(A note from Alice).  You know, I let a little controversy slip into the site this week.  Sorry, I do apologize.  This is a site where we love our show, are a bit fanatical about it, but we're not oversensitive to things.  It's this thing called common sense.  I can proudly say this, especially given the amount of time and effort I put into this site and my articles, but it's only a TV show.  I'm thrilled with all the level heads that come here and I'm grateful to every single one of you.  I've always chased the trouble makers away, and I'll continue to do so from now on. 

Elle2 wrote up some thoughts based on what exploded in the recaps article and I'm hoping her words on it becomes the last on this matter.  She does a great job of differentiating bias vs. bash and this should clear up any confusion.  After this, we're going back to what we do best.  Loving this amazing show. 

But first, Karen shared this poem in the comments on Sam Fans vs. Dean Fans, and I'm making it more visible right here.  It's absolutely perfect!  If this doesn't point out the absurdity of all this fan fighting, nothing will. 

--------------------------------------

It’s Thursday night and Supernatural credits just came to an end.
The fans sat silent to reflect and comprehend.
Too much to absorb believe a re-watch is in order.
Bless those who invented the video recorder.

The second watch is done and minds are now clear.
It’s getting late, but the fans will persevere.
For they are off to their websites to read the reviews,
Read all of the comments and to share their own views.

But wait what is this that we are reading.
Some fans stating things that could be misleading.
What are they saying? This must be a joke!
It’s a tease, it’s a lie, it’s just to provoke.

But the fans are now fighting and taking a side.
They’re becoming angry and nasty as they quickly divide.
They must take it all back or do a re-write.
For with them being so vile tempers are going to ignite.

Saying Dean is childish, a pervert and so mean.
And he gets all the great lines and far too many scenes.
He’s self righteous, the hero all because of his deal.
But lets not forget who broke the first seal.

Then there’s Sam all whiny, selfish and ungrateful.
He slept with a demon and was never truthful.
He betrayed and strangled his brother as well.
He went off with Ruby and freed Lucifer from hell.

And of course there is Castiel, he has been dragged in it too.
For he’s in too many shows and they want to bid him adieu.
He won’t even own up to his part in the apocalypse.
Just adds on the blame to the brother’s many slips.

Then there are the writers, oh they thought they’d sneak through.
But the fandom is quick to lay blame on them too.
For they have been handing in too many holes in their scripts.
They’re not consistent and they’re flawed with too many quips

And finally Kripke, what have you been doing?
The apocalypse is upon us, yet nothing is brewing.
Where are the battles the wars and the fights?
This season was to go beyond great heights.

Ok that’s enough of all this negativity.
This bickering is taking away the fans respectability.
What happened to being adults and acting our age?
And the love for the brothers we use to engage.

It was always interesting to see what others had to say.
Even the different takes and opinion of those that were risqué.
Where are the fans that were always friendly and polite?
Who would encourage other views without stating who’s right.

It’s time to let go of the anger and hostility.
Take a step back and regain our sensibility.
For this maybe the show’s last season.
So lets not end this year in a state of high treason.

------------

Bias or Bash? …by Elle2
 
So Alice has a ‘bent’ towards Sam, so what? Here’s a little secret that I’m sure everyone already knows; I have a ‘bent’ towards Dean. Why do I think everyone already knows this? Simple, the subconscious is powerful and always gets its message across no matter how hard we try to keep it under check.
 
Here’s the thing, though, Alice specifically invited me to join her in regular posting – something I’ve taken a bit of a break from and while the ego part of me believes this latest dust up would never have occurred had my balancing act been readily available – *pure sarcasm, all*, -- the realistic part of me knows that this little disagreement or debate or whatever would still have come up because when you bill yourself as different from other sites, someone will always come around to try to knock some sense into you. Perhaps that’s all this is.
 
First of all I’d like to ask a question, what’s so wrong about having a bias towards something? Incidentally (and convenient for my next paragraph) my computer tells me a synonym for bias is favoritism, so here goes the next paragraph: Aren’t whole industries built upon favorites? Sports, anyone?   Music, chocolate, beer, anyone, Bueller, Bueller?
 
As kids aren’t we asked what’s our favorite color, favorite subject in school, favorite teacher, favorite Power Ranger – erh, *dates self, blushing* My point is is that from when we’re very young we’re taught through socialization that we’re to have a favorite of something, someone…dare I say a bias.
 
