It's Popular, Now It Sucks

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.

"Poseurs! I hated Zoidberg before it was cool."

Bender, Futurama

There's only one thing worse than people not watching your favorite show: people actually watching it.

You'd think that your favorite artist making it big would be something to celebrate. To a large segment of modern youth, and to the eternal critic, however, a wide fanbase does not mean the media in question appeals to a lot of people, but rather that it is low-IQ trash with No Soul that has "Become Commercial" and "Sold Out", possibly to the Marketing Machine or even Satan Himself. This results in a subsection of Fan Dumb and an extreme form of the Unpleasable Fanbase.

In some cases, it's not an unreasonable complaint if the quality of the work begins to suffer as a result of the artist's popularity. If the artist begins to squander their talent or water down what made it interesting to make it acceptable to the Lowest Common Denominator, or Pandering to the Base rather than expanding themselves as artists in the process, then it's not unreasonable that the fans might start crying foul. Likewise, if the artist becomes a raging egomaniacal tool who believes that they can treat their fans like dirt and don't need to listen to their editors, things might go downhill fast. Perhaps their fame will rise beyond a level they can cope with. On another, more subjective note, the popularity and acclaim of an actually solid artist or work may rise to hyperbolic, unwarranted heights, which can have a negative effect if the hype cannot possibly match the reality. Where live performances are involved, larger, less intimate venues will generally be required - perhaps a situation in which the performers don’t come across so well—and audience demographics may change, the newcomers behaving differently to the older fans, causing an overall change in atmosphere. And finally, some things are better in small doses, in which case the last thing you want is to be over-exposed to it.

However, in too many cases, the cry of "It's Popular, Now It Sucks!" is more about snobbery than anything else. When the artist was a small name or a cult favorite, being one of their fans felt like being in an exclusive little club, but now membership has been opened up to the 'sheep', the original fans may feel a lot less special. Alternatively, some critics seem to enjoy the attention that comes from criticizing something popular, or feeling more intelligent and superior about being the only ones capable of possessing the high standards not to "follow the herd". Some also seem to believe that artists should work and create art solely for the sake of art, without consideration of anything so uncouth as critical, popular or especially financial reward -- forgetting (or perhaps not even realizing) artists still need to put food on the table and pay rent. In these cases, it might be more accurate to say that when these fans say the creator should create art "for the sake of art", what they actually mean is that the creator should create art "for the sake of my ego".

In either case, this elitist tendency essentially turns Fandom into a speculations market—if you like it before it's popular, or if you hate something because it's popular, only then does your profit margin in coolness points amount to anything when you fling away your shares in the fandom in horror of the masses. (Incidentally, note the jargon here. "Speculations market". "Profit margin". "Shares". Ironic, no?) Of course, if it never Sells Out, no one will get the name recognition when you say "I liked X before it was popular." Ironically, fandoms of little-known works almost always expand by word of mouth -- the very reason it became popular is that these people kept talking about how cool it was, and enjoying acclaim from being the one "in the know" about a good work before anyone else. (Which they lose when it becomes popular.) For further irony value, these snobs often claim to be X's original and/or true fans—but, in dropping X like a hot potato after X becomes popular, they actually reveal themselves to be fair weather fans (or, if you prefer, foul weather fans), since if they truly were a fan of X, then they would be supportive of X becoming popular.

As you can see on the quote, sometimes people only just trash something that's popular because they want to be accepted by their peers—you'd be surprised how many people actually do trash stuff that's popular may have only read an opinion leader's review no matter how flawed and marred with Hate Dumb.

A variant of this trope is the cry that "It's Popular, so it Sucks". To these people, the only way a work can become popular is by being dumb, "safe" and middle-of-the-road, and therefore mediocre. (Sometimes however, lesser known works are prone to criticism for some people simply by virtue of obscurity, believing that anything that isn't mainstream is "too weird". However that's another story entirely.)

Many of these works that get this tend to get subjected to the fallacy that "the more mainstream something is, the more critical people are of it." High profile works in particular are prone to getting picked apart, while lesser known works are looked on much more favorably, with their flaws mostly overlooked, or perhaps even granted immunity to any form of criticism in any way.

Related to Newbie Boom and Lowest Common Denominator. A subtrope of Fan Dumb and Hate Dumb. Often overlaps with They Changed It, Now It Sucks, Ruined FOREVER, and Hype Backlash. Compare with Three Chords and the Truth and Opinion Myopia. Contrast with Quality by Popular Vote. If this backlash is due to actual deterioration after hitting it big rather than pretentiousness, see Protection From Editors. Japandering is sometimes done when the artist is specifically trying to avoid this. When musicians hold this opinion for one of their own songs, it's a Black Sheep Hit. Differs from Hype Aversion in that it's not so much fear of crazy fans as it is scorn for the proles.

Don't worry, though, because The Man Is Sticking It to the Man. And let's not forget that according to these folks, Popular Art is not "True Art".

Examples of It's Popular, Now It Sucks include:

In General

  • Any form of entertainment ever. A lot of it stems from envy. ("My novel's better than that! Why wasn't I published?!" "But I drew something completely original, why does this page have more views?!", "My idea's better! Why are they getting all the recognition!") It's not uncommon to find Sour Grapes about it all. ("Well I never liked that magazine in the first place!", "deviantART is the Lowest Common Denominator ANYWAY.)
    • Unless that is you self-publish...then you're an Indie and either respected as a god or are given acclaim because you didn't "sell out" to the masses.
  • Any form of entertainment made in the United States of America. Movies, shows, name it. If it's made in Hollywood or Broadway, it automatically sucks to these people. Since many forms of American media tend to get widely popular both inside and outside of America, it's no surprise that this trope will often pop up. Oftentimes it's not uncommon to hear the No True Scotsman fallacy being thrown around...
  • This seems to happen with any form of entertainment that catches on with teenage girls. Even if something was liked and respected before it had fangirls, it is written off as valueless the moment the squeeing starts. If a form of entertainment is manufactured with this demographic in mind from the beginning, it is immediately shunned and becomes an object of ridicule. Whether this attitude stems from this trope or the idea that anything enjoyed by young females is automatically inferior is anyone's guess.
  • When it comes to anything that is popular for a long time, haters brush it off as "a passing fad", yet the whole meaning behind the word fad is something that quickly grows popular and quickly dies down as fast, whereas something popular for a long time would not be considered a fad technically.
  • Nostalgia plays a big factor in this. Even if the artist or work hasn't actually gone mainstream, it gets more popular and has a larger fan base after it's been around for a while simply because more people have now heard of it. This inevitably leads to the belief that an artist's earlier work is always better than their newer stuff or earlier entries in a series are always better than newer ones
    • Similarly, a long-running show, book series, series of movies, etc. will be assumed to decline in quality as the series goes along, i.e. Book #5 must be worse than Book #1 because it came after. In certain cases, a large number of entries in the series may taint the whole series, as this signifies that the creator is a hack who's just churning content out. Continued popularity is written off as just being fanboys or the brainless masses keeping ticket/book sales or viewing numbers up
  • The Internet has had a huge impact on this trope, since it's given non-mainstream artists and works a ton more exposure. It's next to impossible to remain unknown with numerous blogs and forums dedicated to you or your works, when there's numerous videos of them or about them on YouTube and other sites. This often overlaps with the nostalgia factor with claims that pre-Internet era works and artists were better.
  • Any sort of joke or Memetic Mutation will, after a certain saturation point, cease to be funny in certain circles because everyone's heard it before and will be sick of it.
  • Any time a franchise from any media or art form gets adapted into a movie or TV show, Box Office and TV Ratings would suggest that a good number of people enjoy them, but you wouldn't know it from all the people screeching in message boards: "It's popular now! That sucks!", regardless of whether it was mainstream and extremely popular before, leading to cases of "It's MORE Popular, Now It Sucks".
  • Endorsements. A celebrity or a character appearing in an advertisement to promote a good or service usually seals the deal on them being in this trope. Often they may invoke Japandering to avoid it. A type of Double Standard, since Sports stars seem to get more of a pass on this.
  • Some tropers really have a tendency to put bad tropes on popular shows/works/characters/etc they didn't like. Sometimes the tropes fit, sometimes they don't and are only shoehorned in.
  • Fans can be put off by the Periphery Demographic because something is liked by the "wrong" kind of people. Parodied wonderfully by Portlandia here.
  • Plenty of people invert this trope, ignoring obscure media, believing that anything unpopular is "weird" and "geeky." For them, It's Unpopular, So It Sucks. A good example of this mentality is the Pop Culture Snob on the Hate Dumb page, as well as the chain restaurant fans below.

Anime and Manga

In General

  • If you wish to invoke this trope, ask around on any forum, even one dedicated to Manga and Anime what the worst they've ever read or seen was. Your responses will very very rarely mention an anime/manga that wasn't popular or well received even in Japan like Bakugan, or the stuff that was actually canceled before it could be localized like Bakugan was. At least nine out of ten responses will name stuff like Bleach, Code Geass, Dragon Ball Z, Death Note, Fullmetal Alchemist, Gundam, Naruto, Neon Genesis Evangelion, Inuyasha, Pokémon, Sailor Moon...notice a pattern? Yep. Stuff that is popular in Japan, and outside of Japan.
    • Generally pretty much everything that becomes popular in Western anime fandom is guaranteed to be hit with a combination of this and Opinion Myopia. If you don't want your show that you like to receive heavy amounts of criticism from some part of the fanbase, it's best that it stays far under the radar.
    • This also is related to Import Filter. If you asked a Japanese person what the worst anime or manga they ever saw was, they'd probably respond with a series you never heard of unless they are of the same school of thought as you. Know why? Because that series was never imported, it was never translated because people don't see any worth in translating something that they thought was So Bad It's Horrible. Remember that for all the Hatedom that many popular animes have, they were only fansubbed because somebody liked it and wanted to share it.
  • Dubbing vs. Subbing often ties in with this. There are plenty of elitist anime watchers who only like a series until it's licensed in America. Their usual reasoning is that it's only cool when "true" anime fans can access the series by downloading fansubs (even though a dub and official sub supports the series), but once the series is licensed a bunch of "idiots" can now watch it to try to be part of the cool club.
  • You have people insisting that all anime sucks nowadays whereas the stuff in The Eighties and Nineties was good. This is pretty much Nostalgia Filter meets this - there were plenty of anime series in the 1980s and 1990s that weren't very good, especially considering that it was much more difficult to import more shows because of the Animation Age Ghetto being very strong at the time. (Even Steven Spielberg said that Akira wasn't marketable.)


  • Akira has managed to avoid this fate, despite that most people are actually familiar with the old dub ("KA-NAY-DAAAAAAAAAAAAHH!!!") that, strangely, neither Otomo or Macek themselves agreed with. If anything, the only It's Popular, Now It Sucks that Akira is getting is the 2001 redub, which you would ironically think would be better received. (More thorough translation, they actually know how to pronounce Kaneda's name, and the fact that the 80s dub got a PG-13 rating thanks in part to the Animation Age Ghetto while the 2001 redub is rated R...)
  • Many fans of Axis Powers Hetalia were displeased by the influx of many new fans brought by the successful anime adaptation. (Funnily enough most of them started complaining when the fandom was already huge.)
  • Bleach. There was once a time when it was a niche shonen series, and was only known by people who read scanlations from a popular scanlation site. Back then, pretty much any and all feedback were about how frickin' awesome it was, and how it's a shame that it's so obscure and no-named. And then, it got big. It's amazing how many countless people (including the fans who liked it back when it was small) have changed their tone to "I hate Bleach, it sucks because it's popular."
  • Death Note fans are not too thrilled about their series being dubbed, not so much out of fear of the dub's alterations (as there are very few) as fear that the series will be ruined by an influx of * shudder* people who watch Adult Swim.
    • Dub argument aside, Death Note in general has fallen victim to this. Back when it was new, Death Note was the greatest series in years, all the cool kids liked it, and making references to Death Note was the best way to flaunt your otaku elitism. Then the anime came along and Death Note became super-popular, and so now the trendy thing among the otaku elite is, of course, bashing it and making fun of all the stupid Death Note fanspawn.
  • Dragon Ball Z befell this wonderful fate during the late 1990s and early 2000s. Arguably one of the things that got anime into the mainstream, within five years or so it was very popular to bash it horribly. Some would argue that Naruto is basically the same thing—massively popular until it overplayed its welcome, and then is met with a thousand fiery hells.
  • Some fans of the Haruhi Suzumiya light novels did not take it kindly when their semi-obscure books were gonna be adapted into an anime and bring in new fans who never even heard of the books. Some of those fans also got pissed when it became a surprise hit and a Cash Cow Franchise.
  • There was once a time in which Inuyasha; as well as pretty much every Rumiko Takahashi series, had a fanbase that was free to exist in public. But then, they became popular - Immediately, saying you like a Takahashi series nowadays, especially Inuyasha is tantamount to Suicide by Cop.
  • Sailor Moon was once considered a gateway anime in the 90s and an icon of feminism and girl power. Then when people realized everyone was watching it (especially the dubbed version), it became trendy to bash it for being "kiddie" or sexist. Furthermore, despite the fact that many men used to be proud to claim themselves as fans, you're pretty much required to call it gay now if you're a dude.
  • Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann is starting to head this way thanks to extreme Hype Backlash.
  • Vampire Knight started as a modest shoujo manga about teenage vampires, until it inexplicably became one of the most popular manga in America. Now many fans of modest shoujo avoid it like the plague due to its rampant popularity.


