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Further not taking it
by K Tempest Bradford (ktempest)
at November 16th, 2007 (10:22 am)

current mood: angry

(crossposted to my LJ and to deadbro)
So, it looks like I'm not the only one who is feeling the rage about Heroes at this time.  (No spoilers to follow, as this post is not about an episode.)  Every time I see a post on the intarwebs about the show it's full of people being annoyed, angry, upset, or murderous.  They hate the plot, they hate the characters, they hate the racism, they hate the sexism.

Tim Kring has intimated that he knows the show isn't working.  But of the many things he mentioned that he was doing wrong, he completely left out the whole bit where his show is engaging in some racist and sexist crap.  Maybe he doesn't know.  Maybe he didn't want to say.  But considering the fact that he can't move forward with the show for a little while, I think we need to take advantage and deliver a message to Tim Kring that he can't ignore.

I think we need to write an open letter.  Not just some snarky blog post wherein we say: OMG we hate you!  (though I love those posts)  I think we, as a fandom, need to collectively catalogue why the show isn't working and what specific aspects are making us froth.  I'm talking a deep criticism, possibly with footnotes, that we collectively write (to a degree) and then sign off on, petition-style (but without the petition).

And further, this needs to find its way into the hands of Mr. Kring himself.  I think I know how to get this done, but I won't mention particulars just yet.  Still, I want people to contribute to this with the thought that Tim will actually see and read it.

What do you think, fans of Heroes?  Do we make a bid to ensure that a show we love never makes us feel stabby again?  Do we think it's worth saving? 


Posted by: Laura Shapiro (laurashapiro)
Posted at: November 16th, 2007 03:30 pm (UTC)

I've actually been thinking the same thing. It's unusual for a producer/showrunner to be so in touch with his fans and their desires, let alone to apologize and promise to do better in future. But Kring stayed mostly within the realm of pure artistry in his comments; he didn't address the political implications of Heroes at all.

I think he would listen if enough of us spoke up, as long as we managed to get the information in front of him. My question is, what's the best way to accomplish that? Because it's pretty clear that the fannish voices he's been listening to aren't ours. He's probably monitoring the TWoP boards -- most TV folks know about that site -- and the official NBC forums. But where else would he be looking? How can we get our opinions in front of his face?

There's also the matter of the writers' strike. I am totally respectful and supportive of their fight, and I'm not sure this is the optimal moment to try to reach Kring and his writing team with our concerns. They are on the picket lines every day.

So basically, I think it's important for Kring & co. to be aware of our concerns, but I'm not sure of the best method or the best time to do it.

Posted by: dustdaughter (dustdaughter)
Posted at: November 17th, 2007 12:13 am (UTC)

Kring is also an Executive Producer for the show. Some producers are working to finish the last scripts written before the strike. Perhaps these concerns would be timely in Kring's capacity as an EP?

Posted by: Laura Shapiro (laurashapiro)
Posted at: November 18th, 2007 09:08 pm (UTC)

It's possible. Couldn't hurt, anyway. There seems to be a movement afoot in other journals to get some kind of statement together.

Posted by: mystickeeper (mystickeeper)
Posted at: November 16th, 2007 05:38 pm (UTC)
I will never surrender

I think that the show is worth saving, and with the writers' strike going on, I feel like now is the best time to make our voices heard. Does anybody live near where the strikes are going on? Maybe it'd be possible to get someone to bring our letter to the writers while they're standing in line.

Doesn't Jim Frenkel know Tim Kring? He made it sound like that at Geek.Kon (I was on a Heroes panel with him in early October). Maybe people involved with Wiscon could find a hook-in? I don't know how convoluted that is, though.

It does seem like a lot of writers pay attention to TWoP.

Does Heroes, or NBC, have its own forums on their website? I know that Battlestar Galactica does on the SciFi boards, and Ron Moore (and especially his wife) read them and respond to posts all the time.

Posted by: The Multilingual Kitten (kali_kali)
Posted at: November 16th, 2007 06:55 pm (UTC)

I think it could be done, as long as it was all respectful and all that.

An important thing to remember - and I think you're covering it with the mention of footnotes and such - is that most of society isn't aware of... I'm not sure what the right word is. Like most people would say that Heroes is a wonderfully diverse show, since it has characters of many races - but they don't consider how simple presence isn't the point, but representation as people rather than stereotypes is, and Heroes has been working a lot with stereotypes rather than people. So making sure to explain the perspective that the letter is coming from is important, since assuming everyone's working from the same definitions just never works.

Though, the rampant sexism should be blatantly obvious even to the layperson, as there are so few female characters (in comparison to male characters), and they rarely stand on their own.

Posted by: Six Shirts McWeirderson (just_katarin)
Posted at: November 16th, 2007 08:06 pm (UTC)
Heroes- Wonder Twins bed

There's been some talk going on already in technosage's LJ about using the other avenues we have as fans to get through to TPTB.

Posted by: Oyce (oyceter)
Posted at: November 16th, 2007 09:10 pm (UTC)

Ooo yeah. I second Laura's questions re: the timing (I'm not following the strike very closely, so my opinion is entirely uninformed) and if Kring is even listening to us. But yes, I was a bit irritated that his letter didn't mention the racism or the sexism at all.

Let me know if there's anything I can do to help!

Posted by: K Tempest Bradford (ktempest)
Posted at: November 19th, 2007 09:01 pm (UTC)

I figured it might be more useful to do this during the strike since he can't, theoretically, write any Heroes at all while it's going on. If we get something to him now, then it'll be in his brain when they start up again. also:


Oh, forgot to add: I would totally love it if you would be interested in helping me edit together the final product.

Edited at 2007-11-19 09:02 pm (UTC)

Posted by: Oyce (oyceter)
Posted at: November 20th, 2007 12:02 am (UTC)

Ok! I probably won't have time to look at it until post-Thanksgiving, but I'll try keeping an eye on the comm and pick my brain for ideas. And would lvoe to help edit the final product.

Posted by: Crescent Fresh (chr0me_kitten)
Posted at: November 18th, 2007 03:30 am (UTC)
heroes - hiro protagonist

I think a lot of us have been thinking about writing such a letter (I've posted about wanting to write one to send with a copy of Nisi Shawl & Cynthia Ward's Writing the Other). I'm interested in helping if people put something together.

Posted by: K Tempest Bradford (ktempest)
Posted at: November 19th, 2007 09:03 pm (UTC)

I think sending them a copy of Writing the Other is a fabulous idea.

also http://saveheroes.wordpress.com/

Posted by: dameparis (dameparis)
Posted at: November 19th, 2007 11:26 pm (UTC)

I just want to add that the main forum the Creators watch is the 9th Wonders forum, http://boards.9thwonders.com/ Moreover, TWOP has a thread on the female characters here - http://forums.televisionwithoutpity.com/index.php?showtopic=3160627

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