Enough with the Love Triangles

Love triangles have permeated Young Adult fiction since the turn of the century.  I would argue it has gone beyond clichéd and it expected to be in Young Adult material whether we want it or not.

There is no denying that there isn’t anything inherently wrong with a love triangle subplot.  It can be done well, but the problem is it is nearly impossible to have a love triangle and not have something the audience has seen before repeatedly.

As stated before, this trope is beyond clichéd, it is something repeated far more than the “Dark Lord” or “chosen one” themes and anymore feels like a cheep way to add an extra layer of drama, despite the fact that it’s something we’ve all seen.

Just because a story features young adults doesn’t mean the characters need to pine over one another.  I would like to see authors and writers of TV series and films to come up with other ways to create tension or drama.

The thing is I’m certainly not the first one to point out this problem, many people decry the love triangle plot-device, yet it keeps popping up.  To be frank it feels like laziness on the writers’ part.  When it comes to this idea, we’ve been there done that so many times, but the problem is it still succeeds at conjuring up an emotional reaction.  We become invested in characters and root for one team to win the relationship or the other.

At this point love triangles detract from a story rather than add to it.  It’s time us writers find another way to handle relationships.  What do you think about love triangles?  Are you sick of them too or do you think they need to stick around?

4 thoughts on “Enough with the Love Triangles

Add yours

  1. When I began writing my first novel (intended for a young adult readership), I didn’t want to have to mess with either sex scenes, or love triangles. So I made my main character part of a neuter working-class in a dystopian society. Done.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Could not agree more. I love The Hunger Games but could never figure out why Katniss felt torn between Peeta and a piece of talking plywood.

    You’re right that they fill in drama but I would go a step further and say sometimes they detract from it. The Earth’s Children series by Jean M Auel practically wasted an entire book (book 3: The Mammoth Hunters) on a love triangle.


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