December 26, 2000 

So I was reading Debra Fran Baker's very interesting essay on the 
nature of Heroes and dark AU fiction -- it's here, thanks, Ins! -- 
and I have to say I completely disagree. 


OK, so not *really*, I mean, for the most part, the essay is her 
personal opinion, and carefully based from that standpoint, but well, 
it doesn't fit this little black duck. 

For instance, she made the point that people watch shows with 
clear hero/villain markers *wanting* to see the hero remain the 
hero. That within the bounds of canon and authorial intent, the hero 
would no longer be *him/herself* if changed into a villain. 

That's a fascinating idea, and I'll certainly be chewing on it for 
a while, but, at the moment, it goes completely against my idea of 
fan fiction. Mainly, I'm here because I love this stuff. And I love 
this stuff because I can take my favorite characters and events and 
push them all the places the show can't or won't go -- 

With the vastly important limit that they *must* remain recognizably 
themselves. That is to say, I can write Mulder as a bloodsucking 
fiend, but he damned well better be Mulder -- and thanks to you, Debra, 
for telling me I did it right. That series took a lot out of me. Part 
of me is still shocked that it's *over*. 

But anyhow, yes. I *don't* watch these shoes for traditional archetypes 
of hero and villain. I *don't* always want the villain thwarted at the 
end. Part of that is general ennui -- I'm so *bored* with traditional 
entertainment -- and part of it is just whatever perversity I was 
born with, or nurtured into -- 

I'm in love with the dark outsider. With the person or creature who 
can be darkly flawed while loving his family. For the Duncan who can 
rape, the Fraser who can viciously taunt, the Buffy who's not too high 
on herself to slay from behind. (And maybe, just maybe, I want to drag 
them down off the pedestal. Make them real. Human. I've always preferred 
that nutjob Batman to Superman.) 

And just as some writers take the *good* qualities of these characters 
and extrapolate them into fan fiction, so do I take the bad. I am also 
in  love with possibility, after all, with the terrifying way that vastly 
important life decisions can change you forever. 

Canon is not a portrait to me, not a landscape, not anything remotely 
finished. I do not work in a world where the picture is *almost* 
complete save for tiny holes -- missing scenes, anyone? -- I work in 
a world where canon is simply a large number of points on a plane. 

The writers connect the dots one way, I connect the dots any number 
of other ways. 

To me, the best fan fiction will always be the stories that connect the 
highest number of dots in the most creative of ways. The ones that 
make me *believe* that the story is Truth, no matter how many 
different ways Buffy kills off her Slayerettes. Truth, for at least as 
long as I read. 

So, yes, I *am* into canon. 

Sort of. 

And I want my heroes as ambiguous as they can possibly be. 

Bad Ben. Evil Dunkie. Slayer on a Rampage -- cases can be made for 
all of them, and, IMO, *should* be made. Fan fiction is about 
variety, after all. Who wants to read the same story over and over? 

Heh. And to answer that question, I must go to the Spike, who 
has a most interesting theory about Fannish Mythologies. Spike? 
Write it down.