A series on characters
Hello my little devils, welcome back. I’d like to ask a question: what are we looking for when we want great characters? Someone that mirrors our own struggles, and inspires us when they overcome? Or larger than life giants who achieve Herculean feats, providing us with escapism and wonder?
I ask this because I have my own very long series of characters, developed for and from RPG’s, fighting games, or just my imagination running into the night, each time creating a new narrative that, as I have matured, I have begun to notice is created to answer an existential question or let me be outside of my own mountainous insecurities and anxieties- and giving me a new way to face them. From understanding the nature of betrayal to the theme of man vs technology, I invite you to delve into my own inner workings, starting with the personification of the darkest side of my own sense of humor, Domino Calypsy.
Starting off as a concept for a team of five very dark, very unpleasant people in a particularly dark, unpleasant time in my life, I somehow found the crux of balance back to being myself in this wonderfully fun madman who has been described as “a male Harley Quinn.” The idea for his position in the team (lead by an evil queen, who may have been a stand-in for difficulties I was having with my mother) was to be in disguse as a jester, but is in fact a master spy. Obviously all the trappings of being a spy are available to a jester- limber form, great acrobatic skills, able to blend into the surroundings of his natural environment, and carrying a variety of tools for “entertainment.” But as I started to dig deeper, I began to see where a little insanity would spice him up. Starting with the idea fire-blowers need to ingest alcohol for their trick, it began to amuse me further and further that somehow in history we were trusting a drunk person with an open flame- and the means to spread it faster. The very idea of such an unsafe practice began to spiral outward, and my sense of humor started filling in so many blanks until I had created someone who was two sides of the same coin, innocent and yet unhinged, brilliant in terms of tactics and sneaking around, but chaotic in his very nature. Someone who is able to employ “accidents happen” as an excuse for any death around him, and equally prepared to brighten a child’s day. It began to disturb me, and I began to like it- the fascinating dichotomy of a gentle soul housed in a madman’s mind.
Luckily I was able to pull through and put that darkest part of myself behind me, but Domino still resides somewhere, always ready to come out and play, or just find a little mischeif. Even today, he rears his head in my mind, like when I saw a sign for an attraction and thought “sounds like a tourist trap,” Domino was there to answer by asking “Oh! Do you get to beat them?!”
Silly, naughty Domino. The nuances of context will never hold you back, will they?