Significant characters on Helix, and their associated tropes.
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The Core Group
Dr. Alan Farragut
Played by: Billy Campbell
“When a surgeon fumbles, the patient dies. When WE drop the ball, thousands die.”
Dr. Peter Farragut
Played by: Neil Napier
"Something about being trapped in this place. I see that bastard around every corner."
- Abusive Parents: He had an angry, violent drunk for a father, which lies at the root of some of his behavioral tics.
- Always Someone Better: Feels this way toward Alan, and covets his success, his respect...and his wife.
- The Atoner: Becomes this after being cured of the virus.
- Bad Black Barf: Used with horrifying effect on Julia to infect her.
- Black Blood
- Brainwashed and Crazy: He is compelled to spread the The Virus. Though violent and paranoid, he is cognizant enough to form plans to access the uninfected.
- Double Reverse Quadruple Agent: By Season 2 he's back on active duty with the CDC, working to counter a new infection. But he's also taking orders from somebody else. We don't know who yet.
- The Mole: For Ilaria.
- Old Flame: With Julia.
- Orifice Invasion: Gives people the standard squick-inducing Bad Black Barf kiss to transmit The Virus.
- Personal Space Invader: He can't help it due to being infected.
- Super Strength: Again thanks to The Virus.
- Tainted Veins
- The Virus: His entire body shows signs of it.
Dr. Julia Walker
Played by: Kyra Zagorsky
"Get it together, Jules! You. Don't. Get. Sick."
- Beauty Is Never Tarnished: Averted. As her infection progresses she starts to look steadily worse, with bloodshot eyes and Tainted Veins steadily creeping around her face.
- Face-Heel Turn: Appeared to be the case in the first season finale, as she's seen sitting on the Ilaria Board of Directors and not hiding her Glowing Eyes. It turns out it's more complicated than that: On the one hand, she's trying to change Ilaria from the inside out, trying to make them less evil. But on the other hand, she seems to have wholeheartedly drank the Ilaria Kool-Aid on human population control, seeking the least morally-objectionable means toward a quite objectionable (for humans at least) end.
- Glowing Eyes: After Hatake somehow cures her from infection, her eyes become the same luminescent silver color as his, implying that this unnatural eye color is a side effect of the cure. Hatake provides her with contacts of her original eye color with which to mask them in the following episode after Julia discovers that her new eyes have an extreme sensitivity to bright lights.
- Helpful Hallucination: When she realizes The Virus is causing her subconscious to manifest Jaye.
- I Hate You, Vampire Dad: In essence, if not in fact, once Hatake reveals his paternity and nature to her.
- Old Flame: With both Alan and Peter.
- Trauma-Induced Amnesia: When infected by Peter. Then again, it may just be good old-fashioned denial/Blatant Lies.
- We Can Rule Together: Tries this on Sarah, telling her that she's being wasted at the CDC, that she should come work for Ilaria and be with her own kind. Sarah isn't even slightly tempted.
Dr. Sarah Jordan
Played by: Jordan Hayes
“We are all waiting to die. I just have a little less time.”
- Blessed with Suck: She became immortal when she was newly pregnant. When she stopped aging, so did the fetus. She's permanently in her first trimester, suffering from morning sickness and nosebleeds.
- Fake Guest Star: Listed as a guest star despite appearing in every episode of the first season (which is actually one more than series regular Balleseros).
- It Doesn't Mean Anything: After having sex with Alan, she denies any feelings the next episode, calling it simple biology. Alan, of course, is silently hurt by this.
- Mercy Kill: Sarah does this to an infected patient to spare her from becoming one of the vectors.
- Older Than They Look: Lampshaded. She looks like a teenager but is well into her mid 20's.
- Secretly Dying: She has a brain tumor which causes her right hand to shake uncontrollably.
- Surprise Pregnancy: Sarah discovers this in the first season finale.
- Took a Level in Badass: Come Season 2, she has a reputation at the CDC for throwing herself willingly into the most dangerous situations, earning the nickname "Hot Zone." She looks at her acquired immortality as a gift that she needs to use to help make the world a safer place.
- Two First Names: Not only can her last name be a first name, but it's her very own actress's first name.
- Your Days Are Numbered: She's trying to make the best of the time she has left.
Dr. Doreen Boyle
Played by: Catherine Lemieux
“Someone designed this virus and it sure as shit wasn't mother nature.”
