hey story time: supernatural was supposed to be about sam winchester. sam winchester, main character, his brother dean the background comic relief to break up the tension. problem is, jensen ackles is an incredible actor, and that quickly turned around.
i have always watched the show for dean winchester because the characters i tend to care about the most are his kind of characters—self loathing, sarcastic, protective, a whole travelling circus’ worth of baggage, and just barely-concealed heart. the drier, more moralistic, less jaded protagonist doesn’t move me like that. and you know what? that’s okay. it’s fine that i watched supernatural for seven and a half seasons for dean winchester, and my appreciation for sam, or jared padalecki’s acting, went up and down depending on his character arcs. i don’t have to be ashamed about that.
jared padalecki has never in nine seasons accused dean fans of watching the show for the wrong reasons. according to some arguments i’ve seen in the past day, he has and had every right to. he gave the show his all and jensen stole his way into the spotlight anyway. made sam the smaller silhouette on the dvd box covers, in the posters.
and then misha came along and whoa did he pick up a following. and yes, that stole yet more spotlight from sam and jared. and yes, on tumblr, most supernatural posts i see are destiel, and most destiel art and fics don’t feature sam as the title character.
and you know what? that’s fine too.
yeah, i’d get it if jared was disappointed at being sidelined by the guy who was supposed to be his backup and the guy who wasn’t supposed to outlast a season. but i have never once heard him complain about it, much less call destiel fans twisted and weird, or even say that people watching the show for destiel are watching for the wrong reason.
and you know what? past season six, i was watching for destiel. i needed some kind of hope of some kind of eventual relief for the character who seemed to literally never catch a break. i sure as hell wasn’t watching for the female characters who got left behind, killed, or had their memories wiped. i wasn’t watching expecting dean to find any kind of happiness outside his little homemade family, so that’s what i was watching for.
i came into the teen wolf fandom through tumblr, through sterek. through the shippers saying this show was different, saying jeff had said if there was enough interest, hoechlin had said 50/50 chance, saying it’s practically canon already, saying this is gonna be the show where we don’t get ridiculed for shipping who we ship, where maybe for once we’re right rather than crazy fans with their crazy delusional disgusting wet dreams. i came into the teen wolf fandom, and the sterek fandom, because i was tired of being a joke, and for once, i wanted to be the one laughing.
i’m not nearly as optimistic these days about canonicity, but these characters are my heart and soul now, and once again, realizing stiles’ love interests drop like flies and derek’s don’t seem to care much about consent and nobody in this story is getting any kind of happy ending, i cling to the idea of these two characters taking the slow-built trust and connection that’s been developing over three seasons to find their own kind of happiness, even if the rest of their life stays hellish. back in season 2 i wanted the whole thing, the made family, ohana means pack means no one gets left behind, most like the episode raving, everyone pulling together, derek saving scott and sending boyd to safety, stiles erica and isaac handling the motw like a team, hell i wanted allison and lydia in there too, that was the dream. (that’s still the dream fanon is beautiful and no one can take it away from me uwu) and then i watched twelve episodes where that was destroyed, and fanon and sterek were the fucking life rafts through character deaths and quality drops and everything panning out to equal nothing. if not for sterek? hell yeah i’d’ve stopped watching that clusterfuck.
the quality has gone up again in 3b which is great. there’s kira who i love, dark!stiles which is painful and brilliantly acted, lydia finding her footing, a big bad who actually has a motive, scott and stiles’ relationship, stilinski family feels, melissa mccall who is an actual real-life perfect person, there’s a lot of good here. but i still care about, still want sterek, keep asking for some basic both-in-the-same-room interaction. you know why?
because there’s been a complete drought.
there have been fewer emotional derek scenes in general in 3b, and you know what derek fans say after each one? “needs more derek.” that’s not dismissing the rest of the show, or only watching for derek, that’s saying why aren’t we seeing the conversation he had with his mother, what surely could have been one of those beautiful horrible tearjerker scenes jeff loves so much? why aren’t we seeing him deal with losing his sister so soon after he found her again? why aren’t we seeing him do just about anything but tortureporn and dry exposition?
and those questions don’t mean we’re not appreciating or valuing the rest of the show. they just mean we see a sudden dropoff in emotional continuity for this character, and we want more of them. we want more of this thing we like, we’re satisfied with almost everything else, so we’re not as vocal about those things.
i watch a lot of television, and one show i really love is called the fosters. i love just about every part of it, but i barely make posts about it at all, because everything’s already been done for me. when i make a post about wanting more derek, or more subtle scenes from scott’s perspective, it’s because i’m filling a gap in what i want from the show with fandom. not because those are the only things i care about. sterek is the same way.
and hey, you don’t have to read my fic, you don’t have to like the ship, you don’t have to like what i’m saying. but i came to the teen wolf fandom because i wanted a safe space, and it largely became that, and now people are feeling guilty for these same feelings and others, for liking a thing they like that makes them happy.
i’m a lesbian born and raised in the world of ultra-orthodox judaism. my father pretends i’m going to turn around and marry a nice religious guy some day, and my mother has made it clear that if she finds out i have a relationship, i’m pretty much excommunicated. i expect to be a punchline in my community, to be raised eyebrows and cold shoulders and called crazy, called weird, called whatever the fuck, i watch teen wolf because it’s a homophobia free world and the cast is a gift and that was what sucked me in besides sterek, after sterek, with sterek, and i’m sorry, but i have a hard time believing anyone would use the words “twisted and weird” to refer to a heterosexual couple. but hey, maybe i’m just sensitive.
i left the supernatural fandom mid season seven, after the fangirl representation, becky,’s mind control-fueled-wedding to sam. i was tired, as a fan and a girl, of feeling like the punchline in a joke i was keeping on the air.
there are so many things i still love about teen wolf, but that sting hurts worse every time, and i’m tired of coming away defensive and exhausted from a thing that used to make me happy, so as much as i may understand posey’s frustration, i can’t handwave his comments away so easily, and it’s difficult to see people i respect say that i have to.