Step 1 for powering up your special move: Strike a pose! Do you have a good special move? No? That’s because you can’t pose. No posing skills and we can’t take a great picture of you! But not to worry, as although we may not have your back, we have gathered some of the finest posers from geek history to show you how it’s done.
Get ready to freeze-frame for victory. It’s our Top 10 Posing Characters.
10) Charlie’s Angels
It’s iconic – Really, it had to get into this list. We’re putting it in tenth, only because it’s not necessarily the most interesting of poses on this list, but it definitely deserved to get a nod. Charlie’s Angels is arguably one of the forerunners of having poses, especially when it comes to film and TV – Which is sadly a lot harder to find good poses in, than any other medium, which is why this list gets more video games and anime!
Still, Charlie’s Angels is such an iconic image, of the three ladies – One lady in the middle, usually holding something up, like a radio. This is followed by a lady either side, where they are both holding out a gun, or they’re doing some form of martial art looking post in opposite directions. It’s such an iconic, original pose, which really brought iconic poses into the mainstream – And there are many variations.
9) Tracer – Overwatch
Included for the sake of the sheer controversy that surrounded Tracer’s victory pose and the changes that were made. The time-shifter was brought to task for the designer’s choice of an over-sexualised and out of character victory pose, with a coquettish over-the-shoulder glance that show one of her ~ahem~ “assets”.
Now, for a full study, I recommend (as I often do) this video by Extra Credits that addresses the issue from the perspective of the designer and the character, they also address the sexualisation of Widowmaker as an in-character working example. The new pose is a lot more playful and dynamic, and therefore more in keeping with who Tracer is. Not a particularly interesting pose in its’ own right, but the “conversation” (blazing row) did raise some interesting questions about animation.
8) Luigi – Smash Bros Brawl
Luigi… How is victory best exemplified by lying on your rotund belly and rocking backwards and forwards? It’s not quite the triumphant fist in the air of your brother, and it’s far from the mighty roar of Bowser, but we’re all very impressed by your uncanny ability to make your nose gently wiggle.
Other options include: fighting the air aggressively, waving the wrong way, and the classic “depressing uncle” move, the finger guns.Still to this day I can’t decide whether or not he is the best or the worst poser in the Smash Bros. roster, but I do know there were instances where we allowed Luigi to win for the sake of sheer hilarity.
7) Link – The Legend of Zelda
One of the simpler poses on this list, but certainly one of the more memorable in video game history, Link is known for posing whenever he finds a chest, or an item. Depending on the version you play, if it’s a 2D game, he’ll open the chest and then quickly pull out an item and hold it high above his head. If it’s one of the ones where he’s effectively Toon Link, he’ll lean all the way in, then suddenly snap back up and hold it high above his head.
No matter what though, Link’s opening of chests is one of the most dramatic elements of the game. Sometimes he’ll pull out a Boomerang, sometimes he’ll pull out a heart piece. No matter what it is, it doesn’t matter, as you know for a fact that whatever you get is going to be portrayed equally.
Link looks simply fabulous doing this pose, so naturally, this “item get” pose had to make the list.
6) Phoenix Wright – Ace Attorney
Phoenix Wright might not be the first name that springs to mind when it comes to poses, but we had a seriously good chat about this. We knew for a fact that Phoenix was a bit of a poser – Technically, everyone within the Ace Attorney series are, but trust me when I say that Phoenix, when he’s all scrubbed up and ready to defend some clients, is indeed the biggest poser of the series.
Whenever he’s winning, he’ll be smug, with his hands hand on his hips. Whenever he’s reading from some papers, he’ll look down at it, tapping at it, as if tapping the paper means something. Then, when life’s getting him down, he’ll put his hands in his hair and just look in despair. Finally, though most importantly, there’s that all important pose which turns the tide of any courtroom battle…
5) Eddy Gordo/Christie Monteiro – Tekken
Now, this is a bit of a cheat really, but effectively we’re considering stances as part of poses here.
See, Eddy/Christie are basically just swaps of one another, with some slight variations, but the two have been in Tekken for quite some time. In fact, Eddy’s first appearance was in Tekken 3, which was quite some time ago. Moving forward to 2018, he’s still around today, still dropping to the ground, swaying around the place and getting into new stances, all of which are part of his signature.
The same can be said of Christie whenever she’s included; she’s basically just a slightly different version of Eddy. However, Capoeira is their martial art of choice. Capoeira, for those of you who are unaware, is effectively a form of dance which can be made effective within combat. As such, from both of the Capo’s of Tekken’s Handstand Positions and Relaxed Positions, you bet they’re going to rack up a tonne of damage if you’re not certain how to counter it.
Get ready to parry!
