* ''Rurouni Kenshin'': The eponymous hero was this during his assassin days for the Ishin Shishi: a vicious assassin who would kill in cold blood if he thought it would bring about a peaceful era. Thanks to a series of tragic events, he eventually has a HeelRealization and becomes TheAtoner. Unfortunately, due to a combination of [[DeathSeeker self-destructive tendencies]], BerserkButton, and [[ShellShockedVeteran trauma]], Kenshin's former "Battousai"-self now manifests as a [[SupernaturalGoldEyes golden-eyed]] SuperpoweredEvilSide when his ThouShaltNotKill vow begins to waver.
* ''Manga/ThePrinceOfTennis''' Rikkaidai tennis team, who will stop at nothing to win. Especially their captain, [[spoiler:Seiichi Yukimura, after he gets better from his illness]].
* The religious branch of the AncientConspiracy "Soldats" in ''Anime/{{Noir}}'' were this way, despite the ironic creation of Soldats due to their persecution 1,000 years ago. Altena, similarly, will stop at nothing to see her ideals realized, for the sake of humanity, no matter how many must die, Les Soldats or otherwise.
* The Vatican's elite [[ChurchMilitant Iscariot]] [[VampireHunter Section]] [[BloodKnight XIII]] in the anime and manga ''Manga/{{Hellsing}}''. Not that the protagonists are [[BlackAndGrayMorality much better]].
** Ironically, this is actually downplayed with Father Alexander Anderson. Yes, he's a bit indiscriminate in his targeting of vampires, as poor Seras has learned the hard way. Otherwise, not so much. And this is proven during Maxwell's Holy Crusade upon Protestant England; instead of backing up the genocidal Maxwell, Anderson is completely disgusted by his bloodlust and the killing of so many innocent Christians and [[spoiler: readily assists Alucard in killing him.]]
** As shown above, Maxwell is even more AxCrazy and fanatical than Anderson, which is truly amazing. Unlike his mentor, Maxwell is willing to kill millions of innocent civilians just to satisfy his own DrunkWithPower ego, and finds an entire army of equally nuts clergy members to help him. It's the main reason why Anderson has to [[spoiler: waste him.]]
** Anderson's protégés, [[BadassNormal Heinkel]] and [[CuteAndPsycho Yumie]], tend to lean towards this as well. However, unlike Maxwell, both they and another large chunk of Iscariot (many of whom were also raised by the [[ParentalSubstitute Scottish priest]]) are directly under Anderson's influence, so they don't take the fanaticism or blood-letting quite so far.
* ''Anime/YuGiOh'' has Dartz and his organization, Doma, which wants to destroy the world in order to save it.
** Yami Yugi was also an intense KnightTemplar in the early manga, driving people insane and directly setting five people on fire in order to protect Yugi. Many of his punishments took place through penalty games, but still, many of them are DisproportionateRetribution. When Yugi becomes fully aware of his presence after Yami Yugi is prepared to kill Kaiba to win, Yami tones WAY down, only approaching his old levels in Season 4 of the anime-only Doma arc when he (temporarily) [[MyGodWhatHaveIDone loses Yugi's soul to the Orichalcos seal he stole and used]].
** ''Anime/YuGiOhGX'' has the Society of Light, headed by a vague alien {{Energy Being|s}} called "The Light of Ruin".
** ''Anime/YuGiOh5Ds'' makes a full set with the Yliaster Trio, [[spoiler:Aporia and Zone]], who have come back from the future where Momentum has destroyed the world for the purpose of saving it. They have the power to erase and rewrite history, slaughtering people behind the scenes without most people being aware of what's happening. Then we have the Ark Cradle, [[spoiler: which has a negative spin, cutting all power to Neo-Domino and coming down to wipe out not only the City, the heart of Momentum, but everything in a radius of 30 miles]]. Paradox himself comes from the same future in TheMovie, with the same beliefs.
* ''Manga/DeathNote'''s main character, Light Yagami, a.k.a. "Kira", is a Knight Templar, [[spoiler: though he's not as severe on punishment as other Death Note users]]. In fact, most of the interesting characters at least border on this; L is willing to torture people (albeit [[spoiler:another Death Note user]]) to capture Kira, Mikami is eager to kill for Justice, Misa for love, and Light himself...This series has an extra-lubricated [[JumpingOffTheSlipperySlope Slippery Slope]].
* The SOLOMON organization in ''Anime/WitchHunterRobin'' has strong ties to the Roman Catholic Church, particularly the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith...better known by its truncated historical title of the Inquisition.
