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Shipping Goggles

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This trope is under discussion in the Trope Repair Shop.

"Really the best thing about the smirk is that it demonstrates that literally a single pixel can serve as shipping fuel. It was worth it for that scientific demonstration alone."
Andrew Hussie, on this panel of Homestucknote 

Shipping Goggles is when a viewer interprets the smallest, most ambiguous canonical evidence in favor of their ship of choice, even if said "evidence" is insignificant relative to other evidence, or outright nonexistent. Maybe that glance lasted just a little too long, or that remark in that conversation could be interpreted as innuendo. The ship in question can range from one that seems entirely plausible but doesn't yet have clear canon evidence, right up to a Crack Pairing between characters who are bitter enemies, live in different universes, have never met, or whose sexuality/circumstances makes any relationship between them extremely unlikely. Reasons for putting on Shipping Goggles vary; wishful thinking, to defend the ship against other competing ships, or Just for Fun.

Many shippers would admit to doing this to some extent; having your own interpretation of Canon is part of the fun of Shipping. However, it can become Fan Dumb when people try to force their ships on others. And when such fans are Running the Asylum, things can get messy.

Merely being an implausible pairing doesn't automatically mean that Shipping Goggles are in play, as often a ship's supporters will admit that their support for a particular pairing has nothing to do with the source material. The goggles are used to reinterpret Canon events in was to promote or discourage character couples. While this usually goes hand-in-hand with goggles in favor of the fan's couple of choice, occasionally it is just simply aimed against a couple in general. Caution should be used not to confuse every case of LGBT Fanbase Gaydar as Shipping Goggles — if fans believe a character is gay, it is not necessarily because fans want to ship them.

A subtrope of Epileptic Trees. Creators aware of their fans' Shipping Goggles can play to it with a Ship Tease; this can be interpreted as Fanservice or just cruelty in suggesting a relationship that isn't going to materialize. Sometimes, the shipper turns out to be right. Other times... Examples of character shipping belong on one of the other Shipping Tropes pages, like Crack Pairing. If an in-universe character is wearing a set, that's Shipper on Deck.

Shipping Goggles are available on Trope Co.

No examples, please. This only defines the term.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Yuri Goggles, Anti Shipping Goggles


Annie/Jeff and Abed/Pierce

Annie points out that she and Jeff have had chemistry all year. Cue clip show of romantic moments between them, in slow motion and set to a love song. Jeff argues that you can cherrypick interactions between any two characters and frame it as romantic: cue a similar clip show featuring the unlikely pairing of Abed and Pierce.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (10 votes)

Example of:

Main / ShippingGoggles

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