Adjacent Ship

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Trope · Genre
Synonyms: Adjacent Pairing
Related: Kylux
See Also:
Tropes · Slash Tropes · Tropes by Fandom
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An Adjacent Ship takes the actors who portray the characters in a popular ship, and pairs other characters played by those same characters. The characters paired in an adjacent ship are very rarely from the same source material/fandom.

This term arose in the Star Wars sequel trilogy fandom, where characters in the popular (and controversial) ship Kylux were portrayed by Domhnall Gleeson and Adam Driver. Following Adam Driver's appearance on SNL as Matt the Radar Technician, fanfiction featuring Matt appeared and began pairing him with Clan Techie, Gleeson's character from Dredd. This ship was only the first Kylux adjacent pairing. Clyde Logan/Stensland is another very popular Kylu adjacent ship, but there are many others.

On Ao3 Kylux writers tagged their works with all fandoms involved, including the original Star Wars fandom. They also commonly added relationship tags for Kylux and the adjacent ship, and refer to these works as Kylux adjacent in freeform tags. As the concept of adjacent ships has moved to other fandoms, many writers are tagging their works in the same way. Ao3 wranglers often canonize the adjacent ship tag as Character Combinations.

Fan Comments

On the Hannibal Extended Universe, a similar trend in Hannigram fanfiction:

I’m currently reading for the Hannibal TV fandom, and I noticed an interesting trend of fanfictions. Under the tag of usually ‘Hannibal Extended Universe,’ there are over 700 crossover fanfictions for the movie Charlie Countryman and another movie called Adam. Mads Mikkelsen, the actor who plays Hannibal, stars as Nigel in Charlie Countryman and Hugh Dancy, who plays Will Graham, stars as Adam in Adam. Almost all these fics ship them together. Writers and fans call this ship Spacedogs—for reasons that are apparent when you know the plots of the movies. I have never seen a fandom delve so deeply into the extended universe of the actors without involving RPF. I was just wondering if anyone else has noted a similar trend in any other fandom.
Star Wars has a thing called "adjacent ships" (I don't think this is the most accurate terminology, but whatever, that's what they call it) I think it started because of all the SNL skits Adam Driver is in. The whole Matt the Radar Technician thing.[1]

Example Fanworks

Examples Wanted: Editors are encouraged to add more examples or a wider variety of examples.


Archives & Fannish Links


  1. ^ Original post and comment on 'Fandom extending out of original universe' on /r/fanfiction, July 01 2020
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