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Flurblewaffle
On Shipping 
12th-Feb-2010 02:30 pm
There's a very interesting post here about the lenses that we view shows through, particularly in pairing terms. As a multishipper I come in at the opposite end of the spectrum to gabrielleabelle, but the concept still explains me very well.

I adore many, many different pairings, both to read and write -- and the rarer, the more unconventional or uncanonical, the better. In Prison Break, Michael/Alex is the pairing of my heart, but I would read Alex/Lincoln, Michael/Gretchen or Alex/Lincoln/Sara in a heartbeat. (Seriously, Alex/Linc/Sara? I would be ALL OVER THAT).

I think this comes from my default lens, which is 'It's perfectly possible that X is attracted to Y' where X is absolutely anyone and Y is absolutely anyone else. (As I commented, my lens is clearly like that of a fly, with multiple little windows for each and every combination *g*)

I am completely prepared to believe, without needing any textual support whatsoever, that any given characters will fancy the arse off each other -- regardless of gender, race, age, species, position, usual orientation, past history, relationship, whatever. It doesn't matter whether they're on different sides, whether they canonically hate each other, whether they're related, in love with other people or whether they've never even met, this lens lets me see an attraction between them.

It's why slash is so natural -- why I immediately ship Alicia/Kalinda despite Alicia being absolutely *defined* as The Good Wife, why my first thought on the latest Survivors is 'ooh, of course, Tom/Greg'. It's why actual sibcest (Sam/Dean, River/Simon) or faux-cest (Buffy/Giles, John Connor/Cameron) doesn't squick me, why I like Willow/Giles at both ends of the power imbalance dynamic: S1 Willow as barely-legal naive schoolgirl and futurefic Willow as all-powerful witch-goddess.

Ray Carling hates Sam Tyler, Mulder hates Krycek, the Master hates the Doctor -- I'm still quite happy with the idea that they can also, at some level, *want* them. Rhys absolutely and thoroughly loves Gwen, but that doesn't mean he can't also want Jack. Buffy never met Gunn, but that doesn't mean she wouldn't want him if she did.

What I really enjoy about unconventional pairings is the context. Suspension of disbelief is pre-programmed, so I approach it from the point of 'okay, obviously they would fancy each other -- now, what would make them act on it?' This is, I think, why I love first times and Aliens Made Them Do It, but not established relationship stories or pure PWP -- because in those, the 'how/why/when it happened' is irrelevant, and that's my favourite bit.

There are pairings that don't really move me, but I don't think there are many that I couldn't, in some way, shape or form, manage to *see.* I guess I'm just easy that way :-)
donna by lindenharp
Comments 
12th-Feb-2010 04:15 pm (UTC)
The vast majority of the time I don't ship anyone at all, so while I'm perfectly willing to accept that in theory any X could be attracted to any Y, in practice, I want the writer to show me the money, whether it's in the original text or in fanfic. If someone wants to write Angelus/Snyder, fine and dandy, but unless they show me how the naughty vampire and the strict principal hit it off and what makes them work, I'm probably not going to buy it.

And I think that's in large part because the thing that interests me about relationships is how the people involved interact and fit together on a day to day basis (or don't.) "They're pretty" or "They're hot" aren't sufficient conditions for me to ship something.
12th-Feb-2010 05:09 pm (UTC)
Hee! I have actually written Angel/Snyder, which was certainly one of the more challenging pairings. I went with fever-induced hallucination :-)

I *can* be shallow enough to enjoy 'they're hot, what else do you need?' as a premise, but I will always prefer fics that give me background circumstances as well as pairing action. My main interest tends to be the ways in which people get together - what made it happen? What influenced or drove it, what obstacles and difficulties had to be resolved, how did they discover, or stop resisting, their attraction? How do other people react?

This is a large part of why I have trouble with longfic. I'm the opposite of you -- it's once they've got together that I start to lose interest. I find I'd rather write another one-shot getting them together in a different way (or write a different pairing altogether) than develop the relationship I've set up.

I think I'm just a relationship butterfly! (that's my story, anyway -- it's a more flattering metaphor than the one about the goldfish *g* )

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