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Sun Jun 9, 2013, 02:09 PM

The Dorklyst: 7 Minor Characters Nerds Made Famous

Link: http://www.dorkly.com/article/14038/the-dorklyst-7-minor-characters-nerds-made-famous

Writers, directors, and artists all put a lot of work into designing awesome characters that nerds will obsess over. Sometimes this works and you make a cool space wizard like Darth Vader, other times you screw up and make a whiny emo teen like Anakin Skywalker. Fans are fickle like that: sometimes there's no explaining what makes a character worth talking about. For example: here are 7 extremely minor characters that nerds deemed obsession-worthy.

7) Youngster Joey (Pokemon)
Youngster Joey is the first trainer you battle in Pokemon Gold/Silver/Crystal after your Rival. In case you haven't heard, he's got a Rattata. Did you know that his super cool Rattata is in the top percentage of Rattatas? Yes? Doesn't matter, he'll keep phoning you and feeding you the same line of BS about how special his Rattata is again and again for the rest of the game, no matter how many times you and your team of elemental murder-beasts pound his dumb little rat into pudding.

Listen kid, your Rattata's not special. And since you never bothered to catch another Pokemon to back it up in battle, I'm pretty sure it hates you, too. After countless players were subjected to Youngster Joey's inane, semi-grammatical prattling, "My Rattata is in the top percentage of Rattatas" became a widespread meme online, proving that the internet loves mentally-handicapped pokemon trainers, or that it just hates itself. Maybe both.

6) Joseph Frost (Resident Evil)

Joseph has the dubious honor of being the first person you see die in the original Resident Evil. Your helicopter lands in the forest outside the Spencer Mansion, everyone walks around for a little bit, then Joseph gets eaten by a dog. The guy doesn't even make it through the opening cutscene. In a game full of zombie-fodder teammates, Joseph is arguably the suckiest.

But that doesn't stop people from inexplicably falling in love with him. While not as famous as the others on our list, Joseph is notable for just how far his fans had to reach to come up with any info about the guy. A quick YouTube search for "Joseph Frost" shows about a page of tributes featuring terrible pop songs over poorly drawn caricatures. Since we learn literally nothing about him in the 5 seconds he's alive during Resident Evil, we can assume that people think he's cool because he wears a bandana. To be fair, it is a sweet bandana.

5) Hypnotoad (Futurama)

Hypnotoad appeared only twice in Futurama's entire original run, once as an entrant in a pet competition who bent the judges to his indomitable amphibious will, and then again as the star of his own sitcom, Everybody Loves Hypnotoad (which consisted of nothing but Hypnotoad glaring at the audience for 22 minutes). Both appearances were, in true Futurama fashion, supremely weird and funny; they knew what they could get out of the Hypnotoad gag without running it into the ground. They left that part to the internet.

The simple insta-punchline of ALL GLORY TO THE HYPNOTOAD is practically designed to be a meme, as is his pulsatingly-pupiled, poker-faced visage. This one joke has been repeated ad-nauseum online, to the point where one has to wonder: what is it about this character, a fat, slimy lump with the power to make everyone love him, that appeals to people on the interne- nevermind.

4) Sexy Blue Striped Shirt Girl (Lost)

In a show where all the main characters are absurdly beautiful, only the Internet would become enamored by the one actress who's rarely on screen. Despite contributing nothing to the story, Lostpedia has documented the character's every miniscule action. Since she never said or did anything, there's a lot of "she walked by," "was present for," and "listened to." Not exactly tantalizing.

Still, she's drawn a large Internet following and even her own fanpage. Lostpedia even tracked the actress down for an interview, where she revealed that she had written a back story for her character. Say what you want about her irrelevance on LOST, she's officially the hottest person ever to write fan fiction.

3) Error (Zelda)

Error spends most of his days chilling in a deceptively large house in the village of Ruto, where he impresses people with his sweet purple tunic and his classic catchphrase, "I AM ERROR." While it may seem like the handiwork of an angsty programmer peeved with the unfortunate, side-scrolling direction the Zelda franchise had taken, the actual reason is even nerdier. Elsewhere in Ruto lives a man named "Bagu," (which is the japanese romanization for "Bug". Seems some witty programmer decided the one thing Zelda II was missing was a pair of glitchy bearded brothers named "Bug" and "Error." However, this amazingly clever bit of computer humor flew clear over some underpaid American translator's head, and as a result, the phrase "I Am Error" joined the eternal pantheon of "Reasons We Think Japan is Silly." The joke came full circle when it was uttered by Fracktail the dragon in 2007's "Super Paper Mario," showing both Nintendo's willingness to admit it's own "errors" and the internet's inability to ever let anything go. Ever.

2) Figwit (LotR)

The LOTR series never actually named this character (and I use the term "character" loosely). "Figwit" is an acronym given to him by fans based on the phrase, "Frodo Is Great…Who Is THAT!?" So what did ol' Figs do that garnered him so much attention? He sat next to Aragorn for one scene in "The Fellowship of the Ring." That's it. He could have been replaced by a decorative bush.

Female fans gushed at his dev-elvishly (I'm sorry) good looks, calling him "Legolas for the thinking woman." Some theorized that he's Legolas' gay lover; a hefty assumption for a guy who was on screen for 3 seconds. Taking notice of all the buzz, Peter Jackson actually gave Figwit a couple lines in "The Return of the King." He's since inspired action figures, trading cards, and an hour-long documentary. Bret McKenzie (the actor who played Figwit and half of Flight of the Conchords) even earned himself a role in "The Hobbit" as another generic elf. Additional information on his role is purely speculative at this point, but the Internet is hoping for some elf on elf action.

1) Boba Fett (Duh)

The king of characters who rose above their station, Boba Fett is a prime example that fans, not directors, decide how popular a character will be. Originally just "that dude who stood next to IG-88" in Empire, the combination of Boba Fett's nifty armor, cool toys, and ruthless demeanor sparked a chemical reaction of Badass that is still burning in the hearts and minds of Star Wars fans everywhere.

The lack of backstory allowed fans to mentally fill in the blanks with the most awesome character they could imagine, and even his pathetic death cemented his legacy. Had he died nobly, fans may have been content to let his demise stand as canon. But his hilarious screaming somersault into the Sarlacc was so ridiculous, so utterly unacceptable, that it drove fans to demand additional backstory and adventures beyond what is depicted in the films, adventures which now fill an entire expanded universe. Let's compare:

Lines spoken by Boba Fett in the original trilogy: 4
Words in Boba Fett's Wookiepedia page: 35,000

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Reply The Dorklyst: 7 Minor Characters Nerds Made Famous (Original post)
Jamaal510 Jun 2013 OP
LeftOfSelf-Centered Jun 2013 #1
sofa king Jun 2013 #2

Response to Jamaal510 (Original post)

Mon Jun 10, 2013, 05:19 PM

1. No Derpy Hooves?

Maybe she's on the list of animation errors that nerds made famous...

Also there's a website called Wierzbowski Hunters (http://www.wierzbowski.net/) which chronicles all the sightings of the character Wierzbowski in the movie "Aliens".

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Response to Jamaal510 (Original post)

Tue Jun 18, 2013, 12:12 PM

2. What about Barney from Half Life?

He got his own expansion pack that nobody played:


And the nerds are trying to do a total conversion of Blue Shift for HL2:


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