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Similar to the Dragon-in-Chief, the Lancer-in-Chief serves as the de facto hero of the story. Though he or she is nominally a subordinate to the "real" Big Good, he or she is just so much smarter, stronger, more skillful, just as pure if not more so (and almost always more iconic) that it's clear who's really the bigger savior. He or she tends to have respect for the Big Good due to their comparative lack of vision, courage or common sense. The Big Good, for his or her part, either seriously or fatally overestimates The Lancer's loyalty, or just too much admires him or her to be able to do much. In a nutshell, the Lancer-in-Chief is the main heroic driving force behind the plot, even if he or she did not initiate it, to the point that the Big Good is pushed aside by them, and rendered less important by comparison.
Examples of Lancer-in-Chief include:
- Hikari from Digimon Adventure 02, towards Daisuke.
- Eiji from Gravion can be seen as this, since technically speaking he is The Lancer to The Hero Touma.
- Mater from Cars
- Sparky from Frankenweenie
- Charlotte A. Cavatica from Charlotte's Web
- Willy the Whale from Free Willy
- Batty Koda from Ferngully
- Benny Rodriguez from The Sandlot
- Roger Rabbit from Who Framed Roger Rabbit
- Jiminy Cricket from Pinocchio
- The Player Character of Fire Emblem Awakening. Technically speaking, s/he is the sub-leader of the Shepherds who are led by their best friend (and prospect Love Interest for a Female one), Prince Chrom of Ylisse.
- Snoopy from Peanuts
- Oblina from Real Monsters