Shipping is one of Tumblr’s favorite hobbies, drawing hundreds of millions of engagements each year. On Tumblr, shipping exists in many forms: fan art, fan fiction, manipulated GIFs and videos, and roleplay, just to name a few. It’s a common practice no matter what fandom you’re in—from television shows and movies to K-pop and video games. On Tumblr, the most popular type is slash—ships comprised of two male characters. Out of the top 150, 95 (63%) were guy/guy love.
We grabbed the top 30 ships from 2013—2016. 2013—2015 were ranked by reblogs alone. 2016 and 2017 are ranked by their Trending Score. This includes volume of searches, original posts, and likes in addition to reblogs. We’ve sorted the source content behind each year’s top ships below.
TV | 40%
Music | 40%
Anime | 10%
Celebrities | 6.67%
K-Pop | 3.33%
2013’s most reblogged ships were predominantly slash (76.67%). The remaining 23.33% were all heterosexual (het) ships—there were no femslash ships in the top 30 that year.
The most reblogged ship of the year was from an anime: MakoHaru (Nanase Haruka and Tachibana Makoto, Free! series).
TV | 40%
Anime | 20%
Music | 13.33%
Celebrities | 10%
Movies | 10%
Web Celebrities | 6.67%
Though slash (66.67%) and het ships (26.67%) comprised most of the list in 2014, femslash ships (6.67%) made their debut.
2014’s top ship was Destiel (Dean Winchester and Castiel, Supernatural). Though the ship is not canon (yet), the 200th episode “Fan Fiction” paid homage to it.
Destination Toast (@destinationtoast) has spent the past few years working with fandom and fic data. You can find all of her research, along with reblogs of posts created by others in different fandoms, on her side blog, ToastyStats (@toastystats).
I wanted so badly to lie down next to her on the couch, to wrap my arms around her and sleep. Not fu#k, like in those movies. Not even have sex. Just sleep together in the most innocent sense of the phrase. But I lacked the courage and she had a boyfriend and I was gawky and she was gorgeous and I was hopelessly boring and she was endlessly fascinating. So I walked back to my room and collapsed on the bottom bunk, thinking that if people were rain, I was drizzle and she was hurricane.