Caricatures | Teen Ink


March 29, 2010
By littleglassbird BRONZE, Dallas, Texas
littleglassbird BRONZE, Dallas, Texas
3 articles 6 photos 2 comments

“You can’t just reduce every character to just one word: tough, jerk, funny, nerdy, inexperienced, quiet! I’ve had enough of it! You can’t just make a character complex by telling everyone he or she is. Depth is something hidden, something you only get a glimpse of in their most private moments. It’s something they have to choose to share with the audience, or a friend, or a lover in a crestfallen expression or airy smile. It’s not something to be broadcast… and everyone has something to hide and something to give and you can’t just mark them up to that one thing. They’re as good as people and even the unlikable have a soft side that should peek through when you least expect it and the sweet one has a rough edge that can tear someone to tears. Their world is anything but two-dimensional and a writer must tell their story with the care of a mother and the honesty of a judge. In the end, they’re like us, wanting to matter in this world and find purpose in each breath, and I have promised not to fail them because they have been a friend in my mind and have helped me rationalize what could not be understood and withstand what I could not take. A show needs heart, not Hallmark cards and storybook endings. It needs humor to glow in its darkest moments and fear to rise out of monotonous conversation. You can’t force drama; it has to come brittle and unadulterated and most of all,” I take a breath, my rushed voice quieting and slowing to a soft murmur, “it has to be subtle. As subtle as a whisper; a light tug that will sweep you off your feet and lower you from your high pedestal until you see like them. You’ll suffer with them, you’ll cry with them, and their joy will make your day. That’s why I took this job and that’s why I write.”

The author's comments:
So many fantastic television shows fail because the characters turn into caricatures. The producers note the qualities that the audience likes in a character and then the writers emphasis these characteristics in order to boost ratings. It's not long before the characters cease to be people at all and I'm left watching the funny guy crack jokes and the nerdy girl trip on her shoelaces. It's tragic to watch a lovable character be reduced to nothing, so I finally decided to speak out about it.

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This article has 1 comment.

KeyofG BRONZE said...
on Feb. 11 2011 at 11:41 pm
KeyofG BRONZE, Duvall, Washington
2 articles 0 photos 17 comments

Favorite Quote:
well, I want to put my favorite quote here but its too long so I can't type it on this freaking thing

I like this. Good work. :)