In responding to your peers, provide feedback on their topic analysis and descri

In responding to your peers, provide feedback on their topic analysis and describe the value of the social sciences lens for understanding popular culture.
Make sure you support your response with the readings from this module and any additional resources if needed.
Peer 1
In the discussion for module 4 – Fandoms and the Humanities – I focused on the fandom for the discontinued television show Firefly. The show only had one season and was then cancelled by the network due to low viewing numbers. Fans were absolutely outraged by the cancellation and the network decided to make a movie rather than another season. The movie rapped most of the questions from season one but not enough to satisfy the die-hard fans of the show. The show was the sci-fi genre which made the network question its relatability and was part of the reason why it was cancelled. They didn’t realize that the fans were what made the show so popular after it’s cancellation.
Through the social lens rather than the humanities lens I was able to take a deeper look into how the cancellation of the show impacted the fans rather than how the fans impacted the making of the movie and fanfiction. In Essig’s (2016) thesis he complied data from the show and transformed it to have an alternate ending rather than the movie that was produced. Without the cancellation he (and many others) never would have written this alternate ending and the Serenity comic series never would have come into existence (Graceling-Moore, 2016). I understand more on how much the cancellation of Firefly impacted fans on an emotional level versus when I was looking at the show from the humanities lens. Fans were completely outraged by the cancellation that they retaliated against Fox network and Universal Studios bought the rights to create the movie Serenity (Essig, 2016). 
Essig, A.C. (April 2016). Analyzing Whedon’s Firefly as Impetus for a Development Strategy for an Alternate History, Sci-Fi Television Series. Ohio University. Retrieved December 1, 2021:
Graceling-Moore, R. (November 17th 2016). 15 Reasons to be Thankful that Firefly was Cancelled. ScreenRant. Retrieved December 1, 2021:
Peer 2
The topic I decided to revisit is the video game Animal Crossing: New Horizons. Animal Crossing is a sandbox slice-of-life game that mixes anthropomorphic neighbors with quiet and simple quests such as fishing and gardening. The game itself has no end and continues to progress as the player chooses it.
The reason I decided to return to this topic is because I feel there is a strong social element to the game franchise. The addition of New Horizons came on the Nintendo Switch and could not have come at a more opportune time in history. It released in March of 2020 during what would be for many as a global quarantine. The work and social aspects of our lives were put on pause as we were told to stay indoors for several months.
The social sciences are our explanation of how we behave in society. It also helps us understand situations that involve an understanding of diversity and cultural differences. A game like Animal Crossing taps into activities such as farming, decorating, and fostering interpersonal relationships. The very core of the game is innate to us as human beings, despite us being the only humans in contact. It is the social aspect coupled with the perfect timing that made New Horizons such as massive success.
From the standpoint of a Natural and Applied Science lens, Animal Crossing: New Horizons is able to be successful not only based on the coincidental timing of its release, but on the pinpoint factors that make a video game popular. First is the role of immersion, which is the ability to filter out external stimuli and mentally focus on one thing. Another is achievement, which can be seen in either forms of progression or in rewards such as rare items, trophies, or other things of monetary value (Ryan). The last one is content knowledge. This differs from game to game as some rely more heavily on the role-playing aspect than others. This could be as simple as finding out what a non-playable character’s favorite food or gift is. By becoming good friends with a villager, you unlock a special currency called Nook Miles, giving you the achievement! Being able to use these three can feed into one another and make a scientific equation for an addicting game.
Ryan, Blog & News. What Makes Video Games Fun. Nov 22, 2019

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