If I Could Be Any Fictional Character, Who Would I Be?

Daily writing prompt
If you could be a character from a book or film, who would you be? Why?

In today’s world of chaos that seems increasingly on the edge of nuclear-fueled bombastic insanity, these little journeys into the world of the fictional are a welcome diversion. Thank you for that, WordPress team.

In considering this list, there are several characters which I would consider. My first choice would be, of course, one of the protagonists from my still-in-progress novel. In this story, we have a married couple of private detectives who are skilled in the realm of physical penetration testing. Though they are not as strong in terms of the cyber angle of pen testing, the 3ed protagonist is a close female friend and associate of whom maintains a job at an ISP, but also moonlights as the detective’s hacker whenever the need arises.

Though the original character started off as a male, I realized that to be very much mirroring of the actual tech industry itself. It tends to be a male-dominated sector. As such, why can’t a female play the part of a skilled tech genius with a cool career and a kickass side gig?

After all, Mr Robot had Darlene, Trenton, Dominique, Angela and many other strong female characters (and lets not forget the oh-so-dynamic White Rose).

One will recognize a bit of a theme in this piece. My discovery and immediate fascination of all things techy and cyber back in around 2017 or so paved the way for completing my book (which was unfinished for a decade. A product of writer’s block). Though I never knew it at the time, listening to hours and hours of hacking slash security podcasts like Security Now and Darknet Diaries would end up helping to write the last part of my book. All because it answered one big question that had me stumped for a long time:

How do you break into a giant corporation and snoop undetected?

As it turns out, very easily in a great many cases.

Because of this, my taste in fiction tends to be less in the realm of sci-fi or comic and more reality-adjacent. I like characters that fit into the real world as it is in a nutshell.

Following my praise of Mr. Robot, it is probably no surprise that my first pick on this list is Elliot Alderson. I’ve always liked the very human-like characteristics he embodies from the very beginning of the series (including the struggles that often accompany our mortal human existences, such as misanthropy and addiction). The vast depth of the character which we learn about later (along with that of White Rose), is a nice treat to go with the rest of the series. I’m sure the Tyler Durden similarity isn’t a coincidence, though I feel like the Alderson character traits are more likely based on real documented traits (which would fit with the well-researched nature of the show).


My next character of choice would probably be Sherlock Holmes from the BBC’s 2010’s iteration of the series. From the moment I lay eyes on this series (sometime in 2014, if memory serves), I was hooked. Though there is certainly a lot going on in general, his lack of consideration for everyday social etiquette was never disappointing. But an unnecessary barrier standing in the way of solving whatever puzzle is at hand.

The part that strikes me the most about the character is the sort of ironic humbleness he tries to employ when people call him brilliant or get swept away by his deductions. Thus the phrase “you see, but you do not observe“.
It’s a concept that is very much transferable to real life. And very much headache-inducing when people just don’t fucking get what is seemingly right in front of them.

However, he was not the only character in the series that fascinated me. The character of Moriarty certainly is something to behold. A man seemingly of equal intellect to Sherlock, who seemingly passes the days by making the unthinking idiots (terrorists, spies or other criminals) “dance.” A world which would not be complete without the set-ups seemingly created just for Sherlock. Even Sherlock couldn’t scratch Moriarty’s itch of boredom, leading to his blowing his brains out (followed closely by Sherlock’s very public demise) at the end of series 3.

However, he was not the only character in the series that fascinated me. The character of Moriarty certainly is something to behold. A man seemingly of equal intellect to Sherlock, who seemingly passes the days by making the unthinking idiots (terrorists, spies or other criminals) “dance.” A world which would not be complete without the set-ups seemingly created just for Sherlock. And even Sherlock eventually couldn’t scratch Moriarty’s itch of boredom, leading to his eventual suicide on the rooftop of St. Barts (followed in short order by Sherlock’s very public demise).

Really, the show has many characters that I find fascinating. Irene Adler had a way of putting Sherlock in his place, and not just because of her pass time as a dominatrix, either.
Charles Agustus Magnusun (the show’s take on infamous Aussie tabloid mogul Rupert Murdoch) also proved chillingly interesting.

Take this quote:

Magnussen: Knowing is owning.

Watson: But if you just know it, then you don’t have proof.

Magnussen: Proof? What would I need proof for. I’m in news, you moron. I don’t have to prove it, I just have to print it.


Consider that this statement was uttered in the midst of the social media age and not all that long before the era of increasingly hard-to-spot deep fakes.

The last interesting character I want to mention showed up in the 4th series of the show (the one I like the least).
Episode 1 (The Six Thatchers) starts off with what is supposed to be a super important meeting involving all those knowledgeable of the demise of previously mentioned Charles Augustus Magnussen. However, a high Sherlock quickly derails things by peppering Lady Smallwood’s seemingly incompetent secretary Vivian Norbury with ridiculous and unrelated questions. Though she may have seemed like a typical idiot to everyone in the room, she outwitted everyone by the end of the episode.

Though the show’s last series went off a cliff, I think the first 2 to 3 seasons were a treat that I still occasionally go back to.

I don’t know what to think about the final problem showcasing the vengeance of Sherlock’s locked-up sister Eurus Holmes (seemingly with a helping hand from Moriarty). Though I have that critique, I have to say that I disagree with the fairly common one that accuses the series of queer-baiting. Though I can certainly see where the accusation can come from, I feel there are better explanations available for this trait in the characters’ backgrounds.
Starting with Sherlock and John, the taboo that is men admitting to their own sexuality is still so strong in society today that all the little insinuations all over the series come across to me as just making light of this silliness. As for Moriarty and Irene Adler, I’d say that their queer sexuality just adds richness to their character.

