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Why 2b9s is a Bad Ship: Debunking the Myth of an Anti-Ship Relationship

In the vast landscape of fandoms, certain pairings spark heated debates and passionate defenses. Among these, the relationship between 2b and 9s from the popular video game Nier: Automata often finds itself at the center of intense discussion. Advocates argue for the depth of their connection, while detractors insist that 2b9s is a bad ship anti-ship. In this article, we’ll delve into the reasons why this pairing might not be as ideal as some fans believe.

Lack of Mutuality:

One of the fundamental flaws of the 2b9s ship is its lack of mutuality. Throughout the game, 2b maintains a stoic demeanor, burdened by her duty to protect 9s. Meanwhile, 9s develops a deep attachment to 2b, often to the point of obsession.

This power dynamic is inherently unequal and unhealthy, leading to an imbalanced relationship where 2b’s feelings are largely unexplored. Indeed, 2b9s is a bad ship anti-ship precisely because it fails to establish a foundation of mutual respect and understanding.

Professionalism vs. Romance:

Another factor contributing to the shortcomings of the 2b9s ship is the nature of 2b and 9s’s relationship within the game. As YoRHa androids, their primary focus is on fulfilling their missions rather than pursuing romantic entanglements.

While their interactions are undeniably complex and emotionally charged, they are rooted in duty rather than genuine romantic affection. Therefore, attempting to shoehorn romance into their dynamic feels forced and undermines the integrity of their characters. 2b9s is a bad ship anti-ship because it disregards the narrative context in favor of wishful thinking.

Unresolved Trauma:

Throughout Nier: Automata, both 2b and 9s grapple with profound trauma stemming from their experiences in the war against the machines. 2b is burdened by the knowledge of her true identity and the repeated loss of 9s due to his inevitable resets. Meanwhile, 9s struggles with feelings of abandonment and betrayal as he uncovers the truth about YoRHa.

These deep-seated issues serve as barriers to any genuine romantic connection between them. Rather than addressing and resolving these traumas, proponents of the 2b9s ship often overlook them in favor of romantic idealism. However, the reality is that their relationship is fraught with unresolved emotional baggage, making 2b9s a bad ship anti-ship.

Anti-Ship Relationship

Platonic Bonds vs. Romantic Fantasies:

It’s essential to recognize that not all meaningful relationships need to be romantic in nature. The bond between 2b and 9s is undoubtedly profound, characterized by loyalty, sacrifice, and companionship. However, this bond is more akin to a deep platonic connection forged through shared experiences and mutual reliance.

By insisting on romanticizing their relationship, fans risk diminishing the significance of their platonic bond and imposing unnecessary romantic expectations on characters who were never intended to fulfill them. In this light, it becomes clear that 2b9s is a bad ship anti-ship, as it detracts from the value of their platonic relationship.

Fundamental Differences:

Beyond their professional duties as YoRHa androids, 2b and 9s possess fundamentally different personalities and outlooks on life. 2b is characterized by her stoicism and emotional reserve, a product of her experiences on the battlefield and the weight of her responsibilities. In contrast, 9s is more expressive and emotionally vulnerable, prone to bouts of anger and despair as he grapples with the truth of their existence.

While these differences can create compelling dynamics in their interactions, they also highlight the challenges of sustaining a romantic relationship. Their disparate approaches to coping with trauma and adversity suggest that their personalities may not naturally complement each other in a romantic context, further underscoring why 2b9s is a bad ship anti-ship.

Narrative Intent:

When analyzing the potential for romantic relationships within a narrative, it’s crucial to consider the author’s intent and thematic resonance. In the case of Nier: Automata, the overarching themes revolve around existentialism, the nature of humanity, and the cycle of violence. While relationships play a significant role in the story, they are often portrayed through the lens of tragedy and loss rather than conventional romance.

The narrative prioritizes exploring the complexities of individual identity and the consequences of war, rather than fulfilling romantic fantasies. As such, attempting to force a romantic connection between 2b and 9s overlooks the thematic nuances and narrative intent of the game, reinforcing the notion that 2b9s is a bad ship anti-ship.

Power Imbalance and Dependency:

A deeper examination of the power dynamics between 2b and 9s reveals inherent imbalances that further complicate the notion of a romantic relationship. Throughout the game, 2b holds authority over 9s as his assigned combat partner and superior officer. This dynamic creates a dependency where 9s relies on 2b for guidance, protection, and emotional support. 

