shamanicshaymin: Quote from Napstablook from Undertale (Grover :: Monsters)
[personal profile] shamanicshaymin
Remember that one quote by J.K. Rowling? Let me tweak it a bit: "If you want to see the true measure of a man, watch how he treats his NOTP and its shippers, not his OTP and their shippers.

You know what? I've been keeping this bottled for a while. I've spoken with close friends about it, and they made me feel better enormously, so I thought that was the end of that. But I might as well tell you what happened, DW and LJ.

So, there's these two artists who are twins in the Earthbound fandom who draw for an obscure pairing: Jeff/Poo. They've put a lot of thought into their headcanon (Jeff and Poo would eventually raise a couple Mr. Saturns), their art is cute, and their smut is tasteful. Unfortunately, there's a reason I don't follow them on tumblr and separate their art from them as people. And it looks like that reason won't be changing anytime soon.

I guess we'll start from the beginning. One day, I've discovered their tumblrs, and thought, "Oh, Jeff/Poo. Hadn't considered it, but okay. This is cute." Plus they draw a lot of Poo, who isn't nearly as popular as the rest of the characters in the fandom. When I learned they also did decent NSFW art, I was thrilled. You have NO idea how hard it is to find decent smut in Earthbound fandom. A lot of it fetishizes Paula, and it NEVER ages up the characters, which makes me uncomfortable as hell. I'm not into shota/loli at all, but even then, there's something skeevy and offputting about a lot of the art. So I left a note telling them how happy I was and that I looked forward to seeing more of their work. Several days later, all I got in response was a simple "Thank you." That's it. Something about it rubbed me the wrong way, but I chalked it up as me worrying too much and moved on.

One day, one of the artists makes a post that says, "I try to see Tony as a great and possibly interesting character, but the fans make it so hard for me sometimes…" Eventually, she replies to a comment one of their followers left her. Now, here's the important thing; neither of these artists are Jeff/Tony shippers. I knew this fully well before deciding to follow them. 'Cause hey, ship and let ship, right? I decided to throw in my two cents, with the overall message being that I agreed that I didn't like seeing Tony reduced to a gay stereotype. The response was... passive-aggresively explosive.

It was like she saw, "I love Tony and Jeff/Tony" and nothing else. Never mind that I was supporting her view. (Also, fans saying Jeff/Tony is canon and their "Don't break his heart, Jeff!" comments? It's standard joking around and fangirling. I don't think a lot of these people take their own comments seriously, nor do they expect you to) Then I got to the Poo/Paula paragraph (really, what the heck brought that up?) and I felt my blood freeze. 'Cause there's only one Poo/Paula smutfic that I know of, and that's mine. I kept my cool and wrote her a message. Tumbr's a dick and doesn't save copies of my messages, but I'll post what I can. Here's our conversation:

shamanicshaymin said: Regarding the Poo/Paula smut-fic... the only one I can recall that's still online was written by me. :o I've written it several years ago when I had just gotten into the fandom, so looking back on it, I saw some problematic/skeevy content in it that made me cringe, so if it was my fic you were talking about, I'm sorry I ruined the pairing for you. ._.;;; (tbc, damn ask character limit)

Her: Well, yes, it is the one you wrote. Aww, to be honest, your regret makes me feel a lot more comfortable about you. A lot of your fics did hurt me quite a bit. Especially the Jeff/Tony implied-rape-fic with a title very close to one of my personal favorite Sarah McLaughlin songs…

I looked at some of your stuff back from 08/09, and all the ‘sexy-rape’ really creeped me out. I didn’t like the idea of Poo cumming in a suddenly-slutty 12-year-old’s vagina,

i actually rest easier now, knowing that it was mostly young hormones. If it makes you feel any better, I was the exact same way around that time… ^^;

Awkward confessions aside, My opinion of you has definitely changed for the better, and my sister's too. All is forgiven.


Here's the Eeeeeeeevil Jeff/Tony implied-rape-fic and the Eeeeeeeevil Poo/Paula porn, for the ladies and the gentlemen of the jury to judge for themselves.

I'm the last person qualified to defend my own fanfiction. But I feel like I need to clarify a few things:

1. Maybe my writing hadn't been developed enough to make it clear, but I was trying to convey a consensual relationship between two awkward boys just realizing their feelings for each other. Jeff in particular, who is especially awkward and nervous (I meant to convey shyness, not "No, I don't want sex"). Jeff not only pulls Tony closer to himself without any prompting, but Tony was also asking him things like "Are you okay?" "Am I hurting you?" etc. Yeeeeeah, not something a rapist would do unless they were mocking the victim. I just... get the feeling the person didn't even read the entire fic.

