Created By: Xzenu on September 29, 2010 Last Edited By: Xzenu on October 28, 2010
Troped

The Big Bad Wolf

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Not just any Big, Badass Wolf, but THE Big Bad Wolf. The one with the three little pigs, or Little Red Riding Hood, or both.

Since this character is a common target of Alternate Character Interpretation: When adding an example, please specify HOW The Big Bad Wolf is portrayed.

Please note that the character doesn't have to be neither baddass nor a wolf to fit this trope. Those are traditional characteristics of the character, but Alternate Character Interpretation can go quite far. Thus: Sometimes but far from always a Sub-Trope of Big, Badass Wolf.


Examples

Comic Books
  • Disney have one version who is pathetic and always fails to get the three little pigs. His son, who is friends with the pigs, is ashamed of him.
  • In Fables, The Big Bad Wolf is known as Bigby. He's a great hero, with doing the Big Damn Heroes routine as one of his specialties. But he did very bad things a long time ago, and he is still feared and hated by many.
  • In Promethea, TBBW is a primordial monster, fueled by all fear of darkness and predators. He's pretty much invincible.

Film
  • Freeway, being loosely based on the Little Red Riding Hood story, has Kiefer Sutherland playing Bob Wolverton, a serial rapist and murderer.
  • Hard Candy is one particulary disturbing modern version of Little Red Riding Hood, with a girl who call herself Haley in the role of Little Red Riding Hood as well as the woodsman. A internet pedophile named Jeff fills the role of the Big Bad Wolf, luring her over to his place under false pretenses and then starts trying to get her drunk. It goes downhill from there, but maybe not exactly in the way Jeff had planned...
  • In The Woodsman, the main character is not the Big Bad Wolf. Or is he? In this dark drama about a man who have recently been released from twelve years in prison for raping a child, "The Woodsman" and "The Big Bad Wolf" exist only as underlying archtypes for who he wants to be and who he fears to be.

Folklore

Literature
  • The True Story of the Three Little Pigs is a book supposedly told by "A. Wolf" that has the wolf claiming that he just had a very bad cold (sneezing) and the pigs were refusing to give him sugar to bake his poor granny a cake. Oh, and he ate the pigs after he sneezed because it's like seeing a cheeseburger lying around.

Music
  • Sam Sham and the Pharaohs' Little Red Riding Hood is sung from the point-of-view of the Big Bad Wolf, and is sung as a sort of love song, where the Wolf decides to disguise himself so Red won't be frightened away. The fact that this would pretty much prove that he's untrustworthy, thus derailing his chances at getting her to trust him, are lost on him.
  • The music video for the VAST song Pretty When You Cry has lots of visual references to Little Red Riding Hood.

Theater
  • A minor character in Into the Woods, I believe he's basically played straight (but I could be wrong - somebody else with more knowledge than I of the play may want to chime in).

Video Games
  • The Path is an unusual indie art game that is a modern horror adaptation of Little Red Riding Hood. You play as six different girls, all with names that evoke the color red, and each girl has a Mind Screw encounter with a "wolf".
  • World of Warcraft has the Opera event in Karazhan, which sometimes tells the tale of Little Red Riding Hood.

Web Comics
  • In Ever After, The Big Bad Wolf appears to be something similar to the Promethea one - a formless monster of pure fear, which may or may not exist mainly inside the head of the hopelessly-insane Red Riding Hood. Ever After has more-or-less stalled, but Big Bad (and his pet chainsaw-wielding crazygirl) have also put in a fairly major appearance in the still-progressing Sugar Bits.

Western Animation
Community Feedback Replies: 17
  • September 24, 2010
    Xzenu
    I think this character exist in enough versions to deserve a trope of it's own, a subtrope of Big Badass Wolf. But I'm not sure yet, lets see how many examples we get. :-)
  • September 24, 2010
    JoieDeCombat
    I think it's covered by Big Badass Wolf, honestly. While it's true that he's something of a stock character who's had various interpretations, the same is true of many public domain characters, and I haven't noticed that TV Tropes is in the habit of making individual pages for them.
  • September 25, 2010
    BlackDragon
    In Ever After, The Big Bad Wolf appears to be something similar to the Promethea one - a formless monster of pure fear, which may or may not exist mainly inside the head of the hopelessly-insane Red Riding Hood. Ever After has more-or-less stalled, but Big Bad (and his pet chainsaw-wielding crazygirl) have also put in a fairly major appearance in the still-progressing Sugar Bits.
  • September 25, 2010
    Lavalyte
    He's a character in the Shrek movie, wearing a bonnet.
  • September 25, 2010
    Unknown Troper
  • September 25, 2010
    AFP
    • Sam Sham and the Pharaohs' Little Red Riding Hood is sung from the point-of-view of the Big Bad Wolf, and is sung as a sort of love song, where the Wolf decides to disguise himself so Red won't be frightened away. The fact that this would pretty much prove that he's untrustworthy, thus derailing his chances at getting her to trust him, are lost on him.
  • September 25, 2010
    AFP
    • Freeway, being loosely based on the Little Red Riding Hood story, has Kiefer Sutherland playing Bob Wolverton, a serial rapist and murderer.
  • September 25, 2010
    randomsurfer
    There's either an MGM or Looney Tunes cartoon where the Wolf sues LLRH and the woodman, and paints himself as a victim.
  • September 25, 2010
    Unknown Troper
    It's "The Trial of Mr. Wolf", by Warner Bros., and it has the wolf on trial. In his testimony, he tries to convince the jury that Red and her Grandma were trying to kill him for his fur coat. No one buys it, especially after he says "and if I'm lying, I hope to get run over by a streetcar!" and a streetcar smashes through the courtroom and runs him over.
  • September 27, 2010
    AmazinglyEnough
    • The Path is an unusual indie art game that is a modern horror adaptation of Little Red Riding Hood. You play as six different girls, all with names that evoke the color red, and each girl has a Mind Screw encounter with a "wolf".
  • October 11, 2010
    asterselene
    The True Story of the Three Little Pigs is a book supposedly told by "A. Wolf" that has the wolf claiming that he just had a very bad cold (sneezing) and the pigs were refusing to give him sugar to bake his poor granny a cake. Oh, and he ate the pigs after he sneezed because it's like seeing a cheeseburger lying around.
  • October 11, 2010
    RedWren
    Folklore
  • October 12, 2010
    BlackWolfe
    Just as a little clarification, The Big Bad Wolf in Hoodwinked is Chevy Chase as Fletch. Down to the outfit. I'd so Pot Hole Fletch in that example somewhere. Um...

    I'm stumped for examples at the moment.
  • October 23, 2010
    GuesssWho
    The music video for the VAST song Pretty When You Cry has lots of visual references to Little Red Riding Hood.
  • October 23, 2010
    randomsurfer
    A minor character in Into The Woods, I believe he's basically played straight (but I could be wrong - somebody else with more knowledge than I of the play may want to chime in).
  • October 24, 2010
    SomeGuy
    This is definitely distinct from Big Badass Wolf. I'm a little puzzled why we have that and not this.

    • One Looney Tunes short revamped the story as being set in a jazz club where the three little pigs are a hot band. The Big Bad Wolf only resorts to blowing the clubs down when the pigs refuse to let him jam with them. Bizarrely, the wolf actually becomes a fairly competent musician after he dies and ends up jamming with them anyway.
  • October 25, 2010
    Unknown Troper
    World of Warcraft has the Opera event in Karazhan, which sometimes tells the tale of Little Red Riding Hood.
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