Broken Base / Web Media

Simply put: If it's popular and has an associated message board, you're bound to stumble upon fan wars at one point or another.


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    Webcomics 
  • Achewood, which began as a very patchy set of one-shots elevated by the Lie Bot, what is the saddest thing strips, and developed into a subtle, clever strip with several deep interesting characters OR Achewood, which began as a daring and hilarious absurdest web comic, and got "ruined FOREVER!" when Onstad sold out and started having continuing storylines and jokes that made sense.
    • Conversely, many feel follow the first interpretation but believe that the strip has become so surreal, stylistic and referential that it's begun to lost its grip on those deep, interesting characters.
    • There is also a divide over Onstad's subscription service- some felt he had the right to monetize and charge money for premium comic content, while others felt it was a slap in the fact to have to pay for what used to be free. The punch came when Roast Beef's wedding was made subscriber-exclusive whiel the free daily readers only got a single comic of random preview panels.
  • Collar 6: Should the world be complete fantasy, or should the characters analyze how dysfunctional their relationships are.
  • Dominic Deegan. Whether it's the death and perceived vilification of Siegfried, the Super Greg arc, accusations of Mary Sue, The Chosen One, Jumping the Shark, and Unfortunate Implications being flung about, the Unpleasable Fanbase nitpicking everything out of spite (or because it's fun), or the forums dissolving into Deadpan Snarkers, Hatedom, and cries of "Ruined Forever" and "They Changed It, Now It Sucks", it's a wonder the fandom hasn't imploded by now. Since there are indeed still fans who love the comic as much as ever, are willing to forgive Mookie his mistakes, or who simply don't see them as mistakes because of their Willing Suspension of Disbelief. They're simply less vocal, it seems. Perhaps they fear FanHaters.
    • Ironically, the LiveJournal fans, which are far kinder, appear to average between three and four new topics a month, while the Keen Spot forum (the most vocal hatedom) has an active community and posts a thread for every new comic strip. It was debated whether Mookie was hanging a lampshade on his fans with Gregory Deegan's line at the end of this strip.
  • Khaos Komix. Fan reactions to a certain page in Jamie's story have been... spirited.
    • For context, prior to the 07 October revision, page 83 featured Charlie performing a sexual act on Jamie against his explicit consent, and Jamie dis-associating so as to make the experience pass more quickly. Although the arguments surrounding Charlie's actions against Jamie had many, MANY intricate and painful facets, the biggest and/or loudest camps were divided primarily between A: Those who felt that Tab's choice to make Charlie commit an act of sexual violence played dangerously into a larger trans-phobic cultural narrative, and B: those who either saw Charlie's actions as —if not forgivable— comprehensible given her extensive back story, or who focused on other things like the fact that it honestly portrayed a man as being susceptible to sexual abuse, in spite of a number cultural assumptions to the contrary. There was a LOT more to it than just that, but better to be brief and Let Other Articles With Better Writers give you an idea of some of the complexities involved. The original massive and contentious comment thread has since been taken down, though Tab has said that he is keeping a copy for posterity.
  • Looking for Group when it was finally confirmed that Cale and Benny are romantically involved, some fans responded with great wailing and gnashing of teeth and promises to never read the comic again, while others were jumping for joy.
  • There's the base of Megatokyo arguments, of Old Story (with Caston) Vs. New Story (Fred by himself), which then fractions into the characters themselves, all (literally, even minor, minor, minor characters) of whom no one can decide as to how they're portrayed.
  • The Order of the Stick, over whether or not the series has become better or worse since it became subjected to Cerebus Syndrome.
    • Also whether or not Vaarsuvius' "Familicide" spell and Haley's murder of Crystal were justifiable I Did What I Had to Do moments or indefensible crossings of the Moral Event Horizon.
    • Miko fans vs. Miko haters.
  • Homestuck's fanbase argues about everything. And we do mean everything, listing all the points of contention would take up most of this page. It's gotten to the point where a former mod had himself permabanned from the forums.
    • Of particular note is the debate over Vriska, a debate that had gas tossed on it when she died, and even more when she was resurrected.
