The Professor is not a fan of mushy feelings and rose-colored glasses. He’s a man of logic, rational thinking and precision. This is your Sherlock Holmes, your Spock.
The Professor is logical, introverted and faithful. He’s an expert in his field (and probably a few others, since he enjoys delving deeply into a subject to learn all its secrets.) He thinks before he acts and approaches problems methodically, leaving no stone unturned.
His intelligence sets him apart from peers. The Professor the smartest in the room, but often ill-equipped when it comes to socializing with others. He’s inflexible, inhibited and insular. And he can be brutally honest with himself and others. It’s never out of malice, and it’s not personal, but it strains his relationships all the same.
However, once the Professor does allow others into his heart (and more importantly, mind) he is genuine and steadfast in his affection. He won’t wear any social masks or try and placate someone with half-truths.
The Professor’s strength is in his intellect or special skills. Every experience, every emotion, every physical sensation has been the subject of objective observation. He is thoughtful, but not necessarily considerate. *
Sheldon Cooper (The Big Bang Theory)
Sheldon Cooper is brilliant, eccentric and accustomed to being the smartest man in the room. He is proud of his mind and takes comfort in comic books, academia, theoretical physics, and the equations that form his world.
He grew up in small-town Texas with a family that supported his love for science and intellectual pursuits, but never quite understood it. That was alright, because Sheldon isn’t in the habit of explaining himself. In his mind, everyone should be able to put two and two together and use logic, just like he does.
Sheldon can be inflexible (“That’s my spot.”) and too caught up in his mind to invite others into his life. He’s not one to party or socialize with new people on purpose and he’s very set in his ways. But he is genuine in his affection towards his small group of friends and will push himself to express that, uncomfortable as he finds it, to show his appreciation for them.
Oh, and Sheldon’s hero, Spock (Leonard Nimoy!), is another Professor.
Dr. Temperance Brennan (Bones)
Temperance “Bones” Brennan is THE expert in forensic anthropology. She works at the Jefferson Institute, aiding law enforcement with her mind and extensive laboratory. She’s a “squint” as Booth says, always analyzing things under a microscope.
Now wait, you may say, shouldn’t Bones be classified as a Librarian? While it’s true the Librarian is the heroine counterpart to the Professor, they operate differently. The Librarian archetype is a prim rule-follower and Bones always questions social norms, customs and behaviors..
Despite her expertise, Bones isn’t adept in social situations with people who are actually…alive. She’s not interested in small talk or pretending to be someone she’s not. She calls it like she sees it. She’s practical, rational and believes in what she can see and analyze. This leads her to clash with her partner, Booth, over and over on topics like loyalty, honor and religion.
Bones is also isolated by her work. It consumes her world and her past. She can’t let the mystery of her parents’ disappearance go unsolved. To her, each investigation is a puzzle to be solved.
Edwin Jarvis (Agent Carter)
Jarvis is absolutely bewildered by the spontaneity and gut instincts of Peggy Carter and Howard Stark. He is a man of caution, logic and precision. While he is perfectly capable of holding his own in a fight, Jarvis rarely thinks it prudent and prefers to stay far away from the action.
Jarvis continuously surprises those around him with his immense knowledge. He knows Morse code. He knows how to deactivate weapons of mass destruction. He can bake a soufflé . He somehow always knows what to do (a trait that survives him decades later – Tony Stark’s AI is called Jarvis, after all) to help his team.
Interestingly, Jarvis is more socially adept than the usual Professor. He operates in a system of etiquette, but remains quite reserved in social interactions. He has trouble expressing his feelings to others, but Jarvis is absolutely faithful to his wife, the Starks and “Miss Carter.”
*This series is based on The Complete Writer’s Guide to Heroes & Heroines: Sixteen Master Archetypes by Tami D. Cowden, Caro LaFever and Sue Viders.