What Makes Characters Likeable? (Part II)

If you’ve been following my blog, I wrote a post last week on this topic. If you can recall, that was only part I. Now to present to y’all with more reasons why we fall for characters, ladies and gentlemen, I present PART II!

GAJEEL, FAIRY TAIL

Gajeel is the type of character that’s on the road of redemption for his actions and acceptance from the people around him. He’s a wizard that uses Iron Dragon Slayer Magic, one of three taught Dragon Slayers in the story (the other two being Natsu and Wendy), and he used to be a part of the corrupt guild, Phantom. During his time at Phantom, he only hurt the Fairy Tail guild members because Phantom and Fairy Tail were supposed to be enemies. What makes us cheer for these type of characters though? All Gajeel wants are friends and loving family to be around, but he just never shows it to maintain his “tough guy” personality. However, his actions clearly show it, causing viewers to fall for Gajeel, wanting him to be accepted by everyone else. Also, there are Gajeel and Levy shippers everywhere.

Gajeel

Gajeel has some pretty hysterical moments as well. Occasionally, he puts on his white suit and sings his depressing crank heavy metal music, resulting in various items being thrown at him by the crowd. And below shows Gajeel’s condition after realizing he’s the only Dragon Slayer without a cat.

no cat

LEVI ACKERMAN, ATTACK ON TITAN

Levi. Arguably the best Titan killer in the whole series. When I was first watching Attack on Titan, I hated Levi. He was blunt, rude, and alienating in ways. He was a jerk, to be simple. He’s that type of person that people don’t want to be around. I mean, who’d want to be around a jerk who would likely insult them at any given point in time?

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But then Levi’s character slowly grew on me. I started to realize that Levi deeply cares about his comrades. When his special squad died, he was mortified. He listens to those respectable to him. And he values human lives especially, wanting as little casualties as possible. He just probably wants to insult weak commoners and those not of his Corps to show them that they aren’t out there in the field fighting for everyone, and they seem to be living peaceful lives, which they shouldn’t complain about. So, someone who values his comrades and wants to save the lives of others, and isn’t arrogant. These traits make Levi a hero and a favorite, even if his personality is almost opposite to someone like Allen Walker. He’s also a clean freak.

EDWARD ELRIC, FULLMETAL ALCHEMIST (BROTHERHOOD FOR ANIME)

Edward Elric. Another hero. So what makes him different than the other heroes I’ve mentioned already (Allen, Levi)? Well, to start off, he’s shorter than the others (never call him “short”). Calling him short will result in a punishment you’ll never have imagined. But he does get taller in the end. Adding on to that, Ed has a very short temper. It’s not only cute, but hilarious as well. Since Al, his brother, is stuck inside that sit on armor in most of the duration of the series, people usually ask something like: “How come you’re smaller if you’re the big brother?” Then something weird happens with Ed’s face and violence typically ensues (Al’s real life body is actually taller than Ed too).

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But other than his height, what are the other reasons why people love Ed? Ed’s a fighter. Throughout the story, Ed fights for the people around him, not for himself. And his main goal in the story is what make people cry. He’s fighting to get his brother’s body back. The relationship between the two brothers is what make people instantly fall in love. Speaking of relationships, his one with Winry is perhaps the best love relationships I have ever seen in anime/manga. Love is another reason why people have their favorites; people like to adore over relationships, or some would rather dream of themselves being with that character…

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ASUNA YUUKI, SWORD ART ONLINE

Asuna, the strongest female player in all of Sword Art Online. You don’t often find female characters as leads in a series, but not only Asuna is a lead, but she’s a major powerhouse as well. With strength as well as spirit, Asuna’s character gives girls someone to admire or relate to. Other than in the horrible Fairy Dance arc, Asuna will never be seen as a damsel-in-distress character, and you’ll always find her fighting at the front lines, with other males in the story depending on her instead.

