On appeal: Are there characters whose situations prefigure various fates that might await the hero?
Why it was added: I really like this idea. It’s a great way to subtly add power to your story.
How do the checklist movies answer this question?
- Alien: Yes, she’s afraid of getting killed like the others, afraid of becoming Ash.
- An Education: Very much so. She’s terrified of becoming her teachers, her parents, and Helen the moll.
- The Babadook: The dog for the boy, etc.
- Blazing Saddles: We see others getting hanged, and the previous sheriff getting killed.
- Blue Velvet: Yes, he doesn’t want to end up like his father, he’s afraid he’ll end up like Frank.
- The Bourne Identity: Yes, the other Treadstone assassins for Jason. The dead landlady for Marie.
- Bridesmaids: The rest of the bridal party provide examples of her concerns: one is unhappily married, one married naively, one is a trophy wife, etc.
- Casablanca: Yes, Rick is worried that he’s as bad as Ugarte, or as corrupt as Renault. He also sees that he’ll never be as good as Victor.
- Donnie Brasco: Yes, Lefty, the other inept undercover Fed, Bruno Kirby’s character that gets killed for being sloppy. etc.
- Do the Right Thing: Will Mookie end up like Da Mayor? Like Sal? Should he be more like Buggin’ Out? Like his sister?
- The Fighter: Dicky is a cautionary tale for Micky.
- The Fugitive: Gerard catches and kills the other fugitive.
- Groundhog Day: Phil keeps running into people he could be: Nice Rita, dopey Larry covering the swallows at Capistrano eight years in a row, the drunks at the bar, etc. How to Train Your Dragon: Lots of people with missing body parts, etc.
- In a Lonely Place: Yes, Laurel is afraid she’ll be killed like the girl, Dix is afraid he’ll end up like the old drunk.
- Iron Man: Co-inventor who dies shows him that he will eventually have to choose, Stane represents what he’s afraid he’ll become.
- Raising Arizona: Her sister and brother-in-law represent his worst fears of becoming a dad, and the brothers represent his worst fears of returning to a life of crime.
- Rushmore: Not really. Max is one-of-a-kind.
- The Shining: Yes. The previous caretaker and his family.
- Sideways: He fears he can’t pursue love without becoming Jack.
- Silence of the Lambs: Lecter, Chilton and Crawford all share her interest in criminal psychology. Which will she end up like?
- Star Wars: Not really. Again, these were cut (contrasting Luke with his friends who didn’t leave and his friend who did leave.) Han isn’t really a parallel character because he and Luke haven’t faced the same choices.
- Sunset Boulevard: Yes, many: the monkey, John the Baptist, Max.
The verdict: Have you found this question useful? Should I save it? Move it to concept? Move it to theme? Would it need to be rephrased?