History Main / BigBAd

22nd May '17 3:36:15 PM DustSnitch
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[[folder:Mythology and Religion]]
* Literature/TheBible:
** The Pharaoh in the ''Literature/BookOfExodus'', enslaving the Israelites and doing everything he can to defy the will of God, even after accepting defeat. Serving as the greatest opposition to Moses and God outside of the personal flaws of the people of Israel, the horrid Pharaoh serves as the UrExample of the Big Bad, predating most examples of the trope by centuries or millennia. The age shows, as the Pharaoh is killed long before the end of Exodus, which details the travels of the Israelites from the Red Sea and God's revelation of the Mosaic Law, as opposed to more contemporary Big Bads who tend to provide conflict for the entire work.
** [[EvilChancellor Haman]] in the ''Literature/BookOfEsther'', who tries to convince the Persian Emperor to wipe out the Jews.
** {{Satan}} in the Literature/BookOfJob, Literature/TheFourGospels, and the Literature/BookOfRevelation. In the former, Satan attempts to get Job to denounce his faith and strips away all his fortune from him. In the latter, Satan (as the dragon with seven crowns) corrupts the world with the Whore of Babylon, attempts to get people to worship the Beast from the sea, is revealed to be the Serpent from [[Literature/BookOfGenesis Genesis]] and ultimately, battles the armies of Heaven until he is thrown into the Lake of Fire.
** [[CorruptChurch The Pharisees]] in Literature/TheFourGospels, who try to challenge Jesus at every turn and are the only people who Jesus gets mad at throughout his travels. Notably averted with {{Satan}}, who [[GreaterScopeVillain is a background character with minimal involvement in the plot]].
[[/folder]]



* ''Theatre/{{Hamlet}}'': Claudius usurped the throne that rightfully belongs to Prince Hamlet, who spends the play plotting to kill Claudius.



* ''Theatre/{{Macbeth}}'': [[VillainProtagonist Macbeth himself]] kills the good king Duncan and ruins Scotland with his corrupt reign, acting as the main villain despite being the protagonist of the story.
* ''Theatre/{{Othello}}'': [[ManipulativeBastard Iago]] misleads every character in the play so he can ruin the life of the title character
* ''Theatre/RichardIII'': [[VillainProtagonist Richard III]]

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* Creator/WilliamShakespeare has various antagonists in his plays. The comedies tend to lack them though; if a major antagonist ''is'' present in a comedy, they will rarely be legitimately evil. [[note]]This list is incomplete. Feel free to help.[[/note]]
** ''Theatre/{{Hamlet}}'': Claudius usurped the throne that rightfully belongs to Prince Hamlet, who spends the play plotting to kill Claudius.
** ''Theatre/{{Othello}}'': [[ManipulativeBastard Iago]] misleads every character in the play so he can ruin the life of the title character
**
''Theatre/{{Macbeth}}'': [[VillainProtagonist Macbeth himself]] kills the good king Duncan and ruins Scotland with his corrupt reign, acting as the main villain despite being the protagonist of the story.
* ''Theatre/{{Othello}}'': %%** ''Theatre/TheTamingOfTheShrew'': [[OverprotectiveDad Baptista Minola.]]
%%** ''Theatre/TitusAndronicus'': [[CardCarryingVillain Aaron the Moor.]]
%%** ''Theatre/RomeoAndJuliet'': [[FeudingFamilies The heads of the Montague and Capulet families]], though Tybalt is the most antagonistic.
%%** ''Theatre/TheMerchantOfVenice'': [[GreedyJew Shylock]] [[AlternateCharacterInterpretation or Antonio and Portia.]]
%%** ''Theatre/MuchAdoAboutNothing'': [[BastardBastard Don John.]]
%%** ''Theatre/TwelfthNight'': [[IneffectualSympatheticVillain Malvolio.]]
%%** ''Theatre/KingLear'': [[BigBadDuumvirate Goneril and Regan]] at first, later [[BastardBastard Edmund.]]
%%** ''Theatre/JuliusCaesar'':
[[ManipulativeBastard Iago]] misleads every character in the play so he can ruin the life Cassius.]]
%%** And
of the title character
* ''Theatre/RichardIII'': [[VillainProtagonist
course, Richard III]]III, the VillainProtagonist of ''Theatre/RichardIII''.
22nd May '17 11:58:50 AM jtierney50
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* ''Theatre/LesMiserables'': being one of the only lawful characters in the entire show, he naturally opposes and antagonizes every main character: he tries to arrest Valjean multiple times, he defends Fantine's rapist by having her arrested instead, he threatens Eponine and the Thenardiers with arrest (and is presumably already familiar with the latters' antics), and spies on and directly opposes Marius and Enjolras's revolution. Curiously, despite being the main villain, he is not the most evil character in the show: that honor goes to the Thenardiers, who are full-blown ChaoticEvil compared to Javert's Lawful Neutral, and worst of all, [[KarmaHoudini get away with it all]].
19th Apr '17 12:17:37 PM crowe22
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3rd Apr '17 2:57:19 PM papyru30
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* ''{{Theatre/Urinetown}}'': [[CorruptCorporateExecutive Cladwell P. Cladwell]] head of the Urine Good Company
6th Mar '17 2:19:48 AM LondonKdS
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See also BigBadDuumvirate for two (or more) Big Bads working together ([[EvilVsEvil or not]]). Sometimes a Big Bad will get their start as a servant to another villain -- if that's the case, they're a DragonAscendant. If the character who fills the role of Big Bad in most meaningful ways is nominally subordinate to someone else (someone significantly less menacing by comparison), they are a DragonInChief. If the story has many Big Bads at once who ''don't'' work together, see BigBadEnsemble. TheBigBadShuffle occurs when there are multiple candidates for the Big Bad position. If the Big Bad doesn't start out as bad but develops over the course of the story, it's BigBadSlippage.

