origins - hawk & moth
So, here’s the thing about Hawk. She was nowhere in the original draft of ideas for The Beacon, and I have no idea at which point she decided she needed to be there. Given that I have, in the past, made completely spur of the moment main cast additions in my writings simply because I wanted new characters, it could have been as late as the end of writing episode five that I decided to add her in. And I still can’t remember why.
But I know what I wanted to do with her once she was there. I wanted Hawk to act as a sort of foil to Bee. Bee is socially anxious and somewhat of a shut-in while Hawk is hyper involved in, it seems like, every activity at her school. Both of them are idealistic, wanting to do what’s best for others, and both of them tend to take their cues on how to handle this based on media tropes. But while Bee tends to hold back, for fear of upsetting the people she’s asking to help, Hawk tends to barrel forward for the sake of those she’s trying to protect.
As such, the whole Bee-Hawk relationship came to represent two sides of the conflict in one of the major questions I wanted to explore this season: What do we owe to those who are in need. While Hawk is a highly intelligent, motivated, and otherwise talented person, she’s also somewhat naive, particularly in regards to human nature, which lends itself to the fact that she’s idealistic to a fault. On some level, Hawk still believes you can break the world down into heroes and villains, and that if you find the right key, those heroes will always do the right thing - something that ultimately leads to her downfall this season.
Wow, that got a little dark, didn’t it?
Let’s talk about Moth instead!
Moth is...to be honest, still a bit of a mystery to me. I think I originally conceived her just because of the costume problem - the problem being that Hawk was going to need one if she was going to play the role of a full-fledged superhero, and probably the most convenient way for her to get one was if she was already in good with an accomplished cosplayer. Even her codename was meant to reference this aspect of her character, since, in my mind, moths are the fashionistas with their elegant wings and ruffled coats.
But I also think that’s not necessarily a bad thing from a writing standpoint. To me, Moth is kind of like the wild card. (Insert Charlie from IASIP gif here). Part of what keeps me interested in any project is if some of it can still be discovered. For example, even though I know what I want the last scene of the series to be, I don’t know most of what happens in season three. It’s just all that potential that gets me excited to put pen to paper and see what comes out. And Moth is just this big space of potentiality. There’s no telling what she’s going to do in the end, which, honestly, makes her one of my favorite characters.
Also, I love that her relation to the show has led to cast and fans sending pictures of moths to our twitter. Please, never stop sending moth pics.
Despite coming across as slightly more secondary in the first season, I still think of them somewhat as the alpha duo here. I think Hawk is the character who is most attuned and skilled with her powers. I think Moth is the one most skilled in anything outside of magical powers. And I think the two of them together are the most solid relationship in the series at this point.
Shame we had to go and nerf half the dream team.