  • Sadly, Art itself is very subjected to this trope far too much. Sometimes, it's done out of jealousy. Just got a creation of yours noticed? Congratulations—you've either sold out to the masses of pretentious waffle makers, or have sold out to the Lowest Common Denominator. Thankfully it's not entirely hopeless... some people actually will congratulate you in getting something of yours on display so people can see it if this happens. But it may be hard to appreciate them with jealous artists saying, "Well I can do better" or "My stuff is too sophisticated for them."
  • If you get featured on the front page of Deviant ART, you better hope it's not a piece of Fan Art you drew once because you were bored... because if it is, then expect to get hatred towards Deviant ART for "not featuring an original work" and you for "copying" or "Selling out to the masses" and "only doing it to get more pageviews".
    • Deviant ART is claimed by serious artists to be "too much of a social forum to make good art". Considering that art is something that HAS to been seen by people outside of a tiny circle to be appreciated and eventually to be considered a masterpiece by any critic, even if it is on a heavily social art website, complaints still occur.
    • Also extremely obvious and common when it comes to the Daily Deviations, Deviousness Awards, Contests or, really, any form of recognition. For the 30ish DD's awarded daily, at least half of them will get a spree of comments along the lines of 'Pfft, why did THIS get a DD? * insert unknown artist here* submits better work every day!'. With less classy grammar, of course. Oh, and the reactions about the winners of Contests has to be seen to be believed, especially the popular/featured Contests.
  • Any art style that becomes popular is subject to this trope, with anime being the whipping boy in the west.
  • Ask an art historian what s/he thinks of Leonardo da Vinci or any other Renaissance master.
  • Even serious art sites like Concept Art can become subject to this trope. While less vicious than say, Deviant ART, artists who make the jump from 'just posters' to 'established professionals' can expect to lose a couple web-friends out of jealousy or the belief that the artist in question is pandering to a mainstream audience.

Comic Books

  • Comic books in general fit this trope, but adapted comics especially. Any time a comic gets adapted into a movie or TV show, Box Office and TV Ratings would suggest that a good number of people enjoy them, but you wouldn't know it from all the people screeching in message boards: "It's popular now! That sucks!"
    • Many times fans become bitter at the idea of a character or setting becoming mainstream via a movie or show because they feel these newcomers are not 'true' fans. This often leads to an oddly protective attitude where the old guard feels like it has to protect the property from the newbies.
    • A common rallying cause for the aforementioned old guard comes when the original media takes a shift after a movie release to bring the series back to something of an earlier status quo. This is often intentional so that new fans (brought in by the film adaptation, for example) can settle into the original media without too many jarring changes.
  • The Batman series:
    • The Dark Knight Saga's explosive popularity caused Batman to become a more popular cultural icon than ever. Many long-time Batman fans feel spited by the Bat's new-found mainstream status, resorting to the It's Popular, Now It Sucks mantra. They must be extremely good at holding grudges for decades on end though, since Batman has been a "mainstream" cultural icon since the 60s.
    • In-universe example. Batman: Fortunate Son. One of the main characters was a famous musician who applied this trope to himself, feeling that his fame prevented him from keeping it "real". This didn't work too well; in his typically savage review of the comic, Linkara had some choice things to say about this trope in general.
  • Deadpool has been gaining lots of popularity ever since Wade Wilson's short appearance in X Men Origins Wolverine, so popular he has 5 running series currently, and was featured on almost every variant cover for the week of 27th Feb 2010. Of course, the original fans are not happy about having Deadpool being whored out by Marvel and having him shoved down everyone's throat.
  • Geoff Johns tends to attract this on various forums. The trope seems to apply because the negative posts generally don't seem to say much besides "stop saying he's so good! he's not!" and rarely contain any actual criticism aside from simple nit-picking.
  • Just about every fan of Jhonen Vasquez's comics (like Johnny the Homicidal Maniac) from "back in the day" seems to hate and look down on fans who found out about Jhonen's work through his cartoon show, Invader Zim, a show that—being a cartoon on a big name children's cable channel—was accessible to a much larger and more varied audience than his early comics.
  • The comic community site Scans Daily seems to have a rule of "the more mainstream it is, the more critical we are." High-profile events in particular seem to be prone to getting picked apart, while lesser known comics are looked on much more favorably.
  • Some fans of Watchmen (and possibly Alan Moore himself) began sneering at the thought of someone reading the comic because of the movie. And it happened as the trailers apparently caused the comic to recently become a top-seller. Which is, say it with us now, a good thing.
    • Moore really hates being popular. "The Killing Joke" was not intended to be canon by him, but DC liked it so much or it was so popular that it was made canon. Some of his fans seem to claim DC is "lazy" for doing so.
  • Hellblazer was mostly sheltered from this due to the adaptation being titled Constantine, confusing potential fans seeking out a John Constantine that wouldn't exist in the books anyway. This complaint arose around the movie from the time Keanu Reeves was attached, but abandoning the entire character in favor of the safest bankable mainstream star came across as a deliberate snub of the pre-existing market for the movie ("We don't need your money, you losers, we got our moneymaker right here!")
  • In-universe example in Nemi, when Nemi declines to sell a record she loves to a customer, out of fear that it will become mainstream.

Fan Works

  • A Fritz Fraundorf Fanfic parodies this tendency in music, with a music store clerk who only likes unpopular bands. The instant one band he's been promoting is talked about on the radio in the store, he begins to trash them.


In General

  • Let's just start off by saying this: If a movie rakes in a lot of dough (especially if the film ends up on this list), it's sure to be labeled as a Cliché Storm filled movie with nothing but "Mindless" Action and/or "Mindless" Fan Service that isn't True Art and made for the Lowest Common Denominator...Even if they didn't actually watch the movie. Almost no exceptions (you won't find many people making said complaints about 2001: A Space Odyssey or The Godfather).
  • It's not just amongst fans either. People have noticed that in most recent years, the majority of Oscar winners and nominees for best picture have been both low budget and low box-office. It was the exclusion of well-received successes such as WALL-E and The Dark Knight Saga that caused the Academy to expand the pool of nominees from 5 to 10.
  • Not just the films themselves but the people involved with them. Pretty much almost any Hollywood producer, director, or actor, upon achieving a level of popularity and fame will be accused of this.
  • Remakes get this treatment in droves. Even if the movie was just as good if not better than the previous film, you wouldn't know that from all the people screeching in message boards: "Ruined FOREVER" and "I Liked It Better When It Sucked". It's hard to distinguish remakes that were good compared to remakes that actually did suck because of this. In particular, this is especially true with American remakes of foreign films... Prepare yourself for The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo...
    • American remakes of foreign films often elicit criticism because the rest of the world feels that it's arrogant and unnecessary to shot-for-shot redo something so soon after it came out. If it's bad, then it will overshadow the good original version. Alternately, the remake can be good and still get this response because people are annoyed that American audiences flat-out refuse to watch anything with subtitles or accents. Given that it could hurt said country's film industry, this is somewhat understandable.
  • Sequels. Not only does a movie being popular make it suck, but if the producers dare to continue its story, then it's just total garbage.
  • Many actors that star in blockbuster films suffer from this, including Seth Rogen and Shia LaBeouf.


  • Austin Powers is this combined with a bit of Hype Backlash too, as surely you'd be annoyed that EVERYONE was reciting the catchphrases by the time the second movie came out.
  • A Christmas Story suffers this, largely due to over-exposure from the 24-hour marathon of the movie that's run every year at or around Christmas.
  • The Dark Knight Saga has suffered this recently. Considering it's the 8th highest-grossing movie of all time, it seems that the higher the popularity, the higher the suck.
  • The original Batman (1989) managed to avoid this, if only because Tim Burton's movie was so massively hyped and generated so much controversy that it was bound to attract the interest of just about everyone, whether they liked it or not. As near as one can tell, Batman energized three very large, vocal and/or influential sectors of the viewing public: young adults, who delighted in Burton's "hipster" aesthetic and edgy humor; film critics (most of them older people) who were offended or even outraged by that same edginess and only watched the movie because it was so huge they just couldn't ignore it; and hardcore Batman fans, who were just so thrilled to finally get to see a true cinematic treatment of their hero that they didn't really care (or at least didn't care too much) that Burton's take was so radically different. (Incidentally, Batman ended up attracting a surprise fourth demographic: children, many of whom thought the movie was a lot of fun even though it was intended primarily for adults.) Generally, It's Popular Now It Sucks only applies to works that enjoy a moderately high level of popularity. If a work becomes insanely popular, as Batman did in '89, it turns into a phenomenon so awesome that no amount of backlash can truly hurt it.
  • Donnie Darko, when it suddenly went from being a brilliant-but-weird movie that was buried in obscurity after 9/11, to a massive cult phenomenon that every teenager has seen. Somewhat ironic, in that it mostly became popular via word-of-mouth and Vindicated by Cable.
  • Halloween H20: Twenty Years Later, which is seen as the "sell out" of the series, by some.
  • After The Dark Knight Saga, Christopher Nolan's next film Inception received a similar treatment. After the initial wave of glowing praise, the film garnered its fair share of detractors. The main reasons given by viewers who dislike the film are one or more of the following: it's too complex, it's not as complex as everyone makes it out to be, it plays with an idea but doesn't develop it, there are (or seem to be) contradictions within the film regarding the "rules" of dreaming and that it attempts to pander to an action film fanbase with its spectacle, slighting fans of serious cyber punk science fiction and psychological thriller films.
  • James Cameron has made many critically acclaimed films, but it seems that to many on the internet and even in TV Tropes, the more viewers his films get, the worse the film is. If it's popular enough, the film is placed in the same class as a Michael Bay or Uwe Boll film. The most notable examples:
    • Titanic at first actually got a decent amount of public and critical acclaim. The backlash set in both after it was clear it was going to make hundreds of millions, becoming the highest-grossing film of all time until Avatar came out, and the loads of Oscar nominations and wins it got.
    • When Avatar came out, it had a skyrocket of public acclaim and defining the standard of the 3D Movie, with many proclaiming 'Oh man, Avatar was awesome!', only for about a few months later when it became the highest-grossing film of all time, a huge hatedom came out and proclaimed it as one of the worst films of all time while quite a few of it's fandom changed their mind and stated 'Yeah, it's just Pocahontas in space'. Conversely, The Hurt Locker; which was directed by Cameron's ex-wife Kathryn Bigelow, was Left for Dead as a box office flop until somehow, it came out of nowhere around awards time to huge critical acclaim, with many proclaiming, 'Avatar is Lame. This is Best Picture right here'. Its momentum would be enough to upset and punch out Avatar at the Oscars and the BAFTAs, including the Best Picture award for both (and making it the lowest-grossing film of all time to win Best Picture), leaving Avatar to only beat Hurt Locker in the Golden Globes.
  • The Artist suddenly got this. Despite winning over 13 Best Picture awards from various critics groups, the Golden Globes, the BAFTA, and the Oscars, plus of course a 97% Rotten Tomatoes score, the film is now considered as overrated and not the best film of the year by some people.
  • Kevin Smith. Some fans have accused him of being a sell out, a label he has no problem with. Most recently, people accuse Smith of being a sellout because he directed Cop Out for a studio from a script he didn't write. This, despite the fact that he took a significant pay cut to ensure the film could have the R-rating he thought it deserved.
  • The Matrix collector's edition contains a meta-example. The alternate commentaries in it are explained as existing because every other DVD commentary is always the cast and crew commenting on the development of the film, and a film like theirs deserves commentaries by college philosophers and movie critics instead.
  • The Nightmare Before Christmas. Some fans feel this way because of it becoming a Cash Cow Franchise. It doesn't help many buy Nightmare merch just to look Goth or Emo, not because they actually seen the movie. Then add the Hate Dumb that thinks the movie sucks because they've seen the merch but not actually seeing the movie, and you get some pissed-off fans. Luckily, this is a Vocal Minority.
  • Peter Jackson. Full swing after making the movie adaptations of The Lord of the Rings. You'd be amazed at how many of his "fans" despise the fact he made a film that cost more than a million or so and look down on fans that were brought into the fold via The Lord of the Rings. Claims that he "sold out", "lost his touch", and "became a hack" are common in certain circles of his older fanbase.
  • Scott Pilgrim vs. the World was subject to an angry rant on a popular community discussing comics. The individual in question seemed to be incensed that Hollywood was actually making movies for geeks now, instead of mocking them. Not only did he hate the film itself, but he hated the people it was about, made by and for. The term "hipster" was thrown around willy-nilly. He got more and more vitriolic as he realized his was a minority opinion, and was eventually banned when he said something untoward.
  • Star Trek: This Onion News Network video pretty accurately reflects the attitude of a certain type of Star Trek fan towards the 2009 movie. They must be extremely good at holding grudges for decades on end, since Star Trek has been a cultural icon for decades. Luckily despite the stereotype, surprisingly otherwise averted by the Trek fanbase, as discussions and polls on the TrekBBS consistently show that about 80 to 90% of the fans like or love the new movie.
  • Star Wars has suffered through this, especially when the prequels came out.
  • Tim Burton. As with The Nightmare Before Christmas example above, you can expand this to pretty much anything done by him. Early in his career, he gained a cult following, most of his early films did good, but not huge numbers at the box office. However, as his films became more popular, the Hate Dumb grew and grew, in large part do to his popularity with the Goth and Emo crowd, and much because of this trope. It seems to be mostly due to the misconception that he and his movies are all whiny, mopey, self-indulgent navel-gazers, missing the part where he's actually pretty funny and doesn't take himself that seriously at all. Just watch this interview. "Could you roll the I.V. in here? I'm feeling a bit...faint."
  • Certain parts of the Transformers fandom, over the year or so before the release of the 2007 live-action movie, preemptively expressed the sentiment that "It's going to be popular! That sucks!" Everyone else was rather confused. It becomes very silly when people accuse Transformers, a franchise that was created specifically to sell toys, of selling out.
Of course, this being Transformers fandom, a Broken Base if ever there was one, there's also a very vocal segment that runs counter to this trope, and cheered every time it topped charts. Transformers is somewhat a subversion as more fans were happy with the movies success as it made the franchise relevant again in the eyes of the public. More relevance means more plastic (and even better, more die-cast metal), which has always made 'True Fans' happy even if they despised the related series.
    • On the other hand, part of the reason why Transformers Generation 1 purists hate the movies so much is because of their popularity; they're basically pissed that more people are familiar with the hyper-detailed CGI Transformers starring in big, dumb action movies than their original, not-very-detailed cartoon incarnations. (Fans of more widely praised incarnations such as Beast Wars, Transformers Animated, and Transformers Prime also react this way if they dislike the movies).


