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Quackcast 623 - Arrogance vs humility

Ozoneocean at 12:00AM, Feb. 21, 2023

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Arrogance is a fun subject. Related to cockiness, hubris, assertiveness, self confidence and pride.
It's a fantastic trait for a villain and it's really fun to write. Heroes are often arrogant too when they need to learn a lesson in order to become a better person, it's super common in stories. We're all a bit arrogant ourselves about our skills, our knowledge, where we come from, what we look like etc. It's a universal trait! It often strikes when we think we know better or know it all on a subject: the human tendency to over-reach and to speak for others.

The famous Dunning-Kruger effect is a type of arrogance: basically, when you know a little about a subject you tend to imagine you know a LOT more about it that you do. Whereas when you know a lot about a subject you know enough to know that you also know that there's so much more that you DON'T know. Beginners think they know much more than they do and experts tend to know more than they realise.
But people mistakenly think that Dunning-Kruger only affects stupid people, when in reality it affects everyone all the time. No matter how clever you are there are a million things you are not an expert in and can never be, and you will overestimate your knowledge without even knowing it. I'm doing that right now with Dunning-Kruger :)
A good word for these people comes from Greece: Sophomore. In English it means a beginner, but in Greek it means “wise fool”; a person who knows just enough to think they're wise on a subject but not enough to know the limitations of their knowledge.

So who are your fave arrogant characters? Rick from Rick and Morty is surely one. He can back up his arrogance with actual knowledge and skill though, which just makes him an a***hole. Scaramouche from the Commedia Dell'arte is a famous example, so is Blackadder who's some what based on him. One of my favourite arrogant characters was also from Blackadder; Lord Flashheart and also Captain Flashheart (both played by Rick Mayall). They're hilarious in their overblown image of themselves. Arrogance can add charm and comedy to a character or it can make them insufferable and repellent. Do you like arrogant characters? What about arrogant people?

This week Gunwallace has given us the theme to Kirth Space Bounty Hunter - Almost sounding like a space-age version of traditional Chinese music, this is a fascinating piece. It’s upbeat and yet slightly mournful and quite evocative. All in all a joy to listen to.

Topics and shownotes

Featured comic:
Simple Complications -

Featured music:
Kirth Space Bounty Hunter - - by RobertRVeith, rated T.

Special thanks to:
Gunwallace -
Ozoneocean -
Banes -
Tantz Aerine -

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Ozoneocean at 7:29PM, Feb. 21, 2023

@EssayBee the version from Army of Darkness is my fave <3

Ozoneocean at 7:28PM, Feb. 21, 2023

@J_Scarbrough TRUE!

Ozoneocean at 5:12PM, Feb. 21, 2023

@Marorossi - I didn't think to look at it like that. That makes for some interesting writing and story dynamaics

J_Scarbrough at 9:02AM, Feb. 21, 2023

No one can host webcomics on the internet like Quackston!

EssayBee at 6:43AM, Feb. 21, 2023

Ash Williams. The greatest. Period.

marcorossi at 2:51AM, Feb. 21, 2023

There is also a different case when a character is just boastful, licke Gaston in Beauty and the Beast, where the problem is just that the character is peacocking too much and usually is linked to sexually showing off; the same for old shojo manga villainesses who generally are super boastful. Thy are annoying because they are trying to sexually outcompete everyone else, even if this is not spelled out explicitly.

marcorossi at 2:47AM, Feb. 21, 2023

Arrogance (and also stupidity) are a weird character "trait" because they rely on a difference between the point of view of the character VS the point of view of the author. For example Sherlock Holmes usually makes nonsensical deductions, however the author is on his side, whereas the reader doesn't know, so Holmes turns out to be very intelligent; in a stupid or arrogant character we will have the character believe one thing whereas the author and the reader know that thing not to be true (hence s/he looks stupid/arrogant); sometimes the character believes one thing, the reader is also lead to believe the same thing, but it turns out to be wrong, but in this case there is no stupid/arrogant perception; very rarely the character believes one thing, the reader is lead to believe another, but in the end the character turns out to be right.

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