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Like Ed had his relationship with Winry, Asuna has her relationship with Kirito. Their coupling is generally regarded as the most popular in anime (I’d like to argue for Ed and Winry’s/I ship Kirito and Sinon). What makes their relationship different than that of others is that you have two characters who are independent falling in love. Normally, the female character is the one who needs help, but (let’s not mention Fairy Dance) none of the lovers are ever stuck in “damsel-in-distress” situations. What makes them special is the fact that they are equals, making her a clear symbol of admiration and girl power.

AMAIMON, BLUE EXORCIST

Amaimon, son of Satan. So what makes us root for the bad guy? It has to be that cute horn on his head, right? And those eyes? SOOOOOOOOOOOO HOT.

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Well, that probably is one of the reasons, but why does the audience love bad guys like Amaimon? Well, first of all, it’s probably his personality. He appears to stay calm and collected at most times and seems to be very carefree. Though sent to Japan to help out Mephisto, he decides to take a tour instead. Adding on, during fights, he stills keeps that personality, making us root for the bad guy because our hero, Rin, is so angry. He has belief that he is extremely skilled, and his actions appear to show arrogance. Doesn’t that sound a bit like Waver (refer to Part I)?  Amaimon doesn’t lose his cool unless he’s on the losing side, or someone takes away his fun. Doesn’t sound like your typical villain, right? Also, his hamster form is totally “ADORBS.”

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SHUSEI KAGARI, PSYCHO PASS

What truly makes people fall for Kagari’s character is his personality. Though labeled as a “latent criminal” since the age of five and trapped in a facility until deciding to become an Enforcer, someone who works as a hunting dog with detectives, he still manages a carefree personality in life. He still finds time to play video games and play sports, and his main hobby is cooking. Wouldn’t the ladies love that? And the audience loves funny characters, and Kagari’s practically the jokester of Ginoza’s squad.
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What makes Kagari special is the fact that he has his big moments as well. When in serious situations, you can find him fighting hard, though still with the reckless and loose style that the audience loves. Even when he was about to die, you still found him grinning at the very end. He had a COOL HEROIC DEATH, even though no one really knew about it until Akane.

HIRO SHIROSAKI, GLASSLIP

Hiro’s case is a bit different than the other six. I see him as a favorite character because I can’t get myself to like any of the others, except maybe Touko. The main problem, though, seems to be the anime itself. It created a lot of confusion within the first couple episodes, and if viewers didn’t choose the time to think about the anime carefully, then they would’ve never understood the story. There’s also a lot of weird situations too, such as a stepsister falling for her stepbrother, while he likes another girl in the group of the friends, but she likes the new kid in town. Hiro seems to be the only character that isn’t involved in a messed-up situation, and the character that makes the audience go “AWW. HOW CUTE.”

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What makes the viewers fall for Hiro, other than the fact that the others are a bit complicated? The way he chases the girl he likes. So he’s in love with a sickly beauty, Sachi, someone that people wouldn’t even think about. Sachi’s that type of girl who loves books, and because of her, Hiro starts to read as well, using that as opportunities to visit her more often. While hiking, he’s the one to carry her up the mountain when she she needs. When she couldn’t attend the Fireworks festival, he made a show himself just for her. Who wouldn’t like Hiro? But then there are moments like below…AT LEAST HE TRIED.

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CONCLUSION

As y’all can see, there are a countless number of reasons why people like characters the way they do. Ranging from redemption characters (Gajeel) to chillaxing bad guys (Amaimon), I bet there are many other reasons out there that I have not yet mentioned. But guys, this is likely my last post on favorite characters for a while (I managed to do seven examples!), and it’s highly unlikely I’ll have any new ones anytime soon. So I hope you guys really enjoyed my presentation, and continue to stick around for more posts on various topics in the future!

~Dennis?

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5 thoughts on “What Makes Characters Likeable? (Part II)

  1. Pingback: How Do You Like Me Now? | Toeses Are Roses

  2. Pingback: My Top Five Favorite Animes | Shadows of the Day

  3. Pingback: A Soon-Nostalgic Experience (just kidding) | Shadows of the Day

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