  • Often inverted for Gluten-Free diets. Outside of places like California or Boulder, CO, if you had a gluten allergy in the 90s...good luck finding gluten-free stuff outside of expensive specialty stores or health food stores! Now that Gluten-free diet has become a fad diet (or that people are actually more aware of Gluten-free diets), those with Gluten allergies can actually go out to eat more often and actually not have to shop at expensive health food stores. (Course, those are still pretty much the best places to go if you have a gluten allergy, but still.)
However other fad diets this has pretty much played through, some of them aren't actually meant to be taken seriously and are often misunderstood. (i.e. Atkins isn't just about eating nothing but meat forever and ever, and the Grapefruit Diet isn't eating just's eating grapefruit before each meal)
  • One easily noticeable trait among food enthusiasts is their total disdain for any chain restaurant. Some take it a step further and badmouth even local non-chain eateries that are popular and/or have attractive signs and architecture to bring in the curious. The most extreme eat from a single small and nondescript place that's hard to notice and nowhere else, and deride other food enthusiasts for eating anywhere else. However, there is another group that inverts this phenomenon: Chain restaurant fans, who by and large ignore local restaurants, embracing It's Unpopular, So It Sucks.


  • This happened to Harry Potter with the massive turnout for Order of the Phoenix—many "fans" assumed JK Rowling could get away with writing absolute crap from then on. However, they didn't so much drop the fandom as stick around to complain about everything, thus proving their worth as True Fans.
    • Happened to a lesser extent with the influx of new fans the film brought, but the fact that most of them read the books anyway reassured the original fanbase somewhat.
  • A lot of long-time book fans of The Lord of the Rings were unhappy with the caliber of fans introduced to LotR by the movie trilogy. Many "old-school" fans consider the movie lovers shallow and frivolous, especially if said movie lovers were subsequently turned on to the books by the movies.
    • In one way at least it was quite relevant that older fans of the books hated the success of the movies- it made buying replacements for your now venerable and worn copies extraordinarily expensive. The books went from being $10~$15 each ($35 for the set including The Hobbit) to $20~30 PER BOOK. As with most major movie merchandising, every older print of the book suddenly disappeared, only to be replaced with new editions with oversized, tie-in covers....and that's only the Lot R books themselves. Tolkien's books had always had a great deal of secondary literature (books about the books), even a few written by J.R.R. or Christopher Tolkien, but after the movies came out? Merchandising mayhem.
      • Fictional uber-geek Jason Fox in FoxTrot once worried about the highly positive public reception of The Lord of the Rings. Although he is only concerned that enjoying Tolkien's trilogy will make it (gasp!) mainstream to be a nerd, therefore depriving people like himself of their "special" status.
      • A very early story arc had him upset when his mom bought him a Batman lunchbox, because the movie had already been out for a few months and he didn't want to be seen as a bandwagon-jumper.
  • The Twilight series by Stephenie Meyer has gained a substantial hatedom merely because of how insanely popular the books are between young girls. This is especially true among fans of traditional horror stories and vampire stories, who will often yell "Your Vampires Suck!", especially since the story is more of a love story featuring vampires. While there are complaints that actually have legitimacy, naturally the former bunch tends to drown out the legitimate criticisms.

Live-Action TV

  • In general, once a TV series gets higher than average ratings, there is a portion of the fandom that is programmed to hate it, and if it gets nominated for or wins any major awards like an Emmy or a Golden Globe...
  • All That got a lot more viewers and faced a lot more criticism after it was Uncanceled in 2001. The increased ratings could be attributed to more popular guests, more homes with cable/satellite, and Jamie Spears. The decreased reputation could be attributed to a change in the tone of the show, the complete replacement of all the old actors and writers, and Jamie Spears.
  • The success Chaser's War On Everything practically relies on the cast remaining anonymous. Of course, as the show increased in popularity they have needed to do more of their farcical stunts overseas, where they are not so well known. As a result of this, many of their older fans are getting bored of them and jumping ship, so to speak. Of course This hasn't stopped a good chunk of them complaining that the show is ending after its 3rd Season.
  • Doctor Who presents something of an interesting example of this; the classic series was for a long time very popular, becoming something of a national institution in its home country. By the time of its cancellation, however, it had for numerous reasons become something of a cult show, something which only intensified with the development of the largely fan-driven Expanded Universe media. When the new series came along and restored the show to its former popularity a certain subsection of these fans, having apparently forgotten that its period of being a cult was the exception rather than the intention, seemed to be convinced that the show's newfound popularity was a bad thing and that it should have remained the cult relic cherished only by a few fans and mocked by everyone else. Whilst the new series is significantly different in style and tone from the old series in many ways, thus generating plenty of legitimate criticism for numerous reasons, a significant portion of the critical response to the new version does seem to be comprised of people who are upset that it's not "theirs" anymore.
  • Glee times a million. To be fair, the back nine episodes are quite uneven, but plenty of people were hating on it before the season even officially started because the pilot was shown at the beginning of the summer of 2009, kicking off an extremely aggressive and relentless ad campaign by Fox (the most amusing facet of which was when they came up with the term "Gleeks" and them tried to pretend that hardcore fans had christened themselves that).
    • This can also cross over with music elitism, too, since there are many people who despise Glee for the simple fact that it causes a surge in popularity for whatever classic rock songs are features in a given episode.
  • The first season of iCarly was relatively low key, especially in the online fandom. It exploded in popularity in Season 2, and along with an increased emphasis on the Shipping, lead many to quit watching.
  • Kids TV shows tend to get this the most. Most likely a major cause of Hatedom and Periphery Hatedom towards shows such as Barney and Friends and Mighty Morphin Power Rangers.
  • This seems to be happening to The Mighty Boosh. Many original fans have complained the latest series is too mainstream and lacking in invention. Whether there's been an actual drop in quality is debatable.
  • There seems to be a substantial backlash of this sort to anything by the legendary comic Monty Python, (especially, however, Monty Python and the Holy Grail). Some people might just be sick of the inevitable quotations, since so many people know the quotes and love them. Others have different objections.
  • For many people, the decline of The X-Files began with its move to Sundays from Fridays and its attempt to be more "accessible" to Fox viewers.
  • In the Community episode "Conspiracy Theories and Interior Design" an in-universe example occurs when their blanket fort makes the newspapers and inspires similar blanket forts in campuses across the country, Troy and Abed decide it must be destroyed.


