- See also: Fanfiction involving Creek
Though a fanon pairing in existence for well over a decade prior, on October 24th, 2015, SouthParkStudios.com acknowledged Creek's existence and requested Creek fanart from South Park fans for use in an upcoming episode. The resulting episode "Tweek x Craig" essentially canonized the ship and provided a perspective from the shows' creators on the fandom's shipping culture.
Craig and Tweek's first interaction in the series, shortly after both were introduced, was in the popular episode "Tweek vs. Craig", where the boys, on account of a bet they had made, claimed to Tweek and Craig that each had insulted the other, and convinced them to fight in front of the entire school. When it turned out neither of them knew how to fight, they had them trained for it. Craig was trained by Cartman, in Sumo wrestling and Tweek by Stan and Kyle, in boxing. After the fight, both boys were hospitalized and seemed to be getting along fairly well, but the kids fooled them into fighting again soon after.The relationship between Craig and Tweek after this episode is highly ambiguous, as they share no major direct interaction between the third and seventeenth seasons. Several background sequences, primarily but not limited to the fifth through seventh seasons, seem to depict them as friends, and animators often placed them next to one another in larger sequences, seeming to show them as part of the same social circle and strongly suggesting a friendship had developed off-screen, though its exact nature was/is unknown. Tweek's limited role in recent seasons has made it very difficult to ascertain his exact relationships with other characters in the series, even the main boys.
In a famous example of these ambiguous interactions, the episode "South Park is Gay!" depicted Tweek as a member of Craig and Those Guys, and by extension friends with Craig, Token and Jason, however, Matt and Trey provide no dialogue for Tweek in the finished episode. By the next run of episodes in "Good Times With Weapons", Tweek and Jason are no longer part of Craig's inner social circle, replaced by Clyde and Jimmy, who remain part of the group in most episodes after this point, though animators continued to sometimes place Craig and Tweek in the background together. However, some fans believe there are may have been lingering antagonism between them in this interim period, due to the ambiguity of their relationship - they fought in both "Tweek vs. Craig" and the later "Tweek x Craig".
During the seventeenth season, interactions between Tweek and Craig suddenly resumed - in "Informative Murder Porn", Craig, Tweek and Jimmy confronted Stan, Kyle and Kenny to discuss their parents' MineCraft activities, and shortly after in "Black Friday", they both pick the PlayStation 4 and side with each other.
As a result of these mixed interactions, Creek is a pairing that has a unique appeal as both a love-hate relationship, based on "Tweek Vs. Craig", similar to Kyman and an appeal as more of a friendly and caring relationship, more akin to Style.
HintsTweek and Craig can be seen standing side by side in the background in numerous episodes including "Ginger Kids", where they are trapped in a cage together, and in "The Wacky Molestation Adventure", and where they are on the same side of the town. Tweek and Craig can also be seen sitting together at multiple school assemblies. In "Marjorine", they hide next to each other, behind the bushes, and in "You're Getting Old", they sit near one another at Stan's birthday table.
In "How To Eat With Your Butt", they appear in the background, shoving each other and fighting over a spot at Kenny's window, and as Tweek chose to fit in next to Craig, before Craig backed away and went behind Tweek, letting him occupy the front spot.
This ship was considered a fanon crack pairing, even among its most ardent supporters, until the Season 19 episode "Tweek x Craig", where the school's new Asian female students begin drawing 'yaoi' artwork of Tweek and Craig together, and they are showcased in the school and near Whole Foods at an Art Fair. Though initially confused and angered by the assumption, Tweek and Craig eventually choose to create a pretend relationship and stage a fake "break-up" in order to stop the production of the pictures. Craig encourages Tweek to act out and make it look real, only for Tweek to accidentally humiliate Craig by making him out to be a cheater, causing the school to shun the latter. After seeing how miserable the town is without their relationship, and an accepting speech from Craig's father, they choose to "get back together" and reconcile, inspiring the town once again.
