One of the things I've loved most about my West Wing experience is that, watching it in retrospect on DVD, I've been spared all the hand-wringing of fandom. I'm not criticising anyone, because I've done my fair share of that in the past, but it has been so wonderful to watch this show without knowing who was pissed off with who, or feeling frustrated because TPTB weren't developing this or that character the way I expected.
I'm starting to think that fandom - and by that I mean the obsessive debating/arguing on lists and forums - engenders an unhealthy emotional investment in the creation of the show, rather than fostering a healthy emotional investment in the show as entertainment.
It's entirely subjective, of course, but I loved just chatting about West Wing episodes with a couple of friends instead of getting caught up in the whole fandom thing. And since I can already see a few potential fault lines in the S60 proto-fandom, I'm getting out now.
I really want to enjoy this show, to be inspired to write a little fic, and, of course, to download all coloneljack's wonderful icons. But I'm not going any further!
My fandom days are over, and I feel pretty good about that.