Saturday, March 17, 2012

McCurdy Fever

McCurdy Fever
D.C. Miles

Long, long, ago…in a studio ‘not that far away,’ a funny blonde with a biting wit and mismatched socks brought to life a bacon-loving, insult-hurling alter ego.

Five years, 100 episodes, and over a million followers later…a new breed of fan was born.

They come from every corner of the world and every walk of life. They are every age, every race, and every gender. Individually you might not notice them; they are the girls and boys next door, the men and women you pass without notice. But collectively they are loud, passionate, and impossible to ignore.  Their numbers are in the millions and their razor sharp focus is centered on one person – The Nerd Queen, iCarly star Jennette McCurdy.

To call them fans would be an understatement. They don’t just watch her show – they can recite whole episodes. They don’t just buy her albums – they listen to them, promote them, belt out the lyrics and encourage everyone they know to do the same. They don’t just follow her career – they support it with seemingly never ending energy. They are not spectators; they are an active community, with an online presence nearly two million strong, and they’ve made it their business to make Jennette Michelle Faye McCurdy a household name. It’s a mouthful, we know…but if you like, you can call her Jennette.

Impressed? You should be. Wondering who they are? Well, let me introduce them. They’re not just fans – they’re superfans…but they call themselves McCurdians. And if they have their way, by the end of this article you’ll be counting yourself among their number.

In 2007, iCarly hit the Nickelodeon airwaves and viewers were treated to their first glimpse of McCurdy’s character – Sam Puckett. With an inordinate love of food, a chip the size of Texas on her shoulder and a back story that made you alternately laugh and cry, Sam Puckett was not the cookie cutter sitcom heroine.  But week after week Jennette McCurdy’s pitch perfect comedic timing and sizable acting chops drew viewers in, first to see what she’d do next but later, because she’d done the impossible – made the world fall in love with a blonde headed demon and the actress who brought her to life.

Now in its fifth season, iCarly is still going strong and the show’s success is due in some part to the millions of McCurdians who continue to find new ways to support it and the actress at the helm of their tribe.

Recently we were able to catch up and chat with Brian Kimskey, owner and creator of and, arguably one of the loudest voices at the front of the McCurdy pack.

YWW: Some would call you the official unofficial president of the McCurdy fanclub--how do you feel about that?
Brian Kimskey: I am a fan like everyone else. Every fan of Jennette wants to help her proactively.  Unfortunately many of them cannot because they do not have access to resources.  I am blessed to have the resources to be able to do that.  I’m no better fan than the next McCurdian; I never considered myself a head. But it is amazing and humbling to be in the center of all the activities that go on.

YWW: How did you come to be a part of the Jennette McCurdy fanbase? Were you a fan of the show first or Jennette first?
Brian Kimskey: I became a fan of Jennette through iCarly.  It was the food fight episode [iCook] and I remember thinking to myself, “boy, that blonde girl’s got some talent.” Like most people in this fanbase, you begin to research her a bit and realize her off-screen personality is inspiring.  People like Jennette are rare in the entertainment industry.

YWW: They call you McCurdians. How did that come about? Was it self-titled?
Brian Kimskey: When I jumped on the Jennette Fan Band Wagon, there were many different names like Jennetters.  I started the website with that name because I thought it sounded nice and it was obviously Jennette McCurdy.  Never did I realize that this term would soon be used in blogs and magazines. It has become the official title for Jennette Fans now.  

YWW: What does it mean to be a McCurdian?
Brian Kimskey: McCurdians is made up of people of all sorts.  We are doctors, lawyers, actors, singers, business owners, college students, as well as children and their parents.  We are of all kinds of race and religion from all over the world whether they be big or small, boy or girl... you name it.  We are simply united by our common love for Jennette McCurdy.  It is true that the title McCurdians has been dubbed to be more than just average Jennette Fans.  McCurdians act more like a family and a team rather than an individual fan-ship.  All this has been inspired by Jennette.  Full definition is on

YWW: How many McCurdians would you say there are out there?
Brian Kimskey: In the MILLIONS. There’s simply no way to count.  There are so many unaccounted McCurdians in the world who are inspired by Jennette but are not on the web.

YWW: Jennette is an actress and musical artist...which do you prefer?
Brian Kimskey: Oh, Good question. We love her as both but I believe most of us prefer Jennette McCurdy as an actress that we all first fell in love with.  Music is amazing because it allows us to see her in concert and to listen to her on a daily basis.  We want her to continue to do both!

YWW: Why Jennette? What is it about her that has created such a large and vocal fanbase?
Brian Kimskey: Very rarely do you come across someone like Jennette.  She has forged the path to her career with hard work and no money.  Even when she succeeded she remains untainted by fame that plagues many child stars in this business. She remains humble, compassionate, giving, and sincere which are all rare qualities in a celebrity these days.

I think that everyone has a strong genuine love for Jennette unlike most celebrities because people have been wanting something REAL.  And that is what Jennette brings: herself.  There is no fake generosity or publicity charity or spin-up news about her family.  She’s even proud of her flaws and does not hide them. She’s a hero that triumphs over fakes and busts a lot of myths.

YWW: The McCurdians have accomplished a lot and been very involved in promoting her work. What accomplishment are you most proud of?
Brian Kimskey: There are so many achievements McCurdians should be proud of like breaking BOP’s record.  Jennette McCurdy had the record breaking number of votes EVER on BOP Magazine as the “Favorite TV Actress 2011.”  She is still the record holder today.

