Tweeks: Fangirl Termonology Guide #1: Shipping
Editor’s Note: The Tweeks went on a lovely vacation this week and were unable to have a video ready. So, rather than let them off the hook and fully enjoy their vacay, I asked them to write a little something. And boy am I glad I did! ~Adriane Nash
Sometimes it’s hard to explain to your parents or other assorted adults what exactly you are FanGirl-ing/FanBoy-ing on about if they don’t understand the language. We found that out first hand when our dad thought “Shipping” had something to do with space ships. Oh no, Dad. Really? This week we hope to start bridging the generation gap by sailing our Ships over it.
Shipping is when you take two characters from a fandom who you think would work well together and put them together. Shipping is basically “relationshipping,” but the characters you ship don’t have to be an actual couple (cannon) and can be made up of any combination of genders. Some older people call same-sex ships Slash Shipping, but there’s no need to label. All you need is chemistry between any two people in a fandom.
Fandom is short for “fanatic domain” – a collection of fans for a certain series, book, movie, pop culture, actor, basically anything a person could obsess about, which creates a giant ocean of possibilities.
However, self-insertion is frowned upon, so as much as Anya would like to ship herself with Flynn Ryder, FlynAnya is not a thing.
Chances are that anyone with a fandom has shipped before without even realizing it. The term “shippers” came from an old TV show called The X-Files referring to the fans who wanted the characters Mulder and Scully to be romantically involved. But before the term was even coined, fans pulled for other pop culture couples. Did you ship Archie and Betty or Archie and Veronica? Did you ship Buffy and Angel or Buffy and Spike? You could have even have shipped both, but deep down you’d have your OTP.
If all your fandom ships were a big navy, the OTP (One True Pairing) would be the head of the fleet. For example on Doctor Who, Maddy ships Ten and Rose, while Anya ships Eleven and River, but our OTP is Rory and Amy (Ramy). This is very important – you can have as many ships in a fandom as you can create. But you can only have one OTP.
Fans like to ship and OTP a lot of ridiculous things. When you cannot stand by and support a ship it’s called a NOtp. For example, JK Rowling feels Hermione and Malfoy (Dramione) are a NOtp. We think brothers are always a NOtp because it’s icky and gross and wrong. So obviously, we NOtp Thorki and Sam/Dean.
So let’s say in the Hunger Games fandom someone is Team Gale (like half of our English class). They have every right to (wrongly) ship Kale (Katniss and Gale), but since our OTP is Katniss and Peeta (Katpee, Peenis, Keeta – they are so amazing they have 3 Ship Names!) we will likely engage in a Ship War when the topic comes up. Ship Wars can be violent and intense. Fangirling is fueled by lots of drama.
Shipping and OTPs are not supposed to be platonic, but if you can’t help squeeing over a couple you want to declare the best BFFs forever, then that is brOTP or broshipping. Our Marvel brOTP is Grocket (Groot and Rocket Raccoon). Maddy broships Percy Jackson and Nico di Angelo (Pernico). Anya broships Jarchie (Jughead and Archie). Other popular brOTPs are Spirk (Spock and Kirk), Destiel (Dean and Castiel), Stony (Steve Rogers and Tony Stark), and Johnlock (Watson and Sherlock) though these are all way more popular OTPs out in fandom land.
Tweeks Top 5 OTPs
1 – Cecilos (Cecil & Carlos – Welcome To Nightvale )
2- Keeta (Katniss & Peeta – Hungergames)
3 – Captain Swan (Captain Hook & Emma Swan – Once Upon a Time)
4- Hagustus (Hazel & Augustus – Fault In Our Stars)