With some of the country’s Meccas of higher education offering courses in fantastical geeky disciplines like Elvish, Skryim, and Zombie media, it’s no surprise that fanfiction has become an interest to the tweeds in academia. Annie Jamison, a professor at the University of Utah with a PhD from Princeton, has recently published a fic: Why Fanfiction is Taking Over the World, which explores the role and importance of fanfiction in modern literature and culture.
My name is Ashly and I have shipped non-canon pairings.
I’ve probably been doing it since before you were in fandom. I know I’ve been doing it since before talking about fandom was a thing you did without the safety of hiding behind a fake username. I’ve discussed “wouldn’t it be great/hot if…” scenarios and, yeah, let’s just go all out here, I’ve written fanfic involving couples who were never, ever, ever getting together. Ever.
I am here to prove to you that I have survived. And that, somehow, you will as well.
Shipping non-canon couples is fine. I wanna make sure you know that. If you wanted to see Kirk and Spock all over each other, that’s your call and I’m not gonna judge you. Though, to be fair, I did at one point pretty heavily judge anyone in the Final Fantasy X fandom who shipped Auron/Rikku because he is a) too old for her and b) DEAD, OKAY? SPOILER ALERT.
It’s not like something not actually coming true in the source media somehow invalidates what you’d like to see. When a creator puts something out there, they are at the whims of their audience, and a large portion of the fun of fanworks is exploring “what if” scenarios, so if you wondered what it would be like if Barbara Gordon and Dinah Lance were more than just friends, then FANWORKS ARE YOUR FRIEND. And there is likely someone out there who has had the same thought and will want to talk about it with you and compare notes and it can be so. damn. much. fun.
But for some reason that I will never quite understand, some people seem to feel that if their pairing isn’t approved in the source material, you have somehow managed to time travel into the future and take a huge shit on their grave.
The most infamous incident I can think of was while the Harry Potter series was still being released. Notably, it was when Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince came out.
So much happens in Half-Blood Prince. There was a lot to get emotional over and things that were sure to cause a ton of fan outrage. And do you know what I saw the most outrageous anger over?
Dumbledor’s death? Psh, no, old dude gets killed whatever.
Snape turning traitor? WHO CARES?
No. No, the most terrible thing JK Rowling did in Half-Blood Prince, according to a very vocal section of the internet, was this:
THAT’S RIGHT. HARRY/GINNY. ROWLING, YOU UTTER BITCH.
See, there was this expectation that Harry was going to end up with HERMIONE and Ginny…let’s just not go there regarding their opinions of Ginny.
So, why do I bring this up now? Because, I have to confess, I’ve been sucked into the whirlpool that is Teen Wolf. Why, you ask? Well…
…for the plot. Totally for the plot.
Anyway, the most popular pairing in Teen Wolf is that of Stiles Stilinski (human best friend of the lead character) and Derek Hale (mysterious failure of a werewolf). The pairing is commonly known as “Sterek.” For the record, in a world where Final Fantasy 8 fandom gave us the namesmush “Squinoa,” I cannot laugh at “Sterek” as much as I want to.
Anyway, as for the pairing, I don’t get it, but I’ve gotta give them this: it is very pretty.
Please remember, I told you: I watch it for the plot.
Anyway, recently there was word that, sadly, Sterek will NOT become canon on the show. And from the internet there was a moment of silence.
And then? FIRE.
Okay, okay, exaggerating, but seriously. I can see why there was a certain amount of hope that it COULD happen: Teen Wolf has been pretty cool about normalizing homosexuality on the show, in fact we’ve been promised that the openly gay character of Danny will be getting a werewolf boyfriend and some on-screen loving in Season 3. Besides that, the show has done things such as holding a slash-friendly fanfiction contest where the winner got to meet members of the cast and the creator and, well, stuff like this.
FOR. THE. PLOT.
WHAT WAS I TALKING ABOUT?
Right, anyway. Sterek no happen.
Disappointment I can get. Especially in a case where you saw hope for it.
But the battle cry of STEREK EXISTS? Oh, folks.
Look, yes. Sterek exists and can continue to exist in fanart and fanfic and whatever else you wanna make. Obviously the cast and creator are COOL with it, in fact cast members may ship it (or they may be trolling, I don’t know, either way it is awesome). But it’s just NOT the direction the show is going.
That doesn’t mean you can’t still ship Sterek. You are TOTALLY allowed to. I’m sure most of the fandom would prefer you did (though there may be some people who would like to see a little more Stiles/Scott/Allison stuff. I mean, I assume so). But really, let’s all remember that it’s all in good fun, that life goes on, and we should pay attention to the important things.
Like the plot.
THE PLOT, DAMMIT.
- Ashly was a Sub Cultured contributing writer and, apparently, a creeper who is hoping you don’t kill her for saying any of this. She is glad to discuss the plot of Teen Wolf on her Twitter @newageamazon.
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.
