Created By: lebrel on February 20, 2012 Last Edited By: lebrel on March 2, 2012

Villain With A Strange Goal

A villain whose ultimate goal is something... quirky.

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Trope
Some villains are driven by a thirst for revenge, a lust for power, a desire for wealth, or the pure fun of being evil. Some villains, however, have decidedly odd motivations. Generally Played for Laughs, although they may be just as scary and destructive as more conventional villains.

Frequently a trait of the Harmless Villain, but Beware the Silly Ones.

Seen It a Million Times, please help!

Examples:

Anime and Manga
  • Brocken Blood: As a Gag Series, this series looooves these. Examples include:
    • A former child actor, trying to take a movie set hostage in exchange for "mandatory hiring of child actors over 60"
    • An otaku using mind-control devices to take power so he could get his favorite TV show (recently cancelled) back on the air
    • A splinter group of the Japanese military consisting of unattractive single guys, trying to stage a coup so as to "eradicate Valentine's Day"
    • and many more.
  • Dragon Ball: The leader of the Red Ribbon Army is trying to find all the dragon balls to be able to wish for anything he wants. It turns out he wants to wish to be taller. His subordinate kills him when he finds out that they aren't planning on taking over the world.

Western Animation
  • Batman: The Animated Series: The Christmas with the Joker episode. The Joker's whole plan for this episode is a setup so he can pie Batman in the face.
  • Futurama: The army of Omicron Persei 8 conquers the Earth, all because a season finale episode of Single Female Lawyer was messed up in broadcast, and Lrrr (ruler of Omicron Persei 8) really wanted to see that episode.
  • Kim Possible: The Bad Boy episode. Ron was turned evil for an episode and his evil goal was the world's supply of "nacos" (nacho/tacos).
  • Phineas and Ferb: Dr. Doofenshmirtz often does this. In one episode he captures a TV executive so he could pitch his idea for a TV series.
  • Mighty Mouse: The New Adventures: Petey Pate: "I want to own all the left shoes in Mouseville!"
Community Feedback Replies: 49
  • February 20, 2012
    captainsandwich
  • February 20, 2012
    abk0100
    • In Dragon Ball, the leader of the Red Ribbon Army is trying to find all the dragon balls to be able to wish for anything he wants. It turns out he wants to wish to be taller. His subordinate kills him when he finds out that they aren't planning on taking over the world.

    Do we really not have this one? I can probably think of more examples.
  • February 20, 2012
    Bisected8
    • An episode of Freakazoid had the villain turn his victims into Clown Zombies to do his bidding. Even Freakazoid pointed out his plan was ridiculous (even by the usual standards of the show).
  • February 20, 2012
    pawsplay
    In Dr. Horrible's Sing-along Blog, to create a better world in which intellect and respect for others is valued. By taking over the world!
  • February 21, 2012
    lebrel
    Hmm. The Dr. Horrible's Sing-along Blog example sounds like Well Intentioned Extremist. The others seem to be villains who have standard end-goals (power, fame, mass destruction for its own sake) but goofy plans for pursuing them.
  • February 21, 2012
    pawsplay
    Well, he is a villain, so he can't be that well-intentioned.
  • February 21, 2012
    KingZeal
    Yes he can. That's the definition of Well Intentioned Extremist.
  • February 21, 2012
    Azkar
  • February 21, 2012
    Madcapunlimited
    Batman: the Animated Series. Christmas with the Joker. The Joker's whole plan is a set up so he can pie Batman in the face.
  • February 21, 2012
    pawsplay
    Well Intentioned Extremist specifically says, "Contrast with Necessarily Evil, where the villain in question has a Heel Realization and recognizes that he deserves punishment (of course, he may always choose to just Ignore That Epiphany)." Dr. Horrible does have a Heel Realization and realizes he deserves punishment, and chooses to Ignore That Epiphany. He has some qualities of the Well Intenioned Extremist, but I Idiocyncratic Villain Motivation, where his motivation is a somewhat-inconsistent version of Well Intentioned Extremist, fits him better. Sure, he may seek to make the world better through evil, but he also has "a Ph D in horribleness," and he quite intentionally attempts to join a supervillain group, despite some reluctance about what's expected. He's really a little more Woobie Destroyer Of Worlds than a well intentioned extremist.
  • February 21, 2012
    pawsplay
    Also, all of the other examples do also fit another defined motivation, it's just that this version is... idiosycnratic, to say the least. writeups.org lists Dr. Horrible's Motivation as "Power Lust for Social Justice." :)
  • February 21, 2012
    abk0100
    The Captain Planet villains are For The Evulz
  • February 21, 2012
    pawsplay
    Revised Dr. Horrible text: In Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog, to create a better world in which intellect and respect for others are valued. And in which he is a feared super-villain. With a really nice girlfriend. He seems to admire altruism and kindness, while viewing himself as a sort of Necessary Evil.
  • February 22, 2012
    lebrel
    ^ OK, now we have Well Intentioned Extremist plus a side dish of I Just Want To Be Badass. I still don't think it fits.
  • February 22, 2012
    pawsplay
    You don't find it a little strange he doesn't just sell the patents on the freeze ray for cash, build himself a really nice car, and woo Penny by helping her with her charitible projects?
  • February 22, 2012
    lebrel
    First of all, that would be Cut Lex Luthor A Check. And regarding this trope, the point is that "wanting to make the world better", "wanting to be a feared supervillain", and "wanting a nice girlfriend" are all very common motivations. This trope is not "villain pursues a normal goal in a strange way", it's "villain pursues a strange goal (usually in a very typically villainous way)".
  • February 22, 2012
    pawsplay
    Then the former child actor thing is not example, since presumably he just wants employment for himself and his peers. Which is quite normal.
  • February 22, 2012
    JobanGrayskull
    Having a nice girlfriend and making the world better are idiosyncratic goals for a villain. Especially a villain who builds freeze rays and desperately wants to join the Evil League of Evil...but still responds to fan mail. Idiosyncrasy is an odd or peculiar habit, eccentricity, or quirk. Dr. Horrible is a beautiful portrait of such a quirky villain, whatever other tropes he may also fit.
  • February 22, 2012
    lebrel
    ^ "Having a nice girlfriend and making the world better are incredibly idiosyncratic goals for a villain. " Then why do we have a big fat page for Well Intentioned Extremist and another for Utopia Justifies The Means?

