I get very envious (therefore, by proxy, adore) peeps in Hollywood who know a thing or two about believable, or inter-personally REAL, character development.
Those little nuances in energy, mannerisms, tics and vocal delivery that give a protagonist depth and personalty; the little cues that are essential in order to keep a viewer in unique LIKE with the guy (or gal).
Nobody really cares about the wisdom and experiences of a robotic-persona (er, I suppose, unless you’re a Star Trek fan and dig Spock or Data).
In other words, having a main character with relating human traits causes us to wanna dive into their psyche. Without that deeper affinity, a feeling of empathetic brotherhood (if you will), their quest is meaningless to us.
Who is this guy (or gal)… really? What makes him do what he does? What drives him? Why’s he so determined to do, be, have ____ (X,Y,Z)?
A good director / head writer knows, more than anything else tied to the story-line, we need these answers — mostly to justify our time to live vicariously through the eyes of the protagonist.
This is especially vital when the lead guy is portraying a REAL LIFE character who most of society can only perceive from a DISTANCE.
In the case of, say, ShowTime’s most watched series of all-time… we know that Dexter Morgan, the fictional character who leads a secret parallel life as a vigilante serial killer, ‘could be’ a REAL possibility.. but, in the context of how he operates, really isn’t (eh, maybe every major city though could use a good Dexter in action — half-joke).
- [ Sidenote ]: the interplay between Dexter and his supporting characters is some of the best casting, the most chemistry-based dialogue, I’ve ever seen in action on screen.
Okay, okay… back to what I want to sync-up the image of this post about:
Staring David Boreanaz (the dude you know from the show BONES), CBS has put out a VERY realistic American military drama about a Tier One Navy SEAL team.
Episode 1 of SEAL Team started last year on 9–27–2017 (you can watch them all on-Demand on the CBS website). I don’t know if they’re getting a renewal for season two, but I expect they will. It’s that good.
For all the reasons I mentioned above, it also has a creator — Benjamin Cavell (co-executive producer of Homeland and Sneaky Pete) — who “gets” how to portray the dynamics of Men among boys; the leadership of legit Warrior Poets.
That is what has stood out for me most about this well-done series.
It depicts the realities of the very archetype I got to know first-hand when I was a Cryptologist stationed in Virginia Beach, Virginia.
The place I was assigned and got to know just how incredibly perceptive, hyer-vigilant, psychologically adept these trained killers / non-killers are.
Yet, on the surface (say out and about bumping into one at a cafe), you’d never know they are one. Masters of human nature, an experienced battle-won SEAL is one of the most calm, serene and confident individuals you’ll meet.
This new CBS series plays out those characteristics well.
To the untrained eye, Navy SEALS are just “physical” killing machines. That notion couldn’t be any further from the truth. The show makes it clear from the beginning that these guys are more than just ‘action figures.’
If you want to see a damn good depiction of the brave men who are often silently warding off threats without a lot of applause or public appreciation, then watch SEAL Team on-demand.
Give it at least 3 episodes, starting from episode 1, and you’ll start to FEEL what I saw & experienced being around these guys for a few years.
In short, they have as many human flaws, challenges and weaknesses as you do (especially in the ‘family’ arena). They just handle and overcome them in much more effective, fastidious, surrendering ways.
’Cause, quite honestly, without the ability to focus on what matters most, nothing gets accomplished — whether professional… or personally.