Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Quirks

Lately I've been thinking a lot about characterization.  To me, this is the most important part of the story, and the part that is the hardest for me.  If I don't like the main character, I'm not going to spend 300+ pages listening to her story.  Characters have to pop off the page, be likable, but also have some problem that they have to fix.  A lot goes in to making good, three dimensional characters.  And for me, something that gives that character an extra spark is quirk.

I've been thinking about secondary characters as well as main characters, and there are some really good quirks out there that make all the difference.  If that person didn't have the quirk, they would fall flat.  And some quirks push the character over the top to brilliance.

Some of my favorite quirks are:

-Glee's Sam Evans' impersonations.  Sam is kind of a throw-away character on Glee.  You probably don't even know who he is.  (He's also known as Trouty Mouth and played by Chord Overstreet).  But every time he does one of his impersonations on the show, I smile.  It makes me like him a little bit more.

-Paranormalcy's Evie's Pink Taser.  Evie has a quirky voice already, but what puts it over the top is her pink rhinestone taser that she uses to tase vampires.  It's the dichotomy of girlie girl and fierce soldier that gets me.

-Ocean Eleven's Rusty Ryan is always eating.  Brad Pitt's character is eating in almost every scene.  It's just kind of funny to see him always holding some new food, and gives his character just a little bit more depth.

-Looking For Alaska's Miles' love for reading biographies of famous writers, but not their famous words.  Really, John Green puts a lot of quirkyness into all his characters, which is why I think his characters work so well on so many levels.  But it was reading about Miles that made me first realize why I loved it.  The quirk is so detailed that it makes Miles so real as a person.  You can't help loving the fact that he loves it, because it's so specific that you truly feel that it couldn't have been made-up.  His character obviously pulls on my heart.

What makes a good quirk?  What are some of your favorite character quirks?

2 comments:

  1. John Green is a MASTER of characterization. He always writes the most relatable, real characters! I loved the main character in An Abundance of Katherines and his obsession with anagrams!! And as for quirks, my all time favorite is ALSO from Glee (but has been lacking MAJORLY the last few seasons) but mine is Artie. The episode where he found out Tina didn't really stutter literally broke my heart for him. I wish they'd bring up front and center more.

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    1. Isn't John Green just the best?? The anagrams obsession is a good one too! And we haven't seen a lot of Artie in a while (but tonight is Sectionals so maybe we'll be surprised!)

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