Created By: Vouze on December 10, 2013

Manichaean double standard

The good guy kills (or torures) the bad guy : this is good. The bad guy kills (or tortures) the bad guy : this is bad.

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This comes along with the manichaean trope (aka "Black and White Morality"). When the good guy does an action, it is ok because he is the good guy. But when the bad guy does the same action, it is bad.

For exemple, in "Criminal Minds", the serial killer may use psychological manipulation in order to make a guy to kill another : this is bad (the episode with the couples who are hurting each other). But when a profiler uses manipulation other the phone in order to make a bad guy kill the other bad girl, it is ok.

Community Feedback Replies: 7
  • December 10, 2013

    See also Protagonist Centered Morality.
  • December 10, 2013
  • December 10, 2013
    This is indeed Protagonist Centered Morality. Motion To Discard.
  • December 10, 2013
    ^ Seconded.
  • December 10, 2013
    This is also Moral Dissonance
  • December 18, 2013
    This is more than "protagonist-centered morality". This is about good and evil. "Utopia Justifies the Means" or "Well-Intentioned Extremist" but in the good eyes perspective. Anyway this is the point of view of "If You Kill Him, You Will Be Just Like Him". Anyway, is this a trope or a political point of view ? At some point, I don't understand what is a trope or "anything about media" thing.

    In real life, this is "Guantánamo". USA can torture because we are good. USA can kill with drones without war rules because we are good and they are evil. Are you sure we are the good guys or the "white hats" in those stories ?
  • December 18, 2013