Hello! Before I start this post I'd like to let you know that I've joined Goodreads, against my better judgment, and am semi-addicted. Here's my page. I'd also like to let you know that this weekend, I'll be posting late, probably on Sunday. My grandmother died last week, and her funeral is Saturday.
Yeah, it's sad. I'm coping, though.
Now. Those of you who are familiar with me and my work know that I am a terrible, terrible romantic in basically every sense of the word, and tend to weave that in very tightly with my novels. I even won a gag title in a character contest some young writers were having, "Most Romantically Inclined"- my characters didn't win it, I did.
I already wrote a post, a long time ago, about how to write romance. Now I'm going to tell you about some of my favorite romances and love stories, most of which you are probably familiar with.
*Spoilers ahoy* *For an updated list of my favorite fictional relationships, check out this post.*
Ron and Hermione, Harry Potter
Now, it would be natural for me to start here, not only because Harry Potter is my fandom, but because Ron and Hermione were the first couple I ever shipped. Good old Harry Potter, introducing me to the world of crazy people obsessed over fictional characters. From the beginning of the series, I was positive they were going to end up together. Nothing says love like fighting and trolls.
I love Ron and Hermione (also known as Romione or Heron) firstly because of how much they fight. Some of the best couples in fiction fight all the time, and it's just perfect, because through all their differences, they're able to really communicate. Ron and Hermione balance each other out, as different as they are, but they also have so many commonalities, in the traits that made them both Gryffindors and friends with with Harry.
Ron and Hermione also represent, respectively, the male and female fighters of the overarching war against evil that directs epic fantasies like Harry Potter. Ron depicts a number of masculine traits, while Hermione shows many obvious feminine traits. As the best friends of the central character, the hero, Harry, they become humanity's representatives within the story, elevating normal people to a direct standard. This makes it natural for their romance to bloom as it did, male and female together.
So, basically, they rock.
Katniss and Peeta from The Hunger Games
I was always quite fierce about this ship, which goes by the name Everlark. Basically as soon as I met Peeta, I was a goner. Probably half the reason I'm so fierce about this ship is that I want to marry Peeta myself. I mean, he's perfect. How can you not love him?
But in all honesty, Katniss and Peeta make a great couple.
Now, I know some people get annoyed when Hunger Gamers start shipping people, because the main concepts of the book are much deeper than just a love triangle. I recognize that, but nonetheless, I am a super fan of Everlark. Everlark itself plays a part in the deeper concepts in the book, which just makes it all even more awesome.
See, at the end of the series, Katniss even acknowledges this. The whole Gale/Peeta triangle represented more than just romance in its own right. It represented her ultimate choice, between revenge, war, and hatred, and forgiveness, peace, and love. In choosing Peeta, she decided not to fight fire with fire, so to speak. Additionally, like with Ron and Hermione, Peeta and Katniss are in many ways very different and therefore balance each other out. They don't bicker so much because that's not in Peeta's nature, but they are very different people.
Also, Peeta Mellark. It is very hard to argue with the awesomeness of Peeta.
Amy and Rory from Doctor Who
Now Doctor Who, which I've become very rapidly obsessed with, has a lot of different couples which I ship. Amy and Rory is probably the easiest to explain. They grew up together, similar to the ships above, which always gains bonus points in my mind. They also balance each other out the same way the other ships do, being as different as they are.
Rory is a nurse, and he's generally very sweet. He's also the most loyal boyfriend (and eventually, husband) in all of history. Also, he's legit. He punched Hitler and then put him in a closet. He will do anything to protect Amy. Over and over again, in his time as the Doctor's companion, he proves how deeply he loves Amy, and that is a beautiful thing.
Amy is a lot more free-spirited. She's the one who runs off with the Doctor originally, and she has fire in her. She can get a bit immature at times, which I think is very relatable. I really like Amy as a character. She's less settled than Rory, and often, appears in that to care less. But the truth is, she loves Rory just as deeply as he loves her. She just shows it differently. Their love is undeniable and beautiful, and together they make a fantastic couple.
