Fictional character traits
Wordy — verbose, long-winded
Wordiness is a symptom of anxiety perhaps, (covered earlier), or tension. Wordy diversions also explore class differences, privilege, intellectualism. In some cases, we need it for backstory told by characters designed to appear talkative. Those characters are rarely around long, or interest audiences beyond their utilitarian existence.
Once in a while, we come across the delightfully wordy. In Henry Fool, we get nothing short of a grammar lesson. Thomas Jay Ryan, aka Henry Fool, has a way of infusing mundane moments with charm – even in a lesson about the differences between there, they’re and their. With a cigarette hanging from his lip, Henry offers a grammar lesson that’s absurdly long, natural, and captivating.
What about a good old-fashioned lesson on proper talkin’, folks? Imagine one such character digging into the correct use for it’s, or ranting about how ‘ve is not the same as of.
Viggo Mortensen’s Hitch teaches Ed Harris’ Cole the finer points of language, and it’s a delight to watch. When Cole can’t find the word to describe what he’s thinking, Hitch helps through grammarian banter and proper punctuation with a display of cowboy testosterone.
Stories are a collection of words crafted into narrative and dialogue, but we rarely hear them spoken with nerdy aplomb. For good reason. It’s the melodrama, scandal, eroticism the writer or filmmaker wants to capture. So, when a story character finds his way into the world of wordy education, that is a rush of entertainment.
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