My Mad Fat Zine is a black and white half-fold love ode to the UK television show ‘My Mad Fat Diary’.
Seleena and Holly have very possibly made the longest, most well thought out fanzine I have ever read. From episode synopses to set designs and musings on ‘where are they now’, this zine really gives you everything you could want to know about this show.
With so many topics in the show like mental health, fat girl sex, family, friendship, 90s nostalgia and more, they certainly had a lot to write about. But they always kept it within the context of the show and how they felt about the topics’ representation within it. I enjoyed reading about how they deconstructed what could have been otherwise dismissed.
With synopses and character arcs discussed, I wondered if that level of detail might spoil the show for me, but I actually feel like I could watch it in a more thoughtful way now. Even knowing where a lot of things are going, there’s still a lot to be discovered and enjoyed.
I appreciated that Seleena and Holly also included their criticisms of the show. This isn’t blind adoration here. They comment on some rather significant plot holes and even write about imagined episodes in ‘the lost year’ between seasons two and three.
Along that same line, I liked reading about how both Seleena and Holly dismissed the show before falling in love with it. Something about that little detail made me laugh and made their fan-feels a bit more authentic to me.
My Mad Fat Zine references a lot of things I’m not familiar with and is about a show I’ve never seen. But I think a mark of a great fanzine is winning over people like me, and this zine has definitely done that.