March 18th, 2010


just so you know

Tomorrow night's episode of SPARTACUS is called "Whore." No, it is not written by Frank Miller. (That I know of.) The logline: Batiatus starts pimping Spartacus out, and our hero's new career gets off with a bang when he is ordered to service the richest woman in Rome.


I mean, it is *exactly* like all those fanfic AUs where the male hero is forced into prostitution, except for the minor detail that THIS IS NOT A FANFIC AU BUT THE ACTUAL SHOW. I am starting to think the fanfic AUs of SPARTACUS will involve all the gladiators working very peacefully in a present-day office somewhere, or something. (Pietros is the intern who makes coffee for everybody! And he has a hot relationship with Mr. Barca, but then Mr. Barca gets downsized and Pietros is very sad and quits. And Mr. Batiatus takes a project away from Crixus and gives it to Spartacus, and Crixus is worries he's going to be fired, and basically it's like GLENGARRY GLEN ROSS, but with slo-mo and orgy scenes in the break room or something.)
sledge hammer!

thoughts on the fannish AU

It's funny, but my SPARTACUS office AU, which I wrote pretty deliberately as badfic, reminds me just how much I really dislike fanfic AUs. Part of this is because it turned out worse than I intended, looking at it, but part of it has to do with the nature of fanfic AUs in general.

I don't like AUs for a lot of reasons, but I think the chief one has to do with one of the reasons I don't like porn fic. About ten years ago, I was of the theory that fans wrote porn when the actual material didn't sufficiently capture their interest -- ie, if you really liked THE X-FILES, you wouldn't be writing dumb porn about Scully doing Mulder, you'd be writing casefic in an attempt to emulate the actual show. I don't know if that was true then, but it certainly isn't true now; for a lot of people, porn is the entire point of fandom. But AUs often give me that feeling: if you like these characters so much, why are you putting them in weird scenarios where they're so far removed from what made you fond of them in the first place?

And putting existing characters and dynamics into an AU often is clumsy as hell. Collapse )