Why Gwevin failed (or Why Bwen is still so popular)

  • @goodvibes1999 I don't think Gwevin will happen in the Reboot, because the people responsible for the Reboot - Man of Action - are the same writers from the Original Series. And in the Original Series, Kevin appears only in 5 out of 52 episodes: "Kevin 11", "Framed", "Grudge Match", "Back With a Vengeance" and "Ken 10".

    In "Framed", Kevin tries to burn Gwen alive, and in "Back With A Vengeance", Kevin drops Gwen to die in the Null-Void, after hurting her. alt text

    "Ken 10" is set in the future, and in this episode Kevin was still a villain and had a son named Devlin (and obviously, Gwen wasn't the mother), a proof that the Original Series' writers never planned a redemption for him, much less a relationship between him and Gwen.

    But since Kevin was UAF's Creator's Pet, so they retconned/ignored his past, redeemed him, turned him into a main character, and wrote a relationship between him and Gwen. I might be wrong, but I really really doubt the Original Series' crew would ever do something like this.

    About the ship popularity in Brazil, I think Bwen is quite popular over here too. Eu sou brasileiro, e prefiro Bwen kkkkkkk

    I'm fine with Ben/Kai and Ben/Charmcaster. I just dislike Ben/Julie because Julie was a satellite love interest and it was clear Ben/Julie was always in second place to Kevin/Gwen for the writers.

  • @oldtaku_dd Well, it would be very out of character for Ben and Gwen to do this (but, well, it was completely out of character for Gwen to say "Why haven't you asked me out?" to a guy who had tried to kill her multiple times after just spending five episodes with him in the first season of Alien Force, so it all depends on what the writers want to do xD)

    I think even if Gwen were to decide to break up with Kevin to pursue a relationship with Ben (no cheating), it would be enough reason for a mentally unstable Kevin to feel betrayed and try to kill both of them (again).

    And in the OS original timeline, Kevin was enemies for life with Ben (Ken 10) and it had nothing to do with Gwen, so Kevin doesn't really need a good reason to hate Ben, he just does XD

  • @csgt Kevin being on TeamTennyson was mandated by cartoon network. The fact that it turned out so well is because the writers on Dwayne Mcduffie and co were good at there jobs and wrote a good show.

    My inner crazy man wants me to write a story were Kevin still ends up evil. The fall of Kevin Levin if you get my drift. I don't know if I'll ever do it, but its an idea in my head.

    But my fanfiction musing aside I don't think Gwevin failed it's go to many fans for that. Bwen doesnt die because because some people have different ideas about dating relatives. 😛

  • @Oldtaku_dd I don't think it turned out so well. Let's see the evidence:

    1. With all the respect, Mcduffie and co messed up real bad with their retcons, and Omniverse had the thankless job of fixing it.
      Writer #1 "So Kevin's dad Devin Levin and Max Tennyson were partners? So why in the Original Series Max doesn't recognize Kevin nor do anything to look out for him - breaking the promise he had made to his partner?"
      Writer #2 "Well... Hm... Crap... Let's make Devin Levin a false memory implanted by Servantis on Max's head."
    2. The justification "Kevin was insane, his crimes were not his fault" was just too little, too late.
      Plothole #1 It took seasons before they told us Kevin was insane as a child. Ben and Gwen forgave him BEFORE they knew "the powers made him do it". (The answer: this was a later retcon, at the beginning of Alien Force the writers weren't planning to do it.)
      Plothole #2 Is it really a justification? If so, why didn't the team give a second chance to Aggregor - after all, he's an Osmosian just like Kevin, his evil ways are not his fault.
    1. We all know there was a huge viewership decline in the first two seasons of Alien Force, The writers subtle acknowledged the problem in-universe, but ignored it.
      Dialogue from Alien Force Season 3, episode The Final Battle
      Ben Tennyson: It's a sequel to the original show, but they kinda messed it up. It's like five years later and the bad guy, Kenko, has teamed up with the hero, Ishiyama. It's not very realistic, is all I'm saying.
      Kevin Levin: Aha...
      Ben Tennyson: Anyway, there's only five more of these before they cycle back to the original show. You'll see, it's way better.
      Later, UA lost even more viewers than AF, which led CN to take a different approach with Omniverse - and they got rid of Kevin as a part of the main cast. And now, they did cycle back to the Original Show with the Reboot, with Ben and Gwen back as the main heroes once again.
      So, even though many many fans like Gwevin and Hero!Kevin, I think we can say these concepts weren't very successful.

