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Broken Base Cleanup

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Feb 27th 2017 at 1:22:13 PM

I think FireEmblemFates could probably use some trimming. The game itself is definitely a base-breaking entry in the series, but that section is HUGE.

Feb 27th 2017 at 3:40:31 PM

Zootopia looks like it could use a lot of work to weed out political soapboxing under the guise of Broken Base.

Especially since editors seem to be citing problems that only a fringe minority have issues about judging by the massively positive public and critical reception.

edited 27th Feb '17 3:41:07 PM by shoboni

Feb 28th 2017 at 5:43:24 AM

How controversial does something have to be to fit this trope? A lot of the examples I'm seeing are basically "some fans like this and some fans don't." When every single main character and half the episodes of a series are listed, something is wrong.

Madrugada Zzzzzzzzzz Relationship Status: In season
Feb 28th 2017 at 7:57:37 AM

Here's the criteria I use: if, listening to two fans who are on opposite sides of the break talk about the show, it seems, or almost seems, that they aren't talking about the same show, you've got a broken base and the point or points they differ on are the Base Breakers.

...if you don’t love you’re dead, and if you do, they’ll kill you for it.
Feb 28th 2017 at 8:31:06 AM

How do you determine if that is the case or if it's an instance of Fan Myopia with any given entry?

MagBas Mag Bas from In my house
Mar 23rd 2017 at 4:22:53 AM

{{27}}:here are the examples of Broken Base in Zootopia:

  • Broken Base:
    • The first trailer. Some found it hilarious, but others were turned down by the Lemony Narrator speaking in a very condescending tone, explaining what "anthropomorphic" means and presenting World of Funny Animals as a groundbreaking new concept, even though it is Older Than Print (see Reynard the Fox, for example). The later trailers restored many people's faith in the movie.
    • The decision to make the setting mammals-only. Some find it disappointing, since all the other worlds of funny animals that this film is trying to deconstruct included bird and reptile characters, and excluding them makes this film feel unfaithful. They also point out that the anti-prejudice message could've worked just as well, if not been even stronger, had non-mammals been included. Others point out that the Fantastic Racism in this film is severe enough with the wide variety of mammals, and including non-mammals would make it even more confusing.
    • The Hidden Villain. While some audiences like the message that this conveys (you can be oppressed and be racist yourself), others feel the character is barely memorable/intimidating, that the plot-twist villain cliche is getting old and that Disney should stop using it for now, especially since this is the fourth time in a row that they've done it. There's also a third group who agrees that the plot-twist villain is getting old, but feels that it is justified in this particular film as crime stories usually have a surprise villain.
    • The racism metaphor. While some felt it was nicely handled, others felt it was too anviliciously in-your-face about it. And still others felt the examination of racism and prejudice didn't quite go far enough, failing to take "modern definitions" of racism into account by presenting racism and prejudice as existing on an equal playing field.
    • The fact that the movie paints police in a good light. Some consider it a good moral in that it teaches that there are good police officers, while others believe that such a lesson is risky and distastefully-timed because the movie came out in an era where real life Police Brutality is an extremely visible issue.
    • While he's mostly an Ensemble Darkhorse, some thought that giving Finnick an extremely deep voice was a bit overkill while others found it hilarious.
    • Believe it or not, while most parents believe this film is good for kids and have enjoyed it alongside them, there is a very vocal group of parents who thoughts this movie was too scary for their kids. Though it probably didn't help that, while the movie was pretty lighthearted overall, it was slightly Darker and Edgier than Frozen or Tangled.
    • The movie is ambiguous as to the nature of Nick and Judy's relationship at the end of the movie. This has led to the fandom being divided into a larger faction that prefers to think of them as a couple, and a smaller faction that prefer to see them as Platonic Life Partners. Not even the creators and actors of the film themselves can agree on whether the relationship is platonic or romantic.
    • As more and more footage of the Darker and Edgier original version is released (in which Zootopia was a dystopian Crapsack World and the predators were forced to wear shock collars), the fandom is divided on it. Some agree with the studio's stance that it was far too bleak and unrelatable, and that changing it was the best thing that could have happened to this movie. Others take a neutral stance — it was too dark to succeed, but would have been great in another medium, such as a graphic novel. And still others believe that it would have been far more engaging and relevant to current events than the final product, where the brokenness of the system is rather downplayed.
    • Some fans think Shakira's "Try Everything" is just as good as the film itself while others feel it's one of the weaker points of the movie. On that point, people are also somewhat divided over the Dance Party Ending. Some thought it was fun while others thought it was cliche and generic.

