Zine Review: If You Hate Someone… You Hate Someone

If You Hate Someone… You Hate Someone

If You Hate Someone… You Hate Someone is a black and white handwritten zine about language, relationships, and the question: Are hurtful words turning romantic?

I’ve been sitting here for a while now trying to figure out how to get into this review, but my head is still filled with everything I’ve just read. I should learn to simply not have expectations with any zines because this zine certainly went in a different direction than I thought it would. What started out as a rant turned into a real ‘lightbulb’ sort of zine for me, making me think about things in a new light.

Inspired by people ‘shipping’ Resident Evil 7’s “protagonist and the game’s next door asshole”, the zinemaker asks:

“Are we normalising loathing in healthy relationships?”

They start off talking about tired of people deciding that two men who hate each other ‘obviously’ must really be in love with each other. The concern (amongst many) in this is that it’s taking nasty words and phrases thrown at each other as some sort of secret, disgusting love language and how that is playing out in society with hurtful words becoming normalised.

I like the clarification of the difference between liking the ‘enemies to friends to lovers’ trope and the ‘they hate each other so they must love each other’ thing that the zinemaker is talking about. Furthermore, there is the clarification that this isn’t about abusive relationships either – even though, when it comes to this topic, they are muddier waters to navigate.

They go on to point out the societal implications of indulging what some would argue is an ‘innocent fiction’ and how it’s not just simple or fun. How these sorts of things tend to leak into behaviour and normalise it.

Who hasn’t heard ‘if a boy hits a girl, then he really likes her’?

I do have to point out here that the handwriting is a bit hard to read at times. But I found the subject so interesting that it only slowed me down rather than prevented me from continuing.

If You Hate Someone is a zine that I expected to read casually, but it ended up really making me think a lot about things that I’d simply accepted as how things work. Things that I hadn’t taken the time to think critically about. If anything I’ve described here sounds interesting to you, then definitely check out this zine.

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