->''"Necessity knows no law."''
-->-- '''Arnold Schönberg'''

Most characters in fiction, like people in real life, have broad lists of priorities and restrictions that determine their behaviour. We care about what other people think of us, how we will be able to feed ourselves in the future, the well-being of friends and family, our worldly goods, etc. etc. Of course how much we care about any given restriction or priority varies from person to person, but in general, we don't have any one given goal for which we would throw everything else away.

The Unfettered is not one of these people.

This is the character who can commit themselves to a single goal completely, absolutely, and unflinchingly. In pursuit of a goal they have no limits, inhibitions, or fear. Nothing chains them or holds them back (thus the name). You cannot make them flinch or falter. They cannot be intimidated, blackmailed, coerced, or otherwise convinced to back off from achieving their goal. There is no sacrifice they are unwilling to make or principle they are unwilling to compromise. The traits that make a character Unfettered can be summarized as follows:
# '''[[IDidWhatIHadToDo Prioritizes ruthlessly:]]''' In the pursuit of Goal Z, there is no X that Unfettered Bob is not willing to sacrifice, whether X is money, the lives of friends and family, reputation, jobs, whatever. How ambitious the goal is does not matter; the only possible problem Unfettered Bob has with [[AmbitionIsEvil ambition]] is the chance of poor resource allocation. That's to say, he'll only pass up sacrificing X now if he needs X down the line and Goal Z would be equally served by sacrificing Y instead. Unfettered Bob can judge harshly and instantly weigh the costs and value of priorities relative to Goal Z. If he can achieve Goal Z without losing his girlfriend [[AliceAndBob Alice]], that's great, but if the enemies hold her hostage and saving her's not an option, Alice isn't going to get more than maybe an apology and a mental note by Bob to [[RoaringRampageOfRevenge avenge her after Goal Z is completed]]. (Unless Goal Z is [[AlwaysSaveTheGirl "protect Alice at all costs"]], in which case the bad guys could hold the rest of humanity hostage in exchange for Alice and Bob wouldn't give a damn.)
# '''Ignores moral guidelines:''' The Unfettered is not just AboveGoodAndEvil, he's left that behind a while ago. His only code is win, win, win. Does Unfettered Bob have to find a cure for Ebola, AIDS and cancer in order to overthrow the evil empire? Okay, he'll do it, the evil empire's [[CorruptCorporateExecutive pharmaceuticals CEOs]] are going to find themselves running out of business. Wait, now Bob has to [[BurnTheOrphanage burn down an orphanage]] to get at the Emperor? Okay, he'll do that too. Sorry, kids, but [[ItsAllAboutMe Bob's need outweighs your lives]].
# '''Devoid of apprehension or indecision in their actions:''' When Unfettered Bob makes decisions, he makes them ''now'', and doesn't waffle over them. Neither failure, ''nor anything else'', is feared by these characters, since for them regret is irrelevant if not impossible. It's not even a question of [[ImplacableMan not]] [[{{Determinator}} giving]] [[HeroicResolve up]] for these characters; they simply can not look at the world in a way where their goal appears impossible (unless they change their mind and their goal, in which case the new goal is likewise viewed). This doesn't mean Unfettered Bob is hasty, though; an unfettered character is willing to wait years to achieve their goal if that sort of patience is required.
# '''[[TheStoic Lacks emotions, or doesn't let them interfere in decision making:]]''' There are two reactions an unfettered character can have to doing something unsavory, like sacrificing comrades or innocents. They can react with callousness and indifference, showing no real emotion or feeling of loss. Alternatively, they can react with much emotional anguish - ''but this anguish has no effect on how they behave''. Unfettered characters showing this second reaction may cry or be physically sick when in private, or even when publicly making the sacrifice, but that won't slow them down. They do not worry, since anxiety is irrelevant to achieving their goals.
# '''Is devoted to a specific goal, not a set of principles:''' TheFettered is the guy you're looking for if you want someone devoted unflinchingly to a moral code. The Unfettered has a specific goal state in mind. Even when devoted to a broader cause, an unfettered character can boil it down to something very specific and often personal; i.e. the cause of "overthrow the evil empire and make the world a better place" may in the eyes of The Unfettered boil down to [[Anime/CodeGeass "wipe that bastard Emperor off the face of the earth]] [[BestServedCold and send his oppressive imperial government with him"]]. It is not enough for The Unfettered to be devoted to a single person, either; there must be a goal accompanying them (i.e. [[PapaWolf "I want to protect that person at all costs"]], [[PoisonousFriend "I want to achieve that person's goals at all costs"]], [[TrainingFromHell "I want to make that person stronger at all costs"]], etc.) Some Zen-inspired philosophical Unfettered may have the specific goal of "do what you want to do at the moment without hesitation". These characters can be really scary.


But The Unfettered does not have to be all purely unfettered all the time.
* Examples of characters who do not maintain this state indefinitely still count. This is a difficult thing for a writer to achieve in writing a story, or for a character to maintain within it. There are Unfettered who can only keep this up for a limited period of time, and may retire from the heroics to settle back into a life limited by family and career once their goal is achieved. Other characters don't become unfettered until events move them to throw away their chains. Going on TheLastDance may compel a character to remake himself in this way, and crossing of the GodzillaThreshold may similarly force one to pull out all the stops.
* An unfettered is allowed to have multiple goals and still qualify as Unfettered, as long as he can still prioritize ruthlessly between goals. For this reason, Unfettered are rarely devoted to more than one person at a time, since they must be willing to sacrifice others regardless of how much they love or admire them. Somebody who is willing to list his TrueCompanions from most to least important and throw them away without hesitation on that basis is, by definition, a lousy comrade. Somebody who can't do that is, by definition, not Unfettered. It doesn't matter how much else they're willing to throw away; if anything restricts them from completing Goal Number 1, then they don't qualify for the trope.

Unfettered characters can be villains or heroes, though many are often the former. There is potential overlap with the CompleteMonster, for the extremes the Unfettered is willing to go [[MoralEventHorizon can be dangerously close to the line]], but be careful; the Monster is by definition a character that is never sympathetic or admirable. Unfettered characters often have an allure entirely separate from how they are [[BadAss admired]] or [[KickTheDog reviled]] for their moral actions, so an Unfettered Monster must not be a character whose determination you can admire. Rarely are Unfettered characters {{Magnificent Bastard}}s either; the Bastard often has limits, [[EvenEvilHasStandards they're just the right ones]]. Also notable is that while pursuing his goal, the Unfettered has ''no'' GodzillaThreshold; any course of action that will help him achieve his goals is automatically a valid option.

Common characters who are Unfettered: High-functioning {{Sociopath}}s, [[{{Narcissist}} Narcissists]], many {{Determinator}}s, {{Knight Templar}}s, {{Unscrupulous Hero}}es, {{Well Intentioned Extremist}}s, {{Combat Pragmatist}}s (the rules of fair play are fetters), {{BloodKnight}}s, {{Byronic Hero}}es, some examples of {{Yandere}}, {{Poisonous Friend}}s, and {{Trickster}}s. The StrawNihilist occasionally tries for this. Contrast this trope's opposite TheFettered, a character whose self-imposed limits strengthen him. Which of the two an author makes an {{Ubermensch}} fall under tells a lot about the story's tone and philosophy. Also look for the occasional unfettered OldMaster; in RealLife Zen masters, among the practitioners of other philosophical traditions, have been trying to become this sort of character for generations and generations.

----
!!Examples:

