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I worship at the television altar
Smallville: Death of a Shipper
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hils From: hils Date: January 20th, 2008 01:37 pm (UTC) (Link)

This could turn into a long comment

My TV shows are pretty evenly split between ones where I have a ship and ones where I don't. Although saying that even my non-shippy shows didn't start off that way.

Let's start with Buffy, because that's where it all began for me. Buffy was the show that first propelled me into online fandom. The year was 1999 and after joining a couple of forums someone asked me if I wrote fanfic. My reply? 'What's fanfic?' LOL! Oh, if only I'd known where I'd wind up 10 years later. LOL

But I digress. Like you, I tended to follow what the main character wanted. Buffy wanted Angel so I wanted her to be with him. At least, unlike Smallville, Angel was a hero like Buffy and was worthy of her love. But it was not meant to be and at the end of Season 3 he left to be in his own show. It didn't really matter though because I'd already latched onto my new ship thanks to some stellar fanfic I had read. It also lead me to my thing as far as ships go. I'm all about the forbidden love. I really go for ships where the characters shouldn't be together for whatever reason. In the case of Buffy it was Buffy/Spike.

Spike, like Angel, was a vampire but there was no soul keeping him on the right path. Instead it was his love for Buffy stopping him from embracing the dark side (sound familiar?) I read and I read and then I wrote and I wrote. Finally the show gave us what we wanted, but in that Joss Whedon way where it's not really what we wanted. LOL. Buffy and Spike started sleeping together but it was a very dark and twisted relationship. Ironically this was when I started to lose interest in them. I'm all about the subtext and when what I imagine happens on screen it loses the magic, plus it's never quite the way I want it. LOL.

Let's jump ahead to Smallville, because that's what this post is all about. Like you I am a big fan of the whole Superman story (although I never got into Lois and Clark. I have Season 1 on DVD so I can give it another go but I hate Teri Hatcher). When my housemate bought Seasons 1-4 of Smallville on DVD (just so she could see Jensen in Season 4 and still understand what was happening) I was curious. When she told me that she'd watched Season 1 and the best thing about it was the Clark/Lex shippiness I recoiled. You DO NOT ship Superman and Lex Luthor!

I sat down and watched it and by the end of The Pilot I could see that she was right. There was an amazing chemistry between Clark and Lex that was so much more interesting than the stupid crap that was going on with Clark and Lana (aside from the cute graveyard scene I was never a Clana shipper). It took a few more episodes but by Shimmer I was well and truly on board the Clex ship and I was reading as much Clex fic as I could get my hands on. Seriously, I got told off by the mod at sv_inquiry for posting too much. Not long after that I started writing it and I've never looked back.

To me it will always be about Clark and Lex, even though the shippiness on the show has well and truly died. I am content to make it up in my head (as my episode snippets will demonstrate)

I have never really been into a het ship on Smallville but if I was it would definitely be Chlark. I actually have a bunny for a sweet hurt/comfort Chlark fic set around Sneeze which I am hopefully going to write this year some time.

I'm really having trouble seeing how Clark is going to end up in love with Lois, and I agree with your assessment that she started off great in Season 4 (see my love of Crusade) and then slowly faded away. I suppose it doesn't help that the writers of the show seem to think it's as much about Lana as it is about Clark. Grr!!

So I will continue to be a Clex shipper until Lex leaves. Who knows what will happen after that. I'm not even sure I'll continue to watch the show once Lex has gone, but I will certainly continue to write until I run out of bunnies
tariel22 From: tariel22 Date: January 20th, 2008 03:09 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: This could turn into a long comment

Thanks so much for your long, thoughtful response! Oh, I struggled with Buffy and Spike! I remember I felt like it was bad for both of them, and just so twisted. The part I hated the most was how awful she was to him, and how ashamed she was that they were together. But at the same time I was rooting for them. Leave it to Joss to make me think and feel in ways I never expected, and to redefine shipping altogether on that show.

It's funny, I had a whole paragraph written about Clex, because how can you talk about Smallville ships and leave that one out, but I deleted it, because honestly, I can't truly ship something that has no hope of happening, and I know AlMiles are not going to give us the first gay Superman. I read Clex fic, I love the HoYay in the show, but for me it's a fantasy world that exists outside the show. I don't say that to discount it in any way, mind you, but rather to point out that whatever stupid stuff they're doing on the show doesn't affect it. They could have Clark marry Chloe and have ten little Chlark babies on the show, and everyone would still write passionate and tender Clex fic. Of course you could say that about any ship; that's what fanfic is for, isn't it? To give us what the show doesn't? But Clex in particular, for me, is fanfic driven.

I have a hard time reconciling Smallville's Lois with my idea of the iconic Lois Lane, but I've decided that's not really my worry, and I'm not going to stress about it anymore. I feel like this show has made plenty of missteps with the legend of Superman already, and I can't fix any of those either. And in spite of all that, I unapologetically love this show, and I will watch it until it is no more. I love Clark, and Tom's portrayal of him, and that's pretty much enough all by itself.

Thanks again for reading, and commenting. I hope people understand that I'm just talking about what works for me, and that I don't mean to diminish or disrespect anyone's beloved ship, truly!
hils From: hils Date: January 20th, 2008 04:17 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: This could turn into a long comment

I hope people understand that I'm just talking about what works for me, and that I don't mean to diminish or disrespect anyone's beloved ship, truly!

Oh, I'm sure no one will think that. It was a really interesting post :)
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