7 Fan Terms That You May Not Know ...

By Lydia

7 Fan Terms That You May Not Know ...

There are a lot of fan terms out there that people probably don't know. These terms are used in so many ways, no matter what the medium your referencing (books, movies, music, TV, etc) and what you're a fan of. Of course there's no way to name all of them here, but here are some basic fan terms that you may not have known before.

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1 Ship

This is a fan term that is used when talking about two characters or people that you wish would date each other, or people that actually date and you just support it. If there are two characters that you think would just be so cute together, you say "I ship them." Then you can have so much wordplay with this: "I will go down with this ship," "this ship will not sink," etc. You can ship multiple pairings and some people ship two straight males/females together just because that's who they want to see together. There are no limits!


So now that you know what shipping is, you can learn the next step: the OTP. OTP stands for "one true pairing." This is the one couple in the show/movie/band or whatever it is that you want together more than anything. They are your absolute favorite! Then there's the BrOTP, which are the people that you love together but just as friends, hence the bro part of it. You love their interactions, but don't see a romance there so you just want them to be best buddies.

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3 Fangirl/Fanboy

This term can be used different ways. It can be used as a reaction, such as "I'm fangirling/fanboying," or it can be used to describe yourself - "I am a fangirl/fanboy." In the first usage it is to be applied when you're super excited about something you're a fan of, whether it's a new book, episode, song, sequel, or anything else that applies. The second usage is what you call yourself when you're a superfan of something and you get really excited when you hear or talk about it.

4 Feels

This is a term that is pretty straightforward. It's short for feelings. When someone says they have feels or can't handle their feels, it's the same thing as if they say feelings or emotions. It just means that whatever you're watching or listening to is making you feel something usually sad or romantic.

Updated on 5/20/2023

Feeling is an important part of the movie-watching experience. It’s what keeps us engaged and enthralled, and it’s what makes movies so powerful and influential. When someone talks about having “feels”, they’re referring to the emotional reactions they experience when watching a movie. These reactions can range from joy and excitement to sadness and sorrow.

Feeling can be triggered by a variety of elements in a movie, including the plot, the characters, the music, and the visuals. It’s the combination of all of these elements that create a powerful emotional response in viewers. A movie that evokes strong feelings can be incredibly moving and memorable, and it’s these kind of movies that stay with us long after we’ve watched them.

Feeling can also be expressed in different ways. Some people may express their feelings through tears, while others may express them through laughter. Some people may express their feelings through words, while others may express them through art. No matter how someone chooses to express their feelings, it’s important to remember that feeling is a natural and important part of the movie-watching experience.

5 Canon/Headcanon

This one took some digging on my part when I first started seeing it around. I couldn't figure out what it meant! A headcanon is when you have a storyline that you wish was part of the show/movie/character background. This could be something as simple as "I have a headcanon that (insert person) really likes to play chess because..." It doesn't have to be a huge story. When something is canon though, that means it really has happened in the show/movie. When something happens, like a relationship finally comes together, people get excited that it is finally canon.

6 Fanfic

A fanfic is a shortened version of the word fanfiction. A fanfiction is when a fan writes a story that includes character or even real people. Fans of a certain band might choose a crazy random adventure for the band to go on and then write a story about it. These stories have chapters, genres, and everything books would have and they're all done by fans. Some of them can be a bit racy and others are just plain old fun that fans enjoy reading.

Updated on 5/20/2023

Fanfiction, or fanfic, is a form of fan-created literature that is based on an existing work. Fanfic is typically written by fans of a particular series, movie, TV show, or book and follows the same characters or settings as the original work. The stories can be anything from a continuation of the original story to an entirely new plot.

Fanfics are often written in the form of novels, novellas, or short stories and are usually posted on fanfiction websites or shared among fans. They can be written in any genre, from romance to horror, and can be as long or as short as the author desires. Fanfics can also be written in the form of fan art, which is artwork that is inspired by the original work.

Though fanfic is created by fans, it is not considered an official part of the original work and is not officially endorsed by the original creator. This means that fanfic writers are not legally allowed to make any money from their work. However, fanfic can be a great way for fans to express their creativity and explore their favorite stories in new and interesting ways.

7 Fandom

A fandom is what it's called when there is a group of fans. You are a member of a fandom. A lot of fandoms have nicknames such as Whovians (Doctor Who), Monsters (Lady Gaga), Directioners (One Direction), and Sherlockians (Sherlock). You can be in an infinite number of fandoms, but there are some rules - OK, only two rules. These rules are the following: do not judge the fandom by one fan and do not judge one fan by the fandom. If the fandom is crazy as a whole that doesn't mean every individual is and vice versa.

Being a super fan of something can be so much fun! If you go on websites like Tumblr where fans thrive, you'd see a lot of these terms, but they are also used on other social media as well as in conversations. What terms didn't you know? What would you add?

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This article is life! Amazing job! I knew each one on the list! I guess I'm just a professional fan girl

Love this. Finally someone knows!

Is it sad that i knew them all

This cracked me up! I use most of these terms on a daily basis and totally never considered the fact that it's not normal for most people! They're all pretty spot on though

How about the term 'Superwholock' meaning a combination of supernatural, doctor who and bbc sherlocks famdoms!

I'm a fangirl of SuperWhoLock and Johnlock and Destiel are my OTPs!!!!!!!!!

Thank you! I have been wondering for months what BROTP means

Well, that was informative for an older gal like me! I didn't know anything on that list! Thanks!

But you did leave out asdfghjkl which is almost like feels but little different

I'm a Directioner and I ship Larry as a romance!'

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