In General

  • Music is by far the Trope Codifier. Sadly, this happens WAY too much among music fans. Hell, this trope was primarily made by these guys. If a song or a performer is "mainstream", they automatically suck regardless if they actually suck or not. I liked that band before they were popular and I hate the band because they are popular are quite common mottos among "true music fans".
  • This also happens when a good song is well-liked by several people and is then subsequently given high prominence on a radio station's playlist—listener-selected or otherwise. In fairness, even the best song can become yawn-some when it's played on the radio all the live-long day, but this does not make it any more ridiculous to hear music elitists bashing it just because it's on the radio.
  • There's a couple of sure fire ways for musicians to end up falling victim to this trope which usually occur right around the time they become popular and were often done by them for the purpose of becoming more popular and trying to appeal to a wider audience.
    • Doing crossover projects with or allowing your music to be sampled by artists in other genres. How dare you try to give common ground to fans of different kind of music!
    • Changing or expanding subject matter. Oh, your music and lyrics are Darker and Edgier, and you want to do some stuff that's a bit Lighter and Softer and not quite as serious? Possibly put a smile on someone's face when they listen to it? YOU SELLOUT! Or, the other way around. Your songs are Lighter and Softer light and make people feel good, and you want to sing about more serious subjects? SELLOUT!
    • Experimenting with a new sound. What's that? You're getting tired of doing the same guitar riffs and drum beats over and over? Maybe want to try a different instrument? Well, TOUGH! You're gonna keep everything the same or else you're a corporate creation just in it for the money!
    • Winning or getting nominated for a major award like a Grammy.
    • Can cross over with movie elitism by allowing a song to be featured in a popular movie.
    • To the pickier Fan Dumb, simply having music be played on the radio means it sucks or that the quality has dropped.
    • Videos. Making one when you haven't done so yet is a surefire way to fall victim to this trope. How dare you want to add something visual to go with your sound!.
  • Musicians can get this treatment when they previously believed in this trope yet later loosen up about it. For example, Metallica originally claimed they would never make a music video because doing so would be selling out, yet later on they decided it wasn't that big of a deal and started making them. Don't try to tell that to their original fans, though.
  • Several genres or sub-genres tend to be the target of this more than others.
    • While it had plenty of legit criticisms, this was a large reason behind the hate of Disco music in the 70's. It probably would have died off a lot sooner without the "Disco Sucks" T-shirts and Disco demolitions.
    • Indie Bands. Pretty much any one after achieving a level of fame will be accused of this, even if the only reason they were indie was because they were waiting and trying to get signed on by a major label.
    • Punk bands and Goth bands are particular targets of this as they cannot represent the demographic if they go mainstream, though that's to be expected with their frequent anti-establishment themes.
      • Some of the former's subculture's icons being looked down upon by elitists. Bauhaus, Christian Death, and Alien Sex Fiend may not be mainstream, but they certainly aren't underground anymore.
    • Heavy Metal musicians get the worst of this treatment. ANY metal singer or band that becomes commercially successful in the slightest will be accused of selling out, even if said band hasn't changed their musical or lyrical approach at all. Metal is Ruined FOREVER about once a week depending on who you ask.
      • Again, there have also been plenty of legit criticisms of metal's more mainstream sub-genres, but a lot of the hate stems from this. Fans of thrash would not have hated Glam Metal in the 80's nearly as much if it hadn't been as popular as it was. The same applies to the dislike of Nu-metal in the 90's and 2000's.
      • Speaking of Thrash Metal, this was the fans' cry in the 90's against numerous thrash bands in the 90's who changed their sound, believing the genre had been played out.
      • Power Metal and Progressive Metal haven't fallen victim to this yet, at least not in North America, as the sub-genres haven't been able to garner the same level of popularity as they have in Europe and Asia, but keep your finger crossed for the cries if they ever do go mainstream there. Also, despite not actually being mainstream in North America, you can still find plenty of blogs and forums whining that a power or progressive metal band sold out in some way.
    • Hip-hop usually inverts this trope, as it's typically celebrated when underground rappers go mainstream, however, even it's not immune from this. The genre went through this starting in the 2000's decade, mostly because the core fanbase (Blacks and Latinos) felt that the artists have been pandering to white suburban teens by constantly making pop-ish ringtone songs and club anthems and making duets with R&B artists. Not only that, but rappers caused an even further disconnection from their base by being solely money-oriented, or very capitalistic with their subject matter (making songs about cars and money rather than sociopolitical issues and the struggle of inner-city life), essentially going from being against the system and establishment to becoming the system and establishment. This, of course, is a highly contentious and bitterly divisive topic among hip-hop fans.
      • Further complaints also stem from the perceived lack of creativity, but when there is creativity it can also lead to "crossing over", thus bringing us to this very trope...cruel irony.
      • Actually, this trope really started in the '80s, when New Jack Swing, MC Hammer, and other pop rap acts brought widespread awareness of the genre from nationwide to worldwide, to the ire of "purists". Of course, good luck reminding ardent critics of this.
      • Good luck trying to convince Nostalgia Filter proponents of the fact that not only did New Jack Swing last all of just 3 or 4 years, but that it's a completely different genre all together.
    • Pop music. Hell, it's in the name. While pop has plenty of legit criticisms, many, if not all, pop stars have substantial hatedoms solely because this is their genre of choice. Any new pop star (Miley Cyrus, Demi Lovato, Jonas Brothers, Britney Spears, Selena Gomez, Justin Timberlake, Lady Gaga, etc.) sucks because they are popular and ruins Pop forever.
    • They don't just ruin pop. Check out a YouTube video of any song in any genre more than a decade old and observe a comments section with endless claims that pop-star-du-jour represents the death of all good music, everywhere.
    • Dubstep is seeing this a lot as of late. While most styles of electronic music haven't been very popular on the other side of the pond, the dubstep scene has blown up considerably in the past few years, also attracting fans that haven't cared much for electronic music before. This reaction is compounded by remixes of every popular song available, by amateur and pro producers alike. The general growth to this trend is mostly attributed to artists like Rusko, and later, Skrillex, that have produced tracks with a gradually more aggressive sound. Purists are turned off by the "popular" form of dubstep, or "brostep", characterized by massive drops with over-produced, overpowering synths and basslines. Their complaints are founded in reason, though, as it has little connection to earlier dubstep, which has its roots in bassline music and UK Garage.
  • Music Journalism. This sometimes happens here, most infamously with Rolling Stone magazine, who were unable to understand Led Zeppelin's popularity. Later on, when the band became legacy artists (and especially after the death of John Bonham), Rolling Stone has since lauded them as one of the best bands of all time.
  • Several songs in country music actually lampshade the phenomenon. The most famous is Barbara Mandrell's "I Was Country When Country Wasn't Cool". Alan Jackson's "Gone Country" has undertones of this as well.
  • Video Games that license music tend to result in the songs getting this treatment:
    • Look up any YouTube video of any song that appeared in Call of Duty: Black Ops, such as "Fortunate Son" by Creedence Clearwater Revival or "Sympathy For the Devil" by The Rolling Stones. Take note of all the comments bashing people who have heard of the two songs through the game. For bonus stupidity points, ask yourself why they aren't going the same with, say, Forrest Gump for the former. (Then again, COD itself is a victim of this trope; see below.)
    • Likewise with Celldweller, Fallout 3, and Dead Rising 2. People had this complaint regarding the songs that appeared in these game.
    • Games in the Rhythm Game genre like the Guitar Hero series and the Rock Band series have elicited this reaction from elitist music fans complaining that players who became fans of a certain band after hearing a song on Guitar Hero or Rock Band are shallow commercial junkies who don't really count as fans, and/or that the band has "sold out" by letting their songs be in the game at all, and that the song or songs being used in the game is just mainstream tripe that "real" fans know is trash compared to the band's still-unheard, great songs. It really doesn't matter which Guitar Hero-featured band you pick, anyone from Aerosmith to Yeah Yeah Yeahs seems to spark the exact same outrage among its fan base. As others have pointed out in the resulting flame wars, this only raises the question of exactly why a video game is any less legitimate a music venue than radio, television, online services, or CDs, and why finding out about a band via Guitar Hero is less "honorable" than any other way.
  • Some western fans of Korean pop music have gone as far as to explicitly state that this is the reason they don't want their favorite groups to debut and succeed in America.
  • Some people have an affinity for musicians from other countries that they would probably not have if they were well-known in the country that they live in. This is often amplified if the reason for liking the band is due to attraction to one or more of the members.
  • This happens to many lesser-known solo artists that lend their vocals to a track by a huge hip-hop artist or dance producer, which then proves to be their breakthrough to the mainstream. Sia Furler and Dragonette are two recent examples of this.


  • ABBA This complaint arises in their fan community every time there is a major surge in interest, the latest being the success of Mamma Mia!. Interestingly, each wave of popularity leads to a status increase for past newcomers, to the point where "Goldies" (newcomers after the release of the "ABBA Gold" album), who were ridiculed on their arrival, are now praised as "true fans" by the older fans who criticized them. Many of these older fans ignore the fact that they first liked the band in the 1970's, at the all-time peak of their success and popularity.
    • This is common in multiple music fandoms, and leads to a sort of cycle: a band becomes "popular", at which point liking them becomes lame and so they become unpopular, at which point no-one likes them so liking them becomes "cool" again. Thanks to the internet, this can often happen over the course of a single month, even with no change whatsoever from the band themselves. Factor in that this happens on several levels (with individual artists, genres, and even with awareness of this very trope), and that bands often drastically change their sounds and attitudes (usually partially due to fan reaction and, again, awareness of this trope), and you get a consensus attitude that is very confusing and difficult to get a read on.
  • ACDC has managed to avoid this for the most part, but there is still a portion of the fandom that believes the band was better before Brian Johnson replaced the deceased Bon Scott on vocals, simply because of the massive success of "Back in Black" (still the second best selling album of all time to this day) which was the first album to feature Johnson.
  • Against Me! not only got this, but their fans got outright hostile about it. Fans claimed the band sold out when they moved from the tiny No Idea label to Fat Wreck Chords in 2003, to the point where fans slashed the tires of the bands tour van and vandalized it and reportedly poured bleached over their merch table. The bizarre thing is that Fat Wreck Chords was well known for being anti-establishment indie label. Ironically, there was a lot less outcry when the band left FWC for an actual major label, Sire Records in 2007.
  • Anthrax was accused of selling out when they chose John Bush as their new lead singer and with their more mainstream-sounding album, Sounds of White Noise. The band's rhythm guitarist, Scott Ian, commented on this in an interview saying, "The bottom line is, everyone in this business is in it to make money. Myself included."
    • They also got this treatment when they dared to commit the unforgivable crime of trying to give fans of different genres some common ground when they did a Rap Metal project with Public Enemy.
  • The Arctic Monkeys' EP Who The Fuck Are Arctic Monkeys was made specifically in order to stop it from falling victim to this trope by minimising its exposure on mainstream radio.
  • The Beatles are one of the few artists to be both massively popular and adored by critics. Yet, even they are an example of this trope; the band's Liverpool fans felt very betrayed when the band hit it big and moved to London and replaced drummer Pete Best with Ringo Starr. Plus, their massive success and influence and having stood the test of time more than most musicians is used to claim that they are overrated. Additionally, a number of people find it cool to hate The Beatles by dismissing them as a 60s pop group. Y'know, not putting them in the context of the 60s and realising all the things they helped to make popular, not least the sheer timelessness of stuff like Rubber Soul and Revolver.
      • And as this article from Cracked explains, even before that success, the band's image and musical style were a complete 180 from what they would later become famous for.
    • Similarly, some of those who take this attitude don't even provide or consider the "'60s" qualifier and just compare them to whatever current pop act they don't like or which happens to be at the top of the charts, without any consideration for how 1960s popular music and contemporary popular music might be totally different. This one tends to work both ways, however, with subscribers to this trope who happen to like the Beatles often driven to paroxysms of fury that anyone might dare consider or compare the Beatles to a 'mere' pop group—despite the fact that, at least early in their career, this is arguably a fair comparison in many ways.
  • Behemoth is given a lot of flak in the Heavy Metal underground for moving from Black Metal to Death Metal and signing with Nuclear Blast
  • Black Eyed Peas: Happened after adding Fergie to their lineup and switching to a more pop oriented sound which made them commercially successful.
  • Blue Oyster Cult. The popularity of their song "(Don't Fear) The Reaper" as a result of it forming the centrepiece of the popular Saturday Night Live skit "More Cowbell" has seen something of an injection of new fans based on this song—much to the irritation of the existing fans, who feel that the band's other songs are being overlooked in the process.
  • Bob Seger after he allowed his song "Like a Rock" to be featured in Chevrolet commercials. Never mind the reason he did it; Chevrolet is owned by General Motors, which is headquartered in Seger's hometown of Detroit. They were on the brink of bankruptcy, and Seger had a lot of friends who worked for them. Not wanting those friends to be out of jobs, Seger allowed the song to be used, and it pretty much saved the company.
  • Cradle of Filth: Thornography apparently brought them mainstream. However mainstream extreme black metal can get.
  • David Bowie usually falls victim to They Changed It, Now It Sucks accusations due to his penchant for the New Sound Album trope, but the deliberately mainstream pop-rock of Let's Dance (1983) -- which resulted in the biggest-selling album of his career—led to criticism along these lines as well. It got worse when his next two albums (Tonight and Never Let Me Down) followed in that vein to diminishing returns. In the end Bowie himself felt dissatisfied with his output and moved on, first to the unsuccessful Hard Rock group Tin Machine and then to solo work that was driven more by art than commerce.
  • DragonForce shows you don't have to do much to get this treatment by allowing the use of "Through the Fire and Flames" as a bonus track for Guitar Hero III. Fans at first praised its inclusion, and it would seem that this trope was averted. Then the game came out, and the cries of "Sellout!" came with it. Seriously, just go on to any video of the band on YouTube, either their music videos, their live performances, or their interviews and count how many comments read along the lines of "I liked Dragon Force before Guitar Hero.
  • Evanescence. When they began to take off, fans were in denial that the band had hit the Lycos 50 (yes, you read right, search engine results!), even though their only album before Fallen was Origin, a glorified demo tape.
  • Foo Fighters. Dave Grohl has gone on to achieve huge success since the end of Nirvana, now that he's the face of the band and not just the drummer. This has led to a lot of accusations of selling out.
  • Genesis. Thanks to a Broken Base, they are a textbook example of this trope. If you want to see someone have an aneurysm, just ask a fan of the Peter Gabriel era what he/she thinks of the Invisible Touch album. Even Wall Street psychopaths like that song.
  • The Goo Goo Dolls. After their album A Boy Named Goo, they drastically changed their sound from high-tempo rock/punk to the mellower soft rock they're famous for today after the success of their single Name. It's a good thing they didn't go with the original planned name for the band, The Sex Maggots. Word of God says they were going to do this anyway, because they were tired of being labeled as ripoffs of The Replacements.
  • Green Day got this treatment with American Idiot which thrust them back into the limelight after nearly a decade in obscurity and brought them a new generation of fans, as well a new generation of older fans complaining about how they had sold out.
    • Not to mention all the punk rock fans who found Green Day's entire existence to be selling out the genre.
  • Howard Shore got quite a bit of Hatedom from film score fans because of all of the notice he got for The Lord of the Rings, which has led some people to claim he was never talented at all. Others could care less and enjoy all of his work.
  • Famous Post-hardcore band Jawbox was signed by Atlantic Records in 1994, in the midst of the Nirvana-provoked Alternative Rock craze. Since they'd already had 5 years under their belt, they managed to score a very favourable record contract that allowed them control over their recordings and the ability to organise their own shows. Regardless, the Fan Dumb came fast and furious: one particularly psychotic fan wrote to the band wishing for their death in a fiery van accident.
  • Justin Bieber started off as a YouTube sensation and would quickly and surprisingly find his way to the top of the music industry, to much delight for a countless amount of Teenage Girls. Unfortunately for him and his fans, going mainstream won't get you the approval of the Internet, especially if you appeal to teenage girls and is highly regarded as one of the most hated individuals on the internet today.
  • Kings of Leon after Only By The Night. Many of their fans who followed them throughout their first few albums felt that particularly "Sex On Fire" was an uninspired sellout compared to their earlier work. It evidently turned several off them, as neither 5th album Come Around Sundown and its accompanying single "Radioactive" were as much of a critical or commercial success.
  • KISS to some extent, though the real irony is that the band's self-admitted, entire reason for existence was to sell a look and style on the road and not so much their songs.
  • Korn makes an example of this trope in their song, "Y'all Wanna Single."
  • Lagwagon. The song "Know It All" lampshades this trope.
  • Lene Marlin. The Norwegian singer had a huge success in Italy and Japan (of all places!) with her first album, Playing my game. Released with little fanfare, the album was not technically exquisite, but most fans loved it anyway and thought of it as simple yet made with passion—music for the sake of itself, rather than in the pursuit of the holy dollar. As a result it was a surprise hit, and good times were had by all. Then year 2003 came along, and with it the highly anticipated release of the second album, Another day. Cue many of the fans (the most outspoken ones, usually) lamenting sore disappointment that Lene had sold out, that while the quality of the music had improved that of the lyrics had plummeted, that the album had been written to cash in on the success of her name, Blah Blah Blah. The third album, Lost in a moment, was unsurprisingly met with even more bashing.
    • Fourth album's now out, Twist the truth. An experimental album, it was unsurprisingly met with cries of "it's too different!" by the same people who used to complain that Lene's music was always the same.
  • Many fans of the Canadian singer Lights became less keen on her when she started to gain publicity and become something of a darling of the hipster music circles.
  • Linkin Park got this treatment when "What I've Done" and "New Divide" were featured in the Michael Bay-directed Transformers movies. This is an especially bad instance of this phenomenon because Linkin Park was plenty popular before that happened, with Hybrid Theory and Meteora having achieved widespread success, yet this trope was not in force for those albums.
  • Liz Phair.
  • Megadeth received a lot of hatred because they too made their sound more mainstream in the early nineties with Countdown to Extinction. Megadeth has moved back to their traditional style, so they don't receive many accusations of selling out anymore.
  • Metallica, oh, good lord, Metallica. The most evident example is their 1991 self titled album, aka "The Black Album", which was the most mainstream of their albums at that point and also marked a change in their style from thrash to a more general metal sound. It provided them a lot of success, at the time making them the biggest metal band in the world but also gave them an incredible amount of hate and sellout accusations from their original fan base.
    • Though, really, they've been accused of this to a certain extent with pretty much every album following their debut usually on account on They Changed It, Now It Sucks. Frontman James Hetfield finds it quite amusing. "Ride The Lightning" for having a ballad; "Master of Puppets" for being slightly less thrash sounding, "And Justice For All" for having more of a progressive sound, as well as (GASP!) having a video for their song, "One" and (THE HORROR) earning them a Grammy nomination, "Load" and "Reload" for also having different styles, and "Death Magnetic" for not being a exact copy of "Master of Puppets". No matter what they do, Metallica is never going to catch a break from their so called "fans".
  • Modest Mouse suffered from this after Float On.
  • Muse has suffered a lot of this since the release of Black Holes And Revelations, and to a lesser extent since Absolution. Muse were considered very cool when they were indie artists on their first two albums, Showbiz and Origin Of Symmetry, and just about reached their peak when they hit the mainstream with Absolution. By the time Black Holes came out, it was considered a disappointment because the singles released from it were pop songs rather than rock. This happens a lot, in fact, if an album is represented by the songs which are atypical for the album itself.
    • Ever since "Supermassive Black Hole" was featured in the first Twilight series film, you can't go to a Muse video on YouTube without fanboys shrieking about Twilight fans liking Muse due to said song in movie. Sad, because while Twilight is a polarizing series, almost everyone likes Muse.
  • My Chemical Romance. People have said this about all of their last three albums; Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge, The Black Parade, and Danger Days.
    • Even before Three Cheers was put out, when they signed to Reprise. The album didn't even have to be made yet for people to start calling out this trope.
    • On the other hand, each album receives a better score among most music critics than the last one. Depending on the magazine/website, I Brought You My Bullets, You Brought Me Your Love scored between 2.5 and 4 on 5, Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge scored between 3 and 4 on 5, The Black Parade between 3 and 5 on 5 and Danger Days between 3.5 and 5 on 5. Their fans may think they're sellouts, or they changed, but they're mostly having fun with their music style, and critics like it.
  • Nickelback. For a band with such a vocal Hatedom, and that so few people claim to like publicly, you'd think they'd get less airplay and make less money. A lot of their hatedom from Grunge fans stems solely from the fact that the band can fill stadiums and arenas.
  • Nicki Minaj has two forms of this: the set of people who believe she really became more pop-oriented in her debut album, Pink Friday,(before that she had mixtapes) and people who thinks she was much better when she was completely in the underground.
    • Two songs on Pink Friday address that question, with different points of view expressed on each one. "Dear Old Nicki" has become an anthem of sorts for the latter set mentioned above (and "Dear old Nicki, please call back" their motto).
    • On the other hand, bonus track "Muny" has become the same for the other side of the debate, with said motto being "Bitches want my old shit, buy my old mixtape."
  • Nirvana. It's widely believed that frontman Kurt Cobain killed himself as a result of his fear of this trope and even came to hate the band's signature song, "Smells Like Teen Spirit" (which was supposed to be a parody of the same fans it started attracting) often refusing to play it live. Additionally, the band's popularity is often used to claim that they're overrated, and even some grunge fans don't like them solely because of it.
    • Kurt Cobain often wrote pop songs to subvert this. Even Bleach, their most abrasive and inaccessible release has "About A Girl" on it, which he wrote after listening to The Beatles all day. They followed up Nevermind with In Utero, which is much sludgier than Nevermind but ultimately reaches a compromise: songs which were just about heavy enough for Bleach/Incesticide fans, but melodic enough for Nevermind fans. Of course, "In Bloom", from Nevermind points fun at the people who listened to Nirvana because they were popular and didn't understand the lyrics.
  • No Doubt with Tragic Kingdom which put them on the charts with their hit singles, "Don't Speak" and "Just a Girl".
  • Ozzy Osbourne has never really gotten the full treatment of this, but his solo work being more popular and successful than his work with Black Sabbath is often the only basis snobbier fans use to claim the former isn't as good as the latter. He also got some minor claims of this with The Osbournes reality show in the early 2000's, which brought him a whole new generation of fans.
  • Paramore has gotten this treatment mainly because they did a song for the first Twilight film and because they now have merchandise at Hot Topic. Unfortunate considering how talented they actually are.
  • Pearl Jam actually kind of inverted this to turn less commercial, everything after Vs. were New Sound Albums.
  • Pink Floyd. Happened after The Dark Side of the Moon in the minds of some of their fans, who preferred their old psychedelic music over the new harder and darker material.
    • Though in this case, the band themselves felt this way, particularly Roger Waters, who didn't like the larger, noisier audiences that their greater exposure attracted (leading to his infamous, sputum-powered Creator Backlash during the Animals tour).
    • And need I mention poor old Syd Barrett, who passed his own fame-tolerance threshold back when they were plugging their first album, leading to him taking permanent refuge in drugs.
  • Queen, particularly in the years after Freddie Mercury's passing, where their most famous works skyrocketed in popularity with their use in films, commercials, sports events and random internet memes. The trope, however, most likely began to take effect as early as 1974 when "Killer Queen" started climbing the charts.
  • Randy Newman parodied this on his 1999 ode to over-the-hill rock stars, "I'm Dead (But I Don't Know It)."
  • Red Hot Chili Peppers' popularity became so high at the time of Stadium Arcadium and its singles overplayed that even they became exhausted by the fame, going on a 3 year hiatus after the tour finished. This caused their guitarist John Frusciante to leave the band for the second time, for exactly the same reason he left the first time (except that the previous time he was also a heroin addict).
  • Regurgitator. The Australian band put out a song called "I Like Your Old Stuff Better Than Your New Stuff" parodying fan reaction to their album Unit, which was seen by many as mainstreaming away a lot of the bands earlier originality.
  • REM fans felt this way about the band after they made the move to Warner Brothers, and specifically in the wake of their surprise "Losing My Religion" hit.
  • Rise Against. Many fans feel their first few albums were closer to hardcore punk, faster, and generally less melodic than their previous two. It doesn't help, then, that these were their two real 'mainstream' albums (though they had some success prior to them). While the subjects of the songs are much the same, older fans often feel that the albums are intentionally more accessible to non-punk fans.
  • They Might Be Giants. A lot of people found John Henry, their first album with a full band, to be selling out. God only knows what these people think of the band's four (so far) children's albums.
  • Tool produced an epic, Cluster F-Bomb-throwing response to this phenomenon with the song "Hooker With a Penis", where Maynard tells an OGT "Yeah, I sold out, fuck off."

