- I LOVE characters- movies, books, TV shows, all of them! Sometimes, I tend to obsess over them.
- I love antiheroes, more than most people can understand.
- I also love 'Top' lists!
Tuesday, March 12, 2013
Top Six Favorite Antiheroes
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There's something you need to know about me. Actually, there's three things you need to know about me. And they are as follows...
That is why today's post will be-- My Top Six Favorite Antiheroes! Why Top Six? Well, because.... I couldn't bring it to a normal number, like ten or five.
I hope to post a 'Top' list every Wednesday... at least for a while. I have a few planned. :D
For those of you who don't know what an antihero is, let me explain.
An antihero is either a villain who displays noble and admirable qualities usually associated with a hero. Or a hero who displays such negative qualities that are usually associated with villains. It's quite simple, really. These characters are often so complicated and pitiable that I have fallen in love with them. (That's just an expression; I don't really love love them, if you know what I mean. ;)
So without further adieu, let the list begin!
CAUTION: Possible spoilers ahead.
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#1: Prince Zuko
Story: Avatar; the Last Airbender
From almost the first moment I saw him, I pitied this young character. Something about him struck me, and he instantly became my favorite character.
As the primary villain of Book One of Avatar, Zuko is painted at first as an arrogant, hot-headed prince of the Fire Nation, obsessed with capturing the Avatar and restoring his honor. Over time, it is revealed that Zuko was banished from his homeland by his father, and that his only hope of things ever returning to normal is if he captures the Avatar and brings him back to the Fire Nation.
As the series progresses, we find that perhaps Zuko isn't without motivation for his actions. While he is self-centered and completely obsessed, he also has a vulnerable, but honorable side. And, to my great pleasure and joy, we get to watch his journey from spoiled prince to great hero.
#2: Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader
Story: Star Wars
Anakin Skywalker, later known as Darth Vader, is practically the opposite of Zuko. Anakin starts out as a noble, heroic young man, who, although slightly self-important and impetuous, is very caring and loyal. He is the Chosen One, destined to bring balance to the Force.
However, over time, he falls under the influence of the sinister Sith Lord, Darth Sideous. Sideous, under the alias of Chancellor Palpatine, slowly poisons Anakin's mind with the thoughts and temptations of the Dark Side, playing to his pride and ambition. He convinces Anakin that in order to save his beloved Padme, he must embrace the power of the Dark Side of the Force and become a Sith Lord.
Eventually, Anakin's love for his family, as well as his lust for power, wins out, and he betrays all of his friends among the Jedi, becoming convinced that the Jedi are evil, a pestilence which he must rid from the galaxy.
Fortunately, near the end of his life, Anakin's son Luke was able to convince him to return to his original loyalties and defeat Emperor Sideous and restore balance to the Force, thus fulfilling his destiny.
Story: Thor/The Avengers
I don't know if Loki counts as an antihero, but I think that in Thor, at least, he does.
As the younger brother of Thor, and a prince of Asgard, Loki is known among his fellow Asgardians as a weakling, who's greatest strength is in magic, trickery, and mischief. Despite his great friendship with his brother, it is a well-known fact that he is jealous of Thor. He feels that Odin, their father, has always favored Thor over him, and he desperately wishes for a chance to prove himself to his family.
Eventually, Loki finds that his true heritage does not lie in Asgard, but in Jotunheim. He is a Frost Giant, son of the great warlord Laufey, a terrible enemy of Asgard.
Horrified by the truth, Loki angrily accuses Odin of lying to him for his entire life, and suspects that Odin only wanted to use him for political gain.
Over the events of Thor, Loki descends from a loyal, loving brother to a conniving scheming usurper, determined to prove to Odin that he is just as worthy as Thor to rule Asgard. In his twisted mind, he thinks the genocide of the Frost Giants is the answer.
By the time The Avengers takes place, Loki seems to have fully embraced his evil nature, and blatantly attempts to conquer Earth and rule it as our king.
But fans everywhere, including me, anxiously await the arrival of Thor 2: the Dark World, in which we are given the hope of Loki's possible redemption.
#4: Elphaba/the Wicked Witch of the West
Story: Wicked (the musical)
Elphaba, also known as the Wicked Witch of the West, was different from the moment of her birth. Born with bright green skin, Elphaba is looked down upon by her father, younger sister, and all of the local people. She also blames herself for the death of her mother, as her father was so afraid that she would bear another green child that he made her chew a white-weed during her pregnancy, resulting in her weakening and eventual death in childbirth.
However, despite her outward appearance, Elphaba has a pure, strong heart, and all she wants to do is help people, using her powerful gift of magic. Unfortunately, it seems that everything she does goes wrong, resulting in pain and suffering for those she tries to help. Eventually, she is outlawed after trying to expose the Wizard Oz's lies and trickery, and she is forced to flee to the West. The people soon nickname her the Wicked Witch of the West, and believer her to be an evil, vindictive antagonist intent on destroying their country. And, in time, Elphaba herself comes to believe herself wicked because of her apparent inability to do anything good.
However, deep inside, she still maintains a desire to redeem herself, and have someone know her for who she truly is, and not be blinded by her exterior. She is truly a tragic character, and I cannot watch The Wizard of Oz without seeing her in a completely different light.
#5: Tùrin Tùrambar
Story: Narn I Hin Hurin: The Sons of Hurin
Tùrn Tùrambar is the son of Hurin, and when Hurin is captured and cursed by the evil Morgoth, his entire family suffers for it.
Even from his childhood, it seems that Tùrin is doomed for darkness. He does his best to protect his mother and sister and become a hero, worthy of his father's name. However, his own pride, and others' ill interference repeatedly brings about his failure.
Tùrin does become a hero, but the price is high. As his friends and family fall around him, he blames himself for their deaths, and wanders far and wide. He tries to put his dark past behind him, but Morgoth's curse will not easily let him go. When his ruin eventually comes, it leaves everyone feeling heartbroken, and a great emptiness is left in his place.
#6: Guy of Gisborne
Story: Robin Hood (BBC, 2006)
In Season One of Robin Hood, Guy of Gisborne is the Sheriff of Nottingham's right hand man. He becomes romantically interested in Lady Marian, but his reputation for being a ruthless tyrant causes her to treat his advances with contempt. However, Guy's feelings for her seem to be genuine, as he constantly tries to prove to her that he does have a caring side. She eventually begins to care for him, though perhaps not in the way that she loves Robin Hood.
At times in the series, we can almost hope that Guy will give up his wicked ways to join in the fight for good, all for the love of Marian. However, after a devastating event in Season 2, our hopes are crushed... or are they? Because in Season 3, Guy joins Robin's gang- albeit reluctantly. Eventually, however, he comes to value the friendship of the other members, and by the finale, it is shown that he is loyal to Robin to the end.