Derek and Stiles in canon

Once again the question of Sterek in canon has been raised and once again I feel like we’re kind of missing the point. This conversation is not new, it’s been had for a year, ever since the possibility appeared for real when Jeff Davis said it might be possible.

When I watched the first season, I was convinced that I was watching a canon pairing. You know, your typical will they/won’t they romance that takes a long time to slowly grow together, build trust, and awkwardly find that they are better together than they’re apart.

A lot of people have objected to Sterek in canon because they say that these boys are not ready. It’s funny because I agree completely – they are not currently ready to have a healthy and wholesome relationship with each other, or anyone, really. But that’s not really what we’re asking for, now is it?

“Make Sterek canon” is not a call to give them a pasted on romance that twists their characters. It’s not something nice or easy. No one really wants nice and easy.

What I need from the show is a story and not a premature happy ending. Stiles and Derek have a bunch of obstacles that make it difficult to just be together. Those obstacles make for a great story. Because of course Derek Hale would think of his history with Kate. Because of course he would be reluctant to open up. Because of course there’s been violence and death threats between them. Because of course they’re both little shits who delight in annoying each other.

What I need for the show is to make the commitment to explore that possibility.

I don’t want Derek and Stiles to get the sweeping music treatment. They don’t need it.

I want to see them fight for this. I want to see them drawn to each other despite their own better judgment. I want to see them bleed for this. I want tooth and claw and tears and miscommunication.

Getting Stiles and Derek to their happy ending should take a long time. It should be hard. It should be a difficult road with a lot of pitfalls.

Who wants easy? Easy and sweet is for people like Scott and Allison. Derek and Stiles are different. Their jagged edges are what makes them so good, what makes this so interesting.

What “making it canon” means to me is, at first, nothing more than the show acknowledging in some way that they are in fact interested in each other. I don’t need them to kiss right now, I don’t need to see any kind of sex scene or cuddling or romantic walks through the woods. Talk about missing the point. I have no doubt that one day, after working through everything, they will be physical and even affectionate, and maybe even have ironic romantic dates where they mock everything, but that’s not what I need from the show and certainly not without that fight I mentioned.

Something like Derek and Stiles is a story about overcoming adversity. It’s about how love, like weeds, can grow in unlikely places. It’s the anti-thesis to sweet and easy. It takes a long time and a commitment by the writers to go there. If they want to make it work, they have to start now because the road is long and complicated. And maybe they won’t ever get to anything like a happy ending. You know, that’s okay, too.

But right now real people are attacked and ridiculed for believing that this is a story worth telling and that is not okay. Of course Derek and Stiles aren’t secretly lovers. This pairing is all about delicious potential. Hilarity and angst and somewhere in between the spark of something that can last. I want the show to leave us with metaphorical blue balls and tears and make us writhe with how much we want them to get together. Not just us fans, but everyone. I want to see Derek and Stiles steep in unresolved sexual tension until they, and we, can’t take it anymore. And I want them to be the same sarcastic assholes they’ve always been.

But what I need, what I really need, is for all of that to be undeniably real. I need the show to have at least that much courage. Even if they never get to the physical part, I need the show to make it explicit that they want to.

“Making it canon” is the journey, not the destination. “Making it canon” is not about a static couple, it’s about a living, breathing story. “Making it canon” is not easy. But that journey, that struggle, makes it all the more satisfying in the end.