the fact that she’ll eventually lose to Rumer Willis’ crazy-ass legs brought to you by years of personal trainers.

No, we’re not keeping this up. This show just ain’t our jive. But now that we’ve got a couple views out of the way, it’s nice to see that Willow is genuinely having fun with it and not allowing the competition element to drive her crazy. She’s too young for any drama!

But Not Too Young To Cuddle With Mark Ballas Sooooo Heyyyyy,
The Girl With The Pearl

Why We Come Back to The Hunger Games

Mockingjay Part 1 DVDs should all be in our hot little hands now, and our DVD or Blu-ray players should be whirling away as we watch every last tidbit. Or, um– maybe you’re like me and work too much, and instead of being the good Hunger Games fan, you fall into bed every night, and in place of having a re-watch of your favorite scenes, you pick up a book that has nothing to do with the Hunger Games, perhaps the book even takes place on another planet, continent, in an other century, and in the end are able to only read a handful of pages at a time– because you’re just that tired.

Hi, I’m a Hunger Games fan who hasn’t done much Hunger Games fan-ing in a while. Some of us live our fandom lives like there’s no tomorrow, they have Tumblr’s, and Etsy shops, they host fandom meet ups, and make manips, and write fan fiction, others only delve into them when the timing is right. Drinking Games, re-watches with enthusiastic, but fandom-ignorant family members, excitement over the beginning of promotional materials for the last and final installment of the film series be damned– fandom is an ephemeral thing that for many can only be sustainable for short bursts

OMG it's 19th century Peeta! No... it's Oliver Twist.

OMG it’s 19th century Peeta! No… it’s Oliver Twist.

of time over a smattering of years, because seriously– if we stayed at the excitement level we’re at when Peeta goes Hijacked!Peeta on us– we might all be dead.

I burn for the days when every last scrap of Hunger Games gossip, and minimal legitimate material was enough to keep us going for weeks, hell– months on end. Philosophical blithering aside, I question almost constantly why we keep coming back for more?

Are we gluttons, are we masochist? Or is fandom something else entirely?

Brawlin’ With The Mockingjay

This will be the first and last time I talk about the MTV Movie Brawl. Except for social media, possibly. We swear!

No, it hasn’t started yet. It’s still in the nomination phase. Yet… the heat is already on for the MTV Movie Brawl and Mockingjay Part 2. For some reason, this sucker always seems to be the one to get fans all sorts of riled up.

mgid-uma-image-mtv

And honestly, y’all? We don’t know if we’re with it this year.

How I Met Your Mother had a funny little gag called The Murtaugh List, aka a mental catalog of things that make you say the infamous line from Lethal Weapon’s Roger Murtaugh: “I’m getting too old for this shit.”

The MTV Movie Brawl is on our Murtaugh list. And it’s pretty easy to see why, as evidenced by a fellow VV writer and a friend of the site:

As we’ve pointed out before, these awards have more to do with which fans are most likely to vote repeatedly than which fandom is actually the most beloved. Sure, Catching Fire won in 2013. But in 2012 and 2014, the franchise lost to films that we very mildly popular by comparison.

See, we don’t mind losing in these races. It’s gonna happen, especially since we’re not all screaming from the rafters about voting like other fandoms will. And that’s okay! But it would feel a little more realistic if the results reflected the actual box office opening weekends a little more closely. For instance, losing to Captain America, Guardians of the Galaxy, or even Divergent last year would have made some sense, as clearly large numbers of people were actually anticipating these films. We know this because they had solid opening weekends and a big box office pull. Veronica Mars was an indie and had a limited release including VOD so obviously the numbers weren’t going to as big, but the film didn’t even make back its $6 million budget. And while we definitely appreciate the Marshmallows enthusiasm, it didn’t leave much space for accuracy.

Surely, there’s quite the possibility that we’ll lose again because another crowd because there’s so many hardcore fangirls out there, people. Though it makes us slightly cringe-y, we’re betting on the Fifty Shades of Grey crowd to be the over-enthusiastic one this year.

So Yeah… We’re Murtaugh Listing It,
The Girl With The Pearl

Victor’s Village 2014 Year In Review!

We know that 2015 is officially upon us, but we’re gonna reminisce about 2015 one last time!

Every year, we like to stop and say thanks to you lovely readers! We’ve been doing our thing here since 2014 and we’re super lucky to have had years of fun, debates, laughs, revelations, and interactions with you all! You keep us on our toes at times, but we love it.

And think of it! JJ has already been here for almost one year! She’s been such an incredible addition to the Victor’s Village team and we couldn’t be more thankful!

