Since GamerGate and particularly since the release of The Last Jedi, we have seen an endless cascade of “fan wars”. These are mostly online conflicts between fans of a given intellectual property and the studios pumping out “modernized” renditions of those properties with all the baggage that come with it. Many prominent YouTube channels built their following reporting on and fanning the flames of these fan wars. The Critical Drinker, The Quartering, Mauler, Midnight’s Edge, and Overlord DVD are a few that come to mind. And since a lot of these channels kicked off in earnest on the heels of The Last Jedi and associated Star Wars drama they call their followers The Fandom Menace. Such clever!
Of course Hollywood and The Cathedral have been quite happy to join in the fight. Hit piece after hit piece howls about the “toxic fans” that harass studios and stars alike every time a wokified remake receives less than glowing audience reviews.
I doubt any of this is actually news to you dear reader. Many if not most of us on the Dissident Right have encountered these currents, either because we too felt frustration at seeing a beloved property vandalized or simply because the algorithm likes to bait our feeds with this content. And rightly we have felt upset. Nobody likes to see a beloved character humiliated by some woke cutout. And even beyond that, this is the dominant mode under which culture itself is produced: deconstructing everything in the Western canon with a particular focus on demoralizing the regime’s primary enemies.
So what should be done? Feed the outrage machine? Mount boycotts? Give up? Or just accept that culture, at least for the foreseeable future, is going to suck?
No. We on the Dissident Right are called to a higher purpose. We must reject all forms of fandom and walk away from any loyalty to any property, series, world, or genre. We must wholly and absolutely reject fandom as a mode of being (see this video). We must be fans of nothing. And we must become connoisseurs.
In calling for a rejection of fandom, I don’t mean dislike the things you currently like. It’s fine to enjoy movies, books, and other media (even from established franchises), but you have to appreciate them as individual works. Those things must stand on their own merits, not because they have some association with a brand you have an irrational loyalty to. Fans are the ultimate virgins.
When we reject fandom we take power away from The Cathedral that wants to demoralize us by destroying our heroes and our myths. We steal the oxygen from the endless fan outrage cycle that is used as containment of our productive energies. We choke off funding and attention from companies and studies that make crap. And we give ourselves the mental space to work towards something better.
Why must we become connoisseurs? Because connoisseurs are the experts of taste, the gatekeepers of high culture. Whatever is accepted as high culture will eventually influence middle culture and finally low culture. “The Devil Wears Prada” summarized this perfectly when Meryl Streep described in savage detail how the decisions made in her office eventually trickled down to determine exactly what sweater Ann Hathaway would pick out of the clearance bin in the “tragic” casual corner where it was she chose to shop. It works like this in all domains. Deconstruction has been the dominant mode of high art since the 60s. Is it any wonder that now Luke Skywalker is fair game?
Now a valid question that could be asked here is “Why not just make good art?” The answer, simply stated, is that the current class of elite gatekeepers are under the Left’s full and total control. Any work that embodies reactionary values, especially at a high level, cannot make it past this group. Sure, works will get through that “hold a mirror” up to the regime at a superficial level and get lapped up because it appeals to the regime’s vanity. But something that goes deep and draws upon eternal truth, deep meaning, and eternal beauty will find a very cold reception indeed. We cannot reclaim culture through the current gatekeepers and institutions. We must become connoisseurs ourselves.
What does it mean for us to become connoisseurs? In short, we need to cultivate a class of elite tastemakers who have the ability to identify, discern, describe, showcase, patronize, and ultimately disseminate culture that reflects what in our view high art should be. None of these is a trivial matter. Each role requires talent and skill. For example:
- Scouts: people who have their finger on the pulse of the creative space and are able to draw out both the works and individuals that are of value.
- Critics: individuals with a unique talent for discernment who are able to identify in a given work what themes and aesthetics carry the beauty, depth, and transcendent meaning exist and speak to us.
- Reviewers: writers who are able to turn insight into words that can be shared with others.
- Curators: people who can gather and showcase works of value and have access to the resources and spaces to collect these noteworthy works and bring people together to appreciate them.
- Patrons: individuals with the resources to allow promising artists the space and freedom to create and be insulated from the Cathedral’s Eye of Sauron.
No doubt other roles will be needed as well. Further, we will need to have groups of all of these in the different regions where we live so that culture returns to being a local affair and so we can use tastemaking as a coordinating and community building mechanism. Beyond this our ultimate goal is to disseminate culture. To have our tastes and opinions be of such high quality that others on the right (normie cons and the like) start to take notice.
Why does this task fall to the Dissident Right? Because only the Dissident Right understands that the challenge before us is not merely one of rank politics. We understand the profound place that culture has in society and how culture communes with the spirit. We, more so than any other right wing faction, are more in touch with tradition in not just its content, but also its form and aesthetic. Our Reactionary worldview grants us a vision of existence as it is, fully outside the frame of the Left. That insight allows us to be the connoisseurs of the Right. Who else could do this? Con Inc. lives fully within the Left’s frame. We can hardly expect discernment from them. Libertarians? Ayn Rand was the best they ever produced. Anarcho-capitalists? Not a chance. No, this job falls to us. We will be the chads of the cultural vanguard.
Time is not on our side with this effort. There is a lot of displaced talent in the creative Meccas and they are getting claimed quickly. The Daily Wire is the most pernicious of these forces. It wants to become an alternative Hollywood for normie cons. But they are pure containment and any talent they scoop up will be put towards propping up the decaying regime. We have to create a space for talent to flock to that will allow true art to emerge.
So unsubscribe from all your outrage channels, cancel your Disney+ subscriptions, and stop expecting the next batch of slop to taste better than the last. Your favorite franchises are dead and the corpses are in the hands of a bunch of necrophiliacs who will desecrate them until there is nothing left. If you need to get some used DVDs so a form that you can recognize survives, do it, then move on. And turn your energy towards building within the Dissident Right the groups that will grow the culture back from the ashes.