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A recent quote from Greg on the "Chat with Greg Farshtey" thread has caused something of a stir. In the quote, Greg says, "I don't really believe in redeeming characters, Orion. I believe a good villain is a villain for a reason, and they are not just going to suddenly turn good. They may do good things, but it will be out of their own self-interest, not because they have suddenly become virtuous."

 

This discussion is already starting to fill up the Official Greg Compendium, but there are a lot of interesting things to say about it, so I think we should move it over here into its own topic. The most obvious point of discussion would be, is Greg right? Are redemption stories inherently "unrealistic", or do people have the potential for drastic change?

 

I disagree. I don't think anyone is too far gone for a moral epiphany. It takes a serious push to change a person's outlook, even by a small degree, but it's still possible. I know this just from my (comparatively short) experience. I've made slow but steady progress over the past four years, but it took a near-fatal tragedy to spur my development of empathy and emotional bonds with my friends.

 

Enough about me. The point I'm interested in discussing is one raised by the person who asked Greg this ill-fated question: what would it take to redeem some of BIONICLE's villains? The OP cited the Barraki and Makuta Miserix as potential candidates for redemption, but I'm interested in hearing about any and all villains' possibilities. What would it take to redeem Ahkmou? Vezok? And if anyone's really ambitious: what would it take to redeem Makuta Teridax?

 

Both of the above discussion points, and any additional ones related to the subject, are welcome here. I think this is a very interesting discussion to have.

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I've noticed that Greg typically writes his villains in a similar manner. They're all ready to kill something, they all fight with each other (seriously, I wanted the Makuta to get along with each other. You know, like a brotherhood), and they all aren't afraid to do a bit of backstabbing. 

Because they all have essentially the same personality, even if they are redeemed, they'll still be kind of sketchy since it's part of their character. 

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Ahkmou just needed someone to tell him he was special. :P

 

And that Makuta Teridax was a liar. 

 

Teridax was beyond hope, I think. The only thing that would get to him would be having someone waaaay smarter and more powerful than him. Either that, or the Matoran losing all respect for Mata Nui for some reason or another and for him to step up with the answer. 

 

As for villains that got redeemed, *insert Krahka here*. 

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Brutaka comes to mind as a bad guy turned good.  Then again, he was a good guy turned bad, turned good.

As I mentioned in another topic, most of BIONICLE's villains, including Teridax, were like that. It doesn't really mater.

 

@fishers64 Krahka is a great example. That was basically what her whole character arc was about. I really liked Pouk's line about her sacrifice in BA#8.

 

I'll throw in Mavrah as another example, even if he doesn't fir it to a tee.

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Credit goes to Linus Van Pelt (Formerly known as Cherixon) and Spectral Avohkii Enterprises

My Memoirs of the Dead entry, Reflectons:

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Brutaka comes to mind as a bad guy turned good.  Then again, he was a good guy turned bad, turned good.

As I mentioned in another topic, most of BIONICLE's villains, including Teridax, were like that. It doesn't really mater.

 

Teridax wasn't really ever quite a good guy though? he was always jealous and always felt he deserved more than he really did. :0

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Brutaka comes to mind as a bad guy turned good.  Then again, he was a good guy turned bad, turned good.

As I mentioned in another topic, most of BIONICLE's villains, including Teridax, were like that. It doesn't really mater.

 

Teridax wasn't really ever quite a good guy though? he was always jealous and always felt he deserved more than he really did. :0

 

I don't think that makes him a bad person. Plenty of people are jealous and feel entitled, doesn't make them evil villains.

 

Though perhaps Teridax wasn't the best example, if the Matoran massacre is anything to go by (though an argument could be made that he was already far gone by then). That's fine; there are many others. Nidhiki (and a really big chunk of the Dark Hunters, at that), Tuyet, all the Barraki, etc.

 

Also, another character who aimed for redemption in Gen 1: Lesovikk, who felt he was no longer worthy of the title of Toa due to his hesitation, which caused the deaths of his entire team. Not really a villain redeeming himself, but a nice redemption story nonetheless.

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Credit goes to Linus Van Pelt (Formerly known as Cherixon) and Spectral Avohkii Enterprises

My Memoirs of the Dead entry, Reflectons:

http://www.bzpower.com/board/index.php?showtopic=7351

 

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I sort of agree with him; Teridax's story is made that much better by the fact his success only helped to actually further the original goal, reforming Spherus Magna. He would have been a far less interesting character if he has accepted Mata Nui's offer(s?) of comradarie, instead of staying true to himself.

 

I think people are confusing the statement of "unredeemable" with "not having any good or nuanced character traits". Plenty of good characters (good in the "cool, awesome, well-written" sense) have complexities to them that don't automatically mean they will at some point be able or want to be heroes.

 

Part of it's also probably the chronology of it; I'm sure you can make the argument that at SOME point a character was able to be redeemed, but I get the sense the quote is talking about someone we know and understand to be a villain at this point in time. Voldemort's background didn't make him any less of a sociopath, for instance, even if he did draw the short straw in both genetics and environment.

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In Bionicle, 'inner light' and 'inner shadow' are supposed to play a huge part in morality. I've always assumed that the point of no return was when a villain eradicated all of their inner light. Which everyone in the Brotherhood of Makuta supposedly did, making them irredeemable. But any of the Barraki, Piraka, or anyone else who still has some inner light should be capable of redemption, though it might be unlikely or take a very long time. (Whether or not all Brotherhood members should have completely eradicated their inner light is a different matter... I'd like to think, myself, that Krika held on to some of his, and just found a way to hide it from all the other Makuta.)

 

This should, theoretically, work the other way, too, I think. A character with absolutely no inner shadow, like Umbra or Alterdax, should be completely incapable of turning evil, no matter how much evil tries to tempt them. But anyone with even a sliver of shadow remaining can fall, like for example once-noble hero Nidhiki.

