Do you know what a 'shipper is? It's someone who gets super into relationships in pop culture and feels very strongly about the fates and futures of said relationships. I, dear reader, am a shipper. I'm not hardcore, per se. I don't write fanfiction to create alternate universes where my couples get together. I don't wear 'TEAM' t-shirts. But I do strongly identify with a fictional relationship occasionally and root for that relationship.
So in honor of it being Valentine's week, and because I am feeling especially sappy this year, here is a list of a few of my favorite 'ships from movies, books, and television, along with a (sometimes unconventional) song for them and a scent or two.
You know the story. "Spring of '96. Two young lovers with frightening natural chemistry. A girl sits in a seven hundred dollar prom dress on the front steps of her house, waiting for the most romantic moment of her young life. Boy never shows up. Not until now." Debi and Martin are wonderful because they lead us to believe those that loved us once, and loved us best, might still love us again. Even in an ugly callous cynical and sarcastic world like the one of Grosse Pointe Blank, love conquers all -- in fully-automatic style.
Martin: "I'm sorry if I fucked up your life."
Debi: "It's not over yet."
Song: Peter Gabriel, "Let My Love Open the Door (To Your Heart);" Neko Case, "This Tornado Loves You"
Perfume: I always think of Debi (half) ironically wearing CK Obsession to the reunion. Is that weird? Martin does have obsessive recurring dreams about her... Martin doesn't wear anything. Someone might smell him coming.
2. Jane Eyre & Edward Fairfax Rochester, Jane Eyre
Now and forever, Jane and Edward will stand out in my mind as two sad and broken people who find each other and, despite great obstacles of circumstance and social convention, rebel against everything in defense of their love for one another. Is their relationship problematic? Sure. Could I forgive Edward if I were Jane? I don't know. I only know that when she hears his name on the wind, she goes to him, and I am glad she does.
Songs: Depeche Mode, "Somebody," The Decemberists, "Hazards of Love"
Perfume: For Jane, Guerlain Mitsouko; For Rochester, Guerlain Habit Rouge.
3. Nora Grey & Patch Cipriano, Hush, Hush series
I wasn't sure how I felt about Patch initially. He ran hot/cold and was often mean, way meaner than Daniel was to Luce in Fallen. It's hard to resist roguish, though. Is it wrong when I mentally picture Patch, he's basically Jess Mariano? But, you know, more of a '50s tough, and angelic. I like that Nora doesn't always trust him and isn't always willing to listen. I like that she makes her own decisions. Over the course of the series, Nora grows into one of the bravest female protagonists I've found in YA today. I'm excited to see how the series resolves.
Songs: Lou Reed, "This Magic Moment;" The Smiths "There is a Light That Never Goes Out"
Perfume: Patch is supposed to smell like "mint and earth," so I'm tossing CB I Hate Perfume Black March onto the list, but I admit I also associate Il Profumo Patchouli Noir with Patch and Nora.
4. Ethan Wate & Lena Duchannes, Beautiful Creatures
Ethan & Lena - you want to talk about two kids who will break your heart? Here they are. The most wonderful thing about this series is that the stories are told from Ethan's perspective, and he's the devoted and wounded one most of the time. Lena is confused, wild, willful, and non-conformist. And even when they're apart, their love is strong enough it could reconfigure time and space, even tear the world in two.
Songs: The Band Perry, "Walk Me Down the Middle;" Alison Brown, "Every Day I Write the Book;" The White Stripes, "Sugar Never Tasted So Good"
Perfume: Lena's scent, rosemary and lemons, which always makes me think of Miller Harris Fleurs de Bois, because it's meant to be a warm weather scent and it is always hot in Gatlin.
Yeah, yeah, Edward is forever, he and Bella are both eternal sparkly diamond parents. Call me a heretic, but to me the more interesting relationship isn't the first person you love who screws you over, abandons you, and breaks your heart. It's the person who comes after them. The person that says "Yes, I see how broken and messed up you are. That's okay. I'll love you, anyway." That's the person who restores my faith in humanity, my hope for a better love tomorrow. You know that Garth Brook's song, "Unanswered Prayers"? I love that song. Because Charlie is right - sometimes you have to love what's good for you. Or at least, here in the non-sparkly world, you should.
Songs: Soltero, "The Moment You Said Yes;" Linda Ronstadt, "When Will I Be Loved;" Natasha Bedingfield, "Pocket Full of Sunshine"
Perfume: I always think Bella must smell like food since people want to eat her, but if we focus on the non-blood drinkable parts of Bella (Are there any?), then I want to give her and Jacob a warm, sunny scent reflective of their warmth and Bella's desert origins, like Tauer Perfumes L'Air du Desert Marocain or Olympic Orchids Arizona. (Too on the nose?)
6. The Doctor & Rose Tyler, Doctor Who
They traveled through time and space, exploring both together and saving the world. They literally bent (and sometimes broke) the laws of the universe to find one another even when it seemed. Their isn't just a love for the ages, it is a love for all ages, all times, all dimensions. He's her mad man in a blue box; she's his Bad Wolf. Enough said.