Webster’s says bias is having prejudice or a bent…bash is to attack verbally or physically
 
Here’s what’s being missed in all this recent commenting – and by the way, kudos to all for coming out of lurkdom to air an opinion…way to go! – there’s a big difference between having a bias and bashing. 
 
The Winchester Family Business is all about loving the show, the brothers, the music, the car, the demons – it’s a strange love there…we love to hate them, loving the sets, the directors, the writers, the creator, we love to bash (yes, okay, admittedly we do engage in a bit of bashing) we love to bash the CW (but then again, who doesn’t) and we love, love, love to encourage people to talk, write, engage their friends and spread the love for the show. Here’s what The Winchester Family Business isn’t all about…bashing.
 
Bias is allowed, Sam girls, Dean girls, Jared girls, Jensen girls, all are welcome! Come in, explore, read, add a comment, vote in a poll or simply lurk to your heart’s content, but no bashing, please.
 
If you must comment about how Dean is perfect and Sam is a jerk or Sam is perfect and Dean is a jerk or that Kripke is a ******* or Castiel is all that (or none of that) then feel free, type your bashing comment into the comment section and then simply do not fill in the password and exit the site. You’ll have bashed, no one will ever know. You’ll feel better having gotten whatever it is you needed to get off or out of your system but no one need ever know.
 
The Winchester Family Business is for loving, drooling, analyzing and over-analyzing Supernatural. Bias is welcome, bashers need not apply.
 
Elle2
 

Comments  

elle
# elle 2009-10-25 00:00
First - that poem is awesome! I cracked
up. You have quite the way with words, Karen.

Elle2 - thank you for this level-headed piece. I completely agree that we all have a bias to one view or another but the fact remains that everyone is entitled to their opinion and to share that opinion in a constructive and non-offensive manner. For the most part, the regular contributors/po sters on this site achieve this balance perfectly. We made it through all of season four, at least to the best of my recollection, without such dust-ups as these because the regulars are thoughtful and creative in their commenting, and most come here to avoid the fan-base wars that go on in other domains of the internet.

Part of me feels like many viewers went into season 5 looking for a reason to create a fuss - take a look at all the huff-puff over season five before it even aired. I don't understand this mentality.

Supernatural is a cumulative show in which all its elements make it the show we love. So while I can see while people might not love certain characters or plot lines, consider that they facilitate the show getting to the things we love about it. So, okay, Ruby wasn’t a fan favourite (and you’ll get no argument from me there) but as a character, her purpose was achieved and frankly, it was a delicious storyline full of drama, emotion and action. Season four was arguably the best season yet (and if ratings were any indication, many other’s share this opinion) but it could never have been that great without Ruby or Castiel or the many twists regarding the characters, such as Dean the Torturer or Sam the Addict. All these elements were necessary to achieve greatness and true fans of the show can appreciate the overall picture, even if they don’t particularly like specific elements of the show.

Anyways, enough babbling now.

Thanks for the great article, Elle2!
Suze
# Suze 2009-10-25 04:52
Love the poem, Karen.

Well said, Elle2. It's not the fact that people have preferences that grates ... That's just natural ... It's the way they need to give everyone else's a kicking along the way!
Narcissus
# Narcissus 2009-10-25 06:30
Well put..agreed 100%.
elle2
# elle2 2009-10-25 07:15
Alice, Karen, Elle, Suze and Narcissus,


Alice, thanks for going ahead with my article, like you I want to put this behind us and move ahead. Great comments from you as well, chase away the nasties, please.

Karen, what a way with words! That was great, I smiled all the way through and thoroughly enjoyed the brisk writing and thoughts. Excellent.

Elle, I'm glad you liked my bit. YOu make great points about Season 4, especially Ruby. She might not have been my favorite character -- although had the likes of a Nicki Aycox been portraying her I think I would have loved it greatly, but she was critical to the momentum of the story and showing just how devious and determined the demons were/are.

Suze, it finally hit me in a moment of scanning the comments that we were missing a critical point, bias is allowed, bashing is not. Have an opinion by all means, just don't be mean. I'm glad you saw that. :-)

Narcisuss..thanks 100%. Enjoy all, only 4 1/2 days until our next new eppie!
Dany
# Dany 2009-10-25 10:21
First - Karen you rock, that's a great poem!

