Of Course There’s An Online Fandom For Ohio Shooter T.J. Lane

“T.J. Lane is my spirit animal.” NSFWish

1. The “TJ+Lane” tag on tumblr exploded in content Tuesday night into Wednesday morning. Lane was sentenced yesterday to three life sentences for killing three of his classmates in February 2012.

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2. As photos from T.J. Lane’s sentencing hit the web, users quickly started posting them to their blogs.

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3. Users, mostly teenagers it looks like, have been making photosets and collages out of Lane’s Facebook photos, painting him as a tragic figure.

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5. Many of whom are upset that Lane is getting such a severe sentence for killing his fellow students at Chardon High School last year.

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6. They reference him in regards to other notorious mass-shooters, like James Holmes, the way other fandoms describe casts of TV shows or movies.

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7. One of the most common threads through the T.J. Lane fandom, however, is how hot he is.

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10. Tumblr users have been fighting amongst each other about Lane’s hotness, which seems to only ramp up the devotion.

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12. His trial was heavily GIF’d by the community, isolating some of Lane’s more provocative moments.

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14. His statement from the sentencing is everywhere, with kids putting it on other photos of him and sharing it amongst each other.

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17. Also, an unfortunately dramatic photo of Lane revealing his “Killer” shirt is being passed around.

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19. And like with James Holmes, there is fan art. But not a lot of it.

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21. But more than anything, the fandom seems to be centered entirely around his belligerent and disturbing behavior at the sentencing Tuesday.

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Ryan Broderick is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.
Contact Ryan Broderick at

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