TV And Film's Most Stomach-Churning Fan Communities
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TV And Film's Most Stomach-Churning Fan Communities

By Joanna Robinson | Seriously Random Lists | May 29, 2013 | Comments ()


As someone who watches and reads an inordinate amount of fiction I'm no stranger to the concept of "shipping." The idea of "shipping," of course, is that those of us who are fans of a show, a film franchise or a book series get it into our fevered little brains that two characters should be together. Whether this idea is planted there by the writers or born completely out of our own idle speculation, the will they/won't they juice of a story alone is enough to keep most of us hooked. And I get it, I do. It used to be a lot worse when I was a teenage "Buffy The Vampire Slayer" fan, but I certainly still get where shippers are coming from. . .
Screen Shot 2013-05-29 at 11.38.21 AM.png

...most of them. Some fan communities, however, are ill. NO JUDGMENT. But, yes, a little judgment. I learned long ago that there are more things on heaven and earth and in your internet search history than are dreamt of in my philosophy. But these? Burn these with fire. Immediately.

Doctard - "Doctor Who": No, no, this isn't some cute fan community based around that one episode where the TARDIS comes to life in the shape of a kooky, comely lady. This is a fan community dedicated to the Doctor and his, er, box. Which is bigger on the in-WELL YOU KNOW HOW IT GOES. I suppose this taps into a very basic "lads and their cars" ideology but, um, WHERE would he? And HOW would she? And...just belch.

Dandrea - "The Walking Dead": I reject any and all ships involving Andrea. Unless, of course, it's Andrea's Head/The Governor's Aquarium.

SanSan- "Game Of Thrones": This particular issue cropped up long before the TV show. Book readers love the idea of The Hound (Sandor) and The Little Bird (Sansa). I don't understand it and I refuse to respond to it and liken it to my thing for Jorah and Dany at your peril.

BROTP - "How I Met Your Mother" Of course there's nothing wrong with shipping Barney and Robin. The show encourages it. Usually. But I brought this particular fan community up to explore the idea of OTP which they've so cleverly incorporated into their Robin and Barney portman-bro. "OTP" stands for "one true pairing" and it's the kind of phrasing that's impossible to utter without a maniacal gleam of zealotry in your eyes. So dial it back, folks. You too, Court.

Stark Spangled Banner - The Avengers: Apparently there are shippers for every single combination of Avengers under the sun. (Tony Stark and Pepper Potts have earned the disgusting nickname "Pepperony.") This particular combination involves Tony Stark, Captain America and The Hulk. You should know it's not the gayness of the combo that troubles me, it's the HEARTLESS disregard for Thor.

Wincest - "Supernatural" The fandom for this enduring CW show is a rabid one and I've heard of MANY ships (mostly involving Castiel) but when incest comes into play things get gross and when BORING Sam is involved, the gross goes up to eleven.

Weasley Twincest - Harry Potter What's worse than incest? F*cking twincest. Disgusting. (This might be even more disgusting. NOT SAFE FOR ANYWHERE.)

Jacobee - Twilight And what's worse than twincest? This absolutely apalling pairing courtesy of THE AUTHOR HERSELF. Stephenie Meyer has proved that her craft is not much loftier than fanfiction but this business with the love story between a werewolf and a BABY?! We need to talk about it.

Author's Note: H/T to the Pajiba facebook for their disturbing and enlightening discussion and, to the fanfiction community, no major disrespect meant. But...a TARDIS? COME ON.

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Comments Are Welcome, Bigots and Trolls Are Not

  • celery

    Fandom is a magical place. Sometimes, yeah, things can get weird, gross, uncomfortable. But this article could have found much weirder stuff to be snide about and much more interesting stuff to explore.

    Also, Stephenie Meyer's craft is "not much loftier than fanfiction"? I'm not sure in what universe Stephenie Meyer's craft is loftier than maybe 25% of fanfiction, let alone the whole category. Just because you heard about some weird porn doesn't mean fanfiction is limited to things like that.

