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Sosa lola
21-04-18, 07:18 AM
A ship fan: someone who is more focused on a certain ship. Will never read any fic where a character in their fave ship are paired with someone else.

A character fan: someone who is more focused on a certain character. They may have a favorite ship, but they don't mind reading their favorite character paired with someone else.




I'm a character fan: Xander being my favorite, and while Spander is my favorite ship, I'm interested in other Xander ships because I like reading Xander in new dynamics. I'm also a huge fan of gen and friendship fics which are not as popular as ship fics.

Other thing about me is: I love Xander because of his flaws. So, I despise fics where he's written as a woobified saint who gets mistreated by his parents, Scoobies and the whole world. No! I enjoy fics that explore Xander's mistakes and faults. That's why I'm upset Xander's lie was completely swept under a rug.

I wanna read about Xander's anger problems, about the way he argues his point spitefully and loudly, about his need to be noticed and respected as a hero (especially in the early seasons), how he uses inappropriate jokes to draw attention away from uncomfortable conversations and situations, and so on. That's far more interesting than Xander being a special snowflake who gets mistreated by others.

When I'm reading Xander/Spike, I don't wanna read about Buffy or Angel trying to break them up, I wanna read about Xander questioning his new pesky attraction to Spike and in result begins to put Spike down even more. Same goes for Spike.

Sweet Revenge (http://mysticmuse.net/authors/jackson/sweetrevenge.html) is a perfect example of Spike and Xander hurting each other viciously while the other Scoobies are more on the understanding side of things, after a certain point, the Scoobies actually try to get Spike and Xander to make up, but it's Xander and Spike who are being stubborn and causing the problems in the relationship. Not the Scoobies.


The reason I got into Xander/Buffy was because I've always been interested in their friendship, but sadly, people are more interested in pairing them together than explore their platonic dynamic (So I had to do it myself in my fic Put Yourself in My Shoes (https://archiveofourown.org/works/4713197/chapters/10764959)), and that's why I started reading Buffy/Xander and grew to enjoy the pairing.

Same story with Xander/Giles, I love the subtle hints of their dynamic on the show and always wanted to see it explored in fic, but alas, people are more interested in shipping them, so I read Xander/Giles slash and I am SO GLAD I did!!!

Dr Squidlove is a gift to the fanfic community! She is amazing. I wanna point every fanfic writer who relies heavily on bashing the Scoobies to read her fic The Giles Thing (https://epic-recs.livejournal.com/377950.html) which shows a sympathetic yet very real reaction to the Xander/Giles ship from the other Scoobies, and Joyce, and Xander's father. She's also written New York (http://members.iinet.net.au/~tentacles/buf/newyork.html), which is a masterpiece.



After reading every Xander ship out there, the ones that stood out the most are:

Slash Fics: Xander/Spike, Xander/Angel, Xander/Giles, Xander/Larry and Xander/Graham.
Het Fics: Xander/Cordelia, Xander/Buffy and Xander/Faith.



Sorry for the rambling, your turn! Are you a ship fan or a character fan? Which ships are your favorite and what do you look for in a fic?

MikeB
21-04-18, 04:34 PM
Shouldn't this thread be in the fan fiction section?

For the general Buffyverse, I'm a Buffyverse fan. I dismiss post-Season 9 because too much of Season 10 simply is directly opposed to established canon.

I like Spike/Drusilla, but Buffy/Spike, Spike/Fred, Spike/Illyria, Spike/Beck, and Spike/Morgan all could have worked.

I like Buffy/Spike, but would have been fine had BtVS S8 started with Buffy married and with a child.

And no character is unimpeachable. Faith by BtVS S7 could say she was now the "good Slayer". BtVS S8 furthers that. A&F S9 forever tarnishes Faith to the point I sold my 12 inch Sideshow Collectible Faith doll.

My 3 favorite characters used to be Spike, Buffy, and Willow. Each's actions in Season 8 and Season 9 results in Drusilla now being my favorite character. Faith used to be my fourth favorite character.