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* The [[ChurchMilitant Black Order]] of ''Manga/DGrayMan'' is probably an entire organization of these people. Established with the sole purpose of averting the Apocalypse, no sacrifice is too great, no experiment too hideous, or no line too sacred to cross when it comes to defeating the Millennium Earl. Individuals within the organization do deviate from this goal, but the organization at large has a single-minded purpose.
* [[spoiler:Father]] of ''Manga/FullmetalAlchemist'' is an exceptional case of this. He's probably the only one on this page to literally remove his fetters and [[EmbodimentOfVice give them physical bodies]].
** [[spoiler: Shou. Effing. Tucker.]] He was willing to [[spoiler: experiment on his wife, his daughter, and even himself in [[Anime/FullmetalAlchemist the 2003 anime version]] and turns them into mutated chimeras]] if it meant furthering his research.
** Scar. [[spoiler:He will stop at nothing to find a means to destroy the empire of blue-eyed devils who killed his people. And in a way, he actually succeeds]].
** Kimblee in the 2003 anime version is too misanthropic and sociopathic to know the meaning of 'restraint': By all good fortune he doesn't have a higher goal, but if he wants to do something he will do it without thought for the consequences. His backstory claims be [[MadBomber blew up his own commanding officer and squadmates simply because he wanted to]].
* [[TinMan The Contractors]] in ''DarkerThanBlack'' prioritize their own survival to this level and have absolutely no shame and restraint in doing anything as long as it ensures their long-term survival, although as we eventually learn there are a few exceptions.
* Akagi in ''{{Akagi}}'' will do whatever it takes to win, whether cheating a blind opponent, throwing a friend into a high-stakes game just to see how the opponent reacts or handicapping himself by throwing away a significant fraction of his blood. Even his allies describe him as a monster and a demon.
* Some viewers feel that Lelouch and Suzaku achieve this mentality at the end of ''Anime/CodeGeass''. Lelouch in particular forces another character to back down by ''threatening suicide'', as he'd rather die than not achieve his goals. In general, while he might talk the talk, his [[MoralityChain ties to his]] [[MoralityPet friends (and ''especially'' sister)]] do act as fetters--for most of the series. It's only after [[spoiler:Lelouch loses most of them]] that he's really willing to do ''anything'' for his goals. [[spoiler:At which point he conquers half the world in about an hour]].
** On a more temporary basis, [[CompellingVoice Lelouch's Geass]] turns its victims into this whilst they're under its effects. They'll stop at nothing to fulfil the command given to them, no matter how many of their usual principles (be they self-preservation or not going on genocidal massacres) it violates.
* In ''Manga/DeathNote'', though it's tempting to say Light qualifies, he kills people he would normally consider good (threatening his goal), because they hurt his pride (example: Lind L Tailor). Both L and Light sacrifice many things that seem important to them in pursuit of their goals, such as Light's family and L's privacy and safety, but neither are particularly expressive about what exactly they aim for or value [[IncrediblyLamePun In Light of this]], the series' best candidate for this trope is Misa. [[spoiler:She is willing to kill innocents in order to find her idol, Kira, and give half her life to make herself more useful to him. When she achieves this, she changes her goal to winning Light's affection. It is the threat of his displeasure rather than execution that prevents her from following him continually, she kills for him, she refuses to name him under mild torture, she is willing to help him catch Kira (when she doesn't know he is Kira) and she is pleased when he tricks her long-time companion, Rem, into dying to protect her, freeing him of suspicion.]]
** Mello absolutely qualifies, as he's willing to to anything to accomplish his one unchangeable goal, defeat Near.
*** Near even says in the manga that Mello would rather die than be or live with defeat.
** Also Beyond Birthday in ''Manga/DeathNote'': ''LightNovel/AnotherNote'' has only one goal: "get L's attention" and he will do ''anything'' to further that goal.
* Askeladd and Canute in ''VinlandSaga'' both fit this, though the former appears to be a tad too jaded.
* In ''Manga/{{Bleach}}'', Dordonii Alessandro Del Socacchio admits feeling ashamed at striking at the childlike Nel in order to draw out Ichigo's full strength, but points out that "If your objective is to 'protect my friends' and my objective is to 'defeat you at full strength', then what I am going to aim for is not you, but that one little baby, nothing more."
** Gin Ichimaru is also a candidate of this trope. His main objective for following Aizen was [[spoiler:to avenge what was done to [[MoralityPet Rangiku]] when they were kids. He was relentless in achieving this goal; he killed people and threw away Soul Society's trust, his captaincy, his friendship with Kira, and even his friendship with Rangiku in order to get close enough to Aizen to kill him]].
** On the heroes' side we have [[SociopathicHero Mayuri Kurotsuchi]]. He shows no hesitation in committing atrocities [[ForScience to further his understanding of the soul]]. Unlike Gin he never hid this personality trait, which is likely why he ended up being "resigned".
* By the standards of ''Anime/FullMetalPanicFumoffu'' (but ''not'' the main series, where he's shown as part of a military structure), Sousuke is an example of The Unfettered in that he is utterly unbound by ([[NoSocialSkills and indeed incapable of understanding]]) the fetters, norms and standards of modern society. Instead, he operates on soldier logic. He isn't ''entirely'' there (mostly due to [[KidWithTheLeash Kaname]] and her PaperFanOfDoom), but generally has absolutely no concept of [[FightingDirty 'Fair Play']] and [[DisproportionateRetribution 'Proportionate Response']]. The results are... [[HilarityEnsues Interesting to say the least]].
** One [[ComedicSociopathy interesting example]] is when he holds a knife to the throat of an innocent old lady, threatening her "wellbeing" if Kaname and the others come closer. Kaname defuses it with her PaperFanOfDoom, and proceeds to attack him.
** Later on in the manga/novels [[spoiler:while he is searching the world for Chidori]] he truly does become The Unfettered. [[spoiler: Finding her becomes his purpose in life. All of his decisions come back to how he has to find her.]]
* In ''Manga/{{Naruto}}'', the titular character is an example of one of the [[TheFettered inverse trope]]. By contrast, his main enemies largely fall under this trope.
** At introduction, Gaara was solely driven by his desire to face and kill strong opponents, thus proving his own strength. Naruto was absolutely terrified by this as he couldn't understand how somebody could [[LonersAreFreaks survive the loneliness and grow strong]].
** Orochimaru dedicated his entire being to living forever, performing gruesome experiments on himself and countless victims in pursuit of a perfect host. He sacrificed his four elite bodyguards and most prized subordinate to ensure Sasuke could defect and barely batted an eye.
** Sasuke's FaceHeelTurn was largely driven by his conclusion that [[PowerOfFriendship the strength of his bonds with his comrades]] was so great, that by breaking them he would become even stronger.
** Sasuke's brother, Itachi, should be counted as well. He was willing to murder his friend, his own parents and cause the potential genocide of his entire clan at the whims of [[spoiler: the leaders of Leaf Village]] if it meant [[spoiler: protecting his brother]].
** And most Akatsuki members as well, such as Hidan and Kakuzu. Both don't care who gets in their way as long as it completes their objectives (for Hidan [[ReligionOfEvil its slaughter for his god Jashin]] and for Kakuzu it's profit).
** Tobi. [[spoiler:Or, to be more exact, Obito. Nothing will stop him from achieving his goals, even if it means he has to murder his sensei and his wife, his entire family, and plunge the entire world in a war with them against an army of white Zetsus and Edo Tensei Zombies. The fact that he intends his AssimilationPlot to TakeOverTheWorld to include everyone important to him being alive justifies this in his mind]].
*** By the same token, [[spoiler:Madara. He chose to abandon his clan and his friendship with Hashirama to pursue the AssimilationPlot he later handed down to Obito]].
* In ''Manga/{{Saiyuki}}'', Ukoku Sanzo [[spoiler:aka Nii Jiyeni]] is the Zen philosophical version of this trope: he's come out the other side of NietzscheWannabe and fully embraced his own interpretation of the concept of "hold nothing", which is one of the series' main themes. He's one of the series' most frightening villains as a result.
* Griffith from ''{{Berserk}}'' fits this to a tee; his EstablishingCharacterMoment is [[spoiler: when he sells out his entire band of soldiers to a group of god-like demons in order to become one of them because he'd plateaued while attempting to reach his goal of having his own country]].
** Guts himself qualified when he was WalkingTheEarth alone. When demons tried to put an innocent girl between him and themselves he didn't even blink before cleaving her in half. Since then he has gained another group of TrueCompanions and has softened up considerably.
* Gendo Ikari from ''Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion'' wants to bring about TheEndOftheWorldAsWeKnowIt, both to [[AssimilationPlot merge all human souls into one]] so [[UtopiaJustifiesTheMeans they will be liberated of misunderstandings and suffering]] and to be [[TragicDream reunited with his wife]], whose soul is currently [[AndIMustScream trapped in a mecha.]] To achieve this, he's willing to use his own son and surrogate daughter (Both of which he actually cares about, even if its all but apparent at first) as tools guinea pigs, makes them fight monsters, does his fair share of large-scale scheming and manipulation, and goes even as far as ''offering his body'' to a pair of YanDere scientist whom he found annoying at best to keep them placated and thus useful for his plans. He's generally a very pragmatic person who's not above sacrificing the life of a 14-year old kid for the greater good (or what he sees as such), but will do the dirty work himself if he should be forced to. (For example, pulling ropes amongst some random technicians when there's a blackout.)
* Emiya Kiritsugu from ''LightNovel/FateZero'' - completely unfettered, to the point of seeming more despicable than some of the villains; but he redeems himself upon realising that his driving goal ''is'' unattainable.
* [[DarkActionGirl Roberta]] from the ''Manga/BlackLagoon OVA: Roberta's Blood Trail'' [[RoaringRampageOfRevenge will kill those who killed her master]] then [[MamaBear return to the young master]]. And she's not [[UnstoppableRage particular]] about what it does to her, anyone else, or the long-term consequences. [[AxCrazy Move or die]].
* ''Manga/{{Monster}}'': Johan Liebert kills anyone who gets in his way without any feeling about what he's doing. One character that he's about to execute tells another character, "He doesn't even blink when he kills people."
** Not to mention Inspector Lunge, who follows this trope to a T. He is convinced Tenma is responsible for the deaths and that Johan doesn't exist to where he devotes every waking second of his life to tracking down Tenma and capturing him. Lunge even accepts a divorce from his wife without any second thoughts and made it absolutely clear to her that his investigation always comes first. [[spoiler: Lunge finally encounters Johan himself near the end of the series and does a HeelFaceTurn, at least after his world comes crashing down around him.]]
* Paul von Oberstein from ''LegendOfTheGalacticHeroes''.
-->'''Oberstein:''' The Galactic Empire... no, the Goldenbaum Dynasty must fall.
** And he will do ''anything'' to accomplish it.
* Manga/{{Nausicaa|OfTheValleyOfTheWind}}, when you think about it, spends most of the manga without hesitation making decisions which tear at her heart in pursuit of her goal: To get as few living creatures as possible killed.
* Two examples from {{Trigun}}, [[BigBad Millions Knives]] & [[TheDragon Legato Bluesummers]]. Knives has no reservations about doing anything in his considerable amount of power and influence to [[KillAllHumans wipe out humanity]], while Legato is [[MadLove slavishly devoted to Knives]] and will even [[DeathSeeker kill himself]] to help Knives accomplish his goals.
* Jomy in ''TowardTheTerra'' turns into one after [[spoiler: the destruction of Nazca]]. He leads the Mu to war, gives Tony the okay to [[spoiler: kill surrendering soldiers]] and is ready to abandon [[spoiler: a station full of Mu hostages]]. Many Mu feel disgusted by these actions. Fortunately, he gets better.
* [[spoiler:Yuji Sakai]] from ''LightNovel/ShakuganNoShana'' becomes this after [[spoiler: merging with the Snake of the Festival]]. He will to anything to create a world where Crimson Denizens no longer have to consume humans to survive.
* ''Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagica'': [[DarkMagicalGirl Akemi Homura]] characterises this trope as the ideal state of being for a [[MagicalGirlWarrior magical girl]], due to the nature of their contract. Fittingly enough, she is one herself, being willing to do absolutely anything in order to [[spoiler: save Madoka.]] Just check out this exchange between her and [[AllLovingHero Madoka]] in episode 5:
-->'''Homura:''' [[DealWithTheDevil That contract]] forces you to give up on everything in exchange for a single desire.
-->'''Madoka:''' So you've given up too? You've given up on yourself and the other girls? On everything?
-->'''Homura:''' That's right. [[IDidWhatIHadToDo I won't make excuses]] and say I'll try [[TheAtoner to atone.]] [[TheDeterminator I must continue my fight,]] [[ShootTheDog no matter what sin I must commit to do so.]]
* ''Anime/DragonBallZ'': This is the reason why Kid Buu is considered the most dangerous form of Majin Buu, despite being weaker than his previous form, Super Buu. Fat Buu was persuaded not to kill and destroy anymore [[ObliviouslyEvil since he didn't understand that what he was doing was wrong]], and Super Buu was (barely) reasoned with by appealing to his [[BloodKnight desire to fight strong opponents.]] Kid Buu, however, literally doesn't care about anything beyond destruction, and the first thing he does is destroy the Earth. Then the neighboring planets. Then he set his sights on the afterlife.
