I think I'll just have to repeat myself from before, since I was not acknowledged:
"As I've been saying
, the frequency in which a red-haired, green-eyed character is a main (or very important) character is not random. It's a deliberate costuming trope that I believe is chosen to reflect the character's "specialness". Red hair is uncommon. Green eyes are uncommon. In fact, I'd say the issue with there usually only being one red-haired, green-eyed character in single work is indicative of how fond creator's are of using this as a way to make a character unique and special. If tons of characters have it, yes, it's definitely notable, but it takes away from that character's specialness."
"Compare the live-action film
to the literature, anime, western animation, and video games sections—it's much smaller in comparison because it's much harder to find red-haired, green-eyed actresses. Two are from Maureen O'Hara (probably the most famous green-eyed, red-headed actress ever), and one of them is digital and cosmetic make-ups and wigs.
My point is that it's not a random trope. They don't seem to be selecting any old hair color or any old eye color, there's a disproportionately large amount of creators who favor this color combination, and it's noticeable. The reason seems to be how striking it looks. If I had to guess, it's also that, since the colors are so rare, it makes the character look more unique."
"Red and green are the only two complementary colors
(meaning colors that appear to make each other brighter with proximity) that humans can actually have. Combined with their rarity, I believe creators choose this combination to reflect perhaps the importance of a character or to make them look more dynamic and interesting. It's why we often see extremes in color in animation—why no one seems to have dirty blonde hair or mud brown hair, but platinum and chestnut. No one has watery blue eyes (except villains or ineffectual people), they have sky-blue eyes. It's to make them seem more unique and special, and better to "look" at."
There. A bit long, but these have been my general points—which no one has yet to address. This is why being unique is important to the trope. This is why this trope occurring only once or twice in-universe is actually relevant to it being a trope.
ETA: In short, Greeneyed Redhead
is used to visually identify special or important characters.
edited 11th Jan '12 6:53:11 AM by helterskelter