It’s interesting reading Rachel Kiley’s post about a specific LBD fan attacking her actions on tumblr and the fan thinking that Rachel should not break the fourth wall. Overall, I mostly agree with Rachel. I follow her on tumblr and twitter so I know that most of the negative comments that were linked were taken out of context. Rachel is a huge LBD fan that enjoys all aspects of the show. While it may seem like she is dismissive about Darcy, she really is just trying to highlight the areas of LBD that she directly works with (ie Lydia’s vlogs). We shouldn’t expect Rachel to have in depth opinions on story lines that she doesn’t work on. She’s more like one of the fans and less of a writer when it comes to things she’s not a big part of. I really appreciate that Rachel, Ashely, and Mary Kate are on tumblr and are willing to answer questions and have intelligent discussions.
However, as I said, I mostly agree with Rachel (80-90% agree) but not completely. While reading the complaints about various LBD people breaking the fourth wall, I found myself agreeing. I have had some minor issues with the some of character choices and casting choices. None of them are major issues, just little things that I would normally feel comfortable in ranting about online. However, after Mary Kate posted about reading Lydia/Mary Kate tags (and that some of the hurtful things people said hurt her feelings), I felt a bit uncomfortable. I felt censored, as if she or the other LBD cast/writers may be watching. Months ago, I wanted to post a blog about my thoughts on how all of the actors/actresses on LBD are very thin/incredible good shape and how the lack of diverse body types on LBD bothered me a bit. However, I didn’t post it because I didn’t want the actors to stumble across it and think that I was attacking them when I just wish that a few of the characters were originally cast to represent a diverse range of body shapes (I’ve been acting long enough to know that 75% of the time they’ll include a body type in casting calls to narrow down the field of applicants). At this point, I think that all of the actors that have been cast are all beautiful (beautiful in personality and acting, not just looks) and are perfect for their roles and I wouldn’t want anyone else. To me, I hold LBD on a level where I hold shows like Buffy or Greys Anatomy. Buffy made major strides in making it normal in a tv show to have main characters as LGBT and had actors of diverse body shapes. Grey’s Anatomy is well known for their culturally diverse cast and using “color-blind casting” (which is something that LBD has also done and one of the reasons why I LOVE this adaptation). What could have been an interesting discussion (about the lack of diverse body shapes) that I was formulating in my head, ended as soon as I saw Mary Kate’s post. I didn’t want to post anything that could potentially hurt her feelings. I highly respect her as an actress and knowing that she checks the tags made me change my mind.
So in the end, I agreed with most everything Rachel said in her post. But I also agreed with the upset LBD fan a tiny bit. We’re in complicated territory because fans are so used to being able to post without thinking about actors or writers reading their thoughts. As fans we have to decide what we find more important — the amazing interaction between writers & actors OR being able to be complete assholes when we rant about the actors/writers/choices/costumes/story lines/etc. In the end, I’ll pick the interaction with the actors and writers any day over ranting (and stick to more tastefully complaining than rants). I guess this post has also made me realize that I can say negative things (ie lack of diverse body types) but you have to do it tastefully where it doesn’t hurt any individuals and is more about creating discussion, not about attacking someone.
And yes, I’m going to tag the actors/writers. Not because I’m hoping that they’ll see this post but only because I know that other LBD fans track tags and may have their own opinion to add.
EDIT: An anon asked me what the original drama was specifically, so here’s a link to the post I made. Overall, you can get the gist of it from reading Rachel Kiley’s post.
EDIT: A post that I really like about how fans can feel uncomfortable or censor themselves when they know that the content creator may be tracking the tags and responding. Again, I don’t agree with everything (I agree with a lot of it) but overall it is a very intelligently written piece.
EDIT: A response from head writer and co-creator of LBD, Bernie Su. Who actually linked to my post that detailed the original drama.