Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Genre Character of the Week: Chris Weiner

Back in May I was lent a copy of the Dead Gentlemen Productions film The Gamers by a friend and was treated to a delightful little story about role-playing games and why you would never want a realistic look at how rpg characters actually act in their various worlds.

Following up on my viewing of the film, and noting my love of the horror genre, my friend then lent me two of the earliest films made by the production company: Demon Hunters, and Demon Hunters: Dead Camper Lake (Luckily both contained on the same DVD).

The two films focus on a young man (and our genre character of the week) Chris Wiener.

Played by Steve Wolbrecht, Chris is an accounting student at a small university who gets swept up the battle between an Earthwalker demon called Duamerthrax the Indestructible and The Brotherhood of the Celestial Torch.  What’s great about Chris is that he’s basically a punch line in the first film, a character designed to ask questions so the other characters can give expository dialogue about their backgrounds, but in the second film, he actually gets to shine as a full fledged character (with a story-arc and everything!)

Although the original Demon Hunters is the weaker of the two films, it does an awful lot of set up, and many of the jokes started in the first film pay off in the second.  My favourite bit (trying to spoil as little as possible)? How the end credits of the first film play out in the second film.

Although there were a lot of great characters in both films (Demon Hunters Gabriel, Silent Jim, and Tree were standouts for me), I love how Chris moves from being a one line character (his catchphrase is to stare directly in the camera and exclaim “Damn!”), through some pretty hilarious training sequences and ends up as a pretty functional Demon Hunter in his own right.

How can you not love the underdog?

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