demeter918: blue doraemon cat (Default)
[personal profile] demeter918
I think I'm getting old, but I'm always a little mystified by love triangles in fiction. It seems to be most prevalent in young adult fiction, but there's definitely plenty of it everywhere else.

I mean. Come on. It's difficult enough these days to find one person who's just for you; how does one even deal with two? Wouldn't it be incredibly hard to find yourself in love with two people? Yeah, you could say it's 'romantic' or that there's just a part of you that will always be with the other person you didn't choose, but... I don't think that's a good thing.

Love's pretty crap, man. It's like this horrible thing that punches you in the eye and then uppercuts you like a pixelated scene from Street Fighter II when you're staggering back in excruciating pain.

Or this could be the crankyoldmaid in me talking. WHO KNOWS?

Date: 2012-08-17 07:07 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]

Like they say -- when it rains, it pours.


As soon as you start a relationship - BAM! All these interesting people pop out of nowhere it seems. Yup, love's pretty crap like that.

Date: 2012-08-17 09:29 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I was looking at the list of 'recommended' young adult fiction, and I realized that a good proportion of the stories on there had either romance as the main bulwark, or had a triangle of Very Epicness. It was a little unsettling; the romance I definitely understand; I can remember sobbing into everything that was soft and absorbent about my 'loves'. But the triangle thing really got to me, because what's the point?

Date: 2012-08-22 09:31 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
argh, late reply! So terribly, terribly late.

Love triangles exists because... it's fiction. XD

IRL, you probably have some idea what qualities you want in the significant other. Chances are, you'll meet someone who's got some of those qualities (hopefully, the important ones), but most likely not someone who's a 100% match to ALL the desirable qualities.

It's the wishful thinking of wanting it all - Aiden has qualities A, B, and C, while Zachary has qualities X, Y, and Z. Who to choose? Which one? ...thus, the "drama" unfolds. And of course, one guy is the sexy, dangerous, passionate, slightly psychotic bad boy, while the other one is the stable, staid, stiff-upper-lipped responsible one.
Yup, predictable.

Date: 2012-08-18 04:59 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Oh, I agree. I just don't buy the idea that it's THAT hard to know who you want to be with. And you're certainly right about it being hard enough to find ONE person you feel strongly about, much less two.

Date: 2012-08-20 04:24 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
This came about because of, haha, Sex and the City 2; there was a group of us watching it and it being KIND OF TERRIBLE aside, we were almost unanimous in thinking - WTF is she thinking?!

There's a lot of female-oriented fiction that also has these problems, and I think the point that started bothering me is that I didn't notice it, really, until recently. It just seemed kind of... normal, par for course. Of course there's a triangle. Of course the woman/girl can't pick until the very end. Of course we're expected to believe that that's normal.

Aaaaand, whut?

Date: 2012-08-21 09:19 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I wish I could remember being unaware of love triangles. It's one of my LEAST favorite tropes and it is ALL OVER just about every fandom I've ever been in.

Date: 2012-08-20 03:38 am (UTC)
ext_3328: Rosencrantz & Guildenstern are Dead (FF12: Larsa - ponce)
From: [identity profile]
I blame Twilight, like I do for many things.

That being said, love triangles make for high drama which is why ppl love to write them. It may not be realistic - reality is usually 1 relationship, 1 breakup, 1 new relationship, and 1 stalky ex who can't let go. But what's "sexy" about reading what is basically the evening news crime report? Better to think the protagonist you can identify with is a fluffy star / unresistable stud who can get whomever s/he wants. There's a reason so many ppl are game or internet addicted, it's to escape reality. Books can be the same, even in a bad way.

I highly recommend Philip k. Dick for cures to the teeny triangle fiction. Kathy Acker if you've REALLY had it with sappy romance, LOL!

Date: 2012-08-20 05:28 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Twilight plays a huge part, but what's really interesting is that, if you think about it, a lot of female-oriented fiction and media does that as well. Including those that aren't targeted at the younger females, which I initially thought was the major problem.

I was looking over the recommendations of a Young Adult Reading List, and a lot of them had that dreaded three-way love triangle, which surprised me. Though it shouldn't, because yeah, of course, these are young adult novels and it's just a fantasy; most outgrow the idea and know that it's silly, that it doesn't really work like that, that drama is waaaay over-rated.

ARGH, what am I even talking about. Sometimes I confuse myself.

I'll have to look up his works! I actually have a graphic novel version of "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?" that I got as a gift, so I need to crack that open!

Date: 2012-08-22 09:32 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]

Date: 2012-08-22 12:28 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I think love triangles are so prevalent precisely *because* it's hard enough to find even one person, as you point out. On some level, all love stories are about wish fulfillment, and I'm sure there are lots of people for whom the idea of being so irresistible that two people are throwing themselves at/fighting over you is very appealing. Same goes for the idea that you're the one breaking hearts by choosing from multiple options instead of having your heart broken by loving someone who doesn't care for you back (which is far more likely what happens in RL)...

Date: 2012-08-23 08:52 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
That's very true, and I can understand the fantasy aspect; I actually dislike Twilight less than I used to, because I've come to think of it as a Harlequin novel. It's pure fantasy and I think there's less of an issue with the series itself (oh, and there are plenty) than with people who read it and accept it as fact.

Triangles bother me, because there's always somebody getting hurt and in stories, at least, it's actually never their fault. There's this back and forth tugging among the parties and really, for fantasy writers, do they believe so little in the female perspective (especially considering most of the writers are female)? That most women would do this? Especially when they're simultaneously being written as one stop away from awesome?

Maybe that's what really bothers me...

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