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#villains
Would you be interested in writing a snippet about a somewhat arrogant but powerful protagonist who attracts the attention of the villain, and because of this, the villain attacks their city in order to draw them out again, but the protag's allies blame hero for it because they were being so arrogant to the villain, and because protag feels guilty about it, they agree to be captured by the villain in agreement that the villain will stop attacking their city? ;)
This wouldn't have happened if you hadn't painted a target on our back!
The accusation echoed in the hero's head as they watched the villain touch down on the opposite side of the ruined square. The villain seemed the only clean thing, pristine compared to the rubble and dust and ash that surrounded them all. They all but sauntered closer, hands tucked into the pockets of their jeans.
The city guards shifted on their feet, exchanging glances, fingers brushing against the soothing tokens of their weapons. That was what the guns were, after all, against the villain. Tokens. Trinkets. About as effective as taking a plastic toy sword onto an actual battlefield.
"As per our agreement-" the mayor began, once the villain was in earshot.
The villain held up a hand, fingers a careless waggle to dismiss such insignificant words.
The mayor stopped talking.
The villain's attention stayed locked on the hero, studying them for a moment. Then. "Kneel."
The hero's face burned. "I don't think-"
"Yes, dear. That much is obvious to everyone."
The hero ground their teeth hard enough to hurt.
A whisper, sharp as a hornet's sting, rustled through the small team chosen for the handover and the more daring press who hovered on the edges with their cameras and recording equipment. All live.
The villain didn't bother to so much as raise a brow in the crackling silence that followed, simply observing the hero.
The hero's fists clenched, but they folded, dropping to their knees. Head bowed. They hoped the public, and the villain, would take the last as a sign of subservience - of playing along with the deal - more than hiding. The latter, though more true, felt cowardly.
"Tell them you were wrong to try and fight me," the villain said.
"That wasn't our deal." It came out raspy. "I just said I'd let you take me." The last part came out louder, more defiant, as if the villain couldn't have taken them if the hero didn't let them.
It wasn't a lie, the hero didn't think, even now.
The villain took a step closer, leaning down to press their lips to the hero's ear. "You want me to do that in front of everyone, gorgeous? My, my.”
It took a second for the hero to even register what the words meant, because they were so busy forcing themselves to hold still, to not try and attack. A choked sound left their throat.
The villain, when their eyes met, didn’t even have the decency to look mocking. There was no smugness. Only the inevitable conclusion, the inevitable victory, as if the hero’s loss wasn’t even worth gloating about.
“I was wrong,” the hero said, “to try and fight you.”
“Why?” For all the world, the villain genuinely sounded like they wanted the hero to learn the error of their ways.
“Because people got hurt.” The shame and guilt of it crumpled in the hero’s throat. “People I promised to protect. I failed them.”
“Try again.”
The hero shot a glance back at their allies, hoping someone might step up, might remind the villain that the deal wasn’t humiliation. It was surrender.
No one said anything, not even those who the hero had considered their closest friends. If anything, they looked like they approved, like the hero was the one being justly punished. As if it hadn’t been the villain who decimated their city! As if the villain wasn’t the true monster here. Still, the hero had agreed, and helped orchestrated the deal, for a reason.
They would hand themselves over, not try and escape or kill the villain…and in return the city and everyone in it would be safe.
That didn’t mean they knew what the villain wanted them to say though.
The villain sighed, and let go of their chin. They pivoted on the spot, addressing the surrounding crowd, the cameras, the world.
“Because,” the villain said, spreading their arms, “you were arrogant. Because you thought you could challenge me, and win. Because.” They turned to the hero again, and there was something vicious to their tone now, “you are a big fish in a tiny pond and it’s about time you learned your place, don’t you think?”
There were many things the hero could have said: you wouldn’t have gone to all of this effort if I was the nothing you are trying to make me out to be, or are you done, yet?, or I suppose it takes one to no one, doesn’t it?
They said none of it. Because their city, their home, was a smouldering wreck and the hero had never meant for it to happen, but it still felt like all their fault. They looked down at the hands, grimy from battle still, and felt the tears well up.