Elle2 thanks for this article, I agree with you 100%.
I really don't mind when people get biased (me included!), what really annoys me is when people get from bias to bashing other people opinions and lately that's been happening a lot (to the point that I'm stopping to read the comments area). Glad Alice don't allow that here and is keeping those (rotten apples) away.

And this is the last time and the last comment I speak/write about it. I'm done and moving forward! From know on I'm all about the loving, drooling, analyzing and over-analyzing Supernatural :D
Jasminka
# Jasminka 2009-10-25 14:29
Hi, Elle2,
a wholehearted thank you coming up… I never got it, either – what’s so wrong with being biased? And you put it really nicely … everyone is biased. Not a day goes by that we don’t do or choose anything according to our personal bias (so, for sake of debate, I’ll stick to that word) – I don’t eat sprouts, because I don’t like them, but I’m a fan of bananas. I’ve never experienced the break out of a fight over that question…

There is indeed nothing wrong with having a soft spot for one character and not so much for the other (coming back to our beloved show). The only thing wrong has been the lack of tolerance concerning the matter.

Personally, before this bias-and-bashin g-thing got bigger, all I found on this site was love, some craziness (and why not?) and most of all respect for another’s opinion. It was a welcoming atmosphere, with a lot of humour and fun… That is something this site must not lose.

I really don’t want to deal with the whole thing anymore. Let’s put this behind us and get back to simply loving the show in all its aspects. There will always be characters we like more, others less, but the creators put every character in for a reason, and – like Elle pointed out wonderfully – they serve their purpose in the course of the story. And the complex and multidimensiona l storyline has kept me hooked from the beginning. That is what I love to talk about with you folks… not the other waste of energy and time.

Elle, I’m right there with you – I second everything you said. Thank you!

Karen, what a wonderfully ironic piece… Loved it!!!

Take care, all, love, Jas
Amelia
# Amelia 2009-10-25 14:46
The difficult thing about really loving or participating fully in a Samgirl site, though, is that the bias affects *everything*, even down to the polls. Look at the poll about Castiel's comments to Sam, for example. Every option on there is some variant on the character being wrong wrong wrong for pointing out that Sam didn't make a good choice last year. (I can't see how strangling his brother and following Ruby was a good choice, but since we're asking what's wrong with Castiel, that's the implication.) Out of seven options, you only get to say that he's a lousy excuse for a sentient being and you hope he dies, he's a lousy excuse for a sentient being but he'll come to his senses eventually, he's a lousy excuse for a sentient being and you don't care, or, none of the above because you're just a crazy Misha fan.

That seems to be a direct result of this being a Sam site, because for the most part, it's Sam fans who think he did nothing wrong last year. Therefore, it makes it hard for a lot of people (not all, certainly!) who don't have the Sam bias to fully partake.

I think bias is perfectly fine, but if one is stoking the flames of the fanwars (the Sam fans vs Castiel fans portion, in this case), I think copping to that instead of pretending that one is above the fray is the respectable thing to do. I think this site is a terrific place for Sam fans, and I'm glad you have it. But I personally felt a lot more comfortable here before the bias got so extreme, because this was always a place that seemed to be free from the fanwars. Now that it's openly Sam-biased, yet still claims to be above the fanwars, I feel a lot less comfortable here. So, in this one fan's case, bias does make a difference in how much I can enjoy a site.
Amelia
# Amelia 2009-10-25 15:57
To clarify: none of the above is meant to be a request for any kind of change. I'm not a regular reader anymore, and I wouldn't ask for change even if I still was. This is Alice's site, and her opinion reigns. Reading through Elle2's post just made me realize that some may not understand why it's difficult to participate even when hardcore bashing is not present, and I thought my perspective would help. Hardcore bashing is not the only kind of bias that turns people away, and when people are turned off, it isn't because they want to hurt your feelings or "cause trouble for the sake of arguing". It's just that when the bias bleeds into the site, there are premises taken for granted here (such as Castiel being crazy for thinking Sam chose wrongly last year) that are so vastly different from mine that discussing the show here would be very difficult. On some sites, the basic premises aren't that different, so discussing the details is useful. But when someone sees the show so very differently, discussing the details is pointless, because even the big things can't be agreed upon (ie, what KIND of crazy is Castiel? Projecting his issues onto Sam, just a straight-up dick, simply confused, worthy of death? I don't think he's crazy in this case, so I can't discuss those details).