* The Royal Knights organization from the various versions of ''Franchise/{{Digimon}}'' are the incarnations of this trope, following anyone who possesses holy or god-like powers with a sense of unquestioning dogmatic loyalty. Usually, whoever is bossing them around goes nuts, and they end up acting as honorable villains until several of them wise up and turn "true good".
** [[Anime/DigimonFrontier Lucemon]] is a prime example.
** The Hypnos organization in ''Anime/DigimonTamers'' are Knights Templar. They seek to protect the world from dangerous Digimon, but employ ludicrously indiscriminate (and almost never effective) tactics in doing so. They are horrific, genocidal, and downright brutal when it comes to actually dealing with the Digimon. Especially the ones that they [[KickTheDog catch]]...
* The Holy Iron Chain Knights in ''Manga/{{Berserk}}'' are devoted to smiting out all traces of evil. The problem: they include "anyone not following our exact procedures for demon-smiting" under "evil". Because of a prophecy about a Hawk of Light, which they consider the newly-reincarnated BigBad Griffith to be, and a Hawk of Darkness, which they consider AntiHero Guts to be (though it's actually [[spoiler: Griffith as Femto]]), things go downhill in a hurry. Doubly applies to Inquisitor Mozgus, who believes in horrifically torturing people to "expiate their sins". The thing is, the Holy Iron Chain Knights are supposed to be strictly a ceremonial guard consisting of young noblemen whose parents wanted their heirs to have all the prestige of military service with none of the danger. It is their leader, Farnese, who is completely and fanatically dedicated to the cause. She gets better, thankfully.
* The goals of ''Manga/ShamanKing'''s X-Laws are fundamentally good: stop [[BigBad Hao]] from taking control of the world. However, when they start beating up and killing people just because they were allied to, or were about to side with, Hao, they kind of stop looking heroic. Their leader, Jeanne, may seem like a NiceGirl, but is just as much of a Knight Templar as her followers; she is willing to [[ColdBloodedTorture torture to death anyone]] who [[IDidWhatIHadToDo opposes her, believing that it's what she has to do]].
** Ironically, their target, Hao, could be considered this too. He wants to kill all normal humans in the world so that only Shamans remain, since supposedly only good people can see ghosts. He's also completely willing to kill other Shamans who get in his way.
* An example of this played for humour is the [[BokeAndTsukkomiRoutine comedy duo]]/LovelyAngels Love Pheromone in ''Anime/AkahoriGedouHourLovege''. For even the slightest misdemeanor against them (such as calling Aimi [[ACupAngst flat-chested]]), they will destroy anything in the surrounding area with their {{Powered Armor}}s. They have no HeroInsurance whatsoever and are, in fact, seen as villains by nearly everyone. Yet all the while, they claim that "Anything can be done in the name of justice!"
* ''LightNovel/TrinityBlood'' has quite a few bloodthirsty crusaders for justice - notable among them is Brother Petros, [[AuthorityEqualsAsskicking director]] of the [[ChurchMilitant Department of Inquisition]], who can favorably be described as "zealous though unsubtle" and accurately described as a bloody lunatic.
** Petros is really more of a JerkWithAHeartofGold, willing to listen to reason, and outright defies orders from his superior (who is a flatout KnightTemplar) in order to rescue the pope instead of letting him get martyred.
*** An early episode also subverts this when Brother Tres Iqus, GunKata {{Badass}} ''extraordinaire'', declares his intent to kill an innocent child simply because he has been ordered to by his superiors, but runs out of bullets. Moments later, he empties his weapon into an attacker and walks away (revealing that he does not mindlessly follow orders from the "good guys"), which is saying something because Tres ''[[ArtificialHuman is an android]]''.
* Kaname Tosen from ''Manga/{{Bleach}}'', whose devotion to justice leads him to join up with the BigBad. Tosen believes that the perpetrators of injustices must be punished, regardless of circumstances; to paraphrase his own words, mercy and compassion are beautiful things, but they are most certainly not just. He joins [[BigBad Aizen]] to enact his justice on Soul Society's governors for failing to give capital punishment to his friend's murderer, and presumably for all the other bizarre evil things that they've done over the centuries, like manufacturing artificial souls and then arbitrarily committing genocide upon them. When he fought his former lieutenant, he noted that he doesn't actually care about the "justice" he preached as a captain - he simply wanted revenge. In a sense, he was saying that revenge was justice.
** Jin Kariya in the {{Filler}} wants to destroy Soul Society because they created and then abandoned the Bount.
** General Captain Yamamoto is this to some, thought it could easily be argued that he is willing to do evil or cruel acts to keep the universe in balance. [[spoiler: Wandenreich leader Yhwach reveals that the original Gotei 13 were actually a group of bloodthirsty murderers, meaning this may well have been the case before Yamamoto's becoming TheAtoner.]]