But to me, the proudest achievement is the community that McCurdians have created that is high in integrity.  It’s one thing to win a poll or an award, but it’s another thing to save a life.  Even now, many people all over the world are being bullied but come home to find refuge in the McCurdian family. I don’t believe any other fanbase has anything like this.  McCurdian FAMILY that has been created with the inspiration of Jennette is astounding. I am very proud of them for that.

YWW:  In every fanbase there are good things, and not so good things. What is the best part of the fanbase for you? The worst?
Brian Kimskey: There are many to list but I’d say the best thing about this fan-base is the team/family mentality.  Usually a fanbase is about a fan that expresses their love for a celebrity and they compete against other fans to be a “bigger fan.”  McCurdians are different.  We know we’re all on the same team and despite our differences, we stick up for each other and we stand up for Jennette McCurdy.

Like all fanbases, the worst thing is that there are fakes out there trying to label themselves McCurdians.  They engage war against others and bring lots of negativity into the mix.  Some are predators that just want to exploit Jennette Fans because they know a lot of her fans are underage.  Whatever the case, we have our fair share of certain people we have to deal with.

YWW:  There has been some discussion about Ms. McCurdy's fans and, more specifically, fans of the Seddie romantic pairing she’s a part of on the show, and their involvement in cyber bullying...what is your take on that? Was it blown out of proportion or just the work of some fans on the fringe?
Brian Kimskey: Like all fanbase, we are made up of ALL kinds of people and some of them are not so nice. And McCurdians are people like everyone else and we all make mistakes.  Nobody is perfect. But Jennette has always spoken about how much she despises bullying and trolling. McCurdians take the same stance. Though, I do encourage people to investigate the full story.  Just because someone claims to be bullied doesn’t make them the victim.  I had a case where one guy was prowling for inappropriate material and when confronted by McCurdians, he claimed to be bullied and started tweeting everyone.  I also believed the meaning of “bullying” is wrong on the internet.  Bullying doesn’t merely mean “not being nice.”

YWW: Speaking of Seddie, most people can't discuss Jennette without expressing an opinion on the Seddie/ Creddie fan war. Is there an official McCurdian stance on the issue?
Brian Kimskey: O dear... I wouldn’t say an official stance but 90% are Seddie. Vast majority are Seddie. But there are others like me who ship something else.  Like Spam, Sibby, Meddie, or Creddie.

YWW:  Can anyone be a McCurdian? How do you address the claims of some that there is a 'clique' present in the fan base?
Brian Kimskey: It is human nature to want to belong to a group.  This is not a bad thing, on the contrary, it is healthy.  Such as our Brazilian McCurdians like to talk to people that speak their language and understand their culture.  Like-minded people simply like to be with other like-minded people. The disadvantage, of course, is the possibility of an “outcast group.”  I assure you though, no McCurdian group would ever ignore another McCurdian.  The groups interact with each other on a regular basis and break off individually to interact with others.  Her 1 million twitter fans can’t possibly talk to each other all at once. 

YWW: When do you feel the line between healthy appreciation of a celebrity and their work and obsession is crossed?
Brian Kimskey: When Jennette is no longer is a role model but a real idol (not the urban meaning).  There’s a fine line between adoring and worshipping.  Though many McCurdians SAY they worship her, we don’t mean that in a literal sense of praying to her, etc.  Being a fan of Jennette and being inspired by her should help motivate you in your daily lives and not affect it in a negative way.  I believe the healthy appreciation is crossed if your adoration for Jennette makes your life less “healthy.”  Jennette herself would not condone anyone destroying their lives to be a fan. 

YWW: Tell us a little about your website. What other websites do you recommend for people who want to learn more about Jennette.
Brian Kimskey: was started because I saw the need for three things.  1) Bring the fans together. 2) Provide the fans the support they need to support Jennette.  3) Provide a back-end support for Jennette McCurdy. To this day, holds that value. For example, we have no self-hosted photo gallery, newsfeeds, or video galleries, etc.  It has links to other fan channels and fansites who provide a wealth of Jennette materials. This is so we can support those fans and the sites. was created to be the central place where all the fans can interact and support Jennette.

There are plenty of other sites I want to recommend but obviously I can’t list them all here.  The growing list is available on

YWW: What's on the horizon for the McCurdians? What's coming up for Jennette and how do you plan to promote/be a part of that.
Brian Kimskey: This is a big year for Jennette! There are many projects in the works and I believe more fans will come together to support her. I believe McCurdians will continue to redefine what a fan-base is and what a fan-base can do. McCurdians will continue to do things that will astonish other fanbases. For example, like the billboard project where we put up real billboards across Los Angeles to announce Jennette’s album release.  We are nearly half-funded now.

YWW:  If you had to choose 3 words to describe Jennette what would they be?
Brian Kimskey: Compassion, Sincerity, Hard Working.

YWW: If you had to choose 3 words to describe the McCurdians what would they be?
Brian Kimskey: Taken from Jennette’s own words: Loyalty, hospitality, fierceness. 

Fierce… I think I’d have to agree. It’s fitting for the McCurdians…and their queen.

For more information on Jennette McCurdy, visit:



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