E's Unconventional Buffy Shipping - Overview

Title: Unconventional Buffy Shipping, An Overview

Writer: E Email: ebailey140@aol.com

Disclaimer: Don't own any of these people, Joss and some corporations do.

Archiving: Sure, just let me know

It seems anytime we read an article on fanfic, writers seem to stress the unconventional relationships often present. They puzzle many (Well, granted, I'm puzzled by the massive amounts of Angel/Xander and Xander/Giles fic, myself). Where do these ideas come from, they wonder? Why do they appeal to fans? Well, the answers pretty simple. Fanfic allows fans to explore relationships not explored on the show, to delve into the characters' inner workings, and place them in different situations. Here (given which list this is), I'll explore unconventional shipping centering around Buffy (and may do the same for Willow at a later date)...

We start with the conventional relationships on the show, Buffy/Angel, and Buffy/Riley. B/A is the show's Great Epic Dark Romance, so it's natuarally going to inspire a lot of fic. There's been some decent Buffy/Riley fic, too, even though I'm not a big fan of that relationship. For many Buffy fans, though, there was the OTHER great love affair, that ignited a passion in Buffy that Riley will never match...


What, you may ask? They never had an affair! You people are taking all that the wrong way! Ah, but this was the relationship that reeked with subtext. It was written and developed in a way that you could read it any way you wanted. If you were uncomfortable with what every scene between them implied, you could dismiss it, as Cordy did in Homecoming when Xander referred to the two of them getting sweaty. This, of course, was tailor made for fanfic writers, who took it and ran, in many different directions. It rivaled the dark passion of B/A, and Faith, as Buffy's dark mirror, said a lot about Buffy, herself. B/F shippers acknowledge that the B/A relationship was a great love, but argue that it can't work, with Angel being a vampire. Similarly, the B/F shipper argues, Buffy will never find happiness with a normal human guy. The only person who can truly understand her, and keep up with her, is her fellow Slayer.

Faith: "Damn straight! It's a Slayer thing!"

Yes, thanks, Faith. This would lead to another unconventional Buffy ship...

Faith: "Oh, God, are you going to bring up Red?!!! I should've..."

Faith, this is to a B/W list. Don't bash Willow, here. Anyway, as I was saying...


Willow was very jealous of Faith's place in Buffy's life, and in the episode Doppelgangland, we learned that Willow was bisexual...

Faith: "Not that she was about to admit it! I mean, hell, I knew she had the hots for B...."

Willow: "The 'hots'?!!! You are incapable of understanding real love..."

Faith: "You're just mad that I got there first."

Willow: "Why do you people always say that?!!"

Faith: "Like you could ever satisfy her... You just don't have it in you! Notice when you did finally come out you went for a blonde, but one you could dominate..."

Willow: "That's your problem! Love isn't about domination. It isn't about who's on top."

Faith: "Oh yeah, you don't have issues with B being dominant..."

Willow: "Just keep your skanky, psycho, slutty paws off her!!!"

Ahem! Anyway, the B/W shippers see Willow as Buffy true lifetime love. She balances Buffy, tempering her dark passions. As a powerful witch, she's capable of holding her own against the forces of darkness. The B/W shipper sees her as Buffy's other half, the two of them being a stronger whole than the sum of their parts. And, they're just so darn cute together. There are others, though, who feel Buffy's loyal white knight should end up with the girl, leading to...


Faith: "(Snort!) Oh yeah, like he could satisfy her..."

Willow: "Well, y'know, maybe he could..."

Faith: "Yeah, yeah, like you really believe that..."

The B/X shipper has seen Xander as Buffy's true love since the first episode, the one who's always been there for her, the normal guy, without benefit of super strength or magic, who still comes through for her time and again. Others, however, look to another primary figure in Buffy's life...


This tends to be the most polarizing of all Buffy shipping, either earning a reaction of "I can see that" or "EWWWW!!! He's so much older than her!!!" The B/G shipper responds that after being involved with a guy who was 240-something, with Ripper she's robbing the cradle. The B/G shippers sees Giles as very attractive...

Willow: "Well, he is!"

Faith: "Yeah... Yum!"

Willow: "I had the biggest crush on him. I guess Buffy kind of freaks at the thought of really noticing him. She so needs to see him as the father figure."

Faith: "Yeah, I was gonna push her past that, though. I kept starting makeout sessions when we were training in the Library, figuring he'd walk in on us and then she'd be so aroused we'd take him on the spot and make a Watcher sandwich. Problem was, Xander walked in on us just before Homecoming, so B was always jumpy about doin' it in the Library after that."

Willow: "I do NOT want to hear any more of that! Um, Xander was being serious about the 'getting sweaty' thing? Now, I'm going to have to apologise to him..."

