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Elitism on another level: pie-facing movie directors because they aren’t “worthy”?

I’ve just read this story at ANN and it really bothered me. Lately we’ve had all this talk about elitism in the anime community, but this one guy is on another level; for those who can’t be arsed to click the link, I’m talking about “Khyron Prime”; some one who, upon deciding that he hated the new Robotech movie (Shadow Cronicles), dragged himself up to the Anime Expo and threw a cream pie in the face of the movie’s director (Tommy Yune). Yune took it all in good humor and even posed for a few impromptu pictures but the obsessed fan was later slapped with a (deserved) life-long ban by the Expo committee. It gets worse when you read “Khyron Prime”‘s venom-filled blog entries that detail his adventures at the Expo; it’s fair to say he reads like Travis Bickle’s Robotech-lovin’ younger brother, a real case of social alienation.

We throw around words like elitism quite freely, but this guy is the real deal. Why do (some) anime fans feel like they are entitled to great anime, to the point where they feel personally slighted by something they don’t like?

Comments

Owen S says:

Short note of protest: that guy is to elitism as Osama bin Laden and Al-Qaeda are to Islam, so I feel somewhat slighted by your comparison.

That aside, can I say "lol nutjob"? I very well can. I feel that you’re entitled to your own opinion, be it elitism or whatnot, until it infringes on other people’s freedom (in any form). This Khyron Prime loony was doing all well and good till he infringed on Tommy Yune’s freedom to speak at Anime Expo without getting pied.

Of course, this subject of personal liberty is a touchy one indeed — on the internet at any rate — but I let my readers say anything they please, as long as they know I’ve got the freedom to say anything I want back at them. Cue name-calling, but deleting comments or locking a thread just because you don’t want to deal with what people have to say about your opinion is lame. I’d rather make fun of them, or mud-wrestle.

I digress, surely. Your point, that "(some) anime fans feel like they are entitled to great anime, to the point where they feel personally slighted by something they don’t like", has always seemed to me as evidence of improper primary socialisation. Primary socialisation here is a sociological theory explaining how your behavioural patterns are locked in two-fold; primary (parents) and secondary (peers).

The theory certainly explains a lot of why I had moronic, frightening people I had the unfortunate position of being acquainted with, that would get riled if you called them names, disagreed with something they said, or just decided to go against something they stood for (e.g. racism in my case).

One of them I had the further misfortune of knowing since childhood. Now, said person’s father is nice, but has this angry parenting thing and a streak of illogical action in him, from what I’ve noted of his behaviour. Basically, retarded angry dumb parent usually raises retarded, angry, dumb kid, and this is what I saw when I decided to call this guy an idiot for some minor petty incident where he was acting his shoe size.

Wouldn’t those opinion extremists, as I’ll call them, run along the same lines, surely? Those who think that an anime must or should be moulded to their wants, expectations, or appetites are plain irrational, period. Where do they get all manner of nonsense like this from? Surely, it wouldn’t be stretching it to say that it could be explained as the parents of said opinion extremists being failures. At least that’s how I see it.

That doesn’t mean they get off the hook though. I choose to take the re-education stance here; rather than leave those wretched things aside I’d rather beat them cold with a bat of Logic and a stick of Sarcasm until they "got it". But that’s just me.

Impz says:

I believe elitism tends to have a small but confused sense of superiority. In a wider form of elitism, he is probably one. However, it is often noted that elites (even in the negative connotation) are recognized by others as someone who is truly a top gun/opinion leader in the field and community he is in. Nevertheless, I can go on and on about how he is, or not. Yet, i rather end with this.

"Darn retards, they embarrass us"

Xerox says:

I’m sticking to my guns on this anime elitism issue. To quote Voltaire, "I wholly disapprove of what you say, but will defend to the death your right to say it."

However, this man is just an idiot. His actions did not solve anything, it, in fact, stirred up more unnecessary discontentment within the community. If he wanted to be a hero, he turned out more like a villain.

Still, the poor man is entitled to his opinion and I, albeit not to the death, will defend his right to voice his opinions. But, I will not defend pieing other people. That, frankly, is just wrong and out of order.

A statement on anime elitism in general: it’s because people take the whole "freedom of speech" thing too much for granted. They abuse it and use it as an excuse for everything. It’s slightly disturbing, but that’s what the country promises and delivers.

It’s just one big, rather pointless, argument over opinions, this elitism issue. It shouldn’t even be an issue! All fun and games until someone gets hurt (pied in this case) and then, well…and then.

Wait till Mr. Khyron Prime gets pied himself by one of his hated ‘shitty anime’ cosplayers. I’m sure that’ll, if not put him in his place, hit him hard enough to bruise his twenty-three year-old male, "I need stronger stories, more believable characters, and a level of intelligence" self righteous, ‘elitist’ ego.

bateszi says:

@Owen S: We are all, to some degree, a product of our up bringing. Our memories and experiences color our personalities and make us the people we are today. It’s pointless to speculate about that though because this is the internet and behind the screen-names we are all unknown quantities. It’s interesting to think about actually – the internet is the one place where you are judged on what you write; so your thoughts and your mind rather than simply where you come from and how you look. It’s a true leveler of the individual. I’m going off on a bit of a tangent here so I’ll stop before getting too philosophical. Whatever the reason, it’s fairly obvious this chap has a deficit of "common sense"; the quantity of morality that stops us from going out and doing crazy things.

Anyway, I wanted to contrast this with all the elitism and arguments that are being banded about the anime community at the moment. This guy is the ultimate form of that self-serving nature, so maybe it’s worth noting this case down for your description of elitism classes; after all, he even rewrote the script of the Robotech movie to make it "better".

@Impz: Haha, your last line aptly sums it up! I’m not sure about your definition of elitism though – I don’t think it depends on others, you don’t have to be a leader of a community or whatever, it’s just an individual decision that makes you feel superior to another person. It’s just ten time worse when an elitist builds an army of sheep to shout down any dissenters.

@Xerox: Yup, it’s freedom of speech taken way over the line. It concerns me because it’s a rather stark warning to anime fans who take their hobby a little too seriously. It’s fine to be pissed off if you hated a movie, but to take almost as a personal insult shows a worrying level of obsession. I wonder if he even cares about the people who DID like the movie!

DrmChsr0 says:

Pie? Geez, you people are silly. Pie is delicious.

And the lifelong ban? Weak. I would have subopena’d his ass twice for assault and battery (or in this case, buttery) if I couldn’t pay people to off him. Personally, I would have offed him.

Elitism in animé? It’s just a bunch of people who think they are superior but are in fact, completely inferior than even your average human being. See: Harutards.

I would know what I’m talking about. I live in a community full of them. A whole floogin’ community full of them. They are some of the worst examples of humanity, and I would be a lot happier if they all died.

bateszi says:

You live in a community of Harutards? :) That would be hell.

Also, I would have chinned him myself, but a movie director has to be a little more dignified; one wrong move would ruin his career forever.

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