We can all think of characters that we'd like as sidekicks. But sometimes things aren't all about us, personally. There are people out there who just plain need those sidekicks more. (And some need to have those sidekicks inflicted on them more.) Here are ten fictional sidekicks that we want to pair up with ten actual people.
10. President Obama gets Chewbacca
This is a political one, which is why it's the all the way at the bottom of the list. Still, I think that, regardless of personal politics, the world would be better if all the President of the United States' speeches began or ended with someone coming up to the podium and saying, "Rrroooaaaarrrrrrrrrr!" Every single picture of the President would be an iconic, memorable, and funny one. You'd never have to worry about the President's safety, because no one messes with a Wookie. Plus Chewie's roars always make for funny dialog. "Roar!" "Yes, Michelle thought that about Putin, too." "Roar!" "No, it's butter pecan, today." "Roar!" "I keep telling them that it's my ship, but they still won't let me pilot Air Force One." "Roar!" "I know, right?"
9. Tim Burton gets Effie Trinket
I'd like these two to collaborate on a movie, and then watch the documentary of them making that movie. And then I would like to watch the court case that comes about as the result of the documentary. And then the documentary of that case. What I'm saying is this would be the ultimate clash of artistic sensibilities. They both like the same things; very blond hair, outlandish costumes, expensive scenery, very pale skin, and teenage girls who are special. Within those general themes, though, their personal tastes are so utterly different, with Burton favoring dark red and somber blacks and grays and Effie loving bright colors of every kind, that these two would be at each other's throats and ruining each other's projects forever. The only thing that would keep the from fighting to the death is Burton would want rapiers at midnight in a graveyard and Trinket insist on laser whips during a rave at Burning Man.
8. Julie Taymor gets Samwise Gamgee
Look, if anyone is the modern day equivalent to Frodo - set on a series of dangerous and impossible quests - it's the person who tried to get Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark to stages across America. Taymor is not a person who needs a fair-weather sidekick. She doesn't need a wise-cracking foil to play off her personality and lighten the mood when things get dark. She needs a sidekick who will walk with her into Mordor and lie down and die with her on Mount Doom. Check out her IMD page. It includes Across the Universe, a multi-hour Beatles opera, Titus, in which Anthony Hopkins appeared on posters with blue clay on his face for no reason, and Frida, a sort of moving-painting artistic biography of Frida Kahlo. This woman needs a Middle Earth level of devotion from a sidekick. Samwise is the only one for her.
7. Temple Grandin gets Spock
Temple Grandin started out as an engineer who came up with designs for more humane cattle herding, feeding, and slaughter facilities. Over time, she became known as a gifted lecturer on what it was like to be autistic, and ways to deal with autistic people according to their needs while integrating them into regular society. She's the inventor of a "squeeze machine" that allows people with autism to calm themselves with contact, and has recommended a lot of ways for people without autism to relate to, and understand, people with different minds. She's written about autism, animal behavior, animal welfare, and social relationships seen from someone with a less emotional and more strictly logical perspective. So she's exploring societies filled with "aliens" from a perspective light on emotion and heavy on logic. She needs a Spock. They'd be perfect together. (In her memoirs, Grandin has specifically talked about her love of Star Trek and her identification with Spock, so it's not just me who thinks this.)
6. Annie Leibovitz gets Jimmy Olsen
Good news, Annie! Somebody's going to be your best pal! It's a natural match, although there will be some friction. Jimmy Olsen tends to work more in news and Annie seems to work with more celebrities. Then again, if the guy wants to ever not be an intern rushing to get coffee, he needs to get some Rolling Stone covers under his belt. Meanwhile, Annie Leibovitz, and I say this as someone who has no business commenting on the artistic merits of photography, needs someone to let her know that yet another black and white photograph of a star staring into the distance with a frown on their face is not going to cut it. Both need to be shaken out of their routines a bit, and I think they'll be good for each other.
5. The Saturday Night Live Women get All the Robins
A lot of the alumni of Saturday Night Live have been doing a lot of crazy cool stuff in the last half decade, but they'd be able to do more of it if they had the support of another group of people; the collective Robins. I would like to pair them each with their perfect Robin. Amy Poehler would be with the feisty blonde Stephanie Brown. Tina Fey would be with the more serious-minded Tim Drake, as they both occasionally adopt thinly-veiled alternate identities that wear glasses. Kristen Wiig would be with Jason Todd, since they both curse a lot. Maya Rudolph would be with Dick Grayson, since they both show up in everyone else's books, shows, and movies, and everyone seems to like them. And, finally, Rachel Dratch would get the gleefully homicidal Damian. (I'm not entirely sure why I paired her with Damian. I just have a gut feeling that if Rachel Dratch really wanted to kill someone, she'd do a super efficient job of it. Also, both Rachel Dratch and Damian are tiny, tiny people. Seriously, she's, like, five feet tall and he's belt-high to Batman. They could share clothes.) Imagine the kind of work these ladies could get done if they got the backing they needed. (And Carrie Kelly, the alternate-dimension Robin, would be available for extra support to whoever needs her.)
4. Mary Roach gets Gromit
Mary Roach is a science writer who has investigated what happens to dead bodies, probed (literally) the science of sex, investigated paranormal research, and, oh yes, gone on one of those parabolic flights where they let you zoom around in simulated zero gravity for her book about the practical side of space travel. She did the zero gravity thing while on the plane with students who were testing out their inventions for NASA. Don't tell me that that's not an episode of Wallace and Gromit waiting to happen. While I know nothing about her personal life, I like to think that while she's checking all these things out, she's barreling Wallace-style, into disaster. Meanwhile, she has a loyal sidekick like Gromit to always keep her from going over the precipice.
3. Neil deGrasse Tyson gets John Watson
It's true, Neil deGrasse Tyson does a lot of his own writing, about astrophysics and such, and that's all well and good, but who is writing about the real-life adventures of Neil deGrasse Tyson? No one, that's who! Doctor Watson, you're needed! Now I'm not saying that they would necessarily have to solve crimes together to make the memoirs worth reading - I would happily read about The Adventure of Going Out for Astronaut Ice Cream - but if they happen to notice a crime nearby, and if they have a spare weekend, it would seem like a waste not to go out and try to see if they can solve it.
2. Joss Whedon gets Willow Rosenburg
"Um, Power That Is? I've got just a few questions for you. And if you don't answer them, I'll rip your skin off, since apparently you're the one who decides I do that to people." Some would say that Dollhouse reflected Joss Whedon's thoughts about playing god with characters' lives throughout his first two TV shows. I would say that Willow Rosenburg, whose fashion sense, magical ability, and sexuality evolve throughout the many seasons of Buffy, might have a few thoughts of her own. I like the idea of a creator having to live with their own creations Frankenstein-style, and the fact that the creation is an all-powerful witch just makes the whole thing more delicious. While I'd like to see the bitter recriminations and the weird Joss-y word play coming from both sides, it would be great if Joss eventually got on her good side. (I imagine this could be done by writing a few characters that died tragically in the Buffy series back to life.) If you thought the effects in the Avengers movie were good, you will absolutely love the sequel. They'll be magical. And maybe the Scarlet Witch will join the crew.
1. Alan Moore gets C3PO
"And may I inquire as to what you are writing now, Sir? . . . . Goodness gracious me!"