* In ''Manga/OnePiece'', since the [[VillainProtagonist heroes are pirates]], many of the Marine officers are Knights Templar, the most notable of whom is probably [[spoiler:Admiral Akainu. The very first thing we see him do is [[KickTheDog blow up a civilian ship]] simply because they ''might'' have one of the scholars the World Government wanted to wipe out aboard. They didn't]].
** Some of the Marines, such as Akainu and Lucci, are downright dogmatic in their devotion to the concept of "absolute justice" and can give the impression of a massive, sprawling organization comprised almost entirely of Knights Templar. This is somewhat tempered by the presence of more reasonable characters like Smoker, Garp or Aokiji.
** And now we've got a slighter version in the Fishman Society. Since the World Government have been heavily invoking HumansAreTheRealMonsters on the fishmen, some of the more extreme segments are ready to wage war on the entire effing world to secure decent treatment of their kin. Suffice it to say that most of said kin realize how batshit insane a solution this is.
* Sensui of ''Manga/YuYuHakusho'' was a particularly brutal Knight Templar before the start of the series, believing that all demons were irredeemably evil and all humans were good, killing all demons indiscriminately. When he was given overwhelming proof that his convictions were wrong, he went [[FreakOut completely]] [[FaceHeelTurn insane]] and tried to overrun the world with demons, [[NietzscheWannabe believing all humans to be corrupt]].
* [[spoiler:Admiral Haruki Kusakabe]] from ''[[Anime/MartianSuccessorNadesico Nadesico]]'' is a particularly evil Knight Templar, especially in the movie, where he crosses the MoralEventHorizon.
--> "There is only ''one'' Justice, and it is obviously on ''my'' side."
** He might be more of a hypocritical, propaganda-loving [[TakeOverTheWorld megalomaniac]], however. His underling Genichiro Tsukiomi, on the other hand, [[spoiler:assassinates his best friend at a peace conference for ''daring'' to negotiate with the evil Earthlings, on Kusakabe's orders. He's become TheAtoner by the time of the movie, however.]]
* Duo and Slur from the ''[[VideoGame/MegaManBattleNetwork RockMan.EXE]]'' saga. Slur, in particular, is another example of a thoroughly evil Knight Templar.
* [[TheOmniscientCouncilOfVagueness SEELE]] in ''Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion'' is perfectly willing to torture young children, [[spoiler:kill everyone in NERV, followed shortly by everybody ''[[TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt in the entire world]]'', horribly, to unite mankind in a "[[UtopiaJustifiesTheMeans perfect]]" state of existence to gain transcendence and evolve humanity to it's next stage]]. At least the [[EldritchAbomination Angels]] weren't so pretentious.
* Suzaku of ''Anime/CodeGeass'' starts out as a WideEyedIdealist and a KnightInShiningArmor. After [[spoiler:Euphemia's death]], he falls into Knight Templar territory when he starts conquering/enslaving other countries for the Emperor in the hopes of gaining control over Japan some day. [[spoiler:Eventually, after a couple of MyGodWhatHaveIDone moments, he gets better - or at least self-aware enough to point his NecessarilyEvil tendencies in the right direction.]]
** Many of the major noble characters in the Holy Britannian Empire are self-righteous. The Emperor believes that what he's planning to do is so righteous that conquering and dehumanising entire countries, [[spoiler:which is the opposite of the ideology he claims]], is justifiable, even though it's only buying him time. [[spoiler:Schneizel, too, believes that world peace is worth murdering somewhere around 10 digits worth of people and then oppressing the remainder for.]] Even ''[[PsychopathicManchild Mao]]'' has his Knight Templar moments, though he doesn't seem to care enough to actually ''be'' a Knight Templar.
* ''Anime/TengenToppaGurrenLagann'''s main antagonists are mostly this trope.
** Some fans view the Anti-Spirals as being thoroughly evil examples of the KnightTemplar, due to their repeated crossings of the MoralEventHorizon. First, they [[MindRape turned]] Lordgenome to their side against his will, making him massacre his own people. Second, they turned [[TheCutie Nia]] into their slave, and then [[ColdBloodedTorture tortured]] her, ripping her apart from the inside. Finally, the reason they tortured her? They were sick of merely oppressing Spiral races, and wanted to KillEmAll. Oh, and in TheMovie, the torture/interrogation scene? It involved Naughty Tentacles.
** [[spoiler:Lordgenome]] claims that he [[spoiler:forced humanity underground and killed all who came to the surface in order to keep the Anti-Spirals away from his planet]].
