January 8th, 2011

Dean/Books OTP

Sexism, Slash...and Man-Hugs

So, first, a couple of links: How to Do Masculinity is a great little article about how sexism (against women) makes men's lives miserable too. It has a bunch of little videos at the end, that are humourous, and my favourite among them is...

How to Give the Perfect Man Hug  - it's on youtube, but embedding is disabled, so you'll have to click the link and watch it on the youtube site. Please watch it! It's awesome! And it sort of makes my following point...

First, some background: I've discussed my feelings on love and slash before on this journal. Mainly that I didn't feel like the addition of sex enhanced a relationship, actually I felt it was the opposite.

So, at some point in December, I decided to watch the new Sherlock series that the BBC did. It is AWESOME...so, naturally I started to devour everything the fandom had to offer - especially Sherlock/John stories, because they are totally the OTP. Anyway, at first, I was totally on the slash bandwagon, and I hated John dating women, and I hated that the creators didn't have the balls to actually keep the characters completely sexually ambiguous.

I started to get annoyed that we live in a day and age where you still can't have a crime-fighting series with two male gay leads (well, unless you're Torchwood and one of your male leads is from the future and would shag anything that breathes).

So, eventually I moved from fanfiction into research and academic-type articles...as is my wont. I read this great article about whether or not the original Sherlock and Watson were gay, and what social perceptions of sexuality were in the 19th century...and it talked about the idea of a romantic friendship, which used to be socially acceptable in the early 1800s, but then wasn't anymore.

And this all lead me back to my original standpoint: Why do we have to have sex with the people we love? Is love without sex somehow lesser than love with sex? 

For instance, think of the idea of soul-mates. I know in Supernatural when it was implied in Heaven that Dean and Sam were soul-mates, there was a flurry of typing as all the Wincest shippers squeed. But, I hate to break it to you, there's no rule that you have to sleep with your soul-mate. If I were to believe in the concept of soul-mates, evidence would indicate that I've already found mine...and I've never slept with them and I never will (as I once told him: We both deserve better). 

Somehow in modern times, we've come to the conclusion that love with sexual attraction is better than love without sexual attraction...that basically, if you aren't having sex with a person, you aren't really in love with them. You just like them a hell of a lot or something.

Anyway, long story short, I'm no longer pissed off that the creators of Sherlock didn't make the two male leads gay or sexually ambiguous enough, I actually think that telling a love story between two heterosexual males is actually MORE subversive in our current culture.

Mark Gatiss, one of the writers, summed it up well when at a recent Q&A, he said: "This is a love story, not a sex story."

I think we all need to learn to separate the two, as well.

(that all being said, I'll probably continue to read Sherlock/John fics - 'cause a girl's got to get her kicks somewhere)

(Also, I just now realized that there's a good chance this is actually one of the themes of my novel - you know, the one I always talk about working on, but instead I keep writing Harry Potter/Supernatural crossovers).