1. Gammer
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    Gammer Active Member

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    Villain Consistency

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by Gammer, Sep 16, 2009.

    So in my story the villain is a half-human half-demon who despises humanity and demon-kind alike. (They all treated him like a freak/outcast). He even hates the gods for making him a hybrid in the first place (and because one of the gods killed his mom). His whole shtick is that he wants to wipe out all three groups, achieve godhood and reshape the world in his image where he is the one and only god.

    Problem is in his organization I have him working with a wide verity of humans and demons. Which would be fine since he hates most of them anyway, but I plan on having like two or three human agents who he actually likes, shows affection for and becomes genuinely upset when the heroes defeat them.

    My question is, is that affection for those two or three humans an inconsistency with what I described in the first paragraph or this just proper character development?
     
  2. arron89
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    arron89 Banned

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    Depends on the reason he has for liking them. If its just cuz they're swell guys, then yeah its inconsistent. If they have some other reason that makes him think they're okay, then its okay I guess.
     
  3. tcol4417
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    tcol4417 Member

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    I don't think it's that simple.

    I'm going to ignore the whole demon/gods/myth stuff because you're not asking about it, so you probably... no, definitely don't want to hear my two cents on it[/prejudiced against aauuugh, shut up tcol]

    You're actually using a well worn and cornerstone mechanic regarding a villain's development as a character. Basically what you've got is a villain who has built up a serious level of mistrust and hatred for the world around him because of his mistreatment from everyone and everything.

    You can pick whatever origins you want - I like the "kids too innocent to be bullies welcomed him as a friend and grew up knowing him in secret" angle, personally - but the importance of his agents is that he trusts them. Be it a common goal or like-minded ethics, giving a personable villain someone to bond with is a must.

    Just make sure their reasons for being friends/allies/on good terms are feasible and you're set
     
  4. Joran Selemis
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    Joran Selemis Member

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    Some people make the mistake of thinking that villains are totally different from the other characters in the book, ie they don't grow and learn. They feel that villains should be a solid pillar of evil throughout. This is not true.

    Your villain amassing an army and growing fond of humans is pretty plausible. Whether it's because he sees humans in a new light now that he's grown up a bit or maybe because he can't help but respect them for whatever it is they've done, you are allowed to show the villain's softer side. Absolutely.
     
  5. Cyrano
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    Cyrano Member

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    He could be swayed by their loyalty, maybe even after finding out about his plan to have them all killed anyways. They could have sob stories about how humanity dealt them a crappy hand which the demon could relate to.
     
  6. Spirit
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    If you want to make him all twisted and interested.

    Have him want to hate them. that way, he does not necassarily need to hate them, you could have him convincing himself of his goals. basicaly have him torn apart by the side that knows they don't deserve his hate, and the side that craves someone to blame, and is prepared to kill to justify his existence.

    if you did that you'd have a properly messed up character, and those tend to be the funnest.
     
  7. luckyprophet
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    luckyprophet Member

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    It depends on how you build your mythology.

    In a simple good vs. evil mythology, yes, it is inconsistent: evil cannot love.

    In a "humanist"/relativist perspective, there's no good and evil, besides points of view. In this, it makes sense, for instance, that a god who wishes to destroy all living things so as to take the universe for himself, and make it new, might be considered evil by those who he means to destroy, but in his own view, he may love someone who will live to his new time ...

    It can vary on who's telling the story, as well. If the narrator considers him evil, the narrator won't be able to believe such being can truly love. It also depends on whether the narrator would be spared or not for a future universe.

    Now, if you imagine that the narrator could be one of the beings this god loves, the perspective seems to be different.

    Points of view.

    However, if the narrator is the god above all gods, this god who intends to take the universe for himself will never get along well with him. Then you have a problem.
     
  8. RyanM
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    RyanM Member

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    The way I personally, would look at this is in a view of what I as the writer wanted to happen in the story. If the relationship of said agents was grounds for how I wanted the story to devlop then, I see no problem with it. If my story was going along this line I would put the humans more as a loved "pet".
     
  9. AmandaC
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    AmandaC Member

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    Not so long as he dissociates them from those groups. It's like a white supremacist believing that blacks are a-holes but that his black friend Joe is the exception. It's all in the frame of mind you give your character.
     
  10. seije
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    seije Member

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    he hates humans and demons alike, correct? severe pessimists would seem to get along with him regardless of race/form/etc.

    "Ever really thought about how much mankind, as a whole, sucks? We're overly emotional, we kill each other over differences in opinion, and we smell funny when we're wet. No, wait... that's dogs. Meh, Dogs are man's best friend, so it's guilty by association, i say!" <--- something like that coming out of a human's mouth? seems like the kind of guy your villain would see eye-to-eye with.
     
  11. Never Master
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    Another route that no one has brought up just yet is to put on a facade of 'liking' the human individuals. Allow me to elaborate.

    Perhaps in this half-demon's world, humans are in control of the balance of power. If he needs to make his plans come to their inevitable fruition by making allies of humans then it is likely he might tighten his belt and deal with his distaste. That is, until he has no more use of them....

    That would most certainly keep the character consistent.
     
  12. stavious5
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    stavious5 New Member

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    The great thing about fantasy is how it mimics everyday life. Even though there are various races who looks different on the outside, and maybe have different magic skills, they all have the same emotional pane inside. Demons and humans both feel the same way, even if they ignore some of them, like love. There isn't an emotion they have that we possibly don't (unless you are really out there) so generally the answer can just treat the characters simply as antagonists and protagonists.
    If you feel that it would not suit your villan to symphasize with his henchmen, then it is probably out of place. Truely, only you can know because they are all your creations (the best thing about writing). If his moral ethics allow him to be occasionally compassionate then perhaps it is so. It could make him a much rounder character. Reasons could include a varrying amount of things, such as a shared memorable experience they gain together as the plot develops. Or a blood relationship is always a good motivator... possibly half-brothers?
    Generally though it is most important for you to know your characters's ethics, as these determine how they will act in all situations.
    Consider also that the feelings the boss shares with his subjects aren't pleasant ones. The plot could also be developed if he fears to be betrayed or usurped by one of them, or plans to have them turn on one another since he cannot defeat them all alone. Fear, loathing and disgust are still emotions.
    That's my input for now.
     
  13. Kio
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    Kio Contributing Member

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    There are always going to be exceptions for any character of yours. People can always do something out of character, that's what makes some of us unpredictable. So if your demon/human hybrid has made an exception, that really shouldn't be a big deal. But, as many others said, they should have something in common. They can't just be friends because you think they look good next to each other. They need something in which they share with equal value. Maybe they both hate humans equally? Maybe they both hate demons equally? Maybe they both love grilled cheese equally? Anything, as long as the villain and this human friend have something in common that is strong enough to bring them together.
     

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