Fairy Tail – Relationship Values
Is romance something you think about a lot? When you read an manga or watch an anime, how much thought goes into the potential partners that could come about? I know when I was younger, I was much more into shipping and everything it entailed, so I know the mindset that goes into it. Now it’s something that happens very rarely unless I can clearly see a romantic subplot. Sure, sometimes I’ll wonder about romance in other series, but it’s less “Should Yuuki hook up with Zero or Kaname?” and more “Could Yuuki be having sex with both of these guys and get away with it?”. You know, weird theories and ideas like that.
When it came to Fairy Tail, then, I really didn’t put much thought into romance. Hell, I’m pretty sure the mangaka doesn’t put any thought into it. So when we get moments like this where two characters are teased like crazy, the result isn’t so much adoration as it is confusion. I know the series isn’t going to suddenly pair off two characters in the middle of an arc, but having Lucy suddenly confess is completely out of left field. Of course I knew it wasn’t real, but it still got me thinking because the thought of Gray and Lucy ever being together is not one I’ve had before. What if this ever did happen?
It’s genuinely hard for me to think about these two as anything other than friends (I suddenly have newfound respect for Chizuru Yoshida). The fact is that there really isn’t room in a manga like this for that kind of relationship. It’s like how there’s no romance in One Piece or Natsume Yuujinchou because those are supposed to focus on completely different kinds of relationships. Have you ever seen love get in the way of friendship? How about when a series is focused around friendship? Romance changes things, and most writers know that on some level, so it’s best to avoid it when it would hurt the other themes.
Now we know there probably won’t be anything in the main story, but we’ve all seen stories where people hook up at the very end. If somehow Lucy and Grey did get together when everything is over, I think I’d be okay with that. If Lucy and Natsu got together, I’d be okay with that too. If Lucy and Erza hooked up…okay, that would probably be the best ending ever, but not out of any real attachment to the ship. With a manga like Fairy Tail, I prefer to leave those things in the hands of more capable fans. I suppose that’s why this scene threw me off so much, but it should serve as a reminder of how out of place this stuff normally is. And why so many people like Juvia.