"Still waters run deep..."
My grandmother always cautioned our family to be mindful of quiet people. Appearances can be decieving. Those reserved souls that don't say much, that keep to themselves, aren't to be trifled with. In fact, those quiet folks are the one's to look out for.
Through the years, there have been some iconic fictional characters and cult classic films that echo her wisdom. Here's a list of five fictional figures who proved my grandma right-- don't mess with the quiet ones!
The Equalizer's Robert McCall
Denzel Washington's character is the epitome of, "Don't start nothing, won't be nothing." All Robert McCall wanted to do was sit in the diner, read his books, and enjoy some solitude, but when violence rears its ugly head in his community and impacts his small circle of friendly acquaintances, he puts his special set of skills from his mysterious (and deadly) background to use to defend the helpless.
The Equalizer, down to the poster tagline "What do you see when you look at me?" is a prime example of why it's important not to underestimate others, particularly on appearance alone. McCall tried to be polite and accomodating, even when face to face with organized crime leaders, but no one could take the hint, much to their detriment. He took out an entire organization in the most mundane of places ( a diner and a hardware store).
2. Bryan Mills from Taken
McCall isn't the only quiet man with a particular set of skills. Liam Neeson's Bryan Mills leveled an entire trafficking ring when his daughter was abducted. He tried to play nice with a bit of negotiation, but if you've seen the 2008 film, you know how that went down.
Mills raced against impossible odds, doing investigative work, a little bit of torture, and a lot of bloodshed that, like McCall's character would create two more ocassions of chaos and retribution in the sequels that followed the first film. Quiet people are a force to be reckoned with.
3. John Wick
Keanu Reeves' titular character is a retired assassin and a grieving widow. A mobster asks for trouble when he steals Wick's car and unalives his puppy, the last gift from his wife. Such a heartless act is enough to unleash anyone's fury, but Wick delivers legendary retaliation, all while saying very little. The stoic and undeniably lethal figure is yet another example of why it isn't a good idea to bother the silent types. If you are a fan of John Wick, be on the lookout for the upcoming animated series spinoff.
4. Jason Bourne from the Bourne Identity
Jason was on a quest for self-discovery, but even after he recovered from amnesia and learned about his dark past, all he wanted to do was settle down with his newfound love and start over.
Of course things are never quite so easy. Reticent and reluctant, Bourne was forced out of retirement over the course of several films where people just refuse to leave him be.
5. Leroy Green from The Last Dragon
Hear me out on this one. Not all lethal, quiet people are sullen middle-aged men with dark secrets and shady pasts. Some are like Taimak's Leroy Green, aka Bruce Leeroy. All he wanted was to reach the final level of martial art training and run his school as a legitimate expert. But the Shogun of Harlem couldn't take the hint. The wannabe master provoked the mild martial artist by harassing his students and terrorizing his family's business. When you play the bully and disturb the peace, you're asking for trouble.
I saw a claim floating out on social media boasting that Leroy is the actual first super Saiyan. I'm not sure how you Dragon Ball Z fans feel about that, but Leroy got that golden glow and Sho'nuff, the Shogun of Harlem had to go, along with the bumbling but brtual crime boss Eddie Arkadian. When you mess with the quiet ones, even the quirky, mild mannered ones, they are very thorough peacekeepers, removing any and all threats.
Who are your favorite silent but deadly fictional characters? Let's keep the list going in the comments.
About Montrez, Contributor
Montrez is a sci-fi and fantasy author, a freelance editor, and blogger passionate about celebrating and amplifying BIPOC and indie voices in the bookish and blerd community.
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