|Alternative name(s):||Marcy/Paul, PaulxMarcy, MarcyxPaul, etc.|
|Prevalence:||Popular within the Cabin Fever fandom.|
|Click here for related articles on Fanlore.|
Paul/Marcy is a pairing in the Cabin Fever fandom between Paul and Marcy. They are a canon pairing, in that they did have a very brief sexual relationship in both the original Cabin Fever and the 2016 remake. However, the canon basis of their relationship is so brief that most fanworks can't help but expand the scope of it into non-canonical territory.
Their on-screen pairing is noteworthy for having little - if any - romantic overtones; it is plain and simply a casual, physical relationship, and an extremely fleeting one at that. In both versions, it is portrayed very much as a 'pairing of convenience' : Paul became Marcy's lover simply because there were no other potential partners available when she sought to console herself through sex.
Fandom interest in the pair stems mostly from the passionate chemistry they displayed during their brief time together, and the fact that the characters' deaths shortly after their one and only encounter has created an open field for fan speculation about what direction their relationship would've taken had they survived.
Most fandom material maintains the predominantly sexual nature of their relationship and eschews any overt suggestions of romance. Though elements of friendship and moral support coinciding with their sexual relationship are reasonably commonplace. For this reason, virtually all fanworks tend to be Erotic/Smut in nature.
Interest in Paul and Marcy sprung up very quickly after the original film's release. Posts in the now-defunct Cabin Fever website's forums spurred discussions about whether or not Paul and Marcy would've had any relationship beyond their single sexual encounter, had they both survived the events of the film.
Not all fans view Paul and Marcy's pairing favorably. The pairing has had critics from the very beginning. Marcy has been maligned numerous times for instigating the affair during a serious crisis and for what some consider a callous attitude before, during and after. Paul has also met with some harsh criticism, particularly for abandoning his prospective romance with Karen.
Before the collapse of IMDB's forum system, Paul and Marcy's relationship was a recurring topic of discussion on the Cabin Fever board, and had several dedicated threads.
Common Tropes in Fanworks
- Fix It: Virtually all non-AU fanfictions will do this, namely by retconning Paul and Marcy's deaths shortly after they sleep together. Without avoiding their deaths, it would be difficult to frame a fanwork within the brief space of time that occurs after they slept together.
- Alternate Universe: The other main method for avoiding the constrictions imposed by Paul and Marcy's deaths in the movies is to write-out the circumstances that caused them entirely. AU fics are able to take on a more positive tone as they aren't bound by the macabre elements that carry over from the movies into the canon-based works.
- Hurt/Comfort: A very common element in all Paul/Marcy fanworks, just as it is a defining element of the canon depictions of their relationship. In the absence of any romantic chemistry, a strong emotional factor, such as Hurt/Comfort or Angst, is typically needed to initiate, or reignite their relationship in fanworks.
- Angst: See Hurt/Comfort.
- One Night Stand: The nature of their canon relationship, this trope predictably carries over into just about every fanwork, to at least some degree.
- Darkfic: The Cabin Fever movies are uncompromisingly gory films. Dark fanworks are to be expected.
- Unsafe Sex: Was a noteworthy aspect of the canon pairing. Not surprisingly, it often carries over into fanworks.
- Catchphrase: The brief mid-coital dialog from the canon pairing:
Paul: You don't use condoms?is grafted into much of the fandom. It's considered to be an important demonstration of the impulsive and heedless nature of their relationship. AU fanworks often carry the direct quote over to replicate the spirit of their relationship even when the circumstances differ.
Marcy: Don't worry. I'm healthy.
- Catchphrase: The brief mid-coital dialog from the canon pairing:
- First Time: Occurs often, specifically regarding Paul. The films, especially the original, hints that he may not have lost his virginity by the time Marcy seduces him. Rarely, if ever, applied to Marcy. Canonically, Marcy had already been in at least one sexual relationship before sleeping with Paul. Even if this relationship is retconned out of a fanwork, Marcy is generally implied to be a highly promiscuous character who would be unlikely to retain her virginity until pairing up with Paul.
- Pregnancy: A common trope that builds on the sense of recklessness in their canon pairing. The original film has a brief exchange where Paul expresses concerns about not wearing a condom and Marcy dismisses them. Fan works based on this sex scene (or a similarly-reckless reimagining of it) will sometimes have the union produce an unintended offspring.
- Abortion: Typically at least discussed in Pregnancy stories. Marcy is not generally conveyed as being the motherly type.
- Shotgun Wedding: Usually without the wedding. In lieu of any significant romantic chemistry, having a lovechild from their one night stand is sometimes used by fanworks to explain Paul and Marcy's ongoing presence in one another's lives, when they would otherwise have no inclination to remain in close contact with one another.
- Who's The Father?: Plays off Marcy's previous relationship with Jeff, or her characterization as a highly promiscuous woman, to create tension and doubt about the origin of her pregnancy. Paul is the most common character afflicted with paternity doubts, but the baby's paternity can also be uncertain to the reader, Jeff and even Marcy herself.
- Old Shame: The original film in particular implies that they quickly develop regrets about their impulsive pairing. Understandably, this dynamic can carry over into fanworks.
- Cabin Fever: Parting Shot by HeatAndChills. An erotic AU fic filled with saucy drunken antics and plenty of social drama, all building to a wild, random hook-up between the most unlikely pair. Based on the premise that vacation from the films played out without being interrupted by any of the gruesome elements from the canon.
- Cabin Fever Sketches by BornFreak (Jul 2016). Rated Mature.
- Cabin Fever - YOLO Love (Paul x Marcy Tribute) by Heat & Chills (Oct 2016). A tribute music vid.
- WE ARE ALL SICK by Luca Severini. An fan reenactment of Paul & Marcy's love scene from the remake.
Links & Resources
- Marcy/Paul (Cabin Fever) tag at Archive of Our Own
- Shipper Manifesto: Paul/Marcy (Cabin Fever) by heatandchills (2016)
- PaulMarcy on the Shipping Wiki
- The fact that they had sex is canon. However any relationship that extends beyond their one night stand is non-canonical.
- The remake has been noted to convey suggestions of budding romance that the original did not.
- Cabin Fever: Tha Movie @ Proboards - Paul and Marcy