Last week, I continued my thoughts on why I think Girl Meets World is one of my favorite shows as of now. At the end, I did talk about one of the more intriguing aspects of the show, the relationships between the characters. Or, more specifically, who will wind up with Lucas. Right now, the two more popular choices are Riley/Lucas AKA “Rucas” vs. Lucas/Maya AKA “Lucaya.” Even the writers/producers of Girl Meets World knows that fans are gushing over these pairing, they worked it into a promo for Girl Meets Texas!
This particular practice of fans pairing fictional characters together is known as “shipping.” And it’s been something fandom has been doing for a long time but they just didn’t know what it was called. Well, I know I’ve been doing it for some time, anyway. I remember first doing this when the Harry Potter films came out. I never read any of the books so I was just awaiting the end of the series so that Harry Potter could marry Hermione.
Then, when The Half-Blood Prince film released, my friend, who has been reading the books, told me that Hermione didn’t wind up with Harry. Instead, the incredibly smart and strong-willed female wizard ended up with the really bland Ron Weasley? I couldn’t believe it! In all fairness, Ron did mature from a very timid kid who couldn’t really do much into a more courageous man… but I still didn’t like it. Unintentionally, I was “shipping” for Team Harmony.
After I knew about the business of “shipping” fictional characters together, I did become aware about the other “ships that have been sailed,” so to speak. There’s, of course, the entire Team Edward vs. Team Jacob in Twilight. There’s also the shipping of the Hunger Games characters. We have the very unimaginative naming of the Katniss Everdeen and Gale Hawthorne, which is Everthorne. We also have the very hilarious ship name for the Peeta and Katniss pairing: Peeniss!
Based on the previous series I mentioned, it may seem like only lovesick teens and tweens have some sort of stake when it comes to shipping two people together. No, the shipping market seems to also involve adolescents as well. Take a look at both Avatar: The Last Airbender and The Legend of Korra. I may have missed the entire Avatar fever when it was red-hot and I only got a glimpse on how good Korra is (actually avoided it since I didn’t get to watch the show’s predecessor in full). But those two Nickelodeon shows had fanbases divided on who would wind up together!
For the most part, both Avatar: The Last Airbender and The Legend of Korra were kids shows, even if they both appealed to a wide audience. There’s a lot of action for sure and there’s also a lot of comedy. But both of these so-called “kid shows” dealt with somewhat adult themes, including love. I still can remember the entire Internet squeeing when it was (heavily implied) that Korrasami was a real thing!
The weird thing is, fans are so invested in these characters, we have made this a really big part of why viewers become so invested in the story. We really want to see two particular people wind up with each other in the end. And I think a lot of writers and television producers are banking on the shipping community to make their products successful. I think this is kind of a bad move. I mean, it’s okay to try to write in a love triangle but they have to make sure that the fans have to love each pairing.
I felt Harry should’ve ended up with Hermione because I thought they would make a cute couple. They had great chemistry in the movies and it was like both of them were drawn together not just because of friendship but something more. But, in the end, I could kind of see why Hermione wound up with Ron (the entire growing mature and responsible argument), so, ultimately, I was okay with the final outcome.
But when I watch a show like the recent Supergirl and I see Kara Danvers have eyes for James Olsen while Kara’s other co-worker, Winn, pines over her, it just seems forced. I think the show’s producers are just writing this supposed love triangle but not giving us a reason to want Kara to pair up with one (James Olsen) and not the other (Winn). A lot of the heat from the shipping community comes naturally and I just don’t see the Supergirl community wanting to argue over who Kara will wind up with!
But the show is still only a few episodes in. Maybe there will be some character developments and maybe I will see the entire love triangle thing become interesting. Maybe I will be invested in shipping either of the guys with The Girl of Steel. Who knows? I just hope they do it and make me want to ship these people together it that’s their goal. But, like I said, it has to come from the fans themselves. They shouldn’t force it.
Anyway, speaking of Supergirl, I have been watching the show for a few weeks now and, while I can see some potential, but I just don’t see it as being as an incredibly good show. I’ll explain my thoughts next time!
Who’s your favorite “shipping” couple? Let me know in the comments section below!