* ''Manga/JoJosBizarreAdventure'' has Enrico Pucci in its sixth part. Pucci is a somewhat unusual case in that he ''was'' manipulated by a CardCarryingVillain (Dio Brando himself, no less!), but he nonetheless believes that what he does is what God desires - for woe to be removed from humanity. [[spoiler: By accelerating time to the point that the cosmos resets and then repeats itself, he's going to make humanity subconsciously aware of everything that will ever befall them in the future, meaning that they'll never be struck with shock, terror, etc. Instead, they should all be in a state of fatalistic, calm acceptance.]] The villainous part comes from his willingness to manipulate the various prisoners whom he imbues with Stands, and killing the Joestars and anyone else trying to obstruct him as barricades to God's will. [[spoiler: In fact, one could argue that the final confrontation between him and Emporio, and Pucci's plans to make everyone aware of Fate being brought to nothing, is essentially UtopiaJustifiesTheMeans getting completely refuted as unjust and untenable.]]
* When one of these is made King of Hou in ''Anime/TheTwelveKingdoms'', his kingdom apparently starts well, but very soon, [[FromBadToWorse it gets worse]] as [[JadeColoredGlasses his absolute sense of justice and human nature]] poisons his common sense and people are executed by the bazillion under his orders. [[spoiler: That is, until the minor noblemen and government officers get fed up with the bloodbath [[OffWithHisHead and behead him, his wife, and their kirin]] [[KarmicDeath as punishment]].]]
* A large amount of ''Franchise/{{Gundam}}'' antagonists are this. Anavel Gato in ''[[Anime/MobileSuitGundam0083StardustMemory Gundam 0083]]'' fervently believes that Zeon is in the right, and is willing to sabotage a peace treaty between his side and TheFederation. [[NukeEm With nukes.]]
** VillainProtagonist [[spoiler:Flit Asuno]] from ''[[Anime/MobileSuitGundamAge Gundam AGE]]'' is especially worth mentioning with his quest of vengeance against ALL the Unknown Enemies [[spoiler:(Vagan)]] in the name of the [[DarkMessiah Messiah]] for Earth.
* ''Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagica'': Sayaka starts heading this way after she becomes a MagicalGirl, and eventually [[spoiler:[[AndThenJohnWasAZombie becomes the very thing she's fighting against]]]] -- [[spoiler:this is the eventual fate of all magical girls of the series]].
** Thanks to [[spoiler: going back in time several times to try to prevent Madoka from dying and becoming a witch, and watching her friends die and the destruction caused by Walpurgisnacht]], Homura becomes one in order to [[spoiler:prevent Madoka from becoming a witch]].
** Some of the witches are this. Elsa Maria "saves" people by absorbing them into her barrier. Kriemhild Gretchen, [[spoiler: Madoka's witch form in the alternate timelines]], wants to do the same thing to [[KillAllHumans everyone in the world]].
** Then of course you have [[spoiler: The Incubators of whom Kyuubi is part of. Beings who are trying to starve off the heat death of the universe by gathering the energy of despair from the girls that make a contract with them then eventually turn into witches. They honestly believe their doing good for the universe even if it comes at the cost of lives, both from the girls that turn and the human victims who're unaware of them.]]
* ''Buraiden Gai'': the Director of the Human Institute.
* ''Anime/WeddingPeach'': Scarlet/Salvia believed that reforming devils was stupid and kills even the harmless ones. [[spoiler:Subverted as it's discovered that a devil killed her best friend- ''after'' she showed it mercy, [[MyGreatestFailure which totally broke her]]. She mellows out though]].
* ''Manga/BlackButler'': [[spoiler: [[OurAngelsAreDifferent Ash/Angela]] and [[{{Yandere}} Queen Victoria]]]] just want to make England a [[LightIsNotGood brighter]], {{pure|IsNotGood}}r place in Season One.
** [[spoiler: Ash/Angela even gets bonus points for being an utter {{Hypocrite}}, doing things themself that they see as capital offenses in humans.]]
* Danzo from ''Manga/{{Naruto}}'' is one. While he does acknowledge that some of his actions are [[NecessarilyEvil morally reprehensible]], the lengths he is willing to go to, his conviction that only he can save the world, and the fact that he still believes his methods to be fully justified even when they ''cause'' most of the problems in the series, pushes him over the edge from WellIntentionedExtremist into this trope.
* Satyajit Shyamalan from ''[[BirdyTheMighty Birdy the Mighty: Decode]]'' is this, believing that it's his duty as one of the "chosen" to [[spoiler: use an alien super weapon to wipe out all of humanity except the "chosen" few.]] He never once remotely considers that he might not be doing the right thing, or even that he might not succeed, and he ultimately [[spoiler: gets killed by that same super weapon without ever realizing his mistake]].
* The 12th from [[MiraiNikki Mirai Nikki]] is definitely this.
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