So you like a television show which features a male character named Bob who has (or seems to have) subtle sexual tension with another male character, Charlie. Bob's a Big Guy who takes no guff from anyone and will pull a gun on anyone who deserves it. You like the show, so you idly open up a Fan Fic by some author named YaoiGrrl33 and—huh? The ass-kicking character you liked so much has consummated his sexual attraction with Charlie, but in the process he has somehow become a submissive Non-Action Guy. Bob is now prone to Luminescent Blushes and shaky sighs whenever Charlie so much as looks at him, gives hesitant and protracted confessions about past traumas, and, when he finally does shoot someone — to save Charlie's life — drops his gun and breaks down crying.
Congratulations: you've just seen Wimpification at work.
Similar to Chickification, this is the trope in which a Fan Fic writer depicts a character as more vulnerable (physically and emotionally) than he is in canon, usually in order to facilitate a sexual relationship with another character of the same sex. Unlike the Hurt/Comfort Fic, where the writer breaks Bob with trauma so that Charlie can comfort him, these fics give no justification for Bob's drastic personality change, except perhaps a Hand Wave. Further, these fics omit or downplay the 'comfort' upward-trend of the Hurt-Comfort plot — Bob never fully regains his independence and will always need Charlie to be his dominant, assertive Seme.
Tropes Are Tools and this may be done well (or at least subtly enough so as not to jar the reader). One way is to explore a character's existing, canonically established flaws and foibles. Another way is to put Bob and Charlie through the emotional wringer, letting them build their relationship on more or less equal footing while keeping the vulnerability which drives this trope. Unfortunately, most fics which deploy this trope play it similarly to Chickification: they get the desired relationship by making Bob inexplicably need Charlie instead of taking the time to put them together plausibly.
While some see this trope as a comment on how two men can't form a couple without one becoming the "woman," Wimpification in a same-sex pairing shows up about as frequently as Chickification does in fics where the central relationship is heterosexual. This suggests that the trope's prevalence has less to do with Unfortunate Implications regarding gay relationships and more to do with fetishistic fantasy-fulfillment centered around the sexual exploitation of a vulnerable character. (Because that makes things SO much better).
This trope is loaded with potential Unfortunate Implications, mostly by insinuating a correlation between masculinity and positional preference in bed. In layman's terms, this trope can create the impression that "real men don't take it in the ass" and "taking it in the ass makes you a lesser man."
In drawn fanworks, comics or doujinshi where the artist depicts the characters using a different/stylized art style than what is used canonically or in most other fanworks - particularly one you have never seen before or where all the characters look different from what you are familiar with - this trope is not present unless the character in question is either acting Out of Character in a Wimpification manner and/or is drawn much smaller and more feminine than the other characters. A drawing style where everyone is similarly different is not this trope. Please keep this in mind.
Anime fans refer to this process as ukefication (see Uke).
Subtrope of Out of Character. See Adaptational Wimp for non Slash Fic or gender related version of this. Compare Badass Decay, for when a character becomes a wimp within a single work. Compare Aggressive Submissive.
- Fanfic based from Anime and Manga
- Fanfic based from Live Action TV
- Fanfic based from Video Games
- Fanfic based from Western Animation
- Any even slightly feminine (or even just less masculine/shorter than the designated partner) character is almost guaranteed to be put through this repeatedly. Heck, even the super manly characters will probably be subject to this at least once as part of a subversion or gag, this trope is just that common.
- While a lot of Yaoi manga are written clearly for PWP and/or Smut purposes with wildly typical (and ridiculous) stereotypes amongst the characters, some generally well-written or at least intriguing BL manga might, in a clumsy stroke of depiction, mismanage the personality of the character designated as the "uke/neko/bottom," transforming him from a strong/quirky/interesting independent character to a weepy generic Moe-blob in (and worse, out) of bed once he and his love interest get together.
- Minotaur's Sex Tips For Slash Writers has this to say about it:
One thing to be wary of is writing one partner as the "wife". Men, even gay men, are trained to be less emotionally open, less demonstrative. Yes, we do feel, and even occasionally cry, but gay men are every bit as emotionally closeted as their straight counterparts. Think of all the troubles you have in your relationships with men, and then double them. Instead of just one partner being distant, uncommunicative and emotionally stunted, both are.
