Sunday, December 3, 2023

I’ll go down with this ship…

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As a fan of any TV series, book, movie or even musical you’re probably shipping a specific pair of characters. Even if your not a fan you can still ship couples or characters, some of us ship real couples too. This article is the introduction for my new series which will focus on analyzing different ships. But before that, some basic information on what ships are, in case you’re new to the whole shipping phenomenon.

What’s a ship?

Let me start at the beginning. ‘Ship’ is a short term for relationship, often used in fandom. It’s every kind of relationship that the audience can root for. One has to admit that some ships are more popular than others. Almost every ship has a name which consists mostly of some kind of mix between the character names of a particular couple. A portmanteau, of sorts, like “Brangelina” but with fictional character names.

Most ships consist of a couple although you can find ships that have more than two characters and ships that are not romantic or sexual. Ships don’t exclude any type of relationship, regardless of gender. Some of the most iconic and my favorite ships are gay or lesbian, for example.

The difference between a ship and an OTP

Whilst talking about ships one will also definitely hear the term “OTP,” which is short for One True Pairing. People can enjoy a lot of different ships, but many will root for and enjoy their OTP the most. It’s the one pairing that they just have to see end up together or get an happy ending. Not getting what they want can turn a fan off from a show. That being said, as in everything, your preferences for ships and OTP’s can change. I speak from experience (but that’s a story for my next article).

Many different types

There are as many ships as you can think of and then some. The beautiful thing about shipping is that even if the series or book doesn’t give you the pairing you enjoy, the fandom most definitely will. There are lots of kinds of ships, too, not only because of the viewers personal preferences but also because of the many types of relationships. Here are some of the most popular broad types of ships:

OTP – focuses on a romantic pairing your most invested in

BroTP – is a ship which focuses mainly on friendship and familial feelings

Canon – ships that are created trough the course of a show or book

Non Canon – ships that were created solely by fans

These are the ships that I’ve encountered the most. This series will focus mostly on my personal favorite OTP’s and BroTP’s.

Toxic fandom

Shipping and fandoms are generally fun places where you can discuss your favorite scenes, characters, etc. You can meet great people and get creative. Sadly, there can also be a lot of toxicity within fandoms and between different fandoms. One of our other articles describes some of the reasons why we get so picky and why we can’t simply accept other views.

The shipping world is probably the place that causes the most conflicts, especially if you don’t see any disadvantages in the pairing or the characters that you prefer. This often causes irrational conflicts between shippers called “ship wars” and they can be downright nasty.

This series, however, doesn’t strive to start any wars. It’s simply an analysis of some of my favorite ships. That being said, my articles will also show the drawbacks and flaws in these same relationships.

I hope you’ll enjoy this new series and the views I’ll present in my articles or that they’ll at least spark a discussion.

See you next month for the first part!

Image Courtesy of Cartoon Network


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