Hello booklovers! I hope everyone is safe!
Be it Batman’s joker or Harry Potter’s Voldemort or Mr. Hyde from the strange case of Dr. Jkyell and Mr. Hyde or even Gollum from LOR series,villains have always been an integral part of our lives. I wonder how our lives would have turned out if there existed no villians. Would the hero still be as loved as much if he/she had not defeated the trouble maker? Whose enigmatic aura would we have tried to replicate during Halloween and fancy dress competitions? Would we still be battling out reasons for our most loved characters’ popular antics, if there were just heroes around? Phew! I would never like to imagine a world like this, let alone live in it.
You know I have always loved villains! More than the protagonists I have looked forward to the scenes which unfold the deep layers of the anti-hero in books. Do any of you also do that?
So this week I thought, why not have a discussion with my fellow booklovers on the same topic.
I can’t wait to begin!
The first question that arises is that, why do we need a villain in the first place. Here is what I think.
Villians highlight those aspects of our souls and minds that are deemed bad by the society and its rules of right and wrong. Sometime or the other we all have thought about exploring the forbidden loops. Viliians bring out the same things, a little more overtly. Also these characters are not burdened by the gravity of always behaving in an upright manner and can act impulsively and rashly without overthinking about the consequences, unlike our dear old heroes. I think this is the reason we seek out villians more than heroes and the people in the creative fields realized this long back.
What are the characteristics of a good villain? There is an oxymoron right there!
I always look out for these things whenever there is mention of villains.
1) The villian’s good/bad actions should justify his/her beliefs/thoughts. I mean wouldn’t it be a little awkward to read about a character who goes about bringing a chaos in the world without a ulterior motive in mind? We have enough fanitics around the globe doing that already, let’s spare the literary world,please.
2) A signature action or gesture with a good sense of humor. Imagine a world where Scar doesn’t have his iconic sneer, Joker does not find his jokes funny and all we are left with the hero saving his lady love from falling down the stairs, apparently and preaching good will. That’s a big no-no for me. We desperately need this side in our lives.
3) His/her extent of determination to achieve his/her ends. Probably the most important of all. Even our heroes faulter or lose hope in ascertaining their goals. Our villains however, know how much grit and determined it needs to wreak havoc or bring down the entire peace structure. They would never once look back once they have chosen the road less traveled by. (Get the reference? )
4) A complex character and a grueling backstory. What I wouldn’t give to read stories about villains written with such depth and layering supported by an amazing backstores. Heroes more or less have a generic story, but you never know what goes behind the making of an iconic villain. Change my mind, I’ll wait.
Do you sometimes feel villains are more relatable than protagonists?
Absolutely. However I feel, this is true only when stories are projected on big screens. I think books usually do not play justice to the villians. They are just a portrayed as bad guys to highlight the ethereal goodness of heroes, hence we fail to empathize with the heroes of the other side. On the other hand, the immaculate characterization of villains will force you think from the anti-hero’s perspective and change your stance.
Would you like to read/watch spin-off based on villains?
Haha. It would be a dream come true moment for me. Expect Professor Umbridge, I wouldn’t say no to a variety of villains. Scar, Moriarty Voldemort and Gollum are some of the villains I love to hate, so a definite yes for shows/books based on them.
Also now is the great time to start investing brains on writing some amazing female supervillains. Sone people are desperately waiting to read such powerful characters.
Share with me your views on our beloved villians in the comments section, I would love to read them.
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Until the next time,
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