Hello, All You Characters!


Hi, I’m an INFP!

I found this out years ago when my sister made me take the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) test, but I didn’t really think much of it. That Myers-Briggs stuff is just a bunch of made-up psychobabble hokum, right? No written test can tell me who I am, by golly!

Which is exactly the sort of thing an INFP would say, by the way.

One day I stumbled upon a post that listed famous fictional characters with my personality type. Maybe I was feeling a bit down and needed the encouragement, but I really liked the list. So I quickly mocked up a little poster with those characters on it and plastered it on my Facebook and Tumblr. It took off and got shared all over the place.

I was super proud.

I was also super wrong.

I started looking up other personality types to make posters for my friends, and I quickly learned that everybody out there had different ideas as to which characters were which personality types. It was basically a fandom free-for-all, anarchy in blogging form, with a ferocity of debate usually reserved for an election year. I couldn’t make sense of any of it, and I quickly despaired of ever finding solid examples of the personality types for my friends’ charts.

So I plunged in and started learning more so I could make my own decisions.

And here’s what I learned:

Lots of people get into MBTI for the same reasons others don’t–stereotypes. INFPs are supposed to be the spacey sweethearts, ENTJs are ruthless warlords who must be stopped (especially if they’re women), ISTPs are stealthy ninjas with smart-ass wisecracks, ESFJs are bubbly homemakers who just. won’t. stop. talking.

Okay, I am a spacey sweetheart, but that’s not all of me.

Myers-Briggs really takes off when you learn the cognitive functions associated with each type. It’s then that you learn that MBTI types are about how your brain works–how you process information, make decisions, interact with people, and direct your feelings. It’s not a horoscope that vaguely predicts your life trajectory. It’s not an unforgiving structure that tells you exactly who you are or must be.

It’s a tool to help you learn more about yourself and the people you meet in life. As an INFP, I’m all about learning more about my true self and helping others to do the same. So I started blogging and identifying fictional characters by their types, hoping to shed some sane light on the situation.

I got a LOT of it wrong at first, until I properly learned my functions. I also started out on Tumblr, and eventually started to feel like I was too old to be there. So here I am on WordPress, re-launching Heroes & Villains in hopes of finding a new audience.

I’m still aiming for one day creating fictional character posters for all 16 personality types, but not until I feel I’ve correctly identified enough fictional characters to fill out the rosters. Meanwhile, Heroes & Villains will feature themed months and weeks, combing through the characters of different fictional properties to learn what makes them tick. And smile. And cry. And fight. And hope.

And all that good stuff.

Welcome to Heroes & Villains of MBTI.


One thought on “Hello, All You Characters!

  1. Not sure if my last comment posted, so this might be a duplicate – anyway, we used to exchanges message on tumblr a bit (thebarnardstokesbusiness). Seems like you finally made it to LA, and I hope life is treating you well, sir! Cheers, Reynaldi

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