Created By: ginsengaddict on May 24, 2011 Last Edited By: ginsengaddict on June 5, 2013
Nuked

Honorable Right Hand Villain

The Dragon is a decent person

Name Space:
Main
Page Type:
Trope
Imagine The Good Chancellor in service of the Big Bad. Pursuant to the TRS discussion on White Dragon, this trope is a villain with a strong moral compass serving in a position as The Dragon.

While the master is likely to engage in villainous antics, this character recognizes the value of administering the iron fist with a soft touch, and is far more prone to not killing needlessly, or at least not wasting resources.

Should he ever take over, there will be reforms. Can be a character who hates himself for being in his position, but that is almost never the case.

Compare Noble Demon.

(Thanks to the Grandfather Clause, titles will have to remain unrelated to dragons in any way.)

Examples:

  • In The Order of the Stick, the Big Bad Xykon is only interested in power. His dragon, Redcloak, is an Anti-Villain who wants nothing more than a better life for his people.
  • Evil Spock in "Mirror, Mirror". He may be evil, but he's still a Vulcan, and therefore bound to act "logically". This makes him somewhat more honourable than his human crewmates.
  • Chronicles of Narnia: In The Last Battle, Puzzle the ass goes along with Shift the ape's scheme to dress him in a lion skin and pretend he is Aslan, but isn't happy about it. He eventually goes over to join the good guys, and Aslan forgives him.

I'll get all the examples from the original YKTTW thread later.
Community Feedback Replies: 37
  • May 25, 2011
    Bisected8
    In The Order Of The Stick, the Big Bad Xykon is only interested in power. His dragon, Redcloak, is an Anti Villain who wants nothing more than a better life for his people.
  • May 25, 2011
    captainpat
    Heh, well you asked for me.

    Darth Vader is most definitely not Anti Villain. He has evil goals and his morals are anything but honorable. The guy tortured his daughter, made her watch the destruction of his home world, chocked one of his officers, and gloated about being the father of son after chopping off his son's hand.

    We're not allowed to say that what Character Alignment a character is, unless it's specifically stated in the work, hence the YMMV. You have the Emperor as Chaotic Evil somebody, yet he's on the Neutral Evil page.

    Also, could you clarify what you mean by there will be reforms because Dragon Ascendant is when The Dragon becomes the Big Bad after the death of the previous Big Bad.

  • May 25, 2011
    nzm1536
    Isn't it Hero Antagonist?
  • May 25, 2011
    ginsengaddict
    Nope.
  • May 25, 2011
    captainpat
    ^ No, a Hero Antagonist is simply a hero that is the opposition to the Main Character.
  • May 25, 2011
    Koveras
    Christopher Armalite and his squad in Scrapped Princess are a goodhearted My Country Right Or Wrong bunch whose superiors turn out to be paranoid jerks. They all go rogue late in the series.
  • May 25, 2011
    ginsengaddict
    I'm not sure that counts - for starters, the squad doesn't seem to fill the role of The Dragon, and My Country Right Or Wrong is not a related trope.
  • May 25, 2011
    ginsengaddict
    ^^^^^ As for some of those reforms? Well, civil liberties, fewer pointless executions, tightened security, taxes lowered to a point where people are no longer starving... you know, heroic stuff.

    Juan Carlos for example.
  • May 25, 2011
    jaytee
    I think that Darth Vader is covered under Heel Face Turn. He's not really a "decent" person until the very end, which shouldn't be enough to fulfill this trope (seeing as how that would just be Heel Face Turn But More Specific).
  • May 25, 2011
    magnum12
    • Harpuia from Mega Man Zero (type IV Anti Villain) compared to Copy X. Honorable, fights for a just cause (despite being blinded by pride to the truth that Maverick is horribly distorted) and is open to potential peaceful resolutions (implied to be the reason for not grabbing Ceil in Zero 3 despite having the opprutunity to win the war right then and there given later dialogue showing that Neo Arcadia knows the Ceil system is nearly finished).
  • May 25, 2011
    jatay3
    Count Fenring is almost this to The Emperor in Dune. As I understand(I never read any volumes but the first) Fenring comes off worse in the prequels.ff mainly as just another scheming nobleman and it is hard to remember that he was complicit in attempted genocide, but the real villain is Baron Harkonen. Be that as it may Count Fenring in the original novel seems to be a fairly nice guy if not exactly a hero. YMMV.

    Damodara and Rana Sanga in Belisarius Series.

    Vir Cotto is this to Londo. Londo is this to the Centauri Republic in Babylon Five.

    In Real Life, several of the brothers of Napoleon Bonaparte come off as this. They were not all that competent really, but they would never have marched on Moscow either. And they seem to have been more amiable in personality. Of course that requires you to assume Boney is an Evil Emperor which is a YMMV.
  • May 25, 2011
    jatay3
    This might be a variation of Worthy Opponent
  • May 25, 2011
    captainpat
    Are we allowed to objectivitly call real people villains?

