Betty and Veronica are two comic book characters in the comic Archie. The two women vie for the affection of the titular hero, forming a love triangle. One would think that Archie would have a more difficult choice if both women were very similar, but no: they are dynamically different, with Betty being the wholesome girl-next-door and Veronica is the dangerous Vamp. One need only refer to TV Tropes to see that this is a common storytelling technique, seeing whether the hero will choose safety or danger, good or bad, light or dark. But as I’d like to point out in the following blog entry, this sort of character dynamic is much older than Archie.
I’ve read a lot of Victorian novels, and most—especially those written by male authors—have a tendency towards saintly female characters who are so very good and yet so very, very boring. Most of them may have upright natures, but they are helpless to stop whatever injustice is done to them or their loved ones.