Internet feeds…obsession grows

So I was just thinking today about the earlier discussion we had at someone’s blog, (I think it was MaryPickford’s blog) about how the Internet feeds into your obsessions and allows them to continue to last instead of burning out.

Sometimes it’s a positive or negative thing. I came back to Days of Our Lives last summer because I was curious to see SN and MB returning to the show after all this time. Though I always considered myself a fan, I don’t think I have thought of them in at least 5 or 6 years, maybe even longer. With watching a few cool clips on Soapnet, I experienced what can only be described as euphoria when I discovered some clips available online. When I say some…there wasn’t really a permanent repository yet. People uploaded the clips for a short time until the free hosting site expired and to get them back up you would have to request them again.

Then came a wonderful user who began hosting them on her private site. Meanwhile, I discovered other sites that housed other clips. Finally, I discovered the official Steve & Kayla board. I began making friends. I also learned some psychological truths. I have for the last 2 years inexplicably loved the character of Sawyer on Lost. He was more than just your typical sexy con man but I could not put my finger why I was so instantly drawn to him. Then I realized after watching the early clips of S&K, “My God, he is the 21st century version of Steven Earl Johnson (well, with two eyes)”. Sadly, my affection for Kate is not nearly as strong and maybe it’s because she is no Kayla?

Actually, that’s a positive side to Internet feeding. I was able to satisfy myself with seeing old clips sometimes for the first time while being able to see I am not alone. There is a negative side though. A few seasons back I was really into CSI and the Internet burned me bad. Why? It gave me a reason to hope that a very unlikely (though reasonable and chemistry enriched) couple had a chance to burn brightly on that show. A show, which incidentally, is supposed to focus on the professional but not the private lives of the characters. It’s obvious I lost that battle and my enjoyment of CSI has been thus affected forever. I still watch, and sadly as if it’s a sickness within myself, I might actually find myself all excited over the possible pairing of Hodges and Wendy which could propel me into the same pattern of Internet feeding that disappointed me so much the first time.

I am so torn. On one hand, I feel better and happier for knowing my fellow friends in the SKork world (I so invented that word BTW!) and know even if the storyline goes completely south for us, we can keep each other happy by clips, music videos and fanfiction. On the other hand, if the Internet existed as such back in the eighties, I might have found some friends who initially preferred Jennifer with Emilio (there I admitted it! This is to make MP feel better about her own confession) over Jack. The Internet is both a blessing and a curse.

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11 thoughts on “Internet feeds…obsession grows

  1. Hee, Tripp, thank you, that does make me feel better. (Anyone who’s curious: Tripp is referring to my recent confession that I initially preferred Britta for Steve over Kayla! The shame of it!) The Emilio triangle went on for quite awhile, if I remember, and I think the show was leaving their options open. They used to use triangles in that way more back in the 80s.

    I don’t know how many fans come to message boards, so I don’t know how much of a difference it makes in viewership and “buzz.” I know it makes me a more critical viewer. And I think the obsession thing is a good point.

    OT–someone told me they were having problems posting comments on my blog. I tried it myself, though, and it worked fine. Do you mind coming and posting a “test” comment on my latest entry, and letting me know if it doesn’t work?

  2. Emilio? Emilio! Say that it is not true. No, no, no, no, no.

    On the actual point of your post, I agree with maryp that the whole internet thing makes me a more critical viewer too, but in a good way. I can still enjoy something even if no one else is, but I look at other elements with more interest.

  3. Zara: Sorry, I had a total crush on Billy Hufsy and then I had a huge problem with them redeeming Jack through Jennifer. Yes, I have seen the error of my ways. I was too ashamed to admit it before, but I met someone at the SKork board who has begun posting some early Jennifer/Emilo music videos so I know I am not alone! *stands proudly*

    Mary: Sometimes the akismet feature on WP will mark a poster as SPAM or pending. Oh, and FYI but your comments will come through but the email notification always get sent to my junk filter no matter what I do. I hate that!