2. The Poo/Paulafic was initially an AIM joke with a friend (initially spawned from us fangirling Jeff/Tony, ironically) that turned into an actual story that I later added plot to when it came to editing it for the Internet. Hence the awkward beginning and ending, 'cause it was originally crack between me and a friend making fun of Poo because we loved him.

3. Everybody in my Earthbound smutfics are aged up. I thought I didn't need to clarify this, considering that people don't in Pokemon and Digimon fandom. Even if you didn't know that, the fic makes it explicitly clear that Poo and Paula are not minors.

4. Is it me, or does the "I didn’t like the idea of Poo cumming in a suddenly-slutty 12-year-old’s vagina" read as slightly misogynistic?

I discussed most of these points with her (along with how my experience with the Jeff/Tony fandom was different and I'm sorry she got the ugly side, and she tells me she's got a lot of Jeff/Tony shipper friends so she knows that. Which, in hindsight, reads like "I'm not _____, my best friends are ____!"), and things seem to be going relatively civil:

shamanicshaymin said: I know what you mean about fanfiction tainting a pairing, though. I like Jeff/Paula okay, but I can't stand a lot of the fanfiction because it would have Jeff angsting over Ness hanging out with Paula and there'd be a love triangle with Jeff and Ness fighting over Paula and I can't stand that. So that leaves a bitter taste in my mouth. Sorry for flooding your ask box; I'm using to lengthier replies on LJ and tumblr doesn't allow for a lot of word count. And I love discussing shipping. <.<

Her: Yeah, I see too many people inserting the angry-Ness in the background of Jeff/Paula art as well.

Well, you can rest assured that my Jeff/Paula scenarios don’t end up a total mess. My most recent fantasy regarding Jeff/Paula had to do with Paula drifting away from the other three over time, then returning to find that her feelings about them changed drastically…

…Love triangles aren’t really my thing either ^^;


shamanicshaymin said: I hate love triangles. Haaaaaaaaaaaate. XD I prefer threesomes and moresomes. *shot* But I know that's not everyone's kink. Your Jeff/Paula scenarios make me happy; it's the sort of thing I want to see more of in fic, not all this jealousy and triangle junk. I know when I see yours and your sister's art, it gives me the warm fuzzies.

Her: Aww, thank you so much!

shamanicshaymin said: Finally, I'm glad you and your sister don't see me as a creeper anymore. XDDD;;; I certainly didn't mean to come across that way, and lord knows we've got enough disturbing unshaved bastards living in their mom's basements hanging out on the Internet.

Her: Yeah, I’m sure everyone has that weird phase where they suddenly want to try ALL THE KINKS no matter how fucked up they end up looking in hindsight… >_<

…Personally, I’m just glad that I no longer try to portray rape as ‘sexy’, because now it all seems disgusting to me.


shamanicshaymin said: No kidding. A lot of paranormal romance features a ton of abusive relationships, and they're not even labeled as non-con--the authors think these are romantic relationships everyone should aspire to. A lot of yaoi Anime doesn't appeal to me for the same reason, because it's usually Rapey Seme/Weepy Uke stereotypes. But 50 Shades of Grey has especially cemented my hatred of romanticized abused; how anyone could think of these books as feminist boggles me.

Me: Ugh, I tire of the yaoi stereotypes. I think what got me into Jeff/Poo was the fact that they’re both so independent that they could bring so much into their relationship from either side.

To me it’s very equal and balanced. Unfortunately, everyone seems to want Poo portrayed as a misogynistic self-centered, and sometimes-perverted jock, despite the fact that he is
officially described as ‘humble’ and ‘selfless’.

Unfortunately, my OTP ended up being the one that people feel the most confident & comfortable to bash shamelessly. People try to throw b.s. at me like: “You only ship them because they’re the leftovers of the Chosen 4 after Ness+Paula get together”, and the more recent & the most weirdest so far: “Jeff is like an atheist, and Poo would try to push his customs + religious beliefs on him.”

…Which is… um… no; Jeff would more likely be agnostic (NOT atheist), and at NO point in the game do you see Poo try to keep his friends from eating food other than rice gruel and bottled water, and/or practice the ways of Mu…

…eheheh sorry for the rambling, there’s a lot pent-up in here…


shamanicshaymin said: People... portray Poo... as a misogynistic, self-centered perverted jock. *brb, wandering outside while my brain goes kaboom* WTF fandom!? Poo is like, one of the most selfless characters in the entire cast! If anything, he's the complete OPPOSITE of misogynistic, and treats women as human beings. If he was this much of a perverted womanizer, there's no fucking way the women of Dalaam would love and revere him so much. fjadskfhhdskghdvhcj FANDOOOOOM

Her: Yeah, unfortunately. I think people do it as a way of feigning interest in him, like “There! There’s my Poo headcanon. Happy now?”

