History Main / BrainwashingForTheGreaterGood

19th Sep '17 10:21:29 PM Peteman
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* Bob from ''WesternAnimation/{{ReBoot}}'' believes that because viruses are programmed to do harm, one can reprogram them into sprites and benign viruses. When presented with the possibility, Megabyte describes this as "a [[FateWorseThanDeath fate worse than deletion]]."
10th Sep '17 1:37:44 PM Aiguille
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* ''Podcast/WithinTheWires''' FalseUtopia ensures the nonviolence of its citizens in the aftermath of devastating war through a combination of {{cybernetic|seatyoursoul}}ally-enhanced repression of memories at age ten, and batteries of psychological programming. The protagonist is a patient, who, after illustrating deviant behavior, is supposedly undergoing a rehabilitative version of the latter during their stay at as an inpatient at a research hospital called the Institute.

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* ''Podcast/WithinTheWires''' FalseUtopia ensures the nonviolence of its citizens in the aftermath of devastating war through a combination of {{cybernetic|seatyoursoul}}ally-enhanced repression of memories at age ten, and batteries of psychological programming. The Season 1's protagonist is a patient, who, after illustrating deviant behavior, is supposedly undergoing a rehabilitative version of the latter during their stay at as an inpatient at a research hospital called the Institute.
22nd Aug '17 4:59:32 PM GeekProphet
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** Further subverted in Creator/RobertAHeinlein's "Coventry". The society created by those revolutionaries develops a legal system where a criminal is examined by psychiatrists to determine his motivations. If the motivations are such that the person is deemed a danger to society, they are given a choice. They can either have the psychiatrists treat them to correct their anti-social tendencies, an effective form of mental conditioning, or they can chose exile to Coventry, a section of the country walled-off behind a force field. Anybody is allowed to leave Coventry so long as they are willing to have the psychiatrists treat them.
17th Aug '17 11:37:00 AM FuzzyBoots
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* In Literature/WhateleyAcademy story, "Razzle Dazzle", Mephisto comments on Doc Wilde's claimed "surgical process that ‘excised’ a part of the brain that could work evil" and points out that it was basically a lobotomy.
--> Townsend’s eyes glittered, and his grin turned hard. “Simple. You CAN’T. It was brainwashing, plain and simple, accompanied by burning out certain bits of the brain with electric probes inserted directly into the cerebrum. Yeah, they were okay afterwards… mostly… but they got worse, mostly after people stopped paying attention. Now, while I didn’t know all of the guys that he did that to, I DID know a fair number of them. And they were drooling wrecks, who could barely eat off a plate! .... Y’know, before, they’d been pretty sharp guys. Not NICE guys, but…” Townsend tapped his temple, “…sharp enough to be a challenge to Doc Wilde. Then? One of ‘em had to work hard for an hour to tie his shoes!
31st Jul '17 6:57:29 PM UmbrellasWereAwesome
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* This is the MO of [[VideoGame/Persona5 the Phantom Thieves of Heart]]: stealing the hearts of corrupt people to perform a HeelFaceBrainwashing on them. Ironically, despite being a typical [[KnightTemplar Shin Megami Tensei Law character]], [[HeroAntagonist Goro Akechi]] finds this unacceptable and this is one of the reasons why he ([[SixthRanger initialy]]) opposes the protagonists.
30th Jun '17 4:56:52 PM zarpaulus
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** When homosexuality was still a crime in most Western nations many gay men were chemically castrated, including UsefulNotes/AlanTuring. It's commonly believed to have been a factor in his suicide.
14th Jun '17 6:20:29 PM Alberloze
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* ''Webcomic/PerfectionEngine'':
** The Eidolon King Animamundi completely transforms his kingdom and his people to strive for perfect morality and society as a form of penance for their Maker. The Eidolons and their King strive for their Maker to return to them, believing she was repulsed by their flaws and imperfections. Society is now peaceful, kind, beautiful, and perfect, one would think...
10th Jun '17 8:13:49 AM WikiGuardianAngel
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* In Fanfic/WaterAerobicsForTheAquaphobic, [[JerkAss Lucius Malfoy]] gets immersed in [[Manga/RanmaOneHalf Jusenkyo's Spring of the Drowned Good Samaritan]], and becomes an IncorruptiblePurePureness [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin good samaritan]] who is ridiculously nice and gracious and coddles ''everyone''. Because the curse is triggered by cold water and deactivated by hot water, Dumbledore places a compulsion on Lucius that makes him avoid hot water, and [[PutOnABus sends him off]] to China to research the Jusenkyo curse and get him out of his hair and [[BigBad Voldermort's]] hands.

