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Misaimed Fandom / Newspaper Comics

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Examples of Misaimed Fandom for characters in Newspaper Comics.

  • Darby Conley's Get Fuzzy has attracted a moderately sized vegan high school and collegiate fanbase due to numerous appearances of PETA apparel. The catch? Bucky uses PETA as a shield for misbehaving under the guise of a revolt against whatever stick is up his butt during that installment, while Satchel is too dumb to know what they're really all about. This isn't official support from the organization - just many younger members without enough English courses under their belt to recognize the mockery of their hijinks. (And maybe a few who don't care.) Will usually occur in forums, blogs, journals, or news commentary box debates.
  • Bloom County:
    • Berke Breathed used to complain that, no matter how unsympathetic he made Steve Dallas seem in The Academia Waltz, many University of Texas students couldn't help but LOVE the character.
    • A similar thing happened with Bill the Cat. No matter what he did with the character, including making him a coke addict, a communist spy, an illegal arms dealer, and Jeanne Kirkpatrick's lover, people couldn't get enough of him. Breathed created Bill to be the anti-Garfield. Breathed must have failed to realize how many people in his audience hate Garfield, and were more than willing to buy Bill the Cat merchandise in protest. Breathed even joked in the late 1990s that there were probably still tribes in Africa using old hollowed-out Bill the Cat dolls as banana hammocks.
  • For that matter, Garfield himself. He acquired an immense fanbase in the late 1980s, including (arguably especially) even children. Being a devastatingly funny quipster definitely helps, as does the "fat and lazy and proud of it" shtick. But none of that changes the fact that Garfield is not only a textbook example of Cats Are Mean, but a card-carrying sociopath. (Don't believe it? Check out the strip in which Jon wonders if Garfield would risk his life to save his if the house ever caught on fire. Garfield had to leave the room briefly so he could laugh his head off.) That said, the character was much Lighter and Softer in this period, especially in the animated show and specials.
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  • An in-universe example in (possibly) Drabble: the main character notes that he only realized how very conservative his father is when they went to see Star Wars: A New Hope and Dad cheered for Darth Vader.
  • Many real-life human resource directors love Catbert from Dilbert, despite him being a (usually) exaggerated caricature of how thoughtless and self-serving most HR directors are. Nonetheless, there still have been some HR directors out there that have asked Scott Adams to make Catbert nicer, so as to make the portrayal more fair. Thankfully, Adams has not abided their wishes.
  • Fans of Calvin and Hobbes often debate whether Hobbes is "real" or "fake". Watterson carefully avoided making such a distinction and held that it defied the point of the strip.
    [Calvin & Hobbes] is more about the subjective nature of reality than it is about dolls coming to life...
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  • The creators of Alex have had letters from people who chose to become bankers and stockbrokers because of the comic. They find this baffling as the strip is primarily a satire about the soulless, materialistic, egocentric nature of the world of finance.

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