  • SinFest started its path towards the broken base around 10/2011 with the arrival of Xanthe Justice and her Sisterhood arc. Is now a civil war.
  • Vampire Cheerleaders fanbase was divided between those who favored the PMS crew and the comic's Facebook community, who favored the cheerleaders. The second group accounted for the larger part of the fandom. So when the "Vampire Cheerleaders Must Die!" arc cast Lori and her coven as villains, they dropped the comic; causing it to lose much of its ad revenue and resulted in the comic ending prematurely, due to Vol.4 being cut.

    Web Original 
  • Is Kevin from Welcome to Night Vale an adorable tragic traumatized slightly-psychopathic cutie-pie who just needs a hug and a friend and some help decorating, or is he a terrifying monster who's trying to destroy everything Cecil holds dear? Or is he both? It depends on who you ask, and the mixed responses can be quite amusing.
  • Episode Three of "Alice Isn't Dead" begins with a trigger warning, one that specifically states that someone gets attacked in the episode. Trigger warnings in work are a controversial topic already, but many fans found that this one in particular spoiled a potentially great Jump Scare. Others thought found that the warning was warranted by the content.
  • The presence of storylines in Video Review Shows. Some see them as a great way to see what else the reviewer is capable of, some find them generally entertaining, or don't see a problem with them. Others find that it makes it hard to take the review seriously, find them lacking, and point out how it can take time away from the actual substance they came to see. Some even would be fine with them if not for their prevalence and for the Follow the Leader tendencies from That Guy with the Glasses.
  • The Spoony One's departure from TGWTG practically shattered the base. Did Spoony quit or get himself fired? Did he reveal himself to be a sexist, petulant asshole who couldn't get that he crossed the line with his joke to JesuOtaku, or was he the victim of the collaboration of Allison Pregler aka Lupa and Lord Kat, who got involved with something that was none of their business? The fact that Spoony later admitted to his own psychological issues and finally getting the proper treatment for them may have quelled the online war between the Broken Base - somewhat.
  • The Mondo Media Youtube Channel deals with a lot of this. On one side of the subscribers, who have the people only subscribing for Happy Tree Friends and Dick Figures, and anytime Mondo uploads a new series or episode of that new series, they will comment asking for more Happy Tree Friends or Dick Figures, while the other side appreciates the newer shows and will tell the other fandom to shut up.
  • Speaking of Happy Tree Friends...
    • The "Breaking Wind" episode. Is the episode genuinely funny or extremely abysmal due to the use of a fart joke? Is the inclusion of a Twilight parody (the book that Splendid is reading) a good mockery of the book/film or massively implying that the creators are actually interested in Twilight? It doesn't help that it has similarity to Craig Moss's film that shares the same name as the episode, as both rely on Toilet Humor and gives a Take That to Twilight, which are both criticized by viewers.
    • Truffles' Video Bomb Competition. Is this the sign that the creators have finally opened up to adding fan characters in an upcoming episode (albeit only one-time cameo like Truffles himself), allowing the fans to finally see them in the official HTF style, or does this actually mean that Mondo is running out of ideas yet again? As mentioned before, to be fair, the winning character only ends up having a cameo appearance, while a few others that didn't end up in digital trading cards for everyone to see (only in the first event, though), but this still doesn't change the fact that there are many fans who are against this event.
      • For that matter, the fact that the voting is based on the number of Facebook "likes" pretty much stirred up the fanbase, as not everyone uses Facebook. The less "social" ones (hurts even more if the character is very well-made) end up very unlikely to reach more than single-digit likes.
      • Really Good Unicornius joining the event. To explain: Unicornius is an intentionally poorly-drawn unicorn made by Oliver Age 24, who also has a channel on Mondo focusing on "How to Draw" various characters from well-known franchises in the same ugly style. There were many problems caused by this single character: 1. It's made by a person who is also part of Mondo, meaning that he could pretty much take advantage of the Facebook likes due to already gaining exposure from his videos. 2. It managed to stay in the first place for a long time because of the previous problem, meaning that it's meaningless for the HTF fans to join in (until the HTF crew balanced things out by also letting the second place to be included). 3. The fans are worried that MLP ended up spreading to their beloved show, thanks to Unicornius being, well, a "magical" unicorn. A few HTF fans, however, don't mind seeing the unicorn joining in, both for being a "troll"-ish submission and for having a Non-Standard Character Design, hoping to see him getting the "HTF style" treatment... but the latter didn't happen, he kept his badly-drawn look and sloppy animation, causing more outburst (even more so after seeing Tricksy (who placed second), who actually looks like he belongs in the show, a few scenes earlier).
