It’s been an active week in The Hunger Games fandom, with Beetee and the District 13 rebels hacking TheCapitol.pn and the official Hunger Games social media channels. Yesterday we saw the release of six District 13 Citizen posters, marking the start of the rebellion’s takeover of all of Lionsgate’s carefully laid out Capitol marketing.
As fans we’ve gotten a lot lately. Propos. A teaser trailer. There are all the bells and whistles (that fingerprint device pairing was pretty freaking badass), the cool viral marketing campaign (the Konami Code? lolz), and yet another cool new website (did you notice the CO.IN domain spells Coin?). And yet, as awesome as all of this is, a lot of fans are struggling with an odd sense of guilt over the ingratitude we feel.
Because at the end of the day, this fandom follows one person. It’s not the Boy with the Bread or the Boy with the Snares or Panem’s Adonis from District 4. It’s the Girl on Fire.
It’s Katniss Everdeen.
Wait, who is that again? Oh, right. It’s that teenage girl that we’ve officially seen a whopping two seconds of since March in Catching Fire’s DVD release. (I’m not counting set photos)
Don’t get me wrong, I loved the Our Leader the Mockingjay teaser trailer from Comic Con. It gave me chills and whoever cut that teaser did an amazing job. But most of what we saw of Katniss was the back of her head. When we finally did get to see her, she wowed us with a mere four words.
But that still doesn’t cover up the fact that an extra with an exaggerated blink technically got more screen time in that teaser than she did.
In May, Lionsgate launched an entirely new website at TheHungerGamesExclusive.com and managed to whip out the first issue of a whole lot of No Katniss. They put two stunning Capitol TV propos in theaters. With No Katniss.
Once again, there’s that guilty ingratitude. We all loved seeing Coin. We drooled over the stills and that amazing interview with Nina and Francis. We clawed our faces over Peeta’s tortured facial features and Johanna’s wig. Yet it feels like with each new release the honeymoon effect wears off quicker and quicker. It’s gotten so bad that mere seconds after we get to see six new character posters, we’re already thinking, “NEXT!”
Is this intentional? Is Lionsgate’s tactic this time to make us all so starved that when we finally get to see Katniss in November (it’s seriously starting to feel like that will be our first real look at her) that we buy tickets for consecutive showtimes for days on end just to make up for the last 8 months?
At first I thought it was promotional conflict with X-Men, and to be honest, it probably was for a little while. But X-Men came and went and we still saw No Katniss. Then we thought maybe Lionsgate was doing some kind of in-Panem marketing thing where just like in the book, the people in the districts had no idea whether Katniss was alive or dead until Beetee’s propos said otherwise.
But we saw Beetee in a propo, and it had No Katniss. No big deal, we thought. All will be made right at Comic Con.
Then Comic Con came and went and Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, and Liam Hemsworth were all no-shows. There wasn’t even a Hall H panel. The official Comic Con poster, while pretty cool, featured a peacekeeper. We saw Katniss in the teaser, but only just barely.
Our Katniss-anxiety is building. It feels like back in early summer when all we were getting was really old Catching Fire imagery with book quotes. Where were the stills? The overly-Photoshopped Entertainment Weekly covers? The trailer, for Peeta’s sake? The comments became a continuous bitch fest that fueled everyone’s flames higher and higher.
As fansites, we don’t like to see leaks. We want to see things in HQ with no spoilers in the best way possible. And yet people crack into almost every release, resulting in what has become a sort of studio arm-twisting by rebellious fans, and one starts to wonder if maybe it’s because of this lack of Katniss. To be honest, it’s probably not, but it doesn’t change the fact that some fans are desperate and others are losing interest.
Yesterday was exciting. We “hacked” into the Capitol website and connected to the D13 mainframe to find a blank canvas themed to District 13. Our minds flashed to one thing.
But it turned out all of that was just another chapter in this seemingly neverending Katniss drought. Word got out that there were six character posters debuting and a list of names began circulating. While many of us gasped at the name Effie being included, we also couldn’t believe what wasn’t there.
There was No Katniss Everdeen.
We joked months ago that it would be October before we saw Katniss in marketing, but those jokes are starting to become a reality. It’s August for crying out loud, and we’ve only had a small taste. We are a mere 105 days away from the movie’s official release in theaters. Just how long are we supposed to survive on “I am. I will.” in Lionsgate’s eyes? Where is Katniss Everdeen?
Granted, you can also say there are a whole 105 more days to bring her out and that we’re just a bunch of impatient nerds with nothing better to do with our time than complain about a fictional character.
If Lionsgate is indeed following an in-Panem marketing scheme, they’ve already shown Katniss declaring herself with the rebellion. It’s time to bring her out. This impatient nerd is ready.