Monday, February 9, 2009

Hero Archetype: The Best Friend

The Best Friend

I wanted to take this archetype because it’s so completely opposite of what I write and I’m trying to expand my horizons. I write Warriors, true alphas, bossy, sometimes brash, stubborn, sometimes arrogant, who are able to face life threatening experiences without flinching.

The Best Friend Archetype is a true Beta. He’s an all around nice guy, kind, decent, who offers his shoulder to lean on, or cry on, which ever the situation merits. When emotionally things are bad, he’ll be there to hold your hand or mop your tears. But he’s so understated that the idea of romance never occurs to you. But it might sneak up on you once you get to know him. I think he's growing on me.

The Best Friend archetype is so laid back and easy going he fits in everywhere. He does nothing to call attention to himself, yet everyone seems to like him. In a crisis, he’s the cool head of reason. In a fight, he’s the negotiator, or the peacemaker. He’s supportive, stable, dependable, and tolerant, but his lack of assertiveness pushes him to the background and denies him the attention he deserves.

The Best Friend Archetype may have dreams he wants to pursue but never shucks the responsibilities of friends and family long enough to follow them. He has a set belief in how he should behave molded by his place in society. His self-confidence bolsters others self-confidence. He’s practical, understanding, and a good listener and can offer level- headed advice.

The Best Friend Archetype is very observant and can read people. He has a need to help others because it appeals to the nurturing side of his personality. He’s the guy next door who’ll come over to help you move in. Or barring that, he’ll fix you a meal after you’re done.

The Best Friend Archetype is drawn to occupations that help others. Vets, carpenters, dentists, doctors, policemen, or teachers. His empathy for other people makes him understanding and generous. He may not be as dynamic as some of the other characters, but his inner strength and stability makes him good husband and father material--once he’s gained the heroines attention.

One of my favorite movies is Dave with Kevin Kline. Dave is a Beta hero every moment of the film, but by the end of the movie you’re cheering him on because of his ability to maneuver through the political shark-infested waters of Washington D.C. and still mange to do the right thing-- without once raising his voice or becoming anything less than what he is.

Tell me about some of your favorite Beta characters in books and in movies. Or some of the Best Friend characters you’ve created. I’m eager to hear about them.

Write on,
Teresa Reasor

15 comments:

lastnerve said...

I love the best friend guy! They are always there and can cry with you through everything.

Amy Durham said...

I have a real soft-spot for The Best Friend Archetype! And I, should... since I married my best friend. No joke, Kevin and I were best friends for a few years before we ever dated. You are right about how the notion of romance doesn't occur to you or seems ridiculous. But, once the idea crops up, it's like being struck by lightning and the falling in love happens quickly. I like best-friends-turned-lovers stories because the level of trust between the two people is so profound, and so easy to achieve. The relationship takes on a great emotional depth almost immediately.

Love the picture of Jeffrey Dean Morgan there. Is he hot or what?!!

Amy

Teresa Reasor said...

Last Nerve:
Thanks so much for stopping by. And yes, they can cry with you.
Teresa

Teresa Reasor said...

Amy:
Thanks for joining me. And I can see where you and Kevin would have been best friends. You have sooo much in common.
And yeah I love Jeffrey Dean Morgan. Love those dark, handsome, masculine men. He can be my best friend any time.

Kytaira said...

Hmmm, this one is really tough for me. I honestly can't think if a single best-friend type of guy that does it for me. I'm not a big movie fan so that is part of the problem.

Lil said...

I have been reading so many romances with alpha heroes that nothing immediately comes to mind on my favorite beta hero titles. The funny thing about this is that I actually enjoy reading about these more laid back and balanced characters. And when it comes to real life, the alpha male would so not work for me.

Teresa Reasor said...

Kytaira:
Thanks so much for joining the blog.
And I usually gravitate toward the Alpha heroes, too, but recently I've seen more and more movies that have the Best Friend archetype. Like Just Like Heaven with Mark Ruffalo. Luke Wilson usually plays the best friend in his movies. Justin Bateman has the best friend vibes in his as well.
Teresa

Teresa Reasor said...

Lil:
Living with an Alpha man would be really hard, they're so driven, arrogant, and ect. So yeah, those Betas usually end up making better husbands. But those Alpha's are just soooo over the top sexy to read about. But with that Best Friend Archetype you have a steady, dependable strength that would really be attractive when looking for husband material.
Write on,
Teresa R.
Teresa

kat1reader said...

When I saw you were blogging on Best Friend heros - I had to come check it out. My favorite heros are the best friend heros, or heros who are "oh-so-in-love" with their heroine. Put them together, and I'm a gonner...
Some faves? Lori Foster's An Honorable Man (BTW - a Lieutenant Colonel Alpha hero) and Maya Bank's Seducing Simon (a firefighter)

Teresa Reasor said...

Kat:
So glad you could join us. I'll have to check out Lori Fosters Book, I really love her writing.
Teresa

Amy Durham said...

I agree that Alphas are sooooo much fun to read, but that Betas probably make better hubbies in reality. That's why, for my reading prefs, I'll read a BUNCH of alphas, then sort of search out a beta. It started out sort of unintentional, but I realized what I was doing... tempering the over-the-top alphas with an occasional sweet, easy-going beta. Makes me appreciate both of them for the unique and special qualities they each possess!

Val said...

My favorite guys in movies are Bruce Willis, Mel Gibson,Tom Cruise and John Travolta, whatever part they play in their movies I fall for them completely! Hook,line,and sinker, reel me in men I am all yours!

Jennifer Madden said...

Mmmmm.... I love the best friend angle, especially if they've both been fighting the attraction all along. Yummy!!!

Marie-Claude Bourque said...

What a great type to blog about :)
I usually go for alphas warriors, ect. But When Harry Met Sally is still one of my favorite film. A best friend can be so romantic :)

jj Keller said...

Fantastic blog!

 
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