|Episode Eliminated||"Season's Greediness"|
|Relationship||Jacob (boyfriend at home)|
Christian (former mutual attraction)
|Enemies||Christian, Isabella, Frances, Graham, Kaitlin, Kelsey, Kingsley, Miles, Rachel, Roald, Suvir, Whitney|
|Talent||Navigating social circles|
Erica, labeled The Former Queen Bee, is a contestant on Total Drama Lakeside. She was placed on the Killer Wildcats team.
Erica was raised in a well-off family on the California coast and attended a high school filled with similarly well-off students. She developed a giant friend group with some of the most materialistic people on the planet, who resided at the very top of the school's social pyramid. They'd often flaunt their wealth around on social media, manipulate less fortunate students, and place all their self-worth in what others thought of them. Erica would neglect her schoolwork and other extracurriculars to go to wild parties with her friends, something her stricter parents didn't approve of at all. On the day of her high school graduation, she finally realized her friend group was toxic and she needed to change her ways. As a result, Erica has adopted a much different outlook since starting college. Her friend group is now a bit more diverse, ranging from nerds to hippies to general weirdos, all of whom she finds time to hang out with. She also broadcasts her feelings a lot more freely, no longer putting up an ice-cold exterior for the sake of popularity. However, she often longs for her more superficial high school days—which has led her to manipulate some of her college friends and deeply hurt their feelings without even realizing it. Erica has a boyfriend who's madly in love with her, and although she does care about him (and also loves the attention), she's recently had multiple intimate encounters with other men. She can be a great friend and a caring human being, but doesn't like to admit that.
Erica is a naturally competitive person and signed up for Total Drama just to compete. She feels confident she'll win due to her already diverse social circle.
- Erica was based on a former close friend of mine with a few key details changed. The friendship was deteriorating by the time I started Lakeside, so I thought creating the Erica character would be therapeutic in a sense.
- She was the most difficult character to write for in the story for a few reasons:
- For the first couple chapters, I wasn't quite sure what angle to go with—whether she'd be a redeemable, sympathetic anti-hero or a full-on villain. The villain angle seemed more and more like the right choice as the story went on.
- I wasn't sure how to navigate writing a character based on someone I knew so well, especially since most of my previous characters based on real people were more detached. I didn't want to ruin a fictional character arc due to any kind of bias.
- A lot of her scenes, lines, and general personality were taken straight from real-life memories. This was naturally a little awkward to write, especially the flashback sequences toward the end of the story.
- Even though Erica was absolutely the story's villain, I wanted to give her a multifaceted portrayal. Most of my previous villains were either one-dimensionally evil (Amanda and Trey) or pure comic relief (Layla and the cast of TDRev), and I tried to make sure Erica wasn't like that.
- However, I didn't want to redeem her at the end either. I toyed with the idea of giving her a true reconciliation with Frances and others, but figured that if she did decide to do that, it'd be for entirely selfish purposes (which is what ended up happening). I thought it'd be unrealistic and unsatisfying to give this sort of character a redemption arc.
- Erica was planned to get either 3rd or 4th place from the start. There was a period where I bumped her down to 7th, presumably because I was uncomfortable writing for her, but that clearly didn't last. I was less sure about how to eliminate her, but knew she should go out with a bang.
- A few people pointed out her similarities to Heather from Total Drama Island, but that was completely unintentional—Erica was entirely based on one person.