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Icelerate

Are Possessed/Mind Controlled "Villains" really Villains?

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  1. 1. Are possessed villains really villains?

  2. 2. Is Fallen Celica a villain?



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Whenever people talk about villains, characters who are under the influence of an evil force such as Lyon, Julius, Hardin are talked about. But if they're being mind controlled, possessed or brainwashed, than that is no longer them. A villain is someone who is contemptible but a possessed person is not deserving of scorn because they have no agency when they do their actions. That's like saying Celica was a villain when she fought Alm but no one calls Celica at that point in time a villain because she was possessed and had no free will. So why is Celica, in that moment, not considered a villain but characters like Julius are even though Celica is more responsible for getting possessed than Julius who just happened to touch some book and had no idea what he was getting into? 

Edited by Icelerate

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Probably because Celica was playable and the rest of those weren't. Well Lyon's in the creature campaign but yeah.

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Just now, Dragoncat said:

Probably because Celica was playable and the rest of those weren't. Well Lyon's in the creature campaign but yeah.

FE10 Spoilers:

Spoiler

So Black Knight and Sephiran aren't villains because they are playable? 

 

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3 minutes ago, Icelerate said:

FE10 Spoilers:

  Reveal hidden contents

So Black Knight and Sephiran aren't villains because they are playable? 

 

No, that's not what I'm getting at. Celica is a main protagonist. BK and Sephiran are playable, but not main protagonists who the story requires to be, not a villain. Plus they are only playable for short times.

Also, you should add "depends" to the first question in the poll so I can vote in it.

Edited by Dragoncat

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Just now, Dragoncat said:

No, that's not what I'm getting at. Celica is a main protagonist. BK and Sephiran are playable, but not main protagonists who the story requires to be, not a villain. Plus they are only playable for short times.

Death Note spoilers:

Spoiler

Does that mean Light Yagami is not a villain because he is the main protagonist? 

 

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Idk about Death Note because I'm not an anime person.

I was editing in another argument. Celica is only possessed for a very short time where as Lyon appears to be possessed for much longer, and probably Julius too but I haven't played that far into FE4. So because she doesn't actually do any damage while possessed she's not considered a villain. Lyon destroys sacred stones, Julius does...things, evil things. Things that have a bigger impact than Celica attacking Alm and getting snapped out of it.

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Depends if you're saying "villain" in the sense of their story role (antagonist, rival, opponent, etc), or "villain" as a bad person who is solely to blame for the damage they've done

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12 minutes ago, Icelerate said:

Julius

Julius was corrupted, not possessed, by Loptous. His personality did change as did his sense of morals, but I'd still consider him to have a sense of self, albeit corrupted by a magical force. Only at the ending when Ishtar dies, Julius loses his sense of self and Loptous takes over.

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Depends on the type of possession. Hardin for example doesn't seem possessed in the sense that Gharnef uses him as a meat puppet. From his statements and Hardin falling victim to his own bottled up feelings we can assume that he's corrupted and that part of that corrupted had been their all along. Celica on the other hand is just a meat puppet who really doesn't want anything to do with it. 

Lyon counts as a villain because part of him is totally fine with accepting the demon king's power to best Ephraim, even if he loses the struggle to keep his will at the end. 

Julius is a more questionable case. Its harder to see where Julius real personality ends and where Loptyr begins. He probably didn't have the bottled up resentment that Hardin had. 

Edited by Etrurian emperor

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I answered yes to both questions.

In my mind, a villain is someone who do something inmoral or cause harm to others to point of killing or in a goal for the extinction of a race.

Now has to posseded villains or bad guys, you have to see them as an entirely different person. Celica is not a villain since she did none of those two points, but Fallen Celica did (she tried to kill Alm). They are different persons, so even if it was a short while, Fallen Celica was a villain.

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Depends really. I see everyone else bringing Julius, but Lyon clearly does some of the things out of free will. I believe in one of the two paths it is revealed that Lyon was faking his possession, but it's been a while since I've played Sacred Stones while paying attention to the story.

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16 minutes ago, Edgelord said:

No, they're antagonists.

Fairly good delineation if I understand it right. Villain = willfully and consciously seeks to antagonize. Antagonist = one who antagonizes. All villains are antagonists, but not all antagonists are villains.

 

Possession cases vary. Lyon isn't a villain to me, even on Ephraim's route, since he isn't saving Grado at all by resurrecting the Demon King. He never explains how him becoming the Demon King, whom he says Ephraim should then kill, is doing anything to save Grado. He can't explain this rationally, because despite saying he is not being possessed, he is, the Demon King is just being more subtle in his manipulation- such as creating this clear leap in logic no sane person could understand.

Julius on the other hand is a composite person- Julius-Loptyr, and Loptyr is more directly speaking through Julius, becoming one with him. Formortiis always keeps a distance between him and Lyon within Lyon's body, whereas Loptyr assimilates Julius's psyche and hence Julius is a villain. He didn't want to be one originally, but now he is. We never see a Julius apart from Loptyr, we must either therefore declare him living as a villain, or dead.

 

FE7 has no villain. Nergal is a victim of mishandling of Elder Magic. He is no longer sane at all. Being no longer sane, I don't consider him a rational, conscious actor anymore. He is a wild beast, a savage force of nature, although unlike Grima, whom is similar, Nergal wasn't born insane like it was, sanity being part of his original character, Nergal is no longer alive at all, all of FE7 is an unconscious flailing of his body.

-And yet I consider Gharnef to be a conscious, rationally-acting villain. Why? Perhaps it is because Gharnef was inherently jealous before the Darksphere/Imhullu got him, and hence although corrupted, his original character endures and that is what matters. Nergal has none of his original self left.

