Cloud’s Final Fantasy VII Rebirth Actor Says Shippers Are Too Damn Horny

Cloud’s Final Fantasy VII Rebirth Actor Says Shippers Are Too Damn Horny

Cody Christian, the voice of Cloud Strife in the Final Fantasy VII Remake, has some bold (but reasonable) feelings on how shippers direct conversations in fandom toward romantic interpretations. Anyone who is even tangentially aware of Final Fantasy VII knows that there’s a decades-long shipping war between fans who want the RPG’s broody protagonist to get with either the boxing bartender Tifa or the friendly flower seller Aerith. It turns out Christian has feelings on the matter after his time voicing the Buster Sword-wielding hero.

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In an exchange on X (formerly Twitter), Christian posted a piece of art depicting Cloud shouting Tifa’s name by @sulahasbackpain, to which a user responded asking if the actor was trying to start a shipping war in the responses. Christian said folks were allowed their opinions and that after working on the supernatural teen drama Teen Wolf, he’s privy to how these conversations go. But he also says that, in his experience, shipping wars come from a narrow view of how characters can relate to each other.

“Here’s the issue.. ‘shippers’ crumble under the idea that a character is allowed to have significant relationships with MULTIPLE characters. This provides overarching depth. The need to overtly sexualize every relationship can ruin great story development.”

Christian is referring to the debate amongst Final Fantasy VII fans about Cloud’s relationships with Tifa and Aerith, but the concept is universal across multiple fandoms. As a self-proclaimed shipper who is always looking to pit two strong men against one another in a literal sense, I can acknowledge that he’s not wrong. Shipping can be a fun thought exercise that also gives queer people an outlet to express themselves and their love for characters in ways a lot of mainstream media won’t. But, I’ve seen how these interpretations can often create a very rigid, diluted vision of characters and their relationships, which can sometimes extend into unhealthy relationships/dialogues as that interpretation starts to eclipse what’s actually in the text.

As a mostly casual Final Fantasy VII fan over the years, my understanding was that Cloud’s love interest was Tifa, and Aerith’s was Zack, and the elaborate, intertwined nature of Cloud and Zack’s existence and shared memories was why that got complicated. No spoilers, but given Final Fantasy VII Remake and its sequel Rebirth’s revamped timeline, I’m interested to see how these games handle those wires crossing, but even if the greater Compilation of Final Fantasy VII has addressed this, it doesn’t seem to stop the shipping wars from happening.

Final Fantasy VII Rebirth is coming to PlayStation 5 on February 29, and we’ll see if its remixed timeline ends the shipping wars once and for all. But if I’ve learned anything on Sephiroth’s internet, it’s that shipping can survive even the most cataclysmic plot development if you believe hard enough.

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