Saturday, March 31, 2012

Ugly Heroes... ever read one and suddenly found him HOT?!

We're all fairly familiar with the ugly/plain heroine aren't we?

We've got Bridget Jones (slightly chubby, socially awkward), Ugly Betty (dorky hair and braces), and  Mary Balogh's "One of the Slightly" series also has an ugly heroine. In fact, my latest Heroine Jinx (in Magical Redemption) is definitely not conventionally attractive...

Danny Quinn
However! What I'm interested in today is the unconventional looking hero. I am absolutely taken with the TV series Primeval, it's been around for a while, but we've only recently discovered it. I'm into series three, and they have replaced one of the main characters Nick Cutter (Douglass Henshall) with Danny Quinn (Jason Flemyng). Admittedly initially I didn't find the character of Nick Cutter at all attractive (physically or personality wise). Yet I grew to like him. Now he has been killed off, and the directors have introduced Danny Quinn, and most people will agree he isn't your conventionally attractive actor.
So I'm interested to see if my opinion of him changes throughout the series. Can his personality win me over, and will he grow on me? (hopefully in a good way and not like a fungus).

Douglass Henshall
In all my novels, my heroes are what I would call universally attractive. Their appearance, personality and body type fit with the general concensus of what makes someone attractive. (Having said that, a friend infomed me the other day that she didn't find Lucian particularly attractive *gasp*)
Anyway, my question is this, have you ever read a character who you initially found revolting, but then grew on you?

I read a book some time ago, in which this was the case. For the life of me I can't remember which book it was. Which is a shame. I remember being completely revolted by the hero but by the end couldn't put it down and thought he was was Adonis, (just without the good looks).

So what makes ugly to you?

Here's my ugly list. These are the three points that I think really affect my judgement on what physically attractive is. You'll notice my 'ugly list'  doesn't contain things like; weight, facial symmetry, missing limbs etc, because I think characters can still be appealing in the romantic sense with them. The points on my ugly list are pretty much all rectifiable - and thus, having these traits is less attractive, because you don't need to have them.

1. Diseased and damaged skin - this is fairly undestandable, I think healthy skin is fairly symbolic in our culture of good health and generally our heroes are healthy inorder to be heroic.

2. Rotten teeth, bad breath - again, healthy teeth/breath symbolise healthy everything else.

3. Lank greasy hair - I think this reflects the heroes ability to care for themselves as well as care for others. If their hair/body is disgustingly unkempt and particularly dirty, then they clearly are unable to look after themselves, and therefore how can they rescue/look after/ help the heroine?

Do you think you could grow to like a hero  had had halitosis and rotten broken teeth? (I'm talking about 'like' in the romantic heroic sense not about 'like' because he's a "nice guy despite his unfortunate acne" kind of way).

I would love to know if you've read of a male character (with at least one of the ugly points) and you still managed to find him attractive in the romance stakes.

Anyway, have a great week.


  1. Can I remember specifics...not really, but I do know that I have read books or watched TV/movies where I find this to be totally true. Certainly physical appearance can affect how I feel about characters but I try to make my judgments based on their personality and actions instead.

  2. Yes, I think that's the way to go. :)