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There are a lot of people in BIONICLE who did a lot of horrible things.

 

They don't deserve redemption.

 

The Barraki tried to overthrow Mata Nui. That's unforgivable.

Miserix is only "good" because he didn't want to lose his leadership status to Teridax. He did anyway.

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There are a lot of people in BIONICLE who did a lot of horrible things.

 

They don't deserve redemption.

 

The Barraki tried to overthrow Mata Nui. That's unforgivable.

Miserix is only "good" because he didn't want to lose his leadership status to Teridax. He did anyway.

 

Sorry to say this but I feel that you're very, very wrong.

 

Right and wrong, good and evil. None of it is particularly real. They're ideas we create in our minds to make the world simpler and for us to be able to function with simple numbers. A person can do and say anything, but an individual is decided by a combination of their actions and principles. That's why "good" people can do "bad" things and "bad" people can do "good" things. Does it give us a right to see them so plainly, so blindly? No, we need to recognize the reality of things, not warp their images in our minds because we like to think certain ways. We still need to have values, morality, standards, but we can't see things in a blunt and careless perspective.

 

What angers me about your perspective as you have put it out to be is that it's irrational. There is no growth, no true justice, only revenge. I recently watched the Daredevil TV series, and every time I saw that statue of the blind-folded lady with a sword in one hand and a scale in the other, I felt a surge of anger swell up inside of me, because true justice, is not blind. True justice is about understand the reality of things from a multitude of perspectives to develop a real understanding. That view is so black and white, so unqualified, so careless, that it can hurt, even kill. People make mistakes, people do terrible, horrifying things, often on purpose, but does that immediately mean they deserve to sit locked up like a sack of meat? Is that really justice, or is that an off and not even complete prospect of revenge? It's an attempt to make them suffer for what they've done, make them pay for it, but the problem with that and with revenge as a whole, is that they pay for all those emotions, but the debt will never fill, and it will undoubtedly be a waste of life, a waste of opportunity.

 

Every individual has ability to do, to change. Every moment, infinite stretches and paths lay before each and every single one of us, and someone who has been said to have done wrong, say a murderer has no less paths that lie ahead of them... if given the opportunity. The disgusting, spiteful and careless justice people believe in now (which again, is masked revenge) likes to waste that possibility. It's impersonal, and unreal. Even one who has committed the worst of wrongs deserves to at least have the opportunity to work to make the world better, to recover from the "evils". Rather than coop them up, make them even more hateful, sad, angry, misunderstood, we work together, change the individual. Because doing a "bad" thing doesn't make you a bad person. I don't care about the flesh we have buried beneath the ground, the lives lost due to our mistakes. I will cry for them, mourn them, miss them, love them, but they're not who I fight for, because I don't believe in revenge. I fight for the hearts and minds left standing, I fight for those who still continue to suffer and live. Broken hearts don't beat, and I'm tired of the pain. This is because I can look beyond the past, and work for something more than dwell on it. Einstein once said something like "Learn from the past, live for the present, and work for the future." I could not agree with this way of life more.

 

One who does what we see accept as wrong deserves the change to learn from their mistakes. They should feel guilt for their actions, but not shame for who they are as an individual beyond what they have done. They deserve to use that knowledge the grow beyond the wrongs of yesterday, and make the future a brighter and more true world. And they deserve to live, because life is a gift, and no matter who you are, what you've done, you still have feelings, and you deserve to have the opportunity to live. Is the personal anguish one inflicts on themselves not enough as punishment?

 

True, not every "villain" or cruel folk is gifted with sanity, and those are plagued as if with a disease, only in their minds. People who still have a chance, still have the ability to find their way back, deserve that chance. We need to work together as individuals for the truth, not tear each other apart despite our differences and mistakes.

 

The Barraki did wrong, they did a terrible thing that could've had incredibly serious consequences, but if they can helped, they should be. If you want to believe in sickeningly twisted, black and white ideals that hold no true values, I can't force you to believe otherwise, but what you said hurt me because it is so wrong, so careless, and is what has caused so many to be lost, and so much right to never be found. It's so unqualified, so rash. It's so easy to say something... but it costs so much more to know what it really means.

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I sort of agree with him; Teridax's story is made that much better by the fact his success only helped to actually further the original goal, reforming Spherus Magna. He would have been a far less interesting character if he has accepted Mata Nui's offer(s?) of comradarie, instead of staying true to himself.

 

I think people are confusing the statement of "unredeemable" with "not having any good or nuanced character traits". Plenty of good characters (good in the "cool, awesome, well-written" sense) have complexities to them that don't automatically mean they will at some point be able or want to be heroes.

 

Part of it's also probably the chronology of it; I'm sure you can make the argument that at SOME point a character was able to be redeemed, but I get the sense the quote is talking about someone we know and understand to be a villain at this point in time. Voldemort's background didn't make him any less of a sociopath, for instance, even if he did draw the short straw in both genetics and environment.

 

The problem is not that he thinks there are irredeemable villains; the problem is he thinks those are the only villains. His statement was literally "a good villain shouldn't be able to be redeemed", which is such a black-and-white, one-dimensional, and, quite frankly, lazy way to think about characterization. That's saying that Darth Vader's change of heart at the end of Return of the Jedi was unrealistic because he was a villain, and thus, irredeemable.

 

He's not just saying "Teridax is irredeemable". He's saying "Krika, who was sympathetic to the Toa's cause and disliked the Plan, was irredeemable". He's saying "Ahkmou, who was lied to and manipulated, was irredeemable". He's saying "Anyone is only ever a good person or a bad person, with no room for changes of heart that don't follow that supposed innate alignment". He's saying that the only kind of villain there should be is the kind that can't ever find it in themselves to become a better person.