    About Bwen not dying, well, it's not that people have different ideas about dating relatives - I know many people wouldn't support a relationship between cousin in real life, even though they ship it in fiction. And, do you see, for example, fans shipping Superman and his cousin Supergirl together? No. Bwen is actually one of the few popular pairings between relatives, and Gwevin didn't sink it.

    I would love to read your "The Fall of Kevin Levin" fic! Do you have a profile on Fanfiction net?

  • Not really Max might not have recognoised Kevin or ever met him. He could have looked into things in between episodes and dug up information we will never know.
    Ben and Gwen Trusting Kevin was a matter of taking a risk because they had no other options. That worked out so they trusted him.
    This isn't novel writing where its all planned out ahead of time by one author, the writing is done in installments be many different writers like a comic book or manga. At some point someone needs to say " whats next" and what they write might not 100% work with what the last person was thinking.

    Yea I have a FFN profile but ive not written any stories were Kevin goes evil again. I have done Kevin concentric stories though. I'm thinking about that fall of Kevin one, so maybe one day, ill write it. Link to my stories is in my signature 🙂

  • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eRReRF7uKK0
    The best way to describe Why people ship Bwen.

  • @oldtaku_dd said in Why Gwevin failed (or Why Bwen is still so popular):


    Ben and gwen had very odd subtext for cousins when the first series aired back then. People shipped the cousins because of that said subtext back then. Also as many people pointed out during pre production they weren't related and the creators changed that at the last minute because cartoon network thought it was weird to have a unrelated girl travel with an old grandpa and a young boy for so long. It also really dosen't help that the original series creators forgot to remove all the subtext completely and only make slight tweaks then call it "cousin love".

    I remember watching the episode benwolf the subtext really showed there and kai felt more like a romantic false lead. If the writers wanted to fix this mess, man of action should have really revised the script and rewrote the script from scratch even if the show was gonna get delayed a bit ether that or the sequal series acknowledges that something might have been there between ben and gwen but have them move on to someone else because its wrong to date family. And put a lot of effort and consistent development towards the non ben and gwen ship.

  • @bwen329 To be fair, any subtext beyond season 1 was probably intentional. I understand changing the scripts for the first season would be hard, but, for example, the Bwen slow dance scene happened in Big Fat Alien Wedding - Season 4. And it's almost impossible to believe they had scripts for the entire series before they even started. So I guess they acknowledged the Bwen shippers and decided to add some Bwen subtext every once in a while. Many shows with popular taboo ships go this route, and it's the safest way (they don't make a taboo ship canon, but at the same time they don't alienate the part of the fanbase who ship it)

    Of course, for the sequel shows, the producers hated Bwen. But they had terribly bad ideas to sink it. For starters, they put zero effort on Ben's love interest. Julie was a satellite character whose only purpose was to show up every five or six episodes so the writers could say "Look! We gave Ben a girlfriend!". The couple they actually cared about was Gwevin, and either due to their lack of knowledge of the OS, or due to their belief that 'viewers are morons and will forget everything' they failed to see that Gwevin in real life would be WAY creepier than Bwen - I've heard of cousins dating, but I've never heard of a girl dating a mentally unstable guy who attempted to murder her multiple times - outside of a very abusive relationship context.

  • I agree cgst

  • I can't believe anyone on that show wanted it to be ok for Ben to have romantic feelings for his cousin.

  • Wtf this is incest.

  • @oldtaku_dd Never said they wanted it to happen. I just said they didn't want to sink it. They just had to leave enough subtext there for Bwen fans to interpret it as romantic, but at the same time, people who are against the pairing could still see these same moments as purely platonic. For example, this famous scene https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mQfEwUzgwEs That's the most common thing shows do when they have popular taboo pairings, and I could give you dozens of examples of that.

    Man of Action had plenty opportunity to do sink Bwen in the future episodes showing Ben and Gwen happily married to other people and yet they didn't. In "Ben 10,000", Gwendolyn is the one who goes to the past and brings present Ben and Gwen to save Ben 10K from his bitterness - a proof that she is still the person who cares the most for him. And in "Ken 10", Ken's mother (Kai?) is completely absent in her own son's birthday party and is not even mentioned onscreen. The person who acts as a mother figure to Ken is actually Gwendolyn, giving Ken the stone dog as a gift and giving Ben 10K parenting advices - while Kevin is still a completely insane criminal, a proof that Man of Action never intended Gwevin to happen.