TimeTravellingBunny
21-04-18, 04:53 PM
I don’t read fanfiction in general, except very rarely and usually if it's recommended or I already trust that the author writes good fics. And when I do, I only like canon complient ones.

This doesn't mean that I'm against fanfiction in general, I get the worth of transformative works, but I personally have no interest in reading fiction nominally set in the same fictional world with the same characters where those characters have different sexual orientations or different relationships with important people in their life than what they have in canon. It creates a dissonance for me because I cannot see them as the same characters. I can only enjoy transformative works that change major things about the characters if I think that the canon work is very flawed and never lived to its potential.

Priceless
21-04-18, 05:40 PM
I'm definitely a ship fan. My favourite character is Buffy and I can't read any fic with her in any other relationship than with Spike. I've occasionally read a bangel fic for a bet, but it was a tough read and I wouldn't choose to do it again. Buffy will always belong with Spike imo.

Strangely enough, the other part of my favourite pairing, Spike, is a totally different matter. I have read and enjoyed lots of fics that have Spike paired with virtually every other character, though of course some pairings are more believable than others.

One of my favourite things in a Spuffy fic is when Spike rejects Buffy so she has to work hard to get him to fall for her.

GoSpuffy
21-04-18, 06:05 PM
I'm definitely a ship fan. My favourite character is Buffy and I can't read any fic with her in any other relationship than with Spike. I've occasionally read a bangel fic for a bet, but it was a tough read and I wouldn't choose to do it again. Buffy will always belong with Spike imo.

Strangely enough, the other part of my favourite pairing, Spike, is a totally different matter. I have read and enjoyed lots of fics that have Spike paired with virtually every other character, though of course some pairings are more believable than others.

One of my favourite things in a Spuffy fic is when Spike rejects Buffy so she has to work hard to get him to fall for her.
All this except I can read Buffy or Spike with another partner temporarily as long as they end up together.

flow
21-04-18, 06:50 PM
Regarding the series, I am a character fan. My favorite character is Buffy, but there is not a single character, I don`t like.

In FanFiction I only ever read Spuffy FanFiction. It is simply a matter too little time for anything else. I guess, that there are roughly about 8000 or more Spuffy FanFictions on the internet and there are still new ones being written and posted. I started reading Fanfiction about a year ago and I may have read about 250 fics so far. Going by that pace and the average life expectance I will not be able, to read every single Spuffy FanFiction until I am dead. And I haven`t even begun to re-read.

Thatīs why I can`t be bothered with reading other pairings.

flow

Priceless
21-04-18, 07:07 PM
Regarding the series, I am a character fan. My favorite character is Buffy, but there is not a single character, I don`t like.

In FanFiction I only ever read Spuffy FanFiction. It is simply a matter too little time for anything else. I guess, that there are roughly about 8000 or more Spuffy FanFictions on the internet and there are still new ones being written and posted. I started reading Fanfiction about a year ago and I may have read about 250 fics so far. Going by that pace and the average life expectance I will not be able, to read every single Spuffy FanFiction until I am dead. And I haven`t even begun to re-read.

Thatīs why I can`t be bothered with reading other pairings.

flow

Didn't you join in with the cross-ship fic read on the other board? I read a bangel fic, while the bangel fans read a Spuffy fic.

Silver1
21-04-18, 07:07 PM
I think I'm a character fan as I'd hate to just blinker myself by reading just one narrow band of fic. I like Spike's character to be in there somewhere, but not always.

I'm a 'lapsed' Spuffy, so I don't feel the need to have that be the main focus of a story to read it. I'm a slash gal too, although as the years go on I'm more drawn to any story so as It's a well written and intriguing tale.

KingofCretins
21-04-18, 07:49 PM
95% character fan. As a practical matter, it is 100%, since every 'ship I have any emotional energy invested in either never happened, wouldn't be permitted to happen or are just outside the scope of anything writers want to explore happening.

