|Synonyms:||Background character, Reoccurring character, Recurring character, Secondary character|
|See also:||Main Character, Sidekick, Love Interest, Canon One-Shot Characters, Original Character|
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A supporting character is a character in a narrative who is not the focus of the primary storyline. Sometimes supporting characters may develop a complex backstory of their own, although it's generally to help the main character's storyline and rarely to help them develop independently. However, in television shows, supporting characters often grow with the main characters, sometimes even growing independent from the main characters and getting their own spin-offs. An example of this is Captain Jack Harkness, who appeared in a few episodes of the New Doctor Who; because so many people liked him, he got his own show, Torchwood. Another example is Andrew Wells from Buffy the Vampire Slayer, who grew throughout the sixth season and eventually had a reoccurring role in the 7th season.
In fanfiction, supporting characters are often included to give some depth to the overall storyline - for example by helping a character realize their feelings for another.