In fandom (or even in other forms of writing), we all whump. Some may whump characters just a tad, so slightly that it's barely whumping. Others whump so hard you start to wonder. There is emotional whumping, physical whumping, and mentally whumping. There's whumping that covers a variety of senses and ideas.
But who do you whump? Do you find it's usually your favorite character? Is it your least favorite character? Is it the one you're attracted to most or the one that you identify with most? Or maybe it's based on a personality type?
Personally, I tend to whump the characters I like the most. Sometimes they are the character I identify with and sometimes they are the ones I'm attracted to. It also depends on the circumstance. One scenario might work better for one character over another. And I don't like to overwhump to the point it loses its punch. But in the end, it usally boils down to my fave character.
Macgyver: Mac, of course ;)
The X-Files: Scully
Stargate SG-1: Daniel, though Jack is creeping up there. Sometimes Sam.
Star Wars: Luke Skywalker
Farscape: John Crichton
Harry Potter: Ron
Pirates of the Caribbean: Will
In my original fiction, it's usually the main character.
The list could go on and on...
So, why would I want to hurt my favorite? It's a legitmate question and one I think about more and more now that I am writing stories for publication. If it's just to satisfy some kink, that's all fine and good, but for me it has to serve a purpose. I consider whumping a character, original fic or fanfic, a way to explore his/her strengths and weaknesses. If the character is alone, the whumping can be a testament to his stamina and his inner strength. If the character is with someone, we can witness her strength along with those who support her, or with those that want to undermine her. In the end, we the audience or the writer feel the triumph the character feels for overcoming adversity or perhaps the despair of failure.
That is why I like to whump. Your reasons may different. But I would love to hear them :)
(I'll reply to comments soon.)