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The overlord

Subj: It depends on the story they're trying to tell
Posted: Mon Jun 09, 2008 at 07:32:05 am EDT
Reply Subj: What is better: Evil Villains or Sympathetic Villains?
Posted: Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 10:14:58 pm EDT

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What is better: Evil Villains or Sympathetic villains?

> What is better: Evil Villains or Sympathetic villains?

Just depends on what the writer wants to accomplish in a story.

Sometimes you need a flat-out evil bad guy. Someone with no morals or compunctions. Just pure evil. In these cases, the heroes strongest noble aspects stand out in comparison to who they are trying to stop.

Sometimes you need a more sympathetic bad guy. In these cases, the heroes challenged with a more moral dillema and their heroism can be shown through compassion and character rather than just grit and determination.

Dr Doom works well as a bad guy because he shifts between the two types. When he's flat out evil, he's simply trying to gain personal power. Good guys simply must stop him at all costs. When he's acting on behalf of his people, he becomes more sympathetic in his cause (though rarely in his attitude). It's then not just a matter of thwarting his plans, it's also seeing to the common good of the people he was protecting while keeping his more selfish aspirations in check.

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