Ships. In entertainment, and especially, in fandom, we live and die by them. Which is why every Friday, we’ll be focusing on a couple, analyzing why we ship them, and overall, just proclaiming our eternal love for those couples that make us say:
I will go down with this ship.
I’ve made it no secret about my love for Karamel — shouted it loud and proud from the rooftops while haters attempted, unsuccessfully, to bring me down. But that’s the thing about Karamel, they’re a ship worth fighting for. And they’re one of the best things to happen to Supergirl.
So let’s dive into the reasons why I will FOREVER go down with this ship:
Lord knows I could do an entire post about Kara and Mon-El’s chemistry — and I might have already done just that — but ships are ships because of chemistry. And the chemistry between Melissa Benoist and Chris Wood is the stuff of legend.
After all, the chemistry was so sizzling that Melissa and Chris got married in real life — with a baby on the way!
But like I said, ships are born out of chemistry between two characters. And it was evident from the start that Kara and Mon-El had a connection. Even before I realized that the showrunners were going to take them in a romantic direction. There was this feeling that I wanted to see them in more scenes together. And by time their first kiss rolled around in the midseason finale, it felt right.
While Karamel certainly appears to be planned — unlike some other great ships that were unexpected — it was certainly the benefit of the great chemistry between Melissa and Chris. It took something that, maybe, the showrunners didn’t expect to become as big as it did, and it made it a relationship that people still love to this day.
Watching Kara and Mon-El together is easy, and it always brings a smile to my face. The quick jabs, the effortless banter, the longing looks, the proximity, and when they finally kissed — good lord.
THEY ACCEPT EACH OTHER – FLAWS AND ALL
I don’t know about you, but I don’t want perfect. I want flaws. I want characters that remind me of myself — of my life, of this world. Because no one goes through life without messing up. And, sometimes, it’s a colossal fuck-up. But it’s how someone responds to their mistakes, how they choose to address their flaws, that speak volumes about a person.
From the start, people have unjustly hated Mon-El for not being perfect. Which is funny considering that no character on Supergirl — and someone more than others — have shown a penchant for their imperfections.
But flaws aren’t all bad. Because they remind us that there’s always room for growth as an individual. No one ever stops learning, and no one ever stops growing as a person.
And then there are people that inspire us to be better. We see the good that they accomplish in their life, and we want to emulate them. We want to make them feel the same way we feel about them, as if we could repay them. They help us grow into the people that we want to be. And sometimes, they make us better.
Kara and Mon-El have been those people for each other. When we met Mon-El, he was a spoiled prince from Daxam that had no semblance of life outside the riches of royal life. So, naturally, we he came to a new world, he had to learn some hard lessons. And it wasn’t always pretty.
But the thing that I — and surely, Kara — loves about Mon-El is that he’s never denied his flaws. He accepts them, as they’re a part of him. But perhaps more importantly, Mon-El has actively worked to become a better person. And he has become one.
And even Kara, for her heroism, isn’t perfect. She’ll be the first to tell you. She’s made mistakes, made decisions she wishes she could take back. But seeing how Mon-El has grown into the man he is — seven years later — inspires her to do the same. Reminds her that we never stop growing as people. And, more importantly, reminds us of the effect people can have on others.
At first glance, Kara and Mon-El were never meant to be. After all, Kara was a girl from Krypton and Mon-El a boy from Daxam. And they were worlds at odds with each other.
But that’s the dangerous thing about preconceived notions. If you focus on what others tell you about something — rather than discover it for yourself — you might miss out on something beautiful.
Case in point, Karamel.
When Kara learned that Mon-El was from Daxam, it was easy for her to place this misguided anger on him because that’s what her world had taught her. But she soon realized that it wasn’t fair of her to not give him a chance to prove to her who he really is. And while Mon-El was far from perfect, it was his ability to address his flaws and accept them that ultimately showed he was someone worth taking a chance on.
Much like Romeo and Juliet, it would be easy for people to tell Kara and Mon-El that they can’t be together. And there have been some that have tried. But ultimately, the heart wants what the heart wants. And love isn’t something that can be controlled — which makes it equally terrifying yet beautiful.
THEY MAKE EACH OTHER HAPPY
Happiness isn’t something to take lightly, or for granted. Trust, there are plenty of people that haven’t had the opportunity to experience true happiness. And that happiness was something that was infectious with Kara and Mon-El from the start.
Even before Kara and Mon-El were officially together, you could sense that they relaxed the other. Made each other feel like they could just be themselves and not try to be someone else. And that reminder that you can be yourself without fear of rejection is something so powerful.
But when Kara and Mon-El were together, there was pure bliss between them. The kind of happiness that — even after a couple years — still shines through the gifs that continue to live on. Kara and Mon-El were genuinely happy. They were both in love, for the first time. And they didn’t have to worry about being something other than themselves.
I think part of the reason Karamel resonated so strongly with fans — both those that ship Karamel and those that are wrong — is because that happiness was so palpable between them. Those that shipped felt the love through their televisions, and those that didn’t ship them felt the same thing.
THEY’LL ALWAYS LOVE EACH OTHER
Sacrifice isn’t easy. But that’s the beauty in it. A person loves someone so much that they’re willing to sacrifice their own happiness, their own love, to make sure the other can thrive.
And, unfortunately, sacrifice has separated our Karamel — for now. Kara and Mon-El are heroes through and through, and both have a responsibility to their worlds. And sometimes the hardest part about being a hero is understanding that it requires the kind of sacrifice that not everyone can understand or attempt in their own right.
But one of the beautiful things about Karamel’s relationship — the reason why we continue to love them — is that they’ll always love each other. It’s evident in what transpired with Mon-El’s return in Season 3 — when Kara still clearly was in love with him and, seven years later, Mon-El had to physically and emotionally distance himself from Kara because he was still head over heels in love with her — but wanted to do right by his wife.
Kara and Mon-El’s timing hasn’t always been right. But we’re going to keep believing that, when all is said and done, they’ll get another chance. Because contrary to what people believe about heroes, they’re allowed to love. More than that, they’re encouraged to love. It’s what motivates them to keep fighting, it’s what motivates them to make the kind of sacrifice that’s required in this line of work.
I refuse to believe Kara and Mon-El’s story is over. There’s no romantic love on this show that has come close to Karamel, which is why I believe — when Supergirl inevitably comes to an end — that the showrunners will make an attempt to bring Chris Wood back and give Karamel a proper ending.
Kara deserves a happy ending, romance and all. And Supergirl has only ever shown us that Mon-El is her happy ending.