Often you can tell the difference between the good guys and the bad guys just by looking at them. Elves
are beautiful, for instance, and usually on the side of good. Orcs
, by comparison, are butt-ugly and frequently written as Always Chaotic Evil
. They are not considered sexy
, and the king of the orcs did not turn ugly over time
or used to be good-looking before he got disfigured in an accident
; no, these orcs have always had faces that only their mothers could love. Perhaps even their mothers took a look at them and thought "Blech, how could such an eyesore have come out of me?!"
It also happens with individuals rather than races. The wicked witch in a fairy tale is not likely to be anybody's first choice for a prom date, for example. And the Big Bad
in a non-fantasy setting may not be such a looker.
This could perhaps be said to carry Unfortunate Implications
about ugly people in Real Life
- Many Batman villains were hit to varying degrees with the ugly stick, and some of them were never lookers to begin with. The Mad Hatter was always homely, Killer Croc was born with a disease that made him look reptilian, and The Penguin was short and had a beak-like nose even as a child.
- You've got Jabba the Hutt in Return of the Jedi, and he has a whole palace full of ugly henchmen!
- In Star Trek Klingons had a sinister appearance right from the beginning, but were turned truly ugly once they began making the movies. It would be quite a while before Worf came along, after which we began to see good (or good-ish) Klingons on a regular basis.
- Name the fantasy setting and this will be true more often than not. Orcs, trolls, goblins, ogres, etc. They're monsters that need to be killed by the much-better-looking heroes! But to name just one race in one setting: draconians in Dragonlance. They're repulsive lizard-men, and they serve Takhisis, Goddess of Evil.
- The Cthulhu Mythos has this guy◊. Sexy, ain't he?
- Medusa, who was born that way in one of the legends of her origin.
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars has had numerous villains who are not at all easy on the eyes. Poggle The Lesser, Riff Tamson, and Osi Sobeck to name a few. Maybe they look attractive to others of their respective races, but not to human viewers. And in the first few episodes of Season Four, the cute Mon Calamari are on the side of the heroes while the tentacle-faced Quarren are on the side of the villains.