As it turns out, my three favorite hero leader guys Captain James Kirk, Captain Jack Harkness and also Colonel Jack O’Neill have a lot in common. And not only that their names all start with J. Hope you like it!
I certainly seem to have a type! The hero leader type.
All three are
And their leading comes natural. They don’t need to enforce it usually, they easily get the respect they deserve. They lead with a smile on their face and much leeway. They allow their teams to think for themselves, and listen to their opinions and occasionally even change their mind if they are good. But if they have reason to reprimand you, out comes the steel! Then they can be hard and cold and sharp and unrelenting. You would not want to be on their bad side! But they are fair. They give you a second chance, to put things right.
Once in a while they are forced to make the bad decisions, and their teams / friends might hate them for it. Still, as Jack O’Neill once put it, “this is what they pay them the big bucks for”. Sometimes they need to decide between the fate of one human and the whole universe, and they are able to make that decision for the greater good, no matter the cost to themselves. They refuse to talk about it afterwards and rather crack a joke to not let see anyone what they really feel. That they have emotions at all. It gets all bottled up inside but sometimes it becomes too much to bear. Nobody knows much about their personal life anyway, and usually there is not much to talk about either. They are married to their ship / their work. They are the first in the morning and the last in the evening, and stay all night and go for days without sleep if necessary. Even if they are hurt, in pain; they stay on their post as long as necessary to get out of this alive. They always care more for others than for themselves. They think they screw up any relationship because of the mad working hours, long time away from home or the military secrets they need to keep.
But, and that is the beauty, each one of them has someone they can confide in, someone to trust, someone where they don’t feel the need to play a role and are able to open up, show their true self. For the two military leaders, that would be their CMO – outside their chain of command, equal in rank and a good friend for many years. Dr. McCoy for Kirk, Dr. Fraiser for O’Neill. Someone who has seen them in their darkest hours, hurt, in pain, who knows about the nightmares, every single secret, every broken bone. Someone who never would betray the trust put into them and who are able to give their valid input when needed and asked for. Or just a glass of Saurian Brandy. Who also know when they need to enforce that they are even higher in the chain of command and can overrule the captain / colonel for their own good, and when better let him be. A thing both Jack and Jim have in common – they try to get out of the infirmary / sickbay as soon as possible. They surely make life for their doctors not easy. They hate that place and all the prodding and probing with a passion. Probably because they spend so much time there… another Jack O’Neill quote: “Aliens are always poking me full of holes!” (and isn’t that true of Kirk also!). They don’t want anyone to see them weak. It goes against their pride.
Obviously, this is a bit different with Jack Harkness, but he also has someone who is always close when needed, Ianto. And just because he can’t really die doesn’t mean that dying isn’t still hurting. So he has his fair share of nightmares also, just different ones.
So, I can’t choose between those three alpha males. I just wish they would all meet and team up. The universe might not survive it though.