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[personal profile] reenka
You know, before I spent too long in fandom, I had squicks. Now I just have preferences and a whole lot of pet-peeves, where it's just that you'd have to work harder to please me if I've a peeve about it. Like, y'know, I remember in the good old days, where Kirk/Spock sex pretty much squicked me, even if I liked the idea of the pairing a lot; I couldn't get over my adolescent vision of them. I remember when Ron/Draco and Snape/Draco and even Harry/Hermione seemed Deeply Wrong... and now I just don't prefer them. I remember when H/D was the alpha and omega of my fannish universe and I had all these ideas about how it 'should' and 'shouldn't' be done (and okay, I still have those), but I've become quite lax about thumping my chest and hyperventilating, alas.

Anyway, I meant to talk about a specific comment in this Wincest squick post, but it also made me think a bit, 'cause yeah, the sheer prevalence of that reading of a show's canon bothers me a bit-- though that's my 'canon, bitches!' thing, not any anti-incest squick, exactly; actually, I don't think I've ever had a 'traditional' squick in the sense that it's based on my real-life beliefs (I mean, I tend to like characters in fiction I'd probably clobber in real life, for a start). Like, if it's well-written, anything challenging or transgressive can only make the story more interesting, as far as I'm concerned; for examples, look to the many instances of incest in classic literature and also some of the best genre lit of today (okay, mainly Song of Ice and Fire). I cannot imagine seriously reading something good and then stopping and going, 'but this is WRONG, HOW COULD THIS BE??! NOOOoooo'. If I really felt like that, I mean, I wouldn't have graduated from books for toddlers, because isn't there always something unpleasant and 'wrong' and unfair even in (good and/or classic) children's books?

    (Btw, this is where some of my friends woujd just say I'm not a critical enough reader, so I clearly suck. Hehe. Because yeah, while I was careful to say 'well-written' and 'good' stories, the truth is I also suspend a lot of judgment/personal issues/disbelief when reading stuff I just... like a lot for whatever reason. I wouldn't call it a 'kink'; like, I don't have a 'kink' for HP canon, y'know? Most of the time the only reason I'm critical is when I either really love something or really hate it, usually because of aesthetic/story-construction reasons. This mostly applies to stuff that's really bad. How do I explain it. It applies to purple-prosey fantasy books with ass-stupid names & the majority of post-OoTP fanfic I read, hahaha; it very rarely applies to content, in other words, and only to execution-- the big exception being OOCness in fic and stuff I find relentlessly bleak. Because I'm a huge romantic dork. But I try to keep that under control. :P So yeah, it's a personality issue, basically, and one I can't really do anything about, so nyah.)

In any case, I'm veeeery touchy about actually projecting slashiness on any canon... and in fact I can't think of any where I would do so with all honesty. There's liminal cases like Star Trek, The Sentinel and Gundam Wing, but I wouldn't go so far as to explain anything that happened with the characters through that lens. It's just subtext, take it or leave it.

Aaanyway. It's funny because I have the exact opposite reaction-- usually if something squicks me in text/theory, it squicks me less in a visual representation, because I'm more of an aesthete-- I always look at art as an 'art piece' first and a 'statement' second; in other words, I can easily disengage any moral/ethical/other biases and just enjoy the pretty because pretty is what matters with visual media to me. This is why I have no hard pairing preference with fanart, for instance, and why I tolerate and enjoy extreme cheesiness in fanvids of the sort that'd make me run screaming from a fic.
    Coincidentally, it's also why the 6A/LJ wank sticks in my craw like mad. It's really the art-critique aspect that drives me mad, the double-standard where fanfic is okay but fanart isn't-- fanart needs to be judged by outsiders who don't have the first clue what they're looking at. That just drives me mad. Visual art just... the idea of judging it in such pedestrian terms without even realizing that's what you're doing-- it makes my blood boil.

Regardless, I meant to just quote [ profile] harriet_spy's comment:
    To be honest, there's no way you can take a dynamic that hinges even a little bit on transgressiveness, have ten thousand squeeing fangirls stampede over it, and have anything left but flatness.

I just thought that was really... very true. And it really applies to some of my favorite pairings (*cough!*) rather than just Wincest. It's not that I hate fluff... it's that I'm just so bored & frustrated by the sheer glut of narratives that make the transgressive and raw as acceptable and 'easy' as possible. Actually, the reason I wouldn't ship Wincest is probably because you can't reasonably expect it to be remotely healthy or resolvable in any positive way-- and I'm still a romantic. It's kinda figures that the incest is intinsically everyone's problem, but yeah. This definitely reminds of the sheer flatness I felt before I stopped reading H/D altogether; this sense that the pairing has become... completely predictable and 'easy' (in fandom, not in canon). I can't really think of a transgressive pairing that actually consistently captured its own problematic areas... which is why I'm really way too wary to read S/L, but oh well.

Date: 2007-08-22 09:25 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
You're too wary to read Snape/Lucius?

Date: 2007-08-22 09:31 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
That too, of course >:D Although honestly I'd be wary kind of for a different reason :))

Date: 2007-08-22 09:57 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Snape/Lucius is such a fluff-fest. There are some amazing fics out there, but mostly it has the emotional tension of a water chestnut. Worse yet, it's filled with stuff that even squicks *me* out. Fluff + kink = THE WRONGEST COMBINATION.

I still have no idea who you're talking about with S/L, though.

I'm just so bored & frustrated by the sheer glut of narratives that make the transgressive and raw as acceptable and 'easy' as possible.