- Fics set in an "Omegaverse" pretty much do this by default — make Bob an Omega to Charlie's Alpha and he'll not only be smaller and more vulnerable but he'll periodically go into heat (yes, really) and need Charlie to fix his problem. For bonus points, he can even get pregnant from the experience.
- As screwy as it sounds, Rorschach often gets the raw end of the deal because of the "yaoi rule of height", with contributing factors such as traits like his fondness of sugar note , social and sexual reclusiveness note , and tendency to make inhuman growls note .
- Although every one of the X-Men has had this happen to them at some point or other, losing all identity in the face of the sheer, unmitigated studliness of Wolverine, probably the worst victim is Gambit. 60-70% of all X-Men slash is Logan/Remy, painting the latter as submissive, cringing, or all-around pathetic. While he canonically has moments of Angst, the slash fanbase enjoys cranking that Up to Eleven in fiction. And it's not limited to slash.
- Even Wolverine isn't exempt from ukefication at times. Take, for instance, a fanfic of Beast/Wolverine, which eventually renders Wolverine's inner animal totally submissive towards his pack alpha. Beast, resident Gentle Giant Genius Bruiser, is now of course willing to jam it into Wolverine without using any lube in order to put him in his place.
- Even Sabretooth gets this.
- Nightcrawler, for reasons as obvious as Legolas from LOTR, tends to fall victim of this in fan fiction. While Kurt has shown that he's capable of being a badass in canon, in the land of fan fiction, especially when shipped with Wolverine, he plays the role of a damsel in distress who has to depend on Logan to get him out of a jam.
- Cyclops too, especially when paired with Wolverine, but it is also a big theme in the growing number of fanworks that pair him with Captain America. Although to the writers' credit they do mix it up with him; they tend to expand on the traits he shows in canon (read: Ambiguous Disorder) to try to make him seem more innocent, especially in the realm of sex, which normally takes the form of him not understanding that provoking the homophobic mutant haters by flirting is a bad idea. This stops making sense when in the narrative of the story he is outright mentioned as having slept with other men.
- Superman in megamatt09 fanfic "Girl of Steel" is turned into a mopey ball of angst who becomes useless when he loses his powers and whose whining gets on Kara, Lois and Chloe's nerves.
- Tony Stark whenever he's paired with Steve Rogers. People seem to forget that though he may be something of a Woobie, he's a Jerkass Woobie and a Jerk with a Heart of Gold. It doesn't help that in the Alternate Universe, where they do end up canonically together, Tony was Natasha Stark.
It's pretty easy to tell which side a Steve/Tony slashfic falls on by figuring out whether the fic's implication is a) Tony briefly dropping his canon control-freak persona is a huge, jaw-dropping deal that shows how special Steve is to him, or the fic's implication is that b) Tony must have a natural Uke-ish personality all the time (inexplicably hand-waving his canon control freak tendencies). Choice b) obviously requires a lot of canon warping.
- The opposite also happens, (mostly in the movie fandom) with Steve being portrayed as a shy, sexually inexperienced boy scout who needs Tony to teach him how to 'fondue'.
- To be fair, for movie continuity at least the "virginal" portion of that is probably true ...
- The opposite also happens, (mostly in the movie fandom) with Steve being portrayed as a shy, sexually inexperienced boy scout who needs Tony to teach him how to 'fondue'.
- In Bruce Wayne/Dick Grayson fics, Dick gets hit by this trope fairly frequently. This phenomena is unique in that it manages to be both a pretty justified-by-canon characterization and full-fledged Fridge Horror at the same time. You see, Dick did have this sort of personality and this sort of emotional dynamic with Bruce. In fact, he's had it for most of his existence (since 1940!). The problem? The period in his lifetime where Dick had this sort of dynamic with Bruce was when he was Robin, i.e. underage. Cue Squick.
- Just about every single male member of the Bat-Family has fallen victim of this. Even Red Hood.
- Happens to Kirk in Star Trek (2009), though it's not unexpected. Chekov gets this constantly, no matter who he's shipped with.
