Look! It's finally done! This all started out as a picspam idea back in January, after iKiss took my love for Carly/Sam from casual shipping to OTP levels. Six months, nearly 10,000 words, and more than two hundred screencaps later, it's turned into an outright manifesto, counting down the top ten reasons why Carly and Sam are very much in love and clearly meant for each other.
All screencaps are my own, so feel free to use them for anything you'd like. Huge thanks go out to ifanciful for all the fantastic discussions that inspired so many things in here, and for creating this comm and giving a manifesto like this a home, and to jannika for the 3am conversations about the girls and their love, for the support and encouragement through everything that went into making this, for the day in January that started with a text message about the expression on Sam's face and ended with a new OTP, and just for everything, always. ♥
So, without further ado, I present to you (so huge it's coming in two parts!)…
Reason #10: Because it's all about the body language.
It's nothing for female best friends to touch a little. It's not unheard of for female best friends to be comfortable being in each other's space every now and then. It's not uncommon for female best friends to hug in moments that call for a little hugging. So it only stands to reason that Carly and Sam might show their comfort level with each other through their body language. But it's all just a friend thing… right? Let's take a look at some examples.
All female best friends scoot as close to each other as possible, making sure they're practically sitting on top of each other whenever they're together. But it's not like they had any choice in the matter, right? I mean, there was no room to spare on the couch or at the table at the Groovy Smoothie. There was no room between the girls and Freddie either, right? Psh, hardly a convincing argument to be made there.
All female best friends crowd each other's personal space, whether they're on camera or just lounging around watching television together. So there's nothing to take note of here, at all.
All female best friends find excuses to wrap their arms around each other, whether they're joking around with their friends or striking an adorable post. After all, it's not like any of that touching means anything, because they're best friends, and that's just what best friends do. They just touch each other. A lot.
All female best friends lay on top of each other. This has nothing to do with wanting to feel the other one near them while they're sleeping. It just shows that they're comfortable enough with each other to share that space awake or asleep, right? Besides, they were so crammed for space on that couch, they couldn't possibly have spread out any more.
All female best friends share stolen glances with each other all the time. It has nothing to do at all with sneaking longing looks or sharing glances that seem to hide secrets between them. It's just that whole "best friends who know each other so well they know what the other's thinking without exchanging a word" thing. That's totally normal teen girl behavior.
All female best friends touch each other affectionately from time to time. Whether it's finger-holding while cuddled up on the couch together or a reassuring hand resting on the other's shoulder while they sleep together, it's absolutely nothing out of the ordinary. Moving right along.
And all female best friends make sure to stand slightly behind each other when they're in conversations together. It has nothing to do with possessive body language, nothing to do with "she's mine" protectiveness. It's just a space issue, right?
See? There's absolutely nothing abnormal about Carly and Sam's body language. Because after all, it's just a best friend thing, and that's all there is to say about that.
Reason #9: Because of all the little moments where they just go off into their own world together.
Whether it's just a little look exchanged between the two of them here and there or a conversation where they seem to forget that anyone else is in the room, Carly and Sam have an amazing tendency to just slip into their own little world whenever they're together. One of the things that makes their relationship so amazing is the comfort level between the two of them, the easy banter that they fall into whenever it's just the two of them. It's doesn't matter where they are or who's around – they're just them, and watching the girls be them is an amazing thing.
Carly: I should have believed you.
Sam: Yeah, no chiz.
Carly: Are you mad at me?
Sam: Kinda – no.
Carly: Good. So – after school, how about I take you to the mall and buy you a new cell phone.
Sam: Eh, you don't need to – I stole Missy's.
Carly: You're the best.
Sam: Yeah, don't you forget it.
Carly: Forget what?