    Again, this isn't "quirky villain". This is "the ultimate goal that the villain wants to accomplish is strange."
  • February 22, 2012
    lebrel
    You know what, I'm changing the title. How about Villain With A Strange Goal? Boring but straightforward.
  • February 22, 2012
    JobanGrayskull
    ^Point taken on Well Intentioned Extremist and Utopia Justifies The Means. To clarify, those are idiosyncratic goals because they are contradictory. He wants to conquer the world and become a member of the Evil League of Evil, but he also wants to have a normal life and relationship. His quirkiness and the quirkiness of his goals are the same thing. It's semantics, so it doesn't really matter. Just don't include it if you don't think it fits.
  • February 22, 2012
    MetaFour
    • In Futurama, the army of Omicron Persei 8 conquers the Earth, all because a season finale episode of Single Female Lawyer was messed up in broadcast, and Lrrr (ruler of Omicron Persei 8) really wanted to see that episode.
  • February 22, 2012
    pawsplay
  • February 22, 2012
    lebrel
    ^ Has potential, what do people think?
  • February 22, 2012
    LarryD
    • Kim Possible, when Ron was turned evil for an episode(Bad Boy), He wanted the world's supply of nacos.
  • February 22, 2012
    lebrel
    ^ Is that "nachos", or is "nacos" something else?
  • February 22, 2012
    X2X
    It's the combination of nachos and a taco. It's a Perfectly Cromulent Word within the series.
  • February 22, 2012
    lebrel
    ^ Eeeeexcellent. Thanks.
  • February 22, 2012
    Bisected8
    So doesn't the Freakazoid example fit?
  • February 22, 2012
    lebrel
    ^ I've been looking for info on that, I don't watch Freakazoid. If he wants an army to do his bidding, and the Clown Zombies is just his scheme to get said army, that sounds kinda too normal (as a goal). If what he really wants is the Clown Zombies part and the "do his bidding" is secondary, it might fit.
  • February 22, 2012
    Psi001
    This sounds a little like (or may be at least related to) Blue And Orange Morality.
  • February 22, 2012
    lebrel
    ^ I don't quite think so? They still know they're being villainous, they just are after something that's uncommon and/or ideosyncratic.
  • February 22, 2012
    MorganWick
    I would so want this to have an Example As A Thesis if those were still condoned.
  • February 22, 2012
    Otakukun
    Potential Page Quote "Why can't you just want to conquer the world like all the other sickos?" Dr. Tommy Oliver, Power Rangers Dino Thunder

