Two-Up Truly Queered

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Bodie/Doyle Fanfiction
Title: Two-up Truly Queered
Author(s): Jane Carnall
Date(s): 1987
Length:
Genre:
Fandom: The Professionals
External Links: Two-Up Truly Queered

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See also: responsefic, WNGWJLEO

Jane Carnall's circuit story Two-Up Truly Queered is a rewrite of Jane of Australia's circuit story "Two-Up."

"Two-Up" is dated September 1986; "Two-Up Truly Queered" isn't dated, but there are fans who remember seeing it by 1987. Jane Carnall comments in 2005 that she wrote the story "about 15 years ago." [1]

Two-up: the original story

The original story, Jane of Australia's "Two-Up," is a first-time Pros story in which Bodie and Doyle basically play a drunken game of strip coin-toss ("two-up") and discover that they're turning on to each other. After some heavy-duty smooching and admission that they both want to make love, Doyle announces "succinctly" that he's "had a hard day and want[s] to go to bed." Bodie accuses him of being a prick-tease, and Doyle absolutely explodes in rage, flinging Bodie down and sitting on him, yelling, "Don't you ever say that about me! I'm not gay, never was, don't intend to become gay, and the fact that I fancy you could have something to do with the fact that you're my best mate and you're just about the most beautiful physical specimen I've ever seen. Call me a fool, call me a clown, call me old and ugly, if you like, but if you have the idea I'm gay you're vastly mistaken and can go out through that front door and stay out." Bodie shamefacedly apologizes, admitting that he had thought Doyle was leading him on as a joke. Doyle explains that he meant he wanted to get laid in comfort, and they have the requisite great sex and happy ending.

Two-Up, Truly Queered

One can assume from "Two-Up Truly Queered" that Jane Carnall found the story homophobic. (And she's not the only one.) She rewrote it, quoting and summarizing the original story in plain text while adding her own commentary in boldface. At the crucial moment of Doyle's explosion, she interrupted, summarized the story's ending as its author wrote it ("Jane from Australia thinks that Bodie apologized..." etc.), and concluded, "Well, she's wrong. It went this way--" She then provided her own version of the story's ending, in which Bodie reacts quite differently to Doyle's explosion and subsequent explanation.

Context and reaction

"Two-Up" is the story that defines the possible excess of early "we're not gay we just love each other" (WNGWJLEO) fiction. It wasn't all as pretty as the patina of nostalgia and indulgence can make it seem.

The author wrote in 2005:

I wrote Two-Up Truly Queered (now in the Professionals section of my website) about 15 years ago, in response to a Jane of Australia story, "Two-Up".

[snipped]

I read "Two-Up" when I was visiting Ann: got mad: thought of a rebuttal: and when I got home, wrote the rebuttal, which is this story. It could be read as a MST3K'ing of Jane's story, but though it was written in the spirit of mockery, it was primarily written in anger. I've always been an activist, well - for almost as long as I've been out as a lesbian: and one strand of this activism has been to write political slash stories. [2]

Not all fans appreciated Jane Carnell's activism. During one discussion on Virgule-L, the slash mailing list, some fans reported that Jane of Australia was incredibly hurt by the rewrite/attack, and this was one of the reasons she claimed that she withdrew from active fandom in the 1990s.

"Other VL members felt that Jane Carnell had lost their respect because they believed that her rewrite included attacks on Jane of Australia's person and morals. However, some admitted that they never read Jane Carnell's story and were reporting what they had been told by others. A few who had read the story disagreed and felt that Carnell had criticized and rewrote the story, somewhat tongue-in-cheek, but had said nothing personal about JoA. They offered to email copies of both stories to those who were interested in drawing their own conclusions (no idea if anyone took them up on the offer). At the time I thought it sounded as though JoA's feelings were hurt, and her friends naturally took her side, and the rumors of what J.C. had written outpaced the truth as people who hadn't seen the actual story were told about it by other angry people. In other words, a classic case of the distorted fandom phone tree at work."[3]

Further Reading

References

  1. from Jane Carnall at her online journal, February 20, 2005
  2. from Jane Carnall at her online journal, February 20, 2005
  3. Morgan Dawn's personal notes from 1996, accessed October 7, 2014, included with permission.