Villains are the wall meant to be overcome by our protagonist. From those wanting to become a God by collecting x number of convenient plot devices (sounds pretty stupid) to stopping the hero from being the lead in their school’s drama production (sounds even stupider).
But my problem with most villains is that they are static, they experience no change throughout the story. Whilst not the main character, they are arguably the second most important character following our hero. Dynamic villains are interesting to read or watch. If they develop of characters themselves, you, the reader become invested.
Take the Joker from the Batman franchise. He’s a dynamic villain and keeps things interesting. Another villain that has changed throughout his plot arc is Frieza from the Dragonball franchise. In Dragonball Z, he’s the alien overlord that owns most of the galaxy, but in the sequel Dragonball Super, Frieza has changed to a scheming villain who is unwillingly allied to the protagonists out of circumstances. His inclusion in the recent episodes shows him antagonising, double-crossing, tricking both his ‘allies’ and his enemies. And then goes full villain on an antagonist … that didn’t end well.
In my mind, a good villain has a character arc that is a twisted mirror to the heroes. A hero usually has a low point before picking themselves up and become stronger. A villain should have an unbelievable high, but it’s tainted and their personality becomes corrupt and corrodes away. By the time the hero and villain meet again, their different people and their final encounter is a climactic showdown that brings all the themes together to create something truly spectacular.
Want more? I’m writing a novel called the Successor of Ramiel, where Zera and Seraph and many other Angels, Fallen Angels and ghosts collide gloriously :
Interested? Here’s a link to recent scenes I’ve uploaded:
- SORScene – The Meeting of Zoharian Bladers – Zera and Seraph meet, starting the events of the story.
- SORScene – Pearly Gates plc – Seraph reports the concerning developments to the Archangel Uriel.
- SORScene-Beelzebub’s Visitation – Valafar ruminate and plots with Beelzebub.
More available at http://www.oliverkerrigan.com.
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