Competition can be a very healthy thing if approached properly. It can help motivate and push people forward and lead to the creation of great things and timeless moments. On the contrary, if it becomes ever-consuming, it can be to our detriment. This can go for athletics, business, or even comicbook fandom. As fans of comicbooks and everything that encompasses that world, we’ve seen plenty of friendly and not so friendly competition, especially between D.C. and Marvel.
Here in 2018, the ugly side of competition in fandom is going to likely rear its head on the Internet and social media, and because it’s online and nobody has to do it directly in other’s presence, it can get downright nasty.
One example of that was early in the year as Marvel Studios’ Black Panther was readying to make its debut in theaters. A group of trolls, hellbent on stopping Disney’s successful run at the box office with Marvel films, put a plan together to try and cut the growing hype of the Ryan Coogler directed film by lowering it’s fan score on Rotten Tomatoes through direct action by downvoting and also by spreading bad reviews on social media through fake pages and bots.
Ultimately, Facebook shut the group down and Rotten Tomatoes would catch on and release this statement:
“We at Rotten Tomatoes are proud to have become a platform for fans to debate and discuss entertainment and we take that responsibility seriously. While we respect our fans’ diverse opinions, we do not condone hate speech. Our team of security, network and social experts continue to closely monitor our platforms and any users who engage in such activities will be blocked from our site and their comments removed as quickly as possible.”
The truth of the matter is that the better both companies do with their films, the better the landscape of the comicbook/superhero film genre is. Avengers: Infinity War‘s success doesn’t make people not want to go see Wonder Woman 1984 when it comes out. In fact, it will likely get more people in the seats due to their growing fandom of superheroes. We can love both Aquaman and the Incredible Hulk!