If it was one or the other, I'd say original. My take on fan work? It's more for the author's themselves than whoever reads them. Please understand, I'm not insulting fan work with this statement; as a matter of fact, it applies to me. I am currently the author of a Kirby-based comic, but I hardly ever read any other Kirby comics (I think, like, 3 out of 40 or so of my favs are Kirby based). I think people should try to be as original as possible, but it's fun to express your love of something else once in a while.
Personally, even if I like something, I won't necessarily read fan work based on it. It would have to be something I love so much, just seeing the characters is enough to make me extremely happy. All in all, I believe there's a time and place for fan work (because when you think about it, even a hollywood movie based on something could be considered "fan fiction"), but ultimately, I prefer original works. It means there's a higher chance the author thought harder about it, and therefore, put more effort into making it good.
Seven Rain wrote:There are the occasional fanworks I enjoy. SMBZ is one of my favorites, mainly because of the action but also because Alvin manages to make all the characters act so believably. He's great at keeping everyone in-character.
This is an exception to everything I just said. I like SMBZ better than most movies. It's awwwwwesooooome!