- In District 9 Slash Fic (what little there is), Wikus is generally turned from a mentally unstable and violent Half-Human Hybrid to a scared little kitten who quickly abandons his smoking-hot wife for a seven foot tall grasshopper, and may or may not mother its children.
- Sometimes in The Dark Knight Saga fanfiction, Jonathan Crane/Scarecrow — who is most pleased while torturing mental patients or verbally stomping everyone else in the room — becomes weirdly effeminate. And wimpy. And willing to lick dirt off his partner's shoes. Huge insult to him and to women. Really, just because the guy's scrawny doesn't mean he's not a power-hungry, self-respecting villain. Probably has to do with Batman pulling his hair in Batman Begins. Fic writers liked the imagery so much, they decided that Scarecrow liked it too. Well, that and the fact that Cillian Murphy is a very good-looking person.
- Fortunately, a more enlightened individual documented a rather creative response.
- Fans of The A-Team seem to forget that the members of the titular team are all highly trained Army Rangers, especially when theres a change for some hurt/comfort in a story. Face and Murdock are usually the ones who suffer the worst of this. Both Face and Murdock have canon backgrounds that render them especially vulnerable to this trope. Face is almost always portrayed in these situations as a young soldier in order to avoid accusations of being Out of Character, while Murdock is often seen at the mercy of his unspecified mental illness, and some iterations of this are actually accepted as Fanon. However, some highly dedicated fanfic writers have even been witnessed making Hannibal their preferred target for Wimpification.
- Professor Charles Xavier, thanks to being played by the very pretty James McAvoy in X-Men: First Class, more often than not plays Uke to Erik Lehnsherr.
- Marvel Cinematic Universe:
- Similar to his comic book counterpart, after Captain America: The First Avenger premiered, it's become fairly common nowadays in Marvel movie fics to depict Steve Rogers — who in movie canon tells bullies to shut up in theaters, gets into fights all the time, talks back to Nazi super soldiers like Red Skull, risks a court martial to do the right thing, immediately assumes a word shared between his Love Interest and another guy is a dirty sexual innuendo, leads the Howling Commandos in WWII, and vows a Roaring Rampage of Revenge against those who hurt his friends — as some kind of adorable harmless, innocent, naive overgrown puppy who's ripe for the picking by either Tony Stark/Iron Man, Howard Stark, Black Widow, Darcy from Thor, Thor himself, Loki, Bucky (!) — hell, practically every Marvel movie character.
- Tony Stark frequently suffers from this as seen under the Comics entries, as well as being on the short side of the Slashfic Height Rule.
- This is done constantly to Loki, with whom it is especially absurd. Far from being the superhumanly strong and superhumanly robust life-long warrior and powerful sorcerer he is in the films, he's written as fragile and passive, unable to defend himself and in constant need of protection. Going hand-in-hand with this is the extreme physical modification he undergoes: he's invariably described and illustrated as tiny and dainty in spite of the fact that he actually towers over most of the Avengers and only Thor and Hulk can take him in a fight. The popular pairing of Tony Stark/Loki nearly always makes Loki the uke and, hilariously, tends to draw Tony (5'8") as the big manly man looming over a delicate, helpless Loki (6'2"). Keep in mind that Loki in the MCU has not only given the Avengers a run for their money but also came close to killing Thor. The guy even succeeded in taking the throne of Asgard. Yet in fics relating to him you'd swear that he's some fragile piece of glass who'd shatter at the slightest physical contact.
- Bruce Banner seems to be hit with this a lot when being paired with Tony Stark. Fanfics will treat him as an emotionally fragile, delicate man who would never hurt a fly and needs Tony as an emotional crutch. Bizarrely, these fics will also give this treatment to Hulk as well, by playing up his innocent, child-like traits.
- The eponymous Sherlock Holmes (2009) gets this all the time. For everyone. Men, women, villains, heroes, Watson, alternate versions of himself and Watson, mice...
- Most Inception fics are Arthur/Eames. Most of those have Arthur being consistently sexually submissive, but his characterization can vary.
- In Les Misérables (2012), Inspector Javert frequently gets this thanks to his past and one certain scene where Javert wants Monseiur Madeleine (who is Jean Valjean actually) to reprimand him for accusing Madeleine of being Valjean with these lines, "Press charges against me, sir". Never mind that in the novel and in the musical, he doesn't angst much on his past and still suspects that Madeleine is Valjean.