I hope this post, and the above one, are taken in the spirit they were intended... not as criticism, nor as fighting, but as answers to the question Elle2 posed about why bias can be unpalatable to visitors even when it doesn't take the form of bashing.
Sablegreen
# Sablegreen 2009-10-25 16:15
Karen, once again, YOUR POEM ROCKS!!! I hope you continue to write them for this site.

Elle2 I agree...everyon e has a favorite and always will, and there is nothing wrong with that. it's when it gets to bashing that all becomes wrong. I hope Alice keeps all those 'bashing' kind from posting here.
sylvia
# sylvia 2009-10-25 16:17
For the record, i didn't think your Castiel poll was biased. In fact, when i went to check an answer, i didn't find one that i liked. I was looking for "he's a busy body who needs to mind his own business" but alas, it didn't exist. I think in fact that this site likes Castiel which is okay. And the poll merely reflected how most of the fandom felt after the last episode. It wasn't bashing. It was merely speculation.
Antoinette
# Antoinette 2009-10-26 00:34
Interesting interpretation of that poll, Amelia. I think you've made a jump, though, from "Poll writer asks, "What's Castiel's problem" to "Poll writer thinks Sam didn't do anything wrong last year."

I don't see any evidence on the site that supports your jump, there. I've never seem Alice or any recapper on the site approach anything like, "Sam did nothing wrong last year." I think that jump was based on your own sensitivities, towards thinking criticism is bashing, perhaps?

For instance, I think Sam did plenty wrong last year. He chose wrong over, and over, and over again in season four. Wrong choices, and how he justified them to himself, was his whole story for season four.

But I've also thought, "What's his problem?" about Castiel this season. Why? He chose loyalty to Zachariah, a bad dude, up until the last few minutes of season four. And therefore I think he's acting pretty self-righteous to both *Sam and Dean* for a guy who hasn't owned up to his whole part in setting Lucifer free.

So yes, it is possible to think Castiel is getting pretty free with pointing the blame finger for a guilty party, without that somehow implying Sam is blameless.
Supernarttu
# Supernarttu 2009-10-26 02:11
Since I'm fairly sure I've made my opinion known before (and don't really like repeating myself) so I'll just say "amen" to this piece.

BUT why I REALLY had to write a comment was to tell Karen that her poem here (plus the ode to custos too) is AWESOME, on top of awesome and then some! :D
Jasminka
# Jasminka 2009-10-26 07:49
Hi folks

Amelia, hi,

Considering all the severe and somewhat sharp-as-a-knif e comments we’ve read about all the bash-and-bias matter, I thought it great that you took the time to post an opposing opinion, which is perfectly fine by me.

I must have been visiting a different site, though, as I never found this site to be an ‘openly-Sam-b iased’ site – and I guess those fans who keep thinking that Sam did nothing wrong, clearly haven’t understood the character. Of course he did a lot wrong, yet from his point of view and given the circumstances, he made the choices he felt the only ones possible, mainly to save his brother and to follow the Winchester of self-sacrifice. He made a lot of mistakes, and he is trying to own up to them. That’s, in short, all.

Unfortunately the care for the characters turned into a personal witchhunt… taking sides suddenly was a huge matter and some fans probably would have no problem with sending ‘Samfans’ or ‘Deanfans’ (depending on the camp someone belongs to) to burn at the stake. That is hugely ridiculous. Hello? Fiction? TV-Show?

I do believe we’ll be back to normal, soon. Normal being – loving this show and discussing it on a respectful and tolerant level, while paying attention and tribute to all the characters and their excellent actors.

Take care, y’all, Jas
Karen
# Karen 2009-10-26 08:06
Hi Everyone
Just wanted to thank everyone for your support of the poem(s).
It’s probably been around 20 years since the last time I did any kind of poem.
If it wasn’t for this site and the shirt contest, the creativity side of my brain would never of been kick started.
I am hoping to do more for any future articles.
Providing the flow and creativity juices continue to stay with me.

To Elle2 – Love what you had to say. Agree 100%.
I think my views on all this silliness, has been more than expressed.