HardlyThere
21-04-18, 08:30 PM
Character > Ship. That's why I stopped reading fanfic.

ghoststar
21-04-18, 08:39 PM
I kind of fall in between these categories? Usually, I can back a few different ships for a character, but there’ll be a passel of others that makes me scratch my head. The various combinations of Fanged Four characters usually work for me, with the exception of Darla/Spike. I don’t see Bangel or Briley working as endgame, but I like both Spuffy fic and the rare find of bittersweet Briley. I tend not to read the other ships, unless I’m just feeling curiousl. Friendship fic is something I like in a lot of fandoms; unfortunately, my only B-verse BROTP is Spike & Dawn, which I can’t get enough of. I’m either a ship fan with definite tastes, or a character fan who likes a ship to be front and center. It could go either way.

Double Dutchess
21-04-18, 09:45 PM
Character fan first, then ship fan. Spike is by far my favourite Buffy character and I will read any fic that heavily features him, regardless of who he is paired with. But Buffy is my second favourite character, and as a shipper I'm a Spuffy first and foremost. I like Spangel a lot too. Pairings I'm not so keen on are Spike with Fred or Riley. This also used to hold for Spander, but it has grown on me.

I will occasionally also read fic that doesn't heavily feature Spike, but only if it comes highly recommended and/or the premise really appeals to me. As flow said, life is too short.

Rebcake
21-04-18, 11:30 PM
I'm a character fan, with a side of shippiness. It's just that there are so many characters! A good writer could probably talk me into most any pairing, but I especially like gen (no pairings or pairings not the focus) in fic, though it's harder to find nowadays. I'm not that interested in delving into Willow, Angel, or Wesley's love lives. I love Willow in the "Buffy's friend" role, which is odd to me because she had the BEST love interests in canon.

I will read Spike with just about anybody, especially canon pairings. Spike/wedding date? Bring it on! Buffy is my girl, but I always feel a little sorry for her when she's paired long-term with anybody BUT Spike. Spike/Dru/Angelus/Darla can be great in any combination. I believe in Giles/Ethan, but Giles has my permission to get it on with anybody to whom he's not a father figure. Faith can work with many, many characters. Joyce should have a little joy, Dawn should grow up and find somebody who adores her, Xander will struggle to connect with all sorts, and I won't be sad if he decides he's gay. Or not. Cordy can stick around with Angel if she wants to, but Dennis seems nice. Lorne/Fred? I don't think I've ever seen it, but it might work. :noidea: I've written weirder combos.

DeepBlueJoy
22-04-18, 12:19 AM
Character>story>ship.

I tend to read & write lots of crossovers for this reason. Love to explore how characters from various fandom function and interact & improve each others' universe, especially when you add a touch of the buffyverse special sauce. Love when there is a problem to solve, world to save - things that grow and show character.

I tend to read mostly spuffy, but write a variety of mostly crossover character ships.

Favorite ships I have written include:

Drusilla & Patrick Debreno, an ex priest (minor character, the District)

Buffy & Dan Scott, yes, that Dan Scott (One Tree Hill)

Buffy & Teal'c (Stargate SG1)


Same story: (NCIS LA, Harry Potter, NCIS, others)
Xander & Angel
And...
Faith; G Callen - daughter, father

Same story: (House, Quincy, others)
Cordelia & Gregory House
Willow & Wesley
Xander & Dawn
Faith & Wood
And...
Xander; Gregory House, Quincy - son, father, grandfather


Note: Ampersand - & denotes ship, semicolon - ; denotes familial relationships

bespangled
22-04-18, 05:06 AM
Character>story>ship - I like this.

I tend to read a lot of Spike - and my OTP is Spangel just because those two will live a lot longer than any of the humans. I read a vignette recently of Spike and Angel's watching Connor's great-grands playing in the park. If you know each other for centuries even if you spend a liftime with someone else, you will always have a place with the other.

