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Thread: Are you a ship fan or a character fan?

  1. #21
    Moderator Sosa lola's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stoney View Post
    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 has a list of friendship fics. Just click on the links with & like Spike & Xander, Spike & Oz, those are platonic and not shippie.
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  3. #22
    Well Spiked Stoney's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sosa lola View Post
    All About Spike 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.

    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.
    Last edited by Stoney; 22-04-18 at 07:51 PM.

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  5. #23
    Library Researcher Rebcake's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sosa lola View Post
    All About Spike 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.
    Weird love is better than no love Buffy Summers

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    Scooby Gang bespangled's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rebcake View Post
    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!
    Bottom line is, even if you see them coming, you're not ready for the big moments...The big moments are gonna come, you can't help that. It's what you do afterwards that counts. That's when you find out who you are.

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    Scooby Gang Double Dutchess's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeepBlueJoy View Post
    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.
    Quote Originally Posted by Silver1 View Post
    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...

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  10. #26
    Library Researcher DeepBlueJoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Dutchess View Post
    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.

    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.



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

  11. #27
    Bronze Party-Goer Fool for Buffy's Avatar
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    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.
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    Scooby Gang bespangled's Avatar
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    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
    Bottom line is, even if you see them coming, you're not ready for the big moments...The big moments are gonna come, you can't help that. It's what you do afterwards that counts. That's when you find out who you are.

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    Scooby Gang SpuffyGlitz's Avatar
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    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.)
    Last edited by SpuffyGlitz; 23-04-18 at 09:33 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by bespangled View Post
    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
    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. 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.

  18. #31
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    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.

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    Scooby Gang bespangled's Avatar
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    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.
    Last edited by bespangled; 23-04-18 at 10:25 AM.
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  22. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by bespangled View Post
    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.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stoney View Post
    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.
    I've got a vamped!Giles & Spike friendship story for you: Vampyre! by il_mio_capitano. (The exclamation point sort of gives away some things.) Enjoy!
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    Scooby Gang SpuffyGlitz's Avatar
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    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.
    Last edited by SpuffyGlitz; 09-04-19 at 02:51 AM.
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