Portrait of a Character – Levi Cavendish
Levi Cavendish has a wacky history.
Before I began writing Star Trek fan fiction, I had a time travel series in a kind of embryonic state. The inventor of the technology, who would be the director and also a bit of a difficult person, but also the lover to Otra D’Angelo, was to have the name Levi Cavendish. But then I started writing Trek fan fiction, and Levi turned out quite differently. I like him a lot better these days. He’s really gotten a lot more character development in Multiverse II, including becoming temporally paradoxical, and vanishing from existence.
He is also, along with Otra, the developer of Otric Theory. Levi named it after her, an act that he does not recognize was out of affection. But at least Otra knows.
Levi is played by Edward Norton. I particularly love him from the Fight Club era.
He just looks as itchy and twitchy as I think of Levi.
An actor playing Levi has got to be someone who is smart and creative. However, ultimately, he must also be hamstrung by a bunch of different tics, quirks and downright disabilities. I believe Norton can really do that.
Levi’s got major issues.
Squirrely, nervous and suffering from a number of personality disorders, Levi is a misunderstood and underestimated genius. Nobody seems to get him, except for Otra D’Angelo. And even she doesn’t always.
His home is decorated in stills from the Twilight Zone and other bits of classic science fiction memorabilia. His wardrobe is mainly uniforms for the Temporal Integrity Commission, or functional things. Beauty, aesthetics, and form don’t really hold much meaning for him, except as they serve function.
With Adult ADHD, high-level autism, hyperactivity, occasional stuttering and an inability to look most people in the eye, it’s a wonder that Levi can get anything done at all. He has a wacky fundamentalist mother who changes her religion as often as many people change their socks. Plus there’s a father who abandoned the family years ago. And he now has a court order to spend time with Levi (and can’t wait until Levi’s thirtieth birthday, to be freed of his obligations), it’s a wonder that Levi is even on the same planet as sanity.
Levi is odd enough that he knows that he will do lots of things for Otra. However, he does not truly comprehend that his actions are out of love. Even in his dreams, when he can get the girl, his romantic line to her is, “My foot hurts.”
So yeah, he’s pretty messed up.
Levi’s crazy antics spell sped-up rap-type patter to me.
- Manhattan Transfer – Twilight Zone/Twilight Tone
- Reunion – Life is a Rock (But the Radio Rolled Me)
- Joe Jackson – Got the Time
There’s no reason why Levi can’t have a Mirror Universe counterpart. However, it’s likely that someone as messed up as all that would not survive for very long on the other side of the pond.
Hence, I can see a Mirror Levi as not being autistic or hyperactive at all, or not for long, if he was ever to have a prayer of surviving past about his tenth birthday. Instead, his genius would be ruthless. Plus he would be cruelly efficient and perhaps even sadistic. He would probably be an extremely scary individual.
“Can’t hear chatter on the comm anymore. Throw the pies at the Chilo, Maren. Please.”
This character was not truly, fully realized until Multiverse II. But now he’s a much better and more deeply three-dimensional character than ever before. I like him, no matter how much he might annoy or at least baffle the other characters.