  • February 23, 2012
    pawsplay
    So is this Oddly Specific Villainous Goal or are we including characters whose goals are odd in other ways, too?
  • February 23, 2012
    lebrel
    ^ Not quite getting your question, please rephrase?
  • February 23, 2012
    wesnprogamat
    Dr. Doofenshmirtz in Phineas And Ferb often does this.(Someone who is a diehard fan can tell you Which episodes.) I do remember him making a "Cheese Aging Machine", for the purpose of aging cheese only.
  • February 23, 2012
    LarryD
    ^ And the device designed to knock down trees and make them go "doofensmirtzzzz". Also the device intended to burn is name into the city (the diner waitress could never get his name right). And capturing the TV executive so he could pitch his idea for a TV series.
  • February 23, 2012
    pawsplay
    I withdraw the question. All the examples I can think of are Oddly Specific Villainous Goal by a Well Intentioned Extremist.
  • February 23, 2012
    Otakukun
    and Doof made a universal translator to insult whales
  • February 24, 2012
    JobanGrayskull
    Here's a discussion that looks related (I linked this YKTTW over there too):

    http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/discussion.php?id=9gpaz1vrur8lse9nhuslulby
  • February 24, 2012
    HaggisMcCrablice
    Petey Pate in the John Kricfalusi-produced 1988 Mighty Mouse series. "I want to own all the left shoes in Mouseville!" He also got very upset when people laughed at his very bald head.
  • February 25, 2012
    ZombieAladdin
    Anime And Manga: In Naruto, Deidara wants everybody to appreciate his art, which involves blowing up large amounts of people.

    Video Games: In Sonic Riders, Dr. Eggman nabs all of the Chaos Emeralds (one of the rare instances he succeeds), levitates a hidden ancient city, and manipulates Sonic into destroying its guardian--and receives a carpet for his trouble. It's actually a flying carpet. Either way, Eggman has no use for such a thing and just hands it over to Jet the Hawk, the only one in the room who actually wants it.

    Western Animation:
    • In The Simpsons, a group of Springfield's top chefs conspired to kill Homer in "Guess Who's Coming to Criticize Dinner" out of revenge for having written negative reviews about their food.
    • The villain in the South Park episode "Make Love, Not Warcraft" is a Griefer over World Of Warcraft. The boys gathered their efforts to defeat him--they ultimately succeeded, but the episode portrayed this as totally meaningless (including to the griefer).
    • Another Kim Possible example: Frugal Lucre's first scheme, in the episode with the same name, was to prove that one could be as big a threat as any high profile villain without having to pay the large sums they do. He succeeded--he gave Kim and Ron as much trouble as any other member of their rogues gallery spending less than $100.
  • February 25, 2012
    Psi001
    • Said Simpsons example was provoked by Homer being excessively negative and insulting to everything he reviewed, seemingly just because fellow critics believed he made too many complimentive reviews. This led him to overkill it and trash everything in an over the top manner, despite how obvious he actually enjoyed all it ("mediocre...I didn't say stop!").
    • Zordrak of The Dreamstone wants the title Mac Guffin so that the Land Of Dreams can be vulnerable to his Aggoribles, which he uses to spread nightmares to people as they sleep. However he is willing to use any deadly methods to get his hands on it, and has killed multiple minions (and at least one hero) in the process. One time he actually succeeded in spreading nightmares he considered it an enormous victory.
  • February 25, 2012
    KingZeal
    Okay, we have a Missing Supertrope here.

    What are "normal" villain goals? Because Deidara's motivation (to be appreciated as an artist) is very similar to For Science and They Called Me Mad.

    So here's a list:

  • February 25, 2012
    phantomreader42
    An episode of The Tick Lampshades this. Arthur and the Tick spent the episode both trying to foil Chairface's attempt to build a giant laser and use it to carve his name into the moon, and questioning whether or not such a plot is even technically illegal, as it's just a bit nonsensical and the ownership of advertising rights to the moon isn't very clear. In the end they manage to shut down the laser before the plot is completed, leaving just a few letters burned into the surface of the moon, which remained for the rest of the series.
  • February 27, 2012
    lebrel
    ^^ See the Motivation Index. If an example fits neatly into anything else on that list, I think it doesn't belong here.

    @ Zombie Aladdin: I think "the villain receives something for his efforts, but it's not what he wanted / not enough to make up for the trouble" is something else entirely.
  • March 1, 2012
    chico
    Blofeld holds the world for ransom in On Her Majestys Secret Service for a mere amnesty and recognition of his dubious claim that he is the true Count de Bleauchamp.
  • March 2, 2012
    ZombieAladdin
    All right. I was throwing in some examples, but that's perfectly fine.

    For clarification, Deidara believes that the best art should be quick and fleeting in nature (he calls it "Art of the Single Moment"), which is why his art is exclusively explosive. He started out making ordinary clay sculptures, which people liked, but later learned how to make explosive clay--naturally, people didn't take quite as kindly to him from then on. This caused him to grow bitter and force his art upon other people, whether they like it or not. I think this quote sums him up:
    "Look at those fools. They have no appreciation for art. You have to feel art. And true art... is an EXPLOSION!"

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