The villain sighed, and when they spoke their voice was one more cordial, pleasant even, as they addressed the silent mayor still dumbstruck with terror.
“Pleasure doing business with you.”
They signed the papers, and whisked the hero away.
It was only when they were alone that the villain deigned to look at the hero again, and that strange something was back in their expression.
“Because,” the villain said softly, and cupped the hero’s face in the back of the jet, “the world does not forgive the mistakes of powerful people, and its heroes even less so. Because we are strong, and they hate it. Because to crucify a god for their sins and their salvation is all they know and it is a bad way to go.”
“Just like you told me it would.”
“You should never have wasted your time fighting for ants. They are inferior.”
The villain let go, leaned back in their chair, and smiled.
“But, now, you’re finally mine.”
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neon-junkie · 2 days ago
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i hope all my villain fuckers are having a very evil and sexy evening
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hey, whats your personal least favourite take from antis?
"This character doesn't deserve a sad backstory nor their complexity because I dislike them. Therefore, I'm going to pretend none of that exists."
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herochan · a day ago
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The Joker
Art by Rodrigo Rezende || IG
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koshercosplay · 9 months ago
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Idk why but villains with standards will always be the funniest thing to me. like you'll get someone who will take absolute pleasure in doing the most vile things but paying their minions less than minimum wage? how dare you insult their honor. there'll be a guy who just loves terrorizing people but if you say something sexist about his sidekick he'll punch you in the throat and step aside with glee to let her pummel you. villains who are like "murder is fine generally but if you're a homophobe then I'll tie you to a boulder and catapult you into the ocean". Idk there's just something innately hilarious about a villain who is very definitively bad, like extremely morally reprehensible, but like there are just certain things that even they won't stoop to, thereby implying that those who do are worse
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eli-zab3th · 4 months ago
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where is my morally grey villain that pushes me against a wall and threatens me with a knife looking me in the eyes after their eyes lingered on my lips for just a split second?
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wine4thewin · a day ago
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Okay, finally slogged my way through The Punisher S2 and for the life of me, I cannot understand why they crapped so bad on Jigsaw’s character. Spoiler warnings!
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In the first season, we meet Billy and learn:
he’s a tragic foster system case that has mommy issues, attachment issues, experienced horrid child abuse, and has a general sense of needing power and glory to hide his own feelings of being ‘worthless’.
He gets laid. A lot. Women are literally powerless in the face of his prowess.
He’s narcissistic, possibly sociopathic, an effortless liar, torments his mom in her nursing home
The best relationship/closest thing to family/normal he ever had was Frank Castle & Frank’s family. In S2, he even says he loved them and seems to genuinely believe it.
Betrays Frank Castle & Fam for power suits, a slick office job, and really nice hair.
Okay, okay, I guess I can get on board with that, cuz he’s such a damaged individual and is as good at killing people as Frank is, but like, without morals…
However. S2 goes and craps on it.
Billy gets to start over with his whole “started at the bottom now I’m here” sh#t, creating a crime brotherhood to gain money and power. Again.
Everyone realizes he’s Stone Cold Crazy AF and always has been. Human lives are nothing to him.
He acquires another hot babe to bang. Scarred-up, butt naked times ensue. A lot. They both like pain, no surprise.
Seems about right so far, until-
The kicker: Billy decides to give up his life of power, crime and greed because Hot Shrink says she loves him & wants them to run away together. Will also forget Frank Castle, the dude he obsessed over all season, who he literally just effed over. Again. which we all know is a death sentence in this town. All Because love.
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Okay, if Billy Russo so easily decided to give up power and greed for someone who says they love him, WHY did he betray Frank Castle & Fam? The people who cherished him as family, as their own? Frank, who he loved as a brother or more?
If love mattered to Billy that much, he would have said “ain’t nobody screwing my homeboy, not for no fancy suit. Frankie, we gotta off these dudes, stat.” Instead, he is complicit in the murder of Frank’s family. Love couldn’t beat his greed.
In S1, they showed us that Billy Russo doesn’t value love and friendship above power. In S2, he throws away power for love, completely invalidating the flimsy reasons they give us for his original betrayal of Frank.
