Sunday, May 22, 2011

the steam-powered phenomenon

Time for me to get back on the normal blogging circuit after this week's guest blog post and the relative online absence of the past few weeks. By the way, I do welcome guest posts as long as I can read the material to determine its relevance to my blog. 

Things I have learned this week:

  • I am not holy enough to be Raptured.
  • Dethklok is actually a decent death metal parody band.
  • I can survive a mild mosh pit.  While the bruises were worth the experience, the near head concussion I received from falling onto a concert floor and hitting my head against it was probably not a good thing to risk.  I think it would be better to keep my slender self far away from the bigger guys slamming themselves into each other.
  • Lawyers rocking on to Danzig are awesome.
Several friends have shared links of steampunk themed-events over the past few weeks, which have been sitting on a bookmark queue.  As I was trying to pick a topic to write about today, it struck me how much respect and notoriety steampunk is receiving compared to several months ago.

Before when I'd run dry on steampunk topics to discuss I'd search those key words into Google News.  Sometimes I'd get a hit for a recent steampunk event or article describing a steampunk fashion item.  Now I find that the spring and summer of 2011 is chock-full of steampunk events, such as:

Not to mention the various sci-fi, anime, and fantasy conventions in which enthusiasts representing the steampunk aesthetic are increasing by the year.

Even in the miniature tabletop wargaming world is dabbling in the imagined mechanics, technology, and adventures of the 19th century.  Origins, a gaming convention in Columbus OH, has recently announced that the theme of their convention this June will be Victoriana!  According to their website:

This theme includes everything loved from the Victorian period: Steampunk, Victorian clothing, Corsets, Jules Verne and so much more.

It's certainly taking the "geeky" conventions by storm at the moment.  With bands such as Sugarland and Panic! at the Disco incorporating steampunk influences in their stage shows, it certainly seems that steampunk is at least a fad.

Being a biased writer and aficionado for neo-Victorian things, however, I doubt this current trend is more than just a mere fad.  I predict more steampunk-inspired mainstream fashions at some point in the future, as well as more steampunk music and steampunk furniture.  Maybe I am just dreaming, but this subculture is growing so much so quickly it's hard not to be excited about the possibilities that it will be available to more than just the DIYers or people who live in cities with a greater variety of musically-varied genres than my current place of residence, Pittsburgh, PA.

All I know is that steampunk is becoming more common, and appears to be blowing "full steam ahead" with nothing blocking its racing path.


  1. Yeah, steampunk is becoming more and more popular. Claire's actually has some items that scream steampunk to me. I'm not sure if most people see it, but whatever.

    I do think that pretty soon steampunk will be made out to be something completely different by the mainstream. Like Goths being mallgoth-y and mopey, or Lolita being sexual.

    And then there will be mass-produced "steampunk" items.

    What? Me? Negative?

    I actually adore steampunk and am happy that it's growing, but the consequences will be annoying.

  2. Ashlee- Haha, I agree with you there. I think steampunk is in great danger of being made stereotypical, but that is one evil of it becoming more popular. Actually right now is probably the most "pure" time for it, if one can actually call it "pure."

    Oh well. Such is the nature of us humans- to marginalize these subcultures through our mainstream interpretations.