I decided to limit myself to five from Who (which was impossibly hard to narrow down, but it still would have been if I'd done all ten) so as to reprazent for mah other fandoms.
- John Steed/Mrs Emma Peel (The Avengers [telleh, not the shitty fillum]) My prototypical saving-the-world-and-looking-good-doing-i
t ship (such ships are going to be a theme). What I particularly love about it is the way it's all in the subtext, but definitely there, and that although they're having a lot of fun they realise that there are things way more important than their individual happiness, an attitude there is far too little of in today's world in general and fiction in particular (it's the downside of the All New Having Emotions On Telly, if you ask me; but more generally I am a complete sucker for "duty" while also distrusting it). Also, Steed is impossibly charming and Mrs Peel is essentially my gold standard for female sexiness (I am quite willing to admit that seeing that moment from Touch of Brimstone on late night C4 in my teenage years essentially shaped my entire sexuality). When Diana Rigg gets written out, it's done by the device of having her long-thought-dead husband reappear, but it's OK 'cos he's played by Patrick Macnee too in long shot.
- Scott/Emma (X-Men comics) I should point out that the Morrison New X-Men run is like the second comics I ever read (after Watchmen) and I also adore the Whedon Astonishing. But I just love this ship, I love the fucked-up-ness of it but even more I love that deep down they do care about each other even though everyone assumes she's brainwashed him. I also love the telepathy-enhanced hotness and it probably helps a lot that Emma is basically based on Mrs-Peel-only-evil-but-then-reformed. The bit at the end of Here Comes Tomorrow where Jean has to fix things by shipping them, basically, is glorious and life-affirming and anti-the-hideous-concept-of-OTP-ish and always makes me smile, even if the Silvestri version of Emma is like my least favourite (all his future-people are gorgeous, though). Also, I love the scene in Astonishing where Wolverine interrupts them with that "So which stage of grieving is this?" line because OMG Whedon does good dialogue sometimes.
- Picard/Crusher (ST:TNG) Way before I knew what shipping was, before I even had the Internet, I shipped these two like woah in my head. They're lovely together and they've got just the right amount of angst and awkwardness with the whole "I was best friends with your husband and feel responsible for his death" thing (I really think Bev is totally over that and constantly flirting with him to try and make him realise) and also Wesley and how does it all fit and he doesn't really like children but ... and yes, it's lovely and in my head very fluffy and domesticated and it's totally canon that she marries him in the future and I don't care if that timeline was unhappened, it's clearly going to happen anyway. And there's this nice undercurrent where he's the captain but she's the one person who can relieve him of duty and I just love them. And he only ever even went anywhere near Pulaski because he'd got attached to the idea of having a relationship with his CMO. But that episode in S7 when they went into that digging through the
fanficspec scripts stage and they're all telepathic is all a bit lame and it would have been better not to drag it out in the open if the only thing they were going to do with it was push the Reset Button on it. (Of course, TNG is basically the last gasp of the we-have-to-make-it-so-it-can-be-shown-in-a ny-order syndication approach.) The Internet pr0n for them seems to be full of ageplay fics, which weirds me out. Though in my head, they totally spend lots of time in the holodeck playing Dixon Hill, so maybe I shouldn't judge so much.
- Willow/Tara (Buffy) I just love these two. I always liked Tara ever since she first came in and I like Willow being gay (though I am not opposed to Willow/Oz at all, especially in their early "Who's that girl?" stages). Being an angst fan, I particularly love them in S6, they are one of the best things in it, with Tara getting a backbone and leaving Willow for Turning Evil but loving her too much and coming back and thinking she can change her. But they have so many other good bits, like Willow looking after her post-Glory-brainsuck (though it is all a little bit Lesbian Lovers in Refrigerators). And spells as a metaphor was always fun. Of course, it would have been much better if they didn't need to have a metaphor and were just allowed the kissings like all the het couples (I really don't like that the kiss eventually comes in The Body, it seems a bit "it's allowed because they're really upset").
- Bernard/Manny (Black Books) Look at them! Just look at them! Particularly in that episode where they write the children's book together. Yes, Bernard's a bastard and it could come across as all a bit abusive but he's so totally helplessly useless at real life and dependent on Manny for pretty much anything that I think that gives Manny power in a weird way? But anyway, they're just great.
- Ian/Barbara (DW) They're just so lovely. And sweet. And adorable. And they're pretty much nearly going out back before things get super-batshit-weird for them, so it's not like the strangeness of their travels brings them together BUT IT SO TOTALLY DOES and they're like the sensible Mum and Dad of the mad TARDIS family and between them they turn One from a crotchety git into a genuine hero for evermore. I have a fanfic I never finished where they wake up in the City of the Saved (the technological afterlife in the Faction Paradox universe) all back in their Sixties bodies (their imagos are so from their time with the Doctor) and their note from the Secret Architects just says something like "Without you, none of this would exist" because obviously the Doctor is indirectly responsible for the existence of the City, once you know The Spoiler (there, I think I have described that in such a way as not to give it away, just on the remote chance there's anyone reading this who is likely to read Of The City Of The Saved ... but hasn't yet; though to be honest, YOU ALL SHOULD READ IT, it is one of the best Who things ever and the fact that it's not official Who doesn't matter a jot [just like Punchline]). And they were doing it by The Romans at the latest, and they got back home all happy, and they lived long and happy lives and died in bed together and basically, Cardigans FTW.
- Doctor/Master (DW) All incarnations/all incarnations, but particularly Three/Delgado, Five/Ainley, Seven/Ainley (have you seen Survival lately?), Eight/Roberts and Ten/Simm. It's just so fucked up and yet they're clearly so right for each other in a lot of ways and I'm not entirely sure I buy the tragic backstory fanon version where basically the Master turned evil out of their ship going south but it sort of feels a bit convincing and he's definitely attention seeking and likes it best when they get to work together. And my god, the Tennant/Simm chemistry. Shalka!Nine/other-Jacobi is fun, too.
- Nyssa/Tegan (DW) There are infinitely many rooms in the TARDIS. And yet they share. To be honest, I mainly ship them because Nyssa is my favourite Who angst-monkey (entire planet killed by the Master, who stole her dad's body, come on) and she needs someone's shoulder to cry on. But also because they're hawt together. And I do love that Nyssa leaves for Noble Reasons and Tegan is completely broken up about it.
- Mickey/Jake (DW) Because Mickey deserves better than being treated as a doormat by Rose. Because Jake is totally canonically gay even if they chickened out of saying so at the last minute. Because they were going to Paris. Because it's just fucked up enough with the business about the dead double. Because they save the world and look good doing it.
- Ten/Martha (DW) The first ship I've ever really actively wanted to see come true in canon, so of course it didn't happen. (Picard/Crusher I think I realised would never happen on screen because of the nothing-ever-actually-changes nature of the show.) They are awesome together, and he flirts with her all the time and she is just shiny in so many different ways and SPINNY HUGS. The spinny hugs are the proof. When the spinny hugs are in evidence, no unrequited anvils count. Their top moment is THE WHOLE OF THE LAZARUS EXPERIMENT, in which they basically are Steed and Emma. And also it's when he stops being a fuckwit and pretending he's about to dump her, which is a plus. Basically, I think S3 should have gone: Smith and Jones without the "not that you're replacing her" line, all the other eps but with the awesome we-save-the-world-and-look-good-doing-it Steed/Peel shippiness that we had in Lazarus and 42. We could still have had Doctor/Master that way, totally.
So actually it turns out I am really boring and generally ship canonical-or-near-canonical stuff.