Sex Lives of Cult Television Characters

In the essay, The sex lives of cult television characters, by Sara Gwenllian Jones, Sara focuses on the work of slash (male/male or female/female) fanfiction writers. Sara is a teacher of television and digital media at Cardiff University in the United Kingdom. She also wrote a book called Cult Television, where she and other scholars examine show that are categorized as cult television to find defining characteristic to place them in this sub culture.

41WMNKJP2ZL._SX309_BO1,204,203,200_ (Book cover for Cult Television by Sara Gwenllian Jones)

This essay exemplifies the fact that cult television is a great basis of slash fanfiction.   The fact that in cult television literally anything can happen and be an acceptable outcome, spurs on fanfiction writers to the erotic relationships that are portrayed in most slash stories. The main writers of slash fanfiction are females, whom, aim to change normative gender constraints for males, to more emotional and sensual emotions that are generally found in romantic novels. With this shift to a more romantic/emotional man, this dictates a change in the masculinity and sexuality of men.

As stated by Marie-Laure Ryan in this essay in respect to fanfiction,

“Every act of reading constructs the text and actualizes its world in a different way”.

So in cult television, when an author writes a story, they open doors to allow for different worlds to be seen for that specific show. This then allows the characters to be portrayed in a different light, more specifically, to have slash relationships as a norm.

In this essay it makes a clear statement that with fanfiction, especially fanfiction of cult television, it allows the author to explore whatever they feel like. Whether it be objectively real or fake, right or wrong, true experiences or something they want to explore, what was once thought as myth and many other things, these are all acceptable things to see in fanfiction. This allows both the fans, who read the fanfiction, and the stories authors themselves to explore whatever desires they might have while still being connected to a character they already have a strong connection to.

In Audre Lorde’s, Uses of the Erotic: The Erotic as a Power, she talks about how women use the erotic as a source of power for their unexpressed or unrecognized feelings.  In her essay she states,

“The erotic is a measure between the beginnings of our sense of self and the chaos of our strongest feelings. It is an internal sense of satisfaction to which, once we have experienced it, we know we can aspire. For having experienced the fullness of this depth of feeling and recognizing its power, in honor and self-respect we can require no less of ourselves”.

This relates perfectly to what these writers do when they write their stories.  Both writers and readers alike, search within their-self to what their desires are that they have yet to try out for whatever reason, and put their slash characters through it so people are able to experience it.  This then enables the writes and readers to know what they like and do not like specifically through characters in the cult television shows that they watch.

Archive of Our Own

Archive of Our Own, or AO3 as it is know by its users, is a website that allows fans from all cultures, places, and fandoms post their creative works for all users to enjoy. This website is fan-created and run by a non-profit organization called Organization for Transformative Works, where they work to legitimize all fan works over many media.

Screen Shot 2015-10-25 at 8.53.19 PM

(symbol associated with AO3 from their website)

AO3 is a safe space for all writes and readers alike to share their works and enjoy outside the world or normative culture. This space allows everyone on it to express and explore feelings and situations they may never experience in the real world. This website contains fan fiction, or fics, that mainly consist of male/male or female/female pairings participating in any and all alternate universes, AUs, and any sex act truly imaginable. AO3 houses fics from all TV shows, movies, bands, anime, book, celebrities, ect with all the writers writing to their specific fandom. The writers on this site play out stories of fictional characters that have their own storyline, and change it by making them do whatever the author wants them to in order to explore things that cannot happen in the real world for that person. The amazing part of this website is that the only way one knows about it, is if you are involved in a fandom and like to read fics based on your favorite characters in that specific fandom; it is every fans little secret.

The website has a tagging system, that helps organize and give warning to anything that is to come in all the fics on the website. Thus making it easier to find, or steer clear of, a specific topic that is happening in a fic. This tagging system helped me find two fics to look at more closely.

Screen Shot 2015-10-25 at 8.53.07 PM

(Tagging system found on AO3 to organize and heed warring as to what is to come in the fic)

The first work is called Misbehaving For Days by secondstar for the Teen Wolf fandom. The biggest pairing of characters in this fandom is that of Derek Hale and Stiles Stilinski and this fic is set in the AU that contains werewolves.

Screen Shot 2015-10-25 at 10.30.56 PM

(Left: Actor Dylan O’Brian who plays Stiles Stilinski on Teen wolf)

(Right: Actor Tyler Hoechlin who pays Derek Hale on Teen wolf)

This fic also contains heavy aspects of BDSM, which was the main reason for including it. This story follows the show Teen Wolf, only slightly because the same characters that are involved in the show are present and there are still werewolves, other then that the fic is different.