  • dr. girlfriend

    Was this supposed to be funny? If so; fail. If it was supposed to be sanctimonious, judgmental, and obnoxious; well then kudos!

  • Ann

    What an ignorant and entitled article, man.
    It's your opinionand your right to express it, but your opinion sucks and is kinda gross.

  • Maddy

    I sincerely hope you ship show Dany/Jorah as opposed to the book because NO there is no way that is not creepy ... Iain Glen is way too good looking for Jorah (not that I'm complaining ...) and the age difference is much less creepy in the show ... BUT OBVIOUSLY Jaime and Brienne forever because FEELINGS ... I have thought about this way too much!

  • celery

    You have the same first name as me and I confess I'm slightly worried that the people I know in real life (who know, of course, that I heart Pajiba) are going to see your comments and think I'm you. especially because we share opinions on these ships. /pointless observation

  • Kit

    Don't hate on Sam, he is anything but boring and a main freakin character. He's amazing and perfect yet flawed. If you had actually watched the show and seen all the things Sam's been through you would know that boring couldn't be applied to him. Besides Sam and Dean are soulmates in canon so don't hate on the ship.

  • Dara

    I'm surprised those vampire shows are not on the list. What? You guys love dead body that much?

  • grossweb

    ANY ships involving Castiel is RAPE or NECROPHILIA.

  • Milla Jensen

    Meh. Haters are always going to spew hate on what they don't understand. Wincest is an amazing ship, the OTP of the show. Sam and Dean's love for each other is beautiful whether you ship them romantically or not and Sam is an all out great and complex character. <3

  • Gina

    Honestly though even in that Sam and Dean manip they do look attractive. Who cares if Sam is "boring", it's porn which isn't exactly about character development, the sex would be hot because Jared and Jensen are good looking together lol. I would buy a Wincest tape and fap to it before those uglies on Sherlock tumblr is so in love with for sure.

  • Grendel

    This is less coherent and frankly, way less interesting that most of the delusional shipping rants posted on Tumblr. I'm guessing that this is supposed to be tongue-in-cheek., possibly even funny. I hope. But honestly, you come of sounding like a thwarted fanbrat who's pissed at their OTP being downgraded to next season's subplot, and is now venting their spleen at some easy shipping targets. Because, hey people, these are disgusting, amirite! Fish in a barrel, really. Or maybe you're new. Hi, welcome to the Internets, we have porn here. Lots of it.

  • thehelldidijustread

    Really? That's what we're going with? God forbid anyone should enjoy a passionate love story between two fictional consenting adults (without giving a shit whether it's canon or ever will be) because gross, brother touching, ew ew ew, let's all ship Dean with one of the flat female characters instead. Or even better, let's pair him with the angel living in a human man's body, raising serious consent issues, and hey, if the man is actually dead, make him a necropheliac! Can we say RAPE, kiddies? Because that is way more appropriate than icky brother-touching.

    But harping on Sam? No. I actually feel sorry for you because if that's how it is, you're missing out on half of what makes Supernatural amazing.

    It's about family. Not brothers. Not shipping. Not queer subtext. Family. That means no one is left behind. Sam is strong, talented, smart, beautiful, and all-out amazing. He's half of the show. Dean is lucky to have him as a brother and he damn well knows it. Watch the show sometime, douche.

  • InternetMagpie


  • Nathan Convey

    It can't be Sam. He thinks wincest is gross too.

  • BrothersLoversHunters

    So this site NEVER talks about Supernatural and now the only time you do you're trashing my OTP AND one of the main characters?! Hell no. This show gets no respect and now you take it even further. Great job. If anyone writing for this snobtacular site actually took the time to watch SPN - but, gasp, it's on CW - maybe they would find it has great drama, comedy, meta that rivals your precious 'Community,' and a very talented and dedicated cast and crew. But no, eew incest is yucky, is the only commentary we get. Bagging on Sam Winchester is really great too by the way, it may be your opinion but he's one of the main characters, the show doesn't exist without him, and it's pointed out as a reason not to ship Wincest. REALLY? Where are Seth and Amy when you need them. I'm done with this site. Yep, that's me being a 'CRAZY SHIPPER' ooooga booga.

  • And people wonder why shippers get a bad name.

  • InternetMagpie


  • InternetMagpie

    FanFic is GREAT. What is truly weird is fanfic of REALITY SHOW PEOPLE. I read one once about Stacy and Clinton from What Not to Wear... yeeeah.

  • the dude

    I've shipped pretty much every combination of characters from Freaks adn Geeks.

  • TheOriginalMRod

    Wow. People are creepy.

  • zeke_the_pig

    Well, I need a shower.

  • Jim

    It's may not be in the script but Downey and Ruffalo seem to play their interactions like a pair of guys just on the edge of dating. I keep expecting one to fix an out of place hair on the other while they're talking and one of the other characters to say "oh for God's sake will you two just get a room already?"

  • lowercase_ryan

    your link is broken.

    I heard! I heard your link was broken!

  • stella

    Dude. Why are they they leaving Thor out? That's so mean. In other news, sibling sex is gross guys.

  • BlackRabbit

    Shipping is wrong, and bad. There should be a new, stronger word for
    shipping, like badwrong or badong. YES, shipping is badong. From this
    moment, I will stand for the opposite of shipping, gnodab.

  • Palaeologos

    You can't know how long I've waited for the opportunity to give props to a Kung-Pow! reference here.

  • BlackRabbit

    I rock. And roll. All day long. Sweet Suzy.

  • Jerce

    Oh, this stuff is nothing. Nothing.

    The stuff below is from 2009, so Internet perverts have had nearly four years to do worse. Peruse at your own risk. I take no responsibility:

  • Kris

    Oh, they've done worse. Unfortunately, io9 decided that Making Fun Of Terrible Fan Fiction is Wrong, and so Rob no longer does Fan Fic Friday. Frankly, I thought the idea of Captain America turning Tony Stark into a honey-glazed ham and then having his wicked way with his human Easter Dinner was totally hilarious, but I was in the minority.

  • Jerce

    If Making Fun Of Terrible Fan Fiction is Wrong, I sure as shit don't want to be right.

  • Scorptilicus

    The Dany/Jorah ship isn't as weird on the show, which is where I first encountered it. In the book, where I still would imagine Emilia Clarke only to be reminded from time to time that she's 14 or 15? That's a little more questionable.

  • The Replicant Brooke

    "I'm going to have sex with that baby." - Jacob

  • e jerry powell

    And then there's Olitz...

    Which is driving me up the fucking walls.

  • Genevieve Burgess

    Honestly, by the end of the season I wanted Olitz to work just so 1. they'd stop screwing up everyone else's lives with their crap and 2. watching Olivia orchestrate Fitz's divorce would have been barrels of fun. Particularly the part where she got to put Mellie out. Kerry Washington and Tony Goldwyn might have great chemistry, but watching Olivia and Mellie go toe to toe is almost BETTER.

  • e jerry powell

    Now that PapaRow is around, hopefully B6-13 will put an end to it for at least the second term.

  • soapy

    I would add any shipping of real live people - Brad and Jen, Rob and Kristen, etc etc. It's just bizarre to me.

  • competitivenonfiction

    Yeah, this creeps me out far more than any fictional ship. Especially the level of personal investment that goes into this, and the inability to differentiate between characters and real people.

  • Help me I have a problem

    Ok I'm just gonna say it, SanSan are my Crack Ship. I know it's disgusting and wrong, even without factoring in the age gap, but I really couldn't help it during the second book. Now since they are my crack ship, that basically means I would never actually want them to get together, because ew, and that most fan fiction with them creeps me out, but I just really enjoyed Sandor watching over Sansa. Yes, I am a terrible person, and she was terrified of him so that just makes it worse.

  • Maddy

    I'm pretty sure in the books that Sandor is 27 while Sansa is 13? Age difference actually wouldn't be that bad when she's an adult and not nearly as bad as 50-something Jorah and 14 year old Dany because NO

  • celery

    Seriously, Jorah/Dany is the ickiest of the ick. I'm no SanSan fan (although I agree with BlackRabbit that their platonic interactions are good and interesting), but Jorah is a skeevy skeev and the age difference there is crazy.

  • BlackRabbit

    Weirdly, as characters they'd work together. Not sex, that's icky with the age difference. I think they'd just be good for each other.

  • Lisa Bee

    Just like the literal shipping prices you pay for things ordered online, there is a fine line between reasonable/regular shipping and fucking insanity.

    For example:
    - "$3 to mail me a necklace from China? Well I understand that." versus, "$99 for a cheap ass pennywhistle? HELL NO."
    - "Jack Harkness and Ianto Jones together? That's adorable!" versus, "You need to get the fuck outta my house with that Wincest shit. I will have none of that." (Which is a sentence literally uttered by a member of my family not to long ago... Shhh, okay yes, it was me.)

  • I get the fantasy aspect of it. What I don't get is when fanatics get MAD at the actors for not indulging them. It's one thing to have fantasies about fictional people. Hell, that's kinda what they are there for. But to try and impose your false images onto reality, and then get upset that they don't or won't work? That is insane.

    The Supernatural fandom is infamous for this, but it is not limited to them. It is why I totally sided with Nathan Fillion when he chose not to indulge that one fan's random request. Stuff like that, the refusal to recognize the line between fiction and reality, that concerns me more than some teenager getting his or her rocks off writing about twoo luv.

    By the way, don't ever, ever, EVAR get into Avatar: The Last Airbender shipping. That way lies madness.

  • Fabius_Maximus

    I know someone who is a huge Supernatural fan (because of the men involved, obviously). When she told me she wrote fan-fiction, I asked if I wanted to read it. She replied "no" with such a dirty grin on her face it still makes me want to take a shower.

    I don't understand Castiel "shipping". Angels aren't equipped, people. You'd think "Dogma" taught that to everyone.

  • Angels in Supernatural take possession of human bodies, similar to demons. They can even be exorcised, but in a different manner. So they have the equipment that came standard on the ride, if not the wherewithal to read the manual.

    I only know this because my brother loves the show and has the reruns on constantly. I swear.

  • Fabius_Maximus

    Hey, I like the show, too, and I'm a heterosexual male. It's basically an expensive Hunter: The Vigil LARP.

    Yeah, I know about that possession thing. I'm still going with Metratron.

  • I have nothing against liking the show. It's the pondering about angel junk that I'm being defensive about.

  • Fabius_Maximus

    I won't mention it again, if you'll do the same.

  • PaddyDog

    Wasn't it well-established in Der Himmel Uber Berlin that once the angel decides to abandon armor and wings and come to earth he becomes rather well-equipped?

  • Fabius_Maximus

    Dunno. It's been ages since I've seen that movie. Castiel's still an angel, though (or has been since the end of this season).

  • Zen

    These things are all imaginary (apart from Twilight); they will never make it into canon and many shippers realise this already. Before you ask, I don't ship - it's not my thing.

    But wrinkling your nose, pointing at people and saying "you're disgusting!" isn't going to stop anyone. Does it ever? You could have just written a list of "Shippers that Annoy Me" and you would have gotten an interesting comments section. But no, this is just counterpoint to this.

  • Zen

    Huh. Link didn't work.

  • abell

    I get Doctard. I mean, not physically, sexually, because, weirdos, but, that the TARDIS is a living being and has spent the longest time with the Doctor and they love each other, hell, I think that's cannon.

    I also get the desire to write fanfictions to spell out the naughty bits that authors ignored, or to play with the paths the authors teased but decided against (the third leg of the love triangle). Hell, it's your porn, why not go for a threesome. Because that's all still grounded in some inkling of plot and actual characterization.

    What I don't get is the desire to ship characters that absolutely have no indication or hint of a relationship whatsoever. Surprise, Snape fucks everyone! Doesn't make any sense at all, and is nothing more than you shoehorning someone else's characters into your uninspired sex scene and godawful writing. Surprise, every character's gay and any antagonistic relationship is just the prelude to fucking! Why? Why? I know there's a derth of gay characters to fantasize about, but, frankly, Captain Jack Harkness should fill all your needs in that regard (I'm pretty sure he'd do any cosplay you'd like anyway). And the incest. I don't even. I just don't.