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* In Fanfic/WaterAerobicsForTheAquaphobic, ''Fanfic/WaterAreobicsForTheAquaphobic'', [[JerkAss Lucius Malfoy]] gets immersed in [[Manga/RanmaOneHalf Jusenkyo's Spring of the Drowned Good Samaritan]], and becomes an IncorruptiblePurePureness [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin good samaritan]] who is ridiculously nice and gracious and coddles ''everyone''. Because the curse is triggered by cold water and deactivated by hot water, Dumbledore places a compulsion on Lucius that makes him avoid hot water, and [[PutOnABus sends him off]] to China to research the Jusenkyo curse and get keep him out of his hair and [[BigBad Voldermort's]] hands.
10th Jun '17 8:11:37 AM WikiGuardianAngel
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So, the heroes have finally captured [[NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast Duke Diabolico]], yay! ... [[AndThenWhat so now what?]] He's repeatedly proven he not only [[CardCarryingVillain doesn't want to reform]], but will turn any such attempts into another [[EvilPlan dastardly scheme]] by [[FalselyReformedVillain masquerading as reformed]], and the CardboardPrison is looking especially porous right now. Plus, he's proven smart enough to defy being a {{Self Disposing Villain}}. The heroes [[ThouShallNotKill couldn't just kill him]], and even if they [[IfYouKillHimYouWillBeJustLikeHim weren't too principled against killing]], he's also avoided [[IDidWhatIHadToDo giving the heroes]] (and [[BadGuysDoTheDirtyWork other villains]]) reasons to kill him. Well, there is still one more thing left you can do, a [[{{Brainwash}} Brainwashing]] ... [[TitleDrop for the greater good]]!

The way it is done can have varying degrees of squick. Heroes might go the "soft" route and administer {{Care Bear Stare}}s, use ThePowerOfLove and [[ThePowerOfFriendship Friendship]], and in conjunction with [[TalkingTheMonsterToDeath "motivational" speeches]] trigger a [[MoreThanMindControl quasi-voluntary]] HeelFaceTurn. However, a more extreme villain might require a more extreme method, and perhaps a shot of LaserGuidedAmnesia, a [[LossOfIdentity new personality]], or a RestrainingBolt might be in order, or even a MindRape to screw him thoroughly. And Voilà! Duke Diabolico, the [[ForTheEvulz most evil]] and [[LargeHam theatrical]] supervillain to grace [[MonsterOfTheWeek the Saturday weekend]] is now a codger who willingly helps people cross the street. Who cares about MindOverManners, right?

Naturally, this trope involves [[GreyAndGreyMorality Grey And Grey]] or BlackAndGreyMorality at best, because like any brainwashing, it involves compromising the free will of the brainwashee. If done by TheFace, they are probably also running on BlackAndGreyMorality or GreyAndGreyMorality, otherwise there is probably some serious ValuesDissonance going on in the work. If TheAntagonist is doing the brainwashing, then it is treated as any regular ol'e {{Brainwashing}}, and expect them to be of the WellIntentionedExtremist or KnightTemplar variety justifying it through TheEvilsOfFreeWill. If regularly done by either side, there is the ever present danger of JumpingOffTheSlipperySlope until [[FelonyMisdemeanor litterers are brainwashed]] into [[UpToEleven creepy all-loving paragons]], and then having it taken from there because UtopiaJustifiesTheMeans.

