|Trope · Genre|
|Synonyms:||Male Pregnancy, MPREG, MPreg|
|See Also:||kink, Dominance Hierarchy|
|Tropes · Slash Tropes · Tropes by Fandom|
|Click here for related articles on Fanlore.|
Mpreg, short for male pregnancy, is a plot device in which men (usually cis men but not always) become pregnant.
While occasionally addressed in very early fanworks in the 1980s, it is a genre that was not generally addressed by fans until the mid-to late-1990s.
In canon, mpreg is often explained by alien biology. Alien Nation and Star Trek: Enterprise both have canonical male pregnancy, Torchwood has a reference to it as well, and in Farscape one of the alien male characters accidentally does much of the gestating of John and Aeryn's child.
Mpreg is also a subgenre of fanfiction, occurring with some frequency in slash and only very rarely in het. The man who gets pregnant is usually human and male-bodied, and often the story offers no explanation for the phenomenon, although it may be explained by magic, medical experimentation, or simply the existence of an Alternate Universe where men are commonly pregnant. In some dystopian Mpreg AUs, the role or status of males able to get pregnant may differ markedly from that of impregnating males.
In DC Comics canon Kon-El gets half his genes from Clark Kent and half from Lex Luthor. This leads to some Smallville Clex fic where he is the result of mpreg rather than laboratory experiments. Pinky and the Brain from Animaniacs also have a genetic son together.
Often a Topic of Derision
For non-fans, mpreg, like omegaverse, is an easy topic of derision. Social media and mainstream journalism lights up on the subject, poking fun and claiming out-raged amazement.
Mpreg is a rather polarizing genre even within fandom: Whereas some fans really like it, many fans go out of their way to avoid it, and relatively few fans are indifferent to it.A fan in 2015 wrote about the trope from a wider perspective:
It is just so much easier to mock something than to really engage in it. Like, how easy to point out the mpreg trope and be like, “Look at this crazy thing these crazy people are doing.” But mpreg is a really poignant commentary on how the biological fact that women carry children influences every aspect of female life in society. Tweak it so that men can get pregnant, too, and watch how things change: watch how the men are the ones now struggling with the questions that society so seldom demands of them. It breaks my heart, what so many mpreg fics reveal about how girls feel about their place in society. I mean, in Omegaverse, frequently the pregnancy-bearing gender is literally a prisoner of its reproductive function, lamenting the inability to ever lead a life with full freedom of choice, and, in fact, tasked with limiting exposure to the impregnating gender because, hey, they are not to blame if they’re tempted by the irresistible invitation of a baby-depository in their vicinity. 
Fempreg refers not to all stories in which women are pregnant, but to stories in which conception is due to f/f sex. It is almost vanishingly rare and would probably not have a name if it were not for mpreg's popularity. Xena: Warrior Princess has a rare example of canonical fempreg with Callisto's ghost impregnating Xena.
Another example of canonical fempreg occurs in Kotobuki Tarako's mostly mpreg-filled manga Sex Pistols (published in English language as Love Pistols). Madarame Makio, a female character, has given birth to two sons by two different fathers and has also 'fathered' two more sons with her female partner Tokashiki Karen.
Examples of Mpreg in Fanworks
Some of the Earliest Examples
- The Third Alternative by Billie McIver, a 1983 Star Trek: TOS story in which Kirk wants to have a child so he talks Spock into letting McCoy do the procedure that will allow Kirk to carry one. This fanwork appears in The Voice #2.
Misconceptions by Diana Williams -- early, long (60 parts) Highlander AU with Methos becoming pregnant. As Immortals are normally incapable of bearing children, a lot of stories in the fandom tried to figure out ways to give the Immortals children. Sometimes a threesome was required, sometimes the Immortal had to be over several thousand years old, and sometimes...well, things happened. (Started sometime in 2001.)
Practicing the Same Religion by Geoviki. Mpreg is a common Harry Potter trope. "Classic Harry/Draco Mpreg. It's the fic that everyone says, 'I don't usually like/read Mpreg BUT… loved this story!'" (2005)
I Put a Spell on You (Because You're Mine) a Supernatural story by estrella30. She describes it as "schmoopy mpreg-wingfic-incest fic", or in other words, a deliberate attempt to write crackfic and still make people like it. (2006)
Roo'verse by Tzzzz, an SGA mpreg which is unusual in that the biology of the men being able to become pregnant (a subtype of humans attributed to Ancient experimentation) is that of a marsupial, so the pregnancy does not resemble a regular human pregnancy.  (2009)
There has been a resurgence of mpreg stories in Star Trek reboot fandom, with the LJ kirkspock community, alone, recording over 30 stories featuring this trope in the year following the release of the movie. It is likely to be the setting that has caused this upswing in popularity, with a number of writers explaining away the process as either alien biology, or through the use of futuristic technology and medicine. 
Mpreg is not an uncommon trope in Naruto fandom, aided in part by the existence in canon of jutsu such as Naruto's Sexy no Jutsu. Some examples from the KakaIru pairing include: megyal's A Measure of Company (with fanart by jofelly), Kita the Spaz's Mission's Gift, and Side Effects, an early example from ChibiRisu-chan.
- Papa Don't Preach by eunice & greensilver -- a constructed reality Torchwood/Doctor Who vid.
- I Swear by dualbunny, sweetestdrain, and greensilver. Smallville with a bit of Batverse vid.
- A review of mpreg fics in the SGA fandom, by Tzzzz, 05 December 2009. (Accessed 15 December 2009)
- Mpreg Meta by Jane Elliot, 1 January 2011. (Accessed 8 April 2011)
- Slashcast: Pimp My Fandom: Mpreg by Kriken and wook77 at Slashcast, May 27, 2012
- Sexy Pregnant Men?, posted in 2001, "Even if it's tongue in cheek, and even if it's intended to be parody, it's still just so out there that I can't grasp it."
- "Mpreg", thread in Fail Fandomanon post No. 123 - started 27 December 2014 - discussion of appeal
- MPREG - The Male Pregnancy Emporium - old archive, masterlist
- Mpreg Archive Mpreg Archive site
- Mpreg_is_good mailing list
- Mpreg tag at Archive of Our Own
- Supernatural Sam/Dean mpreg masterlist
- RPS Jared Padalecki/Jensen Ackles mpreg masterlist
- Mpreg themed list for Harry Potter, by painless_j
- Luna K's Mpreg Fic Recs for Bandom
- a list of Star Trek Mpreg fiction: Accioslash: Extreme Snarry Hoarder on Insane Journal
- The MPREG Big Bang
- oral history interviews -- Escapade 2012 -- need more advanced citation.
- For further examples of Mpreg in books, movies, television and mythology, see Alchemia's Mainstream MPreg List, 13 June 2008. (Accessed 09 November 2008)
- If You Want to Talk About Something Weird, Let's Talk About Geoducks, Not Fanfiction, by Earl Grey Tea
- Diana Williams. Misconceptions
- crack_broom: Harry/Draco -Practicing the Same Religion by geoviki (accessed 15 July 2013)
- Tzzzz. Roo'verse (accessed 15 Dec 2009)
- mpreg trope tag for stories posted to the LJ kirkspock community
- Unexpected by ceres_libera (following genderswap from alien intervention) Kirk/McCoy
- After It All by slash4femme (genetics, test tube baby + artificial womb) Spock!Prime/McCoy