Cassie's Cranky Corner

Darn the Fangirls: A Look on Why High Expectations in Men are Made
Cassandra Lobiesk

Somebody once told me, that there are more women than men on the planet. So technically, it wouldn’t be hard for every guy to get a girlfriend. In fact, there should be at least one to two women per lucky man. Right? Completely and absolutely wrong. In recent years, the ratio of men to women has not changed drastically. So why is it that the females have gotten pickier and more prone to being spinsters than finding that special someone? The reason, my friends, is the art of squealing and hyperventilating over ideal characters. This idea can be summed up to one word, and one word only.


Yes, with the introduction to fandom and fangirling, the ratio of females interested in real life men has decreased significantly. But what makes fangirling so addicting and why has there been a significant increase in this so-called event?

Background image from Hana Kimi
The graph portrays the relation between women available for men to woo versus the amount of fangirling being done. As the fangirling increases, the percentage of available women continue to decrease.

The culture of today has seen an increase in types of entertainment. Where many admire the classic tragic romance of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, yearn for Penelope’s utter loyalty and reunion with her husband Odysseus in Homer’s epic, or sigh aloud to the romantic ministrations of Mister Darcy in Jane Austen’s novel Pride and Prejudice, there are still others who find that the current men personified in the written word and on canvas have greater appeal. I mean, there may be some who still prefer the classical romantic heroes to the new-age, but let’s face it. Current fictional characters have their appeal as well.

Recently, there has been quite an increase in the amount of people added to the “Fangirling List,” among them include fictional characters created by authors Tamora Pierce (George Cooper, Numair Salmalin, and Jonathan of Conte of the Tortallan saga), Janet Evanovich (Joe Morelli and Ranger in the Stephanie Plum series), Anne Rice (Lestat in her vampire novels), J.K. Rowling (Fred and George Weasley from the Harry Potter series), Lindsey Davis (Marcus Didius Falco of The Silver Pigs), and Stephenie Meyer (the Cullens — specifically Edward and Jasper — from her popular Twilight saga). I could go on, but the list is hefty enough as it is that this article would never end!

Robin Hood, Hana Yori Dango, Hana Kimi, Harry Potter
A collage of fangirly objects in TV series, movies, and JDrama. The characters shown include Hanazawa Rui, Tsukasa Domyouji, Will Scarlett, Cedric Diggory, Robin Hood, and Nakatsu Shuichi.

Fandoms (organizations that dedicate themselves to certain works or characters) are abundant on the Internet and it comes as no surprise that if you search for a popular character you are likely to get a fangirling site. In many cases, these characters are so ‘swoon-worthy’ that actual men pale in comparison (see the graph given on women availability versus fangirling above for more information), and thus online groups such as “Because I read Twilight I have unrealistic expectations in Men” and “Anime and/or Manga Gave Me Unrealistic Expectations For Significant Others” are created. But what do these characters have so much of in common — if they have any similarities at all — and why do girls squeal over them so?

Some insist that characters they fangirl over are completely and utterly sweet, kind, humorous, brilliant, unusual, quirky, strong, charming, and good/bad (depending on the preference). Others just drool over the character’s prettiness (or hotness, again depending on preference). Or, in some cases, the character has the best of both worlds with random faults here and there. In any case, the fangirls escape reality by fantasizing over these characters, and by the time they get transported back into the real world, the men around them just don’t rise to the same standards anymore. I mean, unless they’re dressing up for Halloween or cos playing, who actually goes around fighting with three swords (one in the mouth!) or carrying an intricate cello case with a sword hidden inside? Yeah, hardly possible, though I personally would really like to see some ordinary athletic person in glasses turn into a winged angel with long platinum hair and killer projectile abilities.

Vampire Knight, Blood+, Ouran High School Host Club, Bleach, Death Note, One Piece, Naruto, Prince of Tennis
A collage of fangirly objects in various anime and manga. The characters include Kaname Kuran, Tamaki Suou, Urahara Kisuke, Haji, Yuki Sohma, L, Roronoa Zoro, Hatake Kakashi, Kyouya Ootori, Oshitari Yuushi, and Kuchiki Byakuya.

It doesn’t stop at just fiction, however. From movies (Oliver Wood and Cedric Diggory in Harry Potter), to manga (Kaname Kuran and Aido from Vampire Knight), to anime (Kyouya Ootori and Tamaki Suou from "Ouran High School Host Club"), to TV series (Robin of Locksley and Will Scarlett from "Robin Hood"), to JDrama (Tsukasa Domyouji and Rui Hanazawa in "Hana Yori Dango"), to IRC HOL (Matt Whisp and Mark Mandrake anyone? *coughs*) fangirls come in all shapes and sizes. You can even see some of the fangirls in action in interviews conducted by Maya Winters in her previous TV reviews. It looks like the fangirling phenomena will refuse to subside, considering the amount of entertainment people get from reading and watching their favorite characters strut their stuff.