Geek Culture: From Outcasts to Mainstream
Why Has Geek Culture Become So Trendy?
The term geek has evolved from being associated with stereotypical nerds with a love of pop culture and an interest in science to today’s high-achieving business leaders and technology innovators. But why has geek culture become so trendy?
Individuals high in fantasy proneness and sensation seeking may be more likely to engage with geek media. However, because computer/console gaming and social networking sites cross-loaded on more than one factor, these items were omitted from analyses in this study and subsequent studies.
Back in the days when geek culture was more obscure, liking comic books or SF novels was like wearing a scarlet letter “G.” It made you an outcast, or at least a social misfit. Now, geeks are a visible and lucrative demographic. They spend lots of money year in and out on their favorite hobbies, and they freely share their enthusiasms on the internet.
Moreover, geeky pursuits have become mainstream, and their popularity is evident in the success of movie adaptations of comic book characters. For example, Marvel’s movies rake in huge sums of cash at the box office. As a result, the creators of games and anime are forced to take fewer risks in order to please the crowds. This is often seen in the form of microtransactions.
Movies are a great way to introduce students to geek culture, especially if they’re based on a popular game or comic. Many movies also include moral and philosophical questions that are ripe for discussion, allowing students to make their own connections with the characters and stories they love.
Nerds and geeks are traditionally depicted in movies, TV shows and the press as a group of stereotypical individuals who lack popularity and are obsessed with their hobbies. They’re often shown to have certain characteristics, such as poor personal hygiene and wearing braces, glasses and the usual nerd attire.
In a perfect world, filmmakers would realise that gaming and fandom are now part of mainstream culture and reflect it fairly in their movies. Unfortunately, this is not always the case, with some geeky pursuits being subjected to ridicule by pop culture.
Many of the same nerd stereotypes have appeared on TV as in movies. Those who enjoy games, comic books, anime, or science fiction are often mocked as socially awkward bookish types, or worse. They’re characterized as being white (which carries racial connotations) and male, often wimpy and emasculated by athletic or rebellious alphas.
These days, however, geek culture has exploded into the mainstream, influencing today’s biggest blockbuster movie franchises. Once ridiculed for collecting comics and learning elfish, geeks have become leaders of industry, billionaires, and rock stars associated with entrepreneurship and professional success. Yet, the misrepresentation of geek culture by contemporary media remains deeply offensive to those who participate in it. The all too cliched depictions in movies and TV are seen as an attack upon an important cultural part of their lives.
Anime’s unique aesthetics and storytelling techniques have influenced film and television on a global scale. From the sexy fashion trends of Sailor Moon and Naruto to the boundary-pushing animation of Stranger Things and John Wick, anime has changed the way we view art and entertainment.
Unlike American cartoons, which often contain racist caricatures of black people and other minorities, anime characters are shown with more variety in physical characteristics. Anime fans are known as otaku, and they display their love of the genre by wearing cosplay outfits, collecting merchandise, and attending local and international conventions.
Anime has even inspired musicians, rappers, and actors to embrace their inner geek. Actor Samuel L. Jackson, for example, is a massive fan of anime, and his love for the genre is evident in his work.
Although gaming has become a prominent aspect of geek culture, it is not without its controversies. Some geeks are annoyed by the way gaming is misrepresented in the media. They feel that the cyclical tabloid hysteria about games such as Fortnite is meant to mock them and their interests.
Gamers tend to form tribes based on the genre of game they play. These tribes are often centered on specific niches, such as tabletop games, console games, or role-playing games. These tribes can cause toxicity when members compete for attention and try to outdo one another.
Often the stories in games, comics, and anime deal with moral and philosophical questions that are ripe for discussion. This is a great opportunity to show how your faith interacts with these hobbies and why they matter.