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CHARACTER CREATION and MAXIMIZATION TOOLS\

 

                           

 

In this section you will find five proven "tools" to assist

with new character creation as well as character

maximization and deployment:

 

     ● Character Archetypes Model        

     Character Identification Patterns

     ● Character Power Quadrant

     ● Character Summary/Personality Worksheet

     ● Character Dynamic Example

Character Archetypes Model

CHARACTER ARCHETYPES

 

A Character “Archetype” is a type of character which has persisted in literature and entertainment media down through the ages - such as the HERO and VILLAIN.

 

The Archetypes are:

 

___HERO 

 

___HEROINE 

 

___SIDEKICK 

 

___KING 

 

___QUEEN 

 

___RULER

 

___PRINCE 

 

___PRINCESS

 

___REBEL 

 

___MOTHER 

 

___FATHER 

 

___WISE OLD MAN

 

___WISE OLD WOMAN

 

___TEACHER 

 

___GENIUS

 

___COACH

 

___SEEKER

 

___CAREGIVER

 

 

___UNDERDOG 

 

___CREATOR 

 

___INNOCENT      

 

___JESTER  

 

___BUFFOON 

 

___IDIOT

 

___VICTIM 

 

___MAGICIAN  

 

___WARRIOR

 

___VILLAIN 

 

___DESTROYER 

 

___WITCH

 

___DARKSIDE CHILD

 

___ORPHAN 

 

___MIDGET

 

___GIANT

 

___GHOST

 

___MYTHOLOGICAL, e.g.: TROLL

 

 © 2000 YMS / The Character Lab / Innertainment Inc. 

 

Whether your "Character Program" consists of only 1 character, a character and a sidekick, or a whole cast, it's critical to design the character or characters as the archetype(s) that will maximize the consumer/audience's IDENTIFICATION. (See next Model). When a cast of characters is designed, the character "mix" is critical.

 

The Star Wars cast of characters for example, appears to have it all: Hero (Luke Skywaker), Wise Old men (Yoda and Obi-Wan Kenobi), Heroine/Princess (Princess Leia), Rebel (Hans Solo), Genius (R2D2), Buffoon (C3PO), Main Villain (Darth Vader), many other Villains.

 

Other examples:  Tony the Tiger (muscular Hero), Chester Cheetah (cool Rebel), Lucky the Leprechaun (mythological),Bugs Bunny (clever Hero), Miss Piggy (Darkside Child), The Joker (Villain), Casper (Ghost), Mervyn (Magician)

 

 

Character Identification Patterns

 

An "Identification Pattern" is essentially  the relationship the child has with a "character"

- either human or animal, anthropomorphic/ cartoon-like or real human personality. 

That is, how does a child relate to and interact with the human or animal? There are

5 Identification Patterns that children become involved with in their relationships to dolls,

animals, and human and cartoon characters of all types:

 

NURTURING

 

 In this relationship, the child either nurtures the toy doll, animal, etc., (e.g.: a Cabbage Patch Doll), or is nurtured by it (e.g: Big Bird, Mr. Rogers, Barney). 

 

Or, nurturing impulses arise in the relationship.

 

This ID pattern is strong typically with younger children.

LIKE ME               

 

A "Like Me" relationship  or identification pattern with a character or doll means that the child sees the doll, animal, human or cartoon character as like themselves in some way.

 

e.g.: A little girl might see  a Strawberry Shortcake mini doll or Dora the Explorer as somewhat like themselves - as a little girl, approximately her own age.  Or a little boy may sense that some of the emotions of a stuffed bear character are like his own.

 

This ID pattern is typically the weakest given narrower opportunities for identification.

EMULATORY

 

In an "Emulatory" Identification Pattern" the relationship is one in which the child emulates or "wants to be like" the human or animal character / object.  (e.g.: A Power Rangers figure, a Barbie Doll, Arnold Schwartzenegger.)

 

This ID pattern is typically extremely powerful as  the human need for control/power is very strong.

 

 

 

ENTERTAINING

 

In this relationship, the individual's expectation of the character is one of being entertained. 

 

The consumer/viewer may not want to be like this character or see it as either nurturing or "like himself", rather, the point is the "character's role is to entertain me,  especially through HUMOR.“

 

Many examples: Tasmanian Devil, Daffy Duck,  Sponge Bob Square Pants and Jim Carrey characters

 

DISIDENTIFICATION

 

This is a different type of "Identification" in which the child does not want to be like the character, animal, or personality, but is attracted to and involved with them because of their "darkside" or negative attributes.

 

e.g.: Villains are typical objects of disidentification - such as Darth Vader, Luther of Superman,  Angelica of the Rugrats, or soft villains such as Wil E. Coyote .

 
© 2000 YMS / The Character Lab / Innertainment Inc.         