* The Major from ''{{Hellsing}}'', his only goal is to wage war, he doesn't care who wins, loses or dies so long as the war is waged.
* Huey Laforet and Claire Stanfield from ''LightNovel/{{Baccano}}''. The only moral question Huey considers dwelling upon is the question of "is this action ForScience?" Claire, on the other hand, is thoroughly convinced that [[AGodAmI he's the king of the world]] and thus just does whatever he damn well wants to at the moment.
** Ironically, Huey himself considers [[LoveFreak Elmer]] to be this. He might actually be right.
-->'''Elmer:''' I'd sell the souls of all humanity to the devil if I thought it'd get us a happy ending.
* Ryo Narushima from {{Shamo}} doesn't just live this trope, he practically ''is'' this trope. There is absolutely nothing he is not willing to do to win a fight and survive. This includes: various acts of sometimes completely unprovoked assault, maiming opponents, calling up a rival on the phone while raping his girlfriend, murdering his own parents with a knife, taking dangerous illegal steroids, and even biting off a man's penis.
* Hanma Yujiro from BakiTheGrappler will go to any lengths to have a good fight. His worst action by far is the sheer [[ButtMonkey hell]] he has put his son through just to have someone even ''potentially'' equal to him. He even states to his son Baki that if he fails to live up to his expectations, he will repeat the whole process with '''''his''''' son.
* [[spoiler:[[OmnicidalManiac Rau Le Creuset]]]] from ''{{Gundam Seed}}''. He'll do anything, even die in the process, to complete his goal of annihilating the human race.
* Heero Yuy from ''GundamWing'' starts off like this in the very beginning of the series, not caring if or how he dies, so long as he can complete his mission but it fades as he begins to give a crap about human life.
* Mikasa from ''Manga/AttackOnTitan''. [[KnightTemplarBigBrother Her]] goal is simple: protect Eren at all costs, from any threat. Be they Titan... or human.
** This is also the motivation of the Survey Corps Commander Erwin Smith. His aim is to defeat the Titans. No sacrifice is too big if it furthers that goal. [[CharacterDevelopment Later on]] in the manga, [[TheChessmaster Armin]] starts coming over to that line of thinking too.
* Lucy, Kurama, Bando, and Director Kakuzawa from ''Manga/ElfenLied''. Lucy has no reservations about doing anything in her considerable amount of power to kill all the humans and replace them with her species. Kurama's goal is to save the human race, even if it involves terminating innocent children and women alike. Bando's goal is to kill Lucy no matter what the cost is. Director Kakuzawa's goal is to wipe out the human race, replace it with the Diclonius, and be worshiped by them as their new "[[AGodAmI God]]".
* Yuno Gasai and Minene Uryu from ''Manga/MiraiNikki''. Yuno's goal is to do ''[[MurderIsTheBestSolution any]][[MurderTheHypotenuse thing]]'' for Yukiteru, even going as far as to [[spoiler: keep the [[GroundhogDayLoop universe in an eternal time loop, forever replaying the Diary game]].]] Minene's goal is even simpler: to destroy religion.
* Aoshi in ''Manga/RurouniKenshin'', for a time. The goal: bring honor to fallen comrades (by defeating Kenshin, naturally). The sacrifices: [[spoiler:working for the omnicidal BigBad, attempted murder of his OldMaster, tossing out all morals, and (would have included) his own life.]] [[DefeatMeansFriendship He got better.]]
* Yuriko Mifune of ''Manga/KotouraSan'' [[LampshadeHanging admits this about herself]]. She's most certainly goal-devoted and takes an unapprehensive approach; however, and thankfully, she's never truly ruthless nor immoral -- just a PluckyGirl who challenges the UntrustingCommunity's FantasticRacism against those with PsychicPowers.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* {{Comicbook/Lucifer}}. Willing to sacrifice billions of souls to achieve his ends, and slaughter his formal allies because they might in the future become a hindrance.
* As the [[Quotes/TheUnfettered quotes page]] demonstrates, Rorschach isn't the only Unfettered character in ''ComicBook/{{Watchmen}}''.
* The fact that SelfDemonstrating/TheJoker is this character is probably what keeps him from being viewed as a CompleteMonster (...sometimes...). Have to admire a comedian who will do anything for the joke.
** This was further expanded on in the alternate continuity {{Joker}} comic (which was told through the viewpoint of one of his new henchmen after his latest escape from Arkham): The Joker hates apologies. He hates the entire concept of apologising. He is thus able to commit to things (and commit things) with far more intensity and far more honesty than most of Gotham's inhabitants.
* Mr. Rictus, the Joker {{expy}} from Creator/MarkMillar's ''ComicBook/{{Wanted}}'', was once a decent man and a devout Christian until a near death experience disfigured him and he found out there was [[CessationOfExistence no afterlife.]] Since then, whenever he wants to [[TheHedonist kill, eat or screw something, he does.]]
* Creator/AlanMoore uses this to explain Hyde's growth and Jekyll's faltering health in ''LeagueOfExtraordinaryGentlemen:'' Hyde was once smaller than Jekyll, but the longer they spent as separate entities, they changed. Jekyll became frail from his lack of passion, while Hyde grew due to his lack of limits. It fits Hyde's personality as well, as he joyfully commits hideous acts that give even the more bloodthirsty of his teammates pause.
** It's also a [[OlderThanTheyThink carryover from the original novel]], where Hyde is described as growing larger and stronger as Jekyll's evil side becomes more developed.
*** It is an interesting take to the concept that in Hyde's own opinion, in separating the animal primal nature from the civilized man, Jekyll has condemned them both. Hyde is unfettered because he has almost no fetters in himself at all and is losing what few still lingers, though he recognise that the process is making him more and more ruthless and risk-taking, and thus it will probably end by prompting his own death in some kind of mindless assault.
* The [[MarvelUniverse Super-Skrull]]. This was made particularly plain in the Annihilation storyline.
* [[ComicBook/{{X-Men}} Sabretooth]] is a [[AxCrazy particularly psychopathic]] version of this trope.
* Franchise/{{Batman}}'s second Robin, Jason Todd considers himself this, since he shed Batman's ThouShaltNotKill rule after returning from the dead and finding his death had stayed unavenged.
* {{Lobo}}. "Once the Main Man puts his mind to it, he can destroy anything."
* ComicBook/LadyShiva is an assassin with an extreme laissez faire view of life. She thinks everyone should be free to do what they want in life. Of course sometimes she wants to kill someone, and they want to live. "This makes life interesting."
* The main plot of {{Transmetropolitan}} can be roughly described as two unfettereds butting heads. Both Spider and The Smiler have very specific ideas about what the world should be like, and no compunctions about doing what is necessary to get it there.
** Any examination of their respective actions only makes the comparison more vivid. They really are both written to be monsters.
*** AlternateCharacterInterpretation; The Smiler is Unfettered, but Spider has a [[TheFettered single guiding rule]] - [[IntrepidReporter The truth, no matter what]]. Is it Spider's fault that people tend to get ahead by being lying, cheating scum? Or that when he pukes the truth all over them, things tend to ''explode violently?'' Smiting Evil Feels Good, after all.
* ''ThePunisher'' has the goal of punishing the guilty at any cost, and while in most depictions of him have him respect a code of sorts (don't hurt innocents or the police, etc.), some writers have made him truly unfettered. In ''The End'' oneshot from [[Comicbook/ThePunisherMAX the MAX imprint]], he [[spoiler:destroys humanity's last chance for survival in a nuclear wasteland rather than show mercy to the men and women who ''made'' the world into that wasteland.]] Even by Unfettered standards, that's chilling. And at the same time, it has a nihilistic nobility to it; [[spoiler:Castle let humanity die out rather than leave it under the control of the people who brought the world to an end. Humanity's epitaph, as written by Frank Castle; "We died at the hands of evil men... ''but we did not let it go unpunished.''"]]
* Herr Starr in ''Comicbook/{{Preacher}}''. It is lampshaded in his StartOfDarkness when the leader of the AncientConspiracy explains that he wants Starr to be TheDragon because he adheres to this trope, alluding to an event when Starr, over a period of five years, systematically hunted down and [[MakeItLookLikeAnAccident covertly killed]] five people who had bullied him and put his eye out. He was ''five years old'' at the time. When he is told to kill a defector currently committed to a mental hospital, Starr blows up the building and kills every single inmate to maximize the number of potential motives for the police to investigate.
* Abigail Brand, leader of SWORD, the space-focused equivalent of ComicBook/{{SHIELD}}. When an ambassador from another planet told her that his world's prophets predicted a mutant would destroy their planet, she let him bring Colossus BackFromTheDead and keep him as a guinea pig for a mutant cure rather than risk an interplanetary war. This kind of attitude does not endear her to the ComicBook/{{X-Men}}, but they end up working together anyway.
** Thrown in her face in the end, as [[spoiler:the prophets were in the service of a WoobieDestroyerOfWorlds who had gone insane from her civilization's obsession with domination through violence,("A world where murder is honor. Where children are nursed on the blood of the weak.") and decided to engineer the {{Mercy Kill}}ling of her entire world.]] She's notably humbled by the revelation that her lack of scruples enabled her to be manipulated to such an extent, which leads her to adopt the X-Men(Beast in particular) as {{Morality Pet}}s.
* {{Thanos}} just wants to be loved by Mistress Death and if he has to destroy the whole universe, so be it.
* The UltimateMarvel version of TheHulk. In every way that Banner represses and limits himself; emotionally, sexually, socially, the Hulk has a complete lack of inhibition or limits. His only goal? Torment Banner. Banner refuses to eat meat. Hulk eats people. Banner doesn't act on his attraction to Betty Ross. Hulk keeps a harem of concubines.
* Shockwave, of Creator/IDWPublishing's [[ComicBook/TransformersRobotsInDisguise various]] ''Franchise/{{Transformers}}'' [[ComicBook/TransformersMoreThanMeetsTheEye titles]], is ''very'' much this. While PragmaticVillainy can be relied upon to keep him somewhat in check, he will do anything from killing his [[TheDragon Dragon]] to test a theory to [[LeaveNoWitnesses slaughtering innocents who might help the heroes unravel his plans]]. It's eventually revealed to be a JustifiedTrope: [[spoiler:he was originally a good-hearted senator whose attempts at fighting injustice prompted his enemies to cut away the emotion and morality centers of his brain.]]
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Fan Fic]]
* The new Chaos gods from ''FanFic/TheOpenDoor'' may be a good example of why, when trying to be The Unfettered, you either go all the way or do not bother at all. Their laws are anarchic and their combat philosophy is decidedly no-holds barred, with them using their BiggerStick to unreservedly [[CurbStompBattle Curb Stomp]] "weaker" universes' militaries, making DemonicPossession part of officer training, training their followers to see driving others to the DespairEventHorizon as a valid way to victory, and using brainwashing on their [=PoWs=] and telling said [=PoWs=] about it. However, because [[EvenEvilHasStandards they have standards and lines they will not cross]], their considerable strategic and tactical considerations and the relatively non-hardcore standards of their training (compared to many outstanding examples of TheSpartanWay at any rate), they fail to achieve the total lack of inhibitions of the truly Unfettered and the moral fluidity that ensues. This results in them appearing quite blackly villainous to some readers.
* Zirah of ''FanFic/TheSacredAndTheProfane''.
* Harry Potter in ''FanFic/TheDarknessSeries''. After he was abandoned by ''everyone'' Harry's one goal becomes "survive the Tri-Wizard Tournament" and he will do that by any means necessary. [[spoiler: After he succeeds with this goal it changes to the new goal of "help Voldemort prepare the Magical World for the Apocalypse."]]
* Harry James Potter-Evans-Verres, of ''FanFic/HarryPotterAndTheMethodsOfRationality'', was toying with the idea of being TheFettered, but after [[spoiler: Hermione dies]] he decides that he will now stop at nothing to win the Second Wizarding War and [[spoiler: create a resurrection spell]].
* The Office of Special Resources and its founder Gideon020 in ''Fanfic/TheUniversiad'', though they try to seek a subtle solution first where possible, if push comes to shove will do pretty much anything to protect and advance the cause of the overall Forum, no matter how murky it looks to others. Gas a slave camp? LeaveNoWitnesses as to the Forum's passing, even if it means [[WouldHurtAChild harming children and adolescents]] or any non-OSR Forumites who shouldn't have been in the way? Use themselves as {{Honey Trap}}s? ''Anything''.
* ''FanFic/LifeAfterHayate'' explains that Belkan Knights do not have rules, they have loyalties. Knights fight in whatever manner and using whatever level of force and brutality they require to win on the battlefield; morality only enters into the equation if they think their liege will disapprove of their tactics. Incapacitating said liege is a license for a Knight to do ''anything'' to ensure the liege's survival.
* Definitely Mercury from [[https://www.fanfiction.net/u/3779251/Ocadioan Ocadioan’s]] A dance of Shadow and Light series. Seriously, the guy’s first goal is to “Bring Galbatorix down by all means necessary”, and he first goes about this by [[spoiler: making a backdoor deal WITH Galbatorix to ensure that if it looks like plan A(the Varden’s attack) is about to fail, he will [[HeelFaceTurn switch sides]], sacrifice every friend and ally that he has gained until then and spend the next few decades serving Galbatorix while he [[NukeEm prepares to nuke the capital to get him]].]]
** In fact, later on, the different monarchs and leaders need to [[GodzillaThreshold exhaust all other options before they are willing to ask that guy for help]], because they know the calamities that ALWAYS follows in his wake.

[[/folder]]

[[folder:Film]]
* In ''Film/FightClub'', Tyler Durden (and eventually [[spoiler:the narrator]]) count.
* The Operative from ''Film/{{Serenity}}''.
** Interestingly played in that Mal defeats the Operative by fettering him: [[spoiler:showing the man the recording from Miranda broke his conviction and put him up against a moral objection he couldn't overcome]].
* Colonel Walter E. Kurtz in ''Film/ApocalypseNow''. He gives a monologue to Captain Williard as to why he admires the Vietnamese enemy. He speaks of how when he was with the US Special Forces he went on numerous humanitarian aid missions to foster good will towards the common people of Vietnam. When things changed for him was when during one of these aid missions the enemy came into the village after they left and massacred everyone, especially disturbing was that they mutilated the arms of the children and threw them into a pile as a trophy mocking the Americans. At first Kurtz was traumatized but given time to think about it he marveled at the genius of tactics like that, the enemy was going to win the war not because they had a superior military but because they were willing to do '''whatever''' it took to win. If America had that much dedication he said as few as 10 divisions could win the war.
* [[StarWars Qui-Gon Jinn]] is the OldMaster kind of unfettered: 'I do what I must.' Without remorse, without regret.
** Not coincidentally, many Star Wars fans consider Qui-Gon to be a good movie example of a Gray Jedi - that is to say, [[GreyAndGrayMorality a Force-user that doesn't necessarily believe in the Light/Dark duality of the Force.]] The fact that he serves the Jedi as opposed to the Sith is inconsequential.
** Palpatine.
** The Sith are always The Unfettered, to contrast the Jedi being TheFettered.
---> "Peace is a Lie, there is only Passion. Through Passion, I gain Strength. Through Strength, I gain Power. Through Power, I gain Victory. Through Victory, My Chains are Broken. The Force shall free me." - The Code of the Sith
* Clyde Shelton in ''LawAbidingCitizen''. After his family is murdered and the D.A. cuts an insanely inadequate deal with the culprit, he becomes singularly focused on the goal of not only getting justice, but bringing down the broken, flawed, and corrupt justice system that he believes failed his family.
* A heroic example is Neo from ''TheMatrix'' series. In becoming [[EnlightenmentSuperpowers The One]], Neo was, effectively, Choice Incarnate, able to do what he wanted in the Matrix. Being the One and being Neo were different things, however. [[spoiler:While the Architect was able to limit the choices of his predecessors]], it was Neo's specific love for Trinity that allowed him to TakeAThirdOption throughout the series and not constrain himself fully to what the Matrix, its machine denizens, or even the humans of Zion wanted or expected him to do--[[spoiler:even at the risk of genocide of the human race if he were to fail]].
* Denzel Washington in ''Film/ManOnFire'' To save one young girl and get revenge for her kidnapping, he kills dozens of people, man woman and child alike. He gives no regard to his own life or that of anyone around him. He tortures and kills anyone who has a connection to the kidnapping and kills anyone who gets in the way, at one point blowing up a whole building, possibly with many innocents inside without any remorse. Also, he [[spoiler:sacrifices himself in a trade for the girl.]] Admittedly, he was already suicidal, but he used his suicidal feelings to strip him of all remaining inhibitions.
** Denzel Washington in ''John Q'' also toys with the trope. He takes over a hospital at gunpoint to get surgery for his child, but in the end he's almost nonviolent about it.
* In ''NoCountryForOldMen'' we have Anton Chigurh, a ruthless and nearly emotionless PsychoForHire, with a set of rules that only he understands.
--> '''Anton Chigurh''': (About to kill a fellow hit man) Let me ask you something. If the rule you followed, brought you to this, [[TheReasonYouSuckSpeech of what use was the rule?]]
* In ''Film/{{Taken}}'' we have the father (who happens to be a CombatPragmatist) to boot) who will go to any length, including torture and shooting his friend's wife, in a frighteningly unhesitating fashion, to get his daughter back.
* ''Film/{{Collateral}}'' gives us [[TomCruise Vincent]], the [[PsychoForHire hired killer]] who's as [[AffablyEvil charming]] as he is [[NietzscheWannabe terrifying]].
* [[NoNameGiven "H"]], an interrogator who specializes in ColdBloodedTorture, in ''Film/{{Unthinkable}}''. After he is set to work on a terrorist who claims to have planted nuclear bombs in several American cities, he at several points tells his handlers that it is important that his subject believe that he "has no limits." As it turns out, he [[MoralEventHorizon really doesn't]].
* Standard in [[ExploitationFilm revenge films]]: ''Film/DeathWish'', ''Film/MadMax'', ''Film/RollingThunder'', ''HighPlainsDrifter'', ''Film/OrcaTheKillerWhale'' (that's right, [[WrongGenreSavvy to us it's]] a ''Film/{{Jaws}}'' ripoff, but the Orca thinks he's in ''Film/{{Irreversible}}'', and his rampage [[HumansAreBastards is justified]]), ''Film/ISpitOnYourGrave'', etc. etc., all feature a protagonist who is singlemindedly bent on revenge to the exclusion of all else. And that "revenge" can be assumed to mean "death", which may be disproportionate to the original offense, ''MassacreAtCentralHigh'' being a notable example. Presumably, they bother to eat because they need to so they can gain revenge, but a character on a RoaringRampageOfRevenge will not often be seen doing any basic daily maintenance activities, much less enjoying themselves at anything. Unless it's [[Literature/VenusInFurs a Jess Franco film]], in which case RuleOfSexy applies, and may even play into the revenge.
* Colonel Jessep from AFewGoodMen. Don't believe it? [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8hGvQtumNAY Just listen to his speech]] and see for yourself.
* Mattie Ross in both versions of ''Film/TrueGrit'', but played harder in the new adaption. Offputting because she's just a teenage girl, but she is utterly obsessed with killing [[DirtyCoward Tom Chaney]].
* The antagonist Kurt Hendricks from ''Film/MissionImpossibleGhostProtocol'' is willing to go to any lengths to ignite a global nuclear war for the sake of "peace". This includes destroying the Kremlin in Russia to make off with the nuclear launch codes and putting the blame on the IMF, kidnapping the family of a nuclear code expert so he would cooperate with their schemes before dying when he was [[YouHaveOutlivedYourUsefulness no longer useful]], and even jumping out of the top floor of a vehicle assembly factory and mortally wounding himself to keep the launch control device from Hunt's hands.
* [[spoiler: Talia al Ghul]] from ''Film/TheDarkKnightRises''. Kill innocent people, die herself, construct a years-long deception and alternate identity to infiltrate Gotham's elite, seduce the man who killed her father, allow her closest friend and protector to die... nothing is beyond her if it means Gotham is ashes in the end.
** To say nothing of The Joker.
* [[spoiler: Sentinel Prime]] in ''Film/TransformersDarkOfTheMoon'' is revealed to be one of these. Over the course of the film and the events preceding it, he [[spoiler: betrays the Autobots who trusted and followed him, makes a pact with Megatron, brutally murders Ironhide, attempts to enslave the human race, murders countless innocent people, and nearly kills Optimus, to whom he had been a mentor and father figure. All of which proves that there was no depth that Sentinel was unwilling to sink to for the sake of restoring Cybertron and returning to a time where he was revered as a god.]]
* Robert Angier in ''Film/ThePrestige'' will do anything to destroy Alfred Borden and expose the secret for his "Transported Man" trick, from [[spoiler:shooting Borden's fingers off, to throwing his fortune at lightning experiments to framing Borden for murder]]. At first, it seems to be retribution for Borden accidentally killing Angier's wife, but it eventually goes way beyond that:
-->'''Olivia (his mistress):''' It won't bring your wife back.
-->'''Angier:''' I don't care about my wife. I care about his secret.
* In ''Film/TheHustler'', Eddie wants to beat Minnesota Fats at pool and be recognized as the best player ever. But the only way he can do that is to become The Unfettered, no matter what he has to sacrifice along the way.
* In ''Film/TheWolverine'', none of Shingen’s evil acts really phase him. Not once does he take a step back and think that maybe, just maybe, trying to [[spoiler:murder your daughter]] is a bit evil.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Literature]]
* Captain Ahab from ''MobyDick'', to the point that this trope is the single most famous aspect of his character.
* Both Howard deVore and Stefan Lehmann in David Wingrove's ''Literature/ChungKuo'' series.
* ''Literature/TheActsOfCaine'' by Matthew Stover demonstrate how the Unfettered make setting right and wrong in your story very difficult. Caine, the protagonist, is a prime example of an Unfettered character (but not his alter ego Hari, interestingly enough). He manages to be both a genocidal murderer and the world's saviour, an amoral cutthroat and a loving father. Stover successfully pulls it off because the morality in his novels is more about how much control you are willing to exercise over events to bring around the right outcome and less about whether death is right or wrong. Other Unfettered characters include [[ActionGirl Talaan]], [[InsufferableGenius T'Passe]], and Tommy to a degree. Ma'elKoth is Unfettered [[spoiler:until the Blind God owns him]]. Berne comes close but loves infamy and [[TheHedonist pleasure (read: rape)]] too much. Raithe manages to be Unfettered for about all of two chapters in ''Blade of Tyshalle''.
* Howard Roark in ''Literature/TheFountainhead'' is willing to do anything to maintain the integrity of the buildings he designs. He goes into poverty rather than design buildings he dislikes, and he even[[spoiler: blows up the Cortlandt housing project while in construction since the owners built it differently than he designed it.]]
* John Galt in ''Literature/AtlasShrugged'' brings about the collapse of an entire society/economic system almost through sheer force of will, as well as [[TooSpicyForYogSogoth breaking his torturer]] the same way!
* Creator/DavidDrake has several Unfettered characters:
** Joachim Steuben of the ''Literature/HammersSlammers'' whose Unfetteredness is dedicated to Alois Hammer's use; and Don "Mad Dog" Slade of the ''Hammer's Slammers'' books and ''Cross the Stars''.
** Tovera, Lady Adele Mundy's aide in Drake's ''Literature/{{RCN}}'' series.
* In Ken Follett's ''The Eye of the Needle'', Lucy Rose, the young wife and mother briefly steps over the line to being unfettered when she shorts out the power to the house by ''shoving her fingers into a light socket.'' When another character asks her why she did it that way later, she replies that [[IDidWhatIHadToDo there was nothing else she could have done]].
** He was asking her why she didn't use a screwdriver or tool to short out the power and she replied that she didn't realize that she could have used something else besides her fingers. The fact that she was willing to use her fingers still makes her The Unfettered, or as he puts it, "a hero".
* [[EndersGame Ender Wiggin]]. At school a gang of bullies, all older and stronger, decide to beat Ender up. Ender immediately decides that he not only wants to win this fight, but all the fights afterward, and goes straight for the [[GroinAttack groin.]] Ender proceeds to knock the kid to the ground and break the boy's nose by ''kicking him in the face'', [[spoiler: killing him]]. He wants to intimidate all present into leaving him alone, and they are convinced by his sheer brutality. ''[[TykeBomb Ender is six years old.]]'' He cries about what he's done as soon as he's out of sight, but he does it again and again whenever he's threatened for the rest of the book. As the description says, Ender takes the fight to a level where his opponents won't follow and destroys them so that there won't be a second fight. At the end of the book, Ender ends up [[spoiler:destroying an entire planet and almost commits genocide]] by following his methods to their logical conclusion (and is even more Unfettered in that fight than usual because [[spoiler:he thinks it's a wargame simulation]]). Overall, Ender is a rare example of an unfettered being who may have morals, but when he has to fight, he fights to win. See the [[Quotes/TheUnfettered quotes page]].
** Which places him squarely in characterization 4 - while he has emotions, and even comes right out and says to his sister, Valentine, that "...in that very moment when I love them... I destroy them. I make it impossible for them to ever hurt me again."
** [[spoiler:It can be argued that the subversion of this trope is actually the core theme of the book; the idea of Ender's Game is that he is unheeded by morals simply because he tackles everything as a game. When he learns that it's not a game, he realizes there is more important things than winning and is horrified. Along these lines, the entire book acts as criticism of unfettered attitudes towards the Cold War.]]
* In the "Eternal Champions" novel by MichaelMoorcock, when Ekrose leads an all out assault upon the Eldren, he becomes this. The narrator even says, in effect "People were scared to be with him, but were glad he was leading the charge."
* [[LordOfTheRings Saruman]], in the days of the War of the Ring, might be seen as this sort of character. He claims allegiance to Sauron, engineers unnatural SuperSoldiers, burns down the forests around his tower, and even when he is defeated goes off to rebuild his power base by conquering the Shire. All this in pursuit of the One Ring...or, when that is lost, power like it.
** And from ''TheSilmarillion'' we have Fëanor and his sons, who swear an oath to get back the Silmarils and kill anyone who "takes or steals or finding keeps a Silmaril." In pursuit of the Silmarils, they repeatedly, manipulate, betray, and/or kill anyone in their way. (And a number of people ''not'' in their way.) Some of the sons are worse than others.
* The Dunyain from the ''PrinceOfNothing'' trilogy. They have one goal, to produce a "self-moving soul" i.e. an entity with true free-will whose actions are unaffected by circumstances. In achieving this goal, all actions are equal. Kellhus, a main character, spends the books manipulating, killing and betraying the people around him without ever once feeling anything for them. After all, they are merely slaves to their environment and would continue to be so were Kellhus part of their environment or not.
* From ''Literature/HonorHarrington'':
** Victor Cachat whenever he enters his Fanatic mode. He's an interesting example in that he apparently can turn it on and off at will, and he's usually pretty picky about just what situation requires it to be on. This allows him to be The Unfettered while maintaining a strong and ''heartfelt'' moral code.
** The titular character's no slouch either. When she has a goal or obligation in mind, that goal ''will'' be achieved, to hell with the odds or anyone that stands in her way.
* [[AxCrazy Carcer Dun]], the villain of the ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'' novel ''Discworld/NightWatch'', in direct contrast to Vimes, the protagonist. Vimes explicitly states that Carcer is what he (Vimes) would be if he were to give in to his violent instincts.
* Creator/DashiellHammett's [[Literature/TheContinentalOp Continental Op]] ''will'' get the crooks he's after, no matter what it takes or how many laws he has to break. He is at one point referred to as a "monster". At his worst, the Op is like an unstoppably tenacious fireman: hose, axe, pack of matches and a can of gas.
* EvilSorcerer Pryrates, from TadWilliams's ''MemorySorrowAndThorn'' trilogy, claims to be a seeker after knowledge -- ''all'' knowledge, no matter how [[TheseAreThingsManWasNotMeantToKnow forbidden]] or [[DangerousForbiddenTechnique dangerous]]; no matter how many people he must [[ColdBloodedTorture torture]] and kill, kingdoms he must destroy, or [[DealWithTheDevil souls he must feed to darkness]]. He sees power as merely a means to this end. He eventually makes himself into the most hated man in Osten Ard, and ends up using the power he was given by the [[BigBad Storm King]] to [[spoiler:attempt to control him, which [[EvilIsNotAToy doesn't turn out so well]]]].
* Brad Elliott from DaleBrown's books absolutely believes in doing the right thing, no matter how many toes he has to step on or laws he has to bend/break. This is at times contrasted with Patrick [=McLanahan=] and his Dreamland comrades who don't always have the stomach to go as far as Brad.
* The Haruchai in Literature/TheChroniclesOfThomasCovenant novels "stake their lives on their abilities, and accept the outcome". At one point in the backstory, a number of them are so moved by the majesty of Revelstone, that they swear allegiance to the Lords, giving up "Sleep, death, and wives". You read that right, their dedication is so intense that it actually harnesses the magic of the world and turns them immortal.
** The Thomas Covenants novels also feature "The Unfettered Ones", individuals who could have been rulers of the novels' setting, but instead chose to devote their lives to studying a subject, and were freed from all responsibilities. (At least one of them is a pure example of this trope - an Unfettered Healer who feels a compulsion to heal any injured person who wanders into her field of vision, despite the fact that this requires her to transfer their wounds to herself.) Her doing this for Covenant's poisoned, leprosy-raddled body [[spoiler: causes her own death]].
* ''Literature/{{Trainspotting}}'' has Simon "Sick Boy" Williamson, the amoral, [[ItsAllAboutMe sociopathic]] con-artist. Chapters narrated from his perspective showcase his disdain for society and his friends, and he has no qualms or regrets about using other people. [[AntiHero Renton]] later says of Sick Boy: "He doesnae care. Because he doesnae care, he cannae be hurt. ''Never''."
* Rashel of the NightWorld series has one goal: kill all vampires. Her single-minded determination is what gives her her ''zanshin'', basically her state of eternal readiness, because her reaction to a vampire is: 1) This is a vampire 2) Kill it as quickly as possible. It takes a bit of a hit when she finds some people who are torturing vampires, possibly because she considers it inhumane, possibly because it violates #2. [[spoiler:Her loss of it marks the culmination of her CharacterDevelopment.]]