    You specifically stated in the trope description and the laconic that this character is of a strong moral compass or a decent person. Simply being less evil than the Big Bad isn't gonna cut it.

  • May 25, 2011
    Damr1990
    See Also Noble Demon for other variation of an enemy with a moral code
  • May 27, 2011
    BlueIceTea
    • Evil Spock in "Mirror, Mirror". He may be evil, but he's still a Vulcan, and therefore bound to act "logically". This makes him somewhat more honourable than his human crewmates.
  • May 27, 2011
    ginsengaddict
    ^ Excellent example.
  • May 27, 2011
    valbinooo
    Could simply call it Honorable Dragon or use it as a redirect.

  • May 27, 2011
    ginsengaddict
    ^ This trope had already been launched as White Dragon. The Grandfather Clause is in effect, so any title with "Dragon" in it is reserved for tropes about Dragons, not The Dragon.

    I know, it's confusing.
  • May 28, 2011
    NoirGrimoir
    I feel like something extremely close to this was on the YKTTW before.
  • May 28, 2011
    ginsengaddict
    ^ Yes. White Dragon. That was prematurely launched and sent through the wringer at the TRS, and ultimately the page was cut and the trope was sent back here under this new working title.
  • May 28, 2011
    BlueIceTea
    • Louis from Casablanca? He's hardly honourable, and it's implied that he only changes sides at the end because he senses that the tide has turned against the Nazis. But he does end up as a good guy, and as a Frenchman he can't be completely comfortable working for the Germans.
  • May 28, 2011
    ginsengaddict
    ^ I'm iffy on him. He wasn't really The Dragon to Strasser, more of an unwilling collaborator. His Heel Face Turn in the end was motivated more by a sense of freedom that he hadn't had while Strasser (and by extension, all Nazis) was around to keep him in check.

    Moreover, while he was working for Strasser, he didn't really do much to make the lives of the people of Casablanca any better. He didn't really even seem to care, which is a major aspect of this trope. The Dragon with a Heart Of Gold, so to speak.

    I'll think about it though.
  • May 30, 2011
    BlueIceTea
    • In The Last Battle, Puzzle the ass goes along with Shift the ape's scheme to dress him in a lion skin and pretend he is Aslan, but isn't happy about it. He eventually goes over to join the good guys, and Aslan forgives him.
  • June 6, 2011
    BlueIceTea
  • January 4, 2012
    BlueIceTea
    Bump.
  • January 4, 2012
    Tuomas
    This often overlaps with My Master Right Or Wrong.
  • January 4, 2012
    Diask
    We've already got Noble Top Enforcer.
  • January 5, 2012
    BlueIceTea
    ^ Oh, that looks like exactly the same thing! Except that it doesn't contain this YKTTW's examples.
  • January 5, 2012
    ScanVisor
    General Leo from Final Fantasy VI
  • January 5, 2012
    Psi001
    • CoDragon Sgt Blob of The Dreamstone is a light comical example, while still something of a Drill Sergeant Nasty, has notable Affably Evil moments and has much more respect and concern for his Urpney troops than his own master Zordrak. Played less straight with fellow Co Dragon Urpgor, who, while not without his own sympathetic moments, is a treacherous sociopathic weasel who uses lower Mooks as guinea pigs for his inventions.
    • Bianca is this to the Sorceress in Spyro The Dragon 3: Year Of The Dragon. Despite her attempts to look antagonistic early on, her conflicted attitude towards her actions (stealing baby dragons so they can give magic to her world) and sympathy towards the heroes becomes increasingly blatant. She immediately walks out when her master reveals her plans to use the dragons only to empower herself, by killing them no less.
  • January 6, 2012
    MorganWick
    Noble Top Enforcer: 31 intrawiki, 9 interwiki, and a horrible title. TRS?
  • January 6, 2012
    morenohijazo
    Selvaria and Jaeger are this to Prince Maximillian in Valkyria Chronicles.
  • January 8, 2012
    BlueIceTea
    Is there any difference between this and Noble Top Enforcer? If not, then the examples from this YKTTW should just be added to that page. Unless you think Noble Top Enforcer needs an edit first.

    ^^ I don't understand the comment above. I don't think Noble Top Enforcer is a great name, but I don't know that Honourable Right Hand Villain is any better.
  • January 9, 2012
    razorrozar7
    Would this apply to Rubicante from Final Fantasy IV, or is he just a Noble Demon?
  • January 10, 2012
    Cider
    Noble Top Enforcer...Token Good Teammate...those are enough in that they seem redundant to each other already.
  • January 12, 2012
    ginsengaddict2
    It seems to me that Noble Top Enforcer was created in response to this trope's varied history.

    It started out was White Dragon, went through the TRS due to the stupid Grandfather Clause, came back here as this, disappeared, got a trope made without much fanfare, and now has come back. If you look at how old this YKTTW is, it is likely much older than Noble Top Enforcer.
  • June 5, 2013
    ginsengaddict
    Discarding - We Have This, so there's no need for it anymore.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/discussion.php?id=pkg94gqexiqrrvrvkgesksmd