Let me tell you about this little gem of a web series I, quite fittingly, stumbled across the other day via a Tumblr gif set tagged with Richard Armitage’s name. OTP: OneTruePairing follows Sheila and Jeremy, a fic writing duo who live in New York City.
After having worked on Bagginshield fic (that would be Thorin/Bilbo to those of you outside of Internet fandom) for over a year, the 40-something mom, Sheila, and 19-year-old former child actor, Jeremy decide to share an apartment while they both try to move on with their lives. Sheila is in the beginnings of a nasty divorce from a jerk of an ex-husband and Jeremy has declared independence from his momager and wants to find a life outside of acting.
Each episode begins with a voiceover from Sheila reading from one of the Hobbit fics they are currently writing. Regardless of what fandom(s) you enjoy, fic writers and lovers alike will undoubtedly see a lot of themselves in Sheila and Jeremy. Sadly, there are only three short episodes available at the moment, but they successfully funded the series on Kickstarter. I spent each practically shrieking with laughter at my laptop screen over the oh-so-familiar fic writing woes and arguments – such as the overuse of the word “prick” (sorry Sheila, I’m a fan of “cock” just like Jeremy).
What I truly love about this fandom-based comedy is that it comes from the heart. Series creator and star, Laura Jordan’s real life experience within fandom serves as inspiration for the story. Unlike most of the attention that fandom receives from the media, the joke is not that these two people enjoy writing a hobbit getting sexy with a dwarf king; it’s the funny and often weird or pervy experiences along the way that fans like myself relate to. In an interview with The Collective, Jordan talks about her love of transformative works:
“The world building in fanfiction is inspiring. I wish some actors and TPTB weren’t threatened or dismissive [of fanfiction], because there really is an incredible amount of creativity, love and respect for these characters, who are appealing and inspiring for fans. Fanfiction is all about learning, dabbling [and] helps create confidence, with practice.”
All I can say to Laura Jordan and her team is thank you for finally creating a geeky comedy that real fans can enjoy. I look forward to seeing how OTP develops in their upcoming second season and hope to see more fan interaction (maybe a fan meetup or our intrepid smut-writing duo going to a con?) that shows just how varied and interesting fandom is.