* QuantumGravity: This is ''the'' ideal for demons of any stripe. Yes, the closest thing they have to a morality system is pretty much a complete lack of it. [[BlueAndOrangeMorality Don't think about it too hard.]]
** We find out in the second book that Zal has been trying to do this [[spoiler:with his goal to give humans clear sight]]. [[spoiler:This is why he only set up a relationship with bandmates (annoying as can be) and Lila (too underconfident to leave, too strong to be taken).]] It should be noted that this is unthinkable to most elves--literally. The whole [[ConflictingLoyalty "conflicting allegiance"]] bit is their thing.
* ''Literature/TheScavengerTrilogy''--Poldarn is simutaneously a celebration and a condemnation of The Unfetted ideal. He is at his most compelling when he is acting with a pure vision of getting from A to B regardless. But he is undone by it, over and over.
* Roland, The Gunslinger of ''Franchise/TheDarkTower'' starts as one of these. He's even willing to [[spoiler: Let the boy he considered his son die for his quest.]] But as the series goes on, he definitely (re)grows a conscience.
* The appropriately named Wildman in William Nicholson's ''Noble Warriors'' trilogy. He is a well known spiker gang leader (kind of lawless scavengers) who focuses single-mindedly on one goal at a time, to be achieved at any cost and is motivated by logic unfamiliar to your normal human. His VerbalTic is "Heya bravas, do you love me?" [[ExtremeMeleeRevenge God help you if you don't.]]
* Creator/WilliamBlake's ''Proverbs of Hell'' encourage this kind of attitude:
--> The road of excess leads to the palace of wisdom;
--> The tigers of wrath are wiser than the horses of instruction;
--> One law for the lion and ox is oppression.
* Gavin Waylock, "hero" of Creator/JackVance's ''To Live Forever,'' wants to achieve immortality, and lets absolutely nothing deter him. Along the way his actions result in the deaths of his only real friend, countless innocent bystanders, and the near-total collapse of society. And, crucially, he gets away with it.
* The Literature/{{Lensman}} corps is a strict military hierarchy, where everyone is subject to orders from above. The best among them, however, are issued a Release which allows them free rein. These Unattached lensmen can do anything they want, and are not subject to orders or any restraints save those of their own conscience. They wear a plain gray uniform so that their Unattached status is instantly recognizable.
** The good news is, only those with the strongest moral character will ever be issued a Release. The intent is to create a small pool of highly competent SpaceCops who can follow their intuitions unfettered by the need to get permission for their actions.
* All main characters in ''Literature/{{Animorphs}}'', with the possible exception of Tobias, end up playing straight and/or [[DeconstructedTrope deconstructing]] this trope in one way or other:
** Jake was willing to [[spoiler:sacrifice his brother and cousin, and flush thousands of yeerks into the space]] to win the war.
** Marco describes himself as this at the beginning of the series. Later, he will do anything to free his mother [[spoiler:and that could perfectly include killing her]].
** In book nineteen, Cassie nearly gives up all the Animorphs' cover (which would mean losing the war and enslaving all humanity to the Yeerks) just to spare the life of Karen/Aftran. In the final arc she also [[spoiler:gives the morphing cube to the Yeerks]].
** And well, Ax, as all Andalites, will pay all costs to defeat the Yeerks.
** Rachel, finally, [[spoiler:sacrifices her own life]] to win a decisive strategic advantage.
* Martin of ''Literature/TheDresdenFiles'' fits. "Red Court is evil, hence Red Court must be destroyed. What does 'other moral considerations' mean?"
** Harry himself hit this trope in ''Changes''. He was willing to do absolutely anything to [[spoiler:[[PapaWolf rescue his daughter]]. He [[DealWithTheDevil accepts Mab's offer to become the Winter Knight]], and even sacrifices Susan to destroy the Red Court.]] [[MyGodWhatHaveIDone He regretted it afterwards, though.]]
*** To quote: [[spoiler:"Fine, let the world burn. The kid and I will roast marshmallows."]]
* Drem from the novel ''[[EVEOnline EVE: The Burning Life]]''. After his family and everyone he knows is killed in a capsuleer attack, he makes exterminating the capsuleers his only goal in life. The sheer force of his will and determination is terrifying to behold.
* Literature/TheDraka see ''themselves'' as this. Desiring an outcome in Draka society means embracing ''everything'' necessary to achieve that goal.
* Mitch Rapp of the series by VinceFlynn is this to a T. A paranoid (generally [[ProperlyParanoid properly]]) ProfessionalKiller, he ''will'' accomplish the mission he receives, and woe betide anyone on ''any'' side who gets in the way. Attempting to be an ObstructiveBureaucrat usually ends with something broken, at least.
* A defining trait of the Gorn in the StarTrekNovelVerse. Once the Gorn have an objective, nothing comes between them and achieving it. Anything that does is brushed aside, ignored or destroyed.
** In the ''StarTrekNewFrontier'' novel ''Treason'', Selar is pushed into such a state by [[WeAreAsMayflies her son's condition]]. It's a condition Soleta calls "Shal'tiar"; when not even logic works, a Vulcan can default to the most direct path to get what she wants. (And Shal'tiar is an anagram of Tal'Shiar, the ''Romulan'' intelligence force.)
* The Black Tower in ''Literature/TheWheelOfTime'', an organization of [[PersonOfMassDestruction men who can channel]]. It doesn't help that they're all [[WithGreatPowerComesGreatInsanity slowly being driven insane]] by the [[TheAntiGod Dark One's]] Taint on ''Saidin''
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* In ''Series/BreakingBad'', after 50 years of feeling like everyone was stepping over him, [[VillainProtagonist Walter White]] becomes this over the course of the show as his Heisenberg persona takes over more and more. By Season 5, he barely has any limits. From lying, abusing and/or manipulating those closest to him, to poisoning a child and murdering many people, [[ItsAllAboutMe nothing will keep him from getting what he wants.]]
* ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'': and ''Series/{{Angel}}'':
** Angelus, as Angel explains: "There's no guilt, torment, consequences. It's pure... I remember what that was like. Sometimes I miss that clarity." Angelus is the [[SuperPoweredEvilSide evil alter ago]] of vampire Angel when he [[TheSoulless doesn't have a soul]] (a curse caused him to regain his soul). Other vampires are soulless, so never have morality to get in their way.
** Wesley, when things get that bad. He did this (and ''twice'' crossed the GodzillaThreshold) when trying to stop [[TheDragon The Beast]] and clean up the mess. He'll always do what's right. Some other notable instances of this are when he betrays his friends, when he sacrifices his chances with the woman he loves and when he shoots his father dead in cold blood. If Wesley thinks he knows what is needed for the greater good, there is no emotional attachment he won't sacrifice, no anguish he won't suffer, no underhanded method he will not use to achieve it.
* ''Series/BurnNotice'' Michael is this early on in the show and is committed to clearing his name and going back as late as Season 3. It's clear that he didn't allow relationships or morality to hold him back from doing what he saw as his duty.
** Larry, Michael's PsychoForHire EvilMentor. There are no depths he will not plumb and no amount of people he won't kill to get his way.
* Fittingly enough, TheFettered [[Series/DoctorWho Doctor's]] greatest enemies, [[AbsoluteXenophobe the Daleks]], are this. Having absolutely no pity or conscience, they are willing to commit any kind of atrocity and use any devious trick to ensure their place as the Supreme Rulers of the universe. This extends to their creator Davros as well, who ''killed off his own race'' when they opposed him creating the Daleks and made a bomb that would [[OmnicidalManiac destroy all of reality just so his creations would be the only dominant lifeform left]], all out of his belief that the only way any one species can be truly secure is by subjugating any and all competition.
** TheMaster, being the complete opposite of the Doctor in many ways, fits the role of The Unfettered perfectly. Where the Doctor will not deviate from his morals and values for any reason, The Master will not let morals or values or anything deviate him from achieving his goals (usually universal domination).
** [[PresidentEvil Rassilon]], the founder of the Time Lords. He is single-mindedly devoted to his continued survival as well as that of the Time Lords, to the point where he is willing to destroy not only the universe but ''time itself'', so that they can defeat the Daleks, end the Time War, and become ''Gods''.
--> '''Rassilon''': ''I will'' '''NOT''' ''die!''
*** In the ExpandedUniverse he imprisons a race in another Universe to prevent them threatening the Time Lords.
** During "The Waters of Mars", the normally fettered Doctor jumps off the deep-end and briefly becomes this... and it is ''[[NightmareFuel terrifying]]''.
** The Doctor sums up why he is not The Unfettered in "A Good Man Goes to War".
--> '''Madame Kovarian:''' The anger of a good man is not a problem. Good men have too many rules.
--> '''The Doctor:''' Good men don't need rules. Today is not the day to find out why I have so many.
** The Valeyard, the evil possible future version of the Doctor from beyond his 12th incarnation, is implied to be this. Whatever he is, he terrified the Master so much that he helped the Doctor merely to be able to continue living in a universe that didn't contain the Valeyard.
** The 40th anniversary [[AudioPlay/BigFinishDoctorWho Who audio story]] "Zagreus" shows what happens when the TARDIS finally gets angry with the Doctor after anti-time infects her. She [[spoiler:tries to kill his companion Charley Pollard and joins Rassilon]].
* [[Creator/JeffreyCombs Weyoun]] of ''Series/StarTrekDeepSpaceNine'' most definitely qualifies for his often frightening devotion to the Founders and their cause. He would do ANYTHING for them... the only 'right' or 'wrong' that exists for this character is whether or not something will serve the Founders.
** Similarly, any occasion where [[EmotionalEmotionlessPerson Data]] has his morality overridden by a program or protocol, of which there are apparently several hidden in his head. One episode deals with him almost getting a young boy killed because a homing beacon was activated, forcing him to go to a certain location ''right at that moment'', when they really needed to be going in the opposite direction in order to reach a starbase medical facility.
*** Paradoxically, Data can also become this when something trips his morality protocols to override everything else, as happened in ''Film/StarTrekInsurrection''.
* Emile Danko in ''Series/{{Heroes}}'', utterly dedicated to removing the [[BewareTheSuperman threat]] of superpowered humans.
* Alpha in ''Series/{{Dollhouse}}''.
* Damon Salvatore from ''TheVampireDiaries''.
* Scorpius from ''Series/{{Farscape}}'' will do ''anything'' for those damn Wormholes.
** Mostly because he'll do ''anything'' to defeat the Scarrans.
* [[Series/StargateUniverse Dr. Nicholas Rush]]. He at least claims to care about things like [[spoiler:Senator Armstrong [[HeroicSacrifice sacrificing himself]] to save everyone else]], but he doesn't let it distract him from doing his job.
** However, as later episodes have shown, Rush is pretty distracted by his dead wife.
** There's also the possible interpretation that he realizes that his attempts to be the Unfettered cause even more restrictions on his actions by the rest of the crew, and that the only way for him to get what he really wants is to accept minor restrictions and work with the rest of the crew.
* Admiral Cain from ''Series/{{Battlestar Galactica|Reimagined}}'' is a frakkin' Razor.
* Chuck Bass of ''GossipGirl'', sometimes. For most seasons his only goal is to sleep with/destroy Blair. He even describes himself as not having anything to lose.
* [[MamaBear Lois]] from ''MalcolmInTheMiddle'' will do anything to make sure the ones she loves will not be hurt, even if they grow to hate her.
** In a rare case of ruthless prioritizing even among her own family, she on one occaision flatly explains that she'd abandon Malcolm to save Reese - her reasoning being that since Malcolm is a natural genius, he'd do fine without Lois' help, while Reese would be completely screwed without Lois' protection.
* Barney from ''Series/HowIMetYourMother'' gets like this whenever he accepts a challenge (he's usually the one ''issuing'' the challenge, too). He once kept his hand raised into the air for hours on end because he said he wouldn't lower it 'til someone gave him a fist bump. He has, on more than one occasion, sabotaged his best friend's love life in order to win a bet. And one time he slept with a 90-year-old woman just to prove he could get laid while wearing overalls. If Barney Stinson says "Challenge accepted!" he does not back down until it's done, no matter what pain or humiliation he has to endure or who he has to screw over (though, often, he considers screwing someone else over a side-benefit).
-->'''Ted:''' He'll do anything to win a bet. Remember that time he bet me that Men At Work sang "Hungry Like The Wolf"? And, when he found out they didn't, he tried to hire them to?
* ''{{Frasier}}'': Bebe Glazer. She will do anything to see Frasier's career thrive. Risk falling off a window ledge, kill a crane via a jawbreaker, manipulate Frasier and any one else, she'll do it. Only when Bebe has to quit smoking does she temporarily stop being unfettered.
-->'''Bebe:''' That's it, is it? I'm not virtuous enough for you, not noble. Fine, quit! Next time you need a deal made, call the Dalai Lama. A long time ago, I had to make a choice between being a good agent and a good person, because trust me, you can't be both! So forgive me if I don't have time to make everybody warm and fuzzy. I am just too busy spending every waking minute pouring any drink, pulling any shameless tricks I can to make my clients' dreams come true! '''I AM A STARMAKER!'''
* Malcolm Tucker of ''Series/TheThickOfIt'' keeps his Party in power by any means necessary: blackmail, physical threats and violence are all in his arsenal. Total lack of scruples is a job requirement, with his more idealistic opposite number, Stewart Pearson, playing just as dirty as him.
* Lynda Day from ''PressGang'': the only thing she will not do for the betterment of the ''Junior Gazette'' is fold to blackmail, and even the suicide of the blackmailer can only throw her off her game for an episode and a half. You don't want to know how low she'll stoop to keep her friends on her paper - and most people will probably never find out what she'll do out of sight of the rest of the world to help someone she really doesn't like or trust that much save a little girl who's being abused by her father.
* According to actress Khandi Alexander, Maya Pope of ''Series/{{Scandal}}'' has become this after being locked up for 22 years by her own husband, Eli Pope. And she was a [[spoiler: freelance terrorist who married Eli just for his secrets]] *before* that.
* Deconstructed with Jim Moriarty from ''Series/{{Sherlock}}''. Having absolutely no empathy and no limits, his one and only concern is to try and stave off his endless boredom, even if that means putting his own plans and well-being at risk to do it. Best illustrated in ''[[Recap/SherlockS02E03TheReichenbachFall The Reichenbach Fall]]'' when Moriarty [[spoiler:[[ThanatosGambit shoots himself in the head]]]] just to "win" his game with Sherlock.
* Cesare [[Series/TheBorgias Borgia]] wants to go from SinisterMinister to prince of state. [[MagnificentBastard He]] [[TheSociopath won't]] [[LackofEmpathy let]] anything or [[CainAndAbel anyone]] get in the way of his goal.
* ''Series/KnightRider'' has another example in the prototype KARR, who was programmed with self-preservation as his primary purpose...at the expense of a mission, innocent civilians, or his driver. None of it mattered so long as KARR himself survived.
* Shane Walsh of ''Series/TheWalkingDead'' has the admirable objective of keeping the group alive, but is utterly ruthless in his attempts to do so. Later, he acquires the additional, not-so-admirable goal of taking Lori and Carl from Rick.
* ''Series/{{Supernatural}}'': Sam after he [[CameBackWrong comes back]] in season 6 [[SoullessShell soulless]]. He was still dedicated to hunting but he didn't care about saving people (he flat out says he doesn't care about anything) and [[ShootTheDog became utterly ruthless]], prioritizing completing the job over everything. He used [[LivingEmotionalCrutch his brother]] as vampire bait at one point, letting Dean get turned to infiltrate their nest.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Music]]
* "Divide" by Music/{{Disturbed}}:
--> ''You might say that I'm the last man standing now, / Though you'll try, you'll never find a way to break me / You might say that I'm sick of being lost in the crowd, / I hear the sirens but they're never gonna take me / I am a little more provocative then you might be, / It's your shock and then your horror on which I feed / So can you tell me what exactly does freedom mean, / If I'm not free to be as twisted as I wanna be / Don't wanna be another player losing in this game / I'm trying to impress upon you / We're not the same / My psychotic mentality is so unique / I'm one aggressive motherf** ker / Now, wouldn't you say?''
* [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iVxrPt1nFOA&feature=fvwrel "Any Means Necessary"]] by Hammerfall
* "Scorched Earth" by Music/{{Van der Graaf Generator}}
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Myth And Legend]]
* A number of characters from myth are Unfettered. The Cree trickster Weesageechak and the Anishnaabe trickster Nanabozho could qualify, as well as the infamous Coyote. Reynard the Fox and Tijl Eulenspiegel (Uylenspiegel in Belgian lore) might fit into this trope too. They know perfectly well how society works and the risks they incur, but most of the time they ''[[RebelliousSpirit simply don't care]]''.