Well now I've got some/A-dvice for you, little buddy
Before you point the finger/You should know that
I'm the fuckin' man,/And if I'm the fuckin' man
Then you're fuckin' the man as well/So you can point that
All you know about me is what I've sold you/Dumb fuck
I sold out long before you ever heard my name
I sold my soul to make a record/Dip shit

  • U2. Because of this trope, their fanbase is divided into two groups; pre-"Joshua Tree" and post "Joshua Tree".
  • The Who. The band was always popular, but when they became international sensations with the release of Tommy, fans of their earlier work thought they were becoming too popular. Not helped by the use of their songs in CSI.

Professional Wrestling

  • This happens ALL THE TIME in wrestling. Especially in the IWC (Internet Wrestling Community). There were a lot more haters of Stone Cold Steve Austin and The Rock when they turned face than when they originally found their footing as "bad guys". (Look at some of the reactions Rock got on between 1999-2000, for instance!) Granted, the fan favorite versions of both, and others, tended to pick up a bit of "Austin Powers Syndrome" in that their characters became catchphrase machines.
    • Heck, the IWC once LOVED John Cena at one point!
    • ...and Triple H, probably before all the political stories came to light. That is, if the dirtsheets are to be believed...
    • And something happened to Kurt Angle between WWE and TNA, as he came there minus the IWC fans who called him one of the best workers in the world, instead ridiculing his delusional radio interviews and etc. and his past refusals to address supposed drug problems.
  • CM Punk was a Smart Mark darling on the independent scene, with the fans hailing him as quite possibly the best wrestler in America (or at the very least, the best wrestler in Ring of Honor, which is kind of synonymous these days). Then he signed with WWE, and became the centerpiece of its ECW revival, and now all of a sudden you can't go into a wrestling forum without hearing about how Punk is overrated and a sloppy wrestler. Some of this might be spillover anger from the ECW revival being mishandled; but Punk was one of the few bright spots of the show, and yet he seems to get the most criticism. Now that he's moved away from ECW onto Raw and then Smackdown and become world champ, the criticisms have only gotten worse.
    • Partially due to Hype Backlash—a lot of SmartMarks kept hearing how great Punk was from ROHbots when he was working long main event matches, against top level opponents, with free reign over his character and promos. Five minute extended squashes over Justin Credible didn't quite match up...
    • Now that CM Punk has turned into a crazy cult-leader Heel, he's won over a lot of his former detractors.
      • And from there, we had the 2011 'Pipe Bombs' and suddenly Punk is back to being among the smarks, as he so proudly declares, the BEST IN THE WORLD.
  • Evan Bourne, formerly known as Matt Sydal. Hell, just calling him by his WWE name is enough to set off indy wrestling purists in some communities.
  • Pick any wrestler who's being used as a Jobber or just not being featured enough. You will find many IWC fans putting them over on message boards and saying they deserve pushes etc and how much they should be treated better than how they're being used right now. The wrestler gets a push - they're not underrated anymore so cue large amounts of haters and complainers bashing them.
    • At the start of 2010 Evan Bourne was a jobber getting squashed by Sheamus most weeks. Many fans were complaining about how unfair this was to him. In the middle of the year he got a bit of a push by main eventing Raw and working great matches with Chris Jericho. Suddenly cue large amounts of threads bashing him for not looking old enough or some even complaining about how weak his kicks were. Oh boy.
    • Natalya Neidheart got this too. Ever since she was depushed in mid 2008 plenty of IWC fans were complaining about how she barely wrestled anymore and how they were dying for her to get a push. The Hart Dynasty split in late 2010 and Nattie got pushed in a Divas' title feud. She won the belt eventually and suddenly fans were complaining about how boring she was.
    • This happened with John Cena. Hell back in 2003 when he faced Brock Lesnar for the belt at Backlash, the majority of fans wanted him to win the title. Nowadays any IWC fan wanting Cena to win a title is almost unheard of. The main reason he's hated is because he's got a large kid fanbase.
    • Even the Zack Ryder haters are already beginning to emerge. When he's not being pushed and he's got Z True Long Island Story pretty much telling WWE to push him the smarks are crying for him to be on TV. Now he's face and being pushed and there's haters calling his gimmick stale and saying it'll never get over.
  • A bit of a borderline example. When former Ring of Honor champion Tyler Black decided to sign a WWE developmental contract in late 2010, the ROH fans immediately turned on him and called him a "sellout". Black admitted in a later interview that this bothered him, and he used those feelings as part of the heel character he became due to the news. (In perhaps a bit of irony, Black supposedly also had the chance to re-negotiate his ROH contract, or also sign with TNA. Who convinced him to sign with WWE? The aforementioned Evan Bourne).
    • Black isn't the first ROH wrestler to turn an impending move to WWE into a heel run; the aforementioned CM Punk did the same thing.


