Heroes: Alpha, Beta, and…Gamma? Back to Blog
I think we’re all pretty much familiar with the alpha hero. The tough-as-nails, dominant male who can kick ass and make the heroine fall hard for him all in one romance novel. Sure, the guy can be arrogant, but hey, he’s an alpha, so that pretty much goes with the package.
Then there’s the beta hero. You don’t usually hear about this guy as much in the pages of a romance novel. The beta, well, he’s the guy you hope to marry in real life. Dependable. Steady. You know, a Nice Guy. (The kind you looked for after you were done playing with the bad boy.) Although, um, just as an aside, I’ve had a beta hero story dancing in my head forever!
But, ahem, back to my post…
It has come to my attention (thanks to some info on one of my groups), that I’ve been missing out on one more hero. Because, you see, we have alphas, we have betas, and, um, I guess we also have gammas.
A gamma guy. I didn’t even know there was such a beast. Color me clueless.
So, after I heard the term gamma in reference to a hero, I had to do some googling. Here’s what I found: The gamma is a combo of the alpha and beta. He’s got all the mad, bad alpha characteristics like being super strong and aggressive and being the guy you turn to if hell is at your door, but he’s not super arrogant. He cares about others (and not just the heroine; the gamma seems to have strong ties to friends and his family). Folks may think the gamma is the Big Bad, but usually his reputation is undeserved and if you look past the surface, you find a guy who was just misunderstood.
While doing my handy-dandy research, I discovered that some folks think Julie Garwood’s historical heroes were gammas. See, I’d just thought of them as alphas, but, now that I consider it more, I guess those heroes did show a deeper sensitivity.
But what do you think about this whole idea of a gamma hero in romance novels? Have you seen any good gammas in books or movies that you want to share?Tweet It