In case you thought we only supported relationships comprised of bad boys and the chicks who love them, we are also completely obsessed with bad boys and the boys who love them. So there. We are very happy to bring you this manlove-ship from one of fiction’s most dangerous love nests. Besides, isn’t the best kind of love born amongst prison rape, shankings, and the death penalty? Nah, probably not, but the princes of OZ’s Emerald City make up this week’s ship anyway.
OZ lasted for six seasons, all of which I watched for the first time this summer and for over almost 60 episodes I watched Tobias Beecher’s and Christopher Keller’s relationship play out more like a cage match than a love affair. In case you’re not overly familiar with the prison-time soap opera, Beecher, a former successful attorney is serving time for hitting and killing a little girl with his car after a booze-filled night. Naturally, life in Emerald City does not treat him kindly and he is beaten, raped, and branded by the local Aryans. The the devolution of Beecher is one of the best parts of the show as we see him become a drug addict, murderer, and occasional penis-chomper (as in chomp-off).
You’d think then that Chris Keller would be the silver lining in all the suck that is Beecher’s life. You’d be wrong. Oh so wrong. Keller is incarcerated for robbing a grocery store and killing the store clerk. Oh, and he’s been married and divorced 4 times. Oh Oh, he’s also suspected in the unsolved tortures and murders of several gay men over the last ten years. But hey, he’s charming. Really charming. Like insane sociopath level of charming. What I’m saying is he looks like this:
Like I said, the relationship is more of a cage match than a love affair we can swoon over, so let’s treat it like one:
Keller doesn’t arrive at OZ until the second season and by then a whole lot of fucked up things have happened to Beecher. Still, Beecher begins to find himself attracted to the bewitching Keller and eventually falls in love with him. Little does he know that that Keller is operating under the influence of Vern Schillinger, a crazy Nazi that, in season one, tatted a swastika on Beecher’s ass and made him his prison bitch. The two had a relationship when Keller was a young felon and apparently Verne protected him. Once Tobias is smitten, Keller reveals his duplicity. He leads Tobias in to a trap and the Aryans beat the ever-loving snot out of him, breaking both his arms and legs.
Decision: 1 point Keller
Turns out, Keller really IS in love with Tobias, but for some reason he thinks Chris is kind of a tool. Beecher rejects his attempts to make amends and instead plots to seem like he is seducing Verne’s son, who is also now incarcerated in OZ. This upsets just about everybody including Keller, though he makes no attempts to shank Beecher (see, I told you it was love). Beecher eventually says that he could forgive Keller if he confesses to being involved in his attack. Keller complies, and Tobias doesn’t forgive him. Troll Level:3000
Decision: 1 point Beecher.
Verne stabs Beecher for…I forget why because it happens a lot. Keller saves his life however and the two manage to forgive each other and Beecher asks that Keller be transferred to his old cell. The pair share a touching moment at the end of season 3 on New Year’s Eve.
Decision: 1 point Love
The happy days are cut short by Verne’s organized kidnapping of Beecher’s children. Somehow Keller is implicated in the and Beecher naturally spurns him and attempts to murder him. The two then spend the majority of the season prison-pranking each other, which is just another way of saying Beecher becomes a giant slut and Keller secretly kills all of his lovers. In retaliation for the retaliation of his retaliations, Beecher agrees to give evidence to the FBI that would implicate Keller in the murders of all those nice young gay men I mentioned earlier.
Decision: I don’t even know.
After Verne’s other son is murdered (who actually did kidnap Beecher’s children), Tobias is implicated(he did it). Keller, believing his life was basically a waste anyway, confessed to the murder for Beecher and is sent to Massachusetts state penitentiary to await trial.
Decision: 1 point Love
Beecher is paroled and Keller is sentenced to death. Beecher now devotes much of his time to working to overturn Keller’s sentence and it is appealed! Their relationship is still strained, however, but Keller tries to do nice things for Beecher like murdering the man who murdered his father (don’t ask). Or how about asking Beecher to deliver a package full of drugs to his ill ex-wife and then calls in an anonymous tip to the police and gets Beecher’s parole reversed so they can be together in OZ forever.
Decision: 1 point Love?
Round 7 (final round)
This one’s a doozie. Tobias, who’s long path to freedom throughout the show is a wash, decides he just doesn’t want a toxic person like Keller in his life. Keller is sad and during the prison production of Macbeth, plots with Verne (who I believe played the titular role while Beecher played Macduff) to get a real knife on set so he may kill Beecher (and this ladies and germs, is why this was the show’s final season). However, in the last moment Keller gives Beecher the real knife and he stabs and finally kills Verne. Unfortunately, Beecher is not won over by this final display of what I suppose was supposed to pass as affection and rejects Keller for the final time. Having nothing left to live for (and to be the troll of all trolls) Keller jumps from Beecher and over this inexplicable balcony thing in the cell block shouting : “Beecher, Don’t!” and falls to his death. The series ends with Beecher being charged with Keller’s death, though his conviction is left unknown.
Decision: 1 point the prop-knife in through my heart.
Who wins this ship? You do! This show was a good-ass time and this fucked up roller coaster of a relationship was the main reason. If you have HBO GO (or any means to watch this on these here internets). And hey, if you get arrested for downloading it illegally, maybe you’ll go to prison and be someone’s Beecher or Keller. Isn’t that a nice thought?
As always, check below for ship swag
Binding Love with Handcuff Necklace with Heart Key can be found here for $16.00
Never drop the soap with Goats Milk Soap on a Rope (Apricot) can be found here for $6.00
Folsom State Prison Shirt can be found here for $14.99
Beecher’s Whiskers by Freakydisaster18 -Beecher seems to have forgotten what a razor is and it’s driving Keller insane.
Desperation by Jomel10-A missing scene set during season 4. Beecher is trying to get his head together. Keller isn’t helping. *Slash.* Warnings: Graphic Sex, some violence.