Tuesday, February 5, 2013
Shipping and Consequences
I don't like being one of those "stop liking what I don't like" kind of douchebags, but every time I encounter a Goliath/Demona 'shipper, I roll my eyes and hope they are talking about the tenth century and the tenth century only. Then I find out they're not, and I wonder if they're considering the full implications of what they are supporting. Then I find out they're not but they don't care anyway... because Goliath/Elisa is "weird."
Let's talk about why Demona and Goliath being a couple again is just a preposterous idea. Yes, gargoyles mate for life. The idea of "divorce" is practically non-existent among gargoyles... but I also tend to think that one mate attempting to blow the other one away with a bazooka because they don't agree with their dreams of genocide is practically non-existent, too. A lot of these people tend to put the burden of Goliath and Demona no longer being a couple on Goliath himself. Greg Weisman already wrote an excellent essay about why such thinking is wrong, so why am I posting? Maybe because there are some things I cannot let go either. I have witnessed spousal abuse, you don't need claws or a big gun... it's not pretty to watch. In this relationship, Demona was the abuser. Even in the "good days" she deceived her mate, lied to him, manipulated him... it was never an ideal relationship, even if Goliath himself didn't realize it until the moment she pointed a bazooka at him. I hear a lot of people say that Goliath and his clan never gave Demona a chance, and every time I hear this I get so angry, I wonder what kind of planet these people are on. I have witnessed spousal and familial abuse, and I have heard others say that it was the abuser who was getting the unfair shake. Whether it's in reality or in fiction, this kind of thinking makes me nauseous. If you still 'ship Goliath/Demona then you support spousal and familial abuse. I know there are some here who want to see Demona reform and make up with Goliath, and I suppose I can understand that to a degree... but I tend to think of that as foolish wishful thinking. If you are ever in a situation where you are with an abusive significant other, and you break free of that relationship, the worst thing you can do is get back with them. I know in some of these fantasies, Demona's change of heart is supposed to be genuine... but it still sends a message that is, at best, poorly thought out.
As for Goliath/Elisa being "weird" and "unnatural." Yeah, I've heard this quite a bit also. According to Greg Weisman, human/gargoyle couplings are so rare that there isn't even a taboo against it. On his entire timeline, between 9386 B.C. and 2199 A.D. there is only ONE other besides Goliath and Elisa. I like that. It makes G/E and the mysterious other couple a lot more special. That being said, to write off the mutual, and respectful love between two or more consenting adults and dismiss it as "weird" is, quite frankly, rather disgusting. There was a time when interracial couples were considered weird... and in some parts of the world, even in so-called developed countries, they're still considered that way. Same thing with same-sex couples. Elisa herself is interracial, and her relationship with Goliath is an allegory for everyone who ever fell in love in a situation that society deemed was abnormal. "Gargoyles" was first and foremost a show about tolerance, so it blows my mind that some fans of it completely missed that particular point. Do any "Star Trek" fans dismiss Sarek and Amanda Grayson's marriage as "weird". Do any comic book fans dismiss Superman and Lois Lane's relationship as "unnatural"? I live next door to two lesbians who are raising two beautiful, happy children... should I dismiss them as "weird" and "unnatural"? Do you know what depresses me? I'm sure there is at least one person who would say "yes" to the previous sentence.
I don't expect to change any minds. But I had to get this off my chest, because I believe that how two or more consenting adults find true love and respect (or are found by it) is sacred and none of us are in any position to judge them. I also believe that no one should ever feel pressured to stay in a relation that they find damaging be it physical, mental, or emotional abuse.
Oh, and before someone throws my hatred of "Twilight" back at me, that entire "saga" is all about remaining in a damaging relationship. If Stephanie Meyer was writing "Gargoyles", Goliath would have likely stayed with Demona and kept on being emotionally abused and manipulated by her, with the narrative not understanding that this is a terrible relationship.