2016 at “me + richard armitage” in review

The amount of traffic to this site was roughly the same as it was in 2015 (both were significantly down from 2014). Here were the 2015 “most viewed” posts. Without further ado, here are the “most viewed” ones published in 2016:

1. “In case you missed the tweets Richard Armitage just deleted,” June 15, 2016. This seems to have been some mixup in relationship to Armitage’s annual Cybersmile push and the beginning of work on that movie that didn’t happen. I don’t know if we ever figured it out.

2. “September afternoon in the park,” September 12, 2016. Richard Armitage and Lee Pace sighted in Washington Square Park.

3. “So who runs @RCArmitage?” June 12, 2016. Expresses my frustration over Armitage’s deletion of tweets after the Pulse Club shooting in Orlando.

4. “Berlin Station, episode 1, first impressions [spoilers],” September 8, 2016. Reaction to the surprise release of the first of two episodes of Berlin Station.

5. “And here’s the missive,” March 5, 2016. Richard Armitage’s tweet of his experiences while visiting the refugee center in Spandau, Berlin.

6. “Hmmm. Hot day,” July 31, 2016. Picture of Richard Armitage’s wardrobe malfunction at the Television Critics’ Association panel in Los Angeles.

7. “BREAKING: Audible announces Richard Armitage’s next audiobook,” April 1, 2016. Annual April Fool’s Day joke.

8. “Hmmm,” September 13, 2016. More from Washington Square Park.

9. “And the tweet about deleting is … deleted,” July 17, 2016. Richard Armitage thinks he can stop conversations, apparently. We weren’t so sure.

10. “This is rich, isn’t it. Rich?” January 16, 2016. Marlise Boland complains about Richard Armitage’s fans.

In case you’re sensing a theme or themes, here, eleven was also about who’s responsible for Armitage’s tweet deletions, and twelve was my response to Armitage’s statement about the U.S. presidential election. So yeah — the big thing was Richard Armitage’s statements and especially his tweet deletions. And again, from these priorities, and similarly to last year, one would never know that I blogged every week about Berlin Station, sometimes more than once, collated tweets about Love, Love, Love every night, blogged repeatedly about Love, Love, Love msyelf, and discussed Armitage’s performance in it. Made a special trip to Toronto see Brain on Fire and describe the film, even.

There might be a bit to be said about “to which material the fandom responds most avidly” and why — there is certainly a premium for writing something critical, although I wrote dozens and dozens of positive posts about Armitage this year. However we feel about the content of what gets written, though, I think what we can say definitely is that slightly two years after Richard Armitage began to tweet, what he decides he wants to discuss at any given time (whether he wants the theme to persist or whether he changes his mind again and deletes his statement) has taken over the fandom’s attention. This was true before Twitter as well, when his Christmas messages would take over discussion for a week or ten days, but thanks to his enhanced presence in social media (this year we got him on FB and instagram as well) now we have Richard Armitage constantly with us.

Last year I wrote a post about the status of my fandom (2015 was a brutal year for me as a fan) and left off here, intending to write more. Hopefully I can pick that up soon (although I’ve got a lot of other stuff that’s burning to be written in my writerly pocket, so to speak, and my seventh anniversary in this space is coming up, so I’m feeling more contemplative than usual, I suppose). Things were a lot better for most of 2016, or I’d come to a realization about my reaction to certain things, but wow. The election post just about pushed me off the screen. I think if I can survive that level of anger, I might be able to survive anything.

Meanwhile: thanks to all the fans who have come here to read and comment and make this blog a place where I look forward to reading what’s happened while I’ve been away.

~ by Servetus on January 3, 2017.

17 Responses to “2016 at “me + richard armitage” in review”

  1. Interesting. I wonder if the traffic is down because so many of RA’s projects were inaccessible to most fans – I know I didn’t comment on Hannibal or BS because I either couldn’t or didn’t want to watch them ( I have since seen BS but too late to join in discussion) Most of us couldn’t see Urban or LLL either, which left little to discuss beyond his Twitter gaffes and the odd candid shot.

    If I were his agent I would be looking for a good BBC drama that will be distributed worldwide for 2017 because he is fast needing to get some more exposure ( unless of course he wants to be less visible, which I somehow doubt)

    • I hadn’t thought about that, actually, but it’s a good point. The discussion about BSt were limited to those who had access or were willing to pirate practically in real time. (Although judging from statistics, the level of interest in BSt also fell off among people in those categories).

    • I strongly agree. Sometimes I wanted to comment but my feelings have been so mixed, 2016 has been a terrible year personally and RA has been an escape in the past but there has not been a lot to say that has not sounded as though I was moaning .

      • well, it’s not so much about commenting. I love every comment, of course. But only 5% of visitors leave comments and most visitors visit fairly regularly (the statistics suggest this as well, that there is a rough core of readers who read each post). “Most viewed” measures the posts that attract attention period. A lot of people only see this blog in Twitter — which suggests that if they visit it’s because they are interested in these topics but not other ones.

