Social Nucleus
The Circle of Friends has a Central Point


(permanent link) added: 2012-07-10 11:21:57 sponsor: KJMackley (last reply: 2012-09-07 05:01:57)

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As a group of friends come together and grow, often this is due to the influence of one particular person. Everyone seems to gravitate around them and rely on their charisma and influence when they have activities.

This isn't just the Character Magnetic Team where the main character is the leader, this is where if you make a diagram of the social relationships of a group one specific character tends to be centralized ie not everyone is friends with each other but everyone is friends with that one person. They often end up the Team Dad.

Examples:
  • Named for a line from The Big Bang Theory. Everyone in the group was basically friends with Leonard first and got to know each other through him. Sheldon once thought HE was the center of the group, only to realize the truth when the group ignored his strict schedule and followed Leonard around for changes in the regular pattern. Amy eventually explained that Leonard was the social nucleus. As the cast has grown and a female social group developed this has become less prevalent.
  • Ted from How I Met Your Mother. Barney is obsessed with being considered Ted's best friend, while Marshall has been his best friend since college. It's been reinforced several times that it was his influence that brought Robin into the group, thus even as she became best friends with Lily he seems to be the central point.
  • Earl from My Name Is Earl. Early in the second season they were trying to help Joy with some legal problems and everyone was relying on Earl to solve everything, except for Catalina who hated Joy. As Earl started stressing out because everyone was demanding so much from him Catalina realized she was being selfish by not helping out her friend, so while she hated Joy she was willing to help Earl.
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