The 2009 Drama Llama Awards


Blame it on the Oscars. Or the financial crisis. Or the need to create jobs.

But I noticed, there's one area of online existence that hasn't received its fair share of official ceremonies.

And yet, it's fascinated and horrified big audiences with its brazen acting, intricate plot-lines, over-the-top character development, and flashy song-and-dance routines....

Online forum dramatics-- and the Drama Kings and Queens who reign supreme.

Anyone who's spent much time in any sort of public forum on virtually any topic-- from blogging to fishing to cheese-sandwich-assembly-- knows what I'm talking about.

Those actors and actresses who hone their thespian craft on message boards-- drawing the eyes of all around with outrageous pronouncements, bitter rivalries, nefarious conspiracy theories and widely polarizing subject matter.

The folks who enter with a bang, leave with a "Goodbye Cruel World" and return later, reborn and cleansed, like the phoenix from the ashes...

Or, y' know, with a new avatar and the same tell-tale way of typing.

These are the candidates for the Drama Llama Awards. (The "Llammies.")

Now you might say doing an award ceremony for this sort of thing would only encourage online actors to give it all they've got. That it would glorify the less-than-desirable attributes of online life into one big ol' Festival of Trolling and Narcissism.

But let's take a look at the benefits of developing an official ceremony in praise of this, our most resilient, primal and deeply-rooted online art...


Creating New Jobs
First of all, the Llammies would help create jobs. Don't just think of the high-end avatar designers, the web hosts, the voting app developers, and the advertising campaigns that would lead up to the awards themselves.

But think of the fulfilling careers many talented writers could have in penning powerful farewell and comeback speeches for forum members!

Like the classic "You Done Me Wrong" speech which spreads guilt across the forum masses like extra-smooth peanut butter. Blame to those directly involved... Blame to those who logged on not taking sides in times of great injustice. Like Germans not speaking out against Nazism. Or, y'know, just because you happened to be offline for an hour or two and missed the hubbub.

These writers could also give polish to the "On Further Consideration, I Have Decided I Will Not Remain Stifled By Naysayers" speech. Where the lead actor has taken a brief hiatus from his or her dramatic, public career and has returned... renewed, envigorated and taking their art to a whole new level.

To a lesser degree, these writers could supplement their incomes year-round with passive-aggressive notes to their clients' friends, family and significant others-- explaining why the author has been giving them the cold shoulder for a few weeks. Those kind of "we need to talk" notes.

I see a whole market here.


Providing Inexpensive Entertainment and Fame Alternatives
Cable prices are skyrocketing, movie prices are going up and yet household budgets are tighter than ever. But the Drama Llama Awards and the acts leading up to them would give online audiences a unique alternative to current reality television programs, at one flat rate.

Like reality TV, the Drama Llamas would allow regular joes and josies to have their fifteen minutes of fame. But unlike reality television shows, where the lead actors and actresses are cast from thousands, the Llammies mean just anyone with determination, shaky self-esteem and a dash of flair has an chance at becoming an internet sensation-- with only the price of an Internet connection.


Improving Morale
Because tight finances are preventing many from taking vacations this year, or indulging in luxury items, morale is taking a dive and glamour is eroding from our daily lives. So what better way to add a bright spot of razzle-dazzle, excitement and anticipation by having an awards ceremony? Everyone will totally forget they've been laid-off, the mortgage is overdue and little Timmy needs braces, when they're distracted by critical questions like:

  • "Who Will Win for Best Supporting Sycophant?"
  • "How Many Avatar Changes Can Our Metamorphasizing Starlet Have During a Single Performance?"
  • "Who Will Snatch the Award for Most Blatant Scam Denial of The Year?"
  • And "Who Will Win for Best Long-Running, Multiple-Thread Serial Grudge?"

Enhancing Research and Education
And, not to be forgotten, would be the Llammies' contribution to the field of education, particularly in the areas of psychology and self-help. As a result of the Llammies, psychologists, psychiatriasts, cultural anthropologists and stand-up comics will get the opportunity to examine the most extensive body of data on human behavior ever collected into one spot.

This will prove invaluable to further our collective knowledge about life-affecting challenges like Narcissistic Personality Disorder, schizophrenia, manic-depression, esteem issues and the connection between troll comments and poor spelling.


Amateur online dramatics is as much a part of the human experience as war, love, and rubber-necking. Don't we owe it to ourselves to channel the shock and horror of these forum performances into something more... well... sparkly?

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Humorbloggers
Humor-blogs
Bloggerella

25 comments:

Daniel Ng said...

LOL! What a brilliant idea! Love it & thanks for the good laugh!

Jenn Thorson said...

Daniel- Hey, you're very welcome! Have a good Monday! :)

Jonny's Mommy said...

Are you mocking me? I know you are. I am so out of here. I will never, ever, ever, blog again. The horror! The HORROR!!!!!! I feel so spat upon, so crushed and ....just flat out abused. I feel as if you have ripped my heart out and stomped ALL THE HELL OVER IT.