- Cruel and Unusual Death: Stabbed with a syringe by Balleseros thus giving her a embolism. It caused her to convulse violently then she has a shelf full of infected rats pushed on her which eat her ALIVE. Not an easy way to go, to say the least.
- Deadpan Snarker
- He Knows Too Much: Almost to the point of being invoked. Balleseros uses her to get the information he needs, then kills her so she can't tell anyone else.
- Odd Friendship: With Balleseros
- Snark-to-Snark Combat: With Balleseros.
Major Sergio Balleseros
Played by: Mark Ghanime
"Keeping the word from getting out on this shit show is one of my imperatives."
- Affably Evil: Despite all the horrible things he does to plug potential leaks he is easy to get along with.
- Apologetic Attacker: "Sorry, Doreen. I'm so sorry."
- Back Stab: His preferred method of dealing with the unfortunate people who know too much.
- Being Evil Sucks: Grows increasingly disgusted with himself over the things he's done like killing Doreen or kidnapping the children. May be the reason for his eventual (apparent) Heel-Face Turn.
- Cleanup Crew: His main purpose for being at the facility. Lampshaded.
- Deadpan Snarker
- Just Following Orders
- Karmic Death: Daniel stabs him in the chest with an ice pick. The wound itself is not instantly fatal, so he proceeds to remove the Major's protective clothing, leaving him to be killed by the elements; similar to how Balleseros himself disabled Doreen and left her to be eaten by the rats.
- As it turns out, he is Not Quite Dead.
- Majorly Awesome
- Odd Friendship: With Doreen. He kills her anyway.
- Shirtless Scene: After being captured by Anana the camera lingers on his chest many times.
- Snark-to-Snark Combat: With Doreen.
- The Engineer: His purpose is to analyze the facility itself to discern structural methods of transmission.
Dr. Kyle Sommers
Played by: Matt Long
- Cock Fight: With Alan over Sarah. Morphs into Teeth-Clenched Teamwork when the infection escalates...and when Sarah makes it clear to the both of them that they have no time for this kind of nonsense.
- Dark and Troubled Past: If his hallucinations to his childhood are accurate, he was pretty badly bullied. Kids used to call him "Stinky Sommers" and actually threw crap at him.
- Deadpan Snarker: He's got his moments.
- Distaff Counterpart: He's basically the male version of Doreen Boyle.
- Dogged Nice Guy: Plays this role toward Sarah. Sarah's got way too much going on to notice...and Alan showing back up in the picture complicates things even more.
- Friend to All Children: Bonds with the children of Michael's cult very easily. Seeing them all dead affects him terribly.
- Guile Hero: Manages to turn two crazy cannibals against each other and make an escape just by talking.
- Sanity Slippage: Ever since being infected, he's been hallucinating and lashing out violently.
Dr. Hiroshi Hatake
Played by: Hiroyuki Sanada
“You don't have the intellectual capacity to evaluate my work.”
- Badass: He's able to get off three kill shots with a pistol with remarkable speed, and later stabs himself through the midsection as part a ploy.
- For Science!: Appears to be his motivation.
- Glowing Eyes: He hides his creepy luminescent silver eyes behind tinted contacts.
- Katanas Are Just Better: He busts one out in Season 2. And he's old enough that he's probably used it himself in ye olden Samurai days.
- Luke, I Am Your Father: He turns out to be Julia's father.
- Morally Ambiguous Doctorate
- Professor Guinea Pig: Implied by his use of said contacts.
- Really 700 Years Old: He's apparently 513 years old, and only looks in his early forties or so.
- Scars Are Forever: His lower back is covered with them. He got them from a house fire trying to save his daughter. It's implied this might be a lie.
Played by: Meegwun Fairbrother
“I don't work for him. I AM his son.”
- Blind Obedience: To Hatake. Hinted at by Balleseros. Despite this, he is still disturbed when Hatake kills three scientists who had surrendered their weapons, and voices his disapproval.
- Bond One-Liner: "Got a reply for that message!"
- The Dragon: To Dr. Hatake.
- Even Evil Has Standards: As mentioned above, he is visibly disturbed upon witnessing Hatake's murder of three infected scientists after they had surrendered. It is this event that prompts him to start to question whether his Undying Loyalty to Hatake is well placed.
- Fake Guest Star: Daniel appears in 12 of season 1's 13 episodes (and actor Meegwun Fairbrother appears in all 13) but is listed among the guest stars.
- Genre Savvy: After Balleseros ambushes him out in the snow, he survives due to the heavy protective clothing he was wearing. When he returns the favor and takes out Balleseros, he makes sure to remove the Major's layers so that he won't be so lucky.