Out of note, i am reading the description of Broken Base, and a bit in the last paragraph says that this overlaps with Vocal Minority. This bit is correct?

edited 23rd Mar '17 4:24:09 AM by MagBas

chasemaddigan I'm Sad Frogerson.
I'm Sad Frogerson.
Mar 27th 2017 at 4:46:44 PM

I noticed that Spider-Man: Homecoming has its own Broken Base page. I find this suspect because the movie isn't even out, and yet it already has 12 entries on it. Most of the entries are about things like casting decisions, costume changes, and creative liberties that have been taken. I just think its a little premature to make a separate page for Broken Base examples when the movie is still four months away. Any thoughts?

nrjxll Relationship Status: Not war
Mar 27th 2017 at 4:51:01 PM

I've been wondering whether the troper population is really collectively capable of handling something like Broken Base, and this isn't making me more comfortable about it.

MagBas Mag Bas from In my house
Apr 2nd 2017 at 10:49:00 AM

Any decision about the Zootopia examples or the Spider Man example?

Apr 10th 2017 at 5:29:46 PM

Similarly to the above [up][up][up], Thor: Ragnarok now has it's own Broken Base page despite the film not coming out til November.

chasemaddigan I'm Sad Frogerson.
I'm Sad Frogerson.
Apr 10th 2017 at 5:34:59 PM

EDIT: [nja] with Thor: Ragnarok.

edited 10th Apr '17 5:35:53 PM by chasemaddigan

Apr 25th 2017 at 7:47:38 AM

So what is the difference between a Broken Base and an Unpleasable Fanbase and why were the examples for the latter cut and not the former?

dragonfire5000 from Where gods fear to tread
Apr 25th 2017 at 12:00:13 PM

[up]My understanding of the two tropes is that Unpleasable Fanbase refers to the idea that the fanbase is never unanimously satisfied; there will always be something for someone in the fanbase to complain about.

Broken Base is supposed to refer to something so divisive that there really is no middle ground in the fanbase; you either love it or hate it. Though it currently seems to have devolved into just "Something the fanbase disagrees about."

Karxrida Synchro Star from The Extra Deck Relationship Status: I LOVE THIS DOCTOR!
Synchro Star
Apr 25th 2017 at 12:57:39 PM

Unpleasable Fanbase is also kind of Flame Bait-y.

If a tree falls in the forest and nobody remembers it, who else will you have ice cream with?
Apr 26th 2017 at 5:12:30 PM

So I am a bit of an old timer here and I remember what examples Unpleasable Fanbase had and what they were like. So I think the main problem is after the examples were cut, people just jumped ship to Broken Base and turned it into Unpleasable Fanbase 2.0 where every issue no matter how minor, is valid.

So it seems that Broken Base has undergone severe Trope Decay. So I propose we could update the page with a stricter definition, maybe create an Analysis page that does a compare and contrast with other tropes and explains what a Broken Base is and when an example is valid and when it isn't. And when we have a better definition, we ruthlessly enforce it.


edited 26th Apr '17 5:16:18 PM by DocJamore

nrjxll Relationship Status: Not war
Apr 26th 2017 at 8:45:31 PM

The definition could use a bit of touching up, maybe, but I honestly think the real problem has nothing to do with it - it's the inability of the troper body in aggregate to handle pages like this without turning them into complaining magnets. I'm not sure any amount of reworking can fix that, only aggressive and constant cleanup.

May 16th 2017 at 1:33:42 PM

Circling back around to this, I have to agree that Broken Base's trope description is rambly and vague. It starts off well enough— "a civil war among fans of a particular series"— but then almost immediately muddies the waters— "ranging from simple division over a single issue to full-on nerd balkanization."

What? "A simple division over a single issue" doesn't sound particularly tropeworthy, and "full-on nerd balkanization" is an evocative turn of phrase but not exactly what I'd call precise.

The rest of the description is even worse, spending an inordinate amount of time yakking about different issues that can cause a Broken Base and the sorts of accusations that might be thrown around by different sides, but very little actually defining the term.

A clearer, more streamlined and more specific trope description might look something like this: Sandbox.Broken Base.

