Tweet of the Day: David Thompson’s The People of the Sea
He is the best,
He is the greatest.
Wait wrong show.
The Ace is th best at what he does, bar none and everybody knows it. Which is why he is rarely the protagonist outside of videogames where the player character is the Ace. If the Ace is so good (and he has to be in order to be well, the Ace) then you expect him to sail through any challenge. Creating a situation that will challenge him without flattening everybody else (unless its a deck of Aces) is difficult to pull off. It can be done, but it requires a fine balancing act between the Ace’s characterization (which is why many an Ace is broken) and those things (be people or environment) that opposes him.
The opposite is also true. We want characters (outside of horror or comedy) that are at least competent in their chosen field and are capable of adapting to new situations. It breaks suspension of disbelief if they should be dead, defeated or have given up a long time ago. Therefore the protagonist has the makings of an Ace and tends to be mentored (or challenged) by one, and as the story goes along becomes better at his chosen field.
Based on the stereotypical Ace Pilot, who in real life earned the title for shooting down five or more enemies. Ironically, many of them died in combat or in accidents.