Tue
Aug 14 2012 5:17pm

Incredible Fanvid Compresses Decades of Fandom Into 5 Minutes

The password to view the vid is: fandom! (with the exclamation point)

Most of us have a softspot (you might call it an illness) where well-edited, well-conceived fanvids are concerned. And this one might top them all: premiered at Chicago’s Vividcon last weekend, here is a fanvid dedicated to fandom at large, set to Billy Joel’s “We Didn’t Start the Fire.” You may not be a fan of Billy Joel, but we swear it doesn’t matter. What better way to chronicle decades of geeky dedication than through a song chronicling decades of history?

This incredible work features fandoms across the board, from the most famous of all (Star Trek, The Beatles) to the most obscure (Robin of Sherwood! Due South!), and it goes by decade for the most part. For anyone who has an interest in these things, we highly recommend checking out the creators’ dreamwidth post where they give you great notes on the process of assembling this beast, and also a full recount of the time and research that it all entailed. Questions were crowd-sourced, moments were captured, and a lot of love ended up on the screen. They even have an incredible spreadsheet breakdown of exactly what went into the where, and why.

Watch it. It’s beautiful. It’s for you and all of us.


Stubby the Rocket is the Tor.com mascot. Stubby didn’t start the fire, but Stubby knows who did.

24 comments
Bridget McGovern
1. BMcGovern
I love the overwhelming visceral reaction of, "All of the things I love!!!!!!!!!" I think I actually got some sort of sugar rush from watching. And it's shutting up the part of my brain that would normally be used for snark. Delightful.
Emily Asher-Perrin
2. EmilyAP
It's like opening a present on your birthday and wondering how your friends all learned metalworking to create that sculpture you had in your head and could never create yourself. You're all: "What, for me? Really? Oh, you shouldn't have."

I suddenly have the urge to hug everything.
Charles Moore
3. Shadeofpoe
Indeed, if ever there was a physical representation of "ALL THE THINGS!!!!" this is surly it.
Jeff Youngstrom
4. jeffy
I love the juxtaposition of the Firefly hero shot with the words "homeless vets".
jmd
6. jmd
I loved it.. I recognized so many things, and there were so many different genres and the lyrics lined up with stuff - I think the only other one I would have done is the Edsel scene from "Peggy Sue Got Married".
Liz Bourke
7. hawkwing-lb
Now I want to be home and surrounded by all the things I recognised from that.

(And immediately run out and get some original Star Wars dvds. They are a large lack in my life.)

Sigh.
jmd
8. politeruin
Was that hornblower i spotted in there around 2:20? Nice. Blink and you'll miss it though.
Kelly Kilcoyne
9. kellykelly
All the things, indeed. This is splendid!

And just as I was thinking, "but what about Avatar: the Last Airbender?" the Fire Nation attacked.
jmd
10. Action Kate
This is MADE of awesome.
jmd
11. Darth Touma
How can they simply ignore anything with Bruce Campbell in it? No Evil Dead or Army of Darkness, no Brisco County Jr.... come ON!!!
Lisamarie LiGreci-Newton
13. Lisamarie
I actually was not that impressed. Okay, they edited a bunch of cool stuff together, but that's all over the place now. If they really wanted to impress me, they should have come up with new lyrics.

But I don't like Billy Joel, and I don't really like the original song - and the song really didn't have much to do with the images aside from the occasional lyric going along with the image, so it just didn't strike me as that clever.

But, they had VERONICA MARS! in a super quick or you'll miss it shot so...not a total loss ;)
Leilani Cantu
14. spanishviolet
That was beautiful - they fit almost everything that anyone ever loved! I thought no one else remembered Forever Knight.

I saw Homicide listed at the end, I have to go watch a 3rd time to try to figure out how I missed it ...
Emma
15. margaery
This was great: there are lots of multifandom vids, yes, but the way the editors incorporated fanworks into the video (Very Potter Musical) and some meta fan stuff (the Torchwood bulletin board) and internal meta-fan stuff (Supernatural fan fiction within the show) was ingenious. I think the song was a perfect choice for the idea of fandom: we didn't start the fire, but we're part of it now.
jmd
16. AlamedaPeg
Sandbaggers!! Jeremy Brett! Jeeves and Wooster! So wonderful to have these fantastic older favorites represented. I enjoyed this -- thanks.
jmd
17. Copper
Not even halfway through it and I'm like "OMG OMG that's...that's..." and it's happening faster than I can get it out and it's just AMAZING! Sending this on to all of my fellow geeks.
jmd
18. NickM
Very fun video, and it reminded me of something super-geeky:

"We Didn't Start the Fire" came out a couple years into the "Star Trek: the Next Generation" run. Very soon afterwards [not sure if it was mid-season or perhaps the summer leading up to return], our local TNG station started running a promo to that tune called "We Didn't Start the Series"

A little searching shows that it wasn't just our station, sounds like an official [or mostly so] promo that the syndication clients could use.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g_9eGjZoYoc
jmd
19. asdfghjks
Red Dwarf! Dr Who! Star Wars! Torchwood! Friends! Back to the future! Stargate! Pride and Prejudice! Smallville! Bones! Top Gear! Troy! Merlin! LOTR! Castle! Hornblower! Sherlock Holmes! Glee! Harry Potter! Sherlock! Inception! Firefly! House! POTC! Robin Hood! Avatar: the last airbender! AVPM! Bend it like Beckham! Everything i love and more! Great video, loved the song, fav part was the multiple companions emerging from the TARDIS
jmd
20. krytella
This immediately reminded me of a fanvid from a few years ago (well, maybe more of a filk) about Harry Potter fandom. Listening is really a litmus test of fandom history knowledge.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sTYadVjuvlo
jmd
22. ladyrose42
WOW!!! Great editing. Great matching certain scenes to certain lyrics. Nice grouping of like things (persons at computer, women with guns). Probable have to watch million times and slo-mo to catch it all.
jmd
23. DresdenRose
Oh, the Fandoms! And the vid hit all my fandom buttons from BSG to Hornblower, M7, The Stargates, SPN, and Sherlock.
jmd
24. eck138
What happened to the Hitchhikers Guide?

Subscribe to this thread

Receive notification by email when a new comment is added. You must be a registered user to subscribe to threads.
Post a comment