 

And that is what I take issue with.

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Enough about me. The point I'm interested in discussing is one raised by the person who asked Greg this ill-fated question: what would it take to redeem some of BIONICLE's villains? The OP cited the Barraki and Makuta Miserix as potential candidates for redemption, but I'm interested in hearing about any and all villains' possibilities. What would it take to redeem Ahkmou? Vezok? And if anyone's really ambitious: what would it take to redeem Makuta Teridax?

 

Funny you should mention Ahkmou...

 

Anyhow my headcanon for him (which I need to write.  Do pester me into doing so) involves his redemption.  Because to me, he seems like he always wanted to be a Toa hero but always missed out on becoming one, so he turned to working for Makuta instead.

 

Anyhow no. 2:  I think of him being redeemed by someone close to him sacrificing themselves to save his life.  That seems like the heart of redemption, isn't it?  It isn't the fact that suddenly a character turns around and starts doing good deeds; quite so, only the people that knew him would know how he had his change of heart.  It's the fact that someone believes he's worth saving.

 

You are correct, Mr. Farshtey, in saying that a good villain is a villain for a reason.  But the greatest villains are the ones that could turn around, that could be saved, but turn their backs on the opportunity.  That's what makes a villain powerful, potent:  Because we know that they're so close to being normal, to being like us.

 

-Jaga

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I think we have to look at it from the perspective of such villains as Freeza and Vegeta. Sorry about the DBZ reference but I don't know much about the Bionicle Villains and most everyone has heard of these two... Anyway If you watched the show read the manga or just have had a friend who was into it then you know that Freeza was one of the baddest and most evil of the Early Dragon Ball Z villains and what Greg would refer to as a "good" Villain as even upon death Freeza promises to change his ways if Goku spared his life and even begged the Super Saiyan to help him. Upon doing so Goku is immediately attacked by a crippled and much less then fighting condition Freeza forcing Goku to kill the villain. Once Freeza is recovered by his Father and rebuilt he immediately sets his eyes on Earth to enact his revenge.
 
Tell me you would show sympathy for Freeza who's only goal in life is to become the most powerful ruler of the universe. Killing anyone including an entire race of loyal followers for fear they would one day overpower and kill him. To think he had redeeming qualities? Goku thought so and believed him only to quickly realize there was no chance. Freeza is what Greg feels a real villain is. Similarly the original King Piccalo created when Kami purged himself of all dark intent was another example. As the Namekian was the embodiment of all the evil and dark thoughts and intents of the soon to be Guardian of Earth.
 
Now on to Vegeta. He was raised by Freeza and really didn't know what good was. He was raised to do a job and he did it. Because of this he was depicted as a villain. Well yes, but he was not actually a villain. Only appeared so based on circumstance. Goku could see some good in him and had spared the evil Saiyin to the result that Vegeta became a good guy. He was redeemed due to I am guessing seeing the way Goku was and the fiery temperament of his would be wife Bulma. Regardless of how Vegeta would not fit Greg's depiction of Villain in this regard because he did not stay a villain. This is also true of Majounior AKA DBZ's Piccolo. Who was born of evil but was not actually evil himself. Redeemed by that of a small boy, son of his so called hated enemy.
 
Vegeta and Piccolo would not be villains as Greg would put them as they were not evil so much as just did evil things because that is all they knew. It is a weird concept but one that hold true on may accounts. There is a difference between being a villain and a bad guy. Even the most evil villain would gravel for their lives and claim to want to change their ways if it meant their current survival. However when given the chance go right back to their old evil ways. However a bad guy could actually turn over a new leaf as it were.
 
In short Villains are not redeemable regardless of what qualities they may possess that one would find virtuous or good. If they were then they would not be villains but bad guys or misguided characters. This is what I believe Greg was saying in that regard. Good as in quality not so much morality stand point. a better version of the quote would be

 

"I don't really believe in redeeming characters, Orion. I believe a good quality/exceptional villain is a villain for a reason, and they are not just going to suddenly turn good. They may do good things, but it will be out of their own self-interest, not because they have suddenly become virtuous." - Greg.

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"A stranger will always be a stranger unless you give them a chance."

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anyone one here watch/read game of thrones? jaime lannister is the perfect example of how someone who is a villain can turn into a hero. it can be done but it has to be done right.

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As long as there is one bionicle fan out there there is still hope for bionicle to return. Keep faith. Bionicle is amazing.

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I'm gonna have to agree with Prowl's take on the quote (even if I have no idea who those characters are :P Sorry to burst your bubble, dude). Those who are marked as evil can be redeemable, but only if they make the choice to do so. A strong villain will stick to themselves and reject the opportunity to change (As Jack Sparrow said, "I love those moments--I like to wave at them as they pass by").

 

I do think that characters like Krika, Miserix, and Ahkmou can/could have been redeemed. Miserix, I think, is already on that path, even if he did expel all his inner light. Like in Once Upon a Time, the character Rumpelstiltskin/Mr. Gold became possessed of the darkest evil made manifest in times long past. Though totally evil, he was able to hold onto his humanity by the last strains of love for his son and his later-wife. When both of those became lost to him, he struggled to remain in the good graces of the other characters, and eventually strayed back to his dark ways, as was in his nature. Similarly, Miserix may have expended his inner light, but he is more or less sided with the good guys. There may yet be a cure for him, if he desires one.

 

Ahkmou is a simpler situation. I feel like he only turned to Teridax when he felt he could gain something from it. With Teridax gone, he has more of an opening to come back to the light.

 

Now, Teridax is interesting. Every time he achieved one goal, he set his sights higher. First he sought control of the Brotherhood, then control of Metru Nui, then of the GSR, and then the universe beyond. He was never truly satisfied. You'd somehow have to beat him to his goal to show him that he is fallible. So many victories made him arrogant--proving to him that he isn't so almighty would give him reason to doubt his actions. 