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50 minutes ago, Etrurian emperor said:

Depends on the type of possession. Hardin for example doesn't seem possessed in the sense that Gharnef uses him as a meat puppet. From his statements and Hardin falling victim to his own bottled up feelings we can assume that he's corrupted and that part of that corrupted had been their all along. Celica on the other hand is just a meat puppet who really doesn't want anything to do with it. 

 

If the dark sphere wasn't used on Hardin, do you think eventually he'd become evil on his own but less so and taking longer to do so? Anyway, I prefer villains who are evil of their own volition. 

Also, how come Celica still has her own feelings/personality even if she can't control her actions unlike the other witches? But in Heroes she seems totally into Duma. 

 

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57 minutes ago, Interdimensional Observer said:

 Villain = willfully and consciously seeks to antagonize. Antagonist = one who antagonizes. All villains are antagonists, but not all antagonists are villains.

I'm pretty sure it's: 

Villain- Anyone evil.

Antagonist- anyone who is in the way of the protagonist's goals (If the villain is the protagonist, the heroic character is the antagonist).

Protagonist is simply the lead character, who can be a villain.

Basically, villain is a place on the moral scale while antagonist refers to story role (a force acting against the lead character or characters).

Edited by Arcphoenix

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1 hour ago, Icelerate said:

If the dark sphere wasn't used on Hardin, do you think eventually he'd become evil on his own but less so and taking longer to do so? Anyway, I prefer villains who are evil of their own volition. 

Also, how come Celica still has her own feelings/personality even if she can't control her actions unlike the other witches? But in Heroes she seems totally into Duma. 

 

Probably not. In his heart Hardin seems like a pretty benevolent guy who has his vices under control. The dark sphere just ensured the vices took over and the benevolence was under lockdown instead. 

As for Celica, do we know the writers of Heroes? Maybe its different writers or maybe they thought a Duma worshipping Celica to be more interesting. 

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I see characters like Lyon and as antagonists since they're really only obstructing the goal of the hero. They're not really villains like Gharnef and Manfroy are as they aren't vile people who do heinous crimes for little reason. Besides, villain is kind of subjective anyways. Some people would call Rudolf a villain, while others can find sympathy in his actions.

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3 hours ago, Interdimensional Observer said:

Fairly good delineation if I understand it right. Villain = willfully and consciously seeks to antagonize. Antagonist = one who antagonizes. All villains are antagonists, but not all antagonists are villains.

Not in the literary sense, which is what is often referred to in stories.

The antagonist is simply the force that opposes the protagonist.  A villain can very much be a protagonist because a story doesn't always have to be about a hero.  Many great literary works are about villains, or those who become villains.

 

That out of the way, I feel like in their "dark" forms, Hardin and Julius still retain themselves.  In Hardin's case, it's like the darksphere awoken his darker, more primal side; when he speaks to Marth, he speaks as a man who is suffering, not as a puppet; when he finally "comes to", it's more like he realized how far he had gone and that he wrought countless horrors upon the people he swore to protect.  And Julius was corrupted by the Loptuous Tome, not possessed; him acquiring it merely led to him becoming a villain, it's akin to many tales of villains finding forbidden knowledge and becoming corrupted by it.

So in that sense they're still kind of villains.  Celica and Garon aren't; their will isn't their own, it's the will of malevolent gods.  Celica's barely even an antagonist.

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Others have said as much, or similar ideas, in their own words, but I'd break it down into two categories: Corruption and True Possession

Corruption implies some part of their personality is still intact and that they are making conscious choices. Their moral compass might be totally realigned but they are still the same person....missing most of the good parts.  Lyon and Nergal would fall into this category and I'd consider them villains, even if they are tragic.

True Possession is a complete separation of the original individual from their body. Robin (Grima), Takumi (by the last battle in Conquest) and Celica are this category. The one possessing them is absolutely a villain, but the possessed character no longer has any moral agency to be called a villain themselves. 

14 hours ago, Interdimensional Observer said:

FE7 has no villain. Nergal is a victim of mishandling of Elder Magic. He is no longer sane at all. Being no longer sane, I don't consider him a rational, conscious actor anymore. He is a wild beast, a savage force of nature, although unlike Grima, whom is similar, Nergal wasn't born insane like it was, sanity being part of his original character, Nergal is no longer alive at all, all of FE7 is an unconscious flailing of his body.

Eh, I'd disagree here. Up until basically the moment of his death, Nergal is very lucid and aware of his actions. He's completely forgotten what he was searching for, but what remains is a twisted human spirit. He is not mindless.

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5 hours ago, NekoKnight said:

Eh, I'd disagree here. Up until basically the moment of his death, Nergal is very lucid and aware of his actions. He's completely forgotten what he was searching for, but what remains is a twisted human spirit. He is not mindless.

My interpretation probably stems from too much emphasis on his true final line. That, me liking to categorize him as one of two extremes of failure of Dark Magic- raging uncontrollably, the other extreme being vegetative coma. Bramimond finding the path between total loss of action and excessive action due to Dark Magic (I'm the no. 1 SF Brammy fan). Lastly, there are many logical pitfalls in actions, not just one big one, but a series of continual missteps.

I don't wholly hate Nergal, but seeing him as a husk beyond redemption who has lost his original purpose, something Gharnef didn't lose, makes me not so appreciative of him. He is a hollow villain, you can't even really blame him for himself, if anything an addiction victim. If he kept a shred of his purpose, if he went "my wife died and now I want the world to burn!", maybe I'd see him a little less as a husk- although the statement I just put in quotations is admittedly a terrible reason for a villain to be a villain. So I don't know exactly what could be done.

On the plus side, he is one who unlike Zephiel and many other FE villains, interacts constantly with the heroes, his irrational actions being the cause of much of this, but nonetheless plentiful hero-villain interaction is a good thing.

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