Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Consortium of Chaos superhero romance novel character bio #8: The Narrator

Let’s do a seldom used character, but one who I’m always glad to see appear, simply because I find him funny.

James Ackroyd Sheppard AKA “The Narrator”, is a thin dark haired man with a smooth voice.  He usually wears a brown corduroy coat, and dresses like a “Beatnik professor” according to Wyatt.  I would guess he’s somewhere around six feet tall, and has perfect elocution.
To be perfectly honest, I have no idea what Jamie does in the Consortium.  He is occasionally present in some of their meetings, so I would imagine that he is a department head, but whatever he’s the head of exactly, hasn’t been revealed.  I’d be shocked if even he knew what his exact job was.  He doesn’t seem to really care.
Jamie has the power to “turn fiction into non-fiction whenever he desires.”  That is, by narrating something, whatever he says is happening, begins to happen.  In the past, he’s used this ability to create animals to annoy the other members of the Consortium, narrate himself a white stallion to ride because he wanted to make battle more dramatic, and becoming one of the few members of the Consortium who actually briefly succeeded in taking over the world, when he altered reality to make himself “Grand Pharaoh of the Americas” before being stopped by the Freedom Squad.    
Not very much of Jamie’s past has been revealed.  He claims to have been a “highly paid writer and voice-over actor”, but I think that’s almost certainly a lie.  In fact, I’m positive it is and was even when I first wrote that.  He is also in the midst of writing his memoirs, “The Author of Darkness and Dawn, Volume 1”.  Reportedly, the book is painfully dull, although Jamie yells at anyone who tries to read his rough draft.
Jamie has the habit of going off on long self-aggrandizing speeches, and loves to talk about himself.  He claims to not understand the idea of loyalty, and frequently claims that the other members of the Consortium are merely minor characters in his story.  He has a flair for the dramatic, and believes that he is destined for better than the life he currently has.  He argues that nothing that happens matters unless is involves him, because he’s the main character.  He hates when people criticize his decisions, saying that they are “crows” pecking at “eagles.”  He seems to believe that the rest of the world is filled with philistines who constantly try to “destroy his text.”
In the past, he has referred to himself as the “greatest and most powerful super-villain of all time” (probably a lie) and as being in effect, a god (definitely a lie).  He does appear to have both the power to manipulate reality, and at least some psychic abilities, as he’s able to correctly read people’s thoughts, often before they even have them.   
The basic idea for the character came late one night while watching “Water for Elephants” (don’t judge me) and "The Rules of Attraction" (Damon from "The Vampire Diaries" FTW!).  I was struck by how annoying the narration was, and how much more fun it would be if the Narrator just described outlandish things which would then befall the poor confused actors.  This in turn reminded me of the John Candy movie “Delirious”, and the film “George of the Jungle”, where the narrator of the film gets into an argument with a member of the cast and his co-star utters the incredulous line “Where you arguing with the narrator?”  
And Jamie was born.
His name comes from the Agatha Christie novel, “The Murder of Roger Ackroyd” and its narrator, “Dr. James Sheppard.”  AGATHA CHRISTIE SPOILER:


Christie’s novel is one of the first to ever use the idea of the untrustworthy narrator (the narrator is revealed at the end of the story to have committed the murder himself) and I thought it fitting that Jamie should be named after him.  (END SPOILER)
Long-term, Jamie’s someone I’d like to see in the forefront more.  I just need to figure out a way to get him to focus on someone other than himself for once.


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