Whenever I write about the surly Saiyan, chills go throughout my body, mainly because I fear for the response I’ll get from DBZ fans. I’ve made myself out to be quite the Yamcha defender in my time here and there was that one time I called Vegeta stupid. I’m pretty sure if I conducted a study on DBZ fans, 80% of them would be Vegeta fans. And why not? He’s the product of Goku’s biggest strength and weakness: mercy. He’s cool when he’s pissed and cool when he’s pissy. Makes a pretty good fighter, too.
There is one aspect of him I never liked, which ironically and paradoxically makes him a good character: his character development. Look, don’t get me wrong. Cool idea. I’ve heard many things about blowing himself up to defeat Majin Buu or whatever. I dunno the context there but still, cool idea.
It’s terribly executed. This man slaughtered most of the Z-fighters. And don’t give me that “oh but that was Nappa and that Saibaman” bullshit. Vegeta ordered them to kill Yamcha, Chiaotzu, Tien and Piccolo. He was in charge.
And everyone seems to forget about that city he and Nappa freaking destroyed. That’s some pretty grim shit.
But hey, he helps out on Namek, right? He saved some asses over there. I mean, he slaughtered a whole village, schemed against our heroes and abandoned them for his own needs (try to match the events from the show to these. Hint, first one is frikking obvious.), so water under the bridge. Let’s forgive him!
And that’s the thing. They forgive him. Bam. Almost immediately. Even the Namekians aren’t the least bit pissed when the asshole brags about killing a whole village of their people. They just grunt and murmur a bit and it’s pretty much forgotten when they move to a new subject. Where’s the rage, the emotion, the lashing out? Why doesn’t Vegeta pay the price for his actions?!
And Bulma, holy hell, Bulma. Put yourself in her shoes. This guy who has a rep for being a murderous and unforgiving asshole lands near your home. You go over there to see what’s up and there he is. What do you do?
Let’s see…Some good answers here. “I’d shit myself.” “Call the cops.” “Use the nearest human as a meat shield.” All very good answers…but you’re wrong. All of you hypothetical readers are wrong, you dumbasses.
YOU INSULT THE MAN’S STENCH!
First thing Bulma does when she meets Vegeta again is comment on how stinky he is. This man is a known murderer who has done nothing to redeem himself. How is she attempting any sort of banter with him now? Of course, what else do I expect from the woman who flirted with said murderer a year ago. Granted, he did give a good idea and their friends were going to be resurrected so she was in a good mood but if someone who murdered my friends came up to me when I was having difficulties and gave me a solution, I’d be grateful but I wouldn’t effing trust the man! He’s freaking dangerous!
And everyone’s cool with this except Yamcha, who is seen as being a jealous twat for doubting Vegeta. What? What BS is that? That’s common sense! He doesn’t want to die a second time by this guy’s hands. He wants to enjoy life! But fuck it. Let’s take the easy route and piss on Yamcha!
I really need to stop defending Yamcha on this blog. Shows too much of a bias.
Anyways, Vegeta assimilates with the humans with no effort whatsoever and even hooks up with one of them. Wha–HOW?! HOW THE RAT’S ASS DO YOU–FUCKIN’–WHAT?! This moved way too quick. I know in the show, a year has passed since he’s back on Earth but once more, Vegeta does nothing to prove himself to be a good person cause all he does is train in that time. There is no effort. As funny as his banter with Bulma can be, it makes no sense, especially for someone who quaked in her boots whenever Vegeta’s name was mentioned.
