1. Johnattan Goodboy
    Offline

    Johnattan Goodboy Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2016
    Messages:
    23
    Likes Received:
    16

    Most overplayed motive/backstory for a villain?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Johnattan Goodboy, Sep 20, 2016.

    I know that a villain who does bad stuff just for the hell of it can get pretty tiresome...

    However some reasons why villains become the way they are can get repetitive aswell for my own taste...

    Am I the only one who feels this way or some of you have that same feeling...

    If so what do you feel is the most overplayed motive or backstory used to justify the essence of a villain??
     
  2. Caveriver
    Offline

    Caveriver Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2016
    Messages:
    126
    Likes Received:
    54
    Location:
    Missouri
    Agreed. I started naming off a few I feel are overused, but then I deleted them, thinking of a good example for each one when it was well-done. I really think it's all in the presentation. Do I roll my eyes when the villain's excuse is "you killed my father, and I want vengence"? Yes, but only when the emotional motivations/reactions are superficial and only used as a crutch to get the plot moving. The most effective bad guys, for me, are the ones who make me wonder about/feel something for them. The "feeling" could be any number of emotions, just so long as he/she envokes something. This is NOT to say there aren't some senarios that are much less-used than others. If there isn't a fresh, deep angle involved, then I'm bored. Boring villains aren't terribly memorable...
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2016
  3. Cave Troll
    Offline

    Cave Troll Bite the bullet, do your own thing. Contributor

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2015
    Messages:
    3,799
    Likes Received:
    2,413
    Location:
    Where cushions are comfy, and straps hold firm.
    Greed. Power. Because you ate the last cheeto?
     
  4. Kara Gatsby
    Offline

    Kara Gatsby Member

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2016
    Messages:
    59
    Likes Received:
    66
    Location:
    Dallas-Fort Worth
    Bullied by jocks in high school and--horror of horrors--the girl he had a crush on saw his underpants or what have you.
     
    Elven Candy and Malisky like this.
  5. Safety Turtle
    Offline

    Safety Turtle Senior Member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2016
    Messages:
    167
    Likes Received:
    95
    Location:
    Vanløse, Copenhagen, Denmark.
    I actually can't come up with any at the moment...guess I only remember the good ones ^^
     
  6. SethLoki
    Online

    SethLoki Unemployed Autodidact Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2011
    Messages:
    596
    Likes Received:
    481
    Location:
    Manchester UK
    Villains have backstories? I have so much to learn.
     
    Cave Troll likes this.
  7. halisme
    Online

    halisme Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2015
    Messages:
    1,096
    Likes Received:
    696
    The hero or their organisation accidently caused, or was unable to prevent something bad happening to the villain or their loved one.
     
    Elven Candy and Kara Gatsby like this.
  8. Cave Troll
    Offline

    Cave Troll Bite the bullet, do your own thing. Contributor

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2015
    Messages:
    3,799
    Likes Received:
    2,413
    Location:
    Where cushions are comfy, and straps hold firm.
    The hero and the villain were a cute little gay couple living in a CA vineyard. Then there was
    a bad break up, and now it is on bitch! :p
     
  9. TheWriteWitch
    Offline

    TheWriteWitch Senior Member

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2016
    Messages:
    115
    Likes Received:
    107
    They all laughed at me then, but now. . .

    Anything that makes me pity the villain. I like a villain that claims their dark feelings no matter the origin. Being tempted by my own shadow self through their example draws me much farther into the story.
     
  10. Rob40
    Offline

    Rob40 Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2016
    Messages:
    101
    Likes Received:
    48
    Location:
    Colorado
    Dan Brown used the same motive in 4-5 or 6 books....man with power abuses power and meglomania follows.
     
  11. AASmith
    Offline

    AASmith Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2015
    Messages:
    290
    Likes Received:
    119
    Revenge
     
    Elven Candy likes this.
  12. tonguetied
    Offline

    tonguetied Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    May 23, 2014
    Messages:
    548
    Likes Received:
    219
    Location:
    Near Atlanta
    He had a bad childhood.
    Molested by a relative.
    Peer pressure (although that probably doesn't lead to villainy)
     
    Elven Candy likes this.
  13. Kara Gatsby
    Offline

    Kara Gatsby Member

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2016
    Messages:
    59
    Likes Received:
    66
    Location:
    Dallas-Fort Worth
    Sure it does!

    "C'mon man, all the cool guys are joining crime syndicates. Don't be a square."
     
    tonguetied and NoGoodNobu like this.

Share This Page