Welcome, welcome to AfterEllen.com’s inaugural Ultimate Femslash Madness Tourney! Last week, we asked you to nominate the best non-canon lesbian couples from your favorite films, TV shows, and books — and boy, did you ever oblige. Between Twitter and the comments section on our call for suggestions post, you weighed in with hundreds and hundreds of subtextual lady lovin’ pairings for our poll. (And to think we wondered whether or not femslash fandom could come up with enough nominations to fill out a 32-couple poll. You showed us!) After reading all of your comments and tweets, we chose the most popular couples, randomly sorted them into four divisions, and parsed them into our championship brackets. Now it’s time for the real voting to begin! But first, a quick note about the selection process: We chose to define “femslash” as a non-canonical romantic relationship between two female characters on the same show. We know, we know: Crack!shipping is fun too, but if we really allowed the Emily Fields/Santana Lopez ship into our competition, would anyone else stand a chance? (We see you, too, Fabrastings fans!) Who knows, maybe we’ll host a crack!ship tournament if this one goes well! We also had to make a couple of executive decisions about whether or not a few of the nominated couples were, indeed, non-canonical. For example, we allowed Xena/Gabrielle and H.G./Myka into our poll because the actresses and shows’ creatives have only deemed them in love in retrospect. (i.e. It wasn’t really clear if they were “official” when they were on-screen together.) And we were all set to include the Pam/Tara ship into the competition, but they made out on the True Blood finale, so they’re not exactly subtext anymore. (We really want this tournament to be a good time for all of our readers, so let’s not get too caught up in the details. We’re here for the fun.) The first round of voting has 16 contests, each with two couples squaring off against one another. You vote on which of the two couples in each bracket you prefer. Voting for this round closes next Friday at midnight. Next week, the 16 winners from Round One will advance to Round Two, and so on until we get to the end and can crown the AfterEllen Ultimate Femslash Madness Champion. On the next page, you can peep our full 32-couple tournament brackets. On the following pages, you’ll find the polls, sorted by division. (Don’t forget to check out the male-male pairings over at AfterElton.) Happy Ultimate Femslash Madness Tourney! And may the odds be ever in your favor!