    In summation, I'm onboard with your porno writing, but, for the love of god, please make it slightly plausible.

  • Does that mean you don't want to read my 250,000 word magnum opus about Frodo and Green Lantern boning each other on the Green Lantern planet?

  • Rochelle

    Is there fisting? I'll only read it if there's fisting.

  • There's big green boxing glove fisting, plus you'll never believe what else you can put the One Ring on besides a finger.

  • abell

    Absolutely not.... wait, will Capt. Picard be there? I'm willing to make an exception if Picard's involved

  • Sara_Tonin00

    I am so disturbed/amused right now.

  • Rochelle


  • PaddyDog

    Of course if you want to the take the Doctard thing seriously, you have to admit that he stole the TARDIS to begin with so he essentially kidnapped it/her and forced it/her to travel with him so sexual contact initiated by him would be rape.

  • abell

    I already covered, that sex with a box is weird, and they ran away together, you Victorian prude.

  • I feel like I'm thinking about this too hard, but...
    Since the TARDIS seems to have a certain amount of will/control, maybe he officially stole her when they really ran away together.

  • PaddyDog

    She has Stockholm syndrome. She has some control but is she exercising it without subtle duress?

  • Considering what she did to Rose and Blon, I don't think that's really giving her enough credit. If she didn't want to go, I don't think the Doctor could have gotten away with her.

  • That was kind of my first thought about Doctard. She is living. I always figure when they go off course or end up somewhere unexpected, it's because she decided that's where she wanted/they needed to be.

    I'm with you on having it make some kind of sense. I read this absolutely brilliant piece of writing about Snape the day the coffee maker in the teacher's lounge was broken. It was absolutely hilarious clear up until Harry Potter, the school's Quiddich teacher, showed up with a cup and he and Snape started making out.

  • Now that the 'do not open this door' barrier in my memory has been nudged aside, I also recall reading a rather perplexing Icabod Crane/Headless Horseman fic once. The writing was, again, surprisingly good, but that just doesn't make any damned sense.

  • BobbFrapples

    Supernatural even has an episode where the Wincest is brought up by a superfan. Ships happen whether we like it or not. That particular one makes me need a bleach bath.

  • Wolfhoodie


  • Cazadora

    The wolf/little girl pic looks sweet in a new agey kind of way. Until you know what it is and then it's all ick.

    There's lots of Thor/Loki shipping out there too.

  • BlackRabbit

    Thor is Thorsexual. He ships himself

  • F'mal DeHyde

    I'm hoping the picture was created by an artist that had no knowledge of Twilight because it's really pretty and I don't want it tainted.

  • Lauralyn

    I am the natural enemy of most "shippers" considering I follow canon at pretty much always.* This has made my tumblr as box a place of much anger.
    *except Captain America and Agent thirteen. I personally feel Peggy will always be the superior Carter.

  • gp

    wut? no MCRONAGALL?

  • PerpetualIntern


  • but when he dips, does she dip?

  • Sam is NOT boring! That said, the whole notion of Wincest has kept me from reading *any* SPN fan fiction. Because no. Just... NO.

  • BrothersLoversHunters

    Seriously, the Sam hate is mind boggling. The characters on this show have so much depth. Sam has gone through hell, saved the world, and the reason not to ship him is he's BORING? Hate Wincest all you want Pajiba but don't even with the Sam hate.

  • InternetMagpie


  • I gotta go with Nate on this one. I started watching 'Supernatural' because it was on Netflix Instant and Sam almost immediately annoyed me. Seven seasons later, I can't say he's improved all that much.