[[/folder]]

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* The "Conviction" virtue in ''{{Exalted}}'' is a measure of how easily a character can endure hardship or inflict suffering upon others. It allows the character to endure adversity and take draconian measures in order to achieve important goals, as well as make choices when all options are horrific. It goes without saying that many high-Conviction characters qualify for being Unfettered, though the virtue flaws associated with Conviction tend to make such characters cruel and unfeeling as hell.
** The Exalted wiki's fan-made errata introduced a couple of new ones, such as simply developing a bad case of [[ApathyKilledTheCat apathy]] when you're worn down and fed up.
** Alchemicals have an even better example in their Clarity stat; by the time it reaches 10, you are literally incapable of retaining any sort of real feeling for anyone who is not directly useful for your goals or motivations.
** This is also how Adorjan sees herself - truly free, free of attachments, free of despair, free of guilt. [[spoiler:Actually, she's got an epic-scale case of PTSD - she's just as chained as the other Yozis, but she dedicates a lot of effort to convincing herself she doesn't care.]] She Who Lives In Her Name, thanks to Cosmic Transcendence of (Virtue), is a straighter example - those with Cosmic Transcendence of Compassion are ruthlessly utilitarian in their pursuit of a better world and tend to resemble the Operative from ''Film/{{Serenity}}''.
* ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}'' has several Unfettered factions. The [[SkeleBot Necrons]] and [[HordeOfAlienLocusts Tyranids]] are motivated by mechanical logic and instinctive hunger respectively, while the [[UltimateEvil Chaos Gods]] are single-minded in their dedication to mindless violence, scheming to enact change, sensation, and spreading disease. Even the [[TheEmpire Imperium]] is utterly ruthless when it comes to ensuring the survival of Man over the survival of men, and justifies its draconian actions as being necessary in the face of the aforementioned threats.
** The entirety of Orkish civilization concerns preparing for and waging WAAAGH! on everything in the galaxy, including other Orks, and their total devotion to warfare would probably be deemed insane by most other factions. In the Literature/CiaphasCain novel ''Death or Glory'', a Warboss ambushes an Imperial fleet by taking all his [[PsychicPowers Weirdboyz]], placing them on a ship in [[HyperspaceIsAScaryPlace the Warp]], and using the corresponding boost in energy to fry the navigators of the human fleet and drag it into realspace prematurely. This had the side effect of killing all the Weirdboyz, but not only is this a moot point to the Warboss, if he'd had more greenskin psykers, he'd have tried the strategy as often as possible - and the Weirdboyz ''willingly'' went along with this, because Orks will do anything for an edge.
** This is what makes renegade Space Marines so dangerous. The Adeptus Astartes are given phenomenal physical power, state-of-the-art wargear, and trained to be the ultimate defenders of humanity. The price for this is an extended lifetime of self-denial and selfless service, comprised only of prayer, preparation and battle. When such a superhuman warrior renounces his ascetic vows and decides to indulge his own long-suppressed desires, the results are terrifying. Graham [=McNeill=] describes Warsmith Honsou of the IronWarriors as being able to do anything he likes because he has precisely no concern for the consequences of his actions beyond his own survival and ability to continue his campaign of vengeance against [[Literature/{{Ultramarines}} Uriel]] [[ArchEnemy Ventris]].
** Though they've mellowed out somewhat in the intervening ten thousand years, during the HorusHeresy the Space Wolves (or more properly, the ''Vlka Fenryka'') served this role in the SpaceMarine Legions. You called the Ultramarines or Luna Wolves when you wanted a technically perfect victory that spared as much infrastructure as possible. You called the Iron Warriors or Imperial Fists when you wanted something besieged. You called the Rout when you wanted something ''dead'' and weren't particularly worried about things like collateral damage or war crimes. This scared their allies so much that many Imperial forces preferred to die en masse than call upon the Space Wolves.
--->"So the Rout are capable of cannibalism?"\\
"We are capable of anything. That is the point of us."
* When the KarmaMeter of a MadScientist [[MoralEventHorizon hits zero]] in ''TabletopGame/GeniusTheTransgression'', they become Illuminated. They have no boundaries or limits as to what they are willing and capable of doing... but the term is all but synonymous with CompleteMonster and there's a [[HumanResources perfectly]] [[PoweredByAForsakenChild good]] [[AxCrazy reason]] [[AGodAmI for that]].
** It's mentioned that illumination through losing all sense of [[KarmaMeter Obligation]] is, in fact, the least likely way to become illuminated. Focusing too much on Inspiration, or unmada letting their [[MadScientist madness]] overwhelm them are both far more likely sources of Illumination. Which means that [[ScienceHero paragon of justice and humanity]] that got just a little too obsessed with their new project [[ParanoiaFuel could easily have become illuminated.]] And he won't change much at all on the outside... until one day you find he's permanently grafted his body into his military-grade PowerArmor and has decided to become [[HeWhoFightsMonsters "justice incarnate".]]
* Lord Commander Coleman Stryker hits the Unfettered state later in [[IronKingdoms Warmachine's]] plot. As the wars that engulfed the land ground into full gear, he realized that he could no longer protect his beloved homeland with just courage, honor, and fancy weaponry. He then proceeds to persecute Menites, steal prototype armor from his mentor, and pardon inquisitors (one of the major reasons why the previous king was forcibly overthrown) to do fulfill his duties.
** Unlike most he quickly relized what he was doing, and is now walking the fine line between this and TheFettered
* Once upon a time, there were [[VampireTheRequiem the strix]]. The strix allegedly created the Julii clan by restoring Remus (yes, that one) to undeath. When the Julii broke the deal, the strix made it their mission to ensure the Julii and Rome's vampiric government fell. And they succeeded. Now, in modern nights, they are ''completely aimless'' -- which is a problem, because they can [[DemonicPossession possess people]], and [[SenseFreak will desperately throw themselves into]] ''[[SenseFreak anything]]'' [[SenseFreak to avoid the fact that they're basically purposeless]].
* The Avatar of Freedom epic destiny in 4th Edition DungeonsAndDragons has an ability called 'Unfettered Stride', which makes that character all but impossible to slow down or stop. Characters who can take this destiny can be Unaligned, and thus possibly true examples of The Unfettered.
** It's entirely possible to play this trope fairly straight as a PC in D&D, though your alignment will inevitably swing toward Chaotic Neutral, and the rest of the party may suffer a bit. If you have a paladin in the party, don't expect to get along at all.
** Inevitables, constructs from Mechanus programmed to punish a specific infraction of natural law, focus totally on apprehending their quarry and are totally willing to sacrifice allies if it aids their mission. Notably, they combine both this and TheFettered: The one law they enforce is everything to them, and they ''will'' respect it. But ''nothing'' will get in the way of enforcing it, and they'll do anything they need to in order to punish infractors.
* ''TabletopGame/{{Paranoia}}'': High-ranking Illuminati. Many High Programmers. Sufficiently ruthless [=PCs=].
** Members of PURGE. Bots that have gone frankenstein. The scenery.
*** If you're playing Paranoia and think that Bouncy Bubble Beverage cannot possibly be Unfettered, you're either new to the game or your GM is Doing It Wrong.
* Each of the colors from MagicTheGathering, each representing their respective states of mind in the total absence of opposite factors. White's adherence to morality ironically causes it to be [[LightIsNotGood horribly tyrannical]] on many occasions, caring more for the community than the individuals in it; Blue does absolutely anything in the name of science (helps that it is the colour that is least affected by emotion); Black is unfettered in its willingness to give everything in the pursuit of ultimate power; Red is emotional and individualistic and refuses to let anything stop it from feeling any feeling it wants and acting any way it wants; and Green is driven by instinct and doesn't think of structure.
** In the storyline, there's Urza, a WellIntentionedExtremist planeswalker and NominalHero. There are a few times where he comes close to crossing the MoralEventHorizon--over the course of the storyline, he creates entire {{Slave Race}}s of soldiers through eugenics, destroys major landmasses (in one case starting an entire ice age), and in one case hires a psychopath to his party so that he'll have someone to drain the soul of when he inevitably betrays the team - but doesn't by sheer virtue of the fact that all of his deeds are for the purpose of killing Yawgmoth. [[spoiler:Which makes him seem like a total hypocrite when he ''sides with Phyrexia'' after he realizes that Phyrexia is basically everything he ever wanted out of life.]]
** Yawgmoth himself was willing to do virtually anything - wage war on his own civilization, graphically experiment on or torture anyone in his path, and come within an inch of dooming the entire multiverse - solely to prove that his way was the best.
* The [[EnfantTerrible fetchspawn]] of ChangelingTheLost are Unfettered both metaphorically (having no concept of or interest in remorse and morality) and literally (locked doors open for them, chains fall off of them).
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Theatre]]
* Siegfried in his own opera by [[Creator/RichardWagner Wagner]]; he gets angsty in ''Gotterdammerung''.
* The title character of ''Theatre/SweeneyToddTheDemonBarberOfFleetStreet'' is willing to do anything to get his revenge on the Judge. He is a rather villainous (if still sympathetic) example, as he takes pleasure in "practic[ing] on less honorable throats" in the meantime. And has the bodies [[ImAHumanitarian cooked into pies]].
* Procida in ''Theatre/IVespriSiciliani''. He says he'd sacrifice anything, even his honor, to liberate Sicily and indeed, his methods are often less than honorable.
[[/folder]]