S2 is possibly the most frustrating thing I have ever seen 😩
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enigmaticpink · 10 months ago
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👆
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theseus-shipper · 5 months ago
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To Whom It May Concern
It has come to my attention that some of you have been enjoying media that the OAF (Organization Against Fun) has deemed Problematic™.
This is unacceptable.
The frankly appalling behavior in question is exemplified by, but not limited to, engaging with themes not suitable for five year olds, speaking about or writing complex characters without constantly emphasizing how evil they are, and creating fanworks that do not appeal to me personally without asking for my permission or begging for my forgiveness.
Since you people do not possess my superior intellect, you have thus misinterpreted the phrase "thinking critically" to mean "analyzing and interpreting a work" instead of the correct definition "nitpicking perceived flaws". Fear not, you will be re-educated.
Aditionally, certain individuals, who shall remain unnamed, have displayed shocking amounts of empathy towards morally grey characters, or worse, developed a fondness for villainous characters who were written to be charming and dramatic. When confronted with my lecture about how villains are evil, these individuals responded with "and that's very sexy of them."
The OAF cannot let this stand.
Instead of shipping Woke™ ships with a far less interesting dynamic, there have been various attempts to normalize, romanticize, fetishize, realize and caramelize illegal ships, which should be punishable by death as it is tantamount to a war crime.
Sadly, the AO3 (Archive of Our Own) responded to my reasonable demands for censorship by telling me to "fuck off or learn to use the tagging system for its intended purpose."
I must ask all who are currently having fun in their fandoms to cease and desist.
Won't somebody think of the children.
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marauders4evr · 7 months ago
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Disney just released a trailer for a Cruella de Vil movie and...
I cannot overemphasize how there’s a difference between making a book/movie to make people sympathize with the fairytale-esque villain who reacted to a personal slight in a fantastical way and making a film/movie to make people sympathize with the villain who is supposed to be an obvious metaphor for oppression and/or cruelty! (Note: You can make a fun movie about a villain, i/e: ‘Watch them burn down the world!’ but Disney always seems to go for the more sympathetic route, and if the amount of shots of crying-Cruella are any indication, that’s what they’re going for, here.)
Wicked? (I know it’s not Disney but everyone wants to be Wicked, so I can’t not include it.) Works. The original Witch was a minor antagonist with no real motives or real-world connections (odds are we’re never going to be chased through the lands by a woman wanting our shoes) and the Wizard was always canonically a lying showman, so having a book/musical where his lies paint her as the villain, and him as the hero, works.
Maleficent? On thin ice but still works. She was slighted by the society in the original movie, so as much of a Wicked ripoff as it is, it’s still a very creative analysis on the other ways she could have been slighted, plus they make her the real hero in the end, and, again, there’s a disconnect because odds are none of us are going to be cursed by the fae (though let me tell you, living in the UK, I’m closer than I’ve ever been).
I read this Lion King book series as a kid, and one of the volumes was about how Scar was really born with the name ‘Taka’ (translation: garbage) and how he was treated like shite by his parents, who loved Mufasa. That worked. It never excused his past, but it showed a sympathetic side that made you realize things aren’t always black and white. (This series isn’t canonical, by the way, though Kopa absolutely should be.) And, I cannot overstate this, there was a disconnect because no reader will be thrown over a cliff by a lion!
Even Twisted works as a clever indie pastiche!
But if you’re going for sympathy, you can’t use villains that represent real-life evil and oppression!
I saw a book, several years ago, that was like, “Do you want to know all about Mother Gothel’s story?” No tf I don’t! No matter how well-written it is. Rapunzel’s dynamic with Gothel hits so close to him that the palm is on the bricks! I don’t ever, at any given point in my life, want to hear that fictional abusive parent’s voice, because that’s absolutely not the voice that should be heard. (It’s the same reason I detest any theories about Frollo. “Do you want to know why this religious man abused this disabled child?” I’m good.)
