Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Genre Character of the Week: Caleb Colton

One of my favourite types of horror story is the one in which our main character is becoming the monster, rather than attempting to capture or destroy it. Most famously done in The Strange Case of Doctor Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson, the concept has been adapted and changed to cover werewolves, aliens and vampires. Which brings us to this weeks character, Caleb Colton (pictured left), from the film Near Dark.

What I like best about Caleb (as opposed to say Michael from The Lost Boys), is that he doesn't start the film as a jaded young man, but instead is simply a kid attempting to talk to a girl. Unfortunately, this girl appears to crazy, talking about the night and sort of ignoring the boy until she asks for a ride home.

The meat of the film occurs after (mild spoiler here), Caleb is transformed into a vampire (a word which is never mentioned in the film) and tries his best to adapt to his new life without ruining his moral code. Adrian Pasdar, the actor who played Caleb does an incredible job of portraying the internal strife of a man in a terrible new world, bringing the character much more depth than I was expecting in a horror film - it is characters like this by the way, which keep me interested in the genre.

In the end, the character of Caleb works for me as the kind of person I hope I would be in a terrible situation, one who does his best, but sticks to what he knows is right.

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