Everyone that knows me in Tumblr, Fanforum and LJ knows I'm quite a big Sheldon/Penny fan. It didn't take me but to see the pilot to just love them together. In what way? I didn't know nor did I care. I just liked them interacting in whichever way they were, and the pilot was just, even in its very obvious flaws, completely endearing and organic when it came to them. There was this undefinable sparkle that sizzled everytime they looked at each other, and there was nothing more I needed to think or see or predict or speculate or hope but the simplest of things: I just liked them being in the same space, acting and being awesome. Of course, the Harry Potter fandom introduced me to the world of fandoms. Even the term was new to me: fandom, ship, trope, plot, cliché, conflict, deus-ex-machina, etc.
Because of that, and created as a social being, it was due to start seeing things I liked in terms very closely related to the other fans. That's when I wanted more.
The vague, simple, viewer-like vision I had of TBBT changed, and I found myself knee deep into discussions, speculations, desires and hopes, and it was not long before I was drowned by the influence you get to have when in fandom, even worse, the cold depths (hellish more like) of fandom in shipper grounds, and just the cherry to the cake, in non-canon ship grounds. Anyway, I wanted to leave this very clear for you to understand where I'm coming from.
After reading the report I thought I was going to be really mad or sad or angry or depressed or incensed. I just thought the whole Shamy deal...no, first things first.
My love for the ship (Sheldon and Penny) came from my love of them separately. First and foremost (and as I'm very sure happens with many other SP fans -I wouldn't really know from others because I don't frequent their grounds-) by their premises alone. It is who they are by themselves and as people of their own that made me want to ship them. It is who Sheldon was and who Penny was that made me think they would be well suited for each other. It was not the nerd/hot girl thing. It wasn't even the "opposites attract". It was as simple as saying I thought they matched. It was the "strength to my weakness" kind of thing. It was not the LP "Its time the hottie suffered" or "Leonard loves her" or "She is looking for a nice guy".
But the thing I loved about them... doesn't happen anymore.
First because I couldn't care less about Penny. Any hope I had of her is long gone and very deep down the earth. I don't hate her, and I certainly feel a sparkle every time she is something more in the show. The last time I loved her character was when she wanted to open the toy and PLAY with it.
I love her everytime she is something more than just... a place holder. They made her pathetic and disguise it under some sort of depression for love, and that's even more pathetic, as if she is the usual, stereotypical blonde bimbo from the fifties that tries her hand at love and it's the only thing she is meant to do. The worst thing is that I took it like the LP fans said it was, and she was not happy because she wasn't with Leonard... just think about the wrongness in this, I still would bet my all my money that's exactly what the writers are trying to portray though. However, I'm not here to talk about the failings of the LP ship, you can read that in the post I made about them for the 100th episode (very easy to find, I have like six posts in here)
The thing is, I don't care about her character anymore. For me this is not Penny.
I also learnt to take it a little bit more as "the characters feel" rather than "the writers made them feel". Just a deity knows how much other fans told me they took it like that. So yeah, Penny liking Leonard? You can see why in the post I mentioned, but I just think it's the fucking stupidest thing ever. Every time I wonder why she likes him, I can't help but think she is fucking dumb. Every time they mention they are together and do stuff, I just think it's fucking mindless. That' the moment I don't want her with Sheldon. I don't want this stupid, manipulative, boring blonde with him.
There used to be a time when she... sizzled by her own. Even in her failures and her weakness. Now she just seems to be there to be the awful, mediocre girlfriend to the successful nerdy guy, and shouldn't she suffer for him now? Or, "it doesn't matter she barely has screen time now, I know she is with Leonard"... I don't want that for Sheldon. Again, it's not about who wins, it's not about some sort of role the fill, it's about themselves, and Penny is not making it really easy for me to simply like her. I don't care if she doesn't end up with Sheldon. But I would be glad if something else happened, because as far as this goes, I couldn't careless about the current Penny. I would be more than happy to see that change, for as for now, not at all.
Now, Sheldon doesn't go without guilt here. I've seen him more common and...ordinary than normal, in fact, his quirkiness simply lies now in his inability to edit himself. He was so original about everything, but he has become more arrogant, meaner, more... nothing really special to fret over. People used to think him so iconic, but now the only thing that stands out from his characterization is his ability to be a condescending jerk (not my words).
I still can see the potential the SP could have had had the writers given them personalities that strove to be their best, but the writers are simply developing them to fit their respective partners. So if the writers don't care enough about them to make them justice, why should I? It would only lead me to suffer, and I did that enough.
I realised I don't have any tenderness for the CURRENT characters so... reading the taping report. Yeah, didn't feel really that much.
In fact, I was feeling it more for Amy. I can't help but think her a geek kick ass princess, way ahead of her time. It was such a shame that she got the justice and not Sheldon, which I admit leaves a rather acidic taste in my mouth. There is the "but" obviously, because as much I as kind of girl crushed on her, I just didn't like her using everything Sheldon likes to make him think she is the one because she makes him happy. You are supposed to be like that all the time or as much as you can for their sake, not for your own desires.
Now, as for the ever delusional, hopeful, stupid part of me that still wants to ship SP as they should be, and still ships them for what they represented in past and, in some rather fuzzy glimpses, now in the present, I found it peculiar the fact that several of the things Penny does for Sheldon are things that yes, make him happy. Of course that doesn't happen anymore, and of course the viewers won't remember, and of course Shamy fans are going to ignore it (just like they ignore everything SP). But yes, Penny did use to do stuff that made Sheldon happy. Hell, she made it to please him, to make him happy, not to get anything out of him, or lure him into something. I found it rather sneaky from Amy. There is a side of me that rejoices in her also KNOWING Sheldon, but the biggest part despises her for using that power she has to deepen their relationship. Shamy fans are going to find this so endearing they will burst into tears, but I personally found it rather dark and manipulative. It's rather conflicting, because I thought it really cute, but then I just had to think JUST A LITTLE. And that little bit changed the whole outlook.
Yes, Sheldon, Penny is a bad influence.
Anyway, for the fans that took this too hard, remember that both reports were written by what we could speculate to be Shamy shippers, so of course they are going to see stuff the way it's convenient to them. Just like we all do.
I'm going to take on a lot of people's advice and just... wait until someone saves the show from the labels the roles they are forcing them in.
Keep calm and ship Howard/Bernadette.
- Shenny: Spoilers for 5x23