Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Superhero Romance Character bio #3: Tyrant

I was going to do another post on the writing process today, but I’ve taken too much cold medication and I’m feeling a bit out of it.  Thus, we’ll stick to character bios.  Today we’ll do Tyrant, who first appeared in Yesterday's Heroes, and has his own book, The Son of Sun and Sand

Kasos Octavio Victavious IV AKA “Tyrant” is head of the Consortium’s Inter-Dimensional Activities Department.  He claims to be conquering the entirety of existence, one dimension at a time.  This allows him an understanding of others even if he has just met them, as he has encountered other versions of them before in his travels. 

Kasos has black hair and gray eyes.  He is sometimes described as having an odd accent, which is understandable, as he is from another dimension.  He dresses in black leather and chainmail armor, inlayed with gold or silver designs.  He also wears a crown, which signifies him either as ruler of his own country of Victavia (which he took control over several years ago) or simply as an egomaniac.  His primary weapon of choice is his double-sided guan dao, which he treasures.  Strictly speaking, a guan dao is supposed to have a counterweight on one side, but I decided that a second blade would be more interesting.  I actually tried several different weapons, from halberds to different types of ax, before settling on the guan dao.

He spends most of his time arguing with his ever-present hostage, Princess Rayn of the Fairy Folk of the Meadow.  He kidnapped her centuries ago, and both of them seem pretty content with the relationship.  She travels with him in a small cage which he keeps clipped to his belt, and yells advice, insults or demands that he read her Nicolas Sparks books. 
Kass is an egomaniacal, homicidal, megalomaniacal, Omnicidal Maniac, who claims to be immortal and who routinely threatens to kill his teammates.  For their part, most of the other members seem to dismiss his threats as entirely empty, despite his insistence that his “Day of Days” will soon arrive.  He does seem to be religious at time, but since his religion appears to be worship of himself, that’s probably not saying much.
Of the Consortium team, besides Rayn, Kass is probably closest to Stacy and Hazard.  I don’t know why exactly, he’s just always singled them out, from his first appearance on.  Their behavior annoys him on a deeply personal level, which I always find interesting.  He can be oddly paternal, even through the death threats and cruel insults though.  In his own crazy way, I think he’s genuinely confused as to why they just won’t listen to him and do what he says.  It never occurs to him that they don’t listen because he’s crazy, so he keeps trying. 
Kass has a variety of mystical powers, which he never really bothers to use, besides occasionally blasting people with blasts of green energy.  It’s hard to gauge the power of this ability, or the limits of his physical strength, as his claims on the matter are almost certainly exaggerated.  Since only he knows what he can actually do, and he’s an egomaniac, it’s difficult to get a handle on his powers.  Even if you’re the one writing him.
Kass is what happens when you sit down and make a concerted effort to write the worst human being you can.  Just cram in everything about the human race which bugs you, and wrap it all up in some armor and a “tacky crown.”  Originally, I wanted there to be an “other” to Wyatt.  Someone who was simply evil, and who didn’t want to listen to Wyatt’s opinions at all.  Thus, I tried to create the least likeable person I could.  In his first draft, he would have been a kind of Nero, mad emperor kind of thing.  He didn’t get to do much though, and when I decided to add Rayn to the team, I stuck her with him and his character really blossomed. 
I’m not entirely sure why I named him what I did.  I usually just write down interesting words or names on a list in case I ever need one, and his was on there.  I don’t know where I got it from.  His name was originally “Kasos Octavious Victors,” but I changed it.  I honestly don’t remember why, but I still agree with the decision.  I’ve always found the “IV” in his name interesting, given his backstory (I’ll avoid spoilers for “The Son of Sun and Sand”).  I’m unsure why he always makes sure to include it.  If I had to guess, and this is only a guess, I’d say that it’s either just something he made up because it sounded cool, or else, he is signifying that he is the fourth version of himself (I could hypothesis on what versions one and two were, but have no idea on what three would be).  Or it could just really mean that his father, grandfather and great-grandfather were also named Kasos.  I’ve always kind of wondered about that, but it never came up in his book. 
Typically, I write books out of order, and on a whim one day, I gave him his own chapter while I was writing Yesterday’s Heroes.  I don’t know why; I think I was just bored one day and decided to see what he could do if I gave him the chance.  It ended up being one of my favorite chapters in the book though, and I began to really like the guy, despite his terrible personality.  Some of his ideas are just so crazy that they’re almost endearing. 
In a comic book sense, Kass represents the “cosmic ruler” character type which became popular in the industry in the late Bronze Age (70’s to 80’s), early modern age of comics.  This character is usually insanely powerful, but still fails in his galactic conquests for a variety of reasons.  They also have a tendency towards melodramatic and boastful speeches, filled with bombastic dialogue.  Overlaid on this character type is also the standard tropes of the video game villain (always capturing the same girl again and again, the exaggerated weapon, etc), as well as the grandiose egocentrism of a classic silver age villain (60’s).  Kass is after pure unadulterated control over everything in existence, which is the kind of big-thinking that any self-respecting silver age villain would respect.    
One thing I’ve always wanted to write is a scene in one of the dimensions where he wiped out the other Consortium members.  I think that would be cool, but again, it just never came up in his book.  One of these days though, I’ll find an excuse to throw that into a book somewhere.  :)
Kass is one of my favorite characters I’ve ever created.  He’s just such a terrible person, but so much fun!    


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home