The necessary criteria here are:

  • A sustained conflict: short-term conflicts that are quickly forgotten don't count.
  • An exceptionally vicious conflict: a simple disagreement where the various factions have little problem co-existing doesn't count.
  • Two or more large, vocal, and entrenched factions: a tiny Vocal Minority that won't shut up about their pet peeve but is vastly outnumbered by more reasonable fans doesn't count. Nor does a silent majority that likes what they like (or hates what they hate) but doesn't make a big deal about it.
  • Little to no middle ground: Cases in which the vast majority of the fandom just plain doesn't care too much about the disagreements of a few fringe elements don't count.


edited 16th May '17 1:34:18 PM by HighCrate

AnotherDuck No, the other one. from Stockholm Relationship Status: In season
No, the other one.
May 16th 2017 at 2:34:38 PM

I thought I'd come with something constructive, but it's basically just Me Too!. It's something that breaks the fanbase in two (or more) fighting groups. That by itself excludes temporary arguments, since that means the fanbase isn't broken, and smaller arguments aren't breaking it either. It's also about the entire fanbase, rather than splinter sections or where a large part just doesn't care.

For the description, I like the sandbox. I think it's necessary to cut out all the maybes and any fodder for shoehorning lesser conflicts.

Check out my fanfiction!
Madrugada Zzzzzzzzzz Relationship Status: In season
May 16th 2017 at 5:28:49 PM

The sandbox is very good. [awesome]I'd add the bulleted criteria to it, the way you have them listed here.

...if you don’t love you’re dead, and if you do, they’ll kill you for it.
Karxrida Synchro Star from The Extra Deck Relationship Status: I LOVE THIS DOCTOR!
Synchro Star
May 16th 2017 at 8:07:48 PM

I'd rather just salt the earth, but the sandbox works too.

If a tree falls in the forest and nobody remembers it, who else will you have ice cream with?
May 17th 2017 at 12:47:01 PM

Made the switch. Now that there are more clearly defined criteria in place, we can start cleaning the example subpages in earnest.

Edit: My God. Now I remember why I made a cursory pass through Anime & Manga and then never circled back around to this. Parsing the sheer amount of Fan Myopia involved in these entries is mind-numbing. I don't think it's going to be possible to go through these pages entry-by-entry and seek consensus for each cut like I've done in previous cleanup projects I've been involved in; instead, I'm going to go with a "misuse until proven otherwise" philosophy and pick out the handful of entries that seem like they might fit the criteria and pull those out for discussion.

Anyone who wants to double-check my work and make sure I'm not cutting anything that deserves to stay is welcome to do so, and God have mercy on your soul, because these example subpages are a mess.

Starting with the BrokenBase.Dangan Ronpa 3: there are only two entries on the entire subpage that stand out to me as even possibly valid:

  • The handling of Hinata's character arc and especially his romance with Nanami has become extremely polarizing among fans. Either it grants a fuller context to his backstory and makes the circumstances more tragic, or it's a massive Romantic Plot Tumor that reduces his entire character motivation to wanting to impress his girlfriend.
  • Was the method of brainwashing used too realistic or not realistic enough? (Hint: there is no middle ground.) Some argue that it's fine and good because Makoto Naegi mentions brainwashing, but others point out that Naegi also admitted to not knowing about how they fell into despair and most likely meant it metaphorically. Although Dangan Ronpa by itself does not always rely on being realistic.

These at least describe two factions in more-or-less neutral, non-complainy language and establish or at least hint at the "exceptionally vicious" and "no middle ground" criteria. They don't really establish "sustained" though, and both are poorly-written and require too much fandom knowledge for context, so I'm inclined to say "cutlist the whole page and rely on Wiki Magic to re-add any legit examples that may have been there."

edited 17th May '17 1:31:56 PM by HighCrate

Karxrida Synchro Star from The Extra Deck Relationship Status: I LOVE THIS DOCTOR!
Synchro Star
May 17th 2017 at 2:12:37 PM

These entries in YMMV.Fire Emblem Heroes look extremely suspect. They're based off of VA choices that I doubt anybody is actually arguing over to a huge extent.

  • Broken Base:
    • The fact that Yuri Lowenthal voices a number of characters, providing the voices for Marth, Merric, and Eliwood thus far. note  Some are fine with it as it would give him a chance to expand his vocal range, while others think he's being overused.
    • Fans are somewhat divided over Wendee Lee's voice for Lyn. Some fans like her more youthful voice for Lyn, while others prefer the Contralto of Danger Lani Minella provided in Super Smash Bros.
    • Casting Bryce Papenbrook and Junji Majima as Karel has proven to be very controversial. Some fans like the fact that Bryce and Junji gave Karel a voice that is much deeper than their usual Tenor Boy voices and is a great example of Playing Against Type, but as for others they think that both voices don't fit Karel's character as someone who is nicknamed the "Sword Demon" since the Karel in Fire Emblem Heroes is the Blazing Blade incarnation and would have preferred someone with a deeper voice like Matthew Mercer or Toshiyuki Morikawa to voice him instead.
    • Greg Chun fans vs Jason Adkins fans for who voiced Ike better. Some fans like that Greg gave Ike a stronger performance and a more fitting voice for his younger Path of Radiance incarnation, while others say they aren't sure if his voice will suit the older Radiant Dawn Ike or miss the voice Jason Adkins gave Ike in his previous appearances.