Songs: Lykke Li, "Unrequited Love;" David Bowie, "Modern Love;" Beatles, "Here, There, and Everywhere"
Perfume: I want to put Rose in something excellent like By Kilian Back to Black, but she's probably wearing Burberry Brit with those overalls. And I can't scent the Doctor, but I know Esscentual Alchemy Natural Perfumes has taken a delightful stab with Time Lord, found here.
7. Elena Gilbert and Stefan Salvatore, The CW's The Vampire Diaries
I know, I know. Believe me. Damon and Elena means more Damon, and who couldn't use more of that? Damon is so hot sometimes I think my eyeballs will literally melt out of my head. But when it comes to Elena, I'm going to have to say that she was a healthier, happier person with Stefan, and Stefan was a less Ripper/slightly more broody version of himself. They love each other and they're better for and with each other. We're all going to have to deal with that.
(Which leaves Damon conveniently available....right?)
Songs: Fiona Apple, "Slow Like Honey;" Feist, "1-2-3-4;" Iron & Wine, "Such Great Heights"
Perfume: Elena is so innocent, but I can't help but imagine her running around Mystic Falls in Agent Provocateur. Okay, maybe she only wears that only when she starts running around in one of those ridiculous Founder's event ballgowns. The rest of the time she probably rocks something like Prada Infusion d'Iris. Stefan probably wears something youthful and full of denial, like Davidoff Cool Water or Thierry Mugler Angel AMen. (And I like to imagine Damon wearing Bvlgari Black, and his songs for Elena have to be Chris Issak's "Wicked Game" and Ok Go's "A Million Ways to be Cruel".)
8. Logan Echolls & Veronica Mars, Veronica Mars
Oh, Veronica and Logan. How I love to want to kill both of you for being stupid. If ever two people were a disaster of epic love proportions, it is you two. You hurt each other over and over, and yet there is not a moment after the kiss on the balcony that I cannot see you together. It just seems cataclysmically meant to be.
Logan: "I thought our story was epic, you know? You and me."
Veronica: "Epic how?"
Logan: "Spanning years and continents. Lives ruined and blood shed. Epic!"
Veronica: "Come on. Ruined lives? Bloodshed? You really think a relationship should be that hard?"
Logan: "No one writes songs about the ones that come easy."
Songs: Mike Doughty, "I Hear the Bells;" Blair, "Hearts;" The Be Good Tanyas, "In Spite of All the Damage I've Done"
Perfume: Veronica wears Jovan White Musk (Okay, this is a cheat KBell wears it herself, and I can't not think that when I mentally sniff her.) For Logan, something warm and sexy and not necessarily traditional - Costume National 21 or CB/Alan Cumming's 2nd Cumming.
One girl in all the world... and one vampire redeemed find love against all odds. It's written in the stars by the Powers that Be. Some day, hopefully in the not so distant future, she will stop carrying the weight of the world on her shoulders. And when she does, the monster she made a man will be waiting. (I mentally retcon the Angel/Cordelia fiasco. When it comes to Angel and Buffy, there can be only one.)
Angel: "You still my girl?"
Songs: Urge Overkill, "Girl You'll Be a Woman Soon;" Bat for Lashes "Siren Song;" Tom Petty, "Angel Dream (No. 2)"
Perfume: Serge Luten Bois de Violette, which I cannot justify. I don't even know where Buffy would come by such a thing. I just feel like she would. Or maybe Atelier Grand Neroli? Sweet and not necessarily innocent or fragile, but hopeful nonetheless, particularly in those early seasons.
10. Sydney Bristow & Michael Vaughan, Alias
Songs: Peggy Lee & Benny Goodman, "All I Need Is You"; Beatles, "I've Just Seen a Face;" Robin Thicke, "When I Get You Alone"
Perfume: Sydney might where a lot of different scents with her costumes, but she strikes me as a classic sort of girl -- Chanel No. 5 or Worth Je Reviens, maybe? Something that screams classic and elegant and refined, but not too noticeable - a great cover for the dangerous, adventure-loving spy in us all.
I have a tough time scenting Michael Vartan because I feel like, having spent a huge portion of his formative years in France, he'd have some strong personal preferences. Vaughan, on the other hand, probably wears something very work-a-day government handler, like Old Spice. Boring, conventional, reliable, but also...attractive.
That's my list. What couples for you 'ship, dear reader? I see Titanic is being re-released in 3D soon. Who wants to tell me what they think Jack or Rose would wear? Wish I'd done Tara & Willow from Buffy instead? Any Luke Danes/Lorelai Gilmore fans out there? What about Wash & Zoe from Firefly? Or Brian Kinney & Justin Taylor from Queer as Folk? (I will never forget that dance scene.)
Inquiring 'shippy minds want to know.