In the beginning, there were alignments. Then there were Hogwarts Houses. And then there was BDE.
When it comes to judging your favorite characters, these are all very fine and worthy metrics, but isn't it time we went back to the metrics that mattered? You know, the stars?
With their hands determinedly covering up the birthdates of your favorite characters, FANGRRLS Sara and Clare set out to assign star signs to all your faves, one franchise at a time.
In this special Pride edition of Star Signs, Sara and Clare tackle some of the all-time queer greats of SF television!
Jack Harkness: Aries
Clare: Returning to aughts British television is very difficult for me, what with Sherlock and all, but we can’t not open up a Pride edition of Star Signs with Doctor Who’s first openly queer character. Jack Harkness is charming, dashing, and flirty, the Han Solo to the Doctor’s Obi-Wan Kenobi. In a world where we so often have to watch our queer characters like a hawk lest some straight writer kill them off, here’s a queer character created by a queer writer who literally cannot die. Jack is queer and immortal… like a lot of Aries I could name.
Sara: I like Jack and I think he’s pretty annoying because that’s usually the effect that charm has on lesbians from what I can tell. This guy even flirts with murderous fashion robots, so there’s definitely something to be said about letting it go sometimes.
Clare: I mean, when Jack goes, he goes hard. Part of Jack’s appeal is that he’ll do what the Doctor won’t for good reasons, even when that thing is, like, murdering his own grandson to save the Earth from aliens.
Sara: In his first appearances he plays it off like he’s a goofy, self-interested coward, but with almost no urging and just a low-key level of shaming, he turns his whole life around. That’s the thing with Aries, you can’t really argue with them but you can convince them to do better simply by doing better yourself and pointing it out to them.
Clare: Just point us in a better direction and we’ll figure it out.
Sara: I didn’t get into Doctor Who until incredibly late in the game with the latter part of the Twelfth Doctor’s story, and that whole saga is still the best to this day. Why? BILL! Bill, who I love.
Clare: Bill is incredible.
Sara: Bill is so funny and smart and cool and nice. Like most Libras, she’s very balanced, but the world is seldom the equality-driven, peace-loving utopia Libras want it to be. She also falls in love with a sentient pool of water, which seems like a very Libra thing to do.
Clare: I mean, Libras appreciate the finer, rarer things in life, and I can’t think of anything much rarer than “cute girl who is also a sentient pool of water.”
Sara: Bill has a great moral compass and remains optimistic through most of her endeavors with the Doctor, which is honestly heartbreaking because between them they have two of the most tragic stories in all of Whoverse canon. Bill doesn’t let things get her down, even when she literally becomes a Cyberman.
Clare: That unflappable optimism, even in the face of what is honestly one of the most terrifying things that can happen to a companion on Doctor Who! Excuse me, I have to go sob now.
Sara: Also, great sense of style. I’ve been seeking out the silver jacket / rainbow tank top she sports in her first appearances and my life may never be complete until I find them.
Sara: The Black Mirror episode "San Junipero" gave us the classic Cancer/Leo match-up. These are two signs that tend to fall for each other, and why wouldn’t they? The sensitive, passionate, attention-giving (on their own terms) Cancer and the glamorous, high-energy, attention-seeking (on their own terms) Leo. A match made in Zodiac Heaven. As long as it continues to balance on that carefully cultivated line, all is right and good with the universe. The second it tilts, all heck breaks loose.
Clare: Which means that the Cancer and the Leo need to be on the same page to make this work. To wit: communication!
Sara: I like that Kelly actually calls Yorkie out for demanding so much of her.
Clare: It’s very refreshing! Look, I’m never going to complain about fairy tale queer romances, but I will always prefer queer romance that actually talks about what it means to be in an equitable relationship.
Sara: Cancers do give a lot, but it tends to mean that they also take a lot, and sometimes they throw a lot of their own baggage right into the trunk of people’s car expecting them to deliver it where it needs to go. I think this metaphor is holding up fine, because the annoyed Leo will drive off with the car, toss the bags, and return a week later. Or never return.
Clare: It’s a gamble that Yorkie takes and she’s lucky she won!
Seven of Nine: Scorpio
Sara: You always have to be careful not to villainize Scorpios, because they are a sign that is so often judged by the very worst among them. Yet, there are truly transcendent Scorpios in this world. Hence, Picard's Seven of Nine, the most transcendent of them all.
