Suicide in Fanworks

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This page is about suicide in fanworks. For the phenomenon of faking one's own death online, see Pseuicide.
Tropes and genres
Related tropes/genresIssuefic, Deathfic
Related articles on Fanlore.

Suicide in fan works can run the gamut from a deep and thorough exploration of the subject and what can cause the desire to end one's life, to a cheap excuse for drama or shock value.

One other use is the heroic suicide, usually in action-oriented fandoms. This is when a character defiantly ends their own life rather than see a loved one subjected to a sadistic choice, or rather than falling into the enemy's hands.

Suicide can be a trigger for some fans and is often, though not always, warned for.

As Portrayed in Fanworks

Suicide as a shipping plot device

Many shippers will use suicide or suicide attempts for their shipping agenda. In the latter case, one half of their OTP will find the other about to off themselves and save them by confessing their love, or at least talking them down and hugging them without the use of a love confession. In the former case, unrequited love will lead a character to end their life, thinking they'd rather die than live without someone's love. The object of their affections will find out and feel guilty for either never noticing that person loved them, or for choosing another person as their significant other.

A lesser known example is when one half of a couple dies tragically and their lover will kill themselves to be with them again.

Attempted Suicide

Completed Suicide

An Attack Meant to Look Like Suicide

Fandom Specific

In Star Trek: TOS

From Boldly Writing, Joan Verba comments about what she saw as a prevalence of stories about suicide in Star Trek: TOS., citing an example in the zine Vault of Tomorrow #8:

Among the stories was 'In the Silence of the Sea-Wind Dawn' by Lynn Syck and Laurel Ridener, which was notable because it was representative of a type of story in Star Trek fanzines. Here, Kirk dies; afterward, Spock and McCoy commit suicide. Other fanzine stories repeated this basic plot of Spock dying, and Kirk committing suicide, or vice versa. Between [the movies] Star Trek II and Star Trek III, stories in which Kirk attempted suicide after the death of Spock abounded. I never found, nor was included in, any discussions of why writers wrote this sort of story or why readers wanted to read them, but there certainly were a lot of them around over the years.

In Stargate Atlantis

The characters most often portrayed as suicidal in Stargate Atlantis stories are probably Rodney McKay and John Sheppard. Contributing factors are certain canon events and episodes, John's depiction as being a suicidal risk-taker in canon and fanon[1], and fanon about John and Rodney's respective unhappy childhoods. Two particular Stargate Atlantis episodes have inspired several stories that refer to suicide. Trinity, in which Rodney blows up 5/6ths of a solar system and (for a while) loses John's friendship, led not just to multiple stories in which Rodney attempts to or commits suicide, but gave rise to an entire genre of stories known as the Post-Trinity Phenomenon. The episode Doppelganger, in which an alien entity takes John Sheppard's shape in other people's dreams and not only harms others but persuades expedition psychologist Kate Heightmeyer to commit suicide, led to multiple stories in which the effects of her death are noted, including some in which John contemplates or attempts to commit suicide.

Stargate: Atlantis Example Stories

Other Fandoms

External Links


  1. ^ See, for example, MVP by cesperanza