Since we are discussing the whole issue of calling/describing ourselves as fans vs “well-wishers”, I would just like to quickly say that being a fan has benefits. My current trip includes meeting two (former) fans. Yep, fans may be intensely interested in a particular subject or artist. But in my experience they *do* have other interests, too – otherwise I wouldn’t have made friendships that have survived across years, distances and even fan inactivity. I don’t perceive the word as negative. Maybe I did at some point, but I don’t believe that slapping a new label on it, makes a big difference, anyway.
If I was at home, I’d get deeper into the discussion. But just to say: I am a fan, and I am not ashamed of it.
Pop!Thorin sends best wishes from Bad Homburg.