Many superheroes have been around for decades upon decades, so it’s no surprise that some have racked up quite an impressive hook-up list. While some couples have failed to stand the test of time (or some Crisis or another), we can still root for our favorite pairings all we want. After all, it’s comics; no one stays dead forever. Which leads me to this week’s ship: B-man and Kitty Cat. Selina and Bruce. Catwoman and Batman.
The current incarnation of the duo meets up to bang on the occasional rooftop (with the costumes on;), but the Bat/Cat ship has been going strong for almost as long as the big man has worn the cowl and cape. While Bruce’s origins have stayed relatively stable throughout the years (rich, dead parents, an Alfred, etc), Selina’s past has been altered so many times that it’s no wonder she’s not running around Gotham as Pandawoman or something. However, whether former prostitute, flight attendant, or street urchin, Catwoman has always maintained everything from a purrrfectly flirtatious and antagonistic relationship with Bruce to becoming his confidant, ally, and friend. Lets not forget that Selina is often keeper of Batman’s most guarded secret: his identity. It’s love, folks.
Costumes changed, Gotham changed, but the fact remains that there will always be a third party to the Cat/Bat ship: He is the Dark Knight of Gotham, its guardian and best detective, and she is a thief and a whip-wielding rogue. Perhaps this little problem can best be seen during the Hush storyline when, just as those crazy masks seem to work their shit out, the Bruce’s distrust of Selina ultimately ends the affair.
Even when Catwoman is at her least villainous, splitting her time between stealing only the most necessary feline related artifacts and working as the vigilante of the East End, they just can’t seem to make it work. The fact is, Bruce doesn’t belong to himself so long as Batman belongs to Gotham. The tragedy of their relationship is that Selina would have to give up Catwoman to be with Bruce, but Bruce can never give up being Batman. Since she’s a sassy kitty, I’m sure Selina could handle no part of that unbalanced relationship and would bristle at the very thought.
But no worries, some of the best Bruce/Selina moments have occurred amidst all this angst and during periods of not hooking up. A personal favorite occurs in Catwoman volume 3 when Batman brings baby Helena(poor little Helena, I can never remember if you still exist at any given moment) a big stuffed teddy bear. Not only was this very sweet, but we got to see big bad Batman holding a toy bear. I died from the cuteness.
The point is, no matter what the current status of their relationship is (like when Bruce occasionally impregnates the daughter of his greatest enemy), something’s going on between these two and we love to see it. Here’s to hoping Nolan’s version (and more nail-chewing worthy Hathaway’s Catwoman ) gives us a good Cat/Bat depiction that pays tribute to their long history with each other.
Finally I picked a ship that wasn’t a COMPLETE pain in the ass to find swag and other goodness. enjoy!
Btas Neckclass can be found here for $10.00
Batman and Catwoman Cake Toppers can be found here for $65.00
Catwoman wedding garter can be found here for $15.00
Ginormous Poster Print can be found here for$ 18.45
Catwoman and Batman Tote can be found here for $30.00
Cat-Tales by Chris Dee the best catwoman fiction….yes.
The Bleak of Winter by Linkz1 “It’s only been a few months since Jason Todd’s death, and Bruce is incredibly shaken. He questions his own worth and what it means for him to be Batman”
Gucci and Versace by DC Luder (author has written LOTS of really well reviewed Cat and Bat stories!)”Bruce and Selina face each other for the first time since they went their separate ways after the events in Hush.”
Closure by Whitewolf (short and sweet and sad) “Catwoman says goodbye.”
Partners in Crime by Lydia Hunter “A romance novel from the original B:TAS. Bruce and Selina try to form a relationship without the masks”
Let’s cut the bullshit, you guys.
I know we’ve touched on fanfiction and porn here before, but we’ve ignored the elephant in the room for long enough! You know what I’m talking about, that luscious secret same sex pairing you love to read about in the darkest time of night. Those two ladies who just can’t seem to get enough of each other. Those episodes of Torchwood where the pansexual immortal oozes sex appeal and you just know he’s ohsoclose to making your dreams come true. No? How about timeless 80’s couple Clair and Bender from the Breakfast Club? Ever wonder what happened with them the Monday after their Saturday in the supply closet? Sex is nothing scary or taboo and reading, watching, learning about such is nothing to be ashamed of. Instead, I want to let you know you’re not alone. There are thousands upon thousands of us geeky gals and gents who enjoy a good dose of sexual content. Not convinced? Let’s dive into the mass pool of evidence just waiting to be fondled in exploration of what is such a mainstay in media today. (more…)
So there are certain behaviors that will solidify you as a geek without any chance of deniability. Cosplay in any sort of non-Halloween or non-spice-up-the-sex-life situation, for one. Or how about proclaiming, “There can be only one!” each and every time you’re faced with a multiple-choice question? I, and many others, flaunt our geek-flag in the form of fanfiction—quite possibly the geekiest geek pastime out there.
Quick definition: fanfiction is…well, fiction… written by fans…of a particular fandom. I really did try to come up with a more English-teacher appropriate definition, yet the only other way I can describe it is, if you ever had a hankering to have seen Indiana Jones have his way with He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named, I have your outlet (this really exists by the way and will be linked below). (more…)