I used to live with a bunch of My Little Pony fans. It was just as surreal as you'd expect.
When My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic came out, I thought nothing of it. It seemed like a cute, harmless children's TV show. (That's exactly what it is, by the way.) Imagine my surprise when my roommates told me about all the Neo-Nazis who have really taken to the show.
Yes... Neo-Nazis. Believe it or not, white supremacy is an actual problem in the My Little Pony fandom. There have been entire articles dedicated to the phenomenon, like this one from The Atlantic. Check it out: It's a trip.
After Redditor pee_rose asked the online community, "What is something that was ruined by its fans?" people shared their stories.
Some murder cases. For example the Chris Watts case. The groups about him share the dumbest conspiracy theories, or "this dude on tinder looks like him!!!" and post a random innocent person's picture that looks nothing like him as if some dude in prison has Tinder and is 3 miles from you when you live in another state from where he's incarcerated.
Rupaul's Drag Race. Some fans are currently harassing the mother of one of the contestants. A former contestant nearly killed himself because of online harassment last year, and other contestants have quit drag altogether.
Imagine a genuinely good show that 90% of fans enjoy quietly and normally, but because the remaining 10% feel the need to publicly broadcast their enthusiasm in the creepiest possible way at conventions, the media picks up on that and everyone assumes the whole fanbase is like them.
See: My Little Pony.
The answer is Star Wars right? The answer to this sort of question is always Star Wars.
"This goes across..."
This goes across multiple fandoms, really, but shipping. And I say this as a (chill) shipper myself. Is it really the end of the world if your ship isn't canon, or someone (politely) disagrees with you? Get a life, man...
"There's a lot..."
There's a lot of gatekeeping and elitism in the heavy metal community. Classic rock fans are more inclusive.
"Anime is getting increasingly..."
Anime is getting increasingly "meta" and pandering directly to a subset of its formerly much broader audience.
Steven Universe. They constantly harassed people over fan art or cosplays of the characters for fat-shaming, homophobic, or being racist. They got angry at a dying kid with cancer for watching an episode early. They bullied a girl for fan art and she tried to kill themselves and I think they got mad when the creators called the harassers out. I don't want to be associated with the absolute psychotic fans of that show.
"I really hate..."
I really hate all the hostile s*** that comes out when people talk about games... so-called 'true gamers' trashing genres that they don't play and look down on others for playing. Or screeching when games don't follow 'their' idea of how it should play... that somehow because of it, said game is pandering for points etc. How dare video games be different?
Like let me just watch pixels on a screen and get away from reality for a bit.
"I still watch..."
Anime. I still watch the medium, but I cannot stand any online anime community and most of the anime fans that I have met in real life tend to be people of low character. If not for the fanbase perhaps anime would have been part of pop culture a long time ago.
"We have people..."
My Hero Academia. we have people out here sending death threats to the author for not making their gay ships canon.
"And the thing is..."
Christianity. Probably most religions, but I was born into Christianity so its the one I know the most about and feel most comfortable criticizing.
And the thing is, whether you believe it or not, its basic tenets are quite beautiful.
"It isn't even a question..."
I refuse to touch Supernatural and Doctor Who because of the fanbase. It isn't even a question of whether I think they're good or not, I just find fans I've interacted with to be THAT creepy.
"I liked one song..."
K-pop, I liked one song and I would've wanted to see if there are any other good songs but the fandom made me sure I wouldn't listen to another second of a K-pop song.
"I fell in love with Harley..."
Harley Quinn - this is not to say it's all bad but a lot of the newer/younger fans idolise one version of her and sometimes bash the original character instead.
I'm tired of seeing Margot Robbie cosplays that only seem to care about how "hot " or "fake crazy" the character is, how rabid some harlivy shippers get, and when folks turn the Joker, one of DC's best villains, from a terrifying yet funny and unpredictable killer to just an abusive ex-boyfriend trope.
I fell in love with Harley because she was a breath of fresh air - she was sweet, humourous, smart, not over sexualised, made genuine friendships amongst other villains, and had a sweet gimmick. She was where she was because she made mistakes, fell in with the wrong crowd, and was naive.
She wasn't in the criminal life because she liked crime or revenge, just because she loved the absolute wrong person. Were there some dodge stories that failed to show her development? Absolutely! But there were stories out there that did advance her character, which this part of the fandom ignore, similar to how she was straight (could have been bi, but definitely had a preference for men) but folks want to forget that this happened and occasionally claim it's bi-erasure (but then they sleep on the other pasty white Jewish lesbian in Gotham for some reason).
Currently, she has a few good comics but largely in her solo run she's just a violent, self-obsessed thug who breaks fourth walls, gets whatever she wants, and very rarely gets called out for her bullshit.
Sorry for the novel, it's just hard to watch a character you love become an (at times) nightmare version of herself and everyone else tells you that it's much better now. Again there are some really good recent interpretations of her character but there are also about as many versions of her as there are of Batman so...
"The commercials at the time..."
For me it was anime. Back in the early '90s, all the anime fans I met were rather full of themselves. The whole, "It's not a cartoon," said in the most condescending way, as if there were something wrong with watching cartoons, really put me off.
The commercials at the time didn't help since they reinforced the notion that cartoons were for immature idiots while anime was for cool sophisticated people. So I said, "Screw you!" to the whole thing.
It wasn't till my adulthood that I realized I did watch and enjoy some anime. I just didn't know it was called that at the time. There's likely plenty more I'd probably have liked if I hadn't developed the prejudice.