  • Windows became an internet Antichrist when it clearly dominated the Computer Wars. Conversely, Mac OS did the reverse and became an internet darling when it became the apparent underdog. Recently though, Mac has rebounded in popularity with the help of the iPod and may have picked up this trope as well but Apple hate is nothing compared to Microsoft hate.
  • Speaking of Apple, Apple Inc itself has become this. While still an underdog in the Computer Wars, the company has recently diversified beyond home computing, its dominance of the portable music player market and the downloadable music market (with the iPod and iTunes respectively), along with the success of iPhone, has made the company highly profitable even though it doesn't retain the share of the PC market it enjoyed in its computer-heyday. Recently it overtook long-time competitor Microsoft's share value. However, Apple's increased presence in these new markets and among ordinary people becoming Apple users (not to mention Steve Jobs' sporadic rants about competing products or Apple's heavy-handed tendency to enforce litigation against anyone who leaked details of unreleased or rumored products) have invoked this trope, where long-time fanboys are upset that the company is no longer part of the counter-culture they aspire to. The shift from its previous "Think different" campaign to the present somewhat-elitist Take That and Strawman Product advertising as well, not to mention that Apple seems to get away with anything bad they do unlike Microsoft, and its often snobbish user base also contributes towards this.
Some say that this may mark the end of "Microsoft's empire" and are calling Apple "the new Microsoft", but there's little sign that Microsoft is becoming "Unpopular, now it Rocks" considering that Microsoft is still dominating in the Computer Wars.
  • Ubuntu has made Linux more user-friendly and easier for newbies. Many GNU/Linux users complain about how mainstream this operating system has become, hence moving to other obscure operating systems such as Plan 9, BSD, and Haiku. A few long-time users are annoyed that the newbies seem more interested in getting actual work done than hacking the kernel.
Heck, Linux itself is becoming this trope for some so-called experts which only tell people to Google it, n00b. (One wonders if those are paid by Google or just want a job there)
    • In this case, there is a partial justification: making a system easy for beginners to use means adding extra components that will slow it down or otherwise make it inappropriate for experts to do very specific things. Of course, continuing to harp on about Ubuntu's mainstream release when there are "expert" distros like Arch (or even Ubuntu Minimal) available is a solid example of this trope in action.
    • To a certain extent, where software is concerned, this trope actually has some basis in reality. The tradeoff between user friendliness (interface complexity) and actual sound design from an internal/engineering standpoint (implementation complexity) is legendary. This is as much true in Ubuntu's case as it has ever been; Ubuntu has gained the former, while neglecting the latter.


  • Sports fans in general have had some problems with the so-called "bandwagoners" and "fairweather fans", the former jumps ship from team to team that is winning, while the latter only roots for their teams when they are winning. Such examples include:
    • For quite a number of years, being a Boston Red Sox fan was something passed down from parent to child. The "Red Sox Nation" went through roughly four generations without a Series win, and most Bosox fans were roundly mocked for supporting a "winless team". When Boston finally took home the Series in 2004, there was an influx of new fans - who were immediately labeled "bandwagon jumpers" because they hadn't endured generations of disappointment. To this day, unless you can legitimately claim to have been supporting them since well before their Series win, you will be derided as "not a true fan."
      • The Chicago White Sox went even longer without a World Series championship, and their fanbase underwent a similar development after the team won the Series in 2005.
    • Similar to the Red Sox example, the 2009-2010 Chicago Blackhawks experienced this trope. Having finally been allowed to show Hawks games on the air,[1] combined with the Hawk's potential to reach the Stanley Cup, the otherwise least-popular Chicago team became The Big Thing for a while. This really ticked off the die-hard fans who had stuck with the team through the Dork Age. It didn't help that the 'new fans' were significantly different from the die-hard fans demographically: they were younger, more ethnically diverse, and enjoyed a wide variety of sports. Many of these new fans even enjoyed the successful minor league Wolves up in Rosemont before jumping on the bandwagon, who took advantage of the doldrums of the Blackhawks to build their fanbase up out of fans who wouldn't support the Hawks.
    • The Saskatchewan Roughriders of the CFL got this treatment. In a league of 6 to 8 teams (depending on the years discussed), the Roughriders have won 3 championships in 100 years (which is about 1/5th of how many they should have won, for those wanting to keep track). After each win, new fans were instantly shouted at for being not a true fan. It gets worse when, at any other time, the rest of the league will laugh at you for cheering for the lovable loser.
    • When Finland's national hockey team plays in the World Championships tournament or in the Winter Olympics, many Finns, who don't otherwise know or care much about the sport, suddenly get glued to their TV's. This - in some hardcore fans' opinion - causes the broadcasting company to "dumb down" the level of commentary.
  • The game of baseball—not so much any rise in popularity in itself, but the reason why it does. When home run and scoring numbers skyrocket, more people flock to the ballpark—much to the chagrin of purists, who insist that "pitcher's duels" are the best type of games.
  • Twenty20 cricket is far more popular than traditional Test cricket or even One Day Internationals, and thus many purists refer to it as "hit-and-giggle".
  • Extreme sports in particular are targets of this. Skateboarding fans, for example, tend to complain to no end about the new fans that come with video games series like Tony Hawks Pro Skater.
  • Apparently if you are a Pittsburgh Penguins fan, you can't be a true pure fan because you only liked them when Crosby and Malkin came into the team. The same thing happened when Lemieux came over.

Tabletop Games


  • Playwrights have this happen to them also. With John Patrick Shanley, it's Doubt. For David Lindsay-Abaire, it's Rabbit Hole. In both cases, that individual play is much more universally popular than any other play they're done so they're seen as selling out with them (to be fair, they're more family-friendly than their other works).
  • Rent received this treatment with the movie version, as fans of the 3-hour stage musical (many of whom can sing it start to finish from memory) were annoyed that people were now allowed to experience the story in half the time. Never mind that it put the AIDS crisis back in the limelight for a while, after it had been relegated to "that disease that kills African people".

Video Games

In General

  • Video Games in general. Here's a little bit of homework... go onto a video game forum. Ask what the worst game they ever played is. Now count how many will trash a game that's popular. Round your answer to the nearest dozen. It's amazing how often these threads include playable games and say they are the "Worst games ever". Wouldn't the worst games ever be the ones that are actually unplayable due to glitches and unintelligent design?
  • Some PC gamers consider "consolization" to be synonymous with "complete destruction of the series" (just look at this list!), and complete and total assha- er, fans who proclaim themselves as "Hardcore Gamers" hate " Casual Gamers". For an in-depth view at the latter phenomenon, read this article. Heck, even TV Tropes has had Edit Wars erupt occasionally on this page's examples sections. This should be a sufficient enough indicator not to start any.
  • Expansion Packs and Downloadable Content in general. In its early days, the concept was well received as it added more content to their favorite game(s). However when the concept was brought mainstream, a few companies began to abuse the concept including hiding the DLC in the game to begin with and placing the content at exuberant prices, leading to many gamers denouncing DLC as a whole. Of course not everyone uses DLC that way, but simply announcing DLC for a game can lead to a lot of Internet Backdraft, even if your intentions are not as they see.
  • This will occur pretty much every time a new console is released, regardless of how wildly popular the company was with its previous console.
    • The Wii is a grand example of this. The Wii exploded in popularity with casual fans, causing the die hard Nintendo fans to shun Nintendo for selling out to casual gamers.
  • Certain genres and sub-genres tend to get dubbed as full of suck due to gaining massive popularity when certain series bring new fans to them. For instance:
    • RPGs got this with the massive popularity of Final Fantasy and others like The Elder Scrolls and Mass Effect.
    • Sandbox games got this after the massive success of titles like Grand Theft Auto III and Minecraft got other developers to start making more of them.
    • Shooter games got this with the massive popularity of games like Halo and Call of Duty, and now some gamers are screaming for the death of the genre just because they got popular with the masses.
    • It is expected for MOBA to go this route as more games get produced and become popular.
  • Every time a game hits a million or so players, there's always a loud group of people who complain the game sucks because now there are so many "noobs" running around. When in all honesty, you'd think they would try to make the community stronger, instead of trying to chase them out so they can remain a small club that brings less money or content in. It's also weird because you'd think people would want community-based games to be bigger given how community-dependent it is.
  • Gamers who play mostly on consoles, handhelds, and PCs will refuse to accept that mobile OS platforms (iOS, Android, and Windows Phone 7) are gaming platforms. Mostly because it has the same effect as the Wii. Also, because mobile OS games tend to focus on quick bursts of rounds or whatnot, they're not real games as well. This is conveniently forgetting the fact that much of the early handheld system library was this in general. You know that best selling game for the Game Boy? Tetris? A round could be done within 10–15 minutes. And this was the most amazing 10–15 minutes for some people.
    • Not to mention, even handheld juggernauts like Pokémon were made to be handheld games. (Eg, being able to save everywhere, stuff not taking long) People just refuse to accept this.


  • Bungie; in their early days a Macintosh game developer, decided that their next title after their hit PID was Marathon instead of a PID sequel, but after Marathon, they made Marathon 2. "Oh no, they've sold out!", said the fans. "No we haven't", said Bungie, later revealing work on the genre-founding Real Time Tactics game Myth. Next, Marathon 2 was ported to become Bungie's first non-Mac release. "Oh no, they've sold out!", the fans said again. "No we haven't", said Bungie, "We're still doing our own thing making innovative work" pointing to pioneering Beat'Em Up/shooter Oni and Sandbox guerrilla warfare game Halo. After that, Microsoft bought them, and turned Halo into a Killer App for the original Xbox. "They've sold out!" screamed the fans, and Bungie responded "No, we haven't." After they were finished with the Halo series,'Bung split up with Microsoft to create a new ip and signed a deal that it will be published by Activision. Of course the fans said "They've sold out!" and of course Bungie responded with "No, we haven't."
  • Some Call of Duty fans were not too pleased when the Modern Warfare franchise was introduced and turned out to be a hit. Possibly aided by the recent changes of Modern Warfare 2 including the lack of dedicated servers in the PC version, the Downloadable Content, and most importantly; the Executive Meddling between Activision and Infinity Ward, leading to many of Infinity Ward's crew defecting to Electronic Arts. Go to a gaming forum (especially one with a lot of PC users) and ask them what the best entry in the series is. Chances are, the answer will be United Offensive or Call of Duty 2. Woe be it to the poor newbie that actually likes the newer games.
    • For that matter, try saying you like Call of Duty in general. The first few games enjoyed Sacred Cow status; even Modern Warfare did because it was different (and because a certain internet critic praised it). Then it started to become popular. Nowadays if you say anything positive about Call of Duty, you'll be lucky if you aren't murdered in your sleep.
  • The Final Fantasy series tends to get a lot of this. Many fans love to claim how a particular entry "ruined" the series. Final Fantasy VII (for making the series too popular with the mainstream and making the characters in future games be more anime styled with big swords) and Final Fantasy X (for introducing more frequent cut scenes and voice acting) tend to bear the bulk of it, but other games are not immune to these complaints; the series has been "ruined" about thirteen to sixteen times by now.
    • Many RPG fans just plain hate Final Fantasy because their preferred series isn't selling as much. This inevitably leads to people like this complaining that the popularity of Final Fantasy is crowding out "better" games. Interestingly enough; this complaint is only lobbed at Final Fantasy games; and occasionally Halo; when any look through a gaming magazine can point out how many other games with big publishers or developers receive just as much advertising if not more than every game that Square Enix and Bungie make. (Dragon Quest IX only got such a budget because Nintendo published it outside of Japan.)
    • With VII, some argue that, with the additional installments to the story, the franchise is starting to plummet. They argue that the fun factor of the game is relinquished for the sake of pleasing the fanboys and fangirls, sacrificing the deep integrated storyline that made the original RPG such an amazing game for the sake of indulging in characters such as Sephiroth, Vincent, and Zack.
    • Final Fantasy VIII also got this treatment. With Part 7 starting to plummet in popularity, and crossovers such as Kingdom Hearts and Dissidia, Part 8 has grown more in popularity, and just as soon as it did, the sudden hatedom with it. Possibly justified in that Final Fantasy VIII was a very polarizing game even back in its prime, with many praising it and many others considering it the worst in the series.
      • Final Fantasy VIII being unpopular or poorly received on a whole is a case of regional Fan Dumb. It did poorly in the North America and Europe because it confused players who were not aware that the games in the Final Fantasy series were not linked. Despite this, it has always been one of the best reviewed and highest selling games in the series. The Final Fantasy 8 Hatedom was restricted to a fairly small, but very vocal segment of the fanbase.
    • The Kingdom Hearts series is also getting people calling it "overrated" or worse without much explanation as to why other than its popularity.
  • The Gears of War series has gotten popular enough to be alongside Halo as one of the "faces" of the Xbox platform. Nevertheless, fans of previous Epic Games titles and Console Wars debaters don't really seem too pleased.
  • League of Legends provides an example within a game: there are people in the community that intentionally play unpopular characters, and find to their dismay that their team members leave the queue or flame them all game long because they picked a "bad" champion. But when the character is eventually "discovered" by the mainstream and rises on the tier list, they proceed to complain bitterly about tier lists and flavours of the month, abandon the champion and find a new unpopular character to play. It is apparently considered a badge of honour to claim you liked Galio or Irelia before they were popular. This is also expected to happen to Yorick.
  • Many RPG fans don't seem too pleased that the Mass Effect series has become a hit, especially since they went towards a different game style than the "traditional" RPG.