- A lot of Harry Potter/Draco Malfoy fic contains this, in one way or another.
- And Remus Lupin/Sirius Black and occasionally Harry/Ron.
- Both Harry and Draco in My Immortal, despite not even being slash.
- Also, anything Harry/Snape-related will have Harry end up being ukefied. Unless it's Deserving, where both get ukefied but Snape gets the worse of it.
- Snape/Sirius fics sometimes involve Snape being ukefied due to Sirius' canon history of bullying Snape as a teen. Some fics even take this into Bastard Boyfriend and Domestic Abuse proportions.
- In Snape/Lupin fanfictions Lupin tends to get this, apparently because in Prisoner of Azkaban he acted friendly towards Snape, however this is no excuse for the amount of abuse he allows Snape to put him through in fics.
- Wicked Lovely: Quite a bit of Irial/Niall does this with Niall. And Seth gets this with pretty much everyone, even more than Niall. He might be pretty quiet and stuff in canon, but he most likely could stand up for himself if he needed to. Fanfic... disagrees.
- Despite the fact that Legolas is a badass archer who can rival Gimli in terms of badassery, he finds himself the damsel in distress in fics that involve him and Aragorn.
- Applies to many, many elves, most disturbingly seen with Glorfindel.
- Aragorn too, especially if Sauron or Legolas is on top.
- Frodo, all the time. With anyone.
- If Sauron is shipped with Morgoth, chances are he'll get this treatment. Some have played with the typical dynamic, however, often by having him "top from the bottom".
- While Elphaba is still the Seme in most fics, she's often considerably more sensitive and emotional than in even the musical.
- In A Song of Ice and Fire, one of Jon Snow's subordinates is a handsome young man known as Satin, who was previously a prostitute, having been pimped out by his mother as a boy. Fan perception is that Satin is a Camp Gay Pretty Boy who is always swooning over Jon. However, in-text, there's no indication of Satin's sexual preference (a different issue than the gender(s) he was forced to sleep with), and while Satin certainly likes and respects Jon (as a Heroic Bastard, Jon defends fellow "outcasts"), there is not much evidence of this being anything but platonic.
- Despite Diana Gabaldon's stance on fanfic, there are still a few existing Outlander fics on the net and some of them usually portray Lord John Grey as submissive because of his height, long blond hair and the death of his first lover, Hector, which most writers used to level up his angst.
- Fan art of Pink Floyd features this fairly commonly.
- The Beatles fandom often gives this treatment to Ringo Starr and Paul McCartney.
- Led Zeppelin fics often hit Robert Plant with this treatment.
- A lot of artists get this in Japanese rock music RPS. Ukefication and Wangst are often double-teamed on anyone who is written as the second half of a pairing in a lot of said fanfiction, never mind how the person might be. Some Visual Kei artists make Uke traits part of their stage persona to encourage this.
- It happens to almost any Visual Kei artist who happens to look feminine or androgynous. Pretty much the only people in Visual Kei who haven't been given stereotypical uke traits in Slash Fic are Taiji Sawada (because he was a Memetic Badass and anyone trying to make him otherwise got laughed out of the fandom) and Atsushi Sakurai of Buck Tick and because both of their bands' fandoms don't tend to attract the fangirls more prone to using this trope. Unfortunately, bad writers writing either of these, when they do appear, tend to make both of them rapists or the Memetic Molester of whomever gets the "uke" treatment, in a form of Black and White Insanity and Unfortunate Implications combined. The entire Taiji/Yoshiki pairing tended to be this in most posted fic before Real Life sunk the ship.
- Shinya of Dir en grey is one of the most favored targets. If there is a fic featuring Shinya, 99.9 percent of the time he will be both a Manchild and a stereotyped uke. It's especially jarring as most real-life accounts refer to him as a Nightmare Fetishist dominant.