    • The Love Bite short "On My Mind", especially for the shippers. It got to the point when its storyboard was first revealed, one fan was disillusioned enough to think that Giggles is Flaky with a bow, and when the short was finally released, the same fan probably thought "Flippy killed Giggles because Flaky is still his one true love".
    • The infamous hiatus period soon after "See You Later, Elevator" was released. The Schedule Slip itself actually happened since 2010 (or probably much earlier), when there were only 3 episodes released that year, with one of them featuring new characters. Year 2011 got a lot of flak from the HTF fans for the (formerly unseen on the website) HTF Break shorts which mostly end with "Happy Tree Friends is dead!". The Broken Base part of this issue: There are some fans (especially former fans) who thought that the show needs to finally end because they're tired of it and the show suffering from Seasonal Rot, while other fans would like the show to continue, especially to expand more of Lammy and Mr. Pickels' character, as they only appeared in one episode that time. It even hurts that the Break "Happy New Year" (also an old HTF Break never seen before on the website) promised more new content yet the same year only provides one new, proper episode (and it's a Christmas special).
    • Related to the above matter, the special "comeback" episode itself. "Clause for Concern" is the only proper episode released in 2011 to begin the end of the show's temporary hiatus. Fans are glad to see the show finally coming back, but the Bait and Switch-y nature of the episode, which makes the episode pretty much "bloodless" except for The Stinger, managed to stir up the fanbase once again. It doesn't help that the only death happening there seems to be rather uninspired. On the other hand, most former fans are not happy with the announcement of the episode, preferring the show to stay "dead".
    • Deadeye Derby being iOS-only. Not everyone has an iPhone/iPad, and the fact that there's no announcement for other smartphone platform ports pretty much screws the poor fans over. It doesn't help that it, like Slap Happy (also iOS-only), cannot be played on the web.
    • A minor one: FatKat's appearance in the HTF Break short "Take Your Seat". Due to his appearance being nearly similar to a typical fan character (doesn't help that part of his head and a little bit of his shirt are the only parts visible), most fans (and former fans) call Mondo out for stealing the character and flame the creator of the supposedly-similar character for having the character featured, while other fans see him as an Ensemble Darkhorse. Others mostly don't care, because the arguing fans are in the wrong anyway (FatKat is the mascot of an animation studio).
    • The BlurB! episodes. Some fans like the humor and references provided by the captions, especially when the caption goes into Lampshade Hanging regarding the show's/the "BlurB"-ed episode's nature. Others see them as pointless filler and are not worth watching at all.
    • Vote or Die, an event where fans got to vote for a new HTF character (in this case, between Lammy and Mr. Pickels versus Truffles). It was at first, an April Fools' joke (as shown in the "fake" results where Lumpy "won" instead), only during a later date, the voting results turned out to be true, with Lammy and Mr. Pickels winning. There are issues with this: 1. The winning duo became Base Breaking Characters. 2. Even before the voting was done, some fans would rather have all three to join in the show instead of having one of them kicked out and became The Cameo. 3. Lastly, there are few fans who would rather keep the Vote or Die event as a proper April Fools' joke, and usually pretend that the three characters never exist in the show.
    • In general, the show's community is divided into several groups: Regular fans who enjoy the show for what it is, fans who consider everything related to the show and/or its fanbase as Serious Business, fans who are more interested in character relationships than the show's actual premise, fans who prefer grimdark fanworks of the show instead of black comedy ones (this explains the difficulty in finding the latter fanworks), fans who are more interested in creating fan characters (Sturgeon's Law is in full effect here; and the same can be said to fans who like crossovers), fans who only prefer the bloodless side of the show, and the so-called "former fans" (may overlap with trolls). The last of these is in quotation marks because unlike the other former fans that simply moved on and occasionally remember a bit about the show but simply treat it as one of their old interests, the other "former fans" either: 1) Have a huge pride of not liking the show anymore and usually being a jerk to his/her friends who are still interested (the equivalent would be "avoiding the show like a plague"). 2) They take advantage from knowing the show to search for (mostly) clueless fans to be ridiculed, mock the show and its fanbase, and make parody fanart that are usually based on the first two objectives mentioned before, usually to garner as much Internet Backdraft as possible.