          

 Sample Character Power Quadrant

 

                                                      

                                                

 

CHARACTER NAME:  GARFIELD

HIGH POWER                                                                                           HIGH POWER

POSITIVE IDENTIFICATION POSITIVE IDENTIFICATION
___Lightside Character 

__Unique/Different

___Vulnerable 

__Hero/Winner Archetype

___Tender 

__Intelligent/Clever

___Innocent  __A Leader
___Loving  __Happy/Carefree
___Shy __Independent
 

___Warm/Friendly

 

__Multidimensional

  __Funny/Humorous
 

__Exciting/Stimulating

 

__Competitive

 

___Nurturing

  __Self-Assured/Confident
  __Physically Appealing
TYPICALLY WEAK APPEAL / POWER* __Emotionally Expressive
___Physically Unappealing  
___Loser Archetype     ATTRACTING DARKSIDE APPEAL
___Non-Unique, Passé   __Darkside Character
___Dupe/Stupid 

__Mean

___Follower    __Manipulative
___Dependent

__Moody

___Unidimensional  __Abusive
___No Humor  __Obnoxious   
___Predictable __Impulsive
___Boring/Non-Emotional      

__Rebellious

 LOW  POWER                                                                                           HIGH POWER

                                                                                    

* While often weak in overall power and not effective as cast leaders, there are

   many support characters that are effective being stupid or unidimensional.

   e.g.: Eyeore of Winnie the Pooh and the Dumb and Dumber duo.

 

  © 2000 YMS / The Character Lab / Innertainment Inc.                

 

 Sample Character Summary/Personality Worksheet

 CHARACTER NAME: GARFIELD

 GENDER:   __Male  ___Female  

     

       Maleness  1  2  3  4   5  Femaleness

 

 MARKETABLE QUALITIES: Unique "Look",

Physically appealing Cat, Humor          

DEVELOPMENTAL STAGE/AGE: Teen

 

CHARACTER'S  MISSION: To have whatever he

wants whenever he wants it.

 

ANIMAL/HUMAN: Cat

 

CHARACTER'S ATTITUDE: "Everyone is here only

for one reason - to serve me."

 

SOMATOTYPE (BODY TYPE): Mesomorph

CHARACTER'S PHILOSOPHY OF LIFE: "Life is......

all about me and what I need and want."

 

CHARACTER NEEDS: Food, Control/Power,

Release

 

 QUOTABLES: "I'm not always right, but I'm

never wrong." "What's for breakfast?"

CHARACTER WANTS/AFFINITIES: Food, Sleep,

Manipulating

 

IDIOSYNCRACIES: Laziness, Gluttony, Brazen

 

   HUMOR STYLES: 

PREDOMINANT BEHAVIORS: Eating, Sleeping,

Manipulating his "owner", Jon, Harassing Odie,

Opining

 

 

PREDOMINANT EMOTIONS:   

___Love    __Boredom    ___Excitement 

__Anger   ___Embarrassment  ___Hate 

___Sadness  __Jealousy __Irritability

___Envy   __Frustration    ___Surprise 

__Glee   ___Joy  ___Fear 

 

CHARACTER "ESSENCE": Garfield is the most

demanding, self-centered, weird-cute, humorous

orange comic cat ever.

 

 

 

__Physical Slapstick 

 __Sarcasm

___Taboo, ie: Sex, Ethnic, Gross    

___Incongruity/

Irrationality

__Sudden Surprise/The Unexpected  

__Affectionate Ridicule,  "Put Downs"  

__Satire

 

___Victim/Butt of Joke

___Word Play __Outrageous Behavior
__Puns,Gags, Jokes,Wisecracks   ___Reckless Abandon  

                                  

EMOTIONAL RANGE:   ___Narrow   __Moderate

__Broad

 

             

___Language Elements: Unique Voice

 

      

ENERGY LEVEL   __Low   __Medium   ___High 

___Very High

 

 

CONTROL STYLE:  ___Physical   ___Intellectual 

___Social  ___Emotional   ___Ethical

 

 

CONTROL USE:  ___Nurturing   ___Cooperative  

__Competitive __Manipulative   __Abusive

KEY RELATIONSHIPS: Jon, Odie

CHARACTER ARCHETYPE/ROLE:

 

___HERO   ___HEROINE  ___MOTHER  ___FATHER 

___RULER  ___SIDEKICK    ___KING   ___QUEEN

__PRINCE  ___PRINCESS  ___UNDERDOG    

___BUFFOON    ___VILLAIN   ___ORPHAN

___SEEKER   __REBEL   ___VICTIM    ___JESTER

__CREATOR  ___INNOCENT     ___WITCH    

___MAGICIAN    ___WARRIOR   __DESTROYER

___WISE OLD MAN     ___WISE OLD WOMAN

___TEACHER  __DARKSIDE CHILD ____MIDGET

___CAREGIVER ___GIANT ___GHOST ___Idiot

___MYTHOLOGICAL, e.g.: TROLL  __Genius

 

 © 2000 YMS / The Character Lab / Innertainment Inc. 

 

 Character Dynamic Sample  

When a cast of more than 2 characters is being created or maximized, it's extremely useful to

arrange the characters in what we term their "Character Dynamic". This model illustrates the

relationships between the characters with arrows, and also shows positive and adversarial

relationships via the green and red arrows. In addition, the sizes of the circles represent the

relative importance of each character.

 

 

                                       

 

 

Please feel free to talk to us about how the creation of, or maximization of, a "Character Program" for your

company or enterprise could result in significant youth impact. CONTACT US

 

 

                             
 
 
 
     
   

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