Sam: Watch it, Shay…
Everything about this scene just makes me smile endlessly. It's just so them. It's in the way that Sam can't stay mad at Carly for more than a second, the way that she can't even pretend to stay mad at Carly to prove a point, because suddenly that point doesn't seem so important now that everything is back the way it should be. It's in the way that Carly's worried expression just changes into a warm and contented grin the moment she and Sam are back to being best friends, the moment that things are back to normal again. It's in the way that Carly offers to do something nice for Sam, to buy her things, to take care of her and fix what she's messed up. It's in the way that Carly doesn't mind it if Sam's done something she knows she probably shouldn't have, because that's how Sam is and she loves Sam just the way she is. It's in their banter back and forth at the end of the scene, the way Carly calls Sam "the best" and Sam calls Carly by her last name and they just walk off together, completely oblivious to the fact that there's anyone else around beyond the two of them. And it's in everything that could never be pointed out and explained, in just that indescribable quality that makes them them and makes that so amazing to watch. ♥
Reason #8: Because they flirt and act completely inappropriately. On camera. For all the internet to see.
The way Carly and Sam go off into their own world together when it's just the two of them is amazing, but maybe even more amazing is the way that they act for the whole world to see. And I'm not talking about the world of Ridgeway or the Groovy Smoothie – no, our girls are even more obvious than that. I'm talking about the completely shameless and inappropriate flirting they do on camera together, broadcast weekly for the world to see on iCarly.com.
This, I believe, was the first moment where my eyebrows really started to raise over Carly and Sam's more-than-friendly behavior. A lot of first season moments between the girls might be able to be explained away as best friend moments (extremely, unusually close best friend moments…) by the highly skeptical, but even assuming the most innocent of motivations here, there's just absolutely nothing appropriate and innocent about this clip at all. Just look at that first picture. There's virtually no room for Carly to have been hiding in the bathtub, and only one place – one very, very inappropriate place – that she could have been hiding. And the look on her face when she pops up? The way she raises her eyebrows and smirks when she says "neigh"? I'm pretty sure my jaw was on the floor the first time I saw this. And keep in mind that this is what they have no problem with letting the whole internet see.
Then we kick off season two with this iCarly segment…
Carly: And now, watch what happens when we touch our tongues to each end of this crystal rod.
Sam: Isn't this cool?
Carly and Sam: Ta da!
…I really think this one speaks for itself. Wow. Really, there isn't a bit of
Carly: Can I pet your squirrel?
Sam: Uh, little lady, this here's no squirrel. This here's a mustache.
Carly: Does he like nuts?
Carly: Your squirrel. Is he nutty for nuts?
Sam: Girl, there's nary a squirrel upon my face. Once again – this is a mustache.
Carly: What's his name?
Sam: Who's name?
Carly: Your squirrel's. Is it a boy squirrel or a girl squirrel?
Sam: Well, you must be an idiot. For there is not, nor has there ever been, a squirrel upon my lip.
They're supposed to be acting here, yes, but really – Carly is a very, very convincing actress. Because just look at those caps and tell me that it doesn't look like she's blatantly flirting with Sam there. That's just not the kind of look you give your best friend. You don't. But it's all for the sake of acting, right? It's a good thing that Carly is such a talented actress, then, I suppose, because otherwise we would've thought it was a shameless attempt to seduce her best friend, and on camera for the whole world to see, at that. It's a good thing that we know that it was just written into the script that the idiot farm girl was trying to seduce the cowboy with the mustache, right? I mean, that was a huge, vital part of the plotline… wasn't it? *nods* I couldn't think of any other reason Carly would be flirting with Sam…
Reason #7: Because they fall to pieces with jealousy when anyone comes between them.
Sam: So… you guys know each other?
Carly: Sam, this is Missy. We were, like, best friends when our dads were stationed together at Seal Beach.
Sam:. …Cool, how long ago?
Carly: Oh, wow, like, seven years?
Carly: So what are you doing here?
Missy: My dad got transferred here!
Carly: To Seattle?
Missy: Yeah! I’m going to be going to Ridgeway with you! (they both scream)
Sam: …You guys aren't going to do that every day, right?
As much as she tries to hide her feelings and keep cool, the look on Sam's face throughout this scene says everything. Carly so much as touches another girl, so much as acts excited to see another girl, and Sam immediately goes on the defensive. Her face is just brimming with jealousy, and I can hardly recall anytime elsewhere in canon where she's looked so small and insecure and it hasn't had something to do with the fear of losing Carly. Sam just can't handle the idea of Carly being close with Missy, at all.