 

Just really quick, I wanna bring up Nidhiki. While a Toa with the DH, he still harbored hope that he could return. In that, he admitted that he had a problem and was willing to fix it. He lost that hope when his familiar Toa nature was taken from him. He was forced into darkness, so I think even as an insect, he couldn't completely give up on himself, even if everyone else would have.

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Villains CAN turn into good people. But it isn't like the flick of a switch. It takes a long time for them to turn good. And even if they do turn good, they can still relapse.

 

Evil intentions are like a drug addiction. The ability to do violence or harm actually gives you a euphoric reaction. Similar to getting high. That's why there's so many bad people in our world.

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Eh, I think most, if not all, could have found redemption in some way or another. Similar to what Johnrahk Sergei Rahkmaninoff (That's going to be something I'll have to just copy and paste now. Y U do this to me?), I think it all depends on inner light and inner shadow. Anyone with full inner light cannot be convinced to do evil whatsoever. People with inner shadow have no possible way of redemption.

 

Now, if inner light and inner shadow had no say in the matter, I believe anyone, even Teridax, could have found a way to redemption.

"In this new- Wait, why am I being quoted?!"

-Kovika, Toa of Ice, Bread Enthusiast, and Ko-Metru Scholar.

 

 

 

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I'm gonna have to agree with Prowl's take on the quote (even if I have no idea who those characters are :P Sorry to burst your bubble, dude). Those who are marked as evil can be redeemable, but only if they make the choice to do so. A strong villain will stick to themselves and reject the opportunity to change (As Jack Sparrow said, "I love those moments--I like to wave at them as they pass by").

That's ok T1S. You haven't burst my bubble. I knew there are some people out there who may not know them. DBZ is just got a high following that I figured it was my best bet. It also had good examples of the different quality of villains to make my point. If you agree then I guess it worked even if you can't put faces to the names. :D. Kind of on the flip side I know very little about the names here in the rest of your post. The only one I even recognize is Teridax as being the original Makuta from the Legend.

 

I do think that characters like Krika, Miserix, and Ahkmou can/could have been redeemed. Miserix, I think, is already on that path, even if he did expel all his inner light. Like in Once Upon a Time, the character Rumpelstiltskin/Mr. Gold became possessed of the darkest evil made manifest in times long past. Though totally evil, he was able to hold onto his humanity by the last strains of love for his son and his later-wife. When both of those became lost to him, he struggled to remain in the good graces of the other characters, and eventually strayed back to his dark ways, as was in his nature. Similarly, Miserix may have expended his inner light, but he is more or less sided with the good guys. There may yet be a cure for him, if he desires one.

 

Ahkmou is a simpler situation. I feel like he only turned to Teridax when he felt he could gain something from it. With Teridax gone, he has more of an opening to come back to the light.

 

Now, Teridax is interesting. Every time he achieved one goal, he set his sights higher. First he sought control of the Brotherhood, then control of Metru Nui, then of the GSR, and then the universe beyond. He was never truly satisfied. You'd somehow have to beat him to his goal to show him that he is fallible. So many victories made him arrogant--proving to him that he isn't so almighty would give him reason to doubt his actions.

Are you referring this to him being a high quality villain or just a misunderstood bad guy? I mean Teridax wasn't originally designed evil was he? Originally he has a noble cause and unless I am misremembering(I could be because I am getting this information from a fan video on YouTube I seen once.) That Teridax was a guardian and had his own Toa team with a certain task in protecting the GSR or the MU in general. Also wasn't he in charge of creating the Rahi? I mean most of the BS01 pages say created by a "Makuta" with viruses. Over time his goal shifted and from a certain perspective could be seen as Evil. This may even be true of the other Makuta. I don't actually know because Teridax is the only one I know/recognize.

 

Just really quick, I wanna bring up Nidhiki. While a Toa with the DH, he still harbored hope that he could return. In that, he admitted that he had a problem and was willing to fix it. He lost that hope when his familiar Toa nature was taken from him. He was forced into darkness, so I think even as an insect, he couldn't completely give up on himself, even if everyone else would have.

 

 

Villains CAN turn into good people. But it isn't like the flick of a switch. It takes a long time for them to turn good. And even if they do turn good, they can still relapse.

 

Evil intentions are like a drug addiction. The ability to do violence or harm actually gives you a euphoric reaction. Similar to getting high. That's why there's so many bad people in our world.

See this is where Greg and you may differ. A real Villain cannot change any more than a Leopard can become a Tiger or a Cheetah. I have to agree to an extent. I mean all throughout my childhood I have watch series after series where the protagonist faces off against a villain and somehow through the fight they change and become good guys. While also others never truly change and must be completely killed or defeated/destroyed. I could reference Power Rangers here as well. Some of the Villains such as Rita Rapolsa and Lord Zed were villains until the end. By that I mean when one of the Ranger teams (Space or Lost galaxy I believe) supposedly destroyed all Evil in the universe. These two along with others converted almost magically to good counter parts. The evil was pulled from them. In Bionicle terms the "darkness/shadow" was eliminated leaving only their internal light. However on more than one occasion these Villains showed good qualities. Even routing for the Rangers at times.

 

However "bad guys" on the other hand are perceived villains who have the option to become good. A good example from Power Rangers is Tommy the original Green Ranger. A good guy turned evil only to be redeemed and becoming good again. To the point that he became the White Ranger leader of the Power Rangers at the time. Going on to become the Red Turbo Ranger, the Gold Ranger, and even the Black Dino Thunder Ranger.

