Charlie gave up his son after he was born, out of a lack of interest in being a dad – and is still something of a risk-taking “deadbeat.” He persists in trading for robots and sometimes stealing parts, all in the hope that he can win a few thousand bucks, but he persistently throws his robots into battles they cannot win, resulting in their loss. He buys an expensive robot and within 24 hours, is selling him for parts, all because, as his son says, “You never think before you act.” Charlie has a habit of worming his way out of debts, making bets and skipping town before it’s time to pay up, something that comes back to kick him in the pants later, when a collector has him “beat within an inch of his life” and steals from him and his kid. Max says of his father that, when boxing, “it’s like you can see things before they even happen.” He urges his father to teach their new robot to “box,” because he was a champion boxer in his time; and Charlie finally does it, thinking tactically about what the little robot needs to learn (you’re small, so I’ll teach you to jab upward). When his audio chip goes out, Charlie directs him through his major fight by adapting and performing the moves on the sidelines. He does what’s rational, much of the time, even if it’s not technically ethical or very considerate; he may have lost his robot, but at least he got $400 for his head, right? He wants to sell his son’s robot, even though the kid is attached, and argues against him putting him in the ring with a much bigger robot (in a few hours, he’ll be scrap metal anyway; why not make a couple thousand bucks out of him now?). He also is willing to give up his parental rights for a hundred thousand bucks; he knows his boy’s aunt’s husband will pay it, just to keep his wife happy, and leverages a sad situation (the kid’s mother’s death) to his advantage. He knows how to play to the crowd and urges his son to dance for them, because people “eat that stuff up.” The more time he spends around his kid, the warmer he is toward him and the more he’s willing to do things for him. Eventually, he starts to care more about Max’s welfare than his bottom line. Charlie’s blind spot is he’s too impulsive, lives too much in the moment, and doesn’t think about the consequences of his actions at all, resulting in placing himself and his son in peril and his increasing debts.

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Charlie doesn’t want to be responsible for anyone or anything, and lives his life on the road, skipping town when his responsibilities become too “much” for him to handle. He didn’t want to be parent, so he skipped town; he doesn’t want to own up to his debts, so he doesn’t bother to pay them, and offers excuses to anyone who expects to see cash out of him. Rather than take responsibility for his son, who is left in his care, he decides to “sell him” to his aunt, take the money, and buy another robot. Charlie is always looking for a good deal and a quick buck, and doesn’t pay much attention to being told off about it. He is reckless, impulsive, and doesn’t think before he acts, often assertively taking opportunities as they arise. He can be somewhat aggressive and no-nonsense, forcing his kid to dig out a robot himself “if you want him,” and not offering to help, urging him to sell out while he still has anything to sell, and refusing to negotiate with his son… at first. Over time he starts to soften up toward him, and helps him out by teaching his robot fighting techniques.