Let me conclude this rant with an alternate route Vegeta’s redemption could’ve gone down: Launch. I know what you’re thinking. “Who the bloody hell is Launch? You inserting your fanfic into the equation now, SantaRobin?” No, she’s a character, most prominent in the original Dragon Ball show. She has two identities, which she changes between by sneezing: blue-haired nice girl and blonde gun-toting bitch on wheels. She would be perfect with Vegeta. I think she’s paired up with Tien in the show but in DBZ Launch is never shown aside from one scene in some filler with Tien…I think. Look, I’m foggy on the subject. Launch just seems like a legend of some sort, she’s so obscure. Point is, break those two up, since all Tien does is train with Chiaotzu (lack of attention is always a good reason for breaking up. We never see Yamcha train so it’s assumed he gives Bulma some attention so dammit I’m defending Yamcha again. Someone control me…), and pair her up with Vegeta. Blue-haired Launch is a character that listens to Vegeta and depends on him, while blonde Launch kicks Vegeta into line and keeps watch on him, makes sure he does nothing stupid. It’s a nice balance, one that maintains Vegeta’s character. He can be a jackass to blue-haired Launch who just yesses him, but change and become a better person when blonde Launch tells him what’s what.
What makes this even better is that Launch is a character. Not much to be said there.
What do you guys think? Was this development too rushed? Too unbelievable? Does my alternative make sense? Your comments are encouraged. Leave a like, reblog, follow, yadayadaya. I’ll be seeing ya soon.
Character building is one of my favorite parts of writing a
novel. I love seeing where they’re going to take me and where their journey is
going to end up. Even though I plot extensively before starting a new novel, I
always leave room for the characters to lead me somewhere new.
So, what’s the secret
to building an unforgettable character? Here are some tips to lead you in the
They need to be
If your audience can’t relate to your character, that’s
usually a huge problem. We relate to characters like Harry Potter not because
we’ve been to Hogwarts and practiced magic, but because we can relate to his
pain and to his connection with his friends. He represents emotions that a lot
of us have struggled with and he doesn’t quite feel like he fits in. His struggle
to find himself is relatable.
Take some time to figure out what your character ultimately
represents and don’t be afraid to bring emotion into it. We want to feel
connected to your characters and we want to find something in them that matches
something in us.
They need to be
It’s important that your character’s actions should remain
realistic. Not in the sense of remaining true to our world, but to theirs. Their actions should make sense
in context to what they’re going through. If you’re constantly questioning why
a character would do something because it just doesn’t make logical sense, you’ll
have trouble respecting that character. It’s important that we understand their
They need to be
A good character is a go-getter. I’m not saying they will
always make the right decisions or that they’re all good people, but all main
characters/protagonists should be able to do things on their own. I’m also not
saying they don’t need help, but they need to overcome the big challenges on
their own or through what they’ve learned. They can’t just stand around waiting
for everyone else to finish things. They need to take initiative at some point,
and this should be due to their personal growth throughout the story.
I understand that this point does depend on the story you’re
writing. Maybe your character is an unmotivated person. Maybe they’re
lazy. This usually doesn’t matter
because a story isn’t interesting if that person remains inactive. They can have periods of inactivity and become
unmotivated during parts of your story, but ultimately that does need to change
at some point.
They need to have
Flaws will humanize your character and are usually what
stands in your character’s path to success. A character that does everything
right all the time and doesn’t have any growth because they’re already perfect
is VERY BORING. They should fail and they should learn lessons. I’m not saying
all their flaws should be fixed by the end of the novel because that’s not how
people operate in real life, but character flaws should help build interesting
"Fisher doesn’t get nearly enough credit for the many different layers he’s brought out in Mickey over the years.“
"It was Fisher’s uncharacteristically quiet performance in those same moments that resulted in a heartbreaking showcase for the actor.”
"Fisher’s Mickey has become the embodiment of that contrast that the show has so carefully created. It’s not a balance easily maintained, but Fisher does it masterfully.“
”Fisher crushes it. He nails the subtleties of his character and the emotional battle of wills going on inside his head. When Mickey tells Lip that he’s sorry that he didn’t do anything earlier and that he didn’t know it could get this bad, it’s a perfect moment of character introspection and growth without it being overplayed.“
under the cut is just a statistics format i threw together from a few different ones floating around. it’s very extensive and is mostly specific to non-supernatural characters. if there’s high demand, i’ll be glad to put together a supernatural one as well.