- “You are one dynamite gal.”
- ―Felix to Calhoun
Sergeant Calhoun is the secondary tritagonist of Disney's 2012 animated feature film Wreck-It Ralph and its 2018 sequel. She serves as the non-playable protagonist of the first-person shooter game Hero's Duty, where she must fend off monsters known as the Cy-Bugs. Calhoun was programmed with "the most tragic backstory ever", rendering her stoic and no-nonsense. She ironically finds herself teaming up with the ever-cheerful Fix-It Felix on his journey to find Wreck-It Ralph, after the latter accidentally unleashed the Cy-Bugs upon the arcade during his game-jumping adventures.
Template:Dialogue2 Calhoun originates from Hero's Duty, one of the more recent games of Litwak's Arcade. During gameplay, she is the head of a sect of which the player is a new recruit. In pursuit of the Medal of Heroes, Calhoun acts as the interactive guide for the first-person shooter, leading them through waves of Cy-Bugs while offering in-game intel.
According to her cohort, Kohut, Calhoun has been programmed with "the most tragic backstory ever." On the day of her wedding to her true love, Dr. Brad Scott, Calhoun forgot to complete one of her highly important perimeter checks. As a result, a Cy-Bug broke into the wedding chapel as they were exchanging their vows and devoured Brad, Calhoun screaming in anguish as she grabbed a mini-gun nearby and opened fire on the monster. The tragedy left Calhoun with a hardened heart and bitter outlook on life.
Unlike the other video game characters whose jobs are over once the arcade closes, Calhoun and her troops play a crucial role in the survival of their world: the Cy-Bugs in Hero's Duty have a defect in their programming that leads them to believe their roles in the game are real. As such, their only instincts are to kill and consume anything in their path. Should they ever escape Hero's Duty, the entire arcade would be put in grave danger. This nonstop struggle also plays a role in Calhoun's excessively serious demeanor.
- In the sci-fi battle zone of Hero's Duty, Sergeant Calhoun is more than just a pretty face — she is the tough-as-nails, take-charge leader who fights for humanity's freedom. When she's not offering in-game intel, she's training her troops for the next attack wave. This unrelenting commander is driven by a personal vendetta and will stop at nothing to protect the player and the arcade from a virulent Cy-Bug invasion.
According to director Rich Moore, Sergeant Calhoun was initially written as a male character. The gender flip occurred because Moore felt that a male action hero was an overdone concept. When the animators later encountered difficulties with translating Felix's 8-bit appearance into a more contemporary aesthetic, it was noticed that his 3D model was easier to design when he was alongside Calhoun, which led to the idea of pairing them up romantically.
Calhoun went through a number of design changes. In some iterations, she had skin camouflage. In others, she had raven hair and a predominately blue suit. She was also a cyborg at one point.
Calhoun is hardcore, tough, and incredibly strict. She commands her troops with a firm and domineering hand and exhibits a fierce tenacity in which failure is never an option. She has no tolerance for shortcomings, and does not hesitate to roughly reprimand her soldiers, and additionally seems to enjoy goading them with taunts to increase their drive. Although Calhoun comes off at first as crass and callous, she is very serious and stoic when not engaged in gameplay. Her tragic backstory has left her heartbroken and untrusting, with a dry sense of humor. It is her backstory and her dedication to her job that she appears to consider herself a soldier first and woman second.
Against her programming, however, Calhoun is not entirely devoid of emotions such as sympathy and solicitude. For example, she is unwilling to perform acts of violence unless warranted as a form of punishment; she was uncomfortable with the idea of harming Felix in the Nesquik sand, due to the hero's innocence. Furthermore, her extreme devotion to duty is a partial result of her selflessness. She values the lives of video game characters and carries a majority of the burden of protecting the arcade, brought upon her by the Cy-Bugs' defect programming. When danger arises, she works tirelessly to prevent as much damage as possible. During the climax, she was ultimately willing to sacrifice her own life in order to protect Vanellope von Schweetz; the glitch was unable to leave the game, prompting Calhoun to remain by her side for as long as possible. Though rarely in a situation in which she cannot control, Calhoun is trusting towards others when urgency calls for an open mind. This is evidenced by her will to entrust Felix's plan to escape the Nesquik sand pit, and again when she entrusted Wreck-It Ralph's plans to save Sugar Rush from the Cy-Bug invasion, despite her initial (and completely validated) distrust towards the bad-guy, beforehand.
By the end of the film, Calhoun managed to open her heart to others once more. She moved past her programming and found love, anew, in Fix-It Felix. Her expression during their wedding indicates that she has developed into a much happier individual.
She also seems to have a dark sense of humor, as after Vanellope jokingly ordered everyone who was mean to her to be executed, she smirked and said, "Oh, this place just got interesting." She also tends to use peculiar phrases in her speech that directly contrast her serious demeanor, such as, "Flattery don't charge these batteries, civilian." and, "The Cy-Bugs would chew up that game faster than a chicken hawk in a coop of crippled roosters."
Sergeant Calhoun is a tall, beautiful woman who is wearing heavy, form-fitting black and red armor. She has a large bust, a slim waist, and long, shapely legs. She has fair skin and short golden blonde hair. Her hair is cut into a short bob plus choppy pixie cut style with side bangs. Her eyes are bright blue. She wears coral-colored eyeshadow and thick black eyeliner. She has long dark lashes. Her lips are a deep rosy pink. Of all the main characters, Calhoun retains the most realistic appearance and resemblance to a real human being.
Her general article of clothing is a suit of heavy, black armor that covers every inch of her skin, excluding her neck, face, and head. Several points throughout the suit are illuminated with red lights. A metal belt containing her blaster is held around her waist. At her wedding, she wore a white wedding dress with a veil.
- Her harshness and manner of speech (with lots of obscure metaphors) are very similar to the Glee character Sue Sylvester, that Jane Lynch plays.
- Also, her facial appearance is similar to that of Jane Lynch.
- Jane Lynch appeared in costume as Calhoun on the Halloween 2012 episode of The Ellen Show.
- It's possible that Calhoun's main inspiration was Samus Aran from the Metroid series.
- Sergeant Calhoun's name is not mentioned on camera until the epilogue told by Ralph. She is only referred to by "she" or "her" by her soldiers, and "Ma'am" or "one dynamite gal" by Felix.
- Calhoun's first name, Tamora, was only mentioned on her biography on the official website for the film.
- However, in Ralph Breaks the Internet, Felix calls her "Tammy", a nickname for her first name.
- Calhoun is the only female character in Hero's Duty.
- Some versions of Ralph Breaks the Internet had Felix and Calhoun joining Ralph and Vanellope in their journey to the Internet. This was partially altered to keep the arcade relevant, and due to the belief that having too many characters adventuring through the Internet would overwhelm the story.
- There were early versions of Ralph Breaks the Internet that showed flashbacks to Calhoun's childhood. Her childhood home had the appearance of a 1950s house, but with military weapons like bombs and fighting toys amidst her stuffed toys and diaper table.