ysabetwordsmith: (Schrodinger's Heroes)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
I started with the very brief descriptions from [personal profile] melannen's "101 Asexy Sex Scenes" post in [community profile] asexual_fandom, then fleshed out the characters enough to write about them. In particular, the sex and ethnicity for each character were randomly generated; so if you think a particular combination was planned and must mean something, no. The only predetermined sex was for Tim the Tentacle Monster.

Then I filled in character traits with an eye toward creating an effective adventuring party, so that their strengths and weaknesses balance out. "Core" refers to the characters and world as introduced in the first episode. "Alter" refers to other versions of those characters originating in some other dimension. So bear in mind that character traits can vary across the dimensions, and that's a fundamental part of the show. It challenges people's ideas about identity and personality.


Melannen's Characters

Alex -- The main character, Alex, is an absent-minded genius and generally serves as the brains of the team. Skilled in the sciences, especially physics, Alex is oblivious to many social cues. Alex is also independently wealthy; there are other funding sources for the project, but Alex bought the compound. She can cook tolerably well over a bunsen burner but not so well in a kitchen. Alex's leadership is the visionary and motivational kind; she is the sort of person that people look up to. However, she can be flighty and distractible, skipping from one topic to another with dizzying speed or spacing out while people talk to her. She talks with her hands a lot. Alex relies strongly on Bailey for many worldly matters, and works closely with Ash on scientific matters.

Alex's sexual orientation is not specified in canon, but there are hints that make asexuality a plausible interpretation. In order of frequency, fanfic writers tend to render Alex as asexual, bisexual, lesbian, or heterosexual. Core Alex is a white woman with sandy hair that tends to curl. Core Alex also wears glasses with large round lenses and gold frames; alternate Alexes wear glasses too, but the frame design varies.

Ash -- The research and computer expert, Ash is the person everyone turns to for information. She appears frequently to provide a bridge between Alex's grasp of software and theories vs. Bailey's grasp of hardware and practicalities. She enjoys a particularly close working relationship with Alex. Ash has a laserlike focus when concentrating on something, and is easily startled then. Otherwise she is calm and economical in her movements. She grew up poor and can get touchy about money. Conversant in numerous languages, Ash speaks English, Wichita, Dinè (Navajo), Spanish, French, German, and Latin among others. Although parts of the Teferact software belong to Alex and utilize conventional computer language, Ash has designed her own computer language inspired by Dinè and Wichita; much of the compound uses Ash's language, including the security features.

Ash is canonically asexual. She does not seem much interested in physical relationships. Her romantic orientation is not specified in canon, but available material suggests that she leans aromantic. In fanfic she is more often written as aromantic than romantic. However, she does form close platonic relationships with other people; her actions imply that she views the rest of the Shrodinger team as family-of-choice. There are hints that she's had a rough time in the mainstream culture regarding her sexuality, but more acceptance in tribal culture. Core Ash is a Native American woman (intertribal with a Wichita mother and part-Navajo father) with straight black hair and copper skin.

Bailey -- Alex's regular partner in fighting evil, Bailey is the common sense of the team. Bailey is good at jerryrigging, repairs, and other practical solutions. Often Alex designs something that Bailey builds. Bailey also serves as the treasurer for the team. Bailey's leadership is the organizational and motivational kind, with a warmer note of camaraderie; he is the sort of person that people charge into the breach with. He has moved around to different parts of America so he has very wide experience and contacts. Bailey is deeply devoted to Alex and good friends with Pat.

Bailey's sexual orientation is not specified in canon, but there are hints that make bisexuality a plausible interpretation. Episodes show him responding to female (such as Kay in "Harnessing Power") and male (such as male!Morgan in "Snips and Snails") subjects. His closest relationship seems to be with Alex, although it is not specified as sexual, romantic, or platonic in canon. Fanfic frequently pairs him with Alex in various configurations, more rarely with male character or group. Core Bailey is a mixed-race man with wavy brown hair and naturally tan skin.

Kay -- Originally one of the security guards at the compound, Kay attracts Alex's attention during the pilot and gets promoted. Kay is ex-military with experience serving as a combat medic. She doesn't always stop to consider whether orders are ethical before following them, and she tends to place expediency and safety over morality in general. This can intersect oddly with the compassionate thread that sent her into medical training, and she is sometimes haunted by nightmares from her military service. Kay has an iron constitution: never seems to get sick, can eat anything, drink larger people under the table, and run for hours. She is also ambidextrous. She looks up to Alex and often gets exasperated with Quinn. Kay customarily provides physical backup when Alex, Ash, or Morgan need to go inside the Ring.  Kay typically appears when someone has been hurt, or needs to be hurt.

Kay's sexual orientation is not specified in canon, but after the BDSM elements in "Harnessing Power," kinky is a probable aspect of it. She can be reluctant to get erotically involved with her coworkers (as in "Refolding the Map") without a compelling reason (as in "Harnessing Power"), possibly a holdover from army rules about not fraternizing in the ranks. Fanfic often portrays her as a switch in BDSM, and not monosexual in choice of partners. Core Kay is a Hispanic woman with curly black hair, relatively pale skin sometimes described as vanilla latte, and aristocratic Iberian features.

