Sunday, June 22, 2008

Can't Stop the Signal

One of the core concepts of the movie SERENITY is the idea that you "can't stop the signal" - that information always goes out, even if it's buried under layers of distraction (like a Fruity Oaty Bar commercial). One of the ways that the Joss Whedon fandom is distinguished from other (somewhat rabid) fandoms is the level of activism; in a way, we often see ourselves as the "signal." Case in point -

Back in 2006, some fans wanted to figure out a way to get SERENITY back on the big screen. They settled on a charity screening, with proceeds to benefit the very worthy charity Equality Now, a human rights organization that focuses on issues facing women and girls. (A former student of Whedon's mother was a co-founder of the group, so there's your connection.) The group does some amazing work on issues that other (also worthy) groups don't deal with, such as stoning disobedient women, so-called "honor killings," and other dreadful practices. This is the third year of organized, worldwide screenings and the movement shows no signs of slowing down.

Last night, the Charlotte group had its screening - it was a blast! Raising money and awareness should always be fun, don't you think? The global goal this year is $150,000 and I believe the Charlotte group did its part to reach that goal. In addition to the screening, there was live entertainment (really amazing music), a costume contest, food, and a veritable treasure chest of raffle items. I contributed by having a table to sell my book, with autographs for an extra donation. I raised nearly $50, which I thought was pretty cool. Not to mention, it was great (and a little humbling) to meet people who had bought the book, read it, and wanted to chat about it.

These really are some of the best fans in the world.


Akin said...

That must be really cool to have strangers come up to you like that! We had showings in LA, Orange County and San Diego over the past three days... I'm missing the San Diego one this eve because I'm at work of course, but there are a bunch of people going to all three.

Glad you had fun!

Cedar said...

Your blogs are quite spectacular. I've only recently discovered them (post-Slayage). I look forward to reading them whenever I can. How do you have time for all this writing (blogs, conference papers, the book) AND to be such a kind, thoughtful person!

Elizabeth said...

I regret that I could not make this year's Raleigh CSTS event. But I did go last year! And it was good, and good for Equality Now.

Promise to go next year.

Ian K. said...

Hi Dale! I'm so glad we got a chance to discuss issues of faith in Buffy, albeit briefly prior to your wonderful talk at SC3. Still trying to work on my mom :)

I just read an article on the appropriation of Christian iconography and myth in Buffy published by a group associated with the Mars Hill Graduate School here in Seattle:

I was referred to the journal by a friend who is pursuing a Masters of Divinity at the school-lots of great stuff.

If you get a chance, hit me up at my blog sometime!

Elizabeth said...

I used to teach at the same univ. with the author of that article in The Other Journal, and while I didn't actually introduce him to BtVS, I did encourage him to pursue his interest in the show. Really, he owes me a footnote! ;-)

Stacked Librarian said...

I'm a slack friend! I forgot to ask you how it had gone! Fabulously it seems!