1. Theo Weatherill
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    Theo Weatherill New Member

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    Is it more effective to show the situation in the views of both the hero and bad guy?

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Theo Weatherill, Apr 10, 2012.

    Hi guys I'm sort of new here and I am starting a new fantasy/adventure series and I was wondering if it would help if I should include both the hero's and the villains views on their situation.

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  2. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Sometimes it works, some times it doesn't.
  3. The Tourist
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    The Tourist Banned

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    The topic surrounding villains popped up on another thread. I feel it's important to clearly define your villain. He's usually the more charismatic, he's sharper, has better clothes, better weapons and sometimes a cool gun moll like Poison Ivy.

    You can make a hero out of the odds and ends left over from other re-writes. Heroes are usually all the same.

    They're tortured, conflicted, they have a fatal flaw, they emote pages on causes and social ills, and foolishly work pro bono. I see a hero, and my first remark is, "The plot thins."
  4. superpsycho
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    superpsycho Member

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    Help who. i would start with what you know you can do. If you've done a lot of writing and want to experiment then feel free and see what you can do. I you just starting out then learn how to tell a good story and work up from there.
  5. Just Jon
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    Just Jon New Member

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    If it were the other way around, it would be a very short story about a badly dressed bumbling criminal with a wooden sword who is apprehended Captain Amazing who shows up in a tuxedo and kills the criminal with a 1.21 gigawatt gamma ray gun.

    :)

    If the stories were viewed from both the hero's and villain's perspective, it might create some sympathy for the villain and perhaps some disdain for the hero. Pushing both of them closer to neutral might be a good chance to set up some serious moral conflicts.
  6. superpsycho
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    superpsycho Member

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    X-men movies have explored both villains and good guys. Did knowing about Magneto make the heroes any less heroic?
  7. cuetip29
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    cuetip29 New Member

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    I'm doing this in my current project. I switch between a few characters, and one of them is closely associated with the villian. I wanted the reader to know what was going on at different parts, but didnt want them to be too close to the antagonist. So far, I like how its turning out. There's still a long way to go though, and by the end I might scrap the idea and stick to one character's pov.

    So if it works for your story, then do it. If you end up not liking it, change it or cut it completely.
  8. rubisco
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    rubisco Member

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    Yeah, I agree that it would make the the reader more sympathetic toward the villian, assuming he has some valid background and reasons for his actions. I think that would probably be the only reason you would want to have the villian's POV as well. You would probably be adding not much if you showed that the villian's reason for killing people was because he didn't like the color red or wanted everyone to die for no reason. But, yeah, you can definitely have some fun with views on morality if you do it well.
  9. Wolf0PHL
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    Wolf0PHL New Member

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    I think showing the villain's point of view has a lot to do with how much melodrama you want within your work. Almost every story with a villain has some point of the story that takes the villain's point of view, but, usually, it's very limited, and only shows his, or her's, irrational, and or plain mean motivations (i.e. money, petty revenge, or, as the previous poster pointed out, a hatred for the color red.) As a general rule, the more you reveal about your bad guy, the more people are going to identify with him. For example, if you have a seemingly heartless killer tracking down and killing people of specific family, culture, whatever, automatically bigotry is going to be ascribe to that killer. However, as soon as you reveal his is taking revenge upon a people that savagely invaded, raped, and murdered his own community, during his childhood, people are going to relate to those motivations.
  10. Cassiopeia Phoenix
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    Cassiopeia Phoenix New Member

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    Amen! I think the problem in the heroes I see lately is that they have little agency -- they don't do anything really. The things fall from the sky for them. Whereas a villain get stuff done because he/she is not bound to the moral codes. They will kill if they have to... And will blow a entire planet if they have to.

    To the OP, I think it would be a interesting thing to do, but I don't know anything about your story and it is like Cogito said. It might work... But it might not. You have to try and see if you like it.
  11. jazzabel
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    jazzabel I do not like snoopy reporter Supporter Contributor

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    double post for some reason, sorry! :)
  12. jazzabel
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    jazzabel I do not like snoopy reporter Supporter Contributor

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    In suspense stories it often helps to occasionally read chapter from the villain's perspective. It's a chance to increase the creepy-factor (like in Tess Gerritsen's novels). Other times, it doesn't work because it ruins the suspense (like in Agatha Christie or A.C.Doyle's novels, there's never a villain perspective).
    Personally, I struggle with that question and I usually answer it only after I've been writing the book for some time. Unless the point of the book is to show off the villain's perspective. But that's just me. Everyone is different.
  13. highwaymanlee
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    highwaymanlee Member

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    i think its a great idea. i think the more the readers understand the villian the more fun the story is so go ahead and do it if you dont like it get rid of it
  14. The Tourist
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    The Tourist Banned

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    You might be right about "modern heroes," but I cannot shake the feeling that wussery has moved into stories, even to my beloved Lord Vader.

    For example, look at the way he coddles his son. Luke is clearly guilty of sedition and insurrection. So what does does Vader do? He cuts off the sniveling little weasel's hand, a lowly punishment for common thieves.

    You hang a traiter, or draw and quarter him. Put his rotting corpse up atop The Death Star.

    I never thought I'd say it, but Vader is soft on crime.

    It's the whole genre here. Weak pasty heroes need weak pasty causes where even idiots succeed. You take a first rate villain like Vader, and what does he really have to do? I mean, The Death Star has a full crew of lackeys, you have droids to fix the common stuff like burnt out engines and plumbing. You bark at Calrissian and he folds faster than a box-kite hitting a slate patio. Palpatine has the real duties of attack planning, manpower projections and rebuilding severed limbs.

    So how does Vader rise to his full potential? His self esteem has dropped to the point where he admits that in the vacuum of a fallen Palpatine, he would need both "the father and son to rule the galaxy." Perhaps we need the Cowardly Lion to buttress up this Tin Man.

    Give Vader the cause he would need to fully contribute to the story. Perhaps 'courage' skips a generation like the skill of woodworking. Perhaps they could clone Luke's son for a rousing battle. Yikes, if they could just gene-splice out that "whiny double helix" it would be an improvement.
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