  2. Danke! Danke! Danke! 🙂

  3. I would have to say for both 2015 and 2016, my reaction was about the same as it was on the initial reading of them. The laughter or my reaction of feeling some things were ridiculous or annoying hasn’t changed in the last year or two. The pattern of what’s popular is surprising. With all the posts you write of substance, it’s those that get a quick, emotional reaction that soared to the top. Sorry about that. I also apologize for not being able to keep up with everything in the last few months in regard to blogs, as well as Twitter and Facebook. There was just so much going on with Richard between the different projects, the nightly picture postings from the play, all the tweeting for BS, Brain On Fire… I did the best I could trying to keep up, but it wasn’t good enough. I’m still trying to go back and catch up. I know that doesn’t make the difference in your statistics, it’s just my way of saying some of us care about your everyday posts, not just the ones that cause a feeding frenzy.

    • I don’t want to create the impression that I care about the statistics as such, and this post wasn’t intended as a plea for more comments. People should comment as they feel led, and honestly, I sometimes have a hard time keeping up with comments. Being a fan shouldn’t seem like a job. It’s more that I’m interested in what attracts the most attention and what that suggests about the future of the blog (in combination with my own preferences). I think I’m not the only blogger who’s observed recently that the incentive to write detailed or substantive posts is evaporating insofar as fewer people comment on them — they don’t even seem to read them. The audience for what I provide is changing and eventually that may change what I provide, or else change how I see the audience or what I want to do / write.

      • It also may not have everything to do with a level of interest so much as so many sources of information between various bloggers, Facebook, Twitter, tumbler, Instagram… Fans may be getting divided up into smaller and smaller pieces of the pie than they were in the early 2000s. So much has changed since then.

        • Actually, there are numerically fewer sources of information now than there were five years ago. Forums are approaching silence, livejournal as good as dead, blogosphere contracted drastically (by something like 2/3), only about a dozen people max commenting at imdb, tumblr drastically contracted and/or people not using the tags, and Twitter is less active as well (particularly in contrast to 2014). Even the smaller groups on FB are starting to wither although a few of the larger ones are still going strong (more power to them).

          I think the difference is that there has been so much information since about 2012 that people have decided to focus on that; news in itself or pictures is sufficient to fulfill their needs. It will be interesting to see, if Armitage’s career slows down to the pre-Hobbit level, if the fan discussions revive (when there is less news to absorb and more time to think / talk).

          • Well, that’s an interesting phenomenon.

            • The thing is that discussion fuels discussion; people are unsatisified by things they find in one place or need more than they can get from it and move elsewhere to find what they want. It’s counter-intuitive, but back when there were eighteen or so active blogs about Armitage, discussion was also much more lively. (Not that it’s poor now — just the multiplicity of venues kept things going and in turn attracted more people.) But those blogs weren’t competing with a near constant news stream.

              Similarly, Twitter was much more diverse before Armitage joined it. As long as there was no prospect that he’d appear there, the conversations could be very detailed and wide-ranging. But once he appeared, he became the most important thing that happened there, fandom-wise; people began hanging off his words and the news; and discussions about whether it was appropriate to say certain things in his virtual presence intensified, leading to destructive policing.

  4. It’s interesting to see last year vs this year. I was really only lurking sporadically before 2016. And I think maybe the first time I commented here was during some of the tweet/delete sessions in the Spring. It was just so frustrating to try to see what was going on only to have tweets be deleted for some unknown reason. With the Berlin Station posts, I am saving them to read if/when I can finally watch the whole series legally! Then I can come back here for some analysis and read the comments too.

    • It is super frustrating (it makes you think you don’t know what is going on in the fandom unless you hang on your computer 24 hours a day and no one wants to do that).

      You can still comment on old posts if you like. I still answer them if I find something to say. If there’s some kind of coherent rebroadcast of Bst this year I may repost those posts, too, in case someone else wants to comment.

  5. “I know that doesn’t make the difference in your statistics, it’s just my way of saying some of us care about your everyday posts, not just the ones that cause a feeding frenzy.” 🙂 I agree and should add:
    It is not the popularity of your articles that has to guide you in your next choices of comments. Otherwise your blog is fast going to lose of its intrinsic interest. Next to the factual article, has to stay your feature articles, where a reflection, a deeper analysis is expressed.
    I save time to read the play LLL in English, offered at Christmas as present. So I can return to your papers, for a deeper study of your work, act after act. It is not the vision of the play only once live in NY, with my family, that can give an exact image of what I assisted. If some readers remain on-surface, look for only the immediate emotion, the scoop and if these readers do not want to make the effort to work (a foreign language,
    a subject of meditation..) they are free . I do not judge, but other fans look for something else. Your blog has several levels of reading and several windows and doors to apprehend it. Be yourself Servetus , only your limits, only one schizophrenic level!

    • I apologize for creating the impression that statistics matter to me in any absolute sense; I’m not blogging for hits (and if web traffic was my primary goal, I’d be writing a different blog — starting with using better SEO and blogging on my own domain name instead of a free blog). However, I’ve been a member of this fandom for approaching seven years now, and the changes (whether they are created by changes in social media, changes in Armitage’s career, or wherever they come from) do interest me.

      Of course the deeper reflections / analyses are of interest to me. They are not easy to write, so I wouldn’t continue to write them if there weren’t some compelling reason inside myself.

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