It’s far too much fun imagining your favorite characters in another environment, especially when you plant them in a different fictional universe. This is one of the reasons why Harry Potter alternate universes (or AUs) are so prevalent; everyone wants to know what the Buffy the Vampire Slayer crew would be like at Hogwarts, what houses they would get sorted into.
But the Pacific Rim AU may have stolen my heart in this regard. You should see some of the gorgeous work that accompanies it.
You can see why Pacific Rim is one of the best universes to dump your favorite characters into; it allows your favorite heroes to still kick some collective butt (in GIANT MECHA SUITS) with the added benefit of drift compatibility. As much as we all want to argue about whether Indiana Jones would be a Gryffindor or a Ravenclaw—I’m going with Ravenclaw on that one—we also want to know which characters would be drift compatible (or not) with each other. Because emotions.
Don’t worry: fandom has you covered with infinite theories, mini-fanfic, and art full of Jaeger pilot uniforms. You know, in case you needed another reason. Observe:
That would be Professor X and Magneto as co-pilots. After First Class, we can hardly be surprised at the idea that these two would be compatible. On the other hand, you have to assume that Charles spends the majority of his time in the drift shouting at Erik to “Calm your mind!” Magneto has a knack for getting stuck in his memories, and so the two of them would have to come up with a different system perhaps, something-something-chess-metaphor, you get the gist.
Avengers AUs for this are abundant because let’s face it—these characters are perfect for it. Partnerships and friendships and unbreakable bonds and romance, the works. It is generally assumed that Steve and Bucky would be drift compatible (as shown above), but then Steve would lose his co-pilot, and perhaps take up with Sam Wilson years later. Which gives an opening for Bucky to return and perhaps find a new co-pilot…
I feel like this should go without saying, but you do not mess with the Winter Widow Jaeger.
But it doesn’t end there. Thor and Loki are frequently paired together for drift compatibility (which could only improve their relationship really, so I’m 5000% behind this), and someone also proposed the idea the Tony Stark wouldn’t be compatible with anyone, so he invented Jarvis for the purpose of having a partner to drift with. Just going to quietly scream over that for a while. Then again, this is probably my favorite Marvel-Rim AU:
Hawkeyes! (From the comics, not the movies, of course.) Clint Barton and Kate Bishop are ready to tear it up in their Jaeger called Pizza Dog, and no, you cannot ask why they named it that.
That would be Bruce Wayne
flirting telling Clark Kent that they’re going to pilot together. (There’s a whole comic of the fight, too.) Though, it’s hard to believe that Bruce would let anyone into his mind that way… maybe Dick Grayson? Oh god, oh god, BATMAN-NIGHTWING JAEGER. Or Bruce drifting with little Robin? All of it. Gimme.
Crowley and Aziraphale of Good Omens. Because you know they are piloting a Jaeger together and somehow convincing Upstairs and Downstairs that it is essential to Earth’s operation. Arrangements and all that.
Danny and Nicholas! The best partners! When they drift they’re literally just watching Bad Boys II the entire time as they beat up kaiju. Danny remembers it frame-for-frame.
This would be Tulio and Miguel from The Road to El Dorado. Obviously drift compatible in every possible way. Their Jaeger is probably bright gold and Miguel somehow figures out how to play his guitar while they pilot. What? It’s soothing.
Bee Palace is the name of the Jaeger piloted by John Watson and Sherlock Holmes because bees. They are very important. Okay?
Yes, I know, you were expecting Kirk and Spock. But Kirk and McCoy makes just as much sense. Actually, you know what would be amazing? A McCoy-Spock Jaeger. Literally everything I have ever wanted in my life. They would call it Opposing Philosophy, or something genius like that.
Okay, you have to read the description that goes along with this Lilo and Stitch AU because it is everything that is good and right in the world:
Lilo and Nani lost both their parents when their Jaeger (Ohana King) fell in the Kaijuu attacks. Due to a severe storm hovering over the area where Ohana King was at the time it had gone off the radar and was never found.
Nani was still a child herself when she had to take up the mantle and play both mother and father to Lilo. When given the opportunity to join the corps and train to become Jaeger pilots, Nani agreed if only to have enough money for food and a consistent roof over their heads. A few years after living on base Marshall Cobra Bubbles got word that a rescue team had news on the whereabouts of the wreckage of Ohana King. Upon finding it, they discovered something else, something worse. A remote team was experimenting on live animals with the remains of the Kaijuu DNA. Most of their creations died off, but one survived, a little french bulldog who had curiously turned blue during the experiments. His tongue and eyes sometimes glow and he is super intelligent.
After some extreme begging and persuasive talking Lilo convinced Cobra Bubbles to allow him to stay and named him Stitch. With the official title of a “Therapy Dog” he was able to live with them and became a sort of mascot for Nani’s Jaeger team.
When Lilo got old enough she enlisted as well, and when Nani’s old partner David injured his leg to the point where he had to retire she became her sister’s co-pilot. David still helps by piloting one of the helicopters that bring the Jaegers out of the base. With it’s new jockey’s Ohana King has never operated so smoothly.
HOW DARE YOU CONCEIVE OF SOMETHING SO BEAUTIFUL.
Of course, then there’s these jerks. Legolas and Gimli, with a friendship so unbreakable that Legolas somehow smuggled the dwarf into Valinor when he went West because there was no way he was going to some fancypants land without his Gimli. At least they’re not as much of a problem as Merry and Pippin:
TREEBEARD THE JAEGER. INTERNET OVER, EVERYONE GO HOME.