Baby Cthulhu and Fan Merchandise
Hello little Cthulhu. Doesn’t the plushie look adorable?
H.P. Lovecraft must be rolling in his grave.
He wrote the creature as a thing from beyond the stars, so vast and alien that no human mind remains sane after encountering it.
And now it has become a cuddly toy for kids.
Such is the effect of the commercial world. For example George Lucas and the Angry Birds makers are making more money from the fan merchandise than of their movies and the game itself.
I don’t think that J.K Rowling is looking down her nose at the moola from Harry Potter wand and broom look-alikes and other items her books have inspired.
Some fans really want to be part of the world they love and the related knick knacks make the connection more real for them.
But where goes the limit before the items get way too tacky and become detractive, blasphemous even?
Han Solo in carbon chocolate? Darth Vader bobbleheads? Jedi bathrobes?
I have a dark confession to make.
I know why people want those items.
As a teenager, I used to write fan fiction in Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time world. I also bought a Great Serpent Ring merchandise, just like the one his sorceresses wear.
I’ve even cosplayed as one of those sorceresses (that is, had a nice costume on so I’d look like one). It wasn’t Halloween.
Having fans that dedicated to a world I have created would be really awesome. And if a company offered to make stuff based on my books, I would seriously consider it.
But please, no bobbleheads of my characters. Naming your children after a fictional person is kind of weird too.
Do tell, how much is too much for you? Have you ever bought fan merchandise? Would you allow fan items to be made of your books? What kind of merchandise is tasty and what’s tacky?