The brainwashing has a tendency to be flimsy though, and when it slips the results are often pretty messy. Duke Diabolico may have been helping an old lady cross a street when he just spontaneously relapses and throws her under a semi. His minions or allies may come by and [[{{Deprogram}} break the brainwashing]] for him. He still might find himself [[BecomingTheMask liking good]] [[GoodFeelsGood more than evil]] and do a HeelFaceTurn on his own accord. He might face a HeroicBSOD as he [[AmnesiacDissonance grapples with]] a hidden [[HeelFaceMindScrew lifetime of evil]]. but if he doesn't, [[BrainwashedAndCrazy Run Away. Really Quickly]].

The brainwashing doesn't have to specifically be done to force a HeelFaceTurn. Upholding TheMasquerade is an example of this. If {{Muggles}} were to stumble on the existence of TheMasquerade and [[TheMasquerade The Masqueraders]] have the ethical sense to [[ThouShaltNotKillMuggles not erase them from existence]], then some LaserGuidedAmnesia is in order to keep them oblivious. Of course, being {{Muggles}}, the ethics of this isn't discussed much. This applies especially when it is justified that TheWorldIsNotReady for the [[BrokenMasquerade masquerade to be broken]], or that it is [[ForYourOwnGood for their own good]].

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So, the heroes have finally captured [[NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast Duke Diabolico]], yay! ... [[AndThenWhat so now what?]] He's repeatedly proven he not only [[CardCarryingVillain doesn't want to reform]], but will turn any such attempts into another [[EvilPlan dastardly scheme]] by [[FalselyReformedVillain masquerading as reformed]], and the CardboardPrison is looking especially porous right now. Plus, he's proven smart enough to defy being a {{Self Disposing Villain}}. The heroes [[ThouShallNotKill couldn't just kill him]], and even if they [[IfYouKillHimYouWillBeJustLikeHim weren't too principled against killing]], he's also avoided [[IDidWhatIHadToDo giving the heroes]] (and [[BadGuysDoTheDirtyWork other villains]]) reasons to kill him. Well, there is still one him.

There's
more thing left you can do, option: to do a [[{{Brainwash}} Brainwashing]] ... [[TitleDrop for the greater good]]!

good]]! The way it is done can have varying degrees of squick. Heroes might go the "soft" route and administer {{Care Bear Stare}}s, use ThePowerOfLove and [[ThePowerOfFriendship Friendship]], and in conjunction with [[TalkingTheMonsterToDeath "motivational" speeches]] trigger a [[MoreThanMindControl quasi-voluntary]] HeelFaceTurn. However, a more extreme villain might require a more extreme method, and perhaps a shot of LaserGuidedAmnesia, a RestrainingBolt, or even a [[LossOfIdentity new personality]], or a RestrainingBolt might personality]] may be in order, or even a MindRape to screw him thoroughly. And Voilà! Duke Diabolico, the [[ForTheEvulz most evil]] and [[LargeHam theatrical]] supervillain to grace [[MonsterOfTheWeek the Saturday weekend]] is now a codger who willingly helps people cross the street.good-hearted codger. Who cares about MindOverManners, right?

Naturally, this trope involves [[GreyAndGreyMorality Grey And Grey]] or BlackAndGreyMorality at best, because like any brainwashing, it involves compromising the free will of the brainwashee. If done by TheFace, [[TheFace the heroes]], they are probably also running on BlackAndGreyMorality or GreyAndGreyMorality, otherwise there is probably some serious ValuesDissonance going on in the work. If TheAntagonist is doing the brainwashing, then it is treated as any regular ol'e {{Brainwashing}}, and expect them to be a LawfulEvil character of the WellIntentionedExtremist or KnightTemplar variety justifying it through TheEvilsOfFreeWill. If regularly done by either side, brainwashing is policy, there is also the ever present danger of JumpingOffTheSlipperySlope until [[FelonyMisdemeanor litterers are brainwashed]] into [[UpToEleven creepy all-loving paragons]], and then having it taken from there paragons]] because UtopiaJustifiesTheMeans.