  4. Tripp, thanks for the heads up re: akismet and spam.

    It’s funny how I dislike Emilio more in retrospect than I did at the time. (His look has not aged well, for one thing!) At the time I generally tried to like everyone who wasn’t a bad guy (and I liked some of the bad guys too). I hear people say now how much they disliked Melissa, for example. Like you said in your 1987 retrospective, Zara, it was funny how they chemistry-tested her with practically EVERYONE that year. But at the time I thought she was fine. I might have a passing thought like, “Oh, when someone doesn’t have a storyline they just give them an unrequited crush—that’s so obvious.” But that’s it.

    It all goes along with being a more critical viewer now.

  5. I love that the internet can provide a place where people from all over the country and the world can share their common interest(s). Whether it’s a sport, a tv show, a band . . . whatever. If you look hard enough you can probably find a message board dedicated to the subject. It makes the world seem a lot smaller sometimes.

    The downside, in my opinion, of the internet is that it easily feeds the mob mentality. Back in high school and college when I watched Days sans internet, if I was ticked about a storyline, I might have one or two friends to discuss it with and usually they’d just laugh and tell me to get over it.

    Now, with internet message boards, it seems easy to generate a feeding frenzy over something negative. It’s like one person’s frustration and anger fuels anothers who fuels another, etc. And, since nobody has to talk face to face, it because easy for “conversations” to devolve into shouting matches.

    I think the good definitely outweighs the bad. Without the internet, I’d have never found the old S&K clips that now seem to dominate my life. I’d have never found a bunch of great people that share my fascination with Days and who can provide amazingly interesting and well thought analysis to the show. That’s the good stuff and that’s what I try to focus on.

  6. Mary: with the perspective of 20/20, I can’t believe I liked Emilio though I still have a soft spot for him (such as when he and Kayla were taken hostage of Senator “psycho” LOL) and I do think Billy Hufsy never tried to be more than he was…he recognized his place on the show and accepted it. I respect that.

    ESP: I know what you mean. I think there is a mob frenzy and I can easily become riled up by a message board posting (or even swayed by a TWoP recap). LOL. What does that say about me?

    But like you say, I will always appreciate the S&K clips here and on youtube. I can also download the Chick clicks that I find too and hopefully will begin seeing Jake & Paulina stuff from AW since Soapnet did the unthinkable and cancelled the show again!

  7. I think without the internet I used to assume that even if something wasn’t working for me, it was for most people. Adrienne and Justin got a little cheesy for me, though I started out liking them. But I just assumed it was a personal taste thing (which it is, but had the internet existed I’d find the ones who agreed with me and we’d talk about where the writers went wrong, etc.)

    I get swayed by negative comments too, Tripp. Either swayed to agree, or feel defensive and riled up. Especially when I was first getting into message, when I wasn’t used to the dynamics. I’ve gotten more accustomed to it now. And like esp said, the good outweighs the bad.

  8. Hey, Tripp, I have pretty much the entire Chick clip collection. I’ve been clipping them for myself since I got sucked into their twisted little story. I wish I had a big FTP site with lots of bandwidth–I’d put them up and leave them there for people to download. But I don’t, alas. But if you’re looking for any in particular, let me know and I can do the old Yousendit routine.

    I discovered the joys and pitfalls of the Internet in 1995, when I found the online X-Files fandom. It was a great experience, not without its downside, but it gave me the confidence (and know-how) to find my own niche in the Days fandom when I returned to the show last summer.

    I made an online friend in 1996 who is still my dear friend today, even though we live in distant states from each other. The beauty of the Internet is that it opens the world for you, in terms of friendship and intellectual interaction. You’re not limited to your locality or even your own country. And I love that the answer to almost anything is right at your fingertips.

    I think where people get in trouble is not treating the Internet much as you might treat, say, a local pub. You can go there, keep your head and have a great time. Meet new friends, play some games, talk for hours—it’s wonderful. But you can go to that same pub, make stupid choices and end up in a real bind. It’s all a matter of being careful and being smart about how you interact with others online.

  9. UGH!!!!!!!! Paula did you see the latest Chick spoiler? Huh?

    Sigh.

    Ok, so I do have some episodes I need for chick. Really one in particular, I will email you.

    I think your analogy about Internet with pub is a good one. I love the Internet and do think Mary is right there is more good than bad but when it gets bad, it’s not healthy. :0

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