Mostly I read stories that are well written and character driven. I am not big on schmoop, love humor - but what I want is to be immersed. That said - I've read Spike with damn near everyone. Spuffy & Spangel as I've said, Spike/Giles. Spike/Wesley and Spike/Xander. Those are my regulars. I've read Spike/Ethan, Spike/Lilah, Spike/Faith, Spike/Willow and Spike/Tara. There is one Spike/Dawn I liked - extraordinary circumstances - end of the world, everyone else dead, Spike rescued Dawn who had been taken and abused by a group of men. I don't ship him with everyone, and there doesn't have to be sex - I just like two character juxtaposed in a personal way that the show never explored. My favorite Xover is Spike/Dean Winchester.

The other stories I love are gen - no pairing. Overall, I like long stories with lots of twists and turns.

Silver1
22-04-18, 06:50 AM
Got to admit I never saw the appeal of show crossovers in fanfic. They just grate to me. Don't know why.

Sosa lola
22-04-18, 11:36 AM
Character > Ship. That's why I stopped reading fanfic.

How about gen fics? Where the focus is on one character and not the ships.

Stoney
22-04-18, 02:39 PM
Spike's my favourite character so how he is presented in stories against his canon characterisation does tend to stand out to me. I prefer to read things that are canon compatible or go off on a tangent before aspects of his journey the writer wants to change. It tends to bug me to see major points ditched/rewritten after they've happened as it feels to be about the writer wanting to openly correct where the show took the character. I love his canon arc so that sense of wanting to 'undo' what happened after, to make the point that canon was 'wrong', kinda irritates me. If a writer wants to explore unsouled Spike I'd rather read that pre S6 and SR. I don't like to read how he was wrong to get the soul, didn't need it, or how S6 was about Buffy's lack of appreciation of him after those events have occurred. So Spike's characterisation and how the tangents are used against his overall arc are things I really notice in the fics I read, and can greatly affect how much I enjoy them.

But it's also true that I tend to read fanfics to read Spuffy specifically. So I'd say both character and ship matter to me. I don't very often read stories with other romantic pairings for Spike but I would. My biggest hurdle there though is that I personally think very few pairings with existing show characters work very believably for Spike's canon characterisation and existing dynamics. So if I'm not reading Spuffy I prefer to read Spike with original characters for romance. Although as I read for Spuffy where I've thought a Spike/OC pairing works well it still won't tend to be the ship the fic ends with. I'm very open to reading Spike in non-romance based fics too though, fics which focus on his friendships/non-romance dynamics with the existing show characters. For example, I'm a total sucker for a good Spike/Dawn friendship fic. But most fics seem to be romance/ship focused from what I've seen. I'd definitely be very open for reading more Spike fics which aren't about ships.

Sosa lola
22-04-18, 04:39 PM
For example, I'm a total sucker for a good Spike/Dawn friendship fic. But most fics seem to be romance/ship focused from what I've seen.

I agree. This is my story with Xander/Buffy and Xander/Giles. I wanted friendship fics, but there aren't any. So I sucked it up and read shippie fics, and honestly, they weren't bad. I mean the issues I wanted to be discussed in fic are there in those fics, so I'm happy.

Stoney
22-04-18, 05:04 PM
I agree. This is my story with Xander/Buffy and Xander/Giles. I wanted friendship fics, but there aren't any. So I sucked it up and read shippie fics, and honestly, they weren't bad. I mean the issues I wanted to be discussed in fic are there in those fics, so I'm happy.

I just don't want to read a romantic relationship where I just don't see one working. I can see the argument that some of the interesting aspects of their dynamic in general and/or friendship terms would likely be covered within it but it's the canon characters/verse that I want to consider more of ideally and if it is fundamentally disconnected from that by being hung around a relationship I just can't see happening in canon, well, I'd rather just not read it. It's a shame there aren't more stories that are just general cast/friendship focused. :(

I wonder... are there are any other ships where Spike friendships are often a background aspect of the story that people have noticed??? So, does the Giles/Spike dynamic, or Spike/Dawn one get explored often as a side to Willow/Tara stories??? If another ship would give me good Spike friendships/general dynamic exploration I could totally get into reading another ship for that aspect being in there too.