To Alice - Just wanted to say… Thank-you and I LOVE your recaps and your site.
When I first came across your site, it was the recaps I read first.
Then I excitedly moved to all the other articles.
Be proud of what you created here.
I will continue to view and post to this site, until such a day that you choose to put it to rest.
Amelia
# Amelia 2009-10-26 11:52
*Interesting interpretation of that poll, Amelia. I think you've made a jump, though, from "Poll writer asks, "What's Castiel's problem" to "Poll writer thinks Sam didn't do anything wrong last year."*

Hi, Antoinette! The reason for the jump, as you term it, is that the timing of the poll coincided with the episode in which Castiel pointed out that Sam made a bad choice, and the first poll answer was that he was just projecting his guilt onto Sam (if it had been about projecting onto Dean, I would've expected it to come after Lucifer Rising).

You may be absolutely correct; however, the impression I got was that the author was referring to Castiel's "problem" as the fact that he thinks Sam chose wrongly, and he must either be confused, projecting or a bad person for thinking so. If she meant what was his problem for following Zachariah last year, I wouldn't have expected the projecting answer... because I don't think following Zach could've been precipitated by a projection of guilt. But if that's what the author meant, then I apologize for misunderstandin g her.

"I must have been visiting a different site, though"

Hi, Jas! And thank you for the welcome. But no, I don't think we're visiting a different site. I think it's just that different people sometimes have different reactions to the same site, which is why I felt it might be helpful to post my own reactions. I'm very aware, and very glad (for what it's worth) that some people feel comfortable here. I don't by any means believe that I've accidentally visited a different site, or that you have... simply that, as I said above, when the basic premises of how one views the show are so different, even simple bias without overt bashing can be enough to make someone with different premises feel uneasy here.
Jasminka
# Jasminka 2009-10-26 12:55
Hi Amelia,

Hello folks,

that thing about the visiting of different sites was meant to be irony, but I probably should have made that a bit clearer, as I, personally, have not found this site to be overly biased. At least not in a way that would have upset me.

But, of course, considering the deeply personal reasons someone looks at this show for or a website for that matter, combined with personal preferences or sensitivities might result in feeling ‘uneasy here’, you’re right. From my point of view it’s absolutely okay to voice that and put it out for discussion.

The only thing not okay, which I said before in another comment, is the sometimes impolite, derogatory fashion in which some statements are given.
Now, I have to admit that I don’t look to other sites much, and the ones I visited were swarming with oversensitive, disrespectful (not only on a fan-on-fan-war basis, but insulting actors, producers and writers alike, which I cannot tolerate, sorry) and sometimes downright dense comments. Those viewpoints could poison the fun I’m having watching this show, so I stay away from those sites.

Here I found – so far – a very welcoming atmosphere, various comments, sometimes pro-Sam, pro-Dean, contra-Sam, contra-Dean, but expressed in a manner that nobody would have reason to feel insulted or ‘bashed’. I hope that will not change. I’m not exactly crazy for fan-websites in general,and I don’t have time to devote a huge part of my days to them, but I found it refreshing and plain fun to be able to talk about this great show with other people who love it, too. That discussions like this could arise… I actually not believed possible, and I’m still having a hard time getting why this is so important….
But, well, I wouldn’t say anything about it, were it not important on some level. As for me I’m trying to calm the waves a bit, simply because I would like to get back to the fun-loving debates there can be… About the whole bias- or-not-issue I couldn’t give a ‘rat’s ass’, to quote Dean.

That’s all from me for today. Need to get back to real life and the stuff I need to do there.
Best wishes to you all, Jas
elenaM
# elenaM 2009-10-27 21:00
Karen--glad to hear you're hoping to write more poetry--can't wait!!! These were so funny and so spot-on
Bethany
# Bethany 2009-11-13 09:33
Karen - loved loved loved the poem :D

I have to admit that I never thought that this site had any kind of bias and one of the reasons I love coming to this site is that we can talk about the show and have different opinions without descending into bashing.

While I will admit to having a soft spot for Dean (especially when he's being goofy) I would classify myself as bi-bro but I don't think it matters really, we all have our preferences and that's great. One of my favourite things/articles /comments on this site was where people identified their favourite episodes and why, made me look at some episodes in a whole new light.

I've been on other sites and I just don't understand the hate. Personally I like hearing different opinions as it makes me think about storylines or character bits in a way that would not have occured to me, or moments/things/ references get pointed out that I just plain missed and as such I get something else out of the show, something new.

So let's agreed to disagree people and focus on our love for the show!