|Zachary Quinto as Spock & Zoe Saldana as Uhura in 2009's Star Trek © Paramount Pictures|
Children, I've learned, have a way of reducing most things to their absolute essence.
For instance, my daughter and I were discussing, a while ago, why certain characters in books and movies appeal to us. And, since she's entered her teens now, our talk narrowed from a discussion of "characters" to a discussion of "men". More specifically, heroes.
"Well," she said, in trying to explain why she was predisposed to like a certain character, "he needs a hug."
And it occurred to me that many of my own heroic preferences could probably be easily reduced to that one common, plain denominator: Most of them could really use a hug.
Take Spock, for instance. I've always found the character of Spock, whether played by Leonard Nimoy or Zachary Quinto, to be incredibly attractive, and that archetype continues to attract me—strong and silent, self-contained, and self-protective, forced by circumstance or nature to remain calm on the surface while suppressing their true feelings, though we sometimes get a tantalizing glimpse of inner turmoil... I adore that kind of character. Hotch, on TV's Criminal Minds, is a Spock, as is Cho on The Mentalist, and there are others who fit the same mould, and who all seem to need a good hug.
|Gregory Peck as Atticus & Mary Badham as Scout © Universal Pictures|
It can be a fine line, for me, between heroes who need to be comforted and those who need to be carried; between a strong man who's a little repressed and a man who's so damaged he'll drain all the heroine's energy. But here, again, I've discovered that using my daughter's "he needs a hug" yardstick is pretty effective in measuring heroes to find those I think are attractive.
|Michael Fassbender as Rochester & Mia Wasikowska as Jane Eyre © Focus Features|
I know other women would argue that Heathcliff's in need of a hug, too (well, maybe a hug and a WHOLE lot of therapy), but that's my personal take on those characters.
Who's your most huggable hero?
(And come back on Thursday, for Julie's next post)