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Character discussion: Vila

 
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thunda



Joined: 27 Jun 2005
Posts: 1342
Location: Kaldor City

PostPosted: Thu Nov 12, 2015 7:46 am    Post subject: Character discussion: Vila Reply with quote

Some cultures are enamored with the ďthief.Ē The ďthiefĒ has a rich culture going back hundreds maybe even thousands of years in folk lore or books. Iím referring to the thief that doesnít kill, hurt or carry a weapon but rather uses his/her intellect and cunning to get what they want. What makes them likeable is that they donít take from the average person, they instead set their sights on some mythological creature or an overly rich bad person. I think that may be part of the appeal of Vila, that and the fact that you tend to sympathize with him right from the beginning. Heís caught between a rock and a hard place because he wouldnít last one week on Cygnus Alpha and heís not into the whole revolution thing. He chooses what he believes to be the safest option, which is going with Blake.

Vila may be the only character thatís honest about himself from the start. He likes to steal, is comfortable around criminals, is self centered, has a high survival instinct (I dislike the word coward), and canít be counted on. Unfortunately heís pressured by Blake, then Avon, then Tarrant into applying his talents for their needs. Is it any wonder he turned to drink?

Only one episode I question whether he was in character; Games when he killed a trooper. That doesnít seem like something he would do. Itís possible that he hardened up being in the company of killers and was afraid if he didnít become like them they might turn on him. That still doesnít explain the way he killed him. Why get him to turn around first? Avon did something similar in Assassin but that was because he wanted Benos to know who killed him. The rest of the crew kill from behind all the time.

In Animals I question Vilaís technical abilities. Heís a thief not a mechanic. What would he know about fixing the glycolene ballast channels? For that matter how would the crew know how to fix a spacecraft even with Oracís help? Are space ships in the future more user friendly?

Sidebar: In old American movies the ďgood guyĒ never shot anyone in the back. I believe this may have come from the code of the old west(American) where it was kind of okay to shoot a man, being that everyone was armed, but shooting him in the back was a definite no-no. The notorious outlaw Jesse James was killed from behind by Robert Ford, one of his gang seeking the reward. Ford was tried and sentenced to be hung all in one day until the governor intervened. Itís likely this code originated in Great Britain like most American customs.
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Ron



Joined: 14 Feb 2006
Posts: 3105
Location: A town, UK

PostPosted: Wed Mar 29, 2017 2:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Vila is not a bad lad. He's self centred in as far as he has a general healthy interest in self preservation. He'll do this more often and at smaller things than Avon - who is very self-centred but keeps it to himself and only voices things when more major decisions are involved. So it is habitual with Vila, who is well known to say "I don't like the sound of that much" when someone's enthusing about a change to his present safety through some more risky sounding course of action. However there are lots of times Vila is asked to go and help in some situation and he usually, if reluctantly, does. He's not cowardly at those times and (I can't remember the episode) once pretended to be intoxicated only to then help later. He helps his companions who he genuinely cares about in the background.
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thunda



Joined: 27 Jun 2005
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 31, 2017 4:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ron wrote:
Vila is not a bad lad. He's self centred in as far as he has a general healthy interest in self preservation. He'll do this more often and at smaller things than Avon - who is very self-centred but keeps it to himself and only voices things when more major decisions are involved. So it is habitual with Vila, who is well known to say "I don't like the sound of that much" when someone's enthusing about a change to his present safety through some more risky sounding course of action. However there are lots of times Vila is asked to go and help in some situation and he usually, if reluctantly, does. He's not cowardly at those times and (I can't remember the episode) once pretended to be intoxicated only to then help later. He helps his companions who he genuinely cares about in the background.


Stardrive. A great episode!

You made good points. Question; Is Vila a coward?
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Ron



Joined: 14 Feb 2006
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Location: A town, UK

PostPosted: Thu Apr 06, 2017 7:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

thunda wrote:
... Question; Is Vila a coward?

After watching Stardrive the general opinion is that he is a bit of a coward at this time. In the following episode however we find him saving Avon's life at the risk of his own. So I'd say that Vila is only sometimes a bit of a coward.
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thunda



Joined: 27 Jun 2005
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 06, 2017 8:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like to substitute myself in place of the characters and when I take Vilaís spot I ask Ďwould I act differently than him?í I donít think of myself as a coward but I canít honestly say that Iíd be enthusiastic about performing arguably terrorist activities against the most powerful empire in history with a bunch of criminals led by a megalomaniac. With a few exceptions, like Hostage where he gives Travis the teleport signal, I donít think he acted differently than an average person in his position would. Also, after Gan dies and Blake leaves he really has no one he can trust to watch his back. Can you really blame him for being overly cautious?
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Commissioner Sleer



Joined: 17 Feb 2015
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PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2017 4:15 am    Post subject: Re: Character discussion: Vila Reply with quote

thunda wrote:

In Animals I question Vilaís technical abilities. Heís a thief not a mechanic. What would he know about fixing the glycolene ballast channels? For that matter how would the crew know how to fix a spacecraft even with Oracís help? Are space ships in the future more user friendly?


I wonder if that scene in Animals is there to show us just how badly the crew is treating Vila at this point. We just saw him pretend to be drunk in Stardrive knowing he'd be the one sent to do the dangerous/dirty work.

And I say this as someone who isn't a big fan of Vila, but man, the way the crew treats him it's no wonder he drinks as much as he does. Where is he going to go? I think the turning point was when he chose to stay with the crew in City at the Edge of the World. He had a chance at some sort of safe, normal life. That might have seemed boring to him, but as their situation on The Liberator and then Scorpio grew worse, he came to regret that choice.
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