 

To end out your quote I have to agree that if you are predisposed to doing evil then the draw of such acts can pull you in like a drug. An real life example could be as some believe alcoholism. Some believe that if one of your parents are alcoholics then you are predisposed to becoming one yourself and it becomes easier to take that first drink followed by another and so on. Does this mean you will become an alcoholic? No, but in can be easier then someone who has not even seen a drink. This is also true of doing good deeds. Me personally I have an addiction to basically helping people. I don't feel like I am worth anything if I am not needed or desired by somebody else. If I am not being helpful or being asked for help I have no reason for even existing. If I am told that I am not needed or that they don't need/want my help in can be like somebody taunting a druggy with their poison of choice. 

"A stranger will always be a stranger unless you give them a chance."

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Now, Teridax is interesting. Every time he achieved one goal, he set his sights higher. First he sought control of the Brotherhood, then control of Metru Nui, then of the GSR, and then the universe beyond. He was never truly satisfied. You'd somehow have to beat him to his goal to show him that he is fallible. So many victories made him arrogant--proving to him that he isn't so almighty would give him reason to doubt his actions.

Are you referring this to him being a high quality villain or just a misunderstood bad guy? I mean Teridax wasn't originally designed evil was he? Originally he has a noble cause and unless I am misremembering(I could be because I am getting this information from a fan video on YouTube I seen once.) That Teridax was a guardian and had his own Toa team with a certain task in protecting the GSR or the MU in general. Also wasn't he in charge of creating the Rahi? I mean most of the BS01 pages say created by a "Makuta" with viruses. Over time his goal shifted and from a certain perspective could be seen as Evil. This may even be true of the other Makuta. I don't actually know because Teridax is the only one I know/recognize.

 

Yes. The Makuta were all created as good/neutral as everyone else in the MU. I was referring to him as he was after expelling his inner light. But jealousy was seemingly always a factor in his character, so he had that drive inside him all along.

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I feel like the distinction between a "bad guy" and a "villain" is semantics. Is it truly the definition of a villain that they have no capacity for change? This is probably not the best example, but in a couple Transformers continuities, Megatron gives up his life of violence and chaos, and in at least one even becomes an Autobot. Does this mean he was never a villain? He certainly played the part up until that point.

 

(I also don't think Greg was trying to make a distinction as to whether or not someone counts as a villain; his wording far more seems to imply that this is just what he thinks makes a well-written villain. In other words, a villain capable of redemption is a poor villain, according to him.)

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Now, Teridax is interesting. Every time he achieved one goal, he set his sights higher. First he sought control of the Brotherhood, then control of Metru Nui, then of the GSR, and then the universe beyond. He was never truly satisfied. You'd somehow have to beat him to his goal to show him that he is fallible. So many victories made him arrogant--proving to him that he isn't so almighty would give him reason to doubt his actions.

Are you referring this to him being a high quality villain or just a misunderstood bad guy? I mean Teridax wasn't originally designed evil was he? Originally he has a noble cause and unless I am misremembering(I could be because I am getting this information from a fan video on YouTube I seen once.) That Teridax was a guardian and had his own Toa team with a certain task in protecting the GSR or the MU in general. Also wasn't he in charge of creating the Rahi? I mean most of the BS01 pages say created by a "Makuta" with viruses. Over time his goal shifted and from a certain perspective could be seen as Evil. This may even be true of the other Makuta. I don't actually know because Teridax is the only one I know/recognize.

 

Yes. The Makuta were all created as good/neutral as everyone else in the MU. I was referring to him as he was after expelling his inner light. But jealousy was seemingly always a factor in his character, so he had that drive inside him all along.

 

Ah ok. That is true it just seems that what you posted does not inherently make him evil though. It is not evil to want to improve on ones self not is it evil to want to advance to the next level of power. What could be seen as Evil is how he went about it. Means to an end if you will. Jealously is a poor trait one could see as evil as it isn't known to be a virtuous trait to have. Similar I think to how the Gen2 Makuta is being portrayed. Being Jealous of is brother spurred on his creation of the MoUP a seemingly evil creation since it was immoral in its creation. By that it means that it was immoral to combine more than one element. So he is the villain of Gen2.  Now had Teridax taken a more diplomatic approach to achieving each of these goals would he still be seen as evil and a villain? Dina Saruyama;s quote below brings up another good example of this though.

 

I feel like the distinction between a "bad guy" and a "villain" is semantics. Is it truly the definition of a villain that they have no capacity for change? This is probably not the best example, but in a couple Transformers continuities, Megatron gives up his life of violence and chaos, and in at least one even becomes an Autobot. Does this mean he was never a villain? He certainly played the part up until that point.

 

See Transformers I know. I know them well. Megatron is a good example of what one may call a poor Villain. For example Megatron was not always the villain of the series. He was a good guy in his past and even friends with Optimus prior to the war. Megatron's ultimate goal was the same thing Optimus preaches to this day. "Freedom is the right of all sentient beings." Megatron wanted freedom from the tyranny of the current structure of their leaders and took a diplomatic approach at first. However due to a series of events including Optimus receiving of the Matrix and becoming a Prime instead of him Megatron's means of achieving his goal shifted from one of diplomacy to that of war and conquest. Feeling freedom to be achieved through War. His ultimate goal was lost due to his thirst for power and battle.

 

In one of the series Shattered Glass, the roles of the Autobots and Decepticons are reversed. Where Megatron and his Decepticons are the good guys and the Bots along with Optimus are the oppressors. In this series Optimus is a much greater villain than Megatron ever was. Also at the end of the Transformers Prime series Megatron looses his taste for tyranny after becoming oppressed by Unicron (The epitome of Evil in the TF universe) who took control over his body and made him helpless. So while Megatron did not become a good guy he was not longer the villain. Megatron in several of the series would help Optimus and the Autobot to further his own goals and keep himself alive. This doesn't make himself any less of a villain though as we already know even the most evil of villains will put self preservation on the top of their list and will even do good deeds as Greg has stated to further that goal.