Thanks to WordPress, we also have some official fun facts to share along with our own observations. We’ll start with a graphic that blows our minds every time:

world map vv

Whoa! Mind you, we know people end up on various websites for a lot of funky reasons. It’s still amazing to see that people from all over the world have visited.

Also, we’re not quite sure what we did differently to see a surge in German viewers this year, but… DANKE!

Our busiest day overall was November 23, the Saturday after Mockingjay Part 1’s anticipated release. Most fans seemed to find a chance to see it by then and there was plenty discussion here! Still keeping major spoilers out of publication that time, our post that day was “My One Mockingjay Part 1 Gripe” in which Them There Eyes discussed the disappearance of Gale’s family from book to film.

However, our most viewed post written in 2014 deliberated Catching Fire’s deleted scenes— and the scenes that were teased during marketing and NOT released even as deleted scenes (at least, not yet).

We also got lots of love from regular commenters, all of whom have added great discussion to our oftentimes random thoughts!

commenters vv

Thanks, y’all!

We got a critically debated but immensely satisfying movie in Mockingjay Part 1 this year, but it came with a few lows. There wasn’t much marketing until juuuuust before the film release and we really, really did not care for the soundtrack (and earned some unintentionally hilarious trolls for saying so.) More than that, the world lost an incredibly talented and inspiring actor, Philip Seymour Hoffman, who we were lucky enough to have on board as Plutarch Heavensbee.

But we’ve also adopted #frappuccino, geeked out over THG’s lady badasses with Elizabeth Banks, and learned that somewhere out there, a deleted scene featuring Finnick Odair in his underwear definitely exists! We’ll take all that awesome, for sure!

2015 is going to be a tough but spectacular year for The Hunger Games fandom as the movie franchise comes to a close. We can’t wait to share it with all of you! It’s going to be the most crazy fun we’ve had together yet!

The Girl With The Pearl

#UnlockMockingjay Madness

So remember when we posted on Tuesday about the Mockingjay Mosaic campaign and how we felt better about something like that than social media campaigns that make fans work toward media the studio was ultimately going to give fans anyway?

Things got WAY uncomfortable about 18 hours later when Lionsgate released a social media campaign exactly matching that criteria. Whoops! WE HAD NO IDEA, LG! WE’RE NOT MIND READERS! WE SWEAR!

First came the bait! Retweet #UnlockMockingjay enough and you’ll get this shiny new preview!

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And oh man, did we want that shiny new preview. WANT!

Through the act of being wicked smaht (as we like to say in New England), someone somewhere– we honestly don’t know who because it was already common knowledge by the time we tuned in– realized that the algorithm involved would require 50k tweets to unlock the video. The hashtag challenge launched at 12pm EST. By the time I finished my lunch around 1pm EST, the buzz was firmly built, the fan tweets were rolling out, and the tweet-o-meter thingamabob was already at 60%.

Smooooooth sailing, right? WRONG!

4pm rolls around and it feels like victory (or as much victory as you can get out of a Wednesday afternoon.) WORK DAY DONE! COMFY SWEATPANTS ON! MOCKINGJAY-O-METER… BACK DOWN TO 44% PERCENT?

Apparently, at some point in there, Lionsgate remembered that Hunger Games fans are ravenous beasts who considered new Mockingjay previews their very lifeblood. 50k tweets probably took about 2 hours to complete and obviously, they were hoping NOT to release things that early. The re-calibration experts in the fandom looked into it and realized the new magic number was 360k tweets.

And that is when the hilarious, quote-filled fandom madness really took off, thanks to the brilliance of Jabberjays.net turning it into a bit of a game:

At a couple points, the widget jumped. Word on the streets of Twitter was that we only needed 261.5k tweets, then 260k. Baffled by the odd numbers but still wanting our Mockingjay preview, things started to get real cray cray:

Throughout this, we get a couple of pre-teaser teasers in the form of new stills. But it just wasn’t enough to satiated the NEEEEEED! Seriously. We make those zombies on The Walking Dead look tame. The frustration kicked in:

Even though we certainly felt that frustration, we were also starting to feel a little bad. Because this “unlocking” campaign despite its problems and the later-realized factoid that it was rigged to release at 7pm no matter how many tweets, we realized we were having a lot of fun. Not that Lionsgate necessarily planned it would turn into a quote-ridden meme fest, but other fans and fansites turned it into a really witty game and we really enjoyed getting involved.

Not to pat this fandom on the collective back too much, but WOW, WE ARE CLEVER AND HILARIOUS AND WONDERFUL! And #UnlockMockingjay kinda ended up bringing out the best in us.

Of course, we also got this spectacular sneak peek out of it:

But that deserves its own post, don’t you think?

It Was A Pleasure Being Ridiculous With You,
The Girl With The Pearl