Monday, August 13, 2012

Goodbye, "VICTORiOUS"

On VICTORiOUS' creator Dan Schneider's blog, he finally admitted what other sites have been saying for a while: The plug has been pulled on Tori Vega's show.  Though there are still fifteen episodes that have yet to air, no more will be made after that thanks to the Nickelodeon executives.  Mr. Schneider clearly stated that neither he nor any members of the cast are responsible; his exact words were, "I ask that you please not be angry with Victoria, or Leon, Liz, Ariana, Avan... or ANY of the Victorious cast members or staff. They all wanted Victorious to continue – so did I."  I don't even think the Nickelodeon staff knows when each of the episodes will air, but I seriously hope they don't drag out the periodic airing of the "never before seen" ones for over a year like Disney Channel did with Lizzie McGuire.
I've said before that VICTORiOUS is my favorite show, but it holds a personal distinction for me for other reasons as well.  I've adored numerous television programs over the years--they range from Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers to Weakest Link to Scooby-Doo to Growing Pains to Bill Nye the Science Guy to American Idol--but, almost always, I was late to the game; that is, I hadn't followed them from day one.  Many of them were in reruns for years before I even knew about them, but others were well into their continuing stories by the time I was "hip" to them.  As much as I talked about Lizzie McGuire, I couldn't have cared less about it until around November 2002, and the show had wrapped filming months prior.  In fact, the last series I at least somewhat followed throughout its entire run was That's So Raven, which debuted almost a decade ago.  I did watch the series premiere of The Suite Life of Zack and Cody, but my interest in that largely waned after a mere year or two.  Yet, I can still remember watching the pilot of VICTORiOUS the first time it aired, in between an airing and re-airing of the Kids' Choice Awards.
Does the impending end of VICTORiOUS mean that I have to stop watching or even liking it? No way! Even if Nickelodeon suddenly stops airing the reruns, I've got all the DVDs that have been released so far, and I'll find a way to purchase the future release(s) whenever they come out.  I can tell you that Victoria Justice and her show might very well stop being the dominating topic of my online posts and conversations, but that doesn't mean I've stopped being a fan, though people might assume that's the case.  I can still remember in mid-2000 when my mom told me to take down a collage of Mork & Mindy and Scooby-Doo pictures I had made myself a year prior because, as she said, "You're not into Mork & Mindy anymore."  It's true that I'd largely stopped talking about several months before, but that was just because, after Fox Family had removed it from their line-up, I had no way to watch it anymore.  I still liked the show, and got right back into it in 2002 when a newly added independent channel began showing reruns; the same thing happened again when I obtained the first season on DVD three years later.  It was just quite difficult to be a die-hard fan of a show that I couldn't watch, though I can see why my mom would have thought I no longer cared for it.
Two points I want to make before closing this.  One: Don't be quick to assume that no one will remember VICTORiOUS in the years to come.  I remember reading an article online titled, "Voice of Velma Amazed at Lasting Impact of 'Scooby-Doo,'" where a voice-actress-turned-college-professor was surprised how many of her students were fans of "those meddling kids"; one of her students reportedly based his dissertation around the show.  My point in bringing that up is simply this: VICTORiOUS may be largely forgotten five, ten, or fifteen years from now...but it could just as easily be largely remembered.  There's a number of factors it depends on, many of which are out of most people's hands.  It surprises me how many people still are fond of Lizzie McGuire, even years after it ceased production.
Here's my final point: Don't be quick to assume that Victoria, or any young Disney or Nickelodeon star, will end up like Britney Spears or Justin Timberlake.  When I was a die-hard fan of Hilary Duff, I heard again and again that her devolving into a sex symbol was imminent, and that I would be ashamed of ever being her fan at some point.  However, that child star never did such a thing.  Yes, she did star in a film or two that I'd rather not watch, but those received very little fanfare.  Instead of going out and getting drunk regularly, or appearing on the cover of countless tabloids, Hilary got married, and now has a legitimate son.  That's a far cry from Britney, Justin, Lindsay, and even Miley.  Assuming that Victoria Justice, Nathalia Ramos, Debby Ryan, Miranda Cosgrove, David Henrie, Cody Linley, or any of the rest of them will suffer the same fate is, frankly, judgmental, and that makes it wrong; see Matthew 7:1-5 and Romans 2:1 for proof.  You don't even know them, so, how can you know what their future holds?
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