Hey everyone, I’m Kakuzan. I have many names (one is PimpDaddyMac), but I will not reveal them now as to spare your feeble minds.
Enough about me though. I am starting this little series where I discuss things I feel like speaking about. Today, we will be talking about the tendency of either the audience or the artist of forgetting about certain traits in a character.
Let us use Spider-Man for an example. There are two lessons I took away from Spider-Man, the first was that you did not have to be born in a position of greatness, with everyone being capable of rising above what your blood dictates your path to be. The other one I did not think about until maybe a couple months back, and that is the lesson of using the gifts you have been given to help others.
I’m about to get a little personal here. There are too many cases, fictional and real, where pain could have been avoided if someone stood against injustice. Even if he was hated by the public, Spider-Man stood tall and fought. It is the reason why “The Hangman” is one of my favorite poems. With great power comes great responsibility.
But that was thrown out the window when the asylum inmates started running the damn place. These important traits are dropped because a couple of fanbo- err, writers decided that Peter Parker is better used as an escapist character with none of the nuance. And that is not even getting into shilling he gets, subtle or not.
There are many more examples, like Superman and Batman. Superman is supposed to be representative of hope, and Batman is supposed to be representative of determination. But people would prefer to talk about how their power level, or how they are the “goddamn Batman”.
You really cannot deviate further from Batman.
This is a fear I have, for both my story and the things I enjoy and care about. One of the only two fanservice series I like is Senran Kagura. In short, it is about attractive shinobi. The reason I care about them in the first place is that they are strong and full of personality, and I am very appreciative of that. However, there are people who will entirely miss the point and literally reduce the characters to pieces of meat to look at.
Maybe it should not matter too much about other’s perception of a character, but I believe that we are supposed to understand who that character is, and reducing them to a plaything is disheartening to me.