introduction • Before venturing into King Arthur’s tales, we’ll stop to study The Hero’s Journey. • Joseph Campbell studied thousands of myths and stories from all cultures to find what, if anything, made them alike. • What he found was this: all fulfilling stories/books/movies follow The Hero’s Journey. • Today we’ll cover the archetypes, which are the characters of the stories. Tomorrow, we’ll cover the events of every journey.
warning • What you are about to learn may ruin your ability to enjoy movies, television, even books for a time because you will be thinking about how they fit the archetypes and the Hero’s Journey. • If this happens to you, my apologies.
First…a Video! • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yZxs_jGN7Pg&list=HL1378782599&feature=mh_lolz
hero • The protagonist of the story • They should act, sacrifice, and ultimately grow over the course of a story • Early heroes often are “faultless,” like Beowulf, but most modern-day heroes have flaws, such as Batman, Harry Potter or Katniss.
Untraditional heroes • Anti-hero: Heroes who don’t fit the traditional hero mold. Outlaws, criminals, and rebels fall into this category. Consider Scarface, Bonnie and Clyde, Danny Ocean in Ocean’s Eleven. • Group oriented heroes: An entire group can occasionally be a hero, such as in the movie The Breakfast Club. Together, they all grow and learn, and none have a “starring” role. • Loner heroes: These are especially common in westerns. Men living on their own but are forced back to society to complete a mission. • Catalyst heroes: While heroes usually change the most of all characters, a catalyst hero doesn’t. Instead, he/she causes change in others. Ferris Bueller and Captain Jack Sparrow are catalyst heroes.
HERALD • The herald announces the call to adventure to the hero. • Often, this character must motivate the hero to take action. • Heralds can also play other archetypes in a story, such as a mentor. • Heralds don’t have to be human. They can also be inanimate objects, such as Harry Potter’s letter.
Herald examples The Hunger Games The Reaping Juno Positive pregnancy test WHAT EXAMPLES CAN YOU THINK OF? WRITE THEM IN YOUR NOTES NOW! Ferris Bueller’s Day Off Ferris’s phone call to Cameron The Godfather The Godfather is shot Beowulf Beowulf hears stories of Grendel
mentor • Mentors teach, coach, and give gifts to the hero. • A hero may have more than one mentor during a story. • Mentors don’t have to be fully “good people.” Mentors, like heroes, can have faults and their own agendas. • Usually mentors appear at the beginning of a story, but they can reappear at any time. • Some heroes, such as superheroes or heroes in westerns, don’t have a human mentor. They have an inner mentor—a code of honor, a belief system, or moral set of rules that they follow.
MENTOR examples The Hunger Games Haymitch Juno Her father and stepmom WHAT EXAMPLES CAN YOU THINK OF? WRITE THEM IN YOUR NOTES NOW! Ferris Bueller’s Day Off Ferris (he’s a catalyst hero, a mentor to Cameron) Harry Potter Dumbledore Star Wars Yoda
Threshold guardian • Threshold guardians are obstacles that the hero must overcome. • They are not the key villains. They are smaller villains, minor characters, who stand in the hero’s way. • They serve as tests for the heroes.
Threshold guardian examples The Hunger Games The other tributes Juno Ultrasound Tech WHAT EXAMPLES CAN YOU THINK OF? WRITE THEM IN YOUR NOTES NOW! Ferris Bueller’s Day Off His parents Harry Potter Snape Beowulf The watcher; the sea monsters
Shapeshifter • A shapeshifter is a character who is not what they appear to be. • At first, they may appear to be “bad,” then they save the day. Or they may appear to be “helpful,” but they’re secretly working against the hero.
Shapeshifter examples The Hunger Games Peeta The Lion King Scar WHAT EXAMPLES CAN YOU THINK OF? WRITE THEM IN YOUR NOTES NOW! The Beauty and the Beast The Beast Juno Mark Loring Beowulf Unferth
shadow • The shadow is the dark side, the nemesis, the ultimate enemy of the hero. • All the lessons the hero learns in a story builds up to fighting the shadow. • The hero must overcome his/her greatest fault to beat the shadow.
Shadow examples The Hunger Games The Capitol/Pres. Snow The Lion King Scar WHAT EXAMPLES CAN YOU THINK OF? WRITE THEM IN YOUR NOTES NOW! Ferris Bueller’s Day Off The Principal & Cameron’s father Harry Potter Voldemort Beowulf The Dragon
Wrapping it up… • These characters are present in every story if you look for them. • Remember that characters can be more than one archetype. A mentor can be a shadow. A hero can be a mentor. A herald can be a threshold guardian. • What makes great stories are the unlimited combinations!