Shepard: If you've heard of it, it's already too mainstream for me.

  • Minecraft, now that Notch has received an interview in a popular PC magazine and been plugged on the Team Fortress 2 blog, some people are calling the demise of the game. The cries of "Notch is a sellout!" became even more common among fans once he announced Minecraft would come to the Xbox 360, which happened because of the game's huge success. To be fair, however, they appear to be a minority.
  • Mother 3, now that the translation has finally been released and is receiving attention, there seem to be a lot of people who want to make clear to everyone that they always thought that the entire MOTHER series was overrated tripe.
  • Nintendo. Any of their popular franchises like Pokémon, Super Mario Bros., The Legend of Zelda, etc. are always bashed as being "overrated" with very little explanation as to why.
  • Pikachu, the Mascot of Pokémon, gets this treatment. It wouldn't be nearly as divisive if no one cared about it, would it?
  • The Resident Evil series after the release of Part 4. The style change, while making the series more popular, has caused many fans of the series's original style to feel betrayed, cheated, and forgotten. The same fans that until Resident Evil 4 was released were complaining that the series had grown repetitive and stagnant.
  • Shin Megami Tensei Would you believe that this series is starting to show signs of this? Persona 3 was well-received, bringing in newcomers to the series and thus making the entire Persona franchise eclipse the popularity of the main series. Which of course leads to people complaining that Atlus has "sold out", leaning more towards making their games tailored to the mainstream. Of course, complaints like this are tinged with a hint of irony, as the whole reason the Persona spinoff series was created in the first place was to make a MegaTen game that was tailored to the mainstream. These complaints are intensifying with the popularity of Persona 4 and the upcoming PSP remake is similarly getting trashed for proof that Atlus is "selling out".
  • Space Channel 5 has been getting this treatment ever since the announcement of the HD port of Part 2. Most of the internet has cried about Part 1 not coming out, even though Part 1 couldn't be released due to pre-rendered backgrounds and STILL look nice.
  • The System Shock series was beloved but never commercially successful. In 2007, BioShock (series), a Spiritual Successor, was released, and actually managed to become successful, becoming a commercial success even while competing with giants like Halo 3. BioShock (series) was very much like System Shock 2 , unfortunately, a very similar plot [2] and a relatively clunky interface for the PC version as well (as well as the DRM and technical issues) as well as a respawn mechanic that, unlike System Shocks, had no cost for use, removing any sense of difficulty. Guess what the System Shock 2 fans focused on.
    • SS2's other Spiritual Successor, Deus Ex, was lauded with universal acclaim. Its sequel had what was widely viewed as excessive consolization. Combined with the game's lessened scope, it created such a tidal wave of pure bile and hatred toward Warren Spector that he hasn't been seen since the next year's (much better received) Thief 3.
  • Tales of Symphonia is starting to get this treatment. Word of mouth (plus high exposure due to being a huge RPG on the RPG-starved Gamecube) led to it being a big seller and award-winner, and for the first time a lot of gamers outside of Japan started looking into the series. Fast-forward six or seven years and now the Tales (series) has a lot of embittered older fans who are mad that the newer games in the series are bigger sellers and more popular than the pre-Symphonia cult classics that were the early games. And it's all blamed on Symphonia's breakout popularity.
  • Touhou has been getting this treatment since the PC games came out, arguably. Each successive release seems to garner louder hate, especially since the series creator almost continually adds new characters with each game instead of reusing the old, much more popular ones. When a news program highlighted a fan-made Touhou video. Nevermind that Touhou wasn't even mentioned (and in fact, the newspeople probably didn't even know that Touhou existed,) find a clip of that on YouTube and see how many people are complaining that Touhou is mainstream now, and thus is RUINED FOREVER!!1!
  • The World Ends With You parodies this in its bonus chapter. "I'll be off listening to bands you kids have never even heard of! And then... when they go major... I'll be there to complain about how they sold out!"
  • Among the many haters of World of Warcraft are people who say that say because it is so popular, that it sucks. (That is, the people who have actually seen more than the box art.) Another large group of haters are people who complain that Blizzard has ruined the game by catering to the casual players, and believe the game was better back when raiding was still "hardcore". This is where it overcrosses with the Nostalgia Filter; since some of these same people were complaining about spending months getting their characters attuned. Typically, it's a very bad financial decision to have a game that locks out a good 75+% of its gamers from content and only cater to that ≤25% of the playerbase, since players typically quit when there's nothing for them. (Of course, if you're one of the elitists, then that's what you want.) A large proportion of the time some people spend on message boards is taken up by claiming Blizzard's subscription figures are bogus and thus the game is not as popular as it is claimed to be, because xyzabcblahblahblah (insert personal bugbear or whatever here). Well-reasoned legal arguments with copious citations have not stopped this train of thought.
  • This is starting to happen to Dragon Quest. There are people who scoff at you if you played Dragon Quest V and Dragon Quest VI via the DS versions, or heard of the series through Dragon Quest VIII or more recently, Dragon Quest IX after the massive marketing campaign. However, it can be hard to tell how much of this overlaps with the typical Square Enix Hate Dumb given how many people hate Dragon Quest because it's got the Square-Enix logo and not much reason why.
  • The Elder Scrolls. Arena wasn't that well-known. Daggerfall a little moreso, but still panned due to its Obvious Beta status...but accepted as True Art and granted "Immunity to Criticism". Then came Morrowind, which was received very well critically and commercially, still being sold in its "game of the year" package eight years after its release. Until about 2006, you were NOT allowed to like it. At ALL. It was derided as pure derivative homogenous garbage, the symbol of everything bad with the gaming industry. What happened when Oblivion came out years later, and likewise given "Game of the Year" awards all around? Mysteriously, the people who had nothing but hatred for Morrowind were nowhere to be found, having declared it a Sacred Cow and given it immunity to criticism.
    • After the release of Skyrim, several "Game of the Year" awards for it, and the spawn of several memes from it, several older fans of The Elder Scrolls derided like they did with Morrowind and Oblivion.
  • Angry Birds. Mention it in a crowd of hardcore gamers, or mention that it's one of the best-selling games of all time and they'll go on some kind of rant about how it's a sign the gaming industry is in trouble, mentioning "Casual" games.
  • Diablo. So much that its Spiritual Successor Torchlight, which isn't as popular, bears Immunity to Criticism...just because it's not Diablo.

Web Animation

  • Red vs. Blue mocked this trope in a PSA about "Ten Things We've Never Seen Posted on an Internet Forum". The first being someone that liked a band before they were popular and being happy about it.

Sarge: Now they've gotten so popular, we get to see them in huge arenas all over the country, and their songs are on the radio all the time. It's great! I'm really happy for them, and for all their success.

  • Parodied in Homestar Runner on the Strong Bad E-Mail "geddup noise". Strong Sad was a fan of The Geddup Noise until it became a cultural sensation, after which he takes to wearing shirts that say "This Is Not A The Geddup Noise T-Shirt" and calling The Geddup Noise a sell-out.
  • Lampshaded by Yahtzee in his review of Amnesia the Dark Descent.

Yahtzee: ...and one should always support the independents... at least until they start making money, the soulless, sellout fucks.


Web Comics

  • Indie Pete of Diesel Sweeties is the extreme version of this trope—indeed, he goes so far as to that he only liked bands "before they released any music". Playing on this theme, Richard Stevens also released a t-shirt design using a Venn diagram. On the left: "Music I Like". On the right: "Music You Like". In the overlap: "Music I Used To Like."
  • Questionable Content discusses this as it relates to Indie bands, resulting in the Theory of Hipster Relativity.
    • And as it relates to tattoos. At least Dora recognizes when she gets caught in it.
    • Mentioned for a laugh in #653, concerning Coffee of Doom itself.
    • As a side note, QC itself has been hit with this, with people dissing it for being just a venue for selling t-shirts
  • Dorm Dorks uses the trope here.
  • Mentioned in VG Cats #269 concerning the complete and total assha- er, "hardcore gamers".
  • Wondermark gets in on the act here.
  • Brax the Alien Rocker, here:

Manny: I like true indie music.
Brax: So, do you like Starflyer 59?
Manny: I did up until now.
Brax: What?! Someone's heard of them, so you don't like them now?
Manny: It's too late. You've ruined it.


Web Original

  • This has been the reaction of some veteran members of Survival of the Fittest following a surge of newcomers to the site.
  • Quite a bit of forums were usually better before those "noobs" and "newbies" came in and ruined it all. This also includes any * Chans.
  • You'll probably never hear anyone glad that their Roleplay chatroom hosts dozens of consistent members. This may be a Justified Trope—but rarely; just because people might be upset by not being given an opportunity to join in a storyline without being told or players playing a private story out and not giving others who can contribute a chance to join in, as well as trying to get a story everyone is involved in going only for one person to suddenly go offline or afk and being forced to either wait for them or continuing without them.
  • In the Vocaloid fandom, wowaka and his songs have been experiencing this for a while, especially after one of his songs, World's End Dancehall, debuted at the top of the Vocaloid weekly rankings with an astronomical 1.5 million points and stayed on top for two weeks straight (a rarity on the rankings).
    • More commonly, Miku Hatsune suffers a lot of backlash purely for being too popular and "stealing the spotlight" from other Vocaloids. The tendency of the media to zero in on Miku rather than other Vocaloids hasn't helped matters.
  • The general consensus on 4chan is that you can tell a meme has run its course when it's mentioned by a news source. Most memes which the general public knows about (Chuck Norris facts, LOLcats, OVER 9000, Rickrolling, All Your Base Are Belong to Us) inspire little but groan from the average poster. However, this is somewhat justified, since 1. Memes are basically jokes, and these people have seen the joke everywhere by this point, and 2. Memes are usually fads, and other media usually only find out about them long after the fad has run its course.
  • Common among certain fans of That Guy With The Glasses. While their concern is mainly with fanwriters focusing too much on the more popular reviewers, they seem to forget that fandom is a hobby and people will write whatever they feel like writing.
    • Especially noteworthy should be Brad Jones, better known as The Cinema Snob. When you read the comments on his own website, every once in a while there as someone who claims he was so much better and funnier before he joined the TGWTG-Crew, and that he should stop making crossovers with the other contributors, because they all suck. Various other members of the site can get this treatment as well.
    • This is true for a butt-load of reviewers, really. But especially regarding AVGN, when even his OWN fans are exceptionally vicious towards him when it comes to almost anything they can imagine. The hilarious thing is though, that the fanbase itself can't even agree on why he sucks now without contradicting themselves. i.e: He curses too much, he doesn't curse enough, the videos are too short now, the videos are too long now, he milks the AVGN persona too much, he keeps making things other than AVGN, there's too many poop jokes, there's not as many poop jokes as there used to be. And 99% percent of them are unable to pin down any specific reason why his videos suck now, often within their own lists of criticism, and begging him to "not suck anymore" for exceptionally vague reasons (if reasons are ever listed).

Western Animation

  • Avatar: The Last Airbender got this treatment after it skyrocketed in popularity during its second and third seasons. The live action movie certainly doesn't help matters.
  • Family Guy got this treatment when it was Uncanceled in 2005.
  • Metalocalypse In-universe, this comes up in the very first episode, "The Curse of Dethklok", when the band plays the "Duncan Hills Coffee Jingle" a reporter asks, "Is Dethklok selling out?" to which Nathan denies and insists that they're just trying to make coffee metal because they want to make everything metal.
    • Parodied in S2 Ep03, "Tributeklok". Dethklok is decried by fans when they refuse to play at a gig they won't make any money off of, and after they do an endorsement for chewing gum, a little boy spits in Nathan's face and calls them sellouts. The band members decide they need to get back in touch with their rock n roll roots which consists of joining their own tribute band and doing nothing that the successful Dethklok would do (not eating fancy food, only using amateur made fliers to advertise their shows, living in poor conditions). However, when they decide to play the gig that they refused to play before, (since it's the opposite of what they would do) the same little boy from earlier calls them sellouts again, saying the real Dethklok would never play it. Deciding it's a no win situation they decide to just go back to being wealthy and successful
  • Some fans say they liked South Park better back during its early years when it was new and edgy, and most kids had to watch the show in secret since their parents had banned it from the house. Now that it is Comedy Central's highest rated show and widely popular, some people don't like it anymore.
    • South Park parodied this in Season 2 Episode 09, "Chef's Chocolate Salty Balls" which focused on film snobbery about independent films being better simply because of the "independent" label: "If you work in the entertainment industry, and you make money, you're a sellout."
    • It was also parodied in Season 3's "Chinpokomon", where the parents thwart the plan of the Japanese toy sellers to brainwash the children with the titular Chinpokomon toys by buying the toys themselves, hence making the kids think the toys now suck.
  • In Sym-Bionic Titan In-universe. Lance joins a band, then gets kicked off after his appearances draws a huge crowd.
  • SpongeBob SquarePants had this treatment as well. Due to its evergrowing popularity in the earlier seasons and the movie, they decided to create more episodes. The popularity might not be a good one, since the newer episodes are labeled as being stale by many fans, although this is perhaps because the show has had a different director and production team since Season 4.
  • Disney animation often gets this treatment due to its influence. Some, such as Ralph Bakshi, see Disney as only creating Follow the Leader tendencies amongst competitors which only discourages creativity.
    • A lot of Disney movies from the animated canon get this effect; while some of the most obscure and less popular movies (The Black Cauldron, Treasure Planet.. although Home on the Range is a general exception) are praised wildly, Disney's most popular films (The Lion King is a prime example) suddenly get bashed for their unevenness and plot issues. It (happily) seems to be a decreasing trend.
  • My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic got this treatment. The more rabid parts of the Hate Dumb accuses people who like the show as being either gay, autistic, a furry, a pedophile, or all of the above.
    • Within the fandom itself, there are a number of first-wave Bronies who have withdrawn from the show since Season 2, because supposedly They Changed It, Now It Sucks. Good luck trying to find a specific example of what changed for the worse though, because the only one that comes up consistently is that Lauren Faust left the show.


