Wednesday, October 14, 2015

WEAPONIZING your CHARACTERS


There is something brilliant in selecting a weapon for a character that not only works for what must be done story-wise, but which defines the character in specific and perfect ways.


Wasn't that fun?

Not always, but often, there is more going on than just arming your characters. Sure, it could be a world where blades are commonplace and no one is startled by seeing a man with a blade on his belt. But maybe it is a world where only certain people have blades. Then it is a status symbol, displaying power and evoking responsibility. Or maybe, as the Walking Dead franchise is pretty good at showing, the taking up of the weapon is symbolic of the change of mindset in the character.
Did the character fashion the weapon out of ingenuity and need?
Was the weapon a gift of rank?
Was it earned or taken by force?
What did the character go through
to get to the exact place in time
where he could claim the weapon?
What did possessing that weapon mean to the character?



You could feel what the weapon meant to him, right?
Approaching with disbelief, yet in need.
The childlike wonder and joy in claiming the weapon.
The confidence gripping it bestowed him.
The freedom from the chains it gave him.


And what about a character who does not need a visible weapon to
Destroy an Enemy With His Mind?



And what about those who are not the obvious product of fiction,
but who are real and could be in line behind you at the grocery
or in the apartment upstairs, or the cubicle next to you?

 I'm talking about the subtle, sweet faced character armed
with something that cuts deeper, slower,
and does every bit as much damage
as a well-honed and poison-tipped blade.



"If that's how you remember it."

"Gaslighting is a form of emotional abuse where the abuser manipulates situations repeatedly to trick the victim into distrusting his or her own memory and perceptions. Gaslighting is an insidious form of abuse. It makes victims question the very instincts that they have counted on their whole lives, making them unsure of anything. Gaslighting makes it very likely that victims will believe whatever their abusers tell them regardless as to their own experience of the situation. Gaslighting often precedes other types of emotional and physical abuse because the victim of gaslighting is more likely to remain in other abusive situations as well."  (Article this is from is HERE)

I don't think this would be easy to write (both emotionally and tactically), though with the latter the problem of showing the reader everything the victim-character is buying little by little while the reader screams, "You know better!"

3 comments:

  1. Ash and the Chainsaw = perfect example of weaponizing a character. :D

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  2. Thank you! {And thank you for posting the video last week while I was trying to Snake Pliskin. (: } I think I like it best when the character is the weapon, and what we would traditionally think of as the weapon is really just the tool that brings them to the realization that they have the power to impact the world to make reality instead of just experience reality. Think Batman.

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    Replies
    1. Of course! Glad you won the battle!

      As for the example of character as the weapon, I'd choose The Crow over Batman. Wayne's unlimited financial resources are a weapon all on their own, a resource he's never without. Arguably, since he's never been without, it could be considered a part of him...~waffles~

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