Sosa lola
22-04-18, 07:37 PM
I just don't want to read a romantic relationship where I just don't see one working. I can see the argument that some of the interesting aspects of their dynamic in general and/or friendship terms would likely be covered within it but it's the canon characters/verse that I want to consider more of ideally and if it is fundamentally disconnected from that by being hung around a relationship I just can't see happening in canon, well, I'd rather just not read it. It's a shame there aren't more stories that are just general cast/friendship focused. :(

I wonder... are there are any other ships where Spike friendships are often a background aspect of the story that people have noticed??? So, does the Giles/Spike dynamic, or Spike/Dawn one get explored often as a side to Willow/Tara stories??? If another ship would give me good Spike friendships/general dynamic exploration I could totally get into reading another ship for that aspect being in there too.


All About Spike (http://www.allaboutspike.com/pairing.html) has a list of friendship fics. Just click on the links with & like Spike & Xander, Spike & Oz, those are platonic and not shippie.

Stoney
22-04-18, 07:44 PM
All About Spike (http://www.allaboutspike.com/pairing.html) has a list of friendship fics. Just click on the links with & like Spike & Xander, Spike & Oz, those are platonic and not shippie.

Ah that's great Sosa thank you!! Often my favourite Spuffy stories have been ones where friendships are written in and develop well between Spike and others (often Xander), it's a delightful break sometimes from the scoobie bashing that can occur. I'm definitely going to check those out. :nod:

EDIT: I've just looked and there are so many with the &, it's fantastic. How can I have not registered that this was a searchable thing!! I can see I've read a good number of them at a glance but I'm sure it is going to give me more to look through. Damn, now I'm going to struggle to get everything else done that I'm supposed to be doing. :lol:

Rebcake
22-04-18, 09:26 PM
All About Spike (http://www.allaboutspike.com/pairing.html) has a list of friendship fics. Just click on the links with & like Spike & Xander, Spike & Oz, those are platonic and not shippie.

All About Spike is a treasure. I still mourn the JustRewards.com site, which had every sort of pairing and non-pairing, but was almost all award-winning fic. I'm hoping that AO3 will adopt it at some point.

bespangled
22-04-18, 10:57 PM
All About Spike is a treasure. I still mourn the JustRewards.com site, which had every sort of pairing and non-pairing, but was almost all award-winning fic. I'm hoping that AO3 will adopt it at some point.

That one wasn't fully integrated by the Wayback - I could get the first page of stories and that's it. I rally miss that site!

Double Dutchess
22-04-18, 11:27 PM
Character>story>ship.

I tend to read & write lots of crossovers for this reason. Love to explore how characters from various fandom function and interact & improve each others' universe, especially when you add a touch of the buffyverse special sauce.


Got to admit I never saw the appeal of show crossovers in fanfic. They just grate to me. Don't know why.

I like crossovers well enough, but I seldom read them. I don't watch much TV and it's no fun reading a crossover if you don't know the show the crossover is with. For example, of all the movies/shows mentioned by DeepBlueJoy, Harry Potter is the only one I've seen besides Buffy...

DeepBlueJoy
23-04-18, 02:08 AM
I like crossovers well enough, but I seldom read them. I don't watch much TV and it's no fun reading a crossover if you don't know the show the crossover is with. For example, of all the movies/shows mentioned by DeepBlueJoy, Harry Potter is the only one I've seen besides Buffy...

I pretty much hate when writers 'assume I know the show' -- even if the show is Buffy. I don't enjoy it much if they mostly create a vehicle for 'hooking up' whichever pairing they like... I like it when people write and explore the characters, and create adventures.

