If we take notes from the great pages of fanfics, the main gist would be: Falling in love with a person is one thing, but falling in deep, deep infatuation with a couple’s love is a whole ’nother experience.
For this Valentine’s Day, we take a look at the OTPs to end all OTPs and the ships that shaped the Scout team, which continue to live in our heads rent-free. (No regrets.)
Chae-Kyung x Lee Shin from “Princess Hours”
“Before K-dramas popped out from every corner of the internet, 10-year-old me used to sneak in nightly viewings of ‘Princess Hours’ in my otherwise packed fifth-grade schedule. Looking back, it might have cemented my fixation for enemies-to-lovers ships that have now spanned Dramione of ‘Harry Potter’ to Reylo of ‘Star Wars.’
Crown Princess Chae-Kyung and Crown Prince Lee Shin were the blueprint, in this case. Their story would prove to be AU fanfic material, before I’ve even stepped into the world of AO3. Quirky and totally normal Chae-Kyung finds herself in an arranged marriage situation with modern South Korea’s crown prince, who’s every bit as snobby as K-drama male leads get. The 24 episodes’ worth of pining was both delicious and the bane of my school nights, which all snowballed into the angstiest of love confessions. Recently, I’ve given ‘Princess Hours’ a rewatch, and not gonna lie, it still holds up.” — Katrina Maisie Cabral, junior content creator
Nick x Sheeni from “Youth in Revolt”
“‘Youth in Revolt’ was really special to me because I related to the main character Nick Twisp. Nick Twisp created this alter ego to prove his love for Sheenie by being a badass cool-looking guy. (Ah, the things you’ll do for love.) But the one thing that captured me in the movie is the last scene/dialogue of Nick Twisp, after realizing that he can’t be the one Sheenie wants to be, that he’s just him and that’s all
‘Sheeni, I want what you want. I want to live all over the world, and have adventures… But I’m not Francois. I’m the guy who saw you, and fell in love with you, and would do anything for you. That’s who I am.’
That line makes me realize what I did every time I had a crush back then, that I always changed myself for somebody to like me back or to accept my love. But you just need to be yourself and show how you really like that person and if it doesn’t go well, then there is someone else it will go better with.” — Mikey Yabut, junior multimedia artist
Nam x Shone from “Crazy Little Thing Called Love”
“This Thai rom-com was a big thing in my second year of high school, but it was extra special to me because I felt like living (almost) the same thing. In that same year, I was crushing on our school’s peak Crush ng Bayan—he’s smart, athletic, artistic and gets 2,519 photo requests every Foundation Day.
I pretended to like math and climbed up the honor roll just to earn that imaginary ‘approval’ from the guy, despite knowing I’m even less than a blip in his history. But since Nam was living vicariously through me, I continued making senseless efforts—until I realized he doesn’t give a shit. The funny part? That epiphany happened when we were having a school play, and I played as Nam. He was nowhere in the audience.
Years after that, I realized what I love about ‘CLTCL’ other than Nam and Shone’s peak ‘what if’ love story. The time skip says it all: You shouldn’t depend your growth on another person. Go get that bread for you, periodt.” — Jelou Galang, junior content creator
Danny x Sam from “Danny Phantom”
“My entire childhood revolved around religiously watching this show every weekend. Oh, and sure, younger me found Danny (Fenton *and* Phantom) cute. Don’t lie, I know y’all did too.
I shipped this ship before I even knew what shipping was, probably the ship to blame for my fixation with the friends-to-lovers (and pining) trope. Tumblr even taught me that this ship has a name: Amethyst Ocean.
I love these two characters a lot, even if Danny’s cluelessness is getting ridiculous and Sam can be rather hypocritical at times. These two undeniably share a strong bond and that’s what I gravitated toward. It’s not the most perfect ship on the show despite being the most popular one (something I’ve come to accept years later), but it shaped my definition for ships I’d binge-read 500,000-word slowburn fics of.” — Danea Vilog, junior content creator
Shrek x Fiona from “Shrek”
“The ‘Shrek’ cinematic universe didn’t just give us multiple classic memes and the best cover of a song (thanks Fairy Godmother), it also gave us the greatest love story ever written.
Shrek and Fiona depicted love unlike any other movie. They poked fun at how fairy tales portrayed romance. As a kid, I didn’t actually look at the story on a deeper level until I rewatched it in my teenage years.
Of course, there’s the message about not judging a book by its cover. Shrek and Fiona both struggled to accept themselves at the beginning of the story. What I like about its progression is that they didn’t rely on each other to accept themselves; they were able to do it on their own. They taught me that love starts with ourselves before we can fully give it to others. And that’s why up to now, Shrek and Fiona remain the superior OTP for me. Now, I dare you to name a better love story. I’ll wait.” — Yel Sayo, graphic designer
Mew x Tong from “Love of Siam”
“Before my fascination with ‘Skam’ (and its multiverses) began and before the slew of other BL series made its presence felt, there was Mew and Tong. Back in the 2000s, I wasn’t heavily invested (yet) in romantic dramas, but then along came ‘Love of Siam.’ For someone who was teetering between the closet and the outside world, this Thai film was a revelation. Let’s just say the controversy surrounding its marketing also piqued my interest. (Film posters and previews didn’t drop any hints at all)
On the surface, it seemed like a typical teen romance (and it wasn’t, because the film tackled so much more than passionate love) but as the story unfolded, the sparks between Mew (Witwisit Hiranyawongkul) and Tong (Mario Maurer) built on Thai pop rock cannot be denied. And that was probably my first experience of shipping. I shipped them then because 22-year-old me understood both characters’ inner turmoils. Reserved to a fault, Mew and Tong both appeared to care more about pleasing others than themselves but naturally, as I learned, you can only do it for so long.
And while they didn’t end up together, I still ship them for the way the characters beautifully allowed me to empathize with them and their tough situation. It was an arguably realistic portrayal of navigating teen tribulations and first love and, most notable, hope for the future. In a way, ‘Love of Siam’ taught me to trade my unhealthy obsession with the perfect romance for something that just runs its course.
‘I can’t be your boyfriend, but that doesn’t mean I don’t love you,’ said Tong to Mew. *cue intense crying session again*” — Eric Nicole Salta, editorial manager
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Art by Yel Sayo