Nex has arguably become the most hated guy in the Boys Club. The fanbase calls him everything from a “bad person” and “Riven 2.0″ to a “jerk” and a flat-out “a-hole.” It doesn’t help that he has a harsh look to his face (his eyes look yellow in some shots). Plus, he tends to scowl a lot, making him look like he’s always angry or up to something.
I used to hate him, too. In my review of “The Flying School” (ep. 6X03), where he knocks Roy out of the ring during a training match, I called him and Thoren “hotheads.” Then he really ticked me off in “Bloomix Power” (ep. 6X04), where he sabotages Roy’s obstacle course run. Why he thought leaving him dangling from a floating platform would impress Aisha — or anyone — is beyond me.
Even though Roy bores me, I couldn’t picture Aisha with someone like Nex. If that meant Roy would be her new boyfriend, so be it. At least she’d be happy again.
But after watching “The Lost Library” (ep. 6X07), I started to change my mind about Nex. We see a different side of him in that episode: shy, love-struck, calmer, and in the end, disappointed. It felt out of character for him, although we didn’t know much about him yet anyway.
Now Aisha’s starting to like him. In “Mystery of Calavera” (ep. 6X15) and “Zombie Invasion” (ep. 6X16), she spends most of her time with him and barely even looks at Roy. Even in group shots, Roy’s off to the side or off-screen, while Aisha and Nex are standing together.
We know she wouldn’t fall for a jerk because she can spot one with her eyes closed. She trusts guys the least out of all the Winx. Plus, the supposed red flags about Nex — aggressiveness, arrogance, etc. — have been obvious since the day they met. That’s why she hated him at first, too, and even confronted him about his behavior.
Have we missed something about Nex? I think so. Nickbow didn’t mean for him to seem like a jerk. In fact, he’s supposed to be a nice guy.
The week before season six premiered in Italy, MovieTele.it published an article full of spoilers (you’ve been warned), including summaries of episodes 1-13 and descriptions of the new characters. (They published an article like this for season five, too.) Here are the first two lines of Nex’s description, translated by me:
He’s a slim and athletic-looking guy with long, dark [“anime black”] hair. He’s outgoing and friendly and often likes to make jokes and tease the Specialists, especially Roy.
Most of this we know already. He looks “slim and athletic” for sure, and he’s already started wisecracking and bugging the Specialists. And we can tell he’s more of an extrovert than an introvert. (I’m an introvert. I should know. 😛 ) The surprise, though, is the word “friendly.” The exact word in the article is amichevole, which means “friendly,” “cordial” (warmhearted and pleasant), and “non-hostile.”
If all this is true — like everything else in the article is — it sounds like Nex is supposed to be the cheerful jokester of the Boys Club, a bit like a “class clown.”
I found an article from March 2015 that says in real life, adult “class clowns” tend to be known as “wise guys” or, appropriately, “bad boys” (or bad girls). They’re also “more likely to be male, group leaders, active, independent, and high in self-esteem.” Surprisingly, minus the group leader part (that’s Sky), that describes Nex pretty well.
I think this proves he’s not “Riven 2.0,” as some fans see him. In fact, based on these traits, he and Riven are polar opposites. While they both like to tease the others, Riven tends to be more malicious. Nex’s wisecracks are annoying at times, but so far this season he hasn’t blatantly insulted anyone (i.e calling names or using put-downs). He seems to make fun of situations rather than people.
Also, Riven’s definitely not outgoing. When he’s with the group, he’s usually in the back or in the corner, keeping to himself. Sometimes, he withdraws from them all together. Extroverts, however, like being around other people, thus Nex is rarely alone. If he’s not with Aisha, Roy, or Thoren, he’s usually with someone else in the group or even a minor character.
Here are a few more differences between Nex and Riven:
- Nex is nice to Aisha. Riven — well, you know. 😕
- Both Nex and Riven are competitive, but Nex has shown he can curb his competitiveness when he needs to and cooperate even with Roy. Riven hasn’t shown as much restraint, especially this season (or in past seasons either).
- They’re both spiky-haired bad boys, but Nex is the more the playful type. Riven’s the angry loner type.
If Nex is really supposed to be friendly, he sure made a lousy first impression! But I think I know why. You know how Aisha always gets mad at her love interests when she first meets them? Sometimes he deserves it like Nabu did. (He stalked her, guys. C’mon.) Other times, he just says something that rubs her the wrong way. In “The Power of Harmonix” (ep. 5X06), she snaps at Roy for suggesting he go ahead of the Winx into Andros’ ocean since the waters are dangerous.
Nex’s “tick off Aisha” moment was more like Nabu’s. Everyone, not just her, was angry with him and rightfully didn’t trust him. And just like she ran off after catching Nabu spying, she stormed out of the room after Nex’s “little stunt” in “Bloomix Power.”
After this incident, he seems to understand he went too far. So far, he hasn’t done anything that dangerous or aggressive again. Plus, even after Aisha’s scolding and the dirty looks from her friends, he still helps with the Lynphea College rescue mission as he intended to in the first place. He’s helpful and focused once he’s there, and he even tries to protect Roy after he’s turned to stone — only to end up a statue himself.
Since I just brought up Roy again, I might as well talk about the love triangle now.
Like I said in his post, I think the reason so many fans want him to win Aisha’s heart is they just don’t like Nex. Since he comes off as a jerk, Roy looks like the nicer guy. But I’ve never read a good argument for why he’s better for Aisha.
There is, however, a good argument for why Nex is better for her: he’s practically the male version of her, like the other guys are to her friends. They’re both energetic, fun-loving, and competitive. They also love a variety of sports. The roller blade race and the windsurfing race seem to be what’s brought them closer together.
Also, if you look at Aisha’s character descriptions on Nick.com and earlier versions of WinxClub.com, a recurring theme is of her being “fearless.”
Season four official website: “I love dancing and doing sports, and I face every difficulty with no fear.”
Nick.com: “As the Fairy of Waves, Aisha is not afraid of diving headfirst into any challenge! She’s fearless, athletic and always looking for the next adventure.”
That same theme appears in Nex’s character description, too:
…Nex always wants to prove himself to be best at everything and challenges anyone without fear.
I also discovered something about their names. Nex is Latin for “death.” That sounds a bit creepy (and ominous) and doesn’t fit his character, but what’s interesting is how it corresponds with her name. Aisha is Arabic for “alive,” “life,” or “she who lives.” So put together, their names essentially mean “life and death.” Was this on purpose, and if so, what does it mean? I’m not sure.
Final thoughts: I hated Nex at first, but I like him a lot now. Unlike Roy, he stands out because of his personality and his differences from the other guys, like being a Paladin instead of a Specialist. (He’s also the first guy with piercings. 😛 ) I think he’d bring energy and enthusiasm to the Boys Club.
Yes, I want him and Aisha to end up together. They clearly like spending time together, and he seems more compatible with her than Roy. Plus, I like that they’d be a “mixed race” couple. I know we already have one (Flora and Helia), but it’d be something different for Aisha instead of always being paired with the darker-skinned guy.
Only one post left! Time to talk about the oldest member of the Boys Club: Sky’s cousin, Thoren. Stay tuned!