    While Alien Force sunk Bwen in its very first episode, making it obvious to everyone which pairings they were aiming for. By episode five, Gwen was literally begging Kevin to ask her out ("Why haven't you asked me out yet?") and in episode seven, Gwen literally pushes Ben to date Julie (Ben was shy and wasn't going to ask Julie out, but Gwen pushes him towards Julie when he tries to leave). Instead, they could have kept things ambiguous enough for people who like Gwevin to believe Gwen had feelings for Kevin, and people who didn't to believe Gwen was only trying to be Kevin's friend and preventing him from reverting back to his old ways (and would never consider dating a guy who tried to murder her before). And also for people who like Bwen to believe Gwen and Ben had feelings for each other, and people who didn't to believe they were just regular cousins. Why did they have to force their pairings on the viewer?

    Omniverse wasn't different, in the very first episode Gwen leaves Bellwood with Kevin, and in Omniverse's future, Gwendolyn and Kevin 11,000 are together (even though they chose to make "Ken 10" canon, meaning that Kevin was still insane and murderous, and fathered Devlin with another woman), and Ben and Kai are clearly together too.

  • With me cgst I think ben should of just killed Kevin instead of putting him back in the nullvoid

  • OK lets try to get this thread back on track.

    I don't think Gwevin failed, but Bwen would have taken more of a hit if Ben's love interests were more of a hit with fans. My favorite example of this. Kai " my relationship with ben is cannon " green. In every appearance except her last one in omniverse ( yea old DD just complimented omniverse ) did she had no chemistry at all. She just took advantage of him. Ring ring Ben its Kai Green I know we havent seen or spoken in 5-6 years but I need your help. . .. mind dropping everything crossing half the world so i can call you a fool half the episode? Thanks bye!

    IF they made the viewers like Kai, people might day dream about ben keeping it in the family a bit less.

  • Ah probably not oldtaku dd because I watched tenchi muyo and other shows that had cousin couples plus I am a fan of tai and Kari pairing for digimon

  • @oldtaku_dd
    I agree with you that Bwen would have taken a hit if Ben's love interests were better. I kinda acknowledged that in my original post too. Basically, I talked about 3 points:

    1. In a real life scenario, a girl would be better off dating her cousin than dating a mentally unstable guy who made multiple attempts against her life in the past - that's where I think Gwevin fails.
    1. What you mentioned. Ben never really had a good love interest.

    I do like Kai better than Julie, though. An archeologist who travels around the world looking for alien artifacts is WAY more compatible to Ben's adrenaline-junkie lifestyle than a regular girl who likes playing tennis and doing normal stuff (Julie had Ship, but she rarely went on missions with Ben, she didn't really want this kind of life - nothing wrong with that, but it made her completely incompatible to Ben). Julie was absent for most of the episodes and didn't stand out in any way (mainly because she was just a plot device for the writers, the obligatory love interest for the hero. It was clear that the couple the writers actually cared about was Gwevin).

    While Alien Force/Ultimate Alien mistake was not caring at all about a pairing for Ben, Omniverse's mistake was the opposite. They did care for romance in Ben's life, and gave him multiple love interests, but... they couldn't really decide and ended up not giving enough development to ANY of the girls. Kai appeared for only like, four episodes - they should've used her A LOT more.

    And of course, in the last season they messed up again making Kai prefer ALL of Ben's aliens over him. It was actually OOC for Kai, because in the Original Series, when she turned him down, she said: "The alien stuff's cool, just not as cool as when you were a Yenaldooshi." she clearly didn't care for any other of Ben's aliens. If I had to write a BenKai relationship, I would've made Kai a werewolf to explain her preference for Benwolf (similar to what they with Looma/Four Arms and Attea/Bullfrag, but I would've developed more of human Kai and human Ben too)

    So, although I did like Kai's "Lara Croft" persona on Omniverse, I think they also messed up real bad with her.

    So, basically, Ben's two main love interests were poorly handled by the writers, and Gwen is actually a better option for Ben.

    1. Bwen is a good ship 😛

  • @csgt I find that odd that man of action would put incest on purpose like that on a kids show after changing gwen into bens cousin. I dont think they cared enough to remove all the subtext because to them the show is mainly geared towards kids and they probably thought the kids wouldn't notice it and be more focused on the action and adventure part of the story.

  • I don't find it odd I would do the same thing if I worked on a kids cartoon show

  • Does anyone know how to delete your account on Ben 10 Club? I really don't want to be a part of a forum that promotes incest.

  • @xlr8isbest you've jumped in a hole you can't climb out of.

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