Jul. 16th, 2010

doyle: ten/jackson lake (dw - ten/jackson)
To make up for not watching any TV at all while writing up my thesis, apart from an episode of Doctor Who every Saturday, and occasionally staring in a stupefied way at the football if it happened to be on, I'm catching up on shows I've missed, or ones I've never seen (Being Erica - awesome and Quantum Leap-y and Bechdel-test passing! Community - only on episode 6 but I love it. Criminal Minds - very good, but gives me night terrors and I may need to get somewhat further into it before I grasp why the fanfic seems to be 90% about Reid and guy-who-looks-a-bit-like-Wilson). So I ended up watching all of Better Off Ted in two days, and then went looking for people talking about it, when I ran across this description, probably on TV Tropes:

"A lot of people ship Ted/Veronica instead of the canon pairing Ted/Linda..."

Which make me skid to a "what, wait?" halt: not because the existence of Ted/Veronica shippers is a surprise - it took me an entire season to realise I was actually meant to be shipping him with Linda, not Veronica, who is incredible in her awesomeness - but because of the 'canon pairing' bit. Spoilers for relationships in Better Off Ted )

Of the two, I'd say Ted/Linda isn't canon while Ted/Veronica is at least arguably so - which led me to the conclusion I'm Doing It Wrong, or Defining It Wrong, when it comes to 'canon pairing'. When I use that term, I mean a couple who are or were unambiguously in a relationship, to the point that unless you were writing AU fic you would have to explain why this couple aren't/haven't been together: so Amy/Rory and Gwen/Rhys are canon but Ian/Barbara aren't, no matter how much I like the pairing, because you could quite easily write fic where nothing beyond the platonic ever happened between them without contradicting a thing in canon. It seems like when other people say 'canon pairing' they mean that it's... sanctioned by canon, somehow? A couple the show writers are portraying as a potential romantic relationship even if it never actually becomes one, because the characters leave or get killed off or the show is cancelled or things just go in a different direction? (This would explain the Torchwood fic I saw labelled 'canon pairings' that included Jack/Gwen. Though as I recall some Jack/Ianto fans weren't at all pleased about that.)

I'll add that to the list of 'somewhat nebulous terms in fandom (especially Doctor Who fandom)', along with canon, OTP and multishipper (that last one was one I thought was pretty well established till the wank this week).

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doyle

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