Lover Revamped: Sexualities and Romance in the Black Dagger Brotherhood and Slash Fan Fiction

Publication year
Extrapolation: A Journal of Science Fiction and Fantasy

The fanfic production originating in Ward’s canon in the main reiterates the heteronormative worldview but in the slash analysed, homoerotic desire is at focus and the sexual ambiguity often connected to the vampire as a literary trope is to an extent reclaimed. The selected slash features the characters Vishous and Butch and particular emphasis in the analyses is on the themes of erasable moments, healing, violence, biting and blood, and virginity and agency: all used in sexual contexts. The slash texts subvert the heteronormative patterns of the canon, in which the male hero gets the female heroine, by their focus on male-male relationships. The texts also subvert the narrative pattern which in the canon is depicted as an emotional journey ending in heterosexual bliss. The slash stories examined are either open-ended or end with a re-negotiation or deferral of the homosexual relationship. That is, there are strong tendencies also in the fanfics examined to question whether the homosexual liaison has a future. It will be argued that generic features of the canon, and how these are interpreted, preclude a completely successful outcome of the same-sex relationship, resulting in homoerotic encounters played out in metaphorical spaces made only temporarily available. (443)