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Old 12-15-2014, 09:25 AM   #1
Godzilla2000
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Default Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

Just to give you a bit of background, I have always loved villains in movies more than the heroes. As a 70's kid Darth Vader was my first villain and I loved him. Original 70's BSG loved the Cylon Centurions. Superman II loved the three Kryptonian Villains. Loved Khan in Wrath of Khan, Sauron in LOTR, etc. etc. You get the idea. I have quite a pedigree for liking villains.

Anyways after watching Thor: The Dark World and Guardians of the Galaxy, both movies I like by the way, it has come to my attention that if you are a villain who's not Loki Marvel doesn't like you. Now this may change when Age of Ultron comes out because Ultron looks like he will be very badass, but as things stand the only real standout villain in all the Marvel movies is Loki. (And he should take over the void left with Mephisto being owned by another studio as the mover and shaker of evil deeds in the MCU.) Mostly all the other villains, such as Malekith and Ronan, introduced have been pretty paper thin and uninteresting though they look rather cool. It's like Marvel is afraid of creating another sympathetic villain people will love more than the heroes. And admit it, Thor is always upstaged by Loki in the Thor movies. We can all blame Tom Hiddleston for this of course.

Now I was thinking of this as I was typing the above paragraph. Anyways I think what Disney Owned Marvel doesn't understand is the need for an interesting villain the audience gets to know, meaning they need to find writing collaborators who know how to write for villains in a way that makes them interesting. That and they need to give any not-Loki villains more screen time so the audience can get a feel for who this villain is and why we hate them. Let's face it, they need to be evil regardless of the reasons and we need to see them a lot more doing evil things so we can rally behind the heroes. And sometimes a villain being liked by fans isn't a bad thing, case in point: Loki. Sometimes even the villain becomes an anti-hero because of how much the fans like him/her, like Venom in the Spider-man comics. No matter how you slice it Marvel needs to spend more time developing their villains and making them interesting. They dropped the ball with Malekith and Ronan mostly because of their lower tier status and a lack of expectations due to the aura of unfamiliarity. They should have improved these characters and made them first tier much like the first Ironman movie did with Tony Stark who wasn't as popular as other Marvel characters until Robert Downey Jr. brought him to life.

And on the subject of Ironman I have oodles of ideas in my head as to how they could make the Mandarin a real kickass, scary villain if done right and with serious respect to creating a better less ethnocentrically caricatured version than as he appears in the comics. It would all come down to the casting of the character which demands a kickass Asian actor that should be pretty unknown to us here in the West. If you want to know my pick, watch Godzilla: Final Wars and pay attention to the younger Xillian commander in the movie. He'd be my perfect choice for an actor to play the Mandarin if he could perfect his English.

But anyways, let me hear what you have to say.

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Old 12-15-2014, 09:31 AM   #2
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Default Re: Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

I don't think they hate them. I just think they find the heroes and established fan favourites more important. James Gunn recently said that the one thing he dislikes about his film is that he couldn't expand more on Ronan and Thanos, for whom he had thought out more things, because the film can only be so long. And listening to early interviews with Christopher Eccleston, he says what he likes most about Malekith is that he's not another generic bad guy, but actually has a complex backstory and motive. Seeing how Malekith is the villain who has these things the least of all in the MCU, I assume these scenes were cut because the film would be too long otherwise.

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Old 12-15-2014, 09:43 AM   #3
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Default Re: Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

Based on that about Malekith, it sounds like Marvel just needs to learn to trim the fat, ie the excess jokes, and stick to the meat of their stories.

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Old 12-15-2014, 09:51 AM   #4
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Default Re: Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

In this age of really long movies that push the 3 hour mark and still engage audiences it is possible to give villains the equal focus that making a well rounded villain demands though.

Rest assured I do believe that Thanos will be getting more character development in the future, like two movies worth I believe?

What I'm talking about is the overall lack of attention given to the villains in the Marvel movies. You have to balance the screentime between the hero(es) and antagonist(s) or you just end up with a generic forgettable villain just there to bully the heroes with no explanation given or a less than acceptable representation of a powerful antagonist, like the Mandarin. There has to be a certain affinity for and a respect of villains in comicbook movies.

Just to give you an idea I am a huge fan of Eddie Brock/Venom. I loved the look of the character in the third Raimi film but hated how he was utilized. That is because Sam Raimi hates Venom and the character was shoehorned into the movie by the producers. I know Raimi could and should have done Venom better. The grain of how to interpret him was deftly realized with Ock's communication with his robotic arms in the second movie but Raimi let his feelings for the character shroud his creativity resulting in a watered down, limp version of the dark, violent anti-hero.

