Guilty Pleasures: Cowboy Bebop, Fanfiction and… The Weeknd?

Debuting our newest segment on guilty pleasures…

The following contains sexual themes, spoilers to Cowboy Bebop, and a slight shameful fondness for The Weeknd. Read at your own discretion.

Today on this wholesome music site, I will be discussing something extremely common. I do it, you do it, everyone does it.

No, it’s not masturbation. It is reading fanfiction… and occasionally listening to The Weeknd.

Late last year, when Spotify released its annual playlist of most played tracks for its users, it came to no surprise to me that “I Feel It Coming” by The Weeknd and Daft Punk was on the very top of my list.

Truly, I can live with at least one song from the Michael-Jackson-wannabe, Abel Makkonen Tesfaye, being on my list. Just admit it, there are a few songs you listen to even though the elite of music nerds might shame you for even tapping your toes to them.

Further down my playlist was  “Secrets,” the other single from his Starboy album, which samples “Pale Shelter” by Tears For Fears and features words straight from The Romantics’ 1983 single, “Talking In Your Sleep.” So one song is fine, but two? Disgraceful.

But listen, I can explain myself and my musical choices. You see, not only am I a music fan — I am also a fangirl. And when I am bored and trying to avoid doing my homework, I read fanfiction.

Being the kind of person who needs to listen to music when reading or doing homework, these were the two songs I jammed to non-stop when reading fanfiction about my latest obsession, Cowboy Bebop.

If you don’t know, Cowboy Bebop is a 90s anime about a bunch of bounty hunters living in a spaceship together, catching bad guys and smoking cigarettes (these fuckers smoke a lot). The characters are complex and are hardly even friends, and the jazz soundtrack is so iconic that I want a record of it.

And if you already know about Cowboy Bebop, then you might guess that the fics I read were about iconic ship (a term used when referring to a fictional couple whose relationship you support intensely) Faye Valentine and Spike Spiegel.

The internet has a handful of smutty fics where Faye and Spike hide away in either one’s room, smoke a cigarette later and just act angsty. Faye’s in love with Spike but of course, he will never reciprocate because he’s already in love with Julia. And he can only see the past in one eye and the present in the other.

And The Weeknd is perfect for these tension-filled fanfics.

“I Feel It Coming,” is a slow, sensual jam with Daft Punk’s familiar funky edge. It doesn’t have the dark vibe of “The Hills” or the faux sophistication of “Earned It.” Just like on the music video, you can just sway slowly with a lover to this song.

So when it comes to secretly fucking your roommate in the dark and smoking cigarettes, this is the perfect song.

Honestly, I felt like Spike and Faye would argue less if they just slept together. It would’ve been a good way to let off some steam. I told a friend this and he just said, “what makes you think they didn’t?”

Although “I Feel It Coming” has a hint of romanticism, “Secrets” is clearly about adultery. This song, which does not feature Daft Punk, centers on Tesfaye telling his lover that he knows about her affair because she talks in her sleep. Hence the, “I hear the secrets that you keep when you’re talking in your sleep.”

The lyrics are very clear.

Although this may not in any way relate to Spike and Faye’s relationship in the anime or in any fanfic I read, the song does go rather well with the love triangle between Spike, Julia and Vicious.

Spoiler alert, before Spike lived on the Bebop, he was on Mars working as a hitman for the Red Dragon Crime Syndicate. His best friend was Vicious and they had good times playing pool until Julia came.

She was Vicious’ girl and he wanted her.

Long story short, he got shot, she nursed him to health, they started an affair, they were going to run away together, but she didn’t show and he faked his own death. Tragic.

Also Vicious wants both of them dead, but that’s for the last episode.

So, although it may not have anything to do with the hot sex Faye and Spike are probably having, it does fit with the fact that Spike cannot let go of the past. To put it dramatically, Julia is forever haunting Spike. Also, he’s a cancer, so he’s fucking emotional.

Still, the song is a good sex jam.

There are more songs I love that remind me of Cowboy Bebop (Space Cowboy by Kacey Musgraves is what I think went through Faye’s head in the finale and I cry just thinking about it), but talking about The Weeknd is far more amusing.

So if you’re looking for some spicy fics to read in the night, Cowboy Bebop or otherwise, feel free to tweet me @gbriellez asking for recs. I have my favorites compiled. (I can also pair them with certain songs for you.)

Want to write about your musical guilty pleasures? Shoot us an email at dulcetzine@gmail.com

Author: Gabby

Gabby, 22, is a journalism major at an expensive university. When she's not stressing over school or serving coffee at Starbucks, she is usually listening to music and hanging out at a record store. She hopes to find a job that will combine her love of art and music with her journalism degree.

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