I also really really ship Rose and the Doctor, so very much. The Doctor and Rose both have that verve that keeps them going in all the adventures. Rose understands the Doctor in a way very few others do. She brings him back from the brink after his traumatic experiences in the Time War, and all of this, as an ordinary, even slightly low-brow Londoner girl. When Rose got trapped in the parallel world, I cried more than I have ever cried watching Doctor Who. It shattered my heart.
Nowadays, I'm kind of rooting for Clara and the Eleventh Doctor. I've struggled to like Eleven, personally. It's very necessary for him to be the way he is, but I personally have a hard time with characters who shut down their emotions all the time. Clara, though, seems to reach him, with all her spunk and verve. She's given him hope again, and I hope it will bring him back into, you know, being a bit more human. Even though he is, in fact, a Time Lord.
And that is my summary of Doctor Who ships, LOL.
Anakin and Padme from Star Wars
I'm sure people will have some things to say about this one, but hear me out. I'm not saying they were a perfect couple. With the way they ended, it's pretty obvious they weren't. Even so, their romance made for a darn good story.
Now, those of you who know Star War know that Anakin becomes Darth Vader, infamous villain and the father of Luke and Leia. The prequels, featuring Anakin and Padme, came under this knowledge. We all knew it was going to end badly, that Anakin would turn to the Dark Side, but we watched anyway. Why? Because his love story and his subsequent fall was a good story (shut up, prequel haters. I have nothing to say to you.)
In this story, Anakin meets Padme when he's nine and she's fourteen. He knows right away they're going to get married, because Jedi. When they meet again, much later, as adults, things get complicated, because he's in love with her, but according to the laws of their world, they are not allowed to be together.
So they get married, and they are terribly terribly in love, and then Padme gets pregnant. Which is a bit of a complication, but they decide to go on with it. Except Anakin keeps having these prophetic dreams that Padme dies in labor. A lot of things happen, conspiracies, stupid Jedi, blah blah blah, and he turns to the Dark Side in hopes of defeating death. But the darkness takes over him, and he ends up getting all abusive at Padme, breaks her heart, destroys the galaxy, and lo and behold she dies in childbirth: not because of the birth, but because of a broken heart.
Which I think is sweet and tragic, although also a little weird.
But Padme's legacy lives in the original trilogy through her children, who, like her, continue to believe in Anakin's ability to become good again. Which he does! Yay!
There are a lot of themes and ideas to take out of Star Wars, but I really love Anakin and Padme's story because of the concepts it illustrates, in the power of love and family, for one. It's also a cautionary tale about how emotions, when either in too great quantity or too little, become dangerous. It shows how easy it is to fall towards darkness.
Because Disney, that's why. Disney is very, very good at writing romances, even though the stories are all warped from their originals. For the sake of storytelling, it doesn't really matter. Also, music!
Beauty and the Beast: the story of a man who experiences a change of heart because of a girl who dares to be different and stand up to him. Love is the catalyst for change here. The story demonstrates conflicted love and balance in action, not Stockholm Syndrome (Rapunzel and Mother Gothel is a much better example of that). Also, it's a brilliant story. Magic and schtuff.
The Little Mermaid: the story of a guy and a girl with a star-crossed love who save each other's live. Eric is dreamy, all right, and I love Ariel's spunk. The fact that they both get a chance to save each other is a big one for me. This is about love overcoming all kinds of challenges, and really is just beautiful.
Those are just my top two. I could go on and on. I love Disney movies, and their brilliant couples and their awesome magic and their pretty music.
Ta-da! Thanks for reading, and come back next time for a rant on how much I love names.
What are your favorite love stories?
Images via technologytell.com, thehungergames.wikia.com, nathanjsmarchand.com, and vanityfair.com.
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