Powerful Friendships in Fiction: Our Top 5 Favorites

Happy Friendship Day, Blank Slaters! We are excited to have you as our friend. Friendship is, without a doubt, one of the strongest bonds. It holds the power to transform and uplift. There are many traits to being a friend – but, the most important are empathy, trust, affection, and understanding. In Fiction, as in Life, there are some exemplary friendships, that have given us hope, in the darkest of times. Here are our favorite, powerful friendships in fiction:

Lenna, Tibby, Bridget, Carmen

Pic courtesy: Cosmopolitan

In 2001, Ann Brashares published her well-loved, YA novel, The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants. The story revolves around four childhood friends, and a magical pair of pants, that fits each teenager perfectly, despite their varying body sizes. It was a coming-of-age novel, that dappled with the significance of family and love. But, its most impactful theme was definitely the unadulterated friendship of four little women. The girls go through abandonment, rejection, shyness, self-discovery, and trauma of broken families. And, every time, in the deepest pits of their despair, they find the magical pants, which is a physical manifestation of the bond that ties them into a unit. 

Watson and Holmes

Pic courtesy: film screenshot (Universal Pictures) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
This is possibly the most classic case of a symbiotic friendship in literature. The two, slightly broken individuals, are dependent on each other, to function as a whole in the society. Watson humanizes Holmes, lending his unstable persona a firm ground to work from. Holmes brings a sense of adventure to the borderline aimless life of Watson, making his personality much more appealing to the rest of the world. They complete each other in a sense that only the perfect friendship can achieve. 

Tintin and Captain Haddock

Pic courtesy: Thibaut Demare via Flickr (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/)

This is one of the most unlikely friendships in the history of fiction. The ‘older’ Captain’s drunk alter ego is much less mature than the young reporter/adventurer hero. Yet, they learn to trust each other with their lives, in the face of grave danger. Tintin comes in Haddock’s life as a buoy, in his losing battle against alcoholism. Tintin’s companionship, and the great adventures they share together, replace alcohol in his life. He repays the debt with unfettered loyalty, and a sense of guardianship to the young friend.

Calvin and Hobbes

Sometimes, anthropomorphic stuffed tigers make the best friends. Calvin is not your quintessential ‘boy next door’, and his best friend is no ordinary feline. The most refreshing thing about their friendship is the absolute candor. They are never mincing words. Yes, of course Hobbes is a creation of Calvin’s active imagination. But, in the words of a wise wizard, just because something is inside our head, “why on earth should that mean that it’s not real?” In Hobbes, young Calvin found a friend, philosopher, and guide – that’s more than some of us manage in a lifetime.

Frodo and Sam 

This is one of the most inspiring literary friendships of all times. It started as a ‘master/server’ relationship to begin with, Sam having agreed to travel as the caretaker companion of the Hobbit hero. But, the relationship evolved to legendary heights, as the two little men undertook an arduous journey, in the face of death. Frodo is inherently brave, a characteristic not very common in his race. Sam is not, at least not to begin with. But, in his association with Frodo, and in his loyalty towards his friends, Sam finds such limitless courage and strength, that he transforms as a man. He finds confidence, acceptance, and empathy from Frodo. In exchange, he is a rock and a life force in the darkest of times. Like Neville, he has the courage to stand up to Frodo, when the need arises. Till the very end, Sam inspires the best in his dear friend, helping him stay sane and human, even when under the nastiest influences. Theirs is truly a magical friendship.

Which other fictional friends would you like to see in this list? Comment below or write to us at editor@blankslatechronicles.com



About Anumita Ghosh

Anumita believes her calling has to do with the written words. She loves to write and read, and has recently given up a(n) (almost) rocking career in the Corporate to pursue her passion. Yes, she is slightly off her rocker, but then the society has been largely accepting of her madness. She is the co-founder of Blank Slate Chronicles and a struggling domestic apprentice, not to mention a loving (yet inadequately skilled) mother to a toddler.

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