Carly: Can I ask you something?
Carly: Are you jealous of Missy?
Sam: Not even a little.
Carly: Then will you just give her a chance?
Sam: I gave her a chance, and she gave me a Persian chocolate stomach bomb!
This whole scene is just incredible. Even Carly sees how having Missy around is just making Sam lose it completely. Sam just can't deal with Carly having anyone else in her world that could be as important to her as she is. For Carly, it's just a matter of seeing an old friend – there isn't anyone who could replace Sam, of course, but she just wants her
Missy: Carly was my best friend first, and I'm taking her back.
Sam: I knew it. Carly's too nice and good to see the evil in people, but luckily, I'm not too nice and good. And you better know your blood type, because you're going to need some when I'm done with you.
Missy: I know you can beat me up, Sam. But you won't.
Sam: What makes you –
Missy: If you do anything bad to me, Carly's going to think you started it. I mean, look at what's happened this week. You were right about everything you accused me of, and Carly still didn't believe you. And anyway – you really think Carly's going to like you after you beat up her best friend?
Sam: I'm her best friend.
Missy: Yeah, try were.
Look at this, you guys. Look at this. Sam cannot deal with any of this. She's just seething with jealousy.
Missy: Aw, don't be sad, Sam. Now you can be Carly's best friend, because I don't need to get rid of you anymore.
Missy: Uh, look! I won the School at Sea thing!
Carly: You were trying to get rid of Sam!
Missy: But – we were best friends first, and you can't have two best friends.
Carly: Okay, you're a –
Sam: Watch out.
Carly: And I don't have two best friends. I just have one. One awesome, cool, meat-loving best friend.
Sam: Momma does love the meat.
Missy: Whatever. You two enjoy each other. I'm going on a cruise!
This entire exchange is just incredible in so many ways I couldn't even begin to list them here. Up to this point, this has all been about keeping the peace for Carly – she's been happy to catch up with Missy, and has been doing her best to help her
The dynamic between the two of them here in this scene is just incredible. The fact that mild-tempered Carly is so angry that she almost says who-knows-what right in the middle of Ridgeway's hallways? The fact that Sam knows her so well that she knows what she's about to say and reminds her to watch her language? The look that Carly gives Sam when she tells Missy that Sam is her best friend? The knowing smirk of victory on Sam's face? It's all just amazing. And, ahem – you two enjoy each other? Seems even Missy is onto our girls and their overly jealous, overprotective, and overwhelmingly more-than-friendly ways.
Reason #6: Because they have this habit of falling for other people who just so happen to be exactly like their best friend.
Because iCarly is on Nickelodeon, and girl-girl romance and tweendom don't quite go hand in hand yet, Carly and Sam both have a handful of
First, let's look at Exhibit A: Jake, Carly's season one crush from iLike Jake.
ifanciful has pointed out the similarities in looks between Jake and Sam, and really, the more that you look at the two of them side by side, the more and more striking those similarities become. It's in the eyes, in the smiles, in the shape of their faces and in the types of expressions they make. The similarities are undeniable – if Sam were a guy, she would look exactly like Jake. And so naturally, Carly falls for him right away.
Exhibit B: Griffin, Carly's boyfriend from iDate a Bad Boy. Does he… remind you of anyone?
Officer: Got your motorcycle back.
Spencer: No way! Who took it?
Officer: I think this guy can answer that question.
Spencer: Do you know who took it?
Officer: He took it! We found him in the garage. On your bike.
Griffin: I was bringing it back! I didn't steal it. I took it for a little joyride.
Spencer: Well, what about my joy?
Carly: Yeah! Look what you made him do to my laundry! I'm gonna have to refold most of that!
Spencer: And how did you get my motorcycle started? Did you hotwire it?
Griffin: I didn't have to. You left these in the ignition.
Spencer: You okay, monkey?
Griffin: I didn't mess with your monkey.