  • NateMan

    Dude, Sam is totally boring. He substitutes whining and long, flowing locks for personality. He takes killing monsters and driving around in a kickass car and makes it seem DULL. You're mistaking that quirk of his eyebrows and the duck face he makes when he finds out something traumatic and looks like he has to poo for actual depth. :)

  • Nope. I think he's smart and funny and stuck in a crap situation. Considering that both of them need to grow the fuck up, I'll take the reluctant hero over the self-righteous prick. Mostly, though, I like Bad!Sam. Blood drinking, total screw up, sometimes soulless Sam. You know, when he loses the angst for a little while and just starts killing things wholesale. "Wait your turn..." Never gonna get old.

  • NateMan

    Bah. You're so wrong it's like a black hole of wrongness, and I feel trapped on the event horizon. I agree bad Sam is far more entertaining than good Sam. But Dean gets shit done. His is the character that's grown - admittedly, that's probably mostly because the writers realized Sam was dull after the first season, and made it waaaaaay more about Dean in subsequent seasons. Sam is just the guy things happen to. He's the Companion to Dean's Doctor, to mix shows. I wonder if they'd get all stabby on a Time Lord... That'd be kind've awesome. Also, Dean loves pie. And yes, that's enough to gain him extra points.

    Of course, Castiel and Crowley are by far more entertaining (and if anyone tells me Crowley gets killed at the end of the current season, what with me not having watched it yet, I'll have their guts for garters).

  • I agree about Castiel and Crowley, and I would never spoil a finale! Of all the people on SPN, I would most like to sit down and have a drink - or many - with Mark Sheppard. I will watch any show he's on.

    And my aversion to Dean may have something to do with having dated some version of that guy on multiple occasions. I can't go there anymore. I'll admire the pretty from a distance and hang out with Dumbledork instead.

  • Lee


  • NateMan

    I can understand that. Certainly my intense dislike of Sam has a lot to do with having seen too many people in college and the working world mistaking indecision for actual crisis, and wanting to tell them to just STFU and get something done already. Seriously, Sam would angst over the moral dilemma of picking that day's hair product.

  • AudioSuede

    This is Rule 34 at its finest.

  • toblerone

    Who knew Andy and Ollie grew up to be such douches...

  • Sofia

    Werewolf bar mitzvah
    Spooky scary

    Boys becoming men
    Men becoming wolves
    Wolves molesting girls

  • PerpetualIntern

    I just let out a yelp-type snort. I think my officemates are concerned.

  • NateMan

    I think fanfic in general shows a bit too much love for imaginary people. I mean, I know some people enjoy it, but I can't imagine taking my undying love for all things Discworld, for example, and trying to write a story in which Sam Vimes and Granny Weatherwax get it on. Or hell, a story with these two characters at all. They're not mine to mess with. They belong to Sir Pratchett, and with him they should stay.

    Apparently I have some weird moral objection to fanfic even if it's not obscene. Huh. Never really thought about it before.

  • psykins

    I used to write a bit of fanfiction when I was around 13-16 (mostly Star Wars - Han/Leia is my only OTP ;P), but I grew out of it when my own life started becoming more interesting. In fact, I just checked my old page, and the last fanfic I wrote was in 2008, shortly after I started my first serious relationship. I think they were a way for me to express my adolescent sexual/romantic desires, and once those were somewhat satisfied in the real world fanfic was no longer appealing to me.

    It's a great way of escapism, but I think writing fanfic damaged my confidence in myself as a writer - I have a sneaking suspicion that I'm really no good at making up characters/worlds/rules of worlds for myself, and that I'm only halfway decent when I steal other peoples'. I used to write pages and pages every night before bed, and now I don't write at all - very sad.

  • LexieW

    This. This is the exact same reason I wrote and read fanfic for the better part of a decade. It also was the first thing that got me writing, and I too struggled with that lack of confidence in my own imagination. I started writing for fun again years later, to deal with my awful first job. I'm close now to actually getting paid for my fiction.
    Try again :)

  • Eh, it's fine enough for teenagers. But there are grownass people out there writing some of this stuff, and it creeps me out. Worse--some of them are getting famous doing it. Look at fucking 50 Shades of Grey.

