It’s one thing to be upset with your critics. That’s as old as Shakespeare. Sometimes they may have a point and still be jerks about it. Sometimes they’re jerks without giving any actual constructive criticism. And in current arguments you have the racists and sexists. My problem starts when you lump all angry criticism from critic and fans alike in with the jerks and racists/sexists, but that’s not necessarily what this installment of Trope Shark is going to be about. I’ll rant about that elsewhere. If you want to go on social media or interviews and complain about that, it’s up to you, but be sure you don’t lump legitimately angry fans in with the jerks. I’ve already discussed how this happens, and I may come back to this one more time before I’m done.
However, I don’t care what happens on social media. While critics and fans should be able to make their case nicely so should the creators. Often they do not. Where this trope comes in, however, is when the creators decide to give the middle finger to their naysayers within their own stories. From TV Tropes:
A specific form of Take That!, in which the producers of a show respond to criticism of the show through the show itself, either through subtle in-jokes that obliquely refer to the criticism, putting lines of dialogue into the mouths of the characters, or presenting parodies of their critics. The program may even break the fourth wall to directly address the critics.
Depending on the producer, this can come in many forms; gentle ribbing or parody of the critics and their position, pointed rejoinders, triumphant gloating, and — in extreme cases — over-the-top bile that leads to the strong assumption that the critics may have struck a delicate nerve (either that, or the producer just plain Can’t Take Criticism).
It’s those last two parts, especially the last one, where the problem starts, because that can just ruin your story for everyone else, even the ones that like you.