 

(I also don't think Greg was trying to make a distinction as to whether or not someone counts as a villain; his wording far more seems to imply that this is just what he thinks makes a well-written villain. In other words, a villain capable of redemption is a poor villain, according to him.)

 

Exactly. It is the Opposite of the incorruptible hero and something Greg seems to strive for. Yes they will be tested and some may even think they may fall but in the end they always remain the hero. Toa Vakama I believe is a good example of this. He was tested and almost joined the evil side but in the end returned to his Toa team and saved the Matoran bringing them to Mata Nui. Though Bionicle is a weird case as they have viruses and special masks that can control the wearer and make them evil until the mask is removed or virus purged.

"A stranger will always be a stranger unless you give them a chance."

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As I said in the topic, I thought Krika was a good candidate for redemption. Without Greg's later answers, his characterization as a Makuta who wants Plan to fall and who is sympathetic to Toa would have been a good start towards working towards redemption.

I thought there was a specific point in the story in which Krika offered mercy to Gali instead of defeating her. That's already a pretty decent step toward redemption on its own. Strange to think the guy who wrote that doesn't believe in any redemption at all for villains.

 

And yeah, I think it's way too simplistic to have only irredeemable villains. Sure, you can have fantastic villains who are monsters that will never be redeemed (Ghetsis and Palpatine come to mind), but limiting villains to only that group is removing all but a small subset.

 

Greg's argument also seems to preclude certain villain tropes entirely, like the tragic villain or the well-intentioned extremist. Of course, those often have some form of redemption involved...

 

~B~

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The best sort of villains, the most believable sort of villains, are those who the reader can understand and sympathize with. You have fat more of an emotional journey if you can understand why the Well-Intentioned Extremist does what he does and has followers. A villain of this nature does not need to be redeemable, but the reader should have at least some idea of who they would have been were they not. Like what Greg did with Teridax and Alteridax, but without the copout 'alternate universe' device.

 

Take Darth Vader. He was horrible, but with the prequel movies and hints throughout the original trilogy, we got hints of a character deeper than just 'evil wizard'. We saw that the deep love for his wife and son (can't remember if he remembered his daughter), was his greatest flaw and also how he found redemption. To put that in bionicle terms, it is Krika falling into darkness because he believes in My Country Right or Wrong, following Teridax and his Plan, but if he had learned Miserix was alive, transferring his loyalties back to his original leader. Just like Vader; same trait leading both to downfall and redemption.

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Elemental Rahi in Gen2, anyone? A write-up for an initial video for a G2 plot

 

I really wish everyone would stop trying to play join the dots with Gen 1 and Gen 2 though,it seems there's a couple new threads everyday and often they're duplicates of already existing conversations! Or simply parallel them with a slightly new 'twist'! Gen 2 is NEW, it is NOT Gen 1 and it is NOT a continuation. Outside of the characters we already have I personally don't want to see ANY old characters return. I think it will cheapen the whole experience to those of us familiar with the original line...

 

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When I first read this, I interpreted it as "A villain can never be redeemed", and I was going to bring up Saul of Tarsus, later rechristened as Paul the Apostle. But reading it over again a few times, I kind of agree with Mr. Farshety: If a villain can be redeemed with a sudden awakening, was the individual ever truly a villain, or a lost hero waiting to be reeled back into the light? I think this also applies IRL: Lost people are given numerous chances to redeem themselves throughout their lives, but at some point a person will fool themselves for a final time, drowning out any further calls of reconciliation as they believe themselves to be in the right or just don't give a darn anymore. When one crosses this line is unknown, however, as it probably rarely happens and depends on the individual.

 

 

 

Now had Teridax taken a more diplomatic approach to achieving each of these goals would he still be seen as evil and a villain?
 

 

I'm... pretty sure there's no way to say "i want to rule what is literally our whole universe with an iron fist" and not become the villain. :0

 

Depends if they are in the right or not (going into what is good, and what is evil). If a universe was corrupt and there was a little rebellion trying to purge the universe of said evil by wiping it off forcibly, is he good or evil? The majority of the universe could view the rebellion as good or evil, but it goes to the root, what are those things?

 

I know I've used this guy as an example here before, but think of Ra's al-Ghul from DC Comics: his motivations for mass extinction (or at least holocaust) and global rebirth are to be sympathized with as he wishes to destroy the evil that is mankind and our side-effects (pollution and animal extinction), but in the end are the thoughts of a totalitarian psychopath with a god complex.

 

Same thing with Makuta Teridax in a sense. You could put it in a light that he wanted to free the MU of its servitude towards a neglectful deity, and put himself on the throne to be an attentive ruler that would do what is best for his subjects. Sounds good right? Not until you look down at all the details of how his rule runs and how it was achieved in the first place (this is actually somewhat reminiscent to the First French Revolution). I've seen people compare Makuta Teridax to the Shakespearean character MacBeth, but as I've never read or seen that play I can't give an opinion on it.

 

 

 

 

(After reading this post over, I feel like I lost where I was going, but maybe later I can remember, if there was anything to remember, I edit this post. Stupid brain. :headbonk:  )

Edited by Iaredios Paerkenon

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But the thing is, the existence of the incorruptible hero does not mean other kinds of heroes aren't heroes, and especially not that they're poorly-written heroes. There are many kinds of heroes, incorruptible and troubled. Why should there only be one kind of villain?

This is true to and I don't think Greg was specifically alienating the other Hero/Villain Tropes. He was just stating more of his personal beliefs regarding villains. Greg believes a good villain cannot be redeemed. Does that mean all other kinds of villains are bad at being villains? Well no to each their own. You may like the redeemable bad guy type of villain. You may like the villain who is really only a misguided hero. Doesn't make you wrong either. 

