So what is the difference between an archetype and a stereotype, literarily speaking?
The archetype, as opposed to the stereotype, is all of a piece.
My positive example is Buttercup and Westley from Princess Bride. She is the ultimate damsel in distress. He is the ultimate romantic hero who will rescue the heroine at all cost.
Likewise, Westley's romantic hero persona doesn't prevent him from having a delicious sense of irony delivered with panache by Cary Elwes (see below).
And yet, they never break character. Buttercup doesn't deliver any karate chops or run screaming from the palace in a fit of madness. Westley, even dead, never forsakes his mission. Likewise, Buttercup's intrinsic toughness leads her to mock her fiance even at the wedding while Westley's devastating wit allows him to deliver an entirely convincing denunciation and challenge to the evil prince/king.
|I think Shakespeare intended to go for|
|stereotypes in Taming of the Shrew. But|
|he's too good: he ended up giving us|
|archetypes and, therefore, people, instead.|
Because they remain whole and consistent, characters based on archetypes--Persephone, Luke Skywalker, Darcy & Elizabeth--remain memorable. More importantly, the psychology of their behavior makes sense. They don't do things because, hey, it's time for the MENTOR to give a speech, the VILLAIN to act threatening, and the HERO to demand a kiss while the HEROINE gets nervous.
The stereotype never moves beyond the annoying assumption that the reader will accept the behavior because, well, that's what a mentor or villain or hero or heroine does. The archetype, on the other hand, becomes the character becomes the behavior which confirms the archetype.
And archetypes are powerful! Well-crafted archetypes create interesting characters who capture their fans' hearts. They become more real than any amount of "well-roundedness" could possibly manage.