- For a long time, it was quite bad to be Pete Wentz, as all of Fall Out Boy had a habit of effing you up the butt in Real-Person Fic. For a relatively longer time, it was quite bad to be Patrick Stump as Pete Wentz (and sometimes the rest of Fall Out Boy, but mainly Pete) had a habit of effing you up the butt in Real-Person Fic. Humourously, in what little hetfic exists featuring female musicians and the occasional non-self insert OC, Patrick gets nonwimped and shipped with a considerable amount of women including Pete's ex-wife, Ashlee Simpson.
- Slash fics for The Who tend to do this with Roger Daltrey.
- There are quite a few pieces of fanart where Gamzee from Homestuck is the uke to Equius' seme. While it's true that Equius is canonically The Big Guy among the trolls, it is absolutely bizarre considering that Gamzee, while he's initially a lovable dope, is the one who eventually kills Equius. Not to mention that Equius is instinctively subservient to Gamzee due to his blood. If Gamzee actually encouraged a relationship, Equius would insist on being the uke.
- Tavros is also a common victim of this. In canon, he's a Shrinking Violet, but also quite passive-aggressive when pushed and one of the most emotionally stable (and powerful) trolls. (After Character Development takes place, he stands up to Vriska and abandons her in the afterlife) However, in a lot of Tavros/Gamzee fanfiction, he's reduced to a spineless crybaby who can't do anything for himself.
- John Egbert and both Striders are majorly subjected to this. While John can be a pushover, when he puts his foot down, he can really put his foot down. He's been shown to have incredible emotional fortitude, and has gone through the death of his father and his friends without shedding a tear, though it usually comes out in a serious amount of anger if it's brought up. Dirk is majorly subjected to this as well, being reduced to a Romeo-esque figure who constantly pines over Jake. In reality, he is a ruthless survivor who's main motivation is to get out of the world he was born in, and his idea of courting was playing aggressive mindgames and sending a robot to beat Jake up. On top of that, he displays symptoms of The Unfettered, and his neurotic tendencies cause him to barely let Jake have any time to himself. Dave is actually fairly passive, but he's by no means crying over "John never loving him", he usually stews in it and pretends it's just not there when it gets down to it.
- Opposites Attract, a Homestar Runner slashfic, rather infamously does this to Strong Bad, of all people.
Strong Sad: ...said Strong Bad, putting on a bonnet and giving Homestar a deep-tissue massage...Homestar: Oh, this gon' be good.
- Not to mention that in the Sbemail "fan club," Strong Sad does this to Strong Bad in canon.
- Flippy of Happy Tree Friends sometimes gets this treatment, despite being an Ax-Crazy badass.
- Having shown weepy and childish tendencies in canon, The Nostalgia Critic gets hit with this when paired with The Nostalgia Chick, Ask That Guy, Spoony... really anyone he's ever paired with. Except Film Brain most of the time (also a victim of this, especially in early post-Kickassia fics and, minus the pairing part, Kickassia itself).
- In the worst case scenario, Critic is usually reduced to getting raped/having to give blowjobs or playing the Distressed Dude. Partly because the authors find it funny or hot to crush him completely and leave him like that, so it's not quite as horrible as some other examples.
- In RPs, Doug gets his fair share of this. Or gets made the Innocent Fanservice Boy.
- Jaune Arc, from RWBY, is a frequent target for this trope when paired with male characters, especially his teammate Lie Ren and his bully Cardin. This is in spite of the fact that Jaune is portrayed as one of the most competent members of the male cast that isn't a veteran.
- Nick Clegg gets this a lot. Disturbingly enough, it's the mainstream media that's most guilty of this; Real-Person Fic written by actual Yaoi Fangirls (yes, it exists) tend to put him in an equal or even dominant position to David Cameron or whoever he's paired up with, which shows that Reality Is Unrealistic.
- Being too damn pretty for his own good means you don't wanna be Orlando Bloom in Real-Person Fic. Or Jensen Ackles, who's gone through a lot of the woobie-fication Dean has to deal with.
- Jared Leto. Weird considering he's normally pegged as either The Casanova or a Chivalrous Pervert in both fanfic AND real life.
- This is extremely common in Formula One fanfiction, mostly for the younger racers.
- Featured in almost all of the Mitt Romney/Paul Ryan Parody Fics that came out during the 2012 U.S. presidential election. Most were as much about mocking common Slash Fic tropes as the candidates themselves.