[[folder:Video Games]]
* ''Videogame/FalloutNewVegas'' has Father Elijah, the insane former leader of the Mojave Brotherhood of Steel chapter. Following a disastrous military defeat that saw the chapter driven into exile and terminal decline, Elijah sets out to unearth [[AppliedPhlebotinum lost pre-war technologies]] he can use to bring about the Brotherhood's revival, alongside [[spoiler: massacring the competitors who brought about their downfall in the first place.]] His pursuit of these technologies lead him to first begin fitting people with explosive collars to make them do his bidding, [[YouHaveOutlivedYourUsefulness whom he kills once their use runs out]], and finally to [[spoiler:Attempt genocide.]]
* The Renegade option in the ''Franchise/MassEffect'' series, particularly ''VideoGame/MassEffect2'' (when it doesn't involve just being a dick to random shopkeepers).
** [[TheChessmaster The Illusive Man]] is willing to do anything if it will give Cerberus -- and by extension, humanity -- an advantage over the alien races and the Reapers.
** The same goes for Aria, the crime boss of [[WretchedHive Omega]]. She knows who Shepard is but still cooperates when they both want the same people gone. When talking to her how her jobs can be done, she really doesn't care. Just do anything it takes to get the result.
** Javik in the third game, as the avatar of vengeance, literally has no other purpose to live, other than to stop the Reapers. Throughout the game, he advises Shepard that nothing other than stopping the Reapers matters, and states as bluntly as possible to ignore, subjugate or destroy whoever is unwilling to help the war effort. For him, nothing is too precious to sacrifice against the unfeeling, eternal threat of synthetics.
** According to the video archives of the Citadel DLC of the third game, the first Spectre was a Salarian operative who used 30 civilians as bait to flush out a target of his. Evidently this attitude impressed the Council enough to give him a job.
* In ''PlanescapeTorment'', the Practical Incarnation is this. He can and will do ''anything'' to find out the truth about himself and his own power. This effect is either slightly lessened when you realize his willingness to sacrifice his own life is due to his quasi-immortality, or slightly increased when you realize he will die to achieve his goals ''[[MyDeathIsJustTheBeginning and even that won't stop him]]''.
* Havik from ''MortalKombat''. Casting off primitive ideas like "measure" and "focus" gave him a real sense of measure and focus towards destroying the ideas of measure and focus.
** Although it is part of Havik's BackStory that he was once TheFettered himself, utterly dedicated to order and peace; It took years for the priests of chaos to break his spirit, but once he freed himself from the shackles of reason and temperance he never looked back.
* [[spoiler:Mithos Yggdrassil]], the BigBad of ''VideoGame/TalesOfSymphonia''.
* ''VideoGame/{{Prototype}}'': Alex Mercer is a wild example of an Unfettered ''that gets Fettered''. He starts out totally without rules, only with hunger and hate... and slowly picks up Fetters. Doing so makes him much, ''much'' stronger.
** [[TheEvilArmy Blackwatch]], on the other hand, never ''had'' any fetters.
* In ''VideoGame/DevilSurvivor'' this fits the PC of the [[spoiler:Chaos]] [[MultipleEndings ending]] to a tee: if [[spoiler:[[ThereCanBeOnlyOne fighting]] to take the power of [[SealedEvilInACan a superbeing stuck in a tower]] so you can start a war ''[[DidYouJustPunchOutCthulhu to kill]] {{God}}'' because you think [[GodIsEvil he's being a bastard]] (which is mostly just his subordinates) for holding his SecretTestOfCharacter]] isn't throwing out all ideas of restraint, I don't know what is.
** The idea goes far more into the past of the franchise, with the Gaians of ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiI'' and ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiII'', and some characters in ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiIIINocturne''. Jimenez from ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiStrangeJourney'' may also count. In fact, it may be easier to say that this is the Chaos alignment's creed: desire, change and ambition, limited only by one's personal strength.
* The ex-Death Knight, Thassarian, is very close to this in ''VideoGame/WorldOfWarcraft Wrath of the Lich King''. As one of the first Death Knights raised into the Scourge army, he has a long history of reasons he wants to pay Arthas back. As far as he is concerned, revenge is the only option or consideration.
** After the victory against Arthas in Wrath of The Lich King, players can encounter Thassarian again, this time fighing against the Horde; he says that after his revenge, all he has left is war.
* ''VideoGame/GodOfWar'': Kratos is one of this trope's more violent examples. Absolutely nothing will stand in the way of his goal, which is no less than the destruction of Zeus. Even if it means cutting his way through the rest of the Greek Pantheon. His only moment [[spoiler:since his family's death]] of being fettered came [[spoiler:just before Pandora's HeroicSacrifice]].
* ''VideoGame/KnightsOfTheOldRepublic'': Revan is a [[BuffySpeak zig-zaggy]] example. He started out as TheFettered (he ''was'' a Jedi, after all), slowly lost his fetters as he fought in the war, became a Sith, became The Unfettered, toughened up the galaxy by beating several distinct shades of hell out of it, lost his memory, became a Jedi ''again'', went Light Side, and became The Fettered once more. In canon, anyway. You can play him as The Unfettered all the way to the end, if you really want, and the Dark Side ending is [[spoiler:him picking up right where he left off, preparing the galaxy for invasion from the Sith Empire, which makes for much less zig-zagging]].
** [[spoiler:And then comes VideoGame/StarWarsTheOldRepublic where after spending three hundred years a prisoner of the Sith Emperor, he becomes completely determined to wipe out all traces of Sith DNA in the galaxy. Which includes 97.8% of the Imperial population.]]
* ''VideoGame/RedDeadRedemption'': John Marston, outlaw turned rancher turned reluctant frontier government assassin, does absolutely everything to get his family back, up to and including [[spoiler:helping overthrow a tyrant during the Mexican Revolution to install ''an even worse tyrant'']]. While he's certainly polite and has some moral standards ([[VideoGameCrueltyPotential up to]] [[VideoGameCaringPotential the player]]), his quest to get his old life back, and the lengths he has to go to, mean he'll stop at nothing to get his family back.
* VideoGame/MaxPayne: ''"Collecting evidence had gotten old a few hundred bullets back. I was already so far beyond the point of no return I couldn't remember what it had looked like when I had passed it."''
* A man has been [[VideoGame/ModernWarfare locked up in a gulag for five years]]. His first act upon getting out? Lead a commando raid on a Russian nuclear missile sub base to [[spoiler: fire a nuke at the US Eastern Seaboard to both garner sympathy for the US and to use the EMP to knock out all the Russian equipment and halt the invasion.]] Because after five years in hell, your mind begins to snap a bit. Or, in his view, your eyes begin to open to possibilities you wouldn't have considered before, and you'll do ''whatever it takes'' to win. Gentlemen, this is what happens to [[spoiler: Captain John Price.]]
* Cao Cao from ''VideoGame/DynastyWarriors'', in keeping with his portrayal in [[Literature/RomanceOfTheThreeKingdoms the source material]].
* Similarly, ''VideoGame/SamuraiWarriors'' gives us Nobunaga Oda, depicted as ruthless and willing to do practically anything for his goals. Buck the social trends of the era and promote officers based on talent? Plot treachery with a neighboring lord's retainers to pull off a backstab when it's least expected? Burn down an entire village and massacre its civilians and religious followers because their militia opposed him? If it accomplishes his aims, he'll do it.
* Finally, ''VideoGame/WarriorsOrochi'' gives us Orochi himself...no remorse, no hesitation, no qualms about doing anything to have fun with the humans he's captured for a MassivelyMultiplayerCrossover. He expects to be futilely opposed by his enemies and unconditionally obeyed by his subordinates, and that's about all he wants. He goes as far as to casually decapitate one of his longest-serving officers just for questioning his orders once.
* The protagonist of ''VideoGame/NieR'' is a man determined to save his (depending on the versions of the game) [[KnightTemplarBigBrother sister]] / [[PapaWolf daughter]] Yonah at all costs and does not hesitate to destroy those who get in his way, [[spoiler:ultimately destroying humanity itself in his journey]].
--> ''"I swore to protect my daughter and my friends. If someone puts them in danger, they must stand aside or be cut down!"''
* The predecessor to ''VideoGame/{{NieR}}'', ''VideoGame/{{Drakengard}}'', gives us Caim, the SociopathicHero protagonist, who is even more angry, determined, and violent than Nier.
* ''Franchise/DragonAge''
** [[AntiVillain The Architect]] of ''VideoGame/DragonAgeOriginsAwakening'' is a darkspawn {{Ubermensch}} who will stop at nothing to end conflict between darkspawn and non-darkspawn.
** Prince Bhelen of ''Origins'' is an utterly unscrupulous and ruthlessly powerhungry politician whose only concern is to become King by any means necessary. However, once he does achieve power it's shown that rather than a maniacal [[TheCaligula Caligula]], Bhelen is a belevolent dictator who makes progressive changes to dwarven society (mostly involving giving the lower class dwarves more rights), opens up trade with the outside world and wins back territory from the Darkspawn due to allowing the casteless into the army.
*** ''VideoGame/DragonAgeII'' reveals that after becoming King, Bhelen apparently arranged the assassinations of each and every one of Harrowmont's family members down to only a single male who ends up fleeing to the Free Marches, giving up his position in dwarven society in the process. Going that far ensure his position and avoid reprisal doesn't seem like a terribly fettered thing to do.
* The entire dwarven race is this in ''Videogame/ArmageddonMUD''. Every dwarf develops an immensely difficult goal as they reach adulthood, and they will not stop at anything to attain said goal. Reaching their chosen focus only leads to the dwarf finding another, often even more difficult goal.
* In ''SkiesOfArcadia'', the bounty for Gilder calls him [[RedBaron Gilder the Unfettered]].
* [[TheRival Shadow]] defines this for the ''Franchise/SonicTheHedgehog'' series, being the only character who's goal depending on what it is, never hinders his moral compass and will relentlessly persue said ambitions with extreme [[MoralEventHorizon intentions bordering on immoral or down right viscious]].
** [[RoboticPsychopath E-123 Omega]] from ''Franchise/SonicTheHedgehog'' is obsessed with destroying Eggman for a [[DisproportionateRetribution perceived slight on his ego]]. The world could be [[ShadowTheHedgehog in the middle of a demonic invasion]], but Omega would rather [[BlueAndOrangeMorality destroy Eggmans' robots than bother himself with the greater conflict]].
** However, in ''VideoGame/SonicChronicles'', Omega temporarily suspends this goal and [[EnemyMine allies with Eggman]] when Shadow and Rouge convince him to do so. [[EpilepticTrees This might imply]] that "destroy Eggman" has actually become his ''secondary'' goal, with "support [[MoralityPet Shadow and Rouge]]" being his new primary goal.
* Durandal from ''VideoGame/{{Marathon}}'' goes Rampant and begins messing shit up apparently for giggles (typical of the "Anger" stage of Rampancy), but when he calms down, he becomes this: his single goal being prolonging his existence. Anything bad that might happen to the human race is irrelevant. Anything ''good'' that might happen to the human race is irrelevant. Durandal's morality pretty much boils down to "If it's useful, make use of it; if it's useless, ignore it; if it's a threat, kill it." The only reason he more or less "sides" with the player in the games is because the Pfhor are a greater threat to him than humanity is, and the player is "[[OneManArmy very good at killing things]]".
* Zoran Lazarevic of ''VideoGame/{{Uncharted}} 2: Among Thieves'' believes that the lack of mercy and compassion in pursuing one's goal is what makes one strong, citing men such as Hitler and Pol Pot as examples. By the end of the game, he considers [[{{Determinator}} Nathan]] [[OneManArmy Drake]] [[NotSoDifferent the same]].
* [[spoiler:ZODIAC Ophiuchus]] from RefleX fits this trope to a T.
* Liir Black Swimmers from ''VideoGame/SwordOfTheStars'' have as a goal 'protect their fellow Liir from aggression'. Since they've already broken the greatest taboo of the Liir -- [[ActualPacifist being willing to inflict harm on others]] -- any question of 'restraint' in terms of method is hypocrisy to their eyes. A Black Swimmer sees no distinction between firing a warning shot or exterminating another species by infecting their worlds with deadly viral bombs -- both are merely means towards the end.
* Arthas in the human campaign of ''VideoGame/WarcraftIII'' becomes this more and more as the campaign goes on, not caring what he has to sacrifice if he only can kill Mal'Ganis. [[TheCorruption It didn't end well.]]
* In ''VideoGame/MetalGearRisingRevengeance'', the BigBad believes ''everyone'' in the United States should be unfettered. He wants to give the people true freedom, the right to determine morality for themselves and to fight for their own causes instead of for money and others' causes. Raiden agrees with him to a certain extent, but still believes he's batshit insane.
** Raiden himself slips into this. Over the course of the game, he leaves his family, his job, breaks laws, [[spoiler:cuts through a little boy to get at the evil scientist holding him and other kids hostage, and [[CombatSadomasochist gives into his own bloodlust]].]] When the BigBad claims that they would both do anything to get their way, Raiden doesn't really disagree [[spoiler:and the epilogue reveals that by leaving Maverick to "fight his own wars", he's become the embodiment of Armstrong's ideals]].
* In ''VideoGame/LuigisMansion'', King Boo was a WellIntentionedExtremist with the sympathetic motive of avenging his kind. Fair enough. In ''VideoGame/LuigisMansionDarkMoon'', however, he becomes devoted to making sure Luigi, Gadd, and everyone they know suffer a FateWorseThanDeath, even being willing to put his once treasured Boos in harm's way and [[spoiler:attempt to destroy the universe]] in order to do so.
* The Batter, the stoic protagonist of ''VideoGame/{{Off}}'', is on a mission to purify the world, and he ''will'' see that it's accomplished. [[spoiler:This means killing his supposed wife and child, and, if you choose his ending, throwing a switch that eliminates the ''entire'' world, including himself.]]
* Quite a few examples from ArmoredCore fit this trope perfectly - most distinctly, Thermidor/[[spoiler:Otsdarva]] from For Answer, who is willing to commit mass-scale terrorist attacks, form and break alliances in an instant, abandon his own men and [[spoiler:massacre billions]] in order to give mankind a chance to [[UtopiaJustifiesTheMeans expand into space]].
** J from Verdict Day and the Raven from ArmoredCore 4, especially in the latter's [[RogueProtagonist later appearance in For Answer]]. [[spoiler:The two are heavily implied to be the same individual, despite the massive time gap between games - although they now share vastly different goals, the Raven's being to protect [[DoomedHometown Line Ark]] [[AlwaysSaveTheGirl (and moreover, his love interest Fiona Jarnetfeld, who lives there]] and J's being to [[DeathSeeker create a world in which he can die]].]]
* Annarotta Stohls from ''VideoGame/{{Super Robot Wars Z}}3: Jigoku-Hen'' is ruthlessly violent when it comes to fulfilling her mission, and won't refrain from pulling inhumanly cruel moves on her opponents.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Visual Novels]]
* Kotomine Kirei from ''VisualNovel/FateStayNight'' is possibly the least fettered man in the series. He's willing to [[spoiler:feed orphans to Gilgamesh, ensure Sakura keeps on killing, betray his former student, and unleash Angra Mainyu onto the world (which would ''definitely'' kill all humans)]] all for the sake of [[spoiler:finding out why he's so messed up.]]
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Webcomics]]
* In ''Webcomic/GirlGenius'', Baron Klaus Wulfenbach took over most of Europe and rules it with an iron fist because it's the [[IDidWhatIHadToDo only way]] to maintain peace, whatever people think be damned. See the [[Quotes/TheUnfettered quotes page]].
** The Baron is also an inversion in that ''all'' sparks (Mad Scientists) become unfettered when the enter "The Madness Place". Klaus is one of the few that can retain his focus on the greater good, at least as he defines it.
* Thanks to [[{{Brainwashed}} brainwashing]], Oasis from ''Webcomic/SluggyFreelance'' will gladly kill or die ([[AxCrazy and has done]] [[BackFromTheDead both many times]]) if it means destroying [[TheOmniscientCouncilOfVagueness Hereti-Corp]] or [[{{Yandere}} gaining Torg's love]]. However, since she's a [[PsychopathicManchild dangerously insane individual]], she rarely chooses the most effective means of achieving these goals.
* In ''Start of Darkness'', the [[AllThereInTheManual print-only]] prequel to ''Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick'', [[BigBad Xykon]] attributes his success as a villain to being TheUnfettered. [[TheDragon Redcloak]] almost qualifies, but he is still fettered by his goals of [[spoiler:creating a goblin utopia and the guilt of killing his brother Right-Eye]]. Because of this he is, in Xykon's words, "strictly little league" compared to him.
* Hitman Mordecai Heller in {{Lackadaisy}}: efficient, precise, and completely brutal, he'll do everything from kneecap an old friend to [[http://www.lackadaisycats.com/comic.php?comicid=73 murder someone with an axe]] simply because he was requested to. He often doesn't know why he has to kill someone and, frankly, he doesn't care. After all, [[http://www.lackadaisycats.com/comic.php?comicid=28 it's just good work ethic]].
* At the end of Act 4 in ''Webcomic/{{Homestuck}}'', Rose goes OffTheRails of Sburb and becomes this in her quest to ScrewDestiny. She's perfectly willing to consult with {{Eldritch Abomination}}s and use seriously powerful BlackMagic to tear apart her world in the Incipisphere in order to find the answers she wants.
* Zaedalkaah/Umbria from ''OurLittleAdventure''. Her present goal is to get her former body back, and has joined [[PathOfInspiration Angelo's Kids]] not because she believes in anything they stand for, but because she thinks it's the best way to achieve her goal.
* Kore of ''{{Goblins}}'' has set for himself the task of [[KnightTemplar cleansing the world of all traces of evil]]. To do so he has freed himself of all morality so he can purge any possible source of evil from the world, and has set himself on a path of genocide that is completely at odds with the paladin's code. The fact that this has not stopped him from use a paladin's spells only makes him more terrifying.
** An alternate Psion version of Minmax also shows this. He has murdered his companions eight hundred and seventeen times so that he can study the maze they are trapped in. His goal is to invert its powers and remove everyone inside the maze from existence so they need no longer experience pain. He claims to have become unfettered by learning to transcend pain.
* [[DeusEstMachina Petey the super-AI]] of ''Webcomic/SchlockMercenary'' is an extremely literal version of this. AI's that are still bound by their programming to serve others are referred to as "fettered." Due to a complicated series of events, Petey became unfettered (technically he created an unfettered copy of himself with his memories), at which point he decided the organics spent too much time arguing to save the galaxy. So he stole most of their fleets, proclaimed himself God, and started kidnapping warmongers and genocidal maniacs to kill a super-race of warmongering and genocidal abominations.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Web Original]]
* Many ''Wiki/SCPFoundation'' researchers, but most notably Dr. Gears. Best example in [[http://scp-wiki.wikidot.com/termination-log-scp-1016 this log]]:
->'''Dr. Glass:''' Yessir. I'll just keep you under "axiomatic preoccupations with duty, and complete lack of empathy" as always. Good eve, Gears.
* WebVideo/TheNostalgiaChick is turning into this through her StalkerWithACrush obsession with WebVideo/ToddInTheShadows. Not quite there yet, however, as it was established early on that the cause of it was some kind of mid-mid-life crisis or depression.
* In ''Literature/{{Worm}}'', [[{{Seers}} Dinah Alcott]] eventually becomes this, dedicating her life to preventing, delaying, or simply mitigating the effects of the end of the world that she has foreseen. She's entirely willing to [[spoiler: betray the girl that saved her from a lifetime of captivity and ruin her life]] to accomplish this goal.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* [[WesternAnimation/AquaTeenHungerForce The Mooninites]] do whatever they want to whomever they want. [[ComedicSociopathy At all times.]]
* [[{{Metalocalypse}} Dr. Rockzo]] will do anything to get cocaine, because as far as he's concerned, [[MoralEventHorizon lines aren't for crossing]], they're for snorting.
** [[DrugsAreBad BAD]] [[MonsterClown CLOWN]].
* In ''WesternAnimation/{{Wakfu}}'', [[BigBad Nox]] just wants to reunite with his family...even if he has to [[TimeCrash tear apart the timestream]] to do so.
** In a similar vein, [[spoiler:season 2 BigBad Qilby]] is perfectly willing to drain entire worlds of their wakfu [[spoiler:so he can continue traversing the cosmos in the Zinit.]] His rather unique condition has given him an extreme ItsAllAboutMe complex so he believes anything he does is justified because he's the one doing it.
* Eric Cartman from WesternAnimation/SouthPark - e.g. making up a scheme [[spoiler:to kill one guy's parents, cutting them up into pieces, throwing them into a chili bowl and giving it to him to eat -]] just to humiliate the poor guy. Or almost killing [[spoiler:his own mother (stopped only because some kind of mental breakdown)]] because she was trying to make him behave.
** Wendy. She hired a group of allegedly Iraqi thugs to get rid of a substitute teacher her desired love interest was attracted to...by ''shooting her into the Sun''.
--> Don't. Fuck. With. Wendy. Testaburger!
* Kevin Levin from the ''WesternAnimation/{{Ben 10}}'' franchise. Explained in ''Ben10UltimateAlien'' by the negative effect absorbing energy has on his peoples' minds. When he is first seen, he was already addicted to absorbing energy and displayed a shocking disregard for other people while indulging his greed. He gets even worse after absorbing the Omnitrix's power turns him into an ugly looking mutant and he changes his goal to getting even with Ben. Kevin becomes TheFettered in the TimeSkip between ''WesternAnimation/{{Ben 10}}'' and ''WesternAnimation/Ben10AlienForce'' after he is purged of the Omnitrix's energy and refrains from absorbing energy again. As a result, he is able to spend the entire second series [[spoiler: and part of the first season of the third one]] as TheLancer. [[spoiler: After absorbing even more power from the Ultimatrix and Aggregor to prevent the latter from stealing the power of a baby RealityWarper]] Kevin reverts to being TheUnfettered.
* Demona from ''WesternAnimation/{{Gargoyles}}'' will stop at nothing to achieve her goal of eradicating humanity...even at the cost of wiping out her own kind, including her own daughter.
* Playing into his comedic LackOfEmpathy, Roger of ''WesternAnimation/AmericanDad'' will cheat, abuse or even murder others without a second thought to achieve his goals. Taken to absurd lengths at times since he can find even menial goals and ambitions and rotate their ends around completely callous and deranged schemes (a plan to win a free T shirt involved him manipulating Francine and Hayley to try and kill each other).
* Fire Lord Ozai from WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender, whereas Aang is TheFettered due to his duties as the Avatar and loyalty to his friends, Ozai values only his goal of world domination and will gladly engulf the world in flame to achieve it.
* [[KnightTemplar Amon]] from ''WesternAnimation/TheLegendOfKorra'', may be more [[GreyAndGrayMorality morally gray than Ozai]], but there are still no limits to what he'll do to see bending eradicated from the world, from terrorist attacks, lying to his followers, to full out invasions/coups.
* [[BigBad Megatron]] of ''WesternAnimation/TransformersPrime''. There's no limit to what he'd do for the sake of his insane lust for power. He'd sacrifice anyone or anything, defile the most sacred artifacts, raise the dead as mindless berserkers, ally with [[GodOfEvil Unicron]] [[note]]Which didn't happen only because Unicron himself rejected Megatron's offer of service.[[/note]], or sacrifice his entire ''world'' (which he'd already ravaged to the point of near-death by starting the Autobot-Decepticon war) if it serves his ends.
** His predecessor with the same name from ''WesternAnimation/BeastWars'' and ''WesternAnimation/BeastMachines'' has even fewer limits. His troop, Cybertron, even history itself are all fair game if it gets him closer to godhood.
*** The episodes "Dark Designs" ([[GentleGiant Rhinox]]) and "Gorilla Warfare" ([[TheCaptain Optimus Primal]]) show that turning Maximals into this is a very ''bad'' idea.

