Directed Activity · Fiction

‘We’re All in This Together’

One topic in the world that I don’t think is talked about enough isn’t political, it isn’t radical, and it isn’t something that I will go on a heated rant about. But, it’s something that I enjoy discussing.

Group dynamics in TV, films, and books.

One thing that attracts me to a piece of media above all else is when there’s an interesting team at the forefront of it. Things like Six of Crows, Voltron: Legendary Defender, or The Avengers always catch my eye. What these things have is people from different backgrounds coming together to work as a team when the time is right. Watching, or reading, how these dynamics work and continue to grow is incredibly interesting.

In Six of Crows, for example, there is a ruthless gang leader, a swift ex-tightrope artist, the illiterate son of a business man, a gambling sharpshooter, a brooding witch hunter, and a take-no-crap seductress. As I was reading the book, and watching these characters interact and develop relationships, I found myself growing attached to the group dynamic.

I wanted to see Kaz, the gang leader, become even more of a big brother towards Wylan, the business man’s son.

I wanted Nina, the take-no-crap seductress, to give Inej, the ex tightrope artist, the hug she so clearly needed.

I wanted to see Jesper, the sharpshooter, bond more with Matthias, the witch hunter.

There were so many different layers I wanted to explore and before I knew it, the book was over. Group dynamics make the read seamless, and it’s like watching a film inside my head. Books overloaded with description and nearly no interesting characters or character dynamics bore me. I even find myself writing more dialogue than action.

Sometimes it can be seen as a weakness.

I’ve been told countless times to ‘include more description, Robyn’, or ‘You have too much dialogue, Robyn’. But, to me, dialogue is what makes a book interesting. I want to see how one character would react when another insulted them. Would it be with a witty remark or a punch?

How would they work as a team? In Voltron: Legendary Defender, the best episodes were when they had to develop as a team, and learn to work with one another. Maybe it is some part of myself that is fascinated by the human psyche. I like to guess what they would do, who would do what, how the dynamic would break, or come together.

Of course, I have a fascination with individual relationships, but they are already talked about a lot. Just look at Tumblr. What people don’t tend to talk about as much is how these characters work as a group. Give me grudging acceptance of help, give me polar opposites coming together when they need to, give me teamwork, give me different skill sets that work together seamlessly in the end.

Group dynamics in books, TV, and film are SO interesting to talk about, and I could go on forever about specific groups, TV shows I like, or books that have enchanted me. I’ll stop here for now though, before this officially becomes another rant.


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