Why is AU fanfiction in this fandom trying to bury the official canon?
I originally posted this to Fanpop's Lion King club over a year ago. I recently took a look at this and turns out this has a couple of fans there but no discussion. So I seek for discussion here.
PLEASE NOTE that I'm not saying that AU fanfiction isn't cool or shouldn't exist. Personally I LOVE writing alternate universe fanfiction and write a lot of it myself to study what fun other paths can bring. But I let my ideas and stories be known as AU fanfiction and nothing more or less. And I do still write on and like to discuss the actual official stories as well. In my opinion AU fanfiction should exist alongside the official canon as an alternate vision, and not become a be-all-end-all matter..
As in, this topic is something I wish to discuss for two reasons:
1.) The movies are the only media created by Disney and Disney has ignored the books and comics whenever talking about their movies and obviously in the creation of the sequel film, finally downright denying the books by their choices.
As in, it's not important what all Disney owns, what all is in their copyrights. What is important is that Disney apparently hoped to entertain and inspire people with their own seperate entity instead of mixing their own visions and the outsiders'.
Yet there seems to be much more fanfiction and belefs mixing the spin-off books and comics to the films, than there is based solely on the movies' contents and Disney's official confimations.
2.) Remarkable amount of this fanbase has taken these things far from mere fanfiction ideas, by pulling the concepts of belief and fact-arguing into these ideas instead of just calling their ideas fanfiction.
NOW, LET'S GET INTO DETAIL:
(X) Many, MANY fans apparently don't like the parentage choices Disney made for cubs. OR, the drama in Disney's stories is not enough to satisfy the fan's thirst.
--> 'I truly believe Nala is in fact Vitani's mother...[lots of reasoning]...and Vitani got the hair on her forehead from her uncle Mheetu.' (Mheetu was Nala's little brother in early production but was CUT OUT from the story before it took its final form.)
---> 'Kovu is Scar's son?!?!?!' or 'Kovu must be Scar's son!' giving tons of outside appearence "proof". (Yet it's stated twice in the movie that Scar was not his father.)
A story should show or describe a lioness giving birth to her cub and day by day show that cub growing into its final design, or else many fans will start believing the lioness is not its real mother but instead some other canon or book/comic character is. Even when the story gives absolutely no reason for such idea. Fans ignoring how outside appearence is all about genes which can come from anywhere in a family tree and so the mother can be exactly who Disney lets on.
Hence, the fans just don't like the parentage choice Disney made and rather theorize against it. Or in order to create X-cheated-on-X drama or kidnapping drama.
(X) The drama in Disney's story isn't enough to satisfy countless fans' thirst.
Disney has literally come out and said that in the sequel's story the cub from the first film and Kiara are one character, not two different characters. Still many fans ignore that knowledge and pretend that they believe that Kiara has a brother who got killed, murdered, kidnapped or ran away.
Of course there are also those who genuinely believe in that by not having given much thought nor looked into anything in the movie and stuff related to it.
The craziest and most desperate theory I've heard went something along the lines of Kovu being Kopa and Zira kidnapping him, changing his name and btrainwashing Kopa/Kovu that she's his real mother.'nough said...Except that I'm going to say something: That's also the most twisted idea I've ever heard because that would make Kiara and Kovu full blood-siblings that got married and were likely to have children together... Seriously, some fans' imagination run TOO wild and fast for their own good.
Some fans seem to refuse hearing how two characters in the film state that Scar was not Kovu's father. Is this so that they could be outraged by the idea of incest between Kiara and Kovu?
(X) The spin-off books and comics are treated like the greatest thing since sliced bread.
"Tojo could be Vitani's father! I really think he is!"
Tojo is a cub from some Danish comics created by some comic writer who likely had no part in The Walt Disney Company. And certainly was not one of the sequel film's makers (who by the way were Disney's own people.) As in, Tojo is by entirely different creator than Vitani, created years apart on the opposite sides of the world into an entirely different media format.
I mean, because of that, isn't it likelier that Vitani's creators were thinking of their own original character to have fathered Vitani? Or most likely that they never decided the father's identity because it's not important to the story? (Only Kovu's father's identity or rather who it wasn't, was important.)
I mean, yeah sure the spin-off comics and books are there for fans to mix up with the movies and have fun with in any way they like. But they've seemed to succesfully kill people's own original creativity. As in apparently the movies alone aren't enough to stir people's creativity.
Because hey, listen to this - this is what makes me go O__O the most:
On what is likely the best known and most popular Lion King discussion forum so far, (My Lion King Forums), I asked "What is YOUR vision of Mufasa and Scar's youth?" and specifically with bolded font and with capslock on asked people to IGNORE the Six New Adventures books because I was asking their own vision, not someone else's. Now that was in 2010 and only one (1) replied to the topic with visions and even that one refused to do what I asked but drew the Six New Adventures into the vision. A few weeks later another finally came to actually give original thoughts on their youth, but that person still remains the only one (on that forum.) Most people apparently really don't care to think up their own visions or at least share them.
I mean, where are the ORIGINAL character ideas for Vitani's daddy? Why won't people think of their own ORIGINAL ideas for Mufasa and Scar's past even when they're literally asked to? Why people always turn to spin-offs instead of using their own original imagination? Why is so few interested in the story Disney told in which Kiara never had a brother?
FOR THE LAST:
I too love the Danish comics and consider them great alternate universes, but I do not need them to fill in the open spaces the movies left to the character backgrounds / futures. I like using my own original creations and imagination for backgrounds, and study the story Disney wanted to tell without a need to add drama that contradicts the canon.
I'm perfectly entertained by just the movies even when acknowledging Disney's official confirmations for them, and they do inspire me to think up my own original backgrounds for them.
I wonder why so many others are not? Not only because of all the above, but also this:
"Stop treating Lion King like its a form of religion
Person #1 "I just did some research of the Lion King Six Story books and it turns out Kopa isnt a Disney made character, I can provide proof he is not canon to the movie"
Lion King Weeaboo: "NO I BELIEVE KOPA IS REAL AND YOU CAN CHANGE THAT"
Person #1: "But I can provide you with facts involving the subject"
Lion King Weeaboo: "YOUR WRONG I BELIEVE IN MY HEART HE IS REAL ITS THE ONLY LOGICAL EXPLAINATION"
then a whole bunch of Kopa believers attack Person #1 like that person is the anti-christ
Lion King is a goddamn movie."
I think this spin-off religious and conspiracy theory ridden situation is rather sad. I've even heard people asking if The Lion King is based on a series of books. Naturally formed false impression because of the religious fanatism surrounding the book series. Bloody hell, is all I can say to that.
The Lion King was Disney's first kind of original story in animation feature. It was NOT based on an over-rated series of books that were never released outside USA and never re-printed. The books are mere alternate universe merchandize for the movies. I think fans of the books have let their love for the books get a bit too far and that's one more reason why I'm wondering if Disney failed to entertain and inspire with their own story?
The Lion King has been extremely popular ever since the year it was first released in theaters, and if I remember correctly, the original VHS release from 1995 is/was the best selling home video release of all time.
Why is that if so many fans are looking for or get their kicks from official fanfiction combined to their own personal fanfiction and even choose to downright believe in it no matter how many facts are screaming at their face against such "theories"?
I mean, yes, it's great if the movie base inspire any creativity at all, but I think something's gone crooked if fanfiction starts to be more true to fans than the actual official canon.
I suppose this may be a thing in other fandoms too, but to me it seems it's especially wild in this one.
I see I'd also posted this on my own TLK forums, wherein one user has replied with her own thoughts, if you wish to check it out too. Here.