Well, that's always the problem, whether it be Snape/Lucius kinksex or Snape-mentoring-Harry gen. There's still good stuff out there, though.

Date: 2007-08-22 10:10 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]

...The idea of fluffy!Snape/Lucius breaks my brain, kinda. o_0 Whut. I can't even imagine it, seriously. I always stayed away 'cause it's so oooobviously gonna be written as dark & twisted with a kinky cherry on top, but this is somehow worse :> Although I'm not sure what sorta dynamic I'd like Snape/Lucius to have... mostly it's like Ron/Snape in that I've no idea what I'd do with it, myself. Probably 'cause I never know what to do with either Lucius or Snape, haha.

And you're right. I mean, normally this doesn't bother me as much until the fangirl squee totally wears off and I become bitter, 'cause before then I'm all about the good emotionally-charged writing, which tends to have some rawness even if it's not about the right things or what have you, I guess :> Or perhaps I may supply the emotional rawness from the reader side; this definitely happens when I go back to look at a fic I loved and obsessed over and find it flat and dull.

Date: 2007-08-22 10:24 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
This definitely happens when I go back to look at a fic I loved and obsessed over and find it flat and dull.

Hmmm. But you've liked a lot of fics I think are crap. So maybe it's just that you're realizing they're crap? >:D


I sentence you to write it out 100x by hand. None of these dreadful portmanteau names or ambiguous initials for you!

I feel like I've read a lot of Snape/Lily because of all the Severitus fic I read. I don't find it all that interesting; mostly, I suppose, because I don't find Lily interesting. Then again, it takes a lot for me to find het ships in HP interesting. (You should read my Sirius/Bellatrix, though, because I'm really happy with that one.)

I've read Marauders-era Snape/Lucius in which Snape was sort of bullied/overawed by Lucius's age advantage, wealth, and general gorgeousness. Those were actually really good. But mostly Snape/Lucius tends to be the two of them meeting at Malfoy Manor, talking Slytherin strategy over brandy snifters, and then knocking boots. Boring. That's not a story, unless you're posting at

I'm overtired and not making much sense. :/

Date: 2007-08-22 10:36 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
It probably is. This is why I don't actually tend to reread things on principle :> It's traumatic to realize most of what I'd loved isn't so good after all, haha.

I just like being perverse with the uh, Snape/Lily. And mostly I find it interesting from the Snape side, not the Lily side-- Lily is just the convenient tool to get Snape to be... the way he is. :> My problem with a lot of Snape pairings is that in my (limited) experience they tend to revolve around Snape being snarky and more-self-controlled-than-thou and putting whoever it is in their place or something. And here is a pairing where he angsts, yearns, is desperate and needy and stupid. YES. :D The Lily is really more absent than present in S/L-- she exists as his obsessive gothic-style image of the Heroine in the White Dress, know what I mean? The angsty broody dark Byronic anti-hero and his lost pure-hearted love, etcetc YES I AM A SUCKER :D But my interest in Snape the self-controll Master of Slytherin is just so close to 'meh' that I take anything I can get :>

And y'know, that's almost exactly how I pictured Snucius. Heeeeeeeee. >:D

Date: 2007-08-22 11:42 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I'm happy with your Sirius/Bellatrix too! I love it a lot!

Reena, I don't even understand how you still like my old H/D when I hate it to death (har har). The shortlist of fics I still love and obsess over is like, ten long :|

Date: 2007-08-23 01:36 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Are you talking about Transformation? Still-Life? Those are in my top-ten, no question!

And I'm so glad you liked the Sirius/Bellatrix! ♥ I just printed it out and read it again a couple of days ago, so it's fresh in my mind.

(It's good seeing you around ... I was worried you were going to leave us forever!)

Date: 2007-08-23 03:51 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I'm talking about things that I seriously hope you never read, like "Glass and Death and Rose Petals" and uh, "Absence," etc. But your top ten! Really! I am shocked but pleased :">

I have a feeling I will always be around on the edges, since I am sure fandom will always have a place in my heart (one where a lot of blood doesn't flow, but still . . .)

Date: 2007-08-23 06:17 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
It's your writing... it was dizzy and metaphor-drunk and in love with language, the sounds of words. I know that feeling, and it always carries me away. There's also personal identification with the emotions-- the melancholy, the wistfulness, the yearning, the soft shady places where we quietly fall apart and disintegrate back into sunlight. I dunno. It was very visual, just like my writing naturally is (before I tried to 'fix it'). I don't think it was ever the H/D, per se. It was always the aesthetic, y'know? I think.

Date: 2007-08-23 02:25 pm (UTC)
ext_6866: (Don't know yet)
From: [identity profile]
Well, that's always the problem, whether it be Snape/Lucius kinksex or Snape-mentoring-Harry gen. There's still good stuff out there, though.

That's totally it!

I mean, even when it comes to "that's so wrong" or not, even if you don't like something because you don't like "what it says" it's probably the way it says it. Often I think it's a question of feeling like the author doesn't really know what they're saying, like a story is patting itself on the back for saying something good when you think it's saying something ridiculous. Where as you might read another story that said the same ridiculous thing but think it's great.

Like what you're saying here about fluff + kink it's like...those two things totally ruin what's good about the other (or what I like about one of the other). It's not really a moral opposition so much as: You're doing it wrong.

Date: 2007-08-23 04:13 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Sometimes I think she means Sirius/Luna.

Date: 2007-08-23 05:50 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Now now, it's not nice to break my brain after playing with it D:


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