  • Sara_Tonin00

    Here's a prompt for you: start by writing fanfic of yourself. Imaginary journal entries.

    Anyway, you wouldn't be alone - it's not like Terry Brooks was any good at developing his own characters/worlds/rule - he pretty much stole wholecloth from Tolkien, and he's definitely not the only fantasy author to do so.

    There's this great little book - Steal Like an Artist - Among other ways to jumpstart your creativity, it says there ain't no shame in copying what you love until you love what you yourself are creating.

    Btw, my friends and I wrote terrible, terrible fanfic, and fiction based on classmates, and erotic fiction based on sports figures we had crushes on (soooo embarrassing) - while we were figuring ourselves out in 7-9th grades.

  • Sara_Tonin00

    Pastiche is a long and honorable tradition. It's also a way of finding your voice. Write songs like the Beatles. Write stories using Conan Doyle's characters. This is just taking it all the parts of literary interest out, and focusing on the parts of prurient interest.

    And though if I was an author, I'd be really proprietary of my characters, the truth is - "owning" a character is a fairly recent literary development, when so many stories were recycled by authors and playwrights, and so many characters were stock.

  • NateMan

    It may be a recent development, but it's still 'wrong' (for what little that's worth) to take someone else's creations, without the permission of the creator, and make them your own.

    I've gotten a couple pieces of short fiction published, and if I came across someone's portrayal of my characters as their own, or as some sort of weird homage, I'd be annoyed.

    And I wouldn't consider it a pastiche, either. Lots of people create homages to other writers' styles, but to actively steal characters and worlds, name for name, and write about them for an audience without the author's permission... Sorry, it feels wrong.

    Edit, for example, I just finished listening to 'Smoke and Mirrors' by Gaiman - he narrates all the stories himself, and they're fantastic, by the way. I really recommend them. And there are a couple pieces in there that could be considered pastiche; Troll Bridge, a version of the Billy Goats Gruff; Baywolf, a conglomeration of Beowulf and Baywatch that should not, in any universe, work as well as it does; and a version of Snow White told by the 'evil' Queen. Now that's pastiche. Fanfic is simply a rip-off.

  • Liz

    But you're talking as if there is a single author or creator for characters. That might be true for books but it's not true with film adaptations and TV shows which have many authors who write for the characters.

    Take Doctor Who, for example. With a 50 year of television episodes, audio programs for radio, novels, comic books, etc., there are literally hundreds of "authors" for the characters and they are all considered part of the canon and approved of by the BBC who is a partial copyright owner.

    Even one season of a TV show might have over a dozen writers turning out episodes...I'm sure that the best of fan fiction is indistinguishable from the work of some of these screenwriters. The line can get fuzzier than you think.

  • Not just Amazon. There is also Worldbuilder

    It is basically approved fanfiction in multiple media, and if it impresses the publisher, they will actually publish and pay for it.

    I have to agree with Sara_Tonin00. Pastiche is pretty much responsible for a lot of great stuff. Hell, throw in anything considered public domain, including anything to do with folklore (like most monsters and fairy tales). By your definition, anything based on those would be wrong too.

  • Sara_Tonin00

    Pastiche has multiple definitions, but it does include something like writing your own Sherlock Holmes story (which many a reputable author has done).

    It's interesting thing to consider, because using someone else's characters has lead to great works of art, things we aren't bothered by. Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead. The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. Wicked. Any film adaptation of any classical novel that doesn't completely follow the source material isn't that different from fanfic.

    Amazon just created an online store actually licensing some properties to allow fans to write AND sell their fanfic work. (think of the money Stephenie Meyer would've made if she got a cut of 50 Shades). (I'm actually surprised this wasn't mentioned in the post above: http://artsbeat.blogs.nytimes.... )

    And while, as I said, I'd be proprietary about characters I created, I wonder if people "stealing" them is any worse than writing about real people, "stealing" their lives and experiences?

  • Yeah, me too. I can't read it. I've tried, but every time I just start thinking about it, and that someone took the time to do this and just...yeah, can't do it. I'm judgy as heeell.

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