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Old 12-15-2014, 10:24 AM   #5
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Default Re: Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

This has been my biggest issue with most of Marvel's movies. While most of them have been great, outside of Loki, their villains have been so one-dimensional and uninteresting which sucks because a lot them are great in the comics. Most of the time, feel like they're just there because the movie needs a villain.

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Old 12-15-2014, 10:29 AM   #6
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Default Re: Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

I thought you were only ripping on MCU villains

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Old 12-15-2014, 10:37 AM   #7
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Default Re: Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SuperT View Post
This has been my biggest issue with most of Marvel's movies. While most of them have been great, outside of Loki, their villains have been so one-dimensional and uninteresting which sucks because a lot them are great in the comics. Most of the time, feel like they're just there because the movie needs a villain.
If you ask me they seem less like characters and more like one dimensional vaguely evil entities meant to push the plot along.

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I thought you were only ripping on MCU villains
I am for the most part but I was using Venom as an example of how best to illustrate my feelings of disappointment with villain treatment in the MCU. The mistreatment of Mandarin, Malekith, and Ronan are on the same level of disrespect that Raimi treated Venom IMHO.

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Old 12-15-2014, 10:42 AM   #8
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Default Re: Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

I don't see how the mandarin was "disrespectful". Tell me the truth, have you ever read a single comic with the mandarin in it?
He wasn't exactly a fan favorite before the film, yet all of a sudden this place became home to the biggest mandarin fans once the "twist" came to light.

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Old 12-15-2014, 10:43 AM   #9
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Default Re: Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

they just focus on the heroes

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Old 12-15-2014, 10:45 AM   #10
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Default Re: Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

Why do you need to use Venom? If you are upset about Marvel villains then use them as your example. Talking about Venom, or anything not MCU villain related, is distracting to your argument and does nothing to support your claim.

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Old 12-15-2014, 10:52 AM   #11
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Default Re: Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

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Originally Posted by Flint Marko View Post
I don't see how the mandarin was "disrespectful". Tell me the truth, have you ever read a single comic with the mandarin in it?
He wasn't exactly a fan favorite before the film, yet all of a sudden this place became home to the biggest mandarin fans once the "twist" came to light.
Trust me, I would find it an interesting challenge to make the Mandarin a real kickass, appealing character to the general audience and the fans as well as Marvel itself. It's what any creative type lives for, to make the impossible very possible. Sometimes what you need to bring a powerful interpretation of a character to life is someone vaguely familiar with the franchise to bring a breath of fresh air to it. For example that outlook, bringing in someone new to a franchise and unfamiliar with the source material worked very well for the Wrath of Khan, which was produced by a man who was not a fan, and is still considered the best movie of the bunch past and present.

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Why do you need to use Venom? If you are upset about Marvel villains then use them as your example. Talking about Venom, or anything not MCU villain related, is distracting to your argument and does nothing to support your claim.
Just calm down and roll with it my friend. It's old news now and you're beating a dead horse.

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Old 12-15-2014, 11:18 AM   #12
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Default Re: Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

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Trust me, I would find it an interesting challenge to make the Mandarin a real kickass, appealing character to the general audience and the fans as well as Marvel itself. It's what any creative type lives for, to make the impossible very possible. Sometimes what you need to bring a powerful interpretation of a character to life is someone vaguely familiar with the franchise to bring a breath of fresh air to it. For example that outlook, bringing in someone new to a franchise and unfamiliar with the source material worked very well for the Wrath of Khan, which was produced by a man who was not a fan, and is still considered the best movie of the bunch past and present.
My point is that you don't know the character enough to say they "disrespected" him. Truth be told he was a character who's origins were rooted in disrespect and cultural insensitivity so adapting him from page to the screen was always going to be a headache no matter how you handled it.
Also I'd make the argument that the twist worked for way more people than it didn't; you don't garner critical approval and a billion dollars if people didn't like the movie. The only people who complain about Trevor Slattery are fanboys, people like you and I who care enough about these movies to visit these forums and even then it's just a vocal minority.
My point is, the Mandarin twist worked in IM3 and shouldn't be counted as an undeveloped/mishandled villain.
Quote:
Just calm down and roll with it my friend. It's old news now and you're beating a dead horse.
He does have a point though. If we are going to talk about non-MCU films why not look at the Green Goblin? Or Doctor Octopus? Or Magneto? Or Mystique?
There is a huge divide between MCU movies and the other Marvel films. Addressing both with one criticism raises a lot of questions, especially when the title of the thread is about Disney owned Marvel.

