MBTI in Fiction

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Rick Blaine

Requested by nitrateglow

Personality Type: ISTJ

Dominate Function: Introverted Sensing

It is safe to say that Rick Blaine is nostalgic.  It is his attachment to the past that becomes a central conflict in Casablanca.  He remembers things vividly, stirring up old emotions and sentiment with it.  He has learned from experience, working for the underdogs in war, and is decidedly neutral during his time in Casablanca.  He struggles to let go of his past scars, between his broken heart over Ilsa, and his wounds over taking losing sides him battles.  We see Rick drink heavily and wallow in his past, which says a lot about how much his introverted sensing side consumes him.

Auxiliary Function: Extroverted Thinking

Rick often comes across as cold to the patrons of his club.  He always has justifications for what he does, and not a lot of patience or sympathy for people.  He interacts with the world around him through categorizing it, and organizing it, giving him the ability to run his club, give orders, and negotiate shrewdly.  He makes plans and allies, and keeps a cool head when dealing with the diverse political sides that come by the club.  He uses his past experience to form strong opinions about the world around him.  He rests on this objectivity during his particularly isolationist period, particularly when he betrays Lazlo to leave Casablanca with Ilsa for himself.  He has the good sense to smooth over his departure as much as possible with the authorities beforehand, and then orchestrate the switch with Victor.

Tertiary Function: Introverted Feeling

Rick has a strong sense of right and wrong, which is why he has such a romantic side and sentimental side.  He takes the side of underdogs, and does things to satisfy his internal set of values.  It is his introverted feeling side that makes him help a couple win enough money to leave Casablanca, and it is the same function that makes him so reluctant to help out Ilsa after she betrayed him so badly.  He doesn’t care much for making others happy or comfortable, which is what makes him abrasive, but his feeling side is actually very developed.  It is his internal feelings that have been wounded so many times, he tries for much of the film to shut them out.

Inferior Function: Extroverted Intuition

Rick has a hard time seeing alternative options.  He does not look for tricky ways to get out of situations, everything is straightforward with him, black or white.  His intuition is his least developed function, but when he does use it, it is to imagine a world where situations might have been different.  He entertains the thought that he could get back with Ilsa for a short time, but his Sensing function overcomes it, because he knows it is only a fantasy that Victor could ever leave the picture entirely.

Hogwarts House: Gryffindor

Rick Blain is a romantic, and does what he does on principal.  He gets and idea in his head of what is right, then he acts on it.  This gives him significant sympathy for underdogs, and joining causes to fight aggressors.  It is this sympathy that gets him wounded so many times, to the point where he tries to repress his instincts of loyalty, bravery and conscious.  He becomes isolationist during his time in Casablanca, but inevitably ends up reverting to his natural inclination for martyrdom and doing the ‘right thing’.  He doesn’t think he’s good at “being noble” but still thinks “the problems of three little people, don’t amount to a hill of beans.”