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Pairing: Jane Rizzoli/Maura Isles
Alternative name(s): Jane/Maura, Rizzoli/Isles, Rizzles
Gender category: femslash
Fandom: Rizzoli & Isles
Canonical?: non-canon
Prevalence: fandom OTP
Archives: AO3 FFN
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Rizzoli/Isles, also known by pairing name Rizzles, is the pairing of Detective Jane Rizzoli and Medical Examiner Maura Isles from the Rizzoli & Isles fandom.

It is the juggernaut ship in the fandom, appearing in a majority of works on Archive of Our Own and FanFiction.Net, and prompting much discussion throughout the show's run about whether they were an endgame couple.


Rizzoli/Isles gained a lot of popularity after the show aired and is considered to be "practically canon" by the fans due to their close relationship.

Some of the same story-lines or beats that fans felt were commonplace in police procedural (or adjacent) shows with canonical het relationships — such as in Bones or Castle — seemed to be present in Rizzoli & Isles, leading to some fans believing that their presence was subtextual indication that the pairing would become canon. Subtext reviews of the show were common-place, during and after it aired.

In 2024, the pairing remains a popular, not just in the Rizzoli and Isles fandom, but in femslash fandom generally. As of April 2024, there are 7,300+ works with Rizzoli and Isles as the primary character on Fanfiction.net (not all of them have Rizzoli/Isles as a pairing as the pairings feature weren't added until 2013, however many of these works are Rizzles-focused) and 2,152 works in the Archive of Our Own tag for the pairing, with both sites having new works posted in 2024. The pairing's tag on social media platforms like Tumblr remains active.


Rizzoli/Isles is a notorious examples of queerbaiting, and gained a reputation for such within femslash fandoms. Particularly notorious is the fourth promo that appeared for Season 2 of the show. In it Rizzoli and Isles go through a series of speed dates with men before realizing that the only person perfect for them is each other. In 2013, the showrunners and cast admitted they were guilty of queerbaiting in an interview with TVGuide.

Reversatility noted in their piece "Femslash Fandoms and Queer-baiting: Another Perspective" that fans of the pairing felt a negative attitude shift from TPTB over time:

The main point I want to make here is that Rizzoli & Isles is the most egregious queer-baiting offender I know. Rose at Autostraddle wrote thoughtfully about queer-baiting a couple of weeks ago (On Queerbaiting and Misha’s Comments at NJCon) and I agree with the gist of that piece that queer-baiting isn’t simply the presence of homoerotic subtext in a show, but the intentional courting of queer viewers coupled with a “No Homo, Man!” disclaimer when questioned about the same-sex romantic possibilities. I can’t catalog all the ways that R&I has indulged in these tactics, but the show's marketing – the speed-dating promo for Season 2 and the Season 4 Bound for Life poster where Jane and Maura are cuffed together – are two examples which clearly tease a romantic/sexual relationship, yet we have showrunner Janet Tamaro and both actors repeatedly declaring that the characters are straight. As for how they address R&I’s significant queer female following, the tone nowadays comes across as less respectful than it did initially, and a whole lot more like “We find it hilarious, but sure, go for it, you naughty horny lesbians!”


Rizzlescon was a fan-run convention centered around Rizzoli & Isles and the pairing Rizzoli/Isles. The con was slated to have many of the cast and crew from the show appear as guests, however all guests, bar Tess Gerritsen, canceled on short notice. The cancellation was thought to be due to the focus on Rizzoli/Isles as a pairing.

Common Tropes, Fanon and Headcanons

  • Friends to Lovers - Many Rizzoli/Isles fanworks are closely canon-compatible, often building off of the pre-existing scenes, dialogue and events but simply going in a femslash direction rather than the direction the show ultimately ended in. As a result, their canonical friendship usually features strongly, growing into a romantic relationship through the works' events.
  • Case Fic - Many fanworks also build on Rizzoli and Isles relationship over the course of a case, which could easily fit into the style of police procedural show that Rizzoli & Isles is.
  • Alternate Universe - Other fan authors and artists take the characters of the show into very different universes and some of these are particularly popular or widely recommended, such as 'Calamity Jane Meets Dr Isles, Medicine Woman' (below).

Notable Fanworks



Fan vids

Song Vids


Archives and Communities


Further Information and Reading