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Old 12-15-2014, 11:25 AM   #13
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Default Re: Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

Personally I like my heroes. The Dark Knight was one of the few times where I preferred the villains. As awesome as that movie is Bale's Batman seems more like a supporting character to me.

I'm not giving Marvel a free pass here but my feeling is that especially since they've had to work with the more obscure heroes of the Marvel universe, it was more essential that they endear those characters with the audience first. As we head into Phase 3, I would expect that now that they've established these heroes we know and love we can see some more time spent on the villains.

I don't agree that Loki has upstaged Thor. I feel they're pretty on par acting wise but I do think Thor needs some better writing going forward to focus on his character development. But it is ironic to me that this statement is made in the same breath that says Loki is the most developed villain. It stands to reason that if you focus on one thing then another suffers. The Dark Knight is a case in point. You can't have your cake and eat it too.

And don't get me wrong - I love LOTR but how was Sauron a well developed villain? He was just this generic force of evil. That is why PJ made characters like Denethor (and arguably even Theoden at times) more villainous and introduced characters like Gothmog the Orc to provide more tangible antagonists for the heroes.


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Old 12-15-2014, 11:30 AM   #14
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Default Re: Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

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Personally I like my heroes. The Dark Knight was one of the few times where I preferred the villains. As awesome as that movie is Bale seems more like a supporting character to me.

I'm not giving Marvel a free pass here but my feeling is that especially since they've had to work with the more obscure heroes of the Marvel universe, it was more essential that they endear those characters with the audience first. As we head into Phase 3 I would expect that now that they've established these heroes we know and love we can see some more time spent on the villains.

I don't agree that Loki has upstaged Thor. I feel they're pretty on par acting wise but I do think Thor needs some better writing going forward to focus on his character development. But it is ironic to me that this statement is made in the same breath that says Loki is the most developed villain. It stands to reason that if you focus on one thing then another suffers. The Dark Knight is a case in point. You can't have your cake and eat it too.

And don't get me wrong - I love LOTR but how was Sauron a well developed villain? He was just this generic force of evil. That is why PJ made characters like Denethor (and arguably even Theoden at times) more villainous and introduced characters like Gothmog the Orc to provide more tangible antagonists for the heroes.

Spot on.
For what its worth: every couple weeks I have people over to watch a movie, since I have the nicest home theater system out of all my friends and an expansive movie collection. Lately they've been wanting to watch a lot of Marvel movies, and we just recently went through all of Phase 2.
Interesting enough, Thor 2 and Guardians were probably the most well-liked out of the four, and all 6 or 7 of my friends who were over thought Ronan and Malekith were badass much in the same way moviegoers across the world thought Sauron was badass.
Sometimes you don't really need to flesh out the villain too much for a film to work - make them cool, threatening, and powerful, and then conversely make the heroes likable, and sometimes that is enough.
I know I'm just a stranger on the internet who could be making all of that up, but that to me shows that the villains aren't as ineffective as some believe.

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Old 12-15-2014, 11:41 AM   #15
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Default Re: Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

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Spot on.
For what its worth: every couple weeks I have people over to watch a movie, since I have the nicest home theater system out of all my friends and an expansive movie collection. Lately they've been wanting to watch a lot of Marvel movies, and we just recently went through all of Phase 2.
Interesting enough, Thor 2 and Guardians were probably the most well-liked out of the four, and all 6 or 7 of my friends who were over thought Ronan and Malekith were badass much in the same way moviegoers across the world thought Sauron was badass.
Sometimes you don't really need to flesh out the villain too much for a film to work - make them cool, threatening, and powerful, and then conversely make the heroes likable, and sometimes that is enough.
I know I'm just a stranger on the internet who could be making all of that up, but that to me shows that the villains aren't as ineffective as some believe.
That is awesome. But I think I’m getting jealous about your home theater setup.



What you’ve said has been my experience as well. I think most people are able to just enjoy themselves. It’s folks like us on these forums however that like to nitpick everything to death.

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Old 12-15-2014, 11:51 AM   #16
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Default Re: Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

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That is awesome. But I think I’m getting jealous about your home theater setup.

