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Don Quixote and Sancho Panza unsuccessfully
confront windmills. By Gustave Doré
A sidekick is a stock character, a close companion who assists a partner in a superior position.

According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the term is a back formation from side-kicker, which has the same meaning. Despite appearances, it is not a sports term; neither form has any history outside of the meaning of "companion, buddy, friend".

In fiction, the term sidekick most commonly referred to assistants to heroes, usually in a crimefighting capacity. The sidekick has the artistic function of playing against the hero, often contrasting in skill, asking the questions the reader would ask, or performing functions not suited to the hero.

Those functions may include being funny. The comic sidekick was a common feature in westernss, where Fuzzy Knight, Al "Fuzzy" St. John, and Andy Devine had longer careers than some of the heroic singing cowboys for whom they took pratfalls.

Famous fictional sidekicks include:

Note: The Lone Ranger and Green Hornet radio programs were produced by the same organization. In the back story the Lone Ranger was the Green Hornet's uncle.

SideKick was a computer program for DOS from Borland.