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Thoughts on Villain/Villain Romance

 
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MrAlexander



Joined: 28 Jul 2010
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 28, 2010 3:17 pm
Post subject: Thoughts on Villain/Villain Romance
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Hello all. I'm new to the site and I'd like to get everyone's opinion on something. Romance subplots between heroes are pretty much default, and even hero/villain romances have seen their fair share of use, but very rare is the subplot that deals with a relationship between two bad guys (not anti-heroes mind you, but legit bad guys). What are your thoughts on the topic? Would you considers such a subplot to be interesting and novel, and why do you think such storylines are so rare?
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TamAlthor
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Joined: 09 Nov 2006
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 28, 2010 5:12 pm
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Romance between villians can be used a a foil to show a redeeming quality of a one or both villians, ie:

The evil character(s) is/are evil and all, but they are loyal to their lover

It can also show how aweful the evil character(s) is/are

The evil character(s) is/are evil, evil and e-vile and will use the undying love of another to futher their goal but will drop the other at the first sign things are not going their way.

Sometimes the above are comunicated unintentionally through the way the characters treat their loved ones.

Relationships can be a great way show character development and advance the plot for villians and heroes.

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MrAlexander



Joined: 28 Jul 2010
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 28, 2010 5:29 pm
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Good thoughts, Tam. I agree, that it's a great way to show different dimensions of a villain.

One reason I like this as a concept is the fact that a villain who skulks around in an inky black cloak kicking puppies into orphan's faces and spouting off about how he/she hates everything good and loving in the world is at best boring, and at worst, cartoonishly laughable. Having a villain who behaves like a real human (or whatever sentient race they happen to be a member of) is always more fun, and loving someone is part of that.
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LunaRaven



Joined: 30 Jun 2008
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 31, 2010 7:31 am
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I think it also depends on the antagonizing force. Some villains aren't meant to be quite as devious as others(Like Horace in Ranger's Apprentice, who served as a brief antagonist, Clarisse in Percy Jackson, and Draco Malfoy in Harry Potter).
I agree that it can be used to further emphasize the evil of the villain or the softer qualities of a villain. I'm not fond of partners who are just evil together. It never seems to be written well. I don't mind characters who are evil towards the protagonist but compassionate towards their romantic interest. I don't even mind misunderstood villains who have romance. I'm just not fond of the idea of really evil villains like Voldemort,Saruman,Tael Riverine, or the hamburgler having out of place softer sides.

But once again, I think it all depends on the portrait of the villain your trying to paint.
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Vilya



Joined: 04 Aug 2010
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 04, 2010 2:06 pm
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It would be far to easy to make vilian/vilian romance very trite, especially if you do not want either of them to have any redeeming qualities. To make it work I think that your characters would have to be profoundly deep and intriguing. If it could be pulled off I think it would be amazing. There is a darker side to love and romance that is all too often unexplored. (Nine Inch Nails anyone). And I'm not just talking about a Twilight need to eat someone....I am talking about love that consumes and is more of a poison.
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MrAlexander



Joined: 28 Jul 2010
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 04, 2010 3:06 pm
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Good thoughts. One plot point I have planned for one of my future stories is to have the anti-hero (formerly the hero and on his way to outright villain) fall in love with his former archenemy's daughter once he goes over to their side. She's not all bad, but still very much a villain (to put it in perspective, she at one point harnesses ancient magic to send a cliffside village plummeting into a ravine), and I want this relationship to be pulled off well.
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LunaRaven



Joined: 30 Jun 2008
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 06, 2010 2:35 am
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I don't know--I've always found that the best romances are the ones you route for. For instance, I kept routing for Edward to eat Bella. And, seeing as Stephanie Meyer meant her novel to be some sort of modern romantic trajedy I doubt that was her intention.
If you're going to write a meaningful romance(be it between villains or heros, or a mix of both) you need to have your audience interested in the outcome of the pair. If you just want to make a romance for romance sake however, it really wouldn't matter how likeable the couple is(that is to say, how good their chemistry is. They could be complete jerks and still be a likeable couple).
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High Wizard of Silvinesh



Joined: 22 Jun 2009
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 10, 2010 5:57 pm
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In the mummy 2, I believe it was that one, they showed this very idea of a villian's love. It definately could spice up a story, and will give you tons to work with, go for it, see what happens and let us know!
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LunaRaven



Joined: 30 Jun 2008
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 11, 2010 1:30 am
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High Wizard of Silvinesh wrote:
In the mummy 2, I believe it was that one, they showed this very idea of a villian's love. It definately could spice up a story, and will give you tons to work with, go for it, see what happens and let us know!


