Ode to a Bad Boy...

From Anne McAllister's post on the Pink Heart Society Blog...

Mads discussing his reasons for playing LeChiffre... "I think if you are playing the bad guy, you try to show a good side to him sometimes, and if you are playing the good guy, you try to show a flaw in him, so it's not one-dimensional for the audience. . . Every good character has to have that dualism inside of them."
He discovered that dualism in LeChiffre, found a backstory that made him a real person he could get inside of and, in so doing, created a character who was, if not redeemable (because this is a Bond movie after all), still human.

Of course, she's talking about an interview that was done with Mads Mlkkelsen about his character in Casino Royale, but truly for anyone who writes characters with a bit of a tarnished personality, aren't these the things that we look for?

I love writing bad guys. I don't know if goes back to liking the bad boys (I certainly was attracted to my fair share of them), but I have always been intrigued by the idea that given the right circumstances, that bad guy could have been the hero.

I just finished Irish Rain. I'd been struggling with it, not because of the plot but for my own personal reasons. I let the fears in my life stagnate my writing. But then, don't we see these same traits in our characters? Aren't these the things that make them memorable and even make us like the bad guys... sometimes more than the hero.

For Irish Rain, my soul reason for writing the book was to show that given one moment in time, one simple decision, one change in outlook... the bad guy... in this case his name is Cador Phinn... could have been the good guy. He certainly has his own justifications for doing the bad things he's done, but in his own story he would be the hero. It's a matter of perspective.

Thought for the day... and thank you to Anne for understanding the importance of a great bad boy.


Anne McAllister said...

I'm so glad you appreciate him, too, Teagan. And yes, it's that ambiguity and complexity that makes him intriguing -- and that makes us keep reading (or writing as the case may be!).

Thanks for reposting him!

Nina Pierce said...

Hey, Teagan. I'm usually a lurker on your blog, but I came out of lurkdom to tell you "tag... you're IT!" I'm pretty sure you've been through this before. If not, scoot over to my blog Around the Writer's Block to find out what kind of trouble I've gotten you into!

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