Sunday, October 16, 2005

Requiem for Rampage

“You’ve got to know when to hold ‘em
Know when to fold ‘em
Know when to walk away
And know when to run”

-“The Gambler” Kenny Rogers

So I hear one of my favorite blogs ever, Graeme MacMillan’s Fanboy Rampage, is retiring as of tomorrow, and I am distraught – fucking distraught – about the whole thing.

For two years Graeme has hosted a 24/7 snarkfest that casts the stink-eye across the vastness of comic fandom and unwarranted hyperbole. FBR was link-blogging at its best – Graeme trawled the message boards and comic news sites every weekday morning and offered up his fresh catch for the hungry masses waiting on the docks. With a few salient comments, Graeme got the ball rolling then turned things over to the jackals in the comment section (myself included), who would rip into the day’s fodder with glee. Wow, that’s a lot of mixed metaphors in one paragraph - forgive me.

Fanboy Rampage was a daily ritual for me. I didn't always comment, but I always checked out what people were saying. At its best, FBR was a pissing contest in the comments section between wise-ass geeks, each trying to top the last bon mot. On occasions folks like Warren Ellis or Kurt Busiek (who always wins) would stop by and drop some knowledge. On other occasions the comments would get invaded by outraged nerds from whatever message board was being mocked, and sometimes you’d just get assholes spouting off some insane shit. Always lively, always provocative, always snarky, Fanboy Rampage was the Algonquin Round Table of comic fandom, with Graeme as Dorothy Parker. Actually, it was like the Algonquin Round Table with guest appearances by Macho Man Randy Savage and Sam Kinnison.

While I'm bummed for selfish reasons that FBR is going away, I’m of the mind that blogs should be transient or constantly evolving entities. A site that doesn’t adapt soon grows stale or “jumps the shark.” The day will come when I close the doors and turn out the lights on Dave’s Long Box and move on to something else. One should quit while one is ahead, or risk becoming irrelevant or just boring. Don’t you wish they had yanked Friends or The West Wing off the air while they were still at the top of their game? That’s what I’m saying.

Now, I’m not sure that’s why Graeme is pulling the plug. Two years is a long time to run a blog on a daily basis, and if I had to guess, I’d say he just felt it was time to focus on other things. Perhaps the daily immersion in the briny waters of fandom was exhausting, or started to take the fun out of comics for him. Maybe he got tired of offended fanboys emailing hate bombs to him. I don’t know; any of those would be a good reason to move on.

So let me just extend my thanks to Graeme for providing so many of us with a place to gather, a place where we could all speak the same vernacular, a place where we could all sing Kumbaya. I wish him luck and hope to see him online again soon.

You know, I just thought: perhaps I should have waited until Graeme actually pulled the plug. I mean, if FBR doesn’t end on Monday, I’m going to look like a total ass.

Wouldn’t be the first time…


Anonymous said...

rampage was at times informative but almost always a mixed bag. Sometimes you'd get a story that you hadn't read on the 20 comic news sites that you read daily. But I am infinitly thankful that it provided a service to us people that wanted to stay away from places like bendis's board. In fact rampage gave me a reason to not visit a lot of message boards. But at it's best it was gold, sadly I haven't really enjoyed it for a while and have just been skipping it over and going to the sources of the links. Can't say I'll miss it and I can't say want it to go. Eh.

Doctor Sordid said...

For those of us who don't have the time or the inclination to visit 20 comic news sites daily, it provided an invaluable service, if only to reassure us that there are people out there even more dangerously obsessive about comics than us..!

Anonymous said...

I'll miss it a bit, I still thought it had plenty of life left, but if Graeme wants to close it up, that's cool too. There's plenty of other blogs to hang out and talk comics at. Like this one!

joncormier said...

I'm going to miss it. It was a mixed bag but it was like one of those treat bags you got at a birthday party. Even if the party sucked you just ask the kids parent for a treat bag and hit the road satisfied (unless they were those freaky health food nut parents - they sucked).

Still, I'm trying to encourage the blog-o-sphere to adopt "Posting the Cat" as our own term for "Jumping the shark" as first made aware to me here:

Anonymous said...

I heart Rampage.

Kitty said...

Well said, Dave. Well said!

I'm losing a news source and an entertainment riot in Rampage. Man! I'm heartbroken. Glad to have been around while it was in full swing, though.

Anonymous said...

To lose this as i have just discovered it is a real kick in the teeth dabnabbit. Sigh.

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