Teenage girls face the boy band dilemma

By J1 Reporter Lily Weindel

The fans of popular boy band One Direction are typically described by the media as “crying little girls.”

Even with these negative views, junior Mo Flanery won’t deny that she is a part of this fan base, though. Flanery is just one of the many Marian girls who have gone through, or are going through, a big One Direction phase.

Yet, because of their fanbase of mainly teenage girls, the band wasn’t taken seriously by certain areas of the music industry. Despite their chart topping albums and countless awards, their fans are often dismissed as “screaming and obsessive girls with the members on their bedspread,” as Flanery put.

Even with successes, international tours, and tens of thousands of dedicated fans, bands like these can often be ridiculed throughout the industry for their mainly younger female fanbase, and often those girls get a fair share of mockery.

“They try to make the fans seem psychotic,” Flanery said. “The adult media didn’t have a good representation of them.”

Girls are constantly mocked or belittled for their interests. Whether it’s politics, heavy metal music, soccer, or cooking, negative baggage always seems to come with it. Liking popular boy bands is a clear example of this.

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One Direction Concert photo by junior Chrissy Gulseth.

“Girls who liked them were always viewed as very ditzy and basic and probably only liked them because they were cute,” junior Chrissy Gulseth said.

The negative view of these girls seems to come from how obsessed they may appear over these boys, when in reality the majority of their fans are just dedicated to the music and the band members.

“Their music is so good and their songs are groovy,” said junior Cassie Wolf, who is currently a fan, “but [the members of One Direction] are overall good and respectful people.”

She explains how these artists are role models for a lot of their younger fans, and compared to some other popular artists of today, these members do show more respect than other popular music artists. They also speak out about issues regarding the views of their teenage girl fanbase.

“I was a young impressionable girl and I was at a stage in my life when it was very important that they were positive because it affected me personally,” Gulseth said.

Overall, the boy band dilemma overall reflects how difficult it is to be passionate about an interest as a teenage girl. Although this is not the most pressing issue that affects girls, it’s a gateway to see how little things, like assuming all fans of one band are immature and childish, can show how today’s culture reflects teenage girls in such a negative light. But this doesn’t stop fans from truly appreciating them, because, as Gulseth said, “I spent $300 for tickets for a reason, they were an amazing band.”

 

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