Morgan -- Flown in as a consultant from Mauna Kea Observatories, Morgan decides to stay due to a fascination with strange sky phenomena and the potential opportunity to communicate with nonhumans. She speaks English, Hawaiian (both 'Ōlelo Hawaiʻi and pidgin), and Japanese. Aside from her profession, Morgan has kind of an "ordinary girl" vibe; she helps people keep their feet on the ground even with their eyes on the sky. However, she has not traveled much so is far less worldly than most of the other team members, which can leave her at a disadvantage in some situations. She also gets cold very easily. Morgan likes Bailey and enjoys working with Alex and Ash.  A supporting character, Morgan does not appear in every episode.

Morgan is resolutely vanilla and monosexual. (Interestingly, canon does not specify heterosexual or homosexual, only mono.) Fanfic often matches this, although some writers switch things around. Female!Morgan/male!Morgan is a favorite pairing. Sometimes Morgan appears in a nonsexual pairing with Ash or Alex. Core Morgan is a Hawaiian woman of mixed Hawaiian/American/Japanese descent with straight black hair and tinted skin. Note: The actress who originally played Morgan died tragically in a car accident. She was replaced by the actor who played Morgan in "Snips and Snails." This transposition gets addressed onscreen in "A Door in the Wind."

Pat -- Both the social glue and the lubricant, Pat keeps the team together by smoothing ruffled feathers when necessary. Pat also handles public relations, negotiations, and most other interactions with the outside world. He could talk the sun into rising five minutes early. The downside is that he can be manipulative and fussy. He's a good cook, and he makes the best coffee out of everyone on the team -- whether it's Quinn's café au lait or Ash's "Indian coffee." He likes nice cars, which tends to get him pulled over for "driving while black," which puts him in a bad mood.   (He drives a red Bentley sportscar -- inspired by the Mulsanne executive interior and the Continental GT exterior -- named Scarlett. It's modded with all kinds of extra equipment for work-related reasons.)  Pat particularly likes Quinn's fun-loving lifestyle.  He appears in most episodes.

Pat is canonically pansexual and poly and pretty much up for anything. His flexibility shows up in "Harnessing Power," but he misses "Last Woman Standing" because he's marrying someone new into his poly family. Fanfic has paired Pat with everyone up to and including Tim, sometimes all at once. Core Pat is a black man with nappy black hair and milk chocolate skin. Pat's hairstyle sometimes changes across dimensions, although the color tends to remain dark.

Quinn -- One of Alex's many weird friends, Quinn is present for the pre-grand-opening party and later called in by Alex to help deal with the weird stuff, because Quinn never freaks over anything. He has traveled from Sept-Îles and Montreal to St. Louis and New Orleans, and he's seen it all before. Quinn knows a great deal about both pop culture and history, and works as a consultant for alternative businesses. He likes Ash, perhaps a bit too much for her taste; and Pat, who enjoys his company. He speaks French and English. He can be snotty about the "superiority" of French, and not always tolerant of other people's "sexual limitations." Quinn doesn't do well in the dry Texas heat.  A supporting character, he does not appear in all episodes.

Regarding his canon sexuality, Quinn dislikes all labels and especially binaries. He seems to regard all manner of sexual expression as good fun, though doesn't seem inclined to settle down with a permanent partner. In fanfic he winds up in the most outrageous situations and combinations. When writers need a partner for Kay in extreme kink, it's usually Quinn. He is also genderqueer, and uses masculine pronouns. Core Quinn is a French-Canadian man with fair skin. His hair color/style changes with every episode and is often in technicolor.

Tim the Tentacle Monster -- Tim is a nonhuman who comes through the Teferact and is unable to get home, in "A Can of Worms." So the team makes room for him, not wanting to turn him out on the street. Tim is lonely, but gradually becomes more attached to the humans. A major canonical cuddle scene occurs with Alex and Tim during "Last Woman Standing." Tim knows a lot about astrophysics, but can't quite get a grip on all the aspects of quantum mechanics that Alex and Ash handle in the Teferact. However, he's willing to help Bailey and Morgan brainstorm ideas for a starship. Tim is the ultimate outsider, both baffled and fascinated by aspects of Earth's cultures and wildlife.  As Tim joins the team in progress, he does not appear in every episode, and later tends to show up for cultural or technical reasons.

Tim's sexuality is canonically unclear. Tim assures the heroes that his species reproduces, but he has been unable to explain the process to them. Every attempt at translating the concept results in a different miscommunication, even the valiant illustration with a jello salad during supper. The humans suspect that even though Tim uses masculine pronouns, "male" is probably an approximation of Tim's sex/gender. Fan writers usually place Tim in an asexual relationship with Ash and/or Alex. However, "send Tim home" and "get Tim a tentacled mate" are also popular motifs. Tim looks like a tall pile of writhing tentacles of different sizes and shapes, and he can change colors for expression or camouflage.

* * *

You may also want to read previous posts in this series:
Ad #1: "Alex and Bailey in the Closet"
"About the Show"
Ad #2: "Pat Meets Ash"
"Characters (Part 1)"
Ad #3: "Kay and Quinn in the Office"


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