4) Power Rangers
The very epitome of posing in front of explosions, whether as a team of lycra-clad teens armed with sci-fi weapons, or as a multi-story mech flicking its sword as the giant monster behind it explodes in a shower of sparks. As an adult watching the series now, it’s also very plain to see that all combat was was a series of poses and a lot of acrobatics, but I suppose it saves on lawsuits in such an over-the-top action heavy show.
Its roots so deeply embedded into anime history, the long dramatic pose was always going to be an essential for the Power Rangers, and their contemporaries. Every transformation scene, every fight, basically every instance of being in the suits is a chance for another poster moment.
3) Jotaro Kujo – JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure
Whilst his predecessor probably has one of the more striking poses, Jotaro Kujo is arguably the best poser of all of the JoJo’s. This is even when you take other characters, such as Stroheim, Polnareff and Iggy (Yes, that dog sure does know how to strike a pose). So then, out of all of the posers out of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure, picking Jotaro wasn’t an easy thing to do – Except for the extremity of his pose.
Unlike many of the others, who may hold a hand up, or touch their hat, Jotaro puts his hand on his hip and puts his hip far out from his torso. This provocative pose is probably one of the main selling points of the pretty-boy of the franchise. It may be argued that he isn’t the best poser, but he certainly has one of the more flamboyant poses, which, accompanied by his appearance, stands out more than most of the other characters.
Take a moment and think “Spider-Man poses”. Go ahead, think about it, I bet if you take a moment you’ll be able to think of a few classics. There’s the upside-down suspension with feet together around the web; there’s that weight-distributing mid-swing pose, with his legs forward and head low; he’s also a dab-hand at the “brooding on gargoyles” bit.
His mobility and grace are supernatural, control over his body while moving at the astounding speeds he achieves while swinging through New York, he has to know how to move, and every artist has that catalogue of recyclable poses that they can use to portray the incredible dexterity of those graced with spider-powers.
1) The Ginyu Force – Dragon Ball Z
Fronted by Captain Ginyu, the body-swapping martial artist, the Ginyu Force are the most elite force in the galaxy. This 5-man group is comprised of the small Guldo, the fast Burter, the strong Recoome, the Australian Jeice (what? He is…) and Captain Ginyu himself. They are hired by Frieza to handle Vegeta, Krillin and Gohan, but they are eventually bested by Goku when he comes to help the others.
The Ginyu force are no joke; they take their training very seriously. However, along with this training, they are also masters of poses. All five of them have an individual pose, which they practice to get perfect. They put all of these poses together to create a 5-man pose so epic, that in Dragon Ball Xenoverse, they had to put each of the five poses in, to allow players to come up with their own Ginyu Force poses with other players.
Not all posers are in vogue, a few may fall from the heights of fashion, to be spared a terrible fate by the net of honour. Some manage to pull off the superhero landing as they hit the bottom. Trust us, you don’t want to do that – It’s really bad for your knees.
Twoflower – Discworld
Honourable, because he himself is lousy at posing. He just kind of stands in front of the iconograph with his beaming grin, waiting for the goblin inside to finish painting. He enforces the very worst kind of tourism imagery, with everyone stood, face forward, smiling at the camera, with the backdrop of the holiday location behind, and you know they’d have gone into a slide machine if such a thing were possible.
And to those poor citizens of Ankh Morpork strong-armed by the little Agatean man with his happy-go-lucky smile, Twoflower’s obsession with recording his every moment, their awkwardness will be forever recorded in that revolutionary tome famous across the Counterweight Continent, What I Did On My Holidays.
Right, so amusingly, in the Mega Man games, whenever you defeat one of the Robot Masters, the game freezes Mega in place and some victory music happens, right? Well, what if I were to tell you that players use this to make Mega Man do some of the dorkiest things possible. Ever seen an episode of a sitcom end with a still image, usually just after an action has taken place? This is what this freezing effect does to players.
People will often jump just before the game freezes to play the victory music. This’ll put Mega in an awkward position, which totally counts as a pose, guys. It doesn’t matter what you think, just because I like to have Mega dead centre of my screen, doesn’t mean it’s not a pose! He’s posing for the camera, guys! He just killed a Robot Master!!!
… Ahem, I’ll uh, stop forcing him to do things he doesn’t need to do, now.
Usually at this juncture we would encourage you to vote for next week, but as we are both at Amecon this week and will be recording the next Top 10 discussion for your listening pleasure. So instead we shall use this moment to wave goodbye, as we ride into the sunset, and freezeframe. As ever though, let us know what you thought about this week’s list. Do you think we got the right posers on our list, or are they indeed just posing as the greatest? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below, or over on Facebook and Twitter.