"I won't marry Jo to Laurie to please anyone."A lot of fans are rooting for this couple to get together. A lot. Way more than they are for any conceivable alternative. And it is not happening. Unrelated discussions degenerate into Ship-to-Ship Combat involving them. Fan-Art of them embracing passionately is everywhere. Threads dedicated to gushing over their sweet, fluffy, legendary love and scorching hatred of anyone in the way dominate forums. Bits of trivia are cited and Word of God is creatively interpreted to show that they are going to happen. The Official Couple they're breaking up gets only three votes in fan support polls, possibly including one vote cast by a very alarmed author. They are a phenomenon shrouded in infamy. And still yet, in spite of it all, they are not happening. Certainly not now, and probably not ever. A subreaction of Better Than Canon. Most often the result of a Romantic False Lead Gone Horribly Right due to Emotional Torque critical mass, but sometimes happens by design or because fandoms just make no sense. Often, but not always, involves disregarding a competing Official Couple with extreme prejudice. Can eventually lead to an Author's Saving Throw or a Writer Revolt. The highest aspiration of a Fan-Preferred Couple is to beat the odds and evolve into an Official Couple. This is about the only way the same couple can end up being both of these things.
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When left alone, this page very quickly decays into its natural state of equilibrium: Everyone listing huge Walls of Text about their favorite ships. We don't want that. Here are some guidelines for what examples you put on this page and how.
- No listing pairings that are less popular than rival pairings. Yes, this means it's not a Fan-Preferred Couple if the Official Couple is more fan-preferred than it.
- No listing two different pairings with the same character in them, unless you have a very good explanation of how they can both be the most popular at the same time.
- Give us specifics. Saying "some fans think it should happen" gives us zero information. The Other Wiki has a lot to say about that.
- Keep it short and to the point. Lapsing into speculation of what in canon set this reaction off is all right, but don't give us a plot summary.
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- In The Vampire Diaries story "To Build A Home", reviewers preferred Stephanie with Klaus rather than her canon love interest Jeremy. The fact that they dated in the past (despite her not remembering it) factors in.
- In Child of the Storm, while neither of these pairings has come about, fans have vocally called for Harry Potter/Carol Danvers, on the grounds of the considerable chemistry the two share despite their mutual insistence that they are Just Friends, over the Word of God stated original plan of Harry/Ginny. While the author has been enigmatic about the former, the latter has been confirmed to have been removed, as part of a raft of grand scale changes to the future of the story.
- The story also manifests an example of this trope, with a strong Bucky/Natasha dynamic woven in, despite the fact that the fic as a whole is heavily based on the Marvel Cinematic Universe, with not even a tiny bit of Bruce/Natasha chemistry (despite it being MCU canon).
- Relatively early on, the author created a poll out of curiosity to see who fans would prefer Harry to be with. Jean Grey won by a clear margin, with Emma Frost and Hermione Granger not far behind, tied in second place. Based on Word of God, Harry's not going to be paired with any of them - Jean Grey is his cousin and Cool Big Sis, though a letter written by a version of Harry from the future notes that she's 'disconcertingly attractive' and pretty definitely shipped with Scott Summers, Emma Frost and Harry are stated not to get on at all and the narration has on more than one occasion noted that Harry very rarely notices that Hermione is female and is 'about as attracted to her as he is to mould'.
- A more recently released poll confirmed that Harry/Carol is the most popular possible choice, but also showed that Harry/Diana was a very close second.
- Despite being a killer, burned dream-demon, many readers of Tainted Dreams would rather see Helyse being with Freddy Krueger than with Jonathan. AnaShadowWolf (the author) went so far as make a poll during the fic to know with whom the readers wanted to see Helyse with. Freddy won. By a large margin.
- In Suzumiya Haruhi no Seitenkan, the gender-swapped version of The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, will pair the canon's Kyon with his Distaff Counterpart, Kyonko. While the ship passes under the radar of fans of the regular series, it stands out that at least half the fan fics of the genderswap features Kyonko with Kyon.
- A Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt and Naruto crossover called Angels and Ninjas has many reviewers wanting a Naruto/Stocking pairing rather than Naruto/Panty and Sasuke/Stocking note due to the fact that Naruto and Stocking obviously have better chemistry, spend a considerable amount of time together, get along better than Naruto does with Panty and Stocking does with Sasuke and that's not even mentioning the fact they share a bed.
- Happens In-Universe in the South of Nowhere story Romance on the Set. Spencer was originally cast as the main character Mandy's love interest, but fans of the show preferred Mandy with the Perky Goth Rachel instead.
- Weiss Reacts: Fans wanted Ruby and Weiss to get together in Volume 1, knowing that the author was also a fan of the couple, which they end up doing, upgrading it to the Official Couple.
- Advice And Trust has a large and vocal fan contingent that actually quite likes the idea of Asuka and Shinji giving Rei the "Israfel Special".