Nico (vilakins) wrote,

Thoughts on the characters I like

On selenak's journal, there's an interesting discussion about gender: why there are more men than women on bulletin boards, and more women than men on LJ and in fandom RPGs, and whether gender is a factor in the characters one likes. I didn't get into the LJ/BB discussion (I think there are greater differences between individuals than the sexes) but some very perceptive comments from alara_r made me think about the characters I go for.

Like alara_r, I like to have female characters in my original fiction (most of which is still in my head). Actually, I like to cast characters gender-blind as I do with OCs in fanfic, but the main character, from whose POV the story unfolds, is almost always a female and usually an outsider, often a trickster or in a position of military command (e.g. a general).

As for the characters I like in my fandoms, up till now I thought I'd always gone for aliens (Spock, Data, the holograhic Doctor, Seven, Garak, G'Kar, Londo, Vir) but along came Vila three years ago and bowled me over. I didn't think he fit the pattern because he's so very human. However alara_r's remarks about preferring certain archetypes most of which are cast as males, opened my eyes. It's not that they're aliens, it's that they're all outsiders, including Vila. Vila and Garak are also tricksters, another archetype I'm attracted to. I also like childlike, humorous, and often damaged characters like Vir, Vila, Wash, and Stark.

Another type I go for is the geek, and geeks are usually cast as male. Kaylee and Willow are pleasant surprises and I like them both a lot, but in the case of Buffy (I'm still in S1) Giles is my favourite. alara_r described him as a the mentor type, but I actually see him as much more a geek, but in a very non-tech way; he's a scholar--unlike Avon. Avon has a lot of geek attributes but somehow for me, his self-confidence (whether apparent or real), sarcasm (wonderful though it is) and affinity with hand-held ordinance outweigh that. He does geeky things on occasion, but I'm not sure he's really a geek.

I also like some strong and independent characters like Picard and Janeway, I think because they're also very intelligent and somewhat isolated by the chain of command (hmm, the geek and outsider again).

Tags: fandom, sf
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