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Comic-Con 2018 has ended

Sunday, July 22 • 2:00pm - 3:00pm
Psychology and Shipping: Factors that Influence Character Pairings

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What ships would you go down for? Do you ever wish your shows or fandoms would give you the couple you want to stay up all night writing slash fiction about? "Shipping" is used to describe when fans put characters together (a pair, trio, or group) into a relationship. These relationships are often romantic but can also refer to platonic groupings. These "ships" can come in many forms, including "slash" relationships (often same-sex, such as Kirk/Spock), a symbol connecting the names (such as Kylo Ren + Rey), hybrid names or fandom specific terms (such as Stony for Steve Rogers and Tony Stark), and even the OTP (one true pairing, such as Spuffy to refer to Spike and Buffy). These relationships can be canon or simply fan endorsed. One of the most interesting components of these ships is that they often defy social norms and can be seen as taboo. Same-sex, polyamorous, interspecies, and rivalry relationships are often presented and discussed with the same love and affection often reserved for heterosexual couples in most other forms of media. Given the amount of time spent on these pairings and the spending and viewing power of "shippers," a research study was conducted by April Fugett, Ph.D., Keith W. Beard, Psy.D. (professors of psychology, Marshall University), Britani Black, M.A., and Carrie Dean, M.A. (doctoral students, Marshall University) that examined several psychological theories in conjunction with participant characteristics to explore their impact on over 150 "ships" from across a variety of types of ships, genres, and pop culture references. The results demonstrate how psychological factors inform character combination preferences. This can influence marketing toward certain outlets and specific groups, such as the LGBTQ populations. It can also provide information regarding individuals' leisure time activities and hobbies.

Sunday July 22, 2018 2:00pm - 3:00pm
Grand 9, Marriott Marquis San Diego Marina

Attendees (363)