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FitzWard gained some popularity in the fandom before the events of Ward's betrayal and H.Y.D.R.A. However, after Season 2, the popularity of this ship decreased because of Ward's attempt to kill Fitz. This attempt also lead to Fitz's brain damage. Many fans refuse to accept FitzWard because of these events.
However, many fans continue to ship FitzWard because Ward does slightly regret attempting to kill Fitz. Before Season 2, this ship was more popular with various fanart and fanfiction produced on this ship. Many depicted their small rivalry and arguments leading to eventual romance. FitzWard is sometimes appreciated because of the relationship between the two actors with Iain in particular as he wanted Brent Dalton's physique and to be him for a day. However, after Season 1, FitzWard's popularity declined with many fans expressing dislike for the pairing.
Most fanfiction with this ship tends to be based before the events of Ward's betrayal or an AU fanfiction. Soulmate AU are also pouplar with this ship.
Behind the Scenes
The development of the relationship in Season 1 was partly inspired by the actors real life friendship:
- “From the very moment [De Caestecker and I] met each other in pilot, it was like, OK, this is good. And then [the crew was] like, 'No, no, no, you're supposed to be into Skye!”
- —Brett Dalton
- “I think that episode where they kind of came together, they did form a friendship but I think it was more about forming an understanding of each other. I think Fitz had the opinion that [Ward] was just a big muscly guy who had no brains, and I think Ward thought of me that I was just very smart but I didn't have any courage to go out and do stuff. We had to kind of prove to each other that we had that other side to ourselves -- and they had to prove that to themselves.”
- —Iain de Caestecker on "The Hub" episode
- An appreciation week for FitzWard was held between August 9, 2015 and August 15, 2015.