Deok Mi’s inadvertent mentoring of Hyo Jin is so kind and understanding. There are MANY aspects of the show’s representation of fangirling that is v problematic. However, the way her character is as much about fostering community and joy among young girls, and trying to support them in celebrating their fannish loves in ways that (usually) keep them safe and keep their fangirling respectful.

I’m for defo glossing the uglier sides of fandom, and I don’t know that the show can and/or will ever address the distortion enacted by the cult of celebrity. But there are parts of Deok Mi’s understanding of fannish practices and fan communities that resonate with my own enjoyment of connecting with others through or by way of a cherished art or artistic practitioner. Like this old Dramabeans.