As Sigmund Freud stated in his work Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality, that a perversion are sexual activities that extend past the anatomical sense. Thus meaning that the only sexual activity that is a true sex act involves only the body parts that are made specifically for copulation. So in essence, the fact that two men are having intercourse falls under the category of a perversion based by Freud.

Another example of a perversion based on Freud’d definition is in the second chapter of this fic, where Stiles fucks Derek’s mouth until it lead to his orgasm. This would not count as a sexual activity, because even though one character comes to a climax, a mouth, which falls outside the category of a sex act, brought it about.

In the sequel of this fic called, Already on My Knees by secondstar, there are heavier aspects of BDSM found as compared to its previous fic. There is a scene in the third chapter of this fic, were Derek beats the shit out of Stiles’s ass and thighs because he needed some time where he did not have to think at all. The pain that Stiles felt during that was not a bad kind of pain, it was a pleasurable pain that he got off on. Thus making it clearly apparent that Stiles falls under the category of a masochist. In Freud’s work, he considers this to be the most common and significant perversion found in our world.  There are may other examples throughout these two stories that are great examples to compare against Freud and his work, but these are just a few.


(Disclaimer **** All rights reserved to the writer of the fic used and I do not own any rights the characters used in the fic or TV show)

Kent Monkman and Miss Chief

Kent Monkman is an artist from Canada that has an ancestry of Cree Native Americans. He works with a variety of mediums such as: paintings, film, and performance. His works are modern interpretations of Native Americans in today’s culture, with a heavy focus on the Two Spirit traditions that the Native Americans have. A reoccurring character in Kent’s portfolio is that of Miss Chief Eagle Testickle, which is Kent’s drag queen alter ego. I believe that this is a great addition to the archive because not only are there no posts about Two Spirit traditions, but there is also a great representation of queer culture in his paintings.   One can almost always find a representation of one or both represented in Kent’s paintings.

Miss Chief, the drag queen alter ego of Kent, is depicted throughout many of his paintings. Miss Chief is a two-spirit person, in Native American culture this means that the person believes that their spirit is both male and female and the person fulfills both those gender roles in their tribe. Their appearance generally depicts a more masculine or feminine version of themselves. In Miss Chief’s case, it is the outward appearance of a female but the outward genitalia of a male.

Kent Monkman 1

(Kent Monkman – The Trapper’s Bride – 2006 – acrylic on canvas)


In the picture above, on the back of the horse in the middle of the painting is Miss Chief. On can tell, as you look over Miss Chief’s body, there are both male and female aspects to it. The male parts being the very defined muscles and sharp facial features that Miss Chief possesses. The female attributes are a bit easier to detect on Miss Chief, there are the heels on her feet, the long hair with the ribbon in it, and the long black dress she is wearing.

Kent Monkman 2

(Kent Monkman – Study for Artist and Model – 2003 – acrylic on canvas)


In this painting Miss Chief is depicted in the lower right-hand corner of the picture. Miss Chief is painting the exposed man that is against the tree that she shot at.   One can tell that it was Miss Chief who shot at the man, because hooked on the easel in the middle of the painting are arrows with pink feathers on them, these match the arrows that are in the mans body in the bottom left of the painting. Miss Chief is wearing a headdress that is generally seen worn by the Chief of the tribe, but is also wearing pink stilettos, pink covering over the exposed testicles, and Miss Chiefs arrow sheath has the Louis Vuitton monogramed cover on it. This depicts both the male and female parts that make up Miss Chief.

Miss Chief is a lot like the Indian woman depicted in “Coyote Takes a Trip” by Deborah Miranda. In this short story, Coyote is taking the bus down to Venice, as he tries to get his mojo back, where he encounters three old women. He pays no mind to two of them but the third, the Indian he takes a fancy to. He describes this woman in great detail about what her hands looked like, that her skin was wrinkly but not too much, that her makeup was well put on and not too heavy. While he was staring at her, he almost missed his stop, which caused him to get up in a rush and inadvertently his pants fell down. Once righted and off the bus, the two other ladies were laughing and talking about him, and he noticed that the Indian lady was giving him the eye. That then, was when he realized that the lady he thought was a lady was in fact a man.  In this short story and in Kent Monkman’s paintings, the two-spirit individual is hard to pinpoint without having analyzed the works thoroughly. In both the two-spirit character is hidden well and unless you know about two-spirit traditions it is hard to pick out.