 

The best sort of villains, the most believable sort of villains, are those who the reader can understand and sympathize with. You have fat more of an emotional journey if you can understand why the Well-Intentioned Extremist does what he does and has followers. A villain of this nature does not need to be redeemable, but the reader should have at least some idea of who they would have been were they not. Like what Greg did with Teridax and Alteridax, but without the copout 'alternate universe' device.

 

Take Darth Vader. He was horrible, but with the prequel movies and hints throughout the original trilogy, we got hints of a character deeper than just 'evil wizard'. We saw that the deep love for his wife and son (can't remember if he remembered his daughter), was his greatest flaw and also how he found redemption. To put that in bionicle terms, it is Krika falling into darkness because he believes in My Country Right or Wrong, following Teridax and his Plan, but if he had learned Miserix was alive, transferring his loyalties back to his original leader. Just like Vader; same trait leading both to downfall and redemption.

Yeah Anakin knew Padme was pregnant but not with twins. He didn't learn about Leah until after Luke did. Even though she was well within his and the Emperor's reach. Odd and seemingly a plot hole of sorts. Even when they were right next to each other on the Death Star Vader did not sense the family connection between him and Leah.

 

@Iaredios

Don't worry I get where you were going with this. Also I have to agree that it depends on what side of the conflict you are on as to what you believe is right or wrong. Without going to extremes the Civil War to free the Slaves could be a good example of this. While today we know slavery is morally wrong back then owners of such slaves either did not think so or simply did not care. Now in general these people where not inherently evil. Doing charity or helping the community. But those who wanted to free the slaves could see them as such from their point of view. It is Evil to own another person and force them to work long hours for little or no pay? Wait a minute isn't that what Is still happening today? The slavers are not white man over black this time but economy and the government over the honest worker.

 

Anyway war and conflict broke out because of this difference of opinion. Now I want to keep my slave so I kill you for trying to free him. Am I evil for protecting what I believe is mine? I bet the family of that soldier I just killed who was just doing his job and following his beliefs would believe so. However my neighbor who also owns a slave thinks I am a hero for eliminating the invading party.

 

This is when the line of Evil and Villain gets blurred. Thus not really true villains. This can be found in many types of media.

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There are a lot of people in BIONICLE who did a lot of horrible things.

 

They don't deserve redemption.

 

The Barraki tried to overthrow Mata Nui. That's unforgivable.

Miserix is only "good" because he didn't want to lose his leadership status to Teridax. He did anyway.

 

Sorry to say this but I feel that you're very, very wrong.

........

 

TL;DR :D

 

 

 

 

Okay, I read what you said:

 

Right and wrong, good and evil. None of it is particularly real.

 

Heyyy.... did you rip that off of the Daredevil series? :P

 

I recently watched the Daredevil TV series

 

 

 

Yeah. :P

 

What angers me about your perspective as you have put it out to be is that it's irrational. There is no growth, no true justice, only revenge.

 

 

I'm not saying one strike and you're out. I'm saying that if you do something - or attempt to do something - very, very, very bad (the Piraka, Barraki, and the Makuta, for example) you don't deserve to be welcomed back into society even if you do a few good things after that.

 

But Brutaka, or Strakk, or maybe even Ahkmou - they're a mixed bag. They have choices about where they can take their life, and if they tread carefully enough they can become a part of society again.

 

 

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Obviously Teridax could not have been redeemed. Sure, he tried to do good, but it was bad in the way that he enacted it. Take for example a small Matoran civil war. To end the rebellion, he trapped the rebel Matoran in the Onu-Metru Archives and let the Rahi loose. I think sending tons of Matoran to the Red Star is just too bad to forgive.

Nidhiki could have been redeemed, but never really found redemption within himself after being mutated by Roodaka.

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Obviously Teridax could not have been redeemed. Sure, he tried to do good, but it was bad in the way that he enacted it. Take for example a small Matoran civil war. To end the rebellion, he trapped the rebel Matoran in the Onu-Metru Archives and let the Rahi loose. I think sending tons of Matoran to the Red Star is just too bad to forgive.

Nidhiki could have been redeemed, but never really found redemption within himself after being mutated by Roodaka.

Wait did Teridax actually do that? He fed rebellious Matoran to the Rahi? That's like throwing your enemies to the Lions in ancient Rome. So not nice...

"A stranger will always be a stranger unless you give them a chance."

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Obviously Teridax could not have been redeemed. Sure, he tried to do good, but it was bad in the way that he enacted it. Take for example a small Matoran civil war. To end the rebellion, he trapped the rebel Matoran in the Onu-Metru Archives and let the Rahi loose. I think sending tons of Matoran to the Red Star is just too bad to forgive.Nidhiki could have been redeemed, but never really found redemption within himself after being mutated by Roodaka.

Wait did Teridax actually do that? He fed rebellious Matoran to the Rahi? That's like throwing your enemies to the Lions in ancient Rome. So not nice...

It's true, on bio sector01, search for the matoran civil war, it will say Teridax wanted to exert control and locked all the participants into the archives and released the hounds, lions, bears and elephants. (Not really, the lions, bears and elephants part was untrue.)

 

Anyway, back on topic. Teridax is irredeemable after all the atrocities he committed, such as the civil war incident, the great cataclysm or his reign, along with the barraki. As for other characters like Strakk and Ahkmou, they have a chance to prove themselves to society and be accepted a IF they decide they want to make a change in themselves. Krika let Gali flee, which indicated that he did want to change and set himself free from the brotherhood, but he died without achieving his dream. :( that kinda makes me sad.

 

Topics like these are great for discussion since we can share different views and ideas, but at the same time, these kind of topics are a double edged sword since this has a great risk of causing a lot of flaming and bashing just because we are seeing opinions different from our own and refusing to listen or accept them. Just saying, especially after the whole canonizing plant life and plasma mess.