  • The character approval process used in the Global Guardians PBEM Universe created this effect among the players. Specifically, every proposed character was examined with a fine tooth comb, the maths were run and rerun, and everything was compared to the character's central concept and the standards of the setting as a whole. Unacceptable characters were rejected, or heavily modified. Some players found this refreshing and liked the process, while others found it infuriating and hated it. There was no middle ground.
    • On a similar token, Survival of the Fittest v5 has become somewhat more stringent and much less personal with its character evaluation process than previous versions. A fair few veterans have left because they don't like the change of atmosphere.
  • Go into any well-frequented NationStates IRC room or forum and ask what the real point of the game is. Then stand way back. The NS page says there are two ways to play it, but it's more like seven. Fortunately for the fanbase, each group mostly keeps to themselves and tries to keep the others at arm's length.
  • BikdipOnABus's fans either love or hate his new girlfriend being in his videos.
  • The Slender Man Mythos, due to the Running the Asylum nature of the mythos, is almost this by definition. Since Victor Surge, the man who posted the first images of the Slender Man, has stepped back to let fans run things, no one but Surge can claim to be the original creator and there's an unwritten "everything is canon" rule. Fans are divided on almost every aspect. Some consider Marble Hornets, Tribe Twelve, and Everyman HYBRID the only series worth watching, many say that only one of the three is good, and some fans consider "Surgism" the only way to go. Fans will debate over whether or not Marble Hornets (the most well-known series) has "sold out," there are very different opinions of crossovers of any sort, and of course, there's the eternal vlog vs. blog debate....
    • That's not even counting the in-fighting between various forums, facebook groups, and even drama that's not related to the story in specific AR Gs and series fanbases...
    • Slenderman himself has become one due to how ingrained in Creepypasta he's become and how much the original content is related to, or inspired by him. The Creepypasta wiki even banned the posting of any more content that even looked Slenderman related.
  • Neurotically Yours. The Reset Button, Art Shift, and combination of the secondary series's into Neurotically Yours. Some find it a fresh breath of air to the series, and a good idea. Others can't stand the new art style, and reset story, and have quit watching it altogether.
  • Game Grumps has a three-way battle amongst is fandom regarding their New Super Mario Bros. Wii playthrough. On the one hand, you've got fans who wish they would stop comparing it to older games and just enjoy it for what it is. On the other hand, you've got fans who say that Egoraptor and JonTron are entitled their opinion and that they can criticize the games if they want. On the third hand, you've got fans who wish they'd just start making jokes while playing again.
    • JonTron was a huge base breaker among members of the fandom. There were those who thought he was genuinely funny and entertaining, those who felt he was annoying and took away from Arin's entertainment value, and those who felt that he was funny on his own show but terrible in Game Grumps. And then Jon left and was replaced by Danny from Ninja Sex Party. Is he a good replacement for Jon or not? It doesn't help that people who complained about Jon being on the show then suddenly started complaining about him leaving. The controversy has died down a bit, however.
    • Steam Train. It doesn't help that it began around the same time that Danny became the new "Not-So-Grump". Some fans love it, some hate it, and some feel that it's good but should be its own separate channel.
    • Any time the Grumps have difficulty figuring out various aspects of a game. Fans are divided over whether or not they should just be having fun and enjoying the game at their own pace, or that they should learn to play the game "correctly" instead of wasting everyone's time. The Grumps themselves tend to lampshade this by joking about how they struggled during moments that were obvious in hindsight.
  • The RWBY fandom is split on what they want the show to be. One half wants it comedic, with emphasis on character interactions and the occasional really cool fight scene. The other wants it to be a brutal war story where characters battle for the fate of the world. Canon mostly leans towards the first interpretation, but there are enough hints of Cerebus Syndrome to justify the second.