...and think the Ripper past makes him perfect to bond with Buffy, over music, motorcycles, general hell raising... They also see him as the primary male figure in her life, the only one who truly knows the real Buffy.

Willow: "HEY!!! Best friend and roommate, here!"

Faith: "Yeah, and you got a lot of blind spots, too..."

ANYWAY... Moving on... There's a huge following pairing Buffy with another vampire...


This one is based on the combustable chemistry, both between the actors, and the characters. Things just get heated up when those two are in the same scene. Spike clearly has a passion for Buffy, which has become an obsession.

It's easy to see why. His reputation was built on being the Slayer of Slayers, and here's the one who beat him time and again. He admires the hell out of her. He's also a very romantic type, and without Dru to be the subject of worship, he needs a replacement, a goddess worth the devotion. Add to that, they've got a lot in common, a love for sex, violence, leather, and hair dye.

Faith: "He has it bad for her. You should have seen the look on his face when I did the body switch..."

Willow: "I'm surprised you ever made it out of the bathtub."

Then, we get to where the shipping seems to have no basis on the show, but comes up, anyway. We'll start with...


Willow: "Ewwww!"

Faith: "Hey, you were the one who was married to the Prom Queen for years..."

Willow: "You've been talking to that Kate Brolin person again!"

Yes, here's where unconventional shipping began feeding on itself. After all, after Faith and Willow, why shouldn't Cordy get some Buffy action?

Cordy: "Yeah!"

Willow: "Oh, like she'd ever touch you..."

Cordy: "How do you know she didn't? Maybe we were having an affair going back to Homecoming"

Faith: "I read that one! Why do you think I decked you in 5x5?"

Cordy: "Y'know, you and Spike need to learn that stalking a girl and attacking her friends isn't the way to a girl's heart"

Faith: "Oh... So, what do I need to do?"

Cordy: "Right, like I'd tell you..."

The strange thing about B/C fic is that some writers actually make it work. Going further into the giving a character Buffy action, we have...


Willow: "I am REALLY uncomfortable discussing this..."

Faith: "Why? You could have your cake and eat it, too!"

Willow: "But I always get left out..."

The B/O shipper takes the approach that Buffy is far more suited for Oz than Willow, both being wild, preditory, types...

Faith: "Yeah, what they say!"

Willow: How many times do I have to tell you, it's about balance?"

There've been some interesting B/O stories, that tend to involve their preditory sides bonding in some way, either with Oz being the only one who can understand what Buffy's going through...

Faith: "Hey!!!"

...besides Faith, OK?!!! Sheesh. In one series, in fact, Oz has to avoid Buffy when it's close to a full moon, because his wolf side is ascending, and reads Buffy's supernatural preditor status as another wolf. There's also some Buffy/Devon stories, and, of course, some Oz/Buffy/Devon stories...

Willow: "Feeling neglected, here."

There's even been a little Buffy/Doyle shipping...

Cordy: "What?!!! She just met the guy for a few seconds!"

...In alternate universes he survived in.

Cordy: "Oh, OK... Any threesomes with me involved?"

Not yet, but it's only a matter of time, I'm sure. Lastly, there's been a recent batch, continuing the need to ship Buffy with every attractive character she isn't blood related to, of...


Faith: "WHAT?!!! Where's a stake?!!!"

Willow: "I just need a pencil..."

The basis being, hey, if Angel and Spike are getting all that Buffy action, why should Dru be left out?

Faith: "Because she's NUTS!!!"

Cordy: "So are you!"

Faith: "Well, yeah, but it's different, y'know? I'm nuts in a, well, Slayer way..."

Cordy: (rolling eyes) "Whatever..."

Faith: "Well, I didn't mind that one where Dru used that hypnotic stuff to make B think she was me..."

Willow: "Hmmph."

It is, of course, only a matter of time before someone decides to pair Buffy with Tara...

Willow: "Hey, wait a minute!"

Cordy: "I don't know... I mean, that dream sequence could be taken as Tara having some key role in Buffy's life..."

Willow: "Not THAT kind of role!"

Faith: "I was surprised to see her. There I was, planning on boinking you while I was in Buffy's body, and you already had a girlfriend..."

Willow: (Shudders)

Faith: "So I settled on the beefstick..."

Cordy: "Look at it this way, Will, maybe they'll let you be a trio."

Willow: "But... then, it's all about Buffy, again..."

Faith: "OK, I'll get out of jail, and take B off your hands."

Willow: "No... You... Will... Not!"

Cordy: "Oh, come on! I thought Tara was yours!"

Willow: "She is! They both are! I'm not sharing!!!"

Cordy: "And people say I'm selfish..."


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