Tough Traveling: Snarky Sidekicks
The Thursday feature “Tough Traveling” is the brainchild of Nathan of Review Barn, who has come up with the excellent idea of making a new list each week based on the most common tropes in fantasy, as seen in The Tough Guide to Fantasyland by Diana Wynn Jones. Nathan has invited anyone who is interested to come play along, so be sure to check out the first link for more information.
This week’s tour topic is: Snarky Sidekicks
Why is everyone so serious all the time? Perhaps they need a friend that is there with a quick bit of wit to liven the day; even if the day is looking to quickly turn to blood. (Not actually found in the Tough Guide)
I thought this one would be easy, but I really had to scour my shelves! Maybe it’s not too surprising, but it’s almost all urban fantasy for me this week:
Bob the skull is a spirit of intellect, acting as Harry’s assistant and store of knowledge for magic. He has the tendency to take on the personalities of his masters, so under Harry, Bob can be a little bit of a wiseass.
Suzume Hollis, is Fort’s kitsune sidekick. She’s a faithful friend and ally, but like the shapeshifting fox spirits in Japanese mythology, she is also a wily trickster, always playing pranks on Fort and others around her.
John Golden is a “debugger”, a professional you call when you need someone to get the gremlins and other fae out of your computers and networks. John’s assistant is his sister Sarah whose personality resides in a Dell Inspiron. She’s delightfully hilarious in her remarks in the form of footnotes, always poking fun at her brother endearingly.
Ever since she was a child, Audra has been terrorized by nightmares of the psychotic clown Jinx. But now they are partners working together in the Shadow Watch, a supernatural agency dedicated to patrolling the border between our world and realm of dreams. Jinx isn’t so much snarky than he is totally insane.
Widdershins is a follower of the almost-forgotten minor god Olgun — his only follower, actually. Now he’s hitching a ride in her head, and the playful banter between the two of them comes across only as one-sided to the reader, ensuring plenty of humor to break up the tension.
Between Roan and Tao, I’m not exactly sure which one can be considered the sidekick, but both of them are free with the snark and sarcasm, whether or not the moment requires it.
How can I talk about snarky sidekicks without including the ultimate sidekick of all sidekicks: Dick Grayson. He may no longer sport the mantle of Robin, but he’s always available to put the Dark Knight in his place with a well-timed quip.
Alex’s tattoo is an unusual sidekick. The Demon changes according to Alex’s mood, thereby revealing what he’s really thinking. Not too convenient when he’s in the middle of a conversation, but sometimes, even Alex doesn’t quite know his own thoughts. Good things the Demon is there to help him out.