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:~: Friday, March 10, 2006 :~:

My Favorite Secondary Characters

I love secondary characters. They are the good stuff in a book. The best friend, the comic relief, the valley between the mountains, the tension relievers. My problem with secondary characters is that in my own work, they tend to try to take over. Case in point, the heroine of my current WIP was a secondary character in a previous book who I toned down in revisions of said earlier book. After that, I vowed never to write her story. I lost.

So in honor of my conniving heroine-who-used-to-be-a-secondary-character, I'm going to share some of my favorite secondary characters with you:

Samwise Gamgee - The Lord Of The Rings

I've loved Sean Astin since his Goonies days. Partly because that movie was filmed in my home state. Partly because as a kid I just thought he was cute. And I loved him in Rudy, too. What's not to love about a guy going against the odds and attaining his dream? But he was phenomenal as Samwise Gamgee in The Lord Of The Rings. Samwise is - in my opinion - the unknown hero in The Lord Of The Rings. He's all of the things above - best friend, comic relief, tension reliever, valley, and in this case, he's the one who really saves the day.

Dr. Henry Jones - Indiana Jones & The Last Crusade

Okay, I'll be honest. I picked this picture because Indy's in it. And I looooves Indy. But Sean Connery was the perfect secondary character as his father in Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade. Talk about comic relief! And conflict. He was great. I sure the heck hope he's in the upcoming 4th movie.

Inigo Montoya - The Princess Bride

Originally, I was just going to pick Mandy Patinkin as Inigo Montoya in The Princess Bride, but when I saw this picture, I remembered how great Vizzini (Wallace Shawn) and Fezzik (Andre The Giant) were. Wonderful secondary characters - one evil at heart, the other two redeeming themselves in the end.

Riley Poole - National Treasure
Whenever I watch National Treasure with my seven-yr-old, she always asks, "Mom, what do we call that guy again?" (Meaning Justin Bartha who plays Riley), and I always laugh and say, "Comic relief, honey." I know some people find him irritating, but Riley Poole makes me laugh every time. I think it's his dry sense of humor, or maybe the fact *I* find his sense of humor funny.

And gee, I'm starting to see a pattern here. All my favorite secondary characters are male. Hmmm..... Oh, wait. there is one female I can think of:

Gloria Cleary - Wedding Crashers

Fabulous psycho "stage-five clinger". Isla Fisher was hilarious as Gloria Cleary in Wedding Crashers. And she's got the best eyes.

So who are your favorite secondary characters?


Blogger Paty Jager said...

I LOVE the secondary characters in my stories! I don't watch enough movies to tell you the secondary characters in one that I like. But, I love Lula and Grandma Mazur in Janet Evanovich's Stephanie Plum Mysteries!

9:19 AM  
Anonymous Lisa Pulliam said...

Secondary characters are the best. Other than my hero, I'm addicted to them in my MS. They are so fun to write.

I love your choices. It looks like the guy from National Treasure has his own show coming out on TV. I like Sean Astin too, but have you seen him on 24 this season? What a jerk! And the chick from Wedding Crashers!!! LOL. Best movie ever!

2:11 PM  

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