am i going to be notorious for being the one posting controversial stuff?
Before i talk about it first of all I'm merely just stating my opinion, and i respect your opinion too if you guys disagree. I don't mean to offend anyone, I just want to share my opinion.
Alright now that we got all that out of the way.
Recently on dA i've noticed things. Besides the obvious loads of fan characters, there's also fan couples. Maybe it's just me, but I feel like there's been a lot recently. Well on dA people love making fan couples with their fan characters, like two people each have a character and make them a couple and draw them and rp them. And there's nothing wrong with that. Trust me I have been there too, couple years back. I thought it was fun and all, where I get to put my fictional character with someone else's fictional characters and etc.
But then I realized it creates a lot of issues. It creates a lot of drama. And yea I've been there too as well and trust me, things got ugly. Lot's of needless drama and petty arguments. I admit I was sad and angry about what happened and feeling quite down about it.
But then I just was like "whatever lets move on." They're just characters, right? And I got a real life too, and I realized how much more important that was.
My opinion on fan couples now is quite frankly, I think they're pointless. I get it's for fun and all, but all too often I feel like their are several major issues. i have ten ones here.
Issue one: too many characters are created solely for the purpose of being paired with someone else's character. I see this way too often. Click open a deviation and the description says "so-and-so and I wanted to have a pairing, so I created this character!" And I think, where are all those original characters back in the day who actually had depth and dimension? Now I feel like so many characters and created, two-dimensional and flat, just a mere design to be paired with someone else. As if they were just customized to be someone's pair. Like the artist is some pairing generator who bangs out some designs and ships them off like cattle to get paired.
This bothers me, because I see so many new characters randomly appearing and its always like "i wanted to have a pairing so i made this new character!" I mean its great and all with the design but the problem is they lack depth. No backstory no anything they are merely created and shaped to fit the other person's characters wants and needs. So basically they are just manufactured on a factory line just so they can get paired.
You know that's kind of depressing now that I think of it. Imagine someone telling you "You were only brought to existence so you could be ______'s boyfriend/girlfriend." Yikes.
Issue two: It's more about the couple than the characters. Sometimes i feel like so many people just pair for the sake of pairing, This is kinda like issue one but with a subtle difference. Its more like the artists care more about the couple and not the individual participants of the couple ie the characters. Sometimes i feel like the individual characters are completely forgotten and never drawn in a picture without his/her boyfriend/girlfriend. Their identities depend on the couple, almost, as if they have no independent life. Sometimes the individual character is posted only after it is paired, as if the artist were embarassed to not post the character earlier.
And that's sad, really. So many people make couples for the sake of having a couple, not because they actually want it, or because the characters even have ANY chemistry, but because it's the new trend. and the in the process they loose their characters.
Issue three: its kind of like dating. Okay this sounds weird but hear me out. Since a lot of people do rps with their characters, it tends to get kind of.. weird. Since the characters are together and all, the artists have to act like they are the characters and act like the characters are a couple. So they become mawkish and or lovey-dovey and often have sexual scenes.
Which, if you think about it, is deeply disturbing. Because even though it's the two artists using their characters to do these acts, its kind of reminiscent to online dating stuff .-. i mean i've seen some rps and it really makes me feel weird, because they have to do and say things that fit the couple.
Issue four: DRAMA. Okay so, continuing from major issue 3. Since these two artists become so engaged with their couple, there are times when one artist wants to break up the couple (it has happened to me). Logically speaking, both sides should be okay because thye are just characters.. but then it leads to drama. This partially may be because of what i said in issue three: that its kind of like the two artists are the couple, not the characters. its almost as if they, the artists, had broken up. and they start fighting and all that yes i have been there and now when i look back at it i realize how terribly funny it is and how ridiculous we were. because of some petty breakup between fictional characters, we artists feel distress and even "jealousy" when the other character is re-paired? (not repaired, PUN!). Anyway, this all may seem bizarre to people who dont do rps or whatever, but im pretty sure a lot of you know what i mean.
And it's absolutely ridiculous!
