Reddit’s Ghostbusters Fans Find Themselves In An Existential Crisis

Prepared for opening-day drama, sad redditors come to grips with a reboot that is neither here nor there

Jul 15, 2016 at 12:35 PM ET

The lead up to the release of the new “Ghostbusters” movie was a nightmare, thanks to a cretin army of internet commenters on a mission to sink a movie they haven’t seen. Overwhelmingly negative reviews from the public already exist on IMDB, Amazon, and Rotten Tomatoes, and the vitriol is palpable. But now that the movie is out, and the crusade against the film ended in failure, the denizens of /r/Ghostbusters are having to take a look in the mirror.

In an attempt to bring some closure to this absurd saga, the subreddit’s moderators even felt it necessary to post a thread titled “The Future of the /r/Ghostbusters Sub,” and it’s about as melodramatic as you’d expect. Just imagine people coming to grips with the fact that the movie isn’t an embarrassment, and having to endure discussions about the Paul Feig-directed reboot that aren’t dripping with irrational rage.

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Following the moderators initial call for help on navigating the great unknown that is the post-female “Ghostbusters” landscape, Redditor responses started to flow in. And while they can no longer attack the movie, they can still lash out against the criticisms of their myopic fandom. WanderingThespian writes:

What I damn sure don’t like is what it is doing to this sub, and Ghostbusters fans en masse. I don’t like Sony’s marketing tactics. I don’t like people being called “Misogynistic man babies” for having an opinion. I don’t like the absolute shit storm of trolls that come on this sub and post their crap. 90 percent of the articles posted in recent times are all about how sexist people are if they don’t like the new movie.

This is also camp of entitled people who feel they are “true” fans, and that their community has been invaded by Social Justice Warriors (SJWs) who only care about “Ghostbusters” because it forwards a (surprise!) feminist agenda. From Charlemagneffix:

It’s the actual fans of GBs who have to deal with the direction the franchise has gone since our opinions have been utterly ignored by Sony. The SJW trolls will move on to the next thing after the movie has come out and very likely bombed due to having alienated the vast majority of GB fandom. The GB YouTube trailer is the most downvoted thing in history, all of the official GB pages (Twitter, FB, YouTube, etc.) have thousands of posts of frustration from fans. It’s only a couple hundred SJWs in here, if even that, versus thousands of actual fans.

It’s not hard to understand the outrage over GB is because of a building frustration among our generation at having something we really love get poorly rebooted and our opinions become ignored by media execs. We’ve seen it happen with everything from GI Joe to Jem, and people are getting sick of it. It got so bad with GB because Sony decided to make it a sexism thing rather than acknowledge fans did not want a reboot and the reaction from fans is entirely justified given Sony chose to go this path of utterly ignoring the fans of the franchise it needed to win over, and decided to create a marketing campaign built around misandry.

They give their hatred for a film they haven’t even seen by arguing that Sony has ruined this movie, and it’s been turned into a social issue. nbohr1more adds:

I think that the new film has a place here but mostly for comparison and commentary on the current film industry. I don’t think we should white-wash away negative responses to it because the film is a “hostile negative response” to Ghostbusters 1984 fans of itself. It has declared war on fans of the original right out of the gate. Do we just lie there and let it call 1984 fans sexist man-babies who will turn into arch-villain ghosts when we die? What a strange time we live in.

The trolls and SJW’s will get bored of going back and forth with each other eventually and this place will return to it’s pure fandom. And yes, there will be fans of the new film showing cosplay\art\etc and that’s fine. Just don’t expect this crowd to upvote posts about how 2016 GB is God’s gift to the cinema and that all folks who dislike it are cromags who hang-out on r/wifebeating.

But at the end of the day, some users just want a safe space to hate on a movie they have no intention of seeing without being ridiculed. Is that so wrong? According to patmouse, it isn’t:

It looks like a decent film, and I’m sure there’s very sound reason to enjoy it. However, I will not be seeing it on the basis purely that it does not interest me. Maybe in time my stance will soften and I’ll see it when all the smoke and dust has settled but for now, it is simply not a movie that I’m eager to be first in line with. At this point in time the attacks for, and against, the reboot have become too stressful for me to really enjoy it as I feel saying anything about it will surmount to ridicule.

People can enjoy the movie, and they have every right to do so. But I also don’t want them to enforce or belittle anyone who chooses not to. No one should be inclined, or bullied, or belittled to see something if it’s just not their thing. At the same time, I am certainly open to a respectful debate as to hearing about the film or just happy to hear that something that doesn’t involve any “It’s about the women, isn’t it? Stupid nerd” opening monologue that most trolls seem to start almost all their conversations with.

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It probably won’t come as a shock that the straw poll included in the thread reveals that those who voted don’t like the movie, but hopefully the release of the film will let these tortured souls return to whatever it was they were doing before this all started. Then again, this is Reddit, and I’m sure they’ll find something to rage against. The possibility of a sequel, perhaps?