The brainwashing has a tendency to be flimsy though, and when it slips the results are often pretty messy. Duke Diabolico may have been helping an old lady cross a street when he just spontaneously relapses and throws her under a semi. His minions or allies may come by and [[{{Deprogram}} break the brainwashing]] for him. He still might find himself [[BecomingTheMask liking good]] [[GoodFeelsGood more than evil]] and do a HeelFaceTurn on his own accord. He might face a HeroicBSOD as he [[AmnesiacDissonance grapples with]] a hidden [[HeelFaceMindScrew lifetime of evil]]. but if he doesn't, [[BrainwashedAndCrazy Run Away. Really Quickly]].

OhCrap.

The brainwashing doesn't have to specifically be done to force a HeelFaceTurn. Upholding change one's moral inclinations; upholding TheMasquerade is an example of this. If {{Muggles}} were to stumble on the existence of TheMasquerade and [[TheMasquerade The Masqueraders]] have the ethical sense to [[ThouShaltNotKillMuggles not erase them from existence]], then some LaserGuidedAmnesia is in order to keep them oblivious. Of course, being {{Muggles}}, the ethics of this isn't discussed much. This applies especially when it is justified [[JustifiedTrope justified]] that TheWorldIsNotReady for the [[BrokenMasquerade masquerade to be broken]], or that it is [[ForYourOwnGood for their own good]].



* Franchise/{{Superman}}'s {{Elseworlds}} counterpart in ''ComicBook/SupermanRedSon'' did this, to disturbing effect. The Batman imitators mopping the floor still in their costumes were particularly creepy; of course, [[spoiler:President]] Superman has a lot of reason to hate Batman. Unfortunately, the comic {{Time Skip}}s over the stage at which Superman decided to start cyberlobotomizing his enemies so as to maintain control without having to kill anybody, so by the time we see it it's treated as normal--a good drama call, but frustrating.
* Franchise/DocSavage used to use psychosurgery on his enemies to remove criminal tendencies. ''[[UtopiaJustifiesTheMeans Hey, If it works, it works!]]''

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* Franchise/{{Superman}}'s {{Elseworlds}} counterpart in ''ComicBook/SupermanRedSon'' did this, to disturbing effect. The Batman imitators mopping the floor still in their costumes were particularly creepy; of course, [[spoiler:President]] Superman has a lot of reason to hate Batman. Batman in this story. Unfortunately, the comic {{Time Skip}}s over the stage at which Superman decided to start cyberlobotomizing his enemies so as to maintain control without having to kill anybody, so anybody. We never see the decision making that developed into this, and by the time we see it it's treated as normal--a good drama call, but frustrating.
* Franchise/DocSavage used to use psychosurgery on his enemies to remove criminal tendencies. ''[[UtopiaJustifiesTheMeans Hey, If it works, it works!]]''


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* In Fanfic/WaterAerobicsForTheAquaphobic, [[JerkAss Lucius Malfoy]] gets immersed in [[Manga/RanmaOneHalf Jusenkyo's Spring of the Drowned Good Samaritan]], and becomes an IncorruptiblePurePureness [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin good samaritan]] who is ridiculously nice and gracious and coddles ''everyone''. Because the curse is triggered by cold water and deactivated by hot water, Dumbledore places a compulsion on Lucius that makes him avoid hot water, and [[PutOnABus sends him off]] to China to research the Jusenkyo curse and get him out of his hair and [[BigBad Voldermort's]] hands.
4th Jun '17 1:36:00 PM KingLyger
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* ''VideoGame/Persona5'' uses this as the modus operandi for the Phantom Thieves. They induce HeelFaceBrainwashing on adults whose crimes can't be traced by the police, or otherwise will simply be left alone as "ItCantBeHelped". Deconstructed in that the protagonists themselves, even after changing the hearts of some [[HateSink truly terrible people]], wonder if what they're doing is the right thing.
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