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Pretty Boy Badass

Tantz_Aerine at 12:00AM, Aug. 14, 2021
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When this guy appears for a fight, there are eyerolls or scoffing sounds. The opponents start smirking and giggling, taunting and goading him because he's dressed to the nines. Or maybe he's got a very intricate hairstyle that takes hours to get just right. Or perhaps he has a weakness for bling, or he likes roses and dresses in pink, or he really adores his long flowy girly hair.

His frame might be petite or his general look and feel may be effeminate. He may be gloriously, flamboyantly gay or metrosexual.

He is definitely not what one expects of a feared assassin, a renowned knight, a famed warrior.

Until he fights.

When this guy fights, he wipes all the grins and giggles and guffaws from his opponents' faces. Usually with his fist, sword, or gun.

This revelation is usually done only when absolutely necessary, in a flurry of motion or an explosion of quick and deadly action.

His friends have grown to expect this guy's antics and possible paramours or shopping trips for the necessary maintenance of his style. His enemies only do through experience, most of the time. In fact, when an opponent doesn't underestimate the pretty boy badass, it is used as a way to demonstrate the opponent is intelligent or more capable than others.

I really like this particular character design trope because it allows male characters (both straight and LGBTQ) to display very masculine characteristics in tandem with feminine ones, signalling that they are a person and that they are not defined by society's expectations of how men should be in order to be men.

It is also extremely entertaining to watch plus fan service, as these male characters tend to be very stylish, very handsome, or both. Bonus points if they are a pretty grounded and/or dramatic person who also manages not to take themselves too seriously- that ups the angst or drama when it is on screen.

Have you got any pretty boy badasses in your comics?

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comment

anonymous?

hushicho at 8:07PM, Aug. 14, 2021

I think most of my characters are, in their own way, pretty badasses. It's pretty common in most entertainment, to have unbelievably glamorous people be also very good at fights and other things that practically speaking will tend not to lend themselves well to perfect makeup and hair. But if they're able to throw down and still look flawless, that speaks very, very highly of them. It's hard to have an actual fight and still look great afterwards, and it's also hard to make a habit of fighting and still be pretty. Additionally, it's a very, very bad mistake to think that someone who's pretty or dainty or classically thought of as "feminine" is a weakling. Drag queens are called fierce for a reason. Don't fuck with a drag queen.

Ozoneocean at 8:06PM, Aug. 14, 2021

In litereture we have Lancelot, who was the very beautiful, perfect knight. He wasn't vain though, like the sterotype from Japanese popculture. I think the Japanese trope come from a practice of samurai that emphasied the more gentle arts along with the violent ones... Like flower arranging, makeup use and writing poetry. I think Musashi was a famous poet and I've seen a lot of depictions of Kojiro Sasaki with makeup, long hair and flowers - at least in pop culture. I think it's a pretty cool trope myself and it's really very strongly tied to samurai culture.

Banes at 10:33AM, Aug. 14, 2021

I'm an ugly man dumbass; where does that fit in?

bravo1102 at 7:22AM, Aug. 14, 2021

Perfect Tommy from Buckaroo Banzai and to an extent Buckaroo Banzai himself. Haven't really had a script so far where one would fit.

usedbooks at 3:56AM, Aug. 14, 2021

Not really. But I have a girly girl Barbie doll badass. (I probably would have such a character, but in my comic the ladies have the edge, and the men are supporting cast.) Jrpg games usually have a flamboyant party member. The most colorful was in one I recently played, Dragon Quest XI. When he was introduced, the character was so colorful and dramatic I was sure he was an irritating rival or minor villain character. Not the type that joins the questing party. But he was fun on the team, and extremely upbeat, a tension-breaker.


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