Hey April! You're are always so critical, and I love your opinions and how sure you are when you're talking about it. So I was wondering, why do you ship Bellarke? I would love to read your reasons.
Why do I ship Bellarke? The basic reason:
The show wants me to. They’ve been setting up the story of Bellarke (both as individuals and as a couple) since the first Season.
The more complicated reason:
I very rarely see a relationship on TV (and especially the CW) as carefully crafted as Bellarke has been. It’s enemies to friends to lovers done right. Bellamy and Clarke began as antagonists in a world that was trying to kill them all and struggled to overcome the inherent class differences (which is why Clarke has problematic white savior tendencies, btw) in order to create a co-leadership dynamic that was so great to look at.
By the time the Season 1 finale rolled around, we had two individuals who didn’t just need what the other offered (Bellamy brought heart to the table, while Clarke brought logic) they wanted it and recognized that together their potential for leadership was so much greater than individually. This is the Season where Need and Trust are established in their relationship.
In Season 2, we spend the first half watching them literally fight to get back to one another? And when they are reunited? It’s explosive. Then we watch them go on their separate journeys over the rest of the Season, both struggling to find a balance inside themselves (and both failing). Without each other, both lose help and both find that their leadership is just not as effective. This is the Season where Love is established (definitively on Clarke’s part) in their relationship.
Season 3 was rough for us, I’ll give you that. Our ship spent the first half of the Season seemingly on opposite sides (I say seemingly because when push came to shove, they were both doing what they thought was necessary to save their people) of a war. They’d both found love with other individuals (Gina and L/xa) and both were happy with those two, even if just for a moment.
However, I’d argue that both Gina and L/xa represent the same thing for Bellamy and Clarke. A love that was true and real, absolutely, but that was also an escape. Neither Clarke or Bellamy were their true selves when they were with L/xa and Gina. Both refused outright to discuss their trauma with their love interests (also of note-L/xa’s refusal to discuss parts of her own past with Clarke), both love interests existed in a world apart from the horrors that Bellamy and Clarke were dealing with on an every day basis (Bellamy about Gina- “Gina was real.”, Clarke about L/xa- “L/xa was special.”) and both love interests were murdered (notably wounded in almost the exact same ironic way-Gina, an Arkadian (technologically advanced), killed by stab wound to the abdomen, L/xa, a Grounder (technology resistant), killed by a gunshot wound to the abdomen).
With each other however, Bellamy and Clarke don’t have to put up a front. They’ve witnessed the trauma the other has suffered and in most cases, have been a participant (Charlotte, the Ring of Fire, The Mt. Weather Irradiation, etc). They are the only two people in their world who truly know the weight of the actions they’ve committed because they’ve committed them together. It’s why Clarke felt confident she could leave Bellamy at the end of Season 2, it’s why Bellamy felt comfortable opening up to Clarke in 108, it’s why they had that “moment” in 403, it’s why their leadership (and their relationship) is front and center in Season 4.
Clarke and Bellamy can only be real, can only be their true, vulnerable selves, can only show how broken they are with each other. Without each other, they falter, just look at 404. Look at Bellamy, who is telling Kane that he is hopeless and compare that to the Bellamy of 403, who tells Clarke he has hope because they’re still breathing. Look at Clarke, who in Episodes 401-3 was been able to present a strong front to the public (even if she’s unsure in private) and compare that to the Clarke of 404 who is visibly worried, who doesn’t know how to fix the anger of the mob, who has to be saved by Jaha.
I love Bellamy and Clarke because they are complete with each other in a way they’ve never been with anyone else. I just….love them.