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AP 651 - Shitty Antags

Posted: Sun May 10, 2020 8:35 pm
by VicMonado
Last week's topic but with baddies:

Also suggested by Joseph again.

Re: AP 651 - Shitty Antags

Posted: Sun May 10, 2020 8:55 pm
by rampant_a_i
Not all antagonists are villains, but a villain is supposed to be bad. Someone we root against in favor of the protagonist. So it is expected that a villain be someone we do not like. But that does not make them "shitty" necessarily.
I think a "shitty" antagonist is one that fails to perform their role in a story, or whom we cannot really see as the "bad guy". I tend to have a problem when the reader/audience cannot tell the difference between the protagonist and the antagonist.

All I can think of is that Akihiko Kayaba from Sword Art Online was _supposed_ to have been a psychotic sociopath who put all of the Aincrad players in dire jeopardy. But by the end of the story, and well into the sequel story lines, the writer seems to entirely walk back his villainy. I can't say if that's good or bad. In some works that can be good, as every villain can benefit from not being a pure "evil-for-evil's sake" characature, but in SAO's case it only blunts the results. We spent all season justifying the players drive to survive despite this antagonist's blood-thirsty mandate, but this "oh, he was really not so bad a guy afterall" ending mutes the impact the way it was done.