The best crossovers are written so the characters are developed properly -- not just placeholder in name only characters. That means, even if you haven't seen the universe, you will be able to follow and enjoy the story. The best ones are like reading a book -- with fleshed out, well develop characters. Of course, it will resonate better if you've seen the series, because if you develop the characters properly, a fan will recognize them.

I find that crossovers have an infinite variability to them, and too many non-crossovers, tend to focus on coupling up, and over time, they tend to have a sameness. I get excited when I can put Buffy or Xander or Dru etc. into some unique situation.

In crossovers, you have so much material to work with, and as new shows come on, you find new opportunities to explore your favorite characters.

I like adventures... yarns that go in unexpected places... currently, one of my stories is about to magically use the Stargate to head over to the senior partner's dimension... Another story involved them working with old man Quincy (consulting ME, retired) AND the cast of Criminal minds to take down a sex trafficking ring... that used magic to hide. I may know how my stories will end, but even I don't know where they'll go as I write. It's like life... you never know who you'll meet...

I will tell you this, having Harry Potter punch Ethan Rayne is very satisfying!

I am never bored. :D

Since I know and love the Buffyverse the best, most of my stories focus more on Buffyverse characters... but I also get to know new worlds.

My first excursions into fan fiction was reading continuing seasons that appeared right after the Angel series went off the air. Some were amazing, and most were better than the comics, IMO, and more true to the characters... but eventually, I found Twisting the Hellmouth, and I was hooked...

Other than crossovers, mostly I read Spuffy stories. I find that pairing the most satisfying... and it makes the most sense. It was the one thread in both series that didn't get tied up satisfactorily for me.



Blue

PS: I started a crossover lovers group -- feel free to join if you are interested!

Fool for Buffy
23-04-18, 02:24 AM
I am definitely far more attached to characters than ships. I don't read a lot of fanfic but I don't care about pairings as long as they honor the characters. In general I only grow attached to ships when I think it is best for the characters. As the series and comics progressed I felt Spuffy grew more and more to be what was best for Spike and Buffy.

bespangled
23-04-18, 07:20 AM
I generally don't go for crossovers since the worlds seldom seem compatible. No idea how I ran into Spike and Dean, but the worlds work and I know the characters.

I have some really good Spike & Dawn links if you're interested. Most of the fic I like has a pairing where the focus isn't on the realtionship, or the relationship isn't that kind of relationship. I'm a big fan of the Dead!Giles universe :D

SpuffyGlitz
23-04-18, 09:31 AM
When I first started watching (and even today), I still prioritise character of Buffy more than any other considerations, including shipping. Because I'm most invested in her trials and victories as a character, and I identified with her the most growing up. I didn't watch Buffy for romance, like I did other shows (Roswell being one example.)

When it comes to fanfiction (which I admit I haven't read much of so far), I'd prefer reading fiction about romance/ love rather than major dramatic journeys, because reading about Buffy's character's journey in writing would be pretty dull, compared to watching it acted out on the show, for me. So fanfiction for me serves to fill in the 'what-ifs' and offscreen moments and thoughts one doesn't get to see on the show. For this reason, it seems best suited for exploring romantic relationships and to me, that's always Buffy-Spike, so I'd probably choose a Spuffy fanfic over any other.

If there was a really well written character study of Buffy/ Spike/ Willow/ Xander or her life/their lives, I would probably read it -- but it still wouldn't come close to actually watching it onscreen (and it might over-concretise stuff, without leaving room for interpretation of motives/actions like when watching.)