If a tree falls in the forest and nobody remembers it, who else will you have ice cream with?
May 17th 2017 at 2:23:56 PM


  • Yuri: I view any entry that describes one side as "fine" with whatever the issue is to be highly suspect. What we're looking for is a clear-cut, mutually acrimonious civil war. Cut.
  • Wendee Lee: Ditto with the Weasel Words "somewhat divided." Somewhat divided ain't divided enough. Cut.
  • Karel: This is better than the previous two, but still doesn't properly establish it as a sustained, acrimonious conflict that divides the fandom as opposed to something where different people have different preferences but mostly get along just fine. Cut.
  • Ike: I'm suspicious of use of the future tense here. Trepidation about what might happen doesn't make a good case for the conflict being sustained. Cut.

edited 17th May '17 2:24:35 PM by HighCrate

May 17th 2017 at 2:36:35 PM

Going through BrokenBase.Sailor Moon Crystal, these are the entries that might be rehabilitated; the others strike me as easy cuts:

  • The designs for Crystal have fans divided: some hate the Noodle People character designs, while others love them for being artistically Truer to the Text. The only person involved with the original series in any capacity to speak on this has been John Stocker, who handled portions of the original 90s English dub and felt the skinny designs made them look spider-like and unrealistic. Notably, none of the actual creators or animators from the original show have said anything on it.

I do remember the art being pretty Love It or Hate It and divisive when the show was first making the rounds; unfortunately the example as written doesn't do a good job of establishing full context, devolving into natter about what the creators think instead of talking about the fandom. I don't know enough about the fandom to either fix it or declare it misuse, but I'm putting it here in case someone else does.

  • Jadeite, Nephrite, and Zoisite's survival past the points of their respective manga deaths, as well as the indications of expanded roles for the Shitennou, have touched off what may be the largest split yet. Half the show's fans are excited about the chance for greater characterization for the four antagonists and the possibility of having them each paired with one of the four Inner Senshi; the other half are appalled by the same possibility, feeling it will take screen time away from the girls and detract from the show's girl-power message.

This at least describes two distinct opposing factions in non-complain-y language, although the use of future tense makes me suspect that it runs afoul of Dont Speculate Dont Prognosticate and the "enduring" criteria. Leaving it here in case someone cares to disagree.

  • Haruka kissing Usagi at the end of Act 28 set off arguments between fans who remember the moment fondly from the manga and are ecstatic to see it animated (or are just pleased that a female/female kiss wasn't swept under the rug in adaptation), and fans who are up in arms about what they see as a sexual assault on Haruka's part (and the possible unfortunate Psycho Lesbian implications that could be read into it).

This sounds like the it could be the sort of deep-seated disagreement that can cause a full-on fandom civil war, but as written it stops short of giving full context to establish it as such.

I'm going to post some links to this thread in the relevant Discussion pages to see if I can get some better-informed opinions in here before making any severe cuts.

Edit: The fact that none of the entries on BrokenBase.Sailor Moon Crystal are noteworthy enough for anyone to have added them to YMMV.Sailor Moon Crystal (either by themselves or as a link to the Broken Base subpage) makes me suspect that they're not legit examples.

edited 17th May '17 2:40:12 PM by HighCrate

May 17th 2017 at 2:47:36 PM

Finally, BrokenBase.Dragon Ball Super. Being fairly well familiar with the Dragon Ball fandom myself, I feel pretty confident in calling for this page to be cutlisted. Generally speaking, there are two kinds of Dragon Ball fans when it comes to Super: those who watch it and those who don't. The former only seem to be actually enjoying themselves about a third of the time and have plenty of complaints to level at the show— which they will do among themselves at the slightest opportunity— but are largely just happy that there's a new DB series on TV, and the latter have quietly decided that it's not for them and moved on. Neither has any particular problem with the other.

In general, I'm finding myself increasingly suspicious of any entries that point to a particular issue with a particular episode in a particular entry in a very large franchise. We're looking for large-scale conflicts along the lines of "Kirk vs. Picard" or "prequel trilogy vs. Original Trilogy" where EVERYONE has an opinion and most people can't stand to be in the same room as someone who disagrees with them, not "was Kirk too mean to Spock in Episode 37, or just mean enough?"

Anyway, I'm going to let this sit for a bit before moving on to the rest of Anime & Manga.

edited 17th May '17 2:54:17 PM by HighCrate

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