First of all, I apologize for the gigantic title. I ended up not writing a post for this series last month, but at last, it returns!
WHAT IS A TROPE?
In storytelling, a trope is just that — a conceptual figure of speech, a storytelling shorthand for a concept that the audience will recognize and understand instantly. Above all, a trope is a convention. It can be a plot trick, a setup, a narrative structure, a character type, a linguistic idiom… you know it when you see it. (source)
Today’s trope is going to be:
TWO BROS CHILLIN’ A HOT TUBE ONLY ONE FEET APART EVEN IF THEY’RE NOT GAY
I hope y’all were able to get the Vine reference, but basically this is what I decided to use as a title for the trope that consists of a relationship between two men that is devoided of toxic masculinity. It’s a friendship where they can be affectionate, loving and open to each other, despite their sexuality.
EXHIBIT #A: WILL GRAYSON, WILL GRAYSON, BY JOHN GREEN AND DAVID LEVITHAN
It’s been such a long time since I read this book, but I have so many great memories from it! And it’s all because of the relationship betwen one of the Will Graysons and the true main character of this story, Tiny Cooper.
As I said, even though this book does not center in Tiny, he *is* our main character. He’s the one link between the two Will Grayson’s. The one written by John Green is Tiny’s long-term best friend and I loved how sweet, but realistic their friendship was.
Will is not interested in theater, but joins the play because Tiny insists and because he’s a good friend too. What I liked about their dynamic is how even if they try to keep this no-homo vibe, they literally can’t, lol. Because they love each other too much and it meant a lot to see Will being open and vocal about it after all, regardless of how Tiny can be uncomfortable about public displays of affection.
EXHIBIT #B: DEAR MARTIN, BY NIC STONE
Me talking about Nic Stone, AGAIN??????
There are several amazing elements in Dear Martin that I won’t be discussing entirely, but you can check more in-depth reasons to read this book here.
Here we have Manny and Justyce, who have been best-friends for a really long time, and are both some of the few black kids at their prep school. Even though they come from very different backgrounds – with Manny’s dad being CEO of a company, while Justyce comes from a much more humble background and a single mom -, they’re shown to be very close and very understanding of each other’s circumstances.
Their friendship has its ups and downs throughout the book, but what I like a lot about this dynamic here is that Manny is super open and affectionate and brings this out on Justyce too. He’s not shy in telling him he loves him and being his best supportive self, and even if Justyce pretends to be uncomfortable, it’s clear he loves and appreciates Manny just as much.
Be warned that they’re going to break your heart, though!
EXHIBIT #A: BAS AND ARTHUR, FROM SKAM FRANCE
I literally do nothing else in this blog but talk about Nic Stone and SKAM remakes. I apologize that my content is so repetitive, but clearly I love them.
I absolutely love the boysquad from SKAM France. They’re hilarious and have such a pure but chaotic friendship. That’s the best way I can define Bas and Arthur’s bromance: chaotic. Both are very… unique individuals, I guess you would say, and when they come together, is pure chaos, but also pure brotherhood.
What makes them fit so well in this trope to me is how neither really understand the concept of toxic masculinity and are constantly flirting with each other, because they’re just sure of their sexuality like that. It’s really funny and adorable, but I also love seeing the other more dramatic layers of their friendship too.
EXHIBIT #B: POLO, ANDER AND GUZMÁN FROM ELITE
This is the angstiest bromance of all times, period. But God I *love* them.
They’re shown to have been best friends since forever, and I think the reason why they fit into this trope so well is simply because of the undeniable chemistry all the characters in ELITE have with each other. I don’t know how to explain it, but even if they’re not in romantic relationships with each other, there’s always this underlying tension in all dynamics.
I think this is noticeable in all interactions of this trio – some more than others. But I really appreciate how being friends for so long makes it so they’re very comfortable around each other (
sometimes too comfortable cof cof), and yet that doesn’t always have to be seen as something romantic or sexual.
I don’t know if I have a favorite tier, like, if I prefer Polo x Guzmán or Ander x Polo. I like all three of them, in their absolute messiness, hilariousness and angst.
If you have any recommendations for this trope, pleeeease, let me know. I’ll love to discuss them with you in the comments!