The first two Mummy movies the are spifftastic! The last one...well, I'm still trying to forget that fanfiction contastrophe.
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Vilya



Joined: 04 Aug 2010
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 11, 2010 11:59 am
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I think that it worked well with "The Mummy 2" because it was a side story, and explained the motivation behind the villain. I think that it would be significantly more difficult to do that for what I supose to be your POV character. It is going to have to be more than a one dimensional "obsession", and it going to have to evolve as he turns deeper and deeper to the "dark side".
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TASB



Joined: 20 Jul 2009
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 12, 2010 12:31 am
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It really comes down to the moral benchmark.

In our society we have our scales of right and wrong dictated to us and enforced by the majority. This is something that is taught since childhood. What is right and wrong in one society will quite often differ in another society. If you then take a person from one society and place them into another their actions, which they have been brought up to believe are acceptable and correct, may be seen as wrong or evil. The treatment of women in Muslim societies vs. western societies is a good real world example of this.

We then have individuals within a society whose own moral scale differs with what is agreed on by the majority. These people usually become criminals and are outcast in general.

Stealing is seen as immoral. However is it immoral to steal food to feed your starving family?

Take it a step further to look at organized crime. In this situation we have sub groups of a society. These groups may be based around families (IE the mafia), or brotherhoods (gangs, outlaw motorcycle groups). Their actions are looked at by general society as wrong and even evil, but within their sub group they are normal, accepted and expected.

Violent criminals, sex offenders, and pedophiles are looked down on the most by society. They are the most infamous of criminals and almost all people would consider them and their actions to be evil. However within their own warped sense of reality they will often believe themselves justified in their actions. Their own sense or moral right and wrong is vastly skewed to what is considered normal.

The term rape and pillage is born of history. Invading armies would attack their enemies, take the wealth, rape the women and burn what they have no use for. These actions would be criminal in their own society but then they are invading an enemy they become normal. In today’s society international conventions and law fight these practices and attempt to impose a higher moral standard on war.

If you examined all these groups and individuals closely you would see they all have some or many people in their lives that they love or are romantically involved with. What is and is not evil is essentially determined by a line in the sand that says this is acceptable and that is not. Where an individuals believe in right and wrong sits has no bearing in their ability to love or be loved. Just because you are 'evil' doesn't automatically exclude you from that part of the human psyche.
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ThrillKillBill



Joined: 22 Oct 2009
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 12, 2010 11:27 am
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TASB wrote:


Stealing is seen as immoral. However is it immoral to steal food to feed your starving family?


Your question answers itself here. Stealing is immoral, (for the basis of this theory) this is what your learned growing up. So is stealing to feed your starving family immoral? Yes. This can't be dissembled, wrong is wrong regardless of outside motivations. However, that being said..... which would be preferable? To stay on the moral path and watch your family die or to choose for yourself to become immoral and save your family? This is a question nobody can answer for any other person and regardless of what anybody chooses it still has no effect on the initial question of whether stealing is immoral or not.

Now, you can expand this to include the Mob, twist it, turn it, view it upside-down and inside-out. Nothing is changed, it's all about choice and if you choose to go against societies deemed moral path then you are immoral in the society.
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MrAlexander



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PostPosted: Sun Aug 15, 2010 12:18 pm
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Interesting when you bring whole "cultural values dissonance" into play. It's true, that those who are seen as villains by one culture are seen as heroes by another. Our terrorists, as twisted as it sounds could be seen as another culture's freedom fighters. I suppose to qualify as "villain/villain romance" under those terms it would have to be between two people who the mainstream of their society deems villains.
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