This is the first post in a series about geek culture in South Africa.
I remember how my dad used to wake me up on Sunday mornings to watch X-Men, Batman and Biker Mice from Mars with him. And if he had to work on a Sunday, I had to give him a total episode recap when he got home. He’s one of the reasons why I love the characters from the comic book worlds and why, still to this day, I watch cartoons and animations. And you better believe that he still does too!
Besides the Pokémon era in South Africa (which I will discuss in another blog post), it seems that Marvel has become the growing and dominating culture here, even if is just mostly the movie fans.
It’s hard being a geek girl when everyone in my age group is interested in the movies only. It’s not really such a bad thing, it’s just that some people don’t get why you would also want to read the comics instead of just watching it on the magical picture box.
There is a sad reason for this notion though.
In the past, liking super heroes was seen as a sign of immaturity and after your adolescent years, it was expected of you to drop your childish love and move on to rugby and makeup. Thank Odin that I’m a stubborn little geek! I proudly stuck to my fandoms and I’m happy to report that I developed a lot more over the years.
Luckily after the Marvel movies started gracing the screens, there’s been a change in the geek culture of South Africa.
I’ve seen more comic book shops popping up and online stores started selling more geeky merchandise. Which makes this geek girl very happy, but also very broke! Unfortunately, I still need to order most of the figurines and statues from the United States as we have very limited variety here. I would also like to take the time to point out that clothing manufacturers needn’t only make superhero clothing for boys, aged 2 – 12. You can bet your Mjölnir that if I could fit my head into those tiny shirts, I would totally wear them. I can, however, fit my strangely small feet into age 12 socks! #IggleConfession
We might not have any world renowned conventions yet, but The Dark Carnival will be hosting their second Geek Fest in July. I’m hoping I can attend this year; unfortunately I had to miss it last year because of work. Any suggestions what to dress up as?
This weekend it was really amazing to see people of all ages, genders and sizes still queuing outside the cinema to see Avengers: The Age of Ultron, even if has been showing for a week already. Adults with their large popcorns talking about the first movie, kids dressed in the clothes I want making Hulk and Iron Man noises. A few kids even conned their parents into buying masks for them. Everyone’s eyes were filled with the excitement and wonder that only flawed superheroes can provide. One community ready to stand behind the fictional characters that feel real and mean so much more than just a movie script.
But the highlight of my geeky venture that day by far was when the entire cinema cheered when the Star Wars trailer showed.