That this wouldn’t fit in previous adaptations of Sherlock . . . no kidding. Even Elvis’s swinging hips were at one time too racy for prime-time television. And besides, I’d much rather shows not just keep adding token characters to align with the winds of change and progress. As Mr. Robot and Sherlock showcase, sexuality can bring far more richness to a character than simply checking a box.

The last character I would love to walk in the shoes of is from a film that debuted 23 years ago. That character is Memphis Raines, played by Nicolas Cage in the film Gone In 60 Seconds. I loved this movie as a teenager and still love that movie. Who wouldn’t want to be the guy who gets to drive the infamous Elenore!


Wanna be that guy? Have at least $1,000,000 on hand to spare. Though putting 2 or 3 mill extra on the side would be more likely to garner the winning bid.

As with many of my childhood fascinations, adulthood seems to always bring with it a bitter pill to swallow. In this case, it’s the copyright holders of the Gone In 60 Seconds franchise’s quickness in bringing lawsuits to seemingly anyone that dares try and reconstruct the Elenore, the infamous Shelby GT500 from the film. Fortunately, that seems to have ended now, according to this December 2022 article.

Another unfortunate aspect of this film is that the theft methods (or reasons) have not changed much in the last 23 years.

This becomes even worse when one finds out that Honda has been caught with a vulnerability in its remote locking system.

The “Rolling-Pwn” attack, uncovered by Star-V Lab security researchers Kevin2600 and Wesley Li, exploits a vulnerability in the way Honda’s keyless entry system transmits authentication codes between the car and the key fob. It works in a similar way to the recently discovered Bluetooth replay attack affecting some Tesla vehicles; using easily purchasable radio equipment, the researchers were able to eavesdrop and capture the codes, then broadcast them back to the car in order to gain access.

This allowed the researchers to remotely unlock and start the engines of cars affected by the vulnerability, which includes models from as far back as 2012 and as recent as 2022. But according to The Drive, which independently tested and verified the vulnerability on a Honda Accord 2021, the key fob flaw doesn’t allow an attacker to drive off with the vehicle.


It may not allow you to drive off with the vehicle, but it does render any form of security of the contents completely moot. Don’t leave any Christmas gifts or valuables in the car!

And it doesn’t matter if they can’t start the engine, anyway. As we have learned from Marketplace, this makes the car easier to steal. They no longer need to use a lissi pick. Which are also easy to obtain online (case in point, 1 own one!).

As noted by the researchers, this kind of attack should be prevented by the vehicle’s rolling codes mechanism — a system introduced to prevent replay attacks by providing a new code for each authentication of a remote keyless entry. Vehicles have a counter that checks the chronology of the generated codes, increasing the count when it receives a new code.

Kevin2600 and Wesley Li found that the counter in Honda vehicles is resynchronized when the car vehicle gets lock and unlock commands in a consecutive sequence, causing the car to accept codes from previous sessions that should have been invalidated.

“By sending the commands in a consecutive sequence to the Honda vehicles, it will be resynchronizing the counter,” the researchers write. “Once counter resynced, commands from the previous cycle of the counter worked again. Therefore, those commands can be used later to unlock the car at will.”

The researchers say they tested their attack on several Honda models, including the Honda Civic 2012, Honda Accord 2020 and Honda Fit 2022, but warn that the security vulnerability could affect “all Honda vehicles currently existing on the market” and may also affect other manufacturers’ cars.


The kicker to all of this is Honda’s response.

However, in a statement given to TechCrunch, Honda spokesperson Chris Naughton said the company “can confirm claims that it is possible to employ sophisticated tools and technical know-how to mimic Remote Keyless commands and gain access to certain vehicles or ours.

“However, while it is technically possible, we want to reassure our customers that this particular kind of attack, which requires continuous close-proximity signal capture of multiple sequential RF transmissions, cannot be used to drive the vehicle away. Furthermore, Honda regularly improves security features as new models are introduced that would thwart this and similar approaches,” Naughton said, noting that while the company has “no plan” to update older vehicles, redesigned 2022 and 2023 model year vehicles have an improved system that would prevent this type of attack from working.


Sure, you can not drive the vehicle away based on this vulnerability. However, anyone with any knowledge of modern-day cyber security awareness should know that the problem isn’t just with single vulnerabilities anymore. Problems come from several vulnerabilities chained together to form 1 stealth attack. It is how many get around the safeguards employed by various software vendors (KEEP YOUR GADGETS UPDATED!) both at democons like Blackhat and in the wild. And it is how all of these vehicles (Honda’s or otherwise) are still being stolen Gone In 60 Seconds style decades later.

In closing this piece (since I have to get to work soon!), I guess it would be cool to be Memphis Rains because, assuming he is still around, he would still have a job today! After all, it seems the tech revolution helped car thieves far more than it ever deterred them.

Maybe I also feel this way because Gone In 60 Seconds was a one-time thing (well, outside of the old versions). Though I had equal liking for The Fast And The Furious as a teen, that would change over the years as the franchise kept getting increasingly rediculous. That, and certain actors therein would sour my view of the franchise even more by way of their various idiodic publicly shared opinions.

Indeed, it is true that the brand and the actors should not be conflated. Even considering that, though, the brand lost me years ago.

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