Assigning a color to a character is one of the easiest ways to make one character more distinct from the other. Here’s a guide on what personality types to expect based on a character’s color association:
Red is Heroic
A color often associated with the leader of a team or the protagonist of the show. Red is typically chosen because of how bright it is. It’s the most likely to draw attention to the viewer, and as the series’ protagonist, you’ll want them to stand out the most. Personality-wise, characters associated with this color tend to be hot blooded. They’re the act before you think type of hero. They’re impulsive and act on instinct. If someone’s in danger, you can bet that they’ll rush in without thinking up a proper plan first.
That said, red can also be associated with the complete opposite: Danger. Red is also often associated with danger: stop signs, fire trucks, the “stop” traffic light. Often times when a character’s eyes turn red or if they’re naturally red, it isn’t a good sign. It means danger. It means that something bad is going to happen or they’re bad news. This color can also be associated with an opposing force, the main antagonist, or the protagonist’s rival. Bonus points if that rival acts as the protagonist’s foil.
Blue is Secondary
Characters associated with this color are typically the co-lead, vice leader, or if the main character spot isn’t already taken, the protagonist themselves. Unlike red, the color blue gives off a calmer vibe. Blue characters tend to be the voice of reason. They’re calm, rational, and think before they act. They actively do their best to make sure that the protagonist doesn’t accidentally get themselves killed. More often than not, they tend to act as the red character’s foil and develop the closest relationship with them. If they are the main character, then they’re probably the entire group’s voice of reason.
While this is almost never the case in anime, in western animation, blue can act as the negative foil to red. They’re the reckless, impulsive one that talks without a filter. More often than not, they probably act as a foil that makes the red character/protagonist look even better by comparison. In these cases, it’s their foil that keeps them in check and acts as their moral conscience.
Pink is Feminine
If there’s only one female member in the group, expect her associated color to be pink. Pink is usually associated with romance, girly-girls, and the idea of “cute”. Female characters that wear this color are typically the most feminine in their group. They like typically girly things and participate in activities that serve to reinforce their femininity. Princesses, popular girls, magical girls, and effeminate males are the most likely suspects for being associated with this color.
Yellow/Orange is Bright and Happy
Orange and yellow are bright colors, not unlike the sun. Characters associated with this color tend to be just as bright and sunny. They’re the mood maker, the eager beaver that never seems to run out of batteries. Optimistic, cheerful, and almost always smiling, it hits their comrades (and the audience) the hardest when this specific character drops the smiles and giggles. Bonus points if their color palette suddenly darkens to reflect their mood.
Green is Eco-friendly
The green character is charming. They’re reliable, easy-going, and friendly. Since green is often associated with nature, they’d probably be right at home in the woods. If they have special abilities, it probably relates to plants or animals in some way. They’re typically easy to get along with, probably the most likely to be friends with almost every character present in the narrative.
Purple is Classy
Purple is a color originally associated with royalty, so characters associated with this color tend to be of nobility, wealthy, or possess a refined personality. They’re calm, poised, and reserved. They’re the smart one, the intellectual, the one who always remains cool under pressure and has nerves of steel. They probably drink a lot of tea. Everything about them, from the way they dress to the way they move, is both graceful and elegant.
White is Good
White represents good. It’s usually associated with someone of higher status than the protagonist, ranging from a parent to a higher being. They represent hope and all things associated with the word good. Often times, this character archetype serves as a guide or advisor to the protagonist throughout their journey. They’re pure and incorruptible, so if something terrible happens to them, be it death or the death of their ideals, it often serves as a major turning point in the story.
On the flip side, if the white character is evil or turns out to be evil all along, then it makes their color coding seem more ironic rather than symbolic. This especially rings true for villains that have good publicity or genuinely believe that they’re doing the right thing.
Black is Evil
On the opposite spectrum of white is black. These characters are dark, both in terms of appearance and personality. They’re the big bad, the current evil overlord that’s taken over the world, the foil to he big good white character. They’re evil in every sense of the word and it’s their life’s goal to destroy the protagonist’s ideals. On a lighter note, this color can also be associated with characters that try a little too hard to be dark and edgy. They want to to seem cool, and since the color black is often associated with negative connotations, then why not dress in all black to give people the idea that they’re not to be messed with? These characters are either genuinely dark, gothic, or emo, or they’re trying to seem dark and edgy.
Not all character archetypes mentioned in this guide are exclusively tied to a specific color. I’ve seen Red characters that are calm and Green characters that aren’t so friendly. What this guide does cover, however, is how the majority of media assigns colors to specific personality types.