There is still much debate, even among Creek supporters, about whether or not this episode constitutes a canonization, and it is generally believed this ambiguity is intentional. It is important to note that while both characters maintain a heterosexual attitude, it is very common in Yaoi manga for male characters to continue to claim heterosexuality despite engaging in homosexual acts, and this may be part of the satirical and parody element of the episode. A key example is how Tweek suggests that Craig has inspired him and that he wants to help Craig with whatever is "hurting" him, a common Yaoi trope.
The pairing has been referenced in the background of multiple episodes released since - for example, Cartman references their relationship in "Naughty Ninjas", they openly hold hands in the school hallway in "PC Principal Final Justice", and Butters references their relationship in "Weiners Out". They appear together in almost all background sequences as well since this. Despite the breakup of many other canon couples in the twentieth season, Craig and Tweek's relationship has remained intact.
By the events of the Season 21 episode, "Put it Down", their relationship is more grounded. Craig notably refers to Tweek as "babe" and "honey" a few times, even when speaking in private, though Tweek does not use such terms of endearment. Craig tries to calm down Tweek at the urging of his friends but eventually learns to be supportive of helping him understand his emotions, and they sing a song to their class together at the episode's closure.
South Park: The Fractured But Whole
|“|| Now it is the time, Lend me your strength! - Tweek
Okay...Let's work together! - Craig
The overflowing love becomes one and fills the world! - Both
Ultimate: Eros Eruption
Their relationship is explored even further. When the player arrives at Craig's house, Craig (as Super Craig) tells the player that his looking for his guinea pig (Stripe #4), which belongs to him and his "ex-boyfriend" Tweek. During a confrontation between "Coon and Friends" and "Freedom Pals", Tweek and Craig are seen arguing about being a duo and about walking out of the group.
Later throughout the story, Craig asked the player to deliver a note to Tweek requesting his laptop. As Tweek reads the letter he said that he will give him his laptop if Craig returns Stripe #4 since he paid for him. Craig agrees and sends the player to get the guinea pig. After the player gives the guinea pig to Tweek, Tweek gives him the laptop; but before he can give it back to Craig, Tweek's father stops the player and tells him that he appreciates him trying to help them. He believes that they just need relationship counseling and tasks the player with giving them a Counseling Referral. Both Tweek and Craig agreed only if the player comes as well.
At Relationship Counseling, Mr. Mackey tries to get them to talk about their quarrel with no luck. Mr. Mackey then decides to do an exercise with them and introduces 5 different students each with a Resentments, Expectations, Accusation, Victimization and Withdrawal shirt. Mr. Mackey tells them that they need to overcome all of this before telling them to fight them. After beating Expectations, Mr. Mackey tells them that Expectations doesn't go down easy and that there's always more expectations, which brings more students for them to battle. Mr. Mackey encourages them to work together if they're gonna eliminate all of the Expectations. Craig agrees and convinces Tweek that they can do it together, which unlocks their ultimate: Eros Eruption. With the battle won, both Tweek and Craig feel much better and reconcile their relationship.
Craig has generally been portrayed as the dominant one in the Creek relationship due to the fact that he seems to be described as more stereotypically masculine, physically and personality-wise, generally being tougher and more down-to-earth than Tweek, who is portrayed with more 'feminine' associated traits as emotional, anxious and fearful. The fact that Craig is animated as slightly taller than many other child characters also contributes to this.
However, in recent years, more and more occurrences of Tweek being dominant have been happening in fanart and fanfiction. The pairing is commonly referred to as Twig, and has gained popularity. However, dominant Craig still remains the most popular version, as is reflected in the episode "Tweek x Craig". Some believe this may be due to where Craig was announced three pounds skinnier than Tweek in "Tweek vs Craig", thus making him the "weaker" one due to the stereotype that the submissive ones are normally skinnier and smaller. Tumblr user Ukaisha offered a financial reward to anyone who could get Twig fanart into "Tweek x Craig".
Some fans find the use of application of gender and dominance roles to the characters can lead to narrative problems, especially among inexperienced writers, who may allow role stereotypes to override the character's canon personalities in favor of sticking closer to dominant Yaoi roles. This is often avoided by more experienced and self-aware writers, but it is nonetheless a common association of the ship.