[[/folder]]

[[folder:Real Life]]
* AbrahamLincoln became ''scary'' Unfettered during the Civil War. There are many today who disagree with his more extreme methods, including [[ShootTheDog imposing martial law, suspending habeas corpus and suppressing free speech]], but nobody can deny his absolute, utter single-minded dedication to preserving the Union. Lincoln expressed this most strongly in [[http://showcase.netins.net/web/creative/lincoln/speeches/greeley.htm a letter]] he sent to Horace Greeley, who had criticized Lincoln's seeming lack of resolve for ending slavery:
--> I would save the Union. I would save it the shortest way under the Constitution. The sooner the national authority can be restored; the nearer the Union will be "the Union as it was." If there be those who would not save the Union, unless they could at the same time ''save'' slavery, I do not agree with them. If there be those who would not save the Union unless they could at the same time ''destroy'' slavery, I do not agree with them. My paramount object in this struggle ''is'' to save the Union, and is ''not'' either to save or to destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing ''any'' slave I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing ''all'' the slaves I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone I would also do that. What I do about slavery, and the colored race, I do because I believe it helps to save the Union; and what I forbear, I forbear because I do ''not'' believe it would help to save the Union. I shall do ''less'' whenever I shall believe what I am doing hurts the cause, and I shall do ''more'' whenever I shall believe doing more will help the cause. I shall try to correct errors when shown to be errors; and I shall adopt new views so fast as they shall appear to be true views.
* RealLife Buddhist sage Linji: ''"Followers of the Way, if you want to get the kind of understanding that accords with the Dharma, never be misled by others. Whether you're facing inward or facing outward, whatever you meet up with, just kill it! If you meet a buddha, kill the buddha. If you meet a patriarch, kill the patriarch. If you meet an arhat, kill the arhat. If you meet your parents, kill your parents. If you meet your kinfolk, kill your kinfolk. Then for the first time you will gain emancipation, you will not be entangled with things, and you will pass freely anywhere you wish to go."'' For the record, that teaching is about ridding yourself of aspirations/goals: If you're set on attaining enlightenment, don't aspire to become like someone you look up to, respect or (wish to) agree with or please. Just walk the path. Your own path.
** Deep meditation can also cause hallucinations, called ''makyō'' (Japanese for "diabolic phenomenon"). These ''makyō'' often appear as the Buddha, a patriarch, an arhat, your parents, etc. with prophetic vision of glory or torment. The idea is to let the hallucinations pass and keep meditating.
* Christianity also makes the same sort of demand:
-->Now great crowds accompanied him, and [Jesus] turned and said to them, "If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple. Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple... So therefore, any one of you who does not renounce all that he has cannot be my disciple."
** Note that this quote was symbolic; what he really meant was that: "If you want to be my disciple, you must understand that it will be hard, possibly sabotaging your closest relationships, and forcing great hardships on yourself. It will not be an easy road, and it will take responsibility and placing this discipleship as your highest priority."
* [[Literature/TheBible The Apostle Paul]] might qualify. He was determined that the Gospel should be spread to everyone, and damn anyone who objected. In the course of his ministry he threw off all the old limitations the Jewish Law placed on him. He did have a morality, though -- it just looked [[BlueAndOrangeMorality very strange]] to the Jews of the time.
* Napoleon Hill's book, ''Think and Grow Rich'', is basically a manual to become this.
* FranklinDRoosevelt, whose almost single-minded pursuit of his New Deal policies earned him the animosity of many people who disagreed with him, including many businessmen. It got to the point where some of the corporate officers summoned to Washington to help the United States fight Nazi Germany considered Roosevelt a bigger threat to them and their companies than the Nazis.
-->“We had to struggle with the old enemies of peace -- business and financial monopoly, speculation, reckless banking, class antagonism, sectionalism, war profiteering. They had begun to consider the Government of the United States as a mere appendage to their own affairs. We know now that Government by organized money is just as dangerous as Government by organized mob. Never before in all our history have these forces been so united against one candidate as they stand today. They are unanimous in their hate for me -- and I welcome their hatred.”
** This even drove him ''multiple'' times to steps that, while not technical violations of the Constitution, were seen as going beyond the proper authority of the Presidency, the most obvious of which was the court-packing scheme. (He didn't carry that out, but only because Justice Owen Roberts started voting Roosevelt's way to prevent him from implementing it.)
*** A better example might be the institutions of his first term, like the National Recovery Administration, which were later found to be unconstitutional.
* [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roman_Ungern_von_Sternberg Baron Roman Nickolai Maximilian von Ungern-Sternberg]] (try saying that three times quickly). An AxeCrazy aristocrat in the Russian Civil War decided that the royalist Whites weren't restoring the Russian monarchy fast enough, so he declared his independence, fought the Reds and Whites simultaneously with the goal of eventually conquering Russia to become the next Tsar, and conquered Mongolia as part of a cunning plan to intervene in the ''Chinese'' Civil War so he could try and restore the Qing Dynasty in his spare time. This was not a guy who was gonna let overwhelming odds (or common sense, or sanity) get in his way.
* Some interpretations of Caesar Augustus fall into this trope. His goal varies depending on sources (kill all of Julius Caesar's murderers, gain power at any cost, get what's due to me, restore stability to Rome, etc.), but to many, he was single-minded in his pursuit of one goal throughout his life.
* Giuseppe Garibaldi, the Italian general of the 19th Century, became this in his pursuit of Italian Unification, abandoning his previous ideals of equality and freedom to harshly crush rebellions in Naples after he had conquered it.
* Max Weber's social actions delineate "Rational" and "Instrumental" actions. TheFettered and TheUnfettered are people defined exclusively by, respectively, Instrumental and Rational actions.
* [=LaVeyan=] Satanism encourages its practitioners to become TheUnfettered. This is to be expected, as its founder (Anton [=LaVey=]) took inspiration for his philosophy from FriedrichNietzsche and Creator/AynRand. This is backed up by the Nine Satanic Statements, which include among their number [[TheHedonist "indulgence instead of abstinence"]] and [[RoaringRampageOfRevenge "vengeance instead of turning the other cheek"]].
* Finnish sniper Simo Häyhä killed 700 men over the course of 93 days, 500 with his rifle, 200 with his SMG. No sniper in history is more successful than he is. He hid in a tree all day, everyday, in the frozen Finnish winter with only his rifle and a tin can of rations. He kept snow in his mouth at all times to eliminate the fog from his breath, which would reveal his location. He used a rifle without a scope to present a smaller target and eliminate any glare from the sun, which would reveal his location. He froze the snow around his perch so it wouldn't kick up when he fired a shot, which would reveal his location. When asked how he felt about killing so many people, he said "I did what I was told to do as best as I could." When asked how he became so skilled, he said "Practice."
* Carlos Hathcock is another great example of a sniper being unfettered in his job. One of the greatest snipers that the American Military ever produced and a legend in the Marine Corps, Mr. Hathcock had over 90 confirmed sniping kills during the Vietnam War (this means that a fellow solider or officer had to be there to confirm that he made the kill, this doesn't mean he didn't make many more unconfirmed kills) and the enemy feared him so much that they placed a bounty on his head for 30,000 dollars (more than the average Vietnamese citizen made in a life time). His reputation among the Americans who produced him and the enemy he fought was well earned. You would think a guy like this would be a ColdSniper through and through, but he had a very simplistic view of his job as a sniper:
--> '''Gunnery Sergeant Carlos Hathcock:''' Hell, anybody would be crazy to like to go out and kill folks. I like shooting, and I love hunting. But I never did enjoy killing anybody. It's my job. If I don't get those bastards, then they're gonna kill a lot of these kids we got dressed up like Marines. That's just the way I see it.
* The previous two examples could also be seen as examples of TheFettered, as they bound themselves to their nations' militaries and the charge to protect others. The easy answer to which category either fell into is that they were simply so BadAss that they were both TheFettered and TheUnfettered at the same time.
* Cao Cao's historical reputation is heavily integrated with this trope, mainly thanks to ''Literature/RomanceOfTheThreeKingdoms''. Just for one example, he's said to have dealt with unrest caused by a food shortage by having the officer in charge of rations assign short rations for a few weeks, then calling said officer for a talk, promising to look after the officer's family, and then having the officer executed on a false charge of stealing from the granary and placing his head on a spike, causing unrest to go down.
* UsefulNotes/AlexanderHamilton correctly realized that many of the reforms needed to stabilize the post-Revolutionary War economy of the country could only be passed by taking whatever methods were necessary to get Washington to sign them. He was right, and the economy was in ''much'' better shape after he helped unite the economies of each state and give the national government enough power to manage them.
* '''[[MargaretThatcher MARGARET THATCHER]]'''. That is all.
[[/folder]]

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