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Style (sometimes Kyan) is the romantic pairing of Stan Marsh and his best friend, Kyle Broflovski. It is the most popular pairing in the South Park fandom, and as a result is subject to frequent criticism.

See also: Fanfiction involving Style

Origin

The pairing stems from the general fact that the two are best friends and have shown to care a lot for each other, more so than other characters, with some scenes that are read as implying a homosexual relationship between the two. It is generally considered unlikely that they are actually intended to be gay by South Park co-creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone.

In the series, the first mention of a possible relationship between the two was brought forth by Stan's father, Randy, who told his son "You can't just hang out with your buddy Kyle all the time. People will think you guys are, you know, funny." in "Two Guys Naked in a Hot Tub". The episode suggests all characters are "a little gay".

Some fans also cite Matt and Trey basing the characters on themselves due to the misconception that Matt and Trey are homosexuals due to their appearances in Cannibal! The Musical and BASEketball, the latter of which includes a kiss between them.

Hints

Throughout the run of the series, supporters of the pairing have pointed out scenes that, through images and dialogue, can be seen to imply that the two may be leading into a romantic relationship.

Mutual

StyleFollowthatEgg

Stan makes up with Kyle in "Follow that Egg!"

  • In "Super Best Friends", after Stan saved Kyle's life, Kyle thanked Stan for it and said to him, "Stan, you're my super best friend." Then Stan said the same thing back to him. They both smiled and looked at each other kinda lovingly. Then Cartman came up and said "Aw, that's so sweet. You guys wanna get a room so you can make out for awhile ?" Stan and Kyle both shoved Cartman onto the ground and started kicking him and hurting him in a way so painful and raunchy that it wasn't even funny ... it was hilarious.
  • In "Follow that Egg!", Stan became very jealous towards Kyle about him and Wendy working together. The two were later paired up together, although Stan remained malcontent. Kyle later explains he only wanted an 'A' on the project and not a relationship with Wendy Testaburger. Kyle later asks him if he really thinks his hat is stupid, a comment Stan made in an act of jealously on the phone. Stan puts his arm around Kyle's shoulders and says, "As a matter of fact, I think it is the nicest hat I have ever known".
  • During the "Previously on South Park" montage at the start of "The Return of Chef", Kyle held Stan close to him when the two were watching the sun set. It's arguable as being non-canon as it was a flashback of a nonexistent episode.
  • The episode "Guitar Queer-O" is chockful of references - the entire episode is spoofed around stereotypical band stories, and as a result, invokes many tropes involving breaking up and reformation, but as Stan and Kyle are the only characters involved, the end result closely parallels a relationship and love story. Many songs played by the two, in addition, are romantic in nature. Even the nature of the falling out, regarding the emotional attachment, is carefully played into this story. (However, both are displeased at the end by being called "Fags")

Stan

  • I
    StyleChinaProblem

    Stan and Kyle hugging in "The China Problem"

    n "Cherokee Hair Tampons", Stan, without hesitation, wanted to give Kyle his kidney "even if it hurts a whole lot". After the doctor told him that he wasn't a match and only Cartman was, he spends the rest of the episode trying to get Cartman's kidney. Stan also cried when he was afraid that he was going to lose Kyle (making Kenny angry). At the end of the episode, Kyle did get the kidney he needed and Stan was by side. Kyle says, "Hey, thanks for going through all that to save my life, Stan". Stan replies, "Dude, you're my best friend. I don't want you to die until I do".
  • In "Super Best Friends", Stan tried to get Kyle out of David Blaine's cult, Blaintology. Although Kyle had no desire to leave, Stan tried his best to get him out of the cult throughout the entire episode. He also briefly tried to lead Kyle out of the dorm by the hand. At the end of the episode, Kyle was saved by Stan and the Super Best Friends. The two called each other "Super Best Friends." Notably, Stan only expresses concern for Kyle and not Cartman or Kenny. Cartman even said "Aww that so sweet you guys, do you guys wanna get a room so you two can make out for a while?".
  • In "Quest for Ratings," Stan hugs Kyle twice when celebrating their successful show. Everyone else hugs once.
  • In "The China Probrem," after coming to terms with witnessing the rape of Indiana Jones, Stan bursts into tears and hugs Kyle, exclaiming while doing so "I love you!" to which Kyle responds, "I love you too!"
  • In "Ass Burgers", Stan visits Kyle at his new job at Cartman Burger, drunk, and runs up to him a hug. He admits that he had been a shitty friend and missed him, and wanted Kyle to come with him. Kyle declines, saying that he's with Cartman Burger now, which Stan angrily replies, "C'mon Kyle, this is about you and me, remember?!" Kyle tries to explain that things can't go back to the way they were, and sometimes the only way to keep going is to make a left turn. Stan curses at him, in which he sighs and walks away. He then pleads, "Kyle, I love you!" Kyle walks back, in whence Stan curses him again, causing Kyle to turn around and walk away again. Which Stan repeats, "I love you..."

Kyle

StyleReturnofChef

Kyle holding Stan close in the episode, "The Return of Chef"

  • In "Fun with Veal", Kyle takes care of Stan while he's sick with vaginitis.
  • In "Crack Baby Athletic Association", Kyle tries very hard to justify his doings to Stan throughout the episode, even going as far as appearing in Stan's room at night while the other is sleeping just to talk to him. Stan does not seem interested.

Popularity

Style is one of the most popular pairings in the fandom, particularly with the female fans, alongside Kyman and Creek. There are many fanarts and fanfiction dedicated the pair on many websites, including international ones. Up until Season 11, substantially more Style fanfiction existing than any other pairing in South Park, and there are anecdotal reports of Style shipping as far back as 1998. As the Slash subfandom has become more dominant over the fandom, however, it has found itself increasingly one of several popular pairings.

However, the pairing increasingly has a rivalry and conflict with fans of the Kyman pairing and social media sites such as Tumblr are rife with fans of each pairing criticizing the others' ships for different reasons.

Debates

Dominance

StyleQuintuplets2000

Practicing gymnastics in the episode, "Quintuplets 2000"

A debate that has gone on for a while between fans of the pairing is which of the two is the "dominant" one. One side of the debate places Stan as the "dominant" one in their relationship because of Kyle's compassionate personality, often portraying Stan as more of a "jock" and Kyle as the nerd, leading the assumption that Stan to be the "dominant" one and Kyle the "passive" one. The other possibility is Kyle as the dominant one, due to the perception Kyle is more cynical with the perceived stronger mind, whereas Stan is often portrayed as very sensitive. In some fanfics, the dominance roles overshadow the characters' personas, with the 'dominant' character often being spotlighted in masculine ways and the 'bottom' character being portrayed as feminine, and often assigned traditionally feminine duties, however, this trend is declining as more fans realize gender stereotyping in homosexual relationships is dangerous.

A small minority of fans also suggest the characters alternating or taking turns, however, this is generally not a popular viewpoint.

There are many fanworks of either of the two being the dominant one in the relationship, but the dominant Stan has generally been accepted as more popular with fans than the dominant Kyle. This perception of popularity, however, has resulted in an increase in fanworks portraying a dominant Kyle as a result.

Criticism

Many fans, including some within the slash subfandom, dislike Style, with many of the hints being seen as simply related to their best friendship and have no overt homosexual undertones. There is also criticism that due to its perceived over-popularity, many fanfictions involving it are cliche or fall into similar plotlines. In recent years the pairing has been falling in popularity to Kyman, Creek and K2, but despite all of this, it still remains the most popular pairing in the fandom and is one of the most viewed pages on this very wiki.

External Links


Slash Pairings
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Child Pairings
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