However, true intimacy cannot thrive in an environment where one party holds significant power over the other. The unequal distribution of power perpetuates a dynamic where 9s’s feelings for 2b may stem more from a sense of dependency and admiration for her strength rather than genuine romantic affection. Thus, the power imbalance inherent in their relationship adds another layer of complexity to why 2b9s is a bad ship anti-ship.

Evolution of Character Relationships:

As the story of Nier: Automata unfolds, the dynamics between characters evolve in response to their experiences and revelations. While 2b and 9s share a deep bond forged through adversity, their relationship undergoes significant shifts as they confront the truth about YoRHa and the cycle of violence perpetuated by humanity and machines. 

These revelations challenge their preconceptions and force them to reassess their priorities and allegiances. In light of these developments, romanticizing their relationship overlooks the potential for growth and change in their interactions.

Evolution of Character Relationships:

By fixating on a static interpretation of their relationship, proponents of the 2b9s ship fail to acknowledge the complexity and fluidity of character dynamics within the narrative. Thus, considering the evolving nature of their relationship further reinforces the argument that 2b9s is a bad ship anti-ship.

Emotional Baggage and Trust Issues:

Delving deeper into the psyche of 2b and 9s unveils layers of emotional baggage and trust issues that serve as significant barriers to a healthy romantic relationship. 2b’s role as a Executioner model android, tasked with repeatedly killing 9s to prevent him from discovering the truth, leaves her burdened with guilt and remorse.

This guilt is compounded by the knowledge that she is not the first 2b model to be assigned to 9s, adding a layer of existential dread to their relationship.

Similarly, 9s grapples with feelings of betrayal and abandonment upon discovering the truth about YoRHa’s true purpose and the manipulation of androids like himself. These unresolved emotions create a rift between them, making it difficult to bridge the gap between companionship and romantic love.

The weight of their shared trauma hangs heavily over their interactions, overshadowing any potential for genuine intimacy and connection. Thus, the presence of emotional baggage and trust issues further emphasizes why 2b9s is a bad ship anti-ship.

Sacrifice and Selflessness:

Throughout Nier: Automata, both 2b and 9s demonstrate acts of sacrifice and selflessness in service of their mission and each other. 2b repeatedly puts her own life on the line to protect 9s, even if it means bearing the burden of his inevitable resets.

Meanwhile, 9s risks life and limb to uncover the truth about YoRHa and seek justice for the atrocities committed against androids. These acts of sacrifice and selflessness underscore the depth of their bond as comrades and allies. However, romanticizing their relationship overlooks the inherent beauty of their platonic connection, which is built on mutual respect, loyalty, and shared experiences.

By prioritizing romantic fantasies over the genuine emotional resonance of their bond, proponents of the 2b9s ship diminish the significance of their sacrifices and the purity of their connection. Therefore, recognizing the value of their platonic bond highlights why 2b9s is a bad ship anti-ship.

Diverging Paths:

As the narrative of Nier: Automata unfolds, 2b and 9s find themselves on diverging paths, driven by their individual quests for truth and redemption. While their journeys intersect at various points, they ultimately pursue separate objectives that lead them down different trajectories.

2b’s duty as an Executioner model android binds her to her mission to protect humanity, even as she grapples with the truth of YoRHa’s origins. In contrast, 9s’s pursuit of vengeance against the machines and the truth about YoRHa’s deception consumes him, driving a wedge between him and 2b.

These diverging paths highlight the complexities of their relationship and the challenges of maintaining a romantic connection amidst conflicting priorities and allegiances. By acknowledging the divergent paths they tread, it becomes evident that 2b9s is a bad ship anti-ship, as it disregards the narrative trajectory and thematic resonance of their individual journeys.


In conclusion, while the 2b9s ship may have its fervent supporters within the Nier: Automata fandom, it’s essential to critically examine the dynamics of this relationship. From its lack of mutuality to the unresolved trauma that plagues both characters, there are numerous reasons why 2b9s is a bad ship anti-ship.

Rather than fixating on romantic fantasies, fans should appreciate the depth of 2b and 9s’s bond as companions and comrades-in-arms. By doing so, they can honor the integrity of the characters and the narrative context in which they exist, rather than imposing their own romantic ideals onto them.

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