When you think of the lover archetype you probably don’t think about Heath Ledger’s Joker. In fact, after watching The Dark Knight Rises, you’d think he’d be the farthest from a lover but what some people may not realise is that the lover archetype is not always about a Shakespeare in Love type character.
The lover archetype can be broadened to include professional relationships as opposed to strictly being associated with physical romantic partners. The lover is someone who hates to be alone and thrives when they are with people, especially when they make lasting connections. The Joker’s relationship with Batman, for example, is codependent, arguably neither can exist without the other. Can you now see why the Joker falls into this category?
The Joker is a brilliant use of this archetype as it highlights issues with codependent relationships in a way that a traditional romantic narrative might hide behind extravagant gestures and a society that arguably rates being in a relationship above being single. It’s an out of the box way of thinking and is why the character is so successful.
The Lover Archetype key characteristics:
- Motivation: Love, relationships and being happy.
- Greatest fear: Being alone or without intimate connections. Being unloved or unwanted.
- Weakness: Their desire to be loved often runs the risk of this type of character losing their identity as they are often trying to please or entertain others.
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