Students bond over shared obsessions

Despite  a workload that included AP English III and Theater Arts, sophomore Jason Q. still had time to get excited when his friend sent him the link for a preview of the new season of Supernatural.

“I literally jumped up and started dancing,” he said. “I was so giddy; I was ecstatic.”

Not just for laughs: Sophomore Julie N. is a regular viewer of Glee and labels herself a “Gleek.” “The characters themselves; they have so many flaws, which is why they’re relatable to us,” Julie said. Photo by Nadia Zulfa

Jason is not the only one with a TV show obsession; sophomore Julie N. considers herself a “Gleek” (someone who is obsessed with Glee), and even admits to having her own “crazed fan” moments.

“Season 2, when the cast did a Ke$ha number, and Brittany threw up, I laughed so much,” she said. “And people you’d never expected to get giddy with stoic expressions — they squeal, they fangirl.”

The reason for all this Glee obsession? Julie thinks it’s because people can relate to the show.

“[Glee is addicting] because of the characters themselves; they have so many flaws, which is why they’re relatable to us,” she said. “Glee made me more secure about my individuality. Ryan Murphy (one of the creators of Glee) is a gay man, so I think [Glee] is to make society more open about gay rights.”

Whether it’s relatable or not, major TV shows, like Glee and Supernatural, seem to be largely affecting the way people think, behave, and speak—sometimes even subconsciously. Through constant blogging, posting on Facebook, and gossip, it’s no surprise that TV show fan bases play a large role in student life.

“People have done amazing art work on Tumblr,” Jason said. “In a way I re-blog [the episodes] on Tumblr [and] I live-tweet but I try to keep it more ambiguous to not spoil it.”

Julie also thinks the media has a great impact on society because of overexposure.

“Since we’re overexposed to those things we tend to morph ourselves into ‘Hollywood perfect models’ and lose our originality,” Julie said. “[The media]  keeps [people] dumb overexposed to drama, scandals–we need to focus on politics and education. We’re the voices of our generation, if something’s wrong, we need to speak up.”

 Other than getting over-excited and re-blogging season previews of Supernatural, Jason feels like he’s learned a lot from his TV show obsession.

Supernatural incorporates a lot of mythology and stuff you can Google, and controversial topics like God, angels, Heaven, and Hell,” he said. “I definitely know more than I did before I started watching it; it gave me more insight on ‘supernatural’ creatures.”

Jason believes that Supernatural is what brings all kinds of different people together in communion.

Supernatural helps me connect with some of my friends,” Jason said. “It’s such a small fandom [and] it makes people gather and we connect as a community.”

Senior Nadia O. has a taste for drama as she tunes into The Vampire Diaries every week, and she also thinks the show has taught her a lot of life’s lessons.

“Life is hard,” she said, “you’re always going to have decisions to make that are difficult and you’re going to have to choose between taking the easy way out or taking the hard road which most of the time leads you to glory…And also all the drama—it’s intense and that’s what life is all about.”

Nadia thinks that society heavily relies on TV shows because people can feel sympathy towards them, but on the other hand, society is also missing out on traditional art.

“Television shows are people’ s ideas; it’s their creative side running wild…and they have great shows that actually deal with real life situations that people can relate to,” she said. “[But] people are so into new technology and television and movies that they forget our ancestral ways; [back then] they used to watch plays, paint, draw, and do something so much bigger than all of this TV.

“I think we are losing something really great because art has been around for a long time and has inspired so many people, and if people wouldn’t push it aside, they could be really great too.”