I’m not going to be one of those people who would hate on One Direction just because it’s the cool thing to do. They’re… well, tolerable. It’s not like I didn’t tolerate Boyzone or N’Sync or the Backstreet Boys back in the day (But I sure didn’t just “tolerate” Code Red. They were the best. Ever.), either. Boy bands will always be there, some of them will (almost) always act up, and their rabid fans will love them regardless. If people want to pay 17,900 bucks to catch a mediocre act in 2015, let them. Walang basagan ng trip.
Despite that, if my recent run-in with Pinoy Directioners taught me anything, it’s that their fandom is flat out built on crazy. Maybe other 1D fans in other countries are just as crazy, but my experiences have been exclusively with the Pinoy variety. Here are 8 reasons why these fans are disturbing…
8. They have a bigger platform than ever (to make fools of themselves).
Now, more than ever, being a fanatic for anyone or anything is easier. During the era of the Backstreet Boys, you had only message boards and fansites to work with. During the era of the Beatles, there was no internet to speak of. During the infancy of the internet in the Philippines, the highest mark of fandom for BSB would be if you were the web mistress of one of their fansites.
Be Afraid: Don’t think that rabid fans didn’t exist during the BSB era. They did. It’s just that they didn’t have the social media platforms of today which are nowhere nearly as technically prohibitive as setting up a fansite was. Nowadays, you don’t need to be a rabid fan and a computer science graduate just to express your fandom in the most ostentatious way possible.
Be Very Afraid: Facebook. Instagram. Twitter. And everything else that already existed back then. Thanks to the march of technology, they’ve got that one thing fandoms of old never had: a soapbox on demand. They want their undying love for One Direction to be heard, and by golly, they will intrude any conversation there is about anyone who would deign to not be utterly smitten by the church of Liam Payne. And speaking of intruding any conversation there is…
7. They defend One Direction’s honor with way too much gusto (and One Direction is completely unaffected either way).
If anyone has anything negative to say about One Direction online, you can be sure that Pinoy Directioners, like some tween hivemind from the depths of hell itself, will be there to fight tooth and nail to defend the honor of the boys. And when they go to war for One Direction, they really go crazy crazy crazy ‘til they see the sun!
Be Afraid: It doesn’t matter who you are. It doesn’t matter if you’re a celebrity or not. Twitter’s search function makes no distinction, after all. Just ride on a hashtag like #1DSucks or #Ban1DInManila or something like that, and you will experience what we in the vernacular call “kuyog,” Pinoy Directioner Style(s).
Be Very Afraid: They do this despite the fact that none of the group is actually in need of defending, nor will anyone from the group ever magically fall in love with a random Directioner for defending their “honor.”
6. Their fandom is crazy enough to make stories like this plausible (no, seriously).
While Filipinos still have trouble understanding the concept of satire, a certain website decided to use their flawed understanding of the concept to publish something that is more fake news than satirical, and the article has ended up spreading all over the internet, because causing a moral panic over anything remotely popular always has to happen in the Philippines. One Direction is just the next in an endless line of bogeymen who make a mess upon our innocence.
Be Afraid: The tale of a girl who uses her tuition fee to instead buy a ticket to One Direction’s concert next year is plausible precisely because the fandom is that intense.
Be Very Afraid: The aftermath, that the dad supposedly kills the girl after he discovers where the tuition money went, is plausible because people have died here over not knowing “Nobody” by the Wondergirls, making the fake news seem almost normal in comparison.
5. They don’t know how to handle cognitive dissonance (much less define it).
Cognitive dissonance is when you are conflicted because you are holding two contradictory values at the same time. Despite being devout fans of One Direction, most Pinoy Directioners still don’t approve of smoking weed, so parents mostly don’t have to worry about kids getting into weed because of 1D, regardless of this video. Besides, dear parents: your kids are your responsibility, not One Direction’s.
Be Afraid: Ultimately, in the eyes of a hardcore Directioner, One Direction can do no wrong. Therefore, instead of getting angry at One Direction for smoking pot, they will turn their attention to anyone who brings the topic up, instead. Just ask Lourd de Veyra.
Be Very Afraid: They will also turn their attention to anyone who agrees with the person who brings the topic up. Just ask me.Story of my life.
4. The backlash that comes when they outgrow One Direction (is just a matter of time).
Think about what happened to the kids who outgrew the Backstreet Boys (although nobody ever outgrew the Beatles, because they actually had talent). Wasn’t that coming of age just plain jaw-dropping? Cassettes were thrown away, fansites were abandoned, and there was much rejoicing in the streets. Okay, maybe one of those things didn’t really happen.
Be Afraid: As is, former Directioners are already an endless source of amusement. There is a good chunk of One Direction hate coming from former fans, as seen here. Looks like they’re no longer dancing to the best song ever.
Be Very Afraid: Imagine if some kids outgrew One Direction in the time between their parents bought them those 17,900 VIP tickets and the actual concert in March. What a waste of money, right? Well, after the weed-smoking video featuring Zayn and Louis, that’s exactly what just happened for a few of these fans.
3. They’re precisely the target market of this type of lists.
Isn’t it amazing how, with the rise of minimal attention spans, articles that make you feel like you’re “reading” something come out and dominate all our social media timelines for a day? Not since the emperor got himself some new clothes has there been so much ado about nothing.
Be Afraid: Five. Count ‘em.One for each member. Can you believe it? Five articles detailing why each individual member of One Direction is totally the best member ever!
Be Very Afraid: … all written by the same person. Either he has a split personality, or he really needed five paychecks that month. One way or another.
2. They still don’t hold a candle to #TeamBreezy (yet).
What’s probably the most terrifying realization I had about this fandom isn’t so much that they’re the absolute worst humanity has to offer ever. Pinoy Directioners are actually pretty tame in comparison to #TeamBreezy, who just happen to be fans of one of the absolute worst humanity has to offer: Chris Brown.
Be Afraid: Where Pinoy Directioners declare their undying love for Harry, Niall, Zayn, Louis, and Liam, Team Breezy is all about reminding Chris Brown that it was totally okay that he beat up Rihanna, just because he can sing and dance pretty well.
Be Very Afraid: Team Breezy members offer themselves for Chris Brown to beat up on. Aren’t you glad our Pinoy Directioners are pretty harmless in contrast? Say it with me, kids: you and I, we don’t wanna be like them.
1. Their fandom spawned Chicser (yeeeeeep).
Because Filipinos just have to have a Pinoy version of anything remotely famous, the popularity of One Direction directly gave rise to Chicser. Think about that for a moment.
Be Afraid: It doesn’t matter if most Pinoy Directioners can’t stand Chicser. Chicser was created in an attempt to cater to that very fanbase. Now, Chicser has managed to establish its own fanbase that dwarfs even that of 1:43’s. Having to choose between Chicser and 1:43 is pretty much like being asked which puddle of vomit you would like to lick.
Be Very Afraid: Nope. I don’t think anything could scare me more than being forced to choose between Chicser and 1:43. I think Oedipus had the right idea here…
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Ripping your eyes out to spare yourself the horror of Chicser’s videos? That’s what makes you beautiful. Post them feels in the Comments Section.