Lol thanks man its not bad. 65 inch flat screen, brand new blu ray player, and about $1300 worth of Bose surround sound speakers (those actually belong to my room mate).
Makes our house the place to go to watch football games or movies.

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What you’ve said has been my experience as well. I think most people are able to just enjoy themselves. It’s folks like us on these forums however that like to nitpick everything to death.
Exactly. And it makes sense given that this is a movie discussion forum, so things like this will get nitpicked to hell and back, but in some ways I think a lot of people forget that movies are not only art but a form of escapism and if you can make audiences invest in your story and character for two hours, despite it's flaws, then it is still largely successful without having to be high art or anything.

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Old 12-15-2014, 11:54 AM   #17
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Default Re: Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

I don't really have a problem with the way Marvel has handled their villains aside from Malekith. Pierce was a good villain. Stane was a good villain. I just wish they stop killing them off all the time though. Ronan was a good character, but I would have liked to seen more of him in the future. Losing him hurts the cosmic side of the MCU. He could have been a valuable part of Inhumans, Captain Marvel, etc.

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Old 12-15-2014, 12:17 PM   #18
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Default Re: Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

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I don't really have a problem with the way Marvel has handled their villains aside from Malekith. Pierce was a good villain. Stane was a good villain. I just wish they stop killing them off all the time though. Ronan was a good character, but I would have liked to seen more of him in the future. Losing him hurts the cosmic side of the MCU. He could have been a valuable part of Inhumans, Captain Marvel, etc.
I agree killing them off is a movie norm but I think it would serve them well to give use some repeat offenders other than Loki.

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Old 12-15-2014, 12:50 PM   #19
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Default Re: Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

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This has been my biggest issue with most of Marvel's movies. While most of them have been great, outside of Loki, their villains have been so one-dimensional and uninteresting which sucks because a lot them are great in the comics. Most of the time, feel like they're just there because the movie needs a villain.
Throw the Mandarin in there, too. I would like to see more villains given a Loki esque adaption where you really have a hard time labeling them as villains, so much as you can only really call them characters.

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Old 12-15-2014, 01:16 PM   #20
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Default Re: Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

Two comments:

First, I think this perception that "Marvel hates villain" is a mistake. Marvel doesn't hate villains. Rather, movies in general "love" their villains disproportionately much, in recent years. Usually, its the villain of the movie that gets to be dynamic and drive the plot, with the hero reacting to stuff the villain does. The villain role gets to be "juicier", and attract actors who put some spirit into it. Marvel rejecting this trend and giving full focus on the hero of the movie creates an impression that they "hate" villains, simply because we've all grown too used to the villain being the center of the movie.

( And its not even really true, since every movie Loki has appeared in, has to a large extent revolved around his personality and his actions, anyway. )

Second, really, Marvel doesn't kill off villains excessively. Sure, it'd be nice if they kept more of them around, but compared to even other comic book movies, let alone action movies in general? Marvel keeps tons of villains alive.

Iron Man 1: None.
Incredible Hulk: General Ross, Abomination; Samuel Sterns gets setup.
Iron Man 2: Justin Hammer.
Thor: Loki; also, the Jotuns as a people are still around.
Captain America: *Technically* none, but Red Skull gets the most "no body no death" death ever.
Avengers: Loki, Thanos, the Other.
Iron Man 3: None, though the Mandarin's death is a little "no body no death"; also, not every Extremis soldier is accounted for.
Thor 2: Loki.
Cap 2: Winter Soldier, Rumlow, Strucker; also, HYDRA as an organization is confirmed extant.
GotG: Nebula, Thanos, the Collector.

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Old 12-15-2014, 01:21 PM   #21
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Default Re: Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

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And don't get me wrong - I love LOTR but how was Sauron a well developed villain? He was just this generic force of evil. That is why PJ made characters like Denethor (and arguably even Theoden at times) more villainous and introduced characters like Gothmog the Orc to provide more tangible antagonists for the heroes.
Oh, lol...some of you people take things more literally than Drax sometimes. My mentioning Sauron was an example of my predilection towards favoring the bad guys in movies, not a critique of the character. And I do tend to I forget not everybody reads Tolkien's books instead deriving their knowledge from the movies. In the Silmarillion and other works released posthumously Sauron himself is much more fleshed out a villain. He started out a faithful apprentice of Aulë and learned the craft of Blacksmithing from him. Morgoth actually seduced him to the Dark Side and made him his second in command until his fall. Before he lost his fleshly body he was a shapeshifter. He favored a fair form to easily fool men. But I'm just skimming the surface with Sauron in the books.

