Thursday, March 24, 2011


Ever read the description of a character in a book, put your own spin on the characters's look only to be disappointed when they make a movie and that character looks nothing like what you imagined? You wouldn't be the only one. From what I hear, a lot of people do. The only explanation I can think of is everyone has something that appeals to them, key things they're attracted to. In a book, the author shows you what they think the character looks like in their head. You can take that information and morph it into whatever you want. In the movies, you can't do that. You are told, visually, 'this is what the character looks like - DEAL'.

I'm guilty of it myself. Especially when it comes to other people's books. I take the details the author gives me, and my brain automatically fills in what it wants. For me, the most recent example is Roarke in the ...In Death series by J D Robb.

His physical statistics are as follows:

Height: 6 feet, 2 inches
Age: approximately 34 years old
Weight: 173 pounds
Eye color: blue
Hair color: black, long enough that he can and has tied it back

All of it works for me - except the hair. See, he's a billionaire businessman who owns a hell of a lot, slick and smooth. The longer hair doesn't work in my head. Every time I read (and since there's 30+ books in the series, w/ two published each year, there's a lot to read) I will actually skim over any reference to it. /badauthor

So, what about you find yourself with one image of a character even though its not accurate to the way they're described and/or shown?


Taryn Kincaid said...

Haven't read any of the J.D.Robb books, although everyone seems to love the Death series (haven't read practically any Nora, either)but, yes, you're right. The longish, tied-back hair wouldn't fit my in-head visual!

In movies...Robert Downey,Jr. doesn't fit my image of the book Sherlock Holmes. But, since I would watch Robert Downey, Jr. reading a phone book, I've turned the movie version into a completely new and different character in my head. Like Sherlock. But not Sherlock.

Sara Brookes said...

I've tried to watch that movie twice and I can't get through it. And I love Robert Downey, Jr (especially as Tony Stark). Yum.

But I'm right there with you, can't see it.

Annie Nicholas said...

This is one of the reason why I hate watching a movie after I've read the book. My imagination is so much better. LOL

One movie which surprised me, where the actor actually was more appealing than the book description, was Aargorn in Lord of the Rings.