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See also BigBadDuumvirate for two (or more) Big Bads working together ([[EvilVsEvil or not]]). Sometimes a Big Bad will get their start as a servant to another villain -- if that's the case, they're a DragonAscendant. If the character who fills the role of Big Bad in most meaningful ways is nominally subordinate to someone else (someone significantly less menacing by comparison), they are a DragonInChief. If the story has many Big Bads at once who ''don't'' work together, see BigBadEnsemble. TheBigBadShuffle occurs when there are multiple candidates for the Big Bad position. If the Big Bad doesn't start out as bad but develops over the course of the story, it's BigBadSlippage.
BigBadSlippage. If the Big Bad of one section of a work doesn't die on being defeated and stays around as a character in a different plot role (reformed or not), that's ExBigBad.
8th Jan '17 6:33:51 PM DustSnitch
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* ''Theatre/TheCrucible'': [[ManipulativeBastard Abigail Williams]], [[HangingJudge Deputy Governor Thomas Danforth]] [[BigBadEnsemble and]] [[AristocratsAreEvil Thomas Putnam]]

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* ''Theatre/TheCrucible'': [[ManipulativeBastard Abigail Williams]], [[HangingJudge Deputy Governor Thomas Danforth]] [[BigBadEnsemble and]] [[AristocratsAreEvil Thomas Putnam]]Williams]] manipulates the girls of Salem into obeying her and gets them all to help accuse others of witchcraft, condemning innocent men and women to imprisonment and death in order to escape punishment for her own evils.



* ''Theatre/{{Hamlet}}'': [[TheUsurper Claudius]]
* ''Theatre/IntoTheWoods'': [[WickedWitch The Witch]] in the first act and [[AvengingTheVillain the Giantess]] in the second, [[spoiler: and a big part of the heroes' character arc is realizing neither is exactly evil]].
* ''Theatre/{{Macbeth}}'': [[VillainProtagonist Macbeth himself]].
* ''Theatre/{{Othello}}'': [[ManipulativeBastard Iago]]

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* ''Theatre/{{Hamlet}}'': [[TheUsurper Claudius]]
Claudius usurped the throne that rightfully belongs to Prince Hamlet, who spends the play plotting to kill Claudius.
* ''Theatre/IntoTheWoods'': [[WickedWitch The Witch]] Subverted, as there is no official main villain in the first act show. The Witch might come off as the villain at first, but as the show progresses, we learn that her actions are very much justifiable, and [[AvengingTheVillain eventually, she becomes extremely sympathetic ([[spoiler: mainly after Rapunzel's death]]). The Giantess, while being a major antagonistic force, simply wanted justice for the Giantess]] in death of her husband, and the second, [[spoiler: chaos and a big part of the heroes' death that she had caused are often portrayed as accidents (considering that she was near sighted and had lost her glasses). The only character arc to be truly evil and despicable is realizing neither is exactly evil]].
the Wolf, and even he's given a hint of sympathetic light (''"Ask a wolf's mother!"'').
* ''Theatre/{{Macbeth}}'': [[VillainProtagonist Macbeth himself]].
himself]] kills the good king Duncan and ruins Scotland with his corrupt reign, acting as the main villain despite being the protagonist of the story.
* ''Theatre/{{Othello}}'': [[ManipulativeBastard Iago]]Iago]] misleads every character in the play so he can ruin the life of the title character
27th Dec '16 10:33:37 AM KingBowser9001
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A Big Bad is not a catch-all term for the biggest, ugliest or even primary villain of any given story. The badass leader of the [[QuirkyMinibossSquad outlaw gang]] that causes the most personal trouble is ''not'' the Big Bad. The [[CorruptCorporateExecutive railroad tycoon]] who turns out to be ''using'' the gang as muscle is the Big Bad. TheManBehindTheMan is very common for this trope, leaving the reveal of the big bad as TheChessmaster behind it all and proving themselves far more clever and resourceful than the VillainOfTheWeek. Sometimes the BigBad is the grand enemy of the entire story as an OverarchingVillain. At other times, the Big Bad is an ArcVillain who causes trouble for a period of time only to be replaced by another Big Bad with ambitious plans.