- Happily Adopted: To Hatake, who raised him. Until he's told that he had been kidnapped from his village by Hatake when he was a child
- Heroic Sacrifice: He triggers the explosive collar himself, fully knowing that it will result in his own death, in order to spare Hatake from having to make the Sadistic Choice of who to save between him and Julia.
- The Resenter: In Season 2 he comes to resent Hatake's favoritism toward his biological daughter Julia at his expense. Of course, by this point the Daniel we're seeing is just a hallucination of Hatake's, so he might be projecting his own guilt.
- Took a Level in Badass: Ambushes Balleseros with an ice pick, strips him of his protective clothing, then leaves him to die exposed to the elements.
- Your Head Asplode: His head is blown off by an explosive collar.
- Ancient Conspiracy: It's a front for a group of Immortals who've been working behind the scenes for centuries to control the human race.
- Batman Gambit: There is no NARVIK-C. It was all an elaborate plan to get Julia to lead them to Michael's "Mother Tree," to fulfill their real agenda of controlling human fertility.
- Black and Gray Morality: Everyone working at Ilaria is genocidal toward the human race to one degree or another, believing them to be a virus on the planet that must be wiped out, or at least reduced to a manageable level. They just differ in means and severity. Alan points out that even Julia's more humane solution - instigating widespread infertility - is still genocide.
- Corrupt Corporate Executive: We've yet to see one who isn't.
- Mega Corp.: They're nominally a biotech firm, but they have their own private army, network of communications satellites, and God knows what else.
- Older Than They Look: Every higher-up executive is an Immortal. Some of them are over 500 years old, and the oldest-looking of them is Hatake, who doesn't look a day over 40.
Played by: Jeri Ryan
- Bad Boss: She treats the people under her command purely as assets, and thinks nothing of berating or even physically abusing them for real or perceived failures.
- Chewing the Scenery: Yeah, Jeri Ryan clearly had a good time here.
- Control Freak: Will not tolerate insubordination or any deviation from her plans.
- Corrupt Corporate Executive: And how.
- Hair-Trigger Temper: It doesn't take much to set her off.
- Hoist By Their Own Petard: The watch she gave Hatake plays a crucial role in her death.
- Jerk with a Heart of Jerk: At first she just seems like a fast-talking executive who sincerely does want to do the right thing. Later...not so much.
Spencer Chissik, aka "The Scythe"
Played by: Robert Naylor
- The Dreaded: Hatake is afraid of the man.
- Dual Wielding: Carries two hand scythes as his main weapons.
- Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: Constance Sutton was his mother, and her death has made him...unhappy.
- Meaningful Name: The Scythe deals death like the Grim Reaper himself.
- Older Than He Looks: Very. He looks like a teenage boy, but Constance Sutton is his mother, and he's apparently had a lot of practice killing and torturing.
- Professional Killer: He's Ilaria's wetworks guy.
- Sadist: Enjoys his job a little too much.
- The Sociopath
- Torture Technician
- Weapon of Choice: He's named after it.
Played by: Christian Jadah
Played by: Deena Aziz
- Corrupt Corporate Executive: Chairman of the Board of Ilaria. It comes with the territory.
- Even Evil Has Standards: She thinks the plan to release NARVIK-C into the general population (killing off 75% of the human race) is a bit much.
- Hidden Depths: She's spent her Immortality perfecting coq au vin. Even Julia has to admit it's really good.
Played by: Alexandra Sicard
- Affably Evil: The "evil" part is debatable, but she is part of Ilaria.
- Blessed with Suck: She's filthy rich, worldly, and possessing of extremely refined tastes and very mature, adult desires. And she's trapped in the body of a 10-year-old girl."There is much joy in being young and rich. But there is much sadness in being young and rich forever."
- My Species Doth Protest Too Much: She takes issue with the other Immortals about their extreme measures to reduce Mortal populations, thinking they've lost sight of what they originally hoped to do as stewards of the planet.
- Older Than She Looks: Even more so than the Scythe.
Saint Germain Island Cult
Brother Michael, aka Vincente Michel Du Bois
Played by: Stephen Webber
- Buried Alive: Amy does this to him when she takes over.
- Dissonant Serenity: He's preternaturally calm despite everything that's going on.
- Evilutionary Biologist: A surprisingly low-tech version: his commune is a farm that uses old-time selective breeding and plant grafting techniques. This includes his own bloodline.
- Faux Affably Evil: And how.