As mentioned above, the canonization of the ship remains a controversial topic with fans due to the ambiguity of their final moment in the episode's storyline. Many fans were disappointed the episode seemed to imply the characters resumed their relationship only to make others happy and therefore had their agency taken away from them by others, while other fans felt that the characters' relationship is genuine and should be treated as such. Multiple topics have been started at South Park Studios looking for clarification if the characters are genuinely homosexual. This issue remains a point of contention and debate among fans.
The excitement amongst Creek fans since the "Tweek x Craig" episode aired, and even the ensuing controversy itself, have inspired some backlash on social media websites such as Tumblr, where many fans who are not interested in the couple often become overwhelmed with the amount of content that is produced for it, while fans who do like the couple remain sensitive to criticism about its portrayal. Some fans feel the relationship is becoming overused, while others feel that the show should use them more to increase LGBTQA+ representation.
(also note that in more recent episodes, such as moss piglets and Super hard pcness, subtle hints towards this ship's canonicity is occassionally displayed in the background)
The ship's canonization became more apparent following the "Tweek x Craig" episode. In Season 19 episode 7 "Naughty Ninjas" Cartman insists that Kenny and Token are "gay" for playing ninjas until he realizes that it's cool and attempts to take back his statement. This backtracking becomes a running gag in the episode, which escalates when Cartman declares "Why would I say something homophobic about the way Tweek and Craig make love?" on television whilst being interviewed.
In Season 19 episode 8 "Sponsored Content", Tweek and Craig can be seen talking by their lockers before PC Principal's freak out. Likewise in episode 9 of the season, they are seen sitting together in the school cafeteria. They are spotted holding hands in the halls of episode 10, and in the first episode of the following season "Member Berries", the two can be seen leaving the gymnasium with their parents after the national anthem comes to a conclusion. In episode 4 "Wieners Out", Butters points to the couple and says "...and don't think you're safe either Tweek and Craig. Just 'cause you're gay doesn't mean you aren't looked down upon for being boys."
The war between boys and girls as a result of an anonymous internet troll has led to Heidi mapping out emoji's used by fellow classmates in order to determine who the user might be. Apparent on Heidi's wall in Season 20 Episode 6, Tweek and Craig are seen beside each other using emoji's that reflect their personality; and imply that they use it often. For example, Craig uses the flexing arm emoji and Tweek uses renditions of the screaming/shock faces along with the coffee emoji. Two additional emojis are shown between the two; the rainbow and the heart emoji, potentially implying one of two things: 1) Heidi is simply stating that they are a couple, or 2) The couple use these emoji's exclusively with each other. The latter is more likely given that Heidi explained her emojianalysis by saying "People can hide behind a fake name, but the way they use emojis gives them away." This means that Tweek and Craig actively use the heart emoji and send it to each other.
Other references to the two's relationship occur following their initiation as a couple. In Season 20 Episode 10, Kyle exclusively drags the two into a quick video chat asking them to reply to all the horrible shit he said about gay people. Despite the quick interaction, Craig finds a chance to ask Kyle "Why'd you say horrible shit about gay people?" before the two were dismissed. Stan also refers to the two as a gay couple in Season 21 Episode 2 “Put it Down”. After Tweek’s musical attack about the president, the boys tell Craig to do something about Tweek. When Craig asks what he’s supposed to do, Stan answers “He’s you’re boyfriend dude.” Interestingly enough, Craig has never countered this claim after the “Tweek x Craig” episode. In fact, he answers Stan by saying “He’s not gonna listen to me. He never does when he’s emotional,” implying that he has gotten very close to Tweek and recognizes his habits and behaviors.
This episode did well to establish “Creek”. Craig calmly talks Tweek through his panic using a calm voice and logical thinking. Pet names arise such as “honey” and “babe” within a private conversation. Later that day, Craig is shown to enter Tweek’s kitchen with ease, telling him to calm down and presenting him with a fidget spinner he had bought to help the other with his anxiety. Despite doing his best to comfort Tweek, Craig’s cupcake advice goes awry when the President continues to make mocking tweets to the North Koreans.
