Welcome heroes! Today’s post is a spotlight on characters who make you look good, also known as sidekicks! Links of note will be listed under Further Reading.
Who is your favourite sidekick?
I can’t summon an all-time favorite sidekick, so I’ll offer up a genre of sidekicks. My favorite class of sidekicks is support class sidekicks. They smooth the way for the hero as best they can. Often their efforts are largely unnoticed, but they’re ok with it. Since there’s fantasy metal music in the background, I’ll use a band as my all-encompassing example.
In a typical rock/metal band, there’s a lead singer, lead guitar, bass, and a drummer. The general public recognizes the guitarist and singer. They’re the perceived heroes since they’re front line. The singer uses words, and the guitarist leads the melody. These appeal to listeners on an emotional level.
Bass and drum are set more towards the back. They’re responsible for keeping the rhythm and supporting the melody with harmonic low notes, respectively. Low notes and the beat resonate on a primal level. Our bodies are more adept at picking out changes in rhythm at low frequencies versus high frequencies. If their foundation falls apart, the whole song falls apart. Ergo, bass and drums are my favorite sidekicks, from one musician to another. Thanks for coming to my TEDx talk.
Who is your favourite minor character or NPC (non-played character)?
I remember my rival in Pokémon Gold most vividly, mostly because I went out of my way to bestow upon them the douchiest of names. I was a very mature 12-year-old, I swear. In all honesty I took great delight in crushing this trainer’s dreams to dust. Oh, you went out of your way to steal the opposite of my first-choice pocket monster? Excuse me while I steamroll you with my ridiculously overpowered team anyway.
Which minor character do you wish had more ‘screen’ time?
Yumyan Hammerpaw! I wrapped up binging Kipo and the Age of the Wonderbeasts and to the shock and surprise of nobody he’s my favorite. He’s a cat, he wears plaid, and did I mention he’s a big floofy cat?
What is your favourite scene with a minor character?
One of my favorite arcs of FoxTrot is the Camp Bohrmore summer camp arc. I liked Hawkins best; he was an innocuous background character that also incidentally hacked the CIA. No big deal.
What has been your favourite cameo role?
Wreck-It Ralph is an endless stream of cameos that I enjoyed. The best part is that they were all licensed cameos instead of knockoffs meant to dodge copyrights. Out of all the cameos, my favorite was Zangief, though I must confess I’ve never played any of the Street Fighter games.
“You are bad guy but that doesn’t mean you bad, guy.”
If you could have someone play a cameo role in anything what would it be?
I want an updated reboot of IT Crowd. I would love to see Chris O’Dowd and Richard Ayoade come back and reprise their roles as Roy and Moss training up the next generation of sysadmins.
Superior time perception for low musical pitch Michael J. Hove, Céline Marie, Ian C. Bruce, Laurel J. Trainor Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Jul 2014, 111 (28) 10383-10388; DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1402039111