Minorities in cartoons: Wallace Wells

Wallace Wells
Art by Bryan Lee O’Malley.

This week’s minorities in cartoons entry is Wallace Wells, a supporting character in the comic series (and movie) “Scott Pilgrim.” Wallace was created by Bryan Lee O’Malley.

Background

“Scott Pilgrim” focuses on its eponymous character’s slacker-ish life in Toronto, and his attempt to win over Ramona, an American who’s moved to Toronto. To win her over, Scott’s forced to fight and defeat her multitude of “evil exes,” people Ramona used to date. The world the books take place in plays fast and loose with the laws of physics, with aspects that operate similar to the rules of a video game, most prominently Scott’s fights.

Wallace is Scott’s roommate and close friend. Unlike Scott, Wallace is doing fairly well with his life, and has a steady job; Wallace is the one paying for most of the two’s expenses. Wallace isn’t exactly rich, however—Wallace and Scott both share a full-size bed, unable to afford two separate beds. Despite Scott’s flaws, Wallace usually is fairly patient with him.

Another way Wallace differs from Scott is that Wallace has a less volatile love life. Several dates of Wallace are shown through the series, including the boyfriend he eventually moves in with. Wallace is also quite open about his sexuality.

Wallace also tutors Scott (or at least tries to do so) in the art of fighting Ramona’s evil-ex foes. Similar to some other characters in the series, Wallace has demonstrated at least one superpower: “psychic chi,” used to, among other things, dry himself off.

Other media

In 2010, a film version of the book series was released, “Scott Pilgrim vs. the World.” Wallace in the film was played by Kieran Culkin, the younger brother of “Home Alone” star Macaulay Culkin.

(Updated 11/22/16)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *