If you google the keyword "Imam Mahdi", you will bump into countless versions popping out. Reading most of the articles, comments, forums, watching youtube, facebook profiles/notes etc - only a handful of such materials are very scholastic and able to debate/elaborate on the issue clearly.
The most typical and 'hillarious' facts are : Imam Mahdi is emerging "this and that year" - (since the late 90s - I've been monitoring that many of these bloggers are the same persons and always 'quietly 'moving the schedule' one or two years ahead of the 'original schedule of the supposed to be "the emergence year" - that they have "predicted")
Surprisingly, most of these impostors; initially; did not mean to proclaim or giving hints leading to the people calling them "The Imam Mahdi". But as the numbers of followers grow, somehow, it gave the 'impostors' some "feeling of superiority and security" (I called it "Narcissistic Personality Disorder" (NPD).
They will start to "connect themselves to some Quranic verses and the Hadiths that are related to the emergence of the Mahdi", speaking of "the 'coincidental' signs in the surroundings and make-believe that only "they can save this world". To worsen things, they will grant any of the followers 'special privileges' including themselves to "drop the practice of Syaria". Ultimately, leading to the births of Cults Movement or Deviationist Teachings!
The 'followers' somehow will 'close their minds' and blindly listen and follow (even swearing allegiance to) 'these lunatics' merely after briefly witnessing :
a) some 'magic tricks' or 'hypnotic spells' or
b) 'fascinated by some Quranic and Hadiths being mentioned'
c) what is merely a great brainwashing technique,
ultimately to complete the circle, the followers will end up being members of a cult. (too late to turn back)
The rest is history : Followers giving away 'alms' under the pretext of some 'jihad contributions' to support the move till they themselves become poor and jobless "in the name of Allah" (so sad seeing their wives, children and family who followed them blindly - may Allah SWT pardon them and show them the right path)
Believe me, the ending of most fanatic cults are never without "bloodshed"!
Now I am neither going to write about the great Imam Mahdi nor reject him.
That being said; so far; I'm sticking to becoming a 'normal Muslim' (nothing superior) and not be easily influenced by 'literal interpretation' of some 'so-called Islamic' societies, religious groups, fortune tellers or non-governmental organizations with "black flags" or "blue turbans".
I maybe wrong but I sincerely do not believe that the Imam Mahdi is racial, fight only for a single gender (man's club only), madly murdering peaceful non-Muslims, launching anti-Semitic campaigns against the Jews or he is the head of terrorism.
But I have a humble hunch, he is in fact a gifted and selected by Allah SWT to "make things right" (Yes, it is not like it's going to be 'a perfect world' but good will prevail upon evil)
Remember, since he is the progeny of Prophet Muhammad pbuh, Imam Mahdi will be likely boycotted and rejected; the chances are; by the majority misunderstood 'pious Muslims' themselves but Allah SWT will help and guide him through. A fearless man and the greatest diplomatic leader ever born as well.
Wassalaamu'alai kum wbr.