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I have to agree with Greg. A true villain doesn't always believe he is the villain. Like the Barraki. THey believed it was their destiny to rule everything. Although that power corrupted them, they still fought for what they believed to be their right. Or Makuta, who who believed they should be revered more so than Mata Nui. It is their mind set, and most being like that don't change their mind very easily. Even the Piraka, I believe are irredeemable.

 

With that said, I think the only 'bad guy' that could be redeemed is Brutaka. And that is only because he was bored to begin with. He believed the Order had just abandoned him and his talents. Maybe Strakk and Malum as they probably had their anger get the best of them.

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~Xeo~

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Sticking to the inner light/inner shadow reality: is it right to completely expel one or the other? We have seen the Makuta sucking inner light from the av-matoran, making them their evil servants, out of their will. Then they were "cured", still out of their will. Gavla did not want to be cured, however, and longed to become evil once more. If everyone had their inner shadow expelled, what world would come out of that? Would it be a good world, one worth living in? Would you agree to have your inner shadow sucked out?

 

Like it has already been said, a true, quality villain is one who has the chance to change and repent, but turns it away. But in the end no one is really a villain: everyone thinks that what they are doing, they are doing it for good. Whether it is their good, a family's/kin's or a nation's. Considering Mata Nui grew detached from his inhabitants, and because of this the Makuta managed to send him dying and cast his conciousness out of his body, because he was not really caring about what was going on inside, Teridax perhaps believed he could become a better sovereign/protector/god than Mata Nui was.

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(we'll ignore the fact that it was a simplistic answer given to someone who is presumably a child in a way they might understand it and that BZP has recently developed this weird fetish for tearing Greg a new one any time he says something ever)

 

The problem is not that he thinks there are irredeemable villains; the problem is he thinks those are the only villains. His statement was literally "a good villain shouldn't be able to be redeemed", which is such a black-and-white, one-dimensional, and, quite frankly, lazy way to think about characterization. That's saying that Darth Vader's change of heart at the end of Return of the Jedi was unrealistic because he was a villain, and thus, irredeemable.

And maybe Greg's the type of person to argue that Darth Vader's sacrifice, based on a heretofore unseen parental motivation, made absolutely no sense and was bad writing. He wouldn't be the first. He's not saying they don't exist at all, he's saying that those kinds of "villains" are not ones he prefers to write. He likes his villains bad to the bone, and based on basically any given police procedural of the past two, three decades, he's not alone in that.

 

Or, alternatively...

 

He's not just saying "Teridax is irredeemable". He's saying "Krika, who was sympathetic to the Toa's cause and disliked the Plan, was irredeemable". He's saying "Ahkmou, who was lied to and manipulated, was irredeemable". He's saying "Anyone is only ever a good person or a bad person, with no room for changes of heart that don't follow that supposed innate alignment". He's saying that the only kind of villain there should be is the kind that can't ever find it in themselves to become a better person.

 

And that is what I take issue with.

... maybe Greg is the kind of person who would say that Krika was actually a hero. He typically wrote from the other side of the aisle, with good guys going bad because of some defect in their character; even if they did heroic things in the past, that trait was always there, and it's not about where they start, but where they end up.

 

(I'd also argue that Ahkmou is irredeemable, since he never did anything worth redemption even after learning the truth of his origins, and instead AGAIN sided with the main villain for no other reason than satisfying a power trip.)

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Villains and other antagonists in a series do need the ability to have a redemption, since if they cannot be redeemed at all then they are hardly three dimensional characters who have an actual goal in mind. It's weak writing to have a villain as a villain solely because you need a villain, thus giving them an unhealthily bad goal that no actual individual would strive for without some other, underlying motivation. In general, villains aren't doing what they're doing because they see it as evil, they're doing it, by and large, because they feel it's the best way to actually do something or make something better.

 

If you write a villain to just be evil and nothing more, then that's a really boring, one dimensional way to write a character who has about the same amount of character as a cardboard cutout.

Then again, I'm of the opinion most of the Bionicle villains are poorly written examples of how not to write villains. Especially Teridax.

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and that BZP has recently developed this weird fetish for tearing Greg a new one any time he says something ever)

Nah, it's hardly recent. Try since five years ago.

 

I've though about Teridax a bit, and really I think he's one of the few villains in BIONICLE truly beyond redemption. In Gen 1 he was pretty much the personification of evil, and I doubt anything anyone did would have changed that. His worldview was simply too twisted. Even if someone else had showed him who was boss, as other have suggested, I doubt that would have changed much of anything. He'd just bounce right back with a new scheme. And really, I'm not sure what Teridax could do to redeem himself. He's pretty much a monster by every standard. The guy willingly allowed the Order to exterminate his own species in order to eliminate his competition, personally sent his best fighter to Karda Nui to get them all killed despite their loyalty to him, unleashed Rahi on Matoran to get them to quiet down, and murdered people left and right without a shred of remorse. I'm glad he wasn't redeemed in the story, because I currently can't think of a way it could have happened without coming across as incredibly forced (and his story was better for it anyways).

 

Honestly, in this quote I think Greg is referring specifically to people like Teridax. Villains in the truest sense of the word. That people think that this one answer he gave to some random person could be applied to every single thing he's ever written just seems silly to me. 

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Alas, Teridax... you could have been such a great villain...

 

That's one of the reasons I REALLY love MNOG.  At that point, Makuta was still Mata Nui's brother, story wise.  I could easily see Teridax getting jealous of his brother and lashing out at him and his creations.  To me, the whole fight between Mata Nui and Makuta was a sibling rivalry between gods, spun horribly out of control.

 

(Come on, don't act like you haven't wanted to completely and utterly beat the turducken out of your siblings once)

 

Then we had the Phantoka where we learned there were actually tons of Makutas, and Teridax seemed to have been reduced to this petty schemer wanting to take over the world.

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