  • Troping.

Recursive trope!

    • The hate seems to stem from our terms popping up in other places more frequently. But hey! We seem to be taking over the internet! Aren't you happy?
  • The "Kony 2012" campaign got this reaction shortly after it went viral. Although to be fair, giving only 31% of donations to the cause and oversimplifying the conflict won't keep many supporters by their side. Moreover, Invisible Children is being funded by hardcore Christian fundamentalist organizations. This revelation turned off a lot of agnostic and liberal internetgoers.
  • Every widely known social networking site (Facebook, Myspace, Twitter, etc.) ever. Specifically, for Facebook, the introduction of high school and regional networks was what ruined it FOREVER!
  • One of the recurring mottoes of The Dreaded 4chan, for a surprisingly (or not so surprisingly) long time. You can imagine their reaction when the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade incorporated a Rickroll.
    • Also, mentioning anything related to Project Chanology (the Scientology protests) on most chan boards will now get you flamed, banned, and, possibly, your IP address posted.
    • The coins for Styx's ferryman are already on the Rickroll's eyes, and it now lies on the pyre. All that waits now is the torch. Good night, sweet least, according to 4chan and Encyclopedia Dramatica.
    • This even applies to their memes; pretty much every article on ED about a given meme complains how it got popular and is now unfunny. Logically, the ones that didn't catch on wouldn't have an article at all.
  • The Internet. There's a reason the term Eternal September exists, and some regulars from before the mid-90s even rue the day that Tim Berners-Lee introduced the World Wide Web.
    • Nearly any online community, forum, or game.
    • This was predicted with the Internet itself around the time US President Bill Clinton was promoting "The Information Superhighway", and Vice-President Al Gore was taking credit for inventing it. While the boom in online population has greatly increased the quantity and variety of information and interest-sharing, those watching it in progress didn't feel it did any favors for the quality. Whether it's better or worse now that it's popular depends on the virtual neighborhood, but at least the technology permitting access has gotten faster and smoother.
  • Almost any comedian who makes the transition from relative obscurity on the stand-up circuit to increased fame and public profile (most usually through the television) will lose part of her / his fanbase who will be quick to bemoan the fact that s/he is now a 'sell-out'. Apparently, some jokes become less funny the more people who are laughing at them.
  • Polish Demoscene. When the Polish videogame magazine, CD-Action, began publishing a series about the hitherto rather hermetic demoscene, many old sceners claimed that it ruined the demoscene forever, caused an influx of talentless newbies, and were angry that while they had to go to great lengths to learn about the community in the first place, all those new youngsters know everything by just reading a magazine.
  • A rare Justified Trope example: Beautiful secluded beaches. When only you and maybe a few friends know about the location of a secluded beach, its a wonderful thing but if the wrong people find out about it, before long the word spreads around and lots of people start visiting it which means that the formerly beautiful secluded beach turns into just another busy tourist trap.
This is more to the fact that most beautiful, secluded beaches are fantastic surfing spots, mostly because you can get out onto some fantastic waves without having to worry about grommets and boogie boarders getting undearboard. Here in Australia, if you find yourself in a nice secluded spot with a decent swell, the unwritten rule is that you keep it between yourselves and the locals.
At least along the Florida panhandle, there are quite a few spots owned by the state as "preserves" of sorts where nothing can be built except for the occasional public crapper. They're nearly always deserted, as the more obnoxious tourists tend to gravitate towards spots covered in souvenir shops and overpriced restaurants.
    • Can also extend to camping locations. As Yogi Berra put it: "Nobody goes there anymore. It's too crowded."
  • This attitude pervades the Fur Affinity forums, as well as the site itself. Mention any popular trend in the Furry Fandom and you'll have at least three responses on why it sucks or is a stupid trend. Mention any popular TV show or anime, and for every response praising the show, you'll see at least three trashing it. Mention artstyles, and, if it's popular, will immediately be decried by the fanbase. The Video Games forum is also pretty much exactly this trope through and through. Mention any game that is popular, and the responses will consist of trashing it, saying they don't get why it's fun, saying it's overrated, and naming an obscure/retro/independent video game that is "vastly superior" in just about every way, complete with Fan Haters keeping all the fans of The Elder Scrolls and any game from Japan away from the forums.
Furries in general tend to react this way to certain fursonas, due to the assumption that people choose them out of a misguided desire to be cool rather than because they really identify with them. This happens most often with wolves, foxes, and especially dragons.
  • Two words: Bruce Campbell. Fans want him to be successful and more than a B-movie star, but at the same time they want to keep him all to themselves and hope he never gets that A-listing he deserves, because then a lot of what makes him cool will simply vanish and he'd be just another Hollywood star.
    • As of 2012, his biggest role is one of the three leads of USA Network's hit show Burn Notice. His character is so popular he actually got his own spinoff movie. The fans don't seem to actually mind.
  • Honda is sometimes hit with this. They used to make comparatively tiny that were practical, fuel efficient, and sporty, all at the same time. Now the Accord is a veritable land-yacht and the Civic is barely a compact car, and they're not particularly fun to drive. The fanboys cry that Honda has abandoned them, nevermind that Honda is a publicly traded company with a duty to maximize profits, and it's very hard to make a business case for targeting specifically a very small section of the market to the exclusion of the rest. The kicker is the Honda Fit, which is pretty much everything Honda used to stand for, all in a modern, safe package.
  • Some people have claimed that this has happened to Bionicle, despite the fact that the line is only marginally more successful than when it started. This stems from the belief that the repetitive design of their recent sets is because they're pandering to their, newer, younger audience, even though these claims come from people in their late teens, early twenties while the series is labeled as ages 7–16. You will constantly see topics like "Is Bionicle Selling Out?" on the forums for popular fansite BZ, which are constantly getting squished out by the, thankfully, more intelligent majority.
  • The Steampunk subculture is beginning to be hit with this, even though it's only a few years old. There are purists who believe that the whole essence of Steampunk is to make everything yourself. If you so much as buy a pair of premade goggles, you're just a poser and it should never be allowed to enter the mainstream, as that would dilute it. There are others who believe that it needs to get popular or die. Also, when it enters the mainstream, all of the stuff, goggles, brass and the like will become cheaper, possibly lessing the "Steampunks are Goths with money" mentality that many have.
  • Although not exactly a fandom, many followers of various conspiracy theories seem to subscribe to this mindset; many seem to reject the official record not because they sincerely believe it's wrong and want to know the truth, but simply because it's the official record and has been widely accepted. These 'theorists' then cling to the alternative theories because accepting them makes them feel smarter than the 'sheeple' who accept the official record ("I'm smart enough to see The Truth and you're not!"). This can have interesting results in cases where the official 'lies' are actually more accurate and / or make more sense than the alternative theory, or the alternative theory is patently flawed and nonsensical. Although actual examples are numerous (and far too bitterly contested to be discussed in detail here), many of the alternative theories around 9/11 appear to have attracted these types.
  • When browsing through the comments areas of Behind the Name, every now and again, you'll come across some people commenting on how they used to like this name because nobody had it, but now they don't like it because more people have started using it.

A comment on the name Seth: Cool name. It's masculine, brave, and caring, everything you could want in a boy's name. Too bad it's getting popular.
A comment on the name Elias: ...I only hope that, with the growing popularity of Biblical names, this doesn't become popular. I hate trendy names.
A comment on the name Aaron: This name is getting to be too common!

    • Keep in mind that a name being too common is a legitimate concern-if there's a class with, say, three kids named Michael, then it gets confusing.
    • Sometimes runs into some Unfortunate Implications, especially with names popular among African-Americans. Expect comments with lots of double standards, basically saying that a name more popular with rich white people with the same characteristic is better, such as this:

Comment on the name Shaniqua: Even by ghetto name standards, this is a really butt-ugly name. Come on, it's got that hideous kwa ending to it and everything. Names with the kwa or kwi sound are extremely ugly, unless we're talking about highly un-ghetto-esque names like Quinn. This name sounds hopelessly trashy, and it makes people picture an annoying, somewhat dimwitted girl or woman from the ghetto who either is or will likely end up pregnant by age 16 and who acts like a person from hell towards everyone higher on the social ladder. This name isn't exactly a mature, dignified, sophisticated name, and it will lead to merciless discrimination and jokes.

  • Using the Phillips CD-I games as a source for YouTube Poop has been frowned upon by the members of the You Chew community for years now, although some people are still able to make some funny videos using them.
  • The Daewoo Lacetti (aka the Chevrolet Optra in the rest of the world (except Europe, where it's badged as the Daewoo/Chevrolet Lacetti, and Suzuki Forenza in North America, and Holden Barina in Australia and New Zealand.) was considered great at launch in 2002 (or late 2003, in the rest of the world, 2004 for North America), but by 2008 was considered to have lost its elite luxury image due to offering a basic 1.4-litre version, and going for the Lowest Common Denominator in equipment levels. However, motoring press and the public's opinion differed on this car. Now, with the new General Motors, it, and its successor, the Chevrolet Cruze are seen as a joke by some... but the Popularity Polynomial may come into play here. some kind of plan maybe?
  • One of Fametracker's main features was "The Fame Audit", a rather justified/averted form of this trope, where, as the title suggests, the evaluated the relative merits and demerits of various pop-culture figures, both famous and somewhat under-the-radar, and would determine whether they were getting the appropriate amount of fame, and whether or not for the right reasons. Notable nods included a then-under-the-radar Jon Stewart from when he was only a year into hosting The Daily Show, where they determined that he deserved even more fame. Cut to the Re-Audit four years later when he was already quite famous, and they not only still loved him, but wanted his fame to continue to grow. ([FT] may be gone, but the former editors are still clearly pleased with his current fame.) In spite of the clear cases where they feel are low-talent (Sharon Stone and John Travolta) or on the wane (Michael Jackson circa the 2002 audit) among other things, they are rather objective in their assessments, sometimes choosing to either leave well enough alone or suggest a bump up in fame for people they might otherwise be ambivalent about who are nonetheless unpretentious and enjoyable enough to deserve some sort of extended presence. Beyond that, they have recommended that stars they have liked stay at their exact same spot of fame lest they become too overexposed or pushed into overly high-profile projects (see: Will Ferrell and Steven Soderbergh via their audits), or consequently a bump down for said cases either already beyond that point (Stephen Colbert's audit) or simply in need of going away in order to refocus (Lisa Kudrow and Edward Norton).
  • This is common in the feminist blogosphere. From reading posts on feminist blogs, you would think that in order for any sort of media to be considered feminist it has to be made by an atheist bisexual multiracial polyamorist with cerebral palsy who is doing everything herself and does everything for free(because making money is bowing to the patriarchy!), and it has to only come on at local independent festivals.
    • Or maybe it's just that privileged people oftentimes don't get the problems of marginalized groups right when making media.
  • Fixed gear bicycles used to be the domain of weirdbeards and bicycle couriers. Hipsters adopted them because they liked the courier aesthetic and fixies immediately became uncool. Now that the fad's mostly died off, the same weirdbeards and couriers are still riding their bikes, but now it's easier for them to get parts.
  • When the Netherlands decriminalized marijuana, its use among teenagers dropped from 11% to 8%. Guess we know who was just trying to be a rebel.
  • Happens constantly in politics. When a politician is polling at 5%, they can be a political gadfly, constantly taking principled, unpopular stances. Once they get up to 40% and there's a chance they could actually win, their activist base will often accuse them of turning into just another politician.


This page was awesome...until everyone started adding examples. Now this page sucks.

  1. the owner at the time felt it was wrong to air them on TV because it alienated fans who bought tickets.
  2. although with the differences that SS2 is about the horror of being alone, while BioShock is about the horror of having zombies climbing all over the place. There are also some good points about Objectivism being made, but these tend to be glossed over.