Last week on Bones I was all about Angel and Bones being epic platonic partners, but apparently, all it took to make me go "they should get married! Right now!" was the introduction of a moppet. It seems that I really am just *that* easy. (They *should* get married, it's just one of the tragedies of our society that marriage is supposed to be about sex, and Angel has no romantic chemistry with anyone.)
Boston Legal *terrifies* me. Okay, partly it terrifies me that it seems to be stellar_dust's favorite show right now. Partly, though? The whole time I'm watching, I'm terrified that DENNY CRANE will slip and lose his concentration and the world will go out - bang! - just like a candle! No, really, DENNY CRANE is god, but he's one of those old gods who's apt to accidently smite someone because he got distracted by a passing goat. I kept expecting him to doze off and unintentionally turn the conference table into a bowl of petunias. It's *freaky* and I'm in a constant state of nervous tension.
And House. Ah, House. I was right in my prediction about being dragged into House. But also wrong. It's like one of House's diagnoses! That is, I'm completely stuck on the show (actually, mostly stuck on Dr. House, but more on that later), but the fandom is really disappointing me. Partly, it's that I was expecting there to be just plain *more* fic, after all I'd heard about the fandom. This has, however, been remedied by the *excellent* availability of pirate eps, so I'm mostly watching my way through the show instead of reading fics. But partly it's that I can't really get into shipping any of the popular pairings, and there is almost no gen fic. In fact, the closest thing the fandom has to a casefile, at the moment, seems to be astolat's "Pathogenesis and Intervention", which is great, but is not *really* a casefile like an XF casefile would be.
I can understand why - all it takes to write an acceptable XF casefile is a book of folklore and some ideas on how to put Mulder and Scully into compromising positions. To write a House casefile you'd have to have a Housian level of hubris about your knowledge of medicine. Because House at least *pretends* to use science and logic in its mystery-solving. But. Still. I've at least skimmed all of House Fan Fiction and there. are. none. Not even crappy attempts featuring mary-sue patients dying of victorian novel disease. Even almost no medical B-plots in shipper stories. Is it really true that *nobody* is watching this show for the plots? I'm beginning to understand why I've always stuck to sf fandoms before.
It's resonating sadly with thete1's recent essay about pairing up fans with the right fandoms (I really should just give in and flist her.) I fit right into her category of contented squee'ers, because all I really want in a fandom is MORE CRACK PLEASE (and not to stretch the cocaine metaphor beyond its limits, but my attempts at delurking really are, to an embarrassingly large extent, mostly on the level of the monkey who keeps pressing the lever because there just *might* be a feedback high coming - I write and think about the stuff involuntarily, but I have no overwhelming urge to share it, except for that classic variable-ratio conditioning.) But I'm still having trouble getting into House fandom because, well, I *love* the characters and the characterization on the show, but *all* of the possible relationship permutations are black holes of emotional pain. I mean, yes, House and Wilson are *totally* married, but half the time on the *show*, I'm watching the slashy scenes with my eyes squinched shut because I can't bear to watch the trainwreck. And I like them too much to wish more of that on them. Chase & House are occasionally something within spitting distance of a healthy relationship, but I can't help reading it as a father/son thing, which would *not* be healthy if it got slashed. As for the het possibilities?
Well, this goes back to that old fandom THING about why do fangirls always fall for the characters who are unavailable, evil, or just plain unattractive. Which I can date back to when I was ten and reading David Gerrold trying to figure out the appeal of Spock, but which probably dates back to some Greek mythmaker asking his why she 'ships Aphrodite with *Hephaestus*, of all people.
Mmm. Hephaestus. Spiteful misanthropic cripples.
Err, where was I? Oh yes, it's my private theory that there are two main, and very different, reasons why women fall for fictional characters like House, who nobody in their right mind would date in real life, and these two types are exemplified by the two main het 'ships in House fandom.
The first type are the girls who like to fantasize about a lover they can *fix*. They'll find a severely broken guy, and by the power of their love and sacrifice, make him all better again. Except along with being fundamentally nice people and good human beings who have issues with power, like Cameron, they are also (usually) smart enough to realize that that sort of thing is much more fun in fantasy, where it has more than a snowball's chance in heck of actually *working*. So, they go after the fictional characters instead.
The other type are the girls who like bastards and emotionally unavailable guys because it gives them the freedom to be as bitchy and evil as they want, in return, without feeling guilty about it afterward. Hence Lisa Cuddy, who is also smart enough to realize that actually *dating* a guy like that would make her miserable. But it sure is fun to sit back and watch him make *other* people miserable, especially if they're just fictional people. So they rant about how the other sort of fangirl isn't brave enough to enjoy the bastards for what they *are*. Which is bastards.
I fall firmly in the second camp, of course, but I don't say that what the fixer-uppers are doing is *bad*. They just have a different kink. But in terms of House fandom, this leaves me with the belief that Cuddy is too smart to date House, and House is too smart to date Cameron. So in terms of ships among recurring characters (up to episode 1x11 or so, anyway) I'm left with anything involving Foreman (and I don't actually like Foreman) or Cameron/Chase and Cuddy/Wilson. Both of which I'm actually growing fond of; it's too bad the fic base for "House" is too small to really sustain rarepairs like that. 'Rarepair' being anything that doesn't have House in it, because really, it's all about House. So I'm left watching every ep and shipping House with any female patient who shows half a chance of keeping up with him. (I'm seriously considering writing House/Georgia Adams smut, seeifIdon't.)
Yeah, I'm firmly in the second camp. But what House has suddenly brought to the forefront is that there's a certain type of character *within* that category who has the ability to make me fall for them *instantly*, to start saying 'favorite character ever!' while overlooking any number of flaws. I'll list a few of them. See if you can figure out what they have in common. House. Methos. Jack O'Neill and John Sheppard. Hilda Corners. Alan Mendelssohn. Fred Cassidy.
Figured it out yet? They're all obscenely smart people who don't, actually, give a damn. That is to say, they have no drive. Their natural state is a state of rest. Not that they won't save the galaxy if it's really necessary, but you have to convince them first that it's really their job, and as soon as the galaxy is safe again they go back to their fishpond. Or library, or spaceship, or whatever. I don't like my geniuses tragic and driven; I like them lazy and hedonistic. Snarky cynicism is just a bonus.
If you know me at all you may be sensing some small bit of narcissism there, to which I can only say 'of course'. When I'm feeling less depressed than I currently am about my lack of motivation, I think of it in terms of the proverbial dolphins, who are too smart to bother with silly things like civilization.
Not that I don't like other types of characters, and even obsess about them at times, they just don't click in the same irrevocable way my lazy troublemakers do. And I suspect this is why I'm so inordinately fond of Bruce Wayne, Playboy, because if he was real that's who he would be. And why, even though I hated the resolution of the Sam arc in XF, I tend to write fic set after it, because then I can write a Mulder who's just that much less driven.
Right, that's enough meta for now. Off I go to think about Greg/Georgia before I sleep!