Tuesday, July 11, 2017

How to make us believe characters are in love

Emma and I are watching an old TV show that currently has two sets of characters involved in romances. One couple convinces me they're in love; the other does not. My first thought was the actors in the second couple didn't have chemistry. Then I realized I was letting the writers off the hook by failing to ask why those characters didn't have the vague thing we call chemistry.

The answer is the writers didn't provide it. The first couple get to have fun together. The second couple, the unconvincing couple, never do. It's not enough to show that characters care for each other. You have to show why they care. For most of us, that means doing things that make us laugh together.