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A Big Bad This trope is not a catch-all term for the biggest, ugliest or even primary villain of any given story. The badass leader of the [[QuirkyMinibossSquad outlaw gang]] that causes the most personal trouble is TheHeavy, ''not'' the Big Bad. The [[CorruptCorporateExecutive railroad tycoon]] who turns out to be ''using'' the gang as muscle is the Big Bad. TheManBehindTheMan is very common for this trope, leaving the reveal of the big bad as TheChessmaster behind it all and proving themselves far more clever and resourceful than the VillainOfTheWeek. Sometimes the BigBad is the grand enemy of the entire story as an OverarchingVillain. At other times, the Big Bad is an ArcVillain who causes trouble for a period of time only to be replaced by another Big Bad with ambitious plans.



The term "Big Bad" was popularized in ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer''. It was characteristic of Buffy's Big Bads for their identity or nature, or even the fact that they are the Big Bad at all, to remain unclear for considerable time. Occasionally, characters would even refer to themselves as "the Big Bad", whether or not they were; this is a BigBadWannabe (although Spike was the character to do this the most, and he was part of the BigBadDuumvirate of Season 2 along with Drusilla until Angelus showed up). The structure of Buffy placed the Big Bad as being crucial to the HalfArcSeason, half the episodes are {{filler}} dealing with unrelated enemies while the other half involved the ongoing MythArc with the BigBad. Each season can easily be defined by who the Big Bad was.

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The term "Big Bad" was popularized in ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer''. It was characteristic of Buffy's Big Bads for their identity or nature, or even the fact that they are the Big Bad at all, to remain unclear for considerable time. Occasionally, characters would even refer to themselves as "the Big Bad", whether Bad". Whether or not they were; were, though, this is a BigBadWannabe (although Spike was the character to do this the most, and he was part of the BigBadDuumvirate of Season 2 along with Drusilla until Angelus showed up).BigBadWannabe. The structure of Buffy placed the Big Bad as being crucial to the HalfArcSeason, half the episodes are {{filler}} dealing with unrelated enemies while the other half involved the ongoing MythArc with the BigBad. Each season can easily be defined by who the Big Bad was.
30th Nov '16 7:52:21 PM HamburgerTime
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* ''Theatre/{{Annie}}'': [[OutlawCouple Daniel "Rooster" Hannigan and Lily St. Regis]]
30th Oct '16 9:53:19 PM HamburgerTime
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* ''Theatre/{{Gypsy}}'': "[[StageMom Mama]]" [[VillainProtagonist Rose Hovick]]




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* ''Theatre/WestSideStory'': [[GangBangers Riff Lorton and Bernardo Nunez]], [[BigBadEnsemble opposed to one another]]. [[spoiler: Both are killed in the Act One Finale, and Bernardo's DragonAscendant Chino Martin takes over as main antagonist]].
27th Oct '16 10:15:02 PM DustSnitch
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* ''Theatre/{{Hamilton}}'': Aaron Burr, who notably serves as both the {{Deuteragonist}} and an InteractiveNarrator.



* ''Theatre/IntoTheWoods'': [[WickedWitch The Witch]] in the first act and [[AvengingTheVillain the Giantess]] in the second, [[spoiler: and a big part of the heroes' character arc is realizing [[VillainHasAPoint neither is exactly evil]]]].

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* ''Theatre/IntoTheWoods'': [[WickedWitch The Witch]] in the first act and [[AvengingTheVillain the Giantess]] in the second, [[spoiler: and a big part of the heroes' character arc is realizing [[VillainHasAPoint neither is exactly evil]]]].evil]].
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http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=Main.BigBAd