Let's see. Juvenile delinquent? Check. Enjoys stealing things and getting in trouble? Check. And everything about the whole exchange about Spencer's keys and his monkey certainly reminds me of another, blonder juvenile delinquent in the Schneiderverse. Not that I'm naming names or anything *coughSamcough*.
Griffin: So is it done?
Spencer: No. You see, a sculpture should have character. We need to give it character.
Griffin: And how do we do that?
Spencer: With our character sledgehammers.
Enjoys hanging out with Spencer? Check. Enjoys destroying things? Check.
Carly: What's that hole?
Griffin: I got mad at my friend Kato and punched the wall.
Carly: Ooh, you're so bad.
Has anger issues? Check. Hmm… is this starting to sound like anyone else that we all know? Anyone, you know, who happens to be Carly's best friend?
Carly: See? It does bother you.
Freddie: No, I just don't think Griffin seems like your type.
Sam: He's got a point. I never would've pictured you with a guy like him.
Carly: Me either, but there's just something kind of exciting and cool about a bad boy.
Sam: Uh, trust me, I get it.
Carly: Guess what he has?
Sam: Ooh! Scars are hot.
Carly: I know! Some are from motorcycle crashes, and some are from fights he's been in. I just love it!
But it's not just the similarities, either – it's the fact that Carly blatantly admits that all of those qualities are the reason she's attracted to Griffin. Which, you know, is an irrelevant point, because there's no one else in the Schneiderverse who shares any of those qualities. No one else who Carly might be transferring her feelings for onto Griffin. Nope.
Sam: Okay, kid, what's the prob?
Sam: Come on, something's bugging you. What is it? Wait – something happened behind you and Griffin last night. Something bad. What was it?
See Sam's face in that second cap? See her reaction when she thinks that Carly and Griffin might be having relationship issues? You know, devastated isn't quite the word I'm looking for here. Because that's totally an appropriate reaction if you suspect your best friend's relationship isn't going as swimmingly as she had hoped.
Carly: Nothing! We went to see a movie, and then back to his place.
Sam: Aha, here we go! Deets?
Carly: We just talked and stuff.
Sam: Stuff like lip-to-lip contact?
Carly: Some kissing occurred.
Sam: All right! Baby got some sugar!
That's right. All straight female best friends call each other "baby." *nods* And I think the first cap there says it all, really, about the girls' relationships with other people – no matter who they might be dating, no matter what the relationship might be, it's always them, right their over each other's shoulder, right in the background and always, always there.
Carly: And then he – he showed me his – collection.
Sam: All right, his collection! …I don't know what that means.
Carly: You want some juice?
Sam: No! Collection of what?
Carly: Oh, you know… just… his… Pee Wee Babies?
Sam: Griffin collects Pee Wee Babies?
Sam: Well, does he put firecrackers in them and blow them up?
Sam: Well, what does he do with them?
Carly: He looks at them, and talks to them, and sometimes talks for them!
Sam: Are you sure we're not talking about Freddie here?
Carly: Yes, I'm sure! My bad boy collects Pee Wee Babies! It's awful, isn't it?
Carly: I know!
The minute that Griffin's bad boy allure is destroyed, Carly loses her interest in him, proving that it wasn't ever about Griffin at all. It was about what he represented, about all of the characteristics she thought were a part of his personality – all of which just might happen to be a part of Sam's personality too. Not that there's any connection to be made there whatsoever, of course. Not at all.
Speaking of hanging out with Spencer… Exhibit C: Spam.
I have no problem whatsoever admitting that I can see the Spam moments. In fact, I'd go so far as to say that it's completely canon that Sam likes to think she has a little bit of a crush on Spencer. Because really – it's so convenient to have a crush on your best friend's older brother, isn't it? It's so convenient to be able to just blame the things you might see in Carly too on the fact that they're shared Shay traits. It's so convenient to be able to spend even more time hanging around your best friend's loft, without having to look at all at any of the reasons why you might want to have yet another way to be close to her.
It's so convenient to be able to crush on people who share the same qualities you love in your best friend – because then you don't have to look at the fact that you happen to be very much in love with your very female best friend. It all works out nicely, doesn't it, girls?
Go on to Part Two…