Character artist areas, in-universe or IRL?

I’ve been dealing a lot with character artists recently, and had a question before I get too far… I’ll start with a couple examples:

in the anime Hetalia, all the characters are based on countries. for instance, you’ve got America, Italy, France, etc. (stereotypes abound, lol). in-universe, these characters are from their respective countries, so should that be reflected in their areas and/or begin areas? should one or both of them be set to Japan, as that’s where the characters were created/originated? all 3 examples above have had their areas set to Japan.

on the flip-side, Vtubers (or Virtual YouTubers)… basically, they’re real people playing characters while streaming, singing, all that jazz. some of them have character origins and lore different from where they actually live. for instance, Tsukumo Sana is the embodiment of space and was created there (in-universe), but she lives in Australia, or Airani Iofifteen, who’s an alien, therefore from space as well, but she actually lives in Indonesia. currently for both, I’ve set the area as where they are, and the begin areas as [space].

other examples of note include SpongeBob SquarePants who lives in a pineapple under the sea, Sandy Cheeks a friend of SpongeBob’s canonically from Texas, Blue Diamond from Steven Universe, and The Doctor from Doctor Who (another alien). and that’s only picking out a few from areas atypical for artists, like [space] and [at sea].


This is an interesting question. :slight_smile:

Since we clearly separate fictional characters, I personally wouldn’t mind using their fictional data. Just make sure that if the fictitious artist is linked to the performer, the performer has real-world factual data. An annotation on both artists may be useful to clearly inform unsuspecting users.

There is a wiki page for fictitious artists, but it’s not an official guideline and doesn’t give say anything about this issue. If we can come up with a consensus, we can add it there.

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If you are writing up a fictional Character with name, dates and history then that should include the fictional locations. The actor that plays the part will often change. But the fictional character still comes from their original place.

You mention Doctor Who. Well known to be from Gallifrey. They have been played by a dozen different actors of multiple nationalities and genders. Doctor is always treated as Gallifrean.

Interestingly, I notice with The Doctor they currently have their gender set to their “most recent” gender.
That adds an interesting puzzle for a database to keep track of. How do you track the genders of a time traveller who, being alien, probably should be listed as “other” anyway? This was simple until you brought The Doctor into this… :rofl:


Style / Artist - MusicBrainz says “For characters, use the country where the character was created”


Artist#Begin_and_end_dates says:

For a character
Begin date represents the date (in real life) when the character concept was created. The End date should not be set, since new media featuring a character can be created at any time. In particular, the Begin and End date fields should not be used to hold the fictional birth or death dates of a character. (This information can be put in the annotation.)

See also: