Welcome to Part 2 of Theatrefolk’s Superhero Series! In our last post, we talked about creating an original superhero character. Now we’re going to give the superhero a sidekick. Batman has Robin, Harry Potter has Ron and Hermione, Mario has Luigi, Iron Man has War Machine. A great sidekick helps a superhero to shine brighter, but also helps to enhance the story, gives the hero a bit of humanity, and sometimes even saves the day.
Here are some questions to pose to your students to get their ideas flowing about sidekicks (there are a lot of questions here; don’t feel you need to use all of them!):
Using the Super Sidekick Character Profile Worksheet below, have students create their own sidekick character for the superhero they previously created. The worksheet is similar in nature to the superhero worksheet, but has some additional questions about how and why the sidekick joined forces with the superhero, as well as how they might react if the superhero were incapacitated in some way. Would they step up and take a heroic stance, or would they need the superhero to recover and rescue them?
Wow — that’s a lot to think about! It can be challenging to create a good sidekick character because they need to be compelling and fully imagined, but not take away from the hero of the story. Otherwise, the character would no longer be the sidekick; they’d be the hero. If students are finding as they write that their sidekick is more interesting than their hero, it’s certainly not bad or wrong. Have them hold onto those thoughts, because they’ll come in handy for future exercises with their superhero and sidekick characters.
Next on the docket is — dun dun DUN — the bad guys! Crooks, cretins, criminals. Yes, next week we are talking villains. It’s good to be bad!