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Forums » Smalltalk » Canon Characters & what they are

I meant to ask this awhile back but I think I forgot...

Has there been some sort of shift going on as to what a "canon character" is? I'm not really much in fandom stuff, so all I've got is what I pick up from others. ^^;

I'm used to "canon characters" being characters that are actually part of the source material, appearing in whatever books, shows, movies, comics, etc. They are part of the actual canon of the story.

The way I've seen folks talk about them at times, it hasn't seemed like that was what they were talking about. I've even seen the term "canon OC," which... would make sense in very few contexts, I think? But it seems like some folks are starting to refer to fan OCs as "canon characters" or "canon OCs," which I'm guessing is maybe supposed to mean "original character that references a canon?"

Or am I just totally confused and mixed up? ^^;
I haven't played fandom rp in a long time, but I believe that it refers to OCs that either sit the source materials, or otherwise background characters who do not have strict personality or background.
I might be wrong.
When I play a canon character I usually refer to them by their name, like Deadpool or Moon Knight.

But, when I play characters of my own creation that are set in a particular fandom I usually refer to them as "fandom" + OC, like Star Wars OC or Marvel OC. Let's face facts, I'm sure I have an entire clan of Mandaloran OCs.

Does that make sense? I'm not sure if I answered the question.
In my mind, "canon character" is as it sounds: a character that exists as canon in a fandom.
I call OCs based on fandoms "fan-characters", which is what I'm used to seeing and what makes the most sense to me. Or, if I want to be more specific about what kind of fan-character it is, I'd say "[fandom name here] OC" (as in "Legend of Zelda OC" or "Pokémon OC" etc.)
"Canon OC" makes no sense to me as in my mind it sounds very contradictory, but I'd be most likely to guess it means something like the way I'd use "fan-character".
Zelphyr wrote:
I'm used to "canon characters" being characters that are actually part of the source material, appearing in whatever books, shows, movies, comics, etc. They are part of the actual canon of the story.

Yes, this is how I interpret it as well. If I use a movie, TV show, or book as a setting and make a fictional character in that world (fandom), then that character is an 'OC'. That character may interact with 'canon characters' of the fandom in my stories. Example is I have a police woman character that has a purely fictional name and role based on the FBI TV show. Characters of the show are 'canon', while mine is an 'OC'.
I've always interpreted 'canon' to mean characters from the core media and 'fandom' to mean original characters within the media setting but of the player's own creation.

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