No one likes incompetent characters, right? We like them to be smart, to figure things out without being told. Thing is, not everyone has a glowing IQ - which isn't a bad thing. It might make for a great story!
The Fool - A character who seems oblivious (or is) to everything that happens around him, but manages to complete the journey, win the heart of the maiden, or solve the crime with dumb luck.
They are typically ignorant of the world's evils and are naturally good hearted. Karma abounds with them.
The plot of Forrest Gump (pictured above) pretty much revolves around this definition. Lovable, isn't he?
The Fool is a timeless trope, but a difficult one to pull off. The Golden Goose is the earliest example I can think of. The guy pretty much has it made, and yet this story has withstood the test of time and has been retold more times than can be counted. Not bad ... for a "Simpleton."
Got a crime to solve? No problem! Even a clueless individual can be lucky enough to join the police force (and become an inspector). Rest assured, they'll find the thief, even if their lead turns out to be A Shot In the Dark.
Some Fools may come across as obnoxious while others may surprise us by helping to save the day ...
They could be anywhere in the world, be it stuck on a deserted island or wandering the plains of Russia.
The Fool can play a part of almost any story, across culture, race, and/or gender. Yes, the examples above are guys, but there are girl examples too, like Mihoshi from the Tenchi universe. They're just harder to find.
And in the end, we end up loving them anyway.
What other Fools can you think of? Do you have one in your story? Do you prefer salmon or trout?
I'm David, and, you know ... for kids!