It’s like: “Let’s see, I give 0 fucks about this character, so I’m going to give him as many disgusting and reprehensible personality traits as I possibly can! GENIUS!”

Not to mention the fact that some people never shut up about him being a ‘playa’ or having an actual harem, and that he ‘sleeps around’ even though if your royalty, technically you would probably HAVE to avoid contracting any possible STD’s and whatnot…wouldn’t want your ONLY crown prince to die of syphilis.

Also, if he actually HAD a harem, they would be grouped up somewhere in the palace or something, instead of wandering outside freely around their own houses.

Also, Dalaam does not give off a huge oppressive patriarchal vibe. Poo doesn’t have much in comparison to the common folk of Dalaam…


shamanicshaymin said: *deep breaths* Anyway, I've always seen Poo as someone who takes his duties as prince, future king, and one of the Chosen 4 seriously (and he's the most mature of the Chosen 4!), with all thoughts toward saving the world from Giygas. While he's stern and serious, it's also clear he has a soft side and a heart of gold (See: you have the option of playing paddy-cake with one of the Dalaamese kids), which is especially shown as he becomes better friends with the rest of the Chosen 4.

Her: Personally, I like to think that he is often the one who has to remind everyone about what they all have to do…. XD

shamanicshaymin said: Ugh, people are idiots for bullying you for their shipping preferences. :/ And the whole "Poo would push his culture on Jeff!!11", augh. Poo would never do that. I'm neutral on Jeff/Poo myself, but I'd be interested in hearing why you ship them. :) One of the nice things about fandom is the right fanart/fic/discussion/etc. can open you up to new ideas you haven't considered before. I know when I first saw yours and your sister's art, I thought, "Ooh, I hadn't thought of this before. :o"

Her: Aww, thanks!

And yeah, it is a good thing. I’m so glad that I got to talk to you personally, because now I don’t have that pent-up uneasiness anymore. ^^;

I actually started to ship Jeff/Poo as a joke. It was a pretty lame scenario: the whole Ness+Paula thing didn’t work out, leaving Jeff disappointed & depressed, and it ended with Poo shyly admitting “I like you.” To Jeff.

But on a more serious note, As I dug deeper into the nature of the Mother series, I really got into over-analyzing the characters, mainly Poo. I looked at Poo & Jeff’s similarities and differences, and they do kind of balance each other out: Both of them live in rather secluded places, but Poo is under strict and sometimes brutal training, while Jeff practices his talents freely.

Jeff also appears to be experiencing a good deal of self-discovery on their journey; meeting his father for the first time in 10 years, finding new things to build and repair, buying and trying out new weapons from other countries, etc.

Poo, on the other hand, enters the party with a plan. He is fixated on the task at hand: do whatever is necessary to defeat Giygas.

…Although I like to think that he is constantly fighting the urge to stray from the main path while doing so.

I’m also working on a series of illustrations that better describe their relationship later in life, it involves both of them getting stuck in a major rut as they get older. They end up helping each other in ways they never even thought they would.


So, it sounded like things ended on a good note. Unfortunately, she updated her blog not long after with this:

If you want to talk EarthBound with me and/or my sister, it would be best not to mention Jeff/Tony at all.

It’s my NOTP and it has unfortunately reached trigger status to both of us.

Just don’t bring it up, please.


 photo eyetwitch_zps61cd2f97.gif

...All because we had a polite discussion around the ship. I didn't say anything that demeaned her, I didn't say she was stupid for not shipping Jeff/Tony, or anything like that. But nope. The pairing is a "trigger" now. wtf. Thankfully, someone called her out for their careless use of the word, and she apologized and revised her post.

I'm just... baffled by the entire thing. I did my best to be nice, but it looks we're not going to be friends. Not that they seem to want to be anyway. I just hope that some day, they'll stop overreacting to the things they don't like, or it's going to hurt them in the long run. I'm just wondering how on earth they manage to survive on the Internet when even Tony randomly showing up on an unrelated Google search bothers them. How are they going to act if they discover a Jeff/Tony/Poo OT3 art or fic? (And for the record, DON'T make one just to troll them. I will hunt you down, because I WILL NOT tolerate bullying)

tl;dr: I'm a horrible, dirty Jeff/Tony shipper, and putting Tony in art (especially with Jeff) is offensive, because HE'S EVERYWHEEEEEERE OMG.

Anyway, off to feed the campus cats. They'll cheer me up.
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