Clare: Seven of Nine: the Patron Saint of Good Scorpios.
Sara: Seven of Nine plays it cool, but she’s working through this complex maze of hidden memories, emotions, traumas, and dreams that only seems to grow the more she explores it, and, well, that’s a pretty great analogy for Scorpios, who are generally doing pretty much the same thing throughout most of their lives from what I can tell.
Clare: I feel like Seven’s internal life looks a lot like old visualizations of the Internet and “mainframes”: very clean but very busy. Maybe with a couple of little Trons in there for flavor, I don’t know.
Sara: Have you ever hung out with a Scorpio? The tendency to say sudden, deeply revealing things in the middle of casual conversations is there, I’m just saying.
Clare: You haven’t lived until a Scorpio turns to you and identifies your core emotional wound at 11 in the morning.
Elida Al-Feyr: Capricorn
Sara: Vagrant Queen's Elida is a little more fun-loving and adventurous than your regular Capricorn, but who knows how many air sign placements she has in her chart. You know what I mean?
Clare: I’m assuming Elida’s original star chart was destroyed in the revolution, so we will truly never know. Capricorn might seem, at first blush, like an odd choice, but hear us out.
Sara: Elida, on a surface level, resists responsibility, which isn’t generally a trait of the hyper-responsible Capricorn. But, if you look a little closer, she’s really just being highly selective of what responsibility she’s willing to take on. She’s a great leader, but that’s because she’s agreed with herself to lead in these specific instances. Her lack of trust in others is definitely all from learned experience. Capricorns won’t stick their necks out for just anyone, but the crew they choose, they will go all the way for. While criticizing them and sometimes judging them, but out of love.
Clare: If the crew doesn’t get constructive criticism, then how will they learn?
Victor Strand: Capricorn
Clare: When you’re dealing with a character in a zombie apocalypse scenario like The Walking Dead, you’re dealing with a character in survival mode full time, which tends to exacerbate your least pleasant traits. Case in point: Strand, whose rakish life of crime takes on a much more sinister air when people are supposed to trust him with their lives.
Sara: I’ve seen him compared to Randall Flagg from The Stand and he does absolutely have that vibe of being kind of a steely, cunning character. I would argue that he certainly gets a lot more humanity and characterization than Flagg.
Clare: Oh, definitely.
Sara: When you get to see inside of who Strand truly is, you see this deep well of trauma that he isn’t fully able to work through. Capricorns always depend on their own inner strength and leadership skills in times of crisis, so let’s just say the shoe fits.
Clare: I’d make a joke about how this is why you have to start going to therapy before the apocalypse hits, but given current circumstances, that’s just a sad, objective statement!
Sara: Nia on Supergirl contains all the great elements of a Libra — she fights for justice, she passionately cares about others, and even when she finds it difficult to advocate for herself, she’s always ready to go to the mat for the disadvantaged.
Clare: Nia’s actual superpower might be dreaming the future, but I’d argue that empathy is right up there. She’s experienced a lot of ugliness from other people, be it because she’s trans or because she’s half-alien, and yet, she’s always going to use her resources to help other people. And that doesn’t just mean superpowers; she used to be a political speechwriter. She’s got that Clark Kent vibe of “the most good by whatever means possible,” and I like that.
Sara: CW!Supergirl is also almost definitely a Libra, so it’s cute how much Nia reminds her of herself.
Sara: Ah, yes. Klaus, this wreck of a human.
Clare: If you’re unfamiliar with Klaus, just know that he’s introduced in the television adaptation of The Umbrella Academy by walking out of rehab and immediately getting back up to his old tricks.
Sara: This is a Pisces who went through massive amounts of suffering in his life and is kind of hanging on by a thread. Some people look at this Klaus and go, “how sassy and funny he is!” but there is a sad, broken little heart at the center of it all and a tragedy he just can’t get past.
Clare: And that’s before he forcibly travels in time, experiences real love for the first time, and loses said real love, which doesn’t help his core emotional wound. Somebody get a Scorpio in here, stat.
Sara: Klaus is the kind of Pisces for whom reality and rules barely even apply, and let’s face it, the Pisces relationship with reality is fairly tenuous as it stands.
Clare: Wouldn’t your relationship with reality be paper-thin if you were forced to talk with dead people 24/7?