- Hoist By Their Own Petard: Keeps an oubliette around to get rid of his enemies. Amy does the same to get rid of him.
- Monster Sob Story: He was a 17th-century nobleman who fell in love with a peasant girl. She cheated on him with his best friend, giving him a son that was obviously not his. So he killed them all and swore off love forever.
- Older Than He Looks: He's a "silver-eye" Immortal, so he's at least 500 years old.
- Villainous Breakdown: The only time he loses his cool is when Amy and her followers are sealing him up in the oubliette.
- Wife Husbandry: A disturbing example: he's been impregnating his own daughters for at least three generations, in an attempt to breed another Immortal.
Played by: Claire Coulter
Played by: Severn Thompson
- Heroic BSOD: After Michael kills off the rest of the cult.
- The Lancer: To Michael until Amy frames her for poisoning half the cult members.
- My Master, Right or Wrong: Loyal to Michael to a fault. Even after he kills everyone, she still maintains her devotion to his vision.
- We Can Rule Together: Gives this treatment to Peter, saying that the Cult needs a leader, and he'd made a good one. It works.
Played by: Alison Louder
- Brother-Sister Incest: with Landry.
- Chewing the Scenery: You thought Jeri Ryan was bad...wow.
- Evil Is Sexy: And she knows it.
- Karmic Transformation: While celebrating her (falsified) ascension to immortal status, she's caught outside when the CDC sprays St. Germain with their super-defoliant which melts half her face before Landry can drag her inside.
- Manipulative Bitch: She's playing everyone against each other.
- Sanity Slippage: Arguably, she was never all there to begin with, but she's been slowly losing it ever since overthrowing Michael.
- Smug Snake: Almost as much as Michael.
- The Starscream: To Michael.
- The Unfettered: After her beauty is destroyed by the super-defoliant, she says she's free to drop her Smug Snake pretense and become the total sociopath she truly is.
- Villainous Breakdown: Has a pretty epic one when she learns that Landry has hidden away the Mother Root, trashing everything in her path and screaming at the top of her lungs.
Played by: Sean Tucker
- Body Horror: His body rejects the infusion of Sarah's spinal fluid and he mutates into something very icky.
- Brother-Sister Incest: turns out he and Amy are siblings. Ew.
- The Dragon: He does Michael's and later Amy's dirty work.
- Love Makes You Evil: He's infatuated with Amy, and that leads him to do terrible things on her say-so.
- Made of Iron: Survives a fall from the top of the abbey clock tower without serious injury. Though his recent mutation may have something to do with that.
- Stepford Smiler: Always has a pleasant expression on his face.
Played by: Sara Booth
- Absurdly Youthful Mother: Must have been in her teens when she had her son Soren.
- The Dragon: To Amy after Landry is incapacitated.
- Insane Troll Logic: Comes to believe the CDC brought the epidemic with them, and attacks Sarah for it.
- Unwitting Pawn: Amy uses her to sow chaos in the wake of the new outbreak.
Played by: Cameron Brodeur
Played by: Luciana Carro
- Action Girl: She manages to turn Balleseros into her own personal Butt Monkey several times.
- Belligerent Sexual Tension: With Balleseros.
- Conspiracy Theorist: She's suspected that something nefarious has been going on at Arctic Biosystems for a long time, and has a low-key Room Full of Crazy tying them to the cases of missing children - among them her own brother, Miksa - going back decades.
- Properly Paranoid: She's not wrong.
- Fair Cop: The Sheriff of the local Inuit village, and not hard on the eyes.
Played by: Meegwun Fairbrother
- Acting for Two
- Badass: He's pretty tough, able to hold his own against trained mercenaries.
- Big Brother Instinct: With Anana, going so far as to threaten Balleseros with bodily harm if he hurts her.
- Gentle Giant: Unless you piss him off.
- Separated at Birth: Technically, they were separated as very young children, but "Daniel Aerov" is actually his long-lost twin brother Miksa.
Played by: Anders Yates
- Driven to Suicide: The first thing he does when he's freed from his restraints is take a pair of bolt cutters to his jugular vein.
- Fate Worse Than Death: Hatake chained him up in an abandoned outpost in the middle of the Artic. He's an Immortal, so he can't die from starvation or exposure. So he just sat there, for God knows how long, slowly going mad.
- Go Mad from the Isolation: Pretty much his deal.
- Older Than He Looks: He might have actually been a Viking, but he's also crazy, so who knows.
- Who Wants to Live Forever?