I am gone! Goooone! No longer on the Internet! Noooooo more!

And you'd better be reading this RIGHT NOW! Or I will be so upset.

Jonny's Mommy said...

Oh crap. That whole "I'm gone" speech? Yeah...so over the top *blush* *blush* Apologies all over the place. Of course I was just kidding and am so glad to be back...under a soon-to-be-announced new name, of course!

:-)

Jenn Thorson said...

Jonny's Mommy- I can see you will be a serious contender for the 2009 Llammies! A real drama queen up-and-comer if ever there was one. I'm very impressed!

Thank you for the demonstration of your talents. I'm sure you'll be hearing from us.

Joel Klebanoff said...

How about an award for the most empty-headed blog writing? I've never won an award. Although my neuroses and their influence on my blog may be enough to win me a trip to your proposed podium.

Da Old Man said...

Chatboards without drama would just be so boring, so thank you for finally giving the actors their props.

Jenn Thorson said...

Joel- The empty-headed blog writing would only be covered by the Llammies if you were to promote said empty-headed blog through a series of forum posts first:

1.) Lamenting how no one comes to empty-headed blog
2.) Asking people for a criticism of empty-headed blog and
3.) Then insulting each responder in the thread because you didn't like their criticism.

Anyway, I would prefer to give your blog more of a "Most Self-Deprecating Sense of Humor" award. That seems much more fair.


DaOldMan- Hey, I try to do what I can for the blogging community, make it as productive as possible. :)

Tiggy said...

A great idea!

Other categories could include the coveted "Flair With Smileys" or "Most Usernames Originating from One IP Address"...

Jenn Thorson said...

Tiggy- Definitely that latter one will produce some very interesting choices!

Matt said...

I always love an internet "tough guy." The web is riddled with them.

Jenn Thorson said...

Matt- And I'm sure there's a nice Llammie award set aside just for them!

The Great Fox Hating Potentate said...

Wow.

Methinks this might be a reaction to the recent spate of Blogcatalog discussions begging the administrators to delete accounts because, "I'm so fed up, I can't take it anymore, oh God, oh God, the inhumanity of blogger to man!"

:D

Perhaps (and maybe this should be in a completely separate category, kind of like Foreign Film) there should be awards granted for:

1) Blogger who adds the most random people on a social networking site as "friends" for the sole purpose of luring them to his/her site promoting pedicure services and digital cameras.

2) The most plaintive plea of "Please, please won't you come read my blog, it's not all like all the other diaries online!"

Great idea and well written :D

Jenn Thorson said...

Julian- Heh-- it's more of an overview of things LIKE that (I'd watched some pretty big drama over the three years of blogging), though certainly not that specifically.

I've been thinking about this sort of thing for a long time-- I just liked Oscars angle.

I think your points one and two really should have a place in the Llammies... Possibly along with 3.)

"Poster Who Keeps Bumping Own Thread Wondering Why Everyone Is Not Responding/Neglecting Them." When they first posted at, say, 4am.

Tony Single said...

Can I be first in line for that "Please, please won't you come read my blog, it's not all like all the other diaries online!" award? Pretty please? With sugar on top? :p

Jenn Thorson said...

Tony- I think you'll have to work some more guilt in there--- perhaps a "Come to my blog or the cute little piggies get it," theme. :)

Prefers Her Fantasy Life said...

Love it! Maybe they could be recruited from the Jerry Springer show. Or Judge Judy.

Jenn Thorson said...

Meg- More like recruited FOR. :) Although I'd really rather see them get the counseling help they needed rather than just lob chairs at each other.

Bee said...

I'm trying to figure out what category I would be in. May I suggest a Clueless Starlet one? I have no idea what some of the abbreviations are. The other day I had to google 'IRL'. I hang my head in shame.

Jenn Thorson said...

Bee- Oh, those abbreviations are nuts, though! How would you ever GUESS?

I can't tell you HOW long I spent thinking "DH" was the initials of this one woman's husband, only to find OTHER women's husbands were ALSO "DH."

The coincidence seemed a bit much.

Aoi said...

There is actually a credible argument among economists for a bailout for bloggers, due to the real stimulus it would create for the economy. You're right on the cutting edge of economic thinking here!

Karen said...

You totally nailed me tootsie-pop! It's like psycho-serendippiddy, no psycho-serendipidie, no make that cosmic knowledge or something! Cool! I gotta go make my tinfoil hat now. Bye.

Jenn Thorson said...

Aoi- Well, that's shocking, given the sorts of grades I got in Economics in college. :) You just do not want to know...

Karen- Aw, you aren't any drama queen, but I appreciate that you can really style a tinfoil hat-- not everyone can pull that off with such elegance. :)

dani c said...

Awesome idea !!! I know of some that deserve this award. Can I put in the nominations ?

Melanie said...

Terrific idea! You also need a category for the biggest comeback. You know, that person who is so gone, actually leaves for 2 minutes and then makes their big comeback. Or did I just miss that category?