Angry Fans May Have Actually Driven Down The 100's Ratings

Illustration for article titled Angry Fans May Have Actually Driven Down The 100's Ratings

Fans were not pleased about the major death in last week’s episode of The 100. (Neither were we.) And since then, they’ve been furiously working not just to declare their displeasure—but to make the show itself pay a heavy price.

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Spoilers for last week’s episode ahead...

Thanks to Twitter fans have more access to creators and decision makers than ever before, and also more ability to organize a massive campaign in a hurry. Fans of The 100 quickly showed how angry they were, by targeting creator Jason Rothenberg. In just 24 hours, he lost more than 10,000 followers, and his numbers have continued a steady (albeit smaller) decline since.

Ouch.
Ouch.

But Twitter, as a metric of audience engagement is relatively new—and officially, no one really gives a hoot if a showrunner’s follower count plummets after an unpopular story move.

Which was why 100 fans took a different tack last night. They tuned out the show, and focused on getting their competing hashtag, #LGBTFansDeserveBetter, trending. The hashtag was selected because the character who was killed off was one of the few explicitly queer characters on the show.

The hashtag did trend, and The 100 did not crack Nielsen’s Top 5 shows, as measured via Twitter. More importantly, The 100 suffered its worst ratings all season. Only 1.25 million people watched, as compared the week before when 1.39 million viewers tuned in.

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It might not be fair to chalk this dip entirely up to fandom wrath—numbers were down across the board, with even The Big Bang Theory scoring its lowest numbers of the season. But when your show already has a tiny audience, antagonizing a large chunk of them might not go so well for you.


Contact the author at alex.cranz@gizmodo.com.
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DISCUSSION

I am 30 and my wife is 37. We both enjoy tv, but have never gotten into fanfics, fan sites, etc. when Lexa was killed we were distraught. It was weird for us because we’ve never had a tv characters death effect us like this did. Even saying it out loud seems silly, but we were truely upset about this death. Why? We are already vey under represented on tv, and the fact that so many lesbian characters die starts to really hit home (one website today is running at 76 lesbians dead in all tv history). And we get it: she was on another show, it was to move the show forward, etc.

She died barely 5 mins after consummating her relationship with Clarke. It felt like shock therapy. You have a happy loving gay relationship? Nope, you gonna die. I think the queer community, especially queer women, are tired of seeing themselves represented this way.

But I think The 100s ratings going down is a good thing. I think it shows that we are finally standing up against bury the gays and that representation is important. Also, our community raised over $30,000 for the Trevor Project last night inspite of The 100.