Sunday, January 20, 2013

Return to the Kevin Williamson School of Character Naming

Back in 2010, I wrote a post titled “The Kevin Williamson School of Character Naming,” in which I talked about how the scribe behind Scream and Dawson’s Creek has a few peculiar tics when it comes to deciding what he’s going to call his characters. Basically, he populates his works with an unusually high number of characters whose last names end in -er (Casey Becker, Joey Potter, etc.), and to a lesser extend characters whose last names end in -s (Randy Meeks, Gale Weathers), whose names end in -y (Tatum Riley, Dawson Leery) or who have a boy’s name despite being female (Andie McPhee, Sam Price). It’s just something he does.

So when I found out that Williamson had written the new Kevin Bacon series The Following, I had to look at the name of the characters. So what have we got? Kevin Bacon plays Agent Ryan Hardy, Natalie Zea plays Claire Matthews, Annie Parisse plays Debra Parker and Maggie Grace plays Sarah Fuller. So he’s still doing it.

This proves nothing, of course, and a lot of writers probably have similar habits, but I’m somehow just fascinated to look a given person’s body of written work and say, “Oh, see? He does this one particular thing again and again.” I wonder if this is something other Kevin Williamson fans have picked up on.

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