1. Dagolas
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    Dagolas Banned

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    "Good" Antagonists

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by Dagolas, Mar 4, 2014.

    In my novel I plan for the protagonist to gradually turn into the antagonist through his action and character development.
    Though that's not the problem at hand: The three main antagonists (antagonists to the protagonists) are actually not evil generic villains who are bad for the sake of being bad. I'd like them to have reasons for doing what they do:

    (Keeping in mind, in my novel
    Anonymous: Fight for freedom against Government, against Gangs for power territorially.
    Gangs: Against Government for not allowing drugs, against Anonymous for territorial reasons.
    Feds: Government. Against Anonymous for terrorism, against Gangs for crimes/illegallity.

    Mr. Black: Leader of anonymous. No one knows his true identity. He is emotionless and cold-blooded, but he does what he does for freedom, liberty. He goes to great lengths, such as terrorism, for this.

    Johnny "Twodicks": Named this for his radiation poisoning (which generally mutates, thus his mocking nickname). He is the leader of the major Gang, and has built a drug empire from his main drug, which enhances physical capacities to almost superhuman proportions.

    Henry Fawkes: President of England (they have become republic). He is concerned with London's safety, and so has barricaded the city center with a tall metal wall and an unbreachable Holo-Shield (Force-Field) around said wall. Citizens lack common liberties, and are under surveillance. Their e-mails, letters, lifes are monitored closely, and no one can leave or enter the city center without official leave.

    I find my antagonists too one-sided at the moment. How could I improve them?
     
  2. AsherianCommand
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    AsherianCommand Active Member

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    Give them reasons for what they do as you have said.

    I mean look at the most classic example of good antagonists. Tom And Jerry. I am not joking. Is Tom really evil? No he's a bloody cat! He's suppose to chase the cat.

    Just like in a classic story of a cop chasing down a man who doesn't think he did a crime. In the movie the fugitive why was Tommy Lee Jones chasing after Harrison ford? Because it is his job, and he is doing it for the right reasons. (It is only later does he change his opinion.) Techincally Tommy Lee Jones is the Antagonist in the Fugitive but then becomes a protagonist.

    Its why people love Golum, its why we love Boromir, because they are immensely complicated antagonists/protagonists. They do multiple things yet they aren't a classic example of an Antagonist.

    Look at your characters and make it so that it justifies their actions..

    For you I would recommend the book the The Demolished Man, so you can see it executed EXTREMELY well. This way you can get a feel of how to do an Antagonist properly and give character to them, and give them depth, and makes you slightly side with the Antagonist and know their motives..
     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2014
  3. Renee J
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    Renee J Contributing Member

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    The antagonist is only the character who tries to stop the protagonist from reaching their goal. You could have a story center around a criminal doing bad things and his antagonist would be the man of law trying to stop him from robbing the blind orphans.
     
  4. Dagolas
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    Dagolas Banned

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    Even so, these antagonists must be percieved as evil by the protagonist (and they are, at least to a "normal person") but doing these things for the right reasons.
     
  5. AsherianCommand
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    AsherianCommand Active Member

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    A story doesn't always have to be seen by the 'Good guy' or the 'normal person'. As those are all subjective.

    I personally would like to see that played with. A Good antagonist is neither good nor evil, they are a mix of both. IT must be you the writer who makes this.
     
  6. Dagolas
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    Dagolas Banned

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    But then good or evil are subjective, so he can't be one or the other. It depends on the reader.

    Anyway, I'll reword it then: "How can I make them have a reason for doing these things?"
     
  7. AsherianCommand
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    AsherianCommand Active Member

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    A person can be both good and evil. If someone kills another human being for the right reasons, some would see it as evil, but some would see it as good. That person is neither good nor evil. They are neutral. They might want to impede the main character from accomplishing this task. Thats why I recommend the Demolished Man, or Jurassic Park (The book).

    Are the people really evil for making dinsoaurs for money? Are the Animals really evil?

    These are questions you as the writer must answer.
     
  8. Dagolas
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    Dagolas Banned

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    Being a druglord for power is pretty evil.
     
  9. AsherianCommand
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    AsherianCommand Active Member

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    Really? Is that evil? Is that true evil?

    Is hitler evil? What is ethical? What is unethical?

    Think and read. This is what makes a writer good. Make people understand why, why are they doing this. What is the main reason they act this way. Maybe they are supporting people who are in danger. Just something to think about. I am asking you to think critically about the book and novel you are writing about.
     

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