I mean take a step back from your computer and just look at these petty fights.. i got entangled in one before, but now that i look at it i laugh and realize how stupid i was. It's literally the smallest thing ever and we act like its the end of the universe. Yet people get so serious about it. And people nowadays still act all "its the end of the world" when a breakup occurs and they get all jealous and mad and protective and defensive and they terminate their friendships because of it etc.
Man seriously people, is it worth it?
Issue five: characters go out of character, and the couple is so fake. Many characters thankfully were created with depth and background, in contrast to major issue one. But then! When they get paired!
Things go terribly wrong
So many characters go terribly out of character once they are paired just so that it would satisfy the couple and the other character's needs. SO many characters have to fit what the other person wants while not getting what the other person wants. It's so sad to watch amazing, deep characters who are aloof and have tragic backstories etc become lovey dovey mushy gushy once they are paired. They are often drawn in scenes where the two romantically kiss etc. or where the characters are totally out of character.
Sigh.... why sacrifice a three dimensional, believable, and relatable character into a character that is a love drone and a flat and two-dimensional person as all paired characters are? And why always make the romance so fake? I see so many couples with such fake romance like love at first sight and where insantly they are in love and im like .-.
Issue six: Showing off. This kind of sounds like issue three. Its like a real couple. Where they show themselves off. Well its not really that different. Couple icons, couple commissions, couple drawings, etc.. flaunting the couple is annoying, period.
Issue seven: Switching around pairs. This one is particularly annoying and it has to do with breakups. Its like, okay if you want to pair then be faithful to each other? I hate crack pairings or like stuff like that and so many times i see deviations of the same character with a different girlfriend/boyfriend like every time. Like they switch every so often. And i think, wow what a player.
Issue eight: always there is a possessive one. There is always one artist which kind of gets everything he/she wants with the other's character but not vice versa. So it's kind of like exploitation, while the other artist is not happy with the relationship but still kinda has to deal with it, either by changing the personality of the character or whatnot.
Issue nine: fan children. (mentally sighing
Okay not like i have anything against children but .. first of all, the child is designed solely to satisfy the couple. Like 'look they haz child!" and the character almost always ends up with a crappy design that looks like someone mashed the parents together, and a shitty, two-dimensional personality that is either mary-sue cute and innocent and loved or whatever. And trust me, fan kids always either:
show both the color schemes (e.g. blue dad, red mom, so blue and red kid. in biology this is codominance by the way)
show an intermediate color scheme (e.g. blue dad, red mom, purple kid. this is incomplete dominance people.)
show some of moms minor colors and some of dads minor colors (e.g. blue dad with yellow stripes, red mom with black streaks, so yellow kid with black spots.)
show the fur color of one parent and the eye color of the other (e.g. dad with blue fur, mom with gray eyes, so kid that is blue with grey eyes)
are a mix of two species (guys.. biology. species= a group of offspring that can mate and produce fertile offspring.. i dont see how a hedgehog and a fox or whatever can have kids)
look exactly like mom if a girl, with dad's color or look exactly like dad, if a boy, with moms color.
Like, zero creativity im serious :I
Issue ten: the couple means more than the friendship. the only time the two artists talk is to rp, and that's it.. so the couples dominate the friendship.
Of course not all of these apply to every fan couple. But this is just my observation. and although i used to do this stuff , (i still have fan couples but they are really really inactive) i realized that really im kind of wasting time .-. because not only do you have to satisfy the other person's character, you also both have to follow a pace you may or may not be comfortable with. and often your character ends up with a whole different personality then originally because of the couple. and then you have a mashed up mishap fan child who just kinda has to be there for the sake of being there. and then the couple means more than the individual characters. and then the other artist breaks up, and you get thrown into ridiculous drama, and then they start switching pairs every week. oh dear, sounds cumbersome.
So my opinion is:
don't pair with random people or random characters or better yet, dont pair your characters with others at all. who knows what type of mess you'll wade in to. i think the best solution is to just pair your own characters with your own characters, like im doing with ember, hourglass, etc ;v; because it makes things so much easier. the characters can have their own conflicts, like any real relationship would, without offending the other artist; the characters can keep their own pace and interact in a way that reflects their personalities, and the characters are spared from heartbreak. And you are spared from drama.
Win-win situation, i guess?
Anyway feel free to comment your opinions below!