They announced, last year, that they were making a spinoff about Gaston. Because if there’s anything people want to see, it’s the movie about the gaslighting, stalking, bundle of toxic masculinity. /s
Now, Disney’s like, “Do you want to know more about the rich CEO who wants to murder puppies? Do you want to sympathize with the puppy murderer? All she wants to do is murder puppies :(.”
I just...you’re not going to be Birds of Prey. You’re not going to be Wicked. This isn’t how you create sympathetic villains! SHE HAS THE WORDS ‘CRUEL’ AND ‘DEVIL’ IN HER NAME!
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Rando: That villain is evil and killed lots of people! Why do you stan them?
Me:
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lady-of-the-spirit · a year ago
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Villains who are in romantic relationships but abuse their partners are so goddamn boring. I want villains who are absolute bastards, absolutely villains, but who are loving and caring and attentive partners anyway. Taking over the world doesn't mean you have to treat your loved ones like shit.
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prokopetz · 12 days ago
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More favourite villainous tropes:
1. When the villain’s rationale for their bizarre scheme is perfectly reasonable right up until one very specific leap of logic that leaves both the hero and the audience going “wait, what?”.
2. When the villain hits the hero with a “join me” ultimatum that reveals they’re operating under wildly incorrect assumptions about why the hero is opposing them in the first place.
3. When the villain doesn’t recognise the hero because the thing the hero is trying to get revenge for totally fails to narrow it down.
3b. When the villain doesn’t recognise the hero because the thing the hero is trying to get revenge for is some unanticipated second-order consequence of the villain’s actions and they honestly have no idea what the hero is talking about.
4. When the hero thwarts the villain’s plan and the villain tries to play it off like they’re not angry at the hero, they’re just disappointed.
5. When the villain rescues the hero from some peril not because they particularly care whether the hero lives or dies, but because the villain is trying to make some obscure ideological point, and ultimately being successful is less important to them than being right.
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earthmoonlotus · a year ago
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I don’t think that every villain in the world actually thinks they’re being a good guy, but I do think that everybody creates a value system that justifies the actions they’re taking, and and I think there’s a difference between those two things. Not everybody believes that they're on the side of righteousness, but everybody has a way of justifying the actions they’re taking. Not every villain has to be a misunderstood hero, and in fact I think there are a lot of instances throughout history of people who were obviously doing the wrong thing and probably had an understanding of that on some level, but had some rationale or justification for it. A lot of villains in literature and media have these weird, Thanos-esque philosophies of what it is that they’re trying to do, and I think human motivation tends to come from more primal places than that. So a lot of the villains I write can be brilliant or clever (and, in fact, probably should be), but their motivation tends to be primal. They wanna be rich, they wanna have power, they wanna live forever. There's something deep down that is, when you break it down, not too complex. Right? If you look at the real world, the people that are doing bad stuff don't need complex motivations. They wanna rule the world! They wanna be rich! They wanna be unafraid that other people can ever screw them over, so they screw other people over. Evil is boring. Right? I kinda believe in the banality and mundanes of evil. Evil is just selfish impulses, which at the end of the day are really easy to understand. It's easy to understand why people do bad things. It's like "yeah, ok, you're selfish and scared and cruel, I get it". Being good is complex and beautiful and hard.
Brennan Lee Mulligan, when asked how to create villains for ttrpgs
(I found this quote to be really meaningful in like...life in general which is why I posted it here. When he said “evil is boring”, it felt like something clicked in me that I had known deep down but hadn’t had the words for.)
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neon-junkie · 4 months ago
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i cannot express how much i LOVE seeing people fawn over characters that you wouldnt expect; characters with super short screen time, characters that are considered unappealing, characters that are totally irredeemable, etc
like i am so happy that you viewed that fictional character, one that pretty much nobody else likes, and went ‘yeah, my heart belongs to them now.’
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litaratura · 5 months ago
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Making a Villain Richard III by William Shakespeare Look What You Made Me Do by Taylor Swift Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo Tangled (2010) screenplay by Dan Fogelman No Good Deed (from Wicked the Musical) by Stephen Schwartz Untitled Poetry by Stephanie Bennett-Henry mad woman by Taylor Swift
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