Stoney
23-04-18, 10:12 AM
I have some really good Spike & Dawn links if you're interested. Most of the fic I like has a pairing where the focus isn't on the realtionship, or the relationship isn't that kind of relationship. I'm a big fan of the Dead!Giles universe :D

I've probably read more stories with a Spike & Dawn friendship explored than other friendship and non-romance dynamics with Spike just because I love reading Spike & Dawn so I've probably more deliberately sought them. So yes, I'd always welcome more recs that look at them together please. :biggrin1: Any stories that have good friendship/non-romance explorations for Spike would be interesting, I really will have a good look through the All About Spike site which I'd just never registered had non-romance noted, duh. I've no idea what the Dead!Giles universe is, is he vamped in it? Giles & Spike friendships would certainly also be interesting. Any great non-romance ones basically. :p

Priceless
23-04-18, 10:18 AM
When it comes to fanfiction (which I admit I haven't read much of so far), I'd prefer reading fiction about romance/ love rather than major dramatic journeys, because reading about Buffy's character's journey in writing would be pretty dull, compared to watching it acted out on the show, for me.

This is pretty much how I feel too. I find the big adventurous fics a bit dull. I don't want to read three pages about battles and fighting and why they must get a particular doo-dad to save Xander's life etc. etc.. I must admit I gave up on Harry Potter because those sort of stories/journeys don't interest me. I'd much rather have those small romantic stories and the snarky Buffy/Spike conversations, I find them much more entertaining and revealing.

bespangled
23-04-18, 10:20 AM
I'll put some recs in the fanfic rec thread tomorrow, okay. I don't want to drive this on too far off topic.

Nope - Giles isn't a vampire, he's dead...cremated in fact. He's only alive in Spike's mind...sorta like a katra. It's a great series. Go No More A-Roving is the first story. You also might want to check out If Strangers Meet.

I just linked it in the Classic Buffy Pairing thread for the non Spuffy and Bangel stories.

Stoney
23-04-18, 11:53 AM
I'll put some recs in the fanfic rec thread tomorrow, okay. I don't want to drive this on too far off topic.

Okay thanks for that.


Nope - Giles isn't a vampire, he's dead...cremated in fact. He's only alive in Spike's mind...sorta like a katra. It's a great series. Go No More A-Roving is the first story. You also might want to check out If Strangers Meet.

I just linked it in the Classic Buffy Pairing thread for the non Spuffy and Bangel stories.

From just looking at the summaries/pairings of the Giles fics they go into a romance/sexual relationship and I'm just not up for reading a Spike/Giles romance at all. Just friendship or exploration of their existing canon dynamic, it's the Spike romance pairings I was trying to avoid. No worries, I'll check out the stories on All About Spike that aren't romance and I'll look out for the Spike & Dawn friendship recs. As you say, I don't want to keep throwing this thread off topic in my hunt for characterisation without shipping. :p

Rebcake
23-04-18, 09:49 PM
I've no idea what the Dead!Giles universe is, is he vamped in it? Giles & Spike friendships would certainly also be interesting. Any great non-romance ones basically. :p

I've got a vamped!Giles & Spike friendship story for you: Vampyre! (https://capitano-fic.livejournal.com/15048.html) by il_mio_capitano. (The exclamation point sort of gives away some things.) Enjoy!

SpuffyGlitz
09-04-19, 01:52 AM
Just re-visiting this thread after having read way more fanfic than when I first posted here!

I'd say for me in terms of fanfic preference: it's ship>canon compatibility>character, mostly because I read fanfic for Spuffy and nothing else (occasionally also for friendship moments/ offscreen scenes/ ships like Woz/Tillow/Coriander.) My favourite character is Buffy, tied with Spike, and I'd love to read a character study of her, but it would have to be compliant with canon for me to enjoy it. I don't enjoy reading fics of either Spike or Buffy paired with anyone else (maybe temporarily if they're non-canon characters but I prefer not to read them unless they're exceptionally well written and feel plausible/ canon compliant.)

For non-shipping related character exploration, I turn to academic essays / Buffy scholarship for understanding the episodes deeper and motivations/ themes/ arcs better. Fanfic character studies (imo) can easily run into bias towards favourite characters, being too narrowly focused on a favourite to be objective, which again runs into issues with canon, so I don't turn to fanfiction as a reliable resource for character exploration, I read it mainly for shipping.