    • There's still a lot of people who would've preferred Ruby's original characterization presented in the Red trailer, over her canon personality.
    • Many fans disliked how the second season started to bring in more romance to the plot. Including Blake and Sun's Ship Tease and the chain of Unrequited Love between Pyrrha, Jaune, Weiss, Neptune and Yang. They saw it as the series becoming a school romance akin of Shoujo manga.
    • Though a minor example, Jaune can be seen as this. Many fans believe he steals too much screentime from everybody on his team, and sometimes even team RWBY, and gets way more Character Development than other characters that fans wanted to see too, such as Pyrrha.
    • Once the series officially hit it's Cerebus Syndrome in Volume 3 there are now arguments about whether or not the series has gone too far in becoming Darker and Edgier. By the end of the volume three recurring characters are dead ( Penny, Torchwick and Pyrrha), Beacon Academy has been destroyed, Ozpin has disappeared, Yang's arm was sliced off and Team RWBY has been disbanded. For one half of the fandom these twists have caused Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy to occur, the other half however feel that these twists give a lot more weight to the story and have made said fans more invested in the series.
  • Mr Repzion made a video criticizing Ian Hecox and Anthony Padilla of Smosh, which some of his viewers agreed with, but a large percentage of his viewers also sided with Ian and Anthony.
  • Matthew Santoro:
    • Some fans prefer that the viewers be called "The Santoro Army", while others prefer "Santorians".
    • Some of Matt's fans have gotten into arguments over whether Matt should start a gaming channel.
  • The Cartoon Hero's "Top 10 Cartoons I Hate That Everyone Else Loves" video…well, with a title like that, you can guess what happened. It was talked up and down the Internet when it was posted in 2013, and split his fanbase. Some people thought it was a piece of crap that didn't explain his dislike for the cartoons on the list well enough and condemned it as "The Bart's Nightmare Let's Play" of his videos, while others enjoyed it and thought it was underrated. Two months after it was posted, a team of ten commentators got together and did a co-op commentary on the video. The Cartoon Hero would later admit that he didn't explain his reasons well enough and would give them reviews to go into more detail for why he didn't care for them, though so far the only cartoons on the list he has covered have been SpongeBob SquarePants and the first Naruto series.
  • Smash Bros Lawl developed this over time. Once the Post-Morgan Era started, many complained about the firing of the Brawl announcer, especially in regards to Morgan Freeman being the announcer, the detractors mainly finding the sentence mixing to not be as amusing as that of the Brawl announcer. The creator took notice, and revealed Will Smith as an announcer earlier than intended, in order to appease the fanbase.
  • pixiv:
    • One of the most divisive issues regarding artwork on pixiv is the practice of taking work that was submitted to pixiv and sharing it directly on other sites, particularly Twitter and Tumblr, or using art as avatars, all without asking the artist for permission. People who practice it argue that there's nothing wrong with it and that artists shouldn't upload their works if they don't want it spread around, and don't want to go through the process of asking the artist every time they want to share one of their works, especially when most pixiv artists are Japanese and only have a cursory knowledge of English. People against the practice, especially artists, consider this a breach of copyright and an act of disrespect towards the artists who worked hard on their pieces only to have it spread around beyond their control, and point out that artists have ended up in copyright-related trouble or quit out of disgust because of unauthorized art sharing.
    • Within the "sharing without permission is okay" camp, and especially amongst people who post erotic works / "hentai", there's the whole issue of posting the source work and/or artist alongside the art itself. Those who argue for it feel that it helps people discover more art from that source or artist, and that it's the least one can do for the artist if they're not willing to ask. Those who refuse to source their artwork feel that it's too much of a hassle and just want to spam hentai nonstop and that people who want to find the source so badly can just use tools like SauceNAO.
  • Youtuber Planet Dolan expanded from being a one man operation into a small company, and as such, Dolan chose to hire people to narrate videos as his time was otherwise occupied. This has led to no end of people bitching about how much they hate certain narrators, while others know that the scripts would be exactly the same even if Dolan was the narrator and understand why this was done.


http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/BrokenBase/WebMedia