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Throw the Mandarin in there, too. I would like to see more villains given a Loki esque adaption where you really have a hard time labeling them as villains, so much as you can only really call them characters.
You know, we've been so inundated with so many sympathetic villains, I think I'd like to see a villain that's just born pure evil for once...oh, like Thanos. Sympathy should not apply to him because he's just ruthless. Badass evildoer with a creepy fetish for death quite literally should. I am so ready to just unequivocally hate the villain because of his/her lack of sympathy. Give me a good reason to cheer for the Good Guys.

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Old 12-15-2014, 01:31 PM   #22
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Sauron is one of the worst examples of villainy out there.

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Old 12-15-2014, 02:00 PM   #23
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Exactly. And it makes sense given that this is a movie discussion forum, so things like this will get nitpicked to hell and back, but in some ways I think a lot of people forget that movies are not only art but a form of escapism and if you can make audiences invest in your story and character for two hours, despite it's flaws, then it is still largely successful without having to be high art or anything.
Yes absolutely. I totally compartmentalize all this stuff and seek out different forms of entertainment depending on my mood. Sometimes you want escapism. Sometimes you want high drama. Sometimes you just want to laugh and have fun. Sometimes you want to think. Sometimes you just want some adrenaline pumping action. I think I am pretty open minded about things but I don't expect Shakespeare or Kafka from a film based on dudes in capes. It's fun chatting with folks who dig this stuff as much as I do but sometimes I need to cool it on the over analyzing because it can diminish the pure joy of it all. In the end, I'm just really grateful to see movies that lovingly bring all these characters to life from my childhood.

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Old 12-15-2014, 02:02 PM   #24
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Default Re: Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

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Oh, lol...some of you people take things more literally than Drax sometimes. My mentioning Sauron was an example of my predilection towards favoring the bad guys in movies, not a critique of the character. And I do tend to I forget not everybody reads Tolkien's books instead deriving their knowledge from the movies. In the Silmarillion and other works released posthumously Sauron himself is much more fleshed out a villain. He started out a faithful apprentice of Aulë and learned the craft of Blacksmithing from him. Morgoth actually seduced him to the Dark Side and made him his second in command until his fall. Before he lost his fleshly body he was a shapeshifter. He favored a fair form to easily fool men. But I'm just skimming the surface with Sauron in the books.
Well yeah if you're throwing the Silmarillion in there then it's a different story. I was speaking solely from the perspective of the films. A lot of people around here don't read comics let alone prose let alone Tolkien let alone a Biblical scale epic like the Silmarillion. LOL.

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Originally Posted by Godzilla2000 View Post
You know, we've been so inundated with so many sympathetic villains, I think I'd like to see a villain that's just born pure evil for once...oh, like Thanos. Sympathy should not apply to him because he's just ruthless. Badass evildoer with a creepy fetish for death quite literally should. I am so ready to just unequivocally hate the villain because of his/her lack of sympathy. Give me a good reason to cheer for the Good Guys.
Yeah I'm down with that. There was nothing sympathetic about Ledger's Joker but he's one of the best villains we've ever seen IMO.


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Old 12-15-2014, 02:10 PM   #25
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Default Re: Does Disney Owned Marvel Hate Villains?

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Originally Posted by Godzilla2000 View Post
You know, we've been so inundated with so many sympathetic villains, I think I'd like to see a villain that's just born pure evil for once...oh, like Thanos. Sympathy should not apply to him because he's just ruthless. Badass evildoer with a creepy fetish for death quite literally should. I am so ready to just unequivocally hate the villain because of his/her lack of sympathy. Give me a good reason to cheer for the Good Guys.
See, you're coming at this from a limited perspective. No one, absolutely no one, is born evil. It becomes a mature of nature versus nurture. You can accomplish this and still have someone to root for. Someone that seems villainous by our standards may be acting in accord with the accepted norms of their culture or race if we are discussing aliens.

Ledger's Joker, Bane and Talia, even Crane and Ra's could all be heroes of their own tale, told from their perspectives. Briefly: Joker was sick of society's two-faced nature, Crane wanted to lash out at people more powerful than himself. Ra's was seeking to avoid dealing with his wife's death. Bane and Talia were fulfilling the goals of their shared father figure, though you also have Talia acting as a sort of narrative device, Bane's sense of righteousness that he fought hard to maintain while in exile from the League (symbolized by his defense of Talia when the prisoners tried to murder her, or worse).

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