Monday, January 21, 2013

Underused Characters: Daimen from House of Night

*This Post Contains A lot of fuzzy remembering of the events of the series House of Night by PC and Kristin Cast, snark about them, and also some of the book's
I'm sorry I'm dragging you into something "House of Night"-related, River...
 Reader, Ye Be Warned*

  I dislike the House of Night books.

I mean, I liked them at first. The first book, Marked, was pretty good. Not perfect, but decent. But as the series went on, I slowly realized they could have should have stopped at one and moved on. After Awakened, Moriarty's voice popped in my head and said:
"You can’t be allowed to continue. You just can’t. I would try to convince you, but everything I have to say has already crossed your mind."
  Which was weird, since I hadn't watched Sherlock yet...

Anyway, I might re-read/finish them to do reviews on them someday, maybe in 2014 when the first movie comes out (oh sweet lord almighty WHY WOULD THEY MAKE THEM MOVIES?), or if I absolutely have nothing to read and get desperate (that's why I finished The Twilight Saga!), but I just... no. I don't want to read them anymore without another motive.

  One big problem I have with these books is how a lot of the characters feel underdeveloped. Mainly, the main character Zoey's friends (excluding Stevie Rae and Aphrodite, since they're apparently the only ones who matter and are allowed to develop or do anything). Yeah, pretty much the only reason they exist is:
  1. To do rituals when the plot demands it
  2. To prove that Zoey has other vampyre/fledgeling friends to back her up besides Stevie Rae.
  3. And possibly to show, "Hey, one of her friends is black and another one is gay! Look how wonderful, unracist, open-minded, and accepting she is! LOVE HER, DANG IT!"
  What I'm trying to say is, they're more like props than characters. Which is a shame because one of the characters I felt had a lot more potential, was/could've been interesting, and I would rather read about than the protagonist! That character is Daimen.

  Before I go into the character, lets go over the book series in a nutshell. The story revolves around seventeen-year-old Zoey Redbird. Zoey is a vampyre (yes, that is how it's spelled here) fledging (a not-quite-a-vampyre-yet) at a special school for fledgelings while the go through the change into adult vampyres and hope they don't die from their bodies rejecting the change. Then it's discovered Zoey's the mega-super-awesome-specially-special one with power over all five elements (earth, water, fire, air, and spirit), the representative of the vampyre's goddess, Nyx, and has magic-y vampyre tattoos she gets like every book before she's even a real vampyre (all vampyres here get these tattoos that represent them on their face once they're a full-grown vamp. Like cutie marks on MLP: FiM!). And everyone just adores her! In short, she's kinda a total Mary Sue... I mean she's the chosen one! Yeah... (I got a 54 for her on The Mary Sue Litmus Test. But then, again, I haven't read these books in almost a year (hallelujah), so I'm a bit rusty...)

  But who cares about her? I sure as heck don't. I'm here to talk about Daimen!

  Daimen was introduced in the first book, Marked, as one of the friends and classmates of Zoey's roomie Stevie Rae (and then Zoey herself). They quickly let us know that he is gay, and offers to give them male insight on things without hitting on them. (Because everyone knows straight boys can't be friends with girls without hitting on them. Pssh, that's nonsense! ...Sorry 'bout that...) And also, we're informed that he's different from the other gay HoN students (whom we never see), in that he's not the effeminate-type. He's also shown to be rather well-read, and uses more advanced vocabulary. And to top it off, I think that he was also shown to be a good fencer!

  As the books went on, Daimen gained the power of  (or "an affinity for") wind, and I believe that it's mentioned male vampyre usually don't get powers (at least, not powers of the elements). And he gets an incredibly stereotyped boyfriend named Jack. And said incredibly stereotyped beau was killed for sacrifice in the last book I read because he was so purely pure.

  Anyway, I thought Daimen seemed like a fairly interesting character. I mean, an intelligent, fencing, wind-powered gay vampire? That just sounds awesome! I even hoped when Stevie Rae "died"/ went to the dark side, that he could get more focus. (In fact, it's even been said that he's Zoey's closest friend out of her initial group after Stevie Rae.) Sadly, that never happened. What I want to ask is, why?

  Why did a character with the potential to be interesting get so underused?

  I think part of it is the writers. Like I said, quite a few characters end up being little more than props. Daimen's barely got any sort of plots in the books since I read. The most he got was when Jack died, but even that was mostly glossed over and we barely even saw. What the heck, writers? Why do you skip over most emotional stuff? And he seems like he had the groundwork for some good stories. Especially in the hands of better writers who are better at the development of characters (JK Rowling or Moffat and Gatiss for example, anyone?)

  For example, it's mentioned that he has parents who dissaprove of his sexuality. And that he kept disposable cell phones out of fear in case something went bad. Is this ever touched on again? NO! Just like almost every other thing that doesn't concern Zoey or Stevie Rae!

  To be honest, I would rather have a story about him. Not Zoey. Zoey's annoying (yes, we KNOW you don't like to swear and all, Zoey. And neither do I. But seriously, even I say "crap". "Bullpoopie" just gets annoying...) and I'm sick of her polygamous ways. Daimen could be a much better protagonist. A book about a genius gay teenage vampyre who controls air and can fence? I would totally buy that book and read that! I would FUND the publishing of that book. How many gay vampire characters are out there, honestly? There is an untapped market, here! We'd make millions! Sure, we may or may not get some controversy, but who cares? We did something new!

 Anyway, that's my two bits on Daimen. A character idea that was cursed to be stuck in a terrible series.

  ...Now if you'll excuse me, I got an idea for a post that elaborates my list of complaints about this freakin' series. 

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