In the next day, more awful activities feed into Tweek’s panic. Later that night, the blond enters Craig’s room (with ease as well), kindly turns on the light and shuts the door behind him before walking up to scream in his boyfriend’s ear, inevitably waking him from his slumber. Craig simply let’s out a startled yet monotonous groan before saying “Hey Tweek”. He continues to try and calm the other, and makes plans to take Tweek somewhere fun to take his mind off the news.
As their amusement park date progresses, Tweek becomes more and more anxious at the events unfolding, and more and more upset at Craig for “always problem solving”. He expresses that he needs something else from Craig, but is unable to articulate it. Tweek screams in frustration after calling Craig out for trying to make his problems go away as a result of him being “freaked out” by Tweek’s emotions. Their argument leads to Craig surprisingly losing his cool and yelling back, which he recognizes as ‘losing control of his emotions’ before storming off.
The next day in school, Heidi steals the mic from Cartman and says two very important sentences that relate the Tweek and Craig’s current situation: “It’s not always about problem solving” and “People need help sorting out their emotions sometimes”. Craig’s mouth visibly parts as Heidi continues her speech, implying that he realizes where he went wrong with Tweek and what he needs to do in order to truly support the other. Craig flashes a quick smile before running off to Tweek’s home given the other had skipped school that day. When Craig confronts him, he acknowledges Tweek’s feelings. He does not throw facts at him, but rather helps the other sort out his emotions and find his own solution. At the end of their conversation, Tweek and Craig exchange a gentle smile, and Tweek softly thanks the other.
The episode ends with the couple’s musical performance; Tweek expertly playing the piano and Craig singing. The two cap it off holding hands and smiling at each other.
In Episode 8 of the season, the two are sitting beside each other during recess while casually talking, and again in Episode 9 the two are present together. They hold hands while running down the hall, Craig pulling Tweek along while saying “Come on Tweek, hurry!” The two sit together on the couch when watching TV with their friends, and Craig places a hand on Tweek’s shoulder while the two laugh at a funny scene.
In the final episode of Season 21 “Splatty Tomato”, Craig comforts Tweek on a wooden bench as the other describes his experience seeing the President. The two continuously hold hands throughout the rest of the episode while listening to kickass 80’s music from Pandora’s 80’s channel on Craig’s phone. Craig’s mom mentions her missing son and Tweek when the boy’s parents start to worry about their absence. The season finale ends with the two side-by-side; cementing their relationship as something that had grown from a “fake relationship” to something more legitimate over time. The two are extremely comfortable in each other’s presence, and have learned quite a bit about one another after spending more and more time together.
The couple was the most popular Crack Pairing until its subsequent canonization and is the most popular pairing in the fandom after Kyman and Style, with a rather large amount of fanart and fanfiction dedicated to it. On FanFiction.Net, most stories are dedicated to Style, followed by Creek, then Kyman. This now therefore makes it the most popular Canon Pairing in the fandom, though whether or not it is truly canon is left ambiguous and therefore still a matter of significant debate within the South Park community.
- On Tumblr, when responding to a photo post involving Kyle saying "But the point is, there’s nothing about it that means Tweek and Craig are actually gay at all.", the South Park Digital blog responded, "Are you SURE?", implying that they actually do feel for each other. The blog also posted a gif from "Tweek x Craig" and tagged it with "creek is canon".
- "The Fractured But Whole” Trivia:
- If the player decides to attack Tweak with Craig instead of punching him (like all other enemies), Craig pushes Tweak.
- While we don't know the circumstances behind Tweek's outfit choice, he is wearing what is either Craig's clothes or something that looks almost exactly like Craig's clothes as his superhero costume.
- They have joint custody of Stripe #4, who Tweek bought for Craig.
- If you collect all the Creek yaoi fanart, you get an achievement that depicts Tweek resting his head on Craig's shoulder.
- In the downloadable wallpapers from Uplay, you can see Tweek's silhouette in Craig’s wallpaper and vice versa.
- CraigxTweek-FC - Creek fanclub on DeviantART
- Tweek-x-Craig-Club - Creek fanclub on DeviantART
- THE-CREEK-CLAN - Creek fanclub on DeviantART
- Playing In The Creek - Creek Appreciation blog on Tumblr
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