Thursday, 4 March 2010

Character profiles: Shanran Dak

Name: Shanran Dak
Age: 45

Captain, Martian Freighter Crazy Horse

Personality: Grumpy, stubborn, smart as hell and very determined.

Misc: The captain of the MF Crazy Horse isn't always an easy man to get along with. He's conscientious about completing a job, but always wants to do it on his own terms. Because of this he doesn't get on well with people in authority, which can occasionally get him into hat water, and isn't shy of telling people exactly what he thinks.
If he's given options he will always look for the one which will benefit his ship and crew the most.
He trusts very few people, and even among his own crew there are few that he completely trusts all the time. Jackson Brown is probably his closest friend, although he has also been known to enjoy a drink with Dr Rivers and John Park. His loudly professed opinion of women in general is that they cause trouble, but despite this he carries two women on his crew, perhaps suggesting that his bark is worse than his bite?
“Major, what the hell are these orders about?” Dak snapped, taking the seat as Macintyre closed the office door and leaned against the doorframe. “You want me to carry passengers on our next run? Are you out of your fricking mind? You know we don’t have the facilities to do that, not to mention the inclination.”


“He won’t change his mind,” Macintyre stated, folding his arms as he watched John finish transmitting Keller’s schematics to the stranded ship.

“How do you know unless you try?” Keller countered.

Macintyre laughed and shook his head. “I’ve been working with Dak for long enough now to know a hopeless cause when I see one. Even if he thought he was wrong – which he doesn’t by the way – then you’d be hard pushed to get him to admit it. Trying to change his mind’s nearly impossible.”

Inspiration & character creation: It was fun coming up with the character of the captain. He started out as an idea for a first officer on a much more classy ship than Crazy Horse - think more Enterprise than Serenity. Something wasn't quite right about him in that position though, so Macintyre became first officer and Dak got a promotion.
His character was partly inspired by Joss Wheden's Firefly character Malcolm Reynolds, but I also liked the idea of having a grumpy captain and the challenge of trying to make him sympathetic and likeable. I hope I've succeeded!
His ethnicity is a mystery, even to me, but his name seemed more Indian-feeling than western. I'm probably going to get complaints from Indian people about that now, so sorry in advance, but if you think I'm wrong just remember that this is the 22nd century and Keller is a made-up western name...

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