The Falcon and Doc Samson appear as part of Code Red, a team of government-sponsored superheroes who act in opposition to the Avengers. In the comics, the Falcon is Captain America's partner and a longtime member of the Avengers himself, while Doc Samson is an ally of the Hulk. Partially justified though, since it turns out they were brainwashed by the Red Skull. (And both of them have had notable Brainwashed and Crazy stories in the comics; in Falcon's case at the hands of the Skull.)
In the comics, Kirk Langstrom created the serum that turned him into Man-Bat to cure his own deafness, but on The Batman, he transforms himself into the Man-Bat out of a desire to be feared. That said, by his appearance in the fifth season, he's done a Heel–Face Turn, saying that he's done with being Man-Bat and even offers to assist in stopping the Terrible Trio.
Unlike in Batman: TAS where he is a sympathetic figure trying to cure his wife, Mr. Freeze is a thug who enjoy robbing banks.
Chief Angel Rojas is a Hispanicexpy of Harvey Bullock—expect even as a Dirty Cop, Bullock had lows he wouldn't sink to, like using fellow cops as a hostage or be a (complete) jackass to other officers, whereas Rojas has done these things.
One example is the Big BadAnarky. In the comics, Anarky was depicted as twelve year old Lonnie Machin, a political anti-government activist and altruist who saw humanity as naturally good, but with consumerism and big government getting in the way. He wasn't a villain more than he was an anti-hero who even Batman acknowledged was well intentioned but misguided. Beware's Anarky is a self-diagnosed sociopath and aimless terrorist whose only difference between him and The Joker is name and chess theme.
Sapphire Stagg, the good-natured love interest of Metamorpho in the comics, who is here depicted as very much similar in nature to her corrupt father, Simon Stagg, though her feelings for Metamorpho remain intact.
Harvey Dent, who is usually a man of justice and a big supporter of Batman (at least before his transformation into Two-Face), is now an opportunistic, corrupt politician who targets Batman and Katana as part of Gotham's problem, who eventually teams up with Anarky to kill him and hires Deathstroke to take down Batman.
Sort of with Ra's Al Ghul. His actual motivations are unclear, but he doesn't seem to have the Well-Intentioned Extremist goals of his comic counterpart. On the other hand, he seems hellbent on focusing on Gotham only, so the rest of the world doesn't have to deal with genocidal plots.
And then there's Humpty Dumpty. His comic counterpart was a Harmless Villain at best and a Tragic Villain at worst. While he starts off as tragic as his comic counterpart, he's become a sadistic psychopath driven by revenge who loves to put those he feels have wronged him in elaborate deathtraps. Essentially just add Jigsaw and the Riddler and you've got him.
Alcuard is a mole and ends up turning on the main characters, including Simon Belmont, in favor of his father, Dracula. In the Castlevania video games, Alcuard's firmly on the side of the good guys, hates Dracula, and is one of Simon's main allies in the series.
Also, King Hippo is a thug who works for Mother Brain in the cartoon, where he's an Anti-Villain at best in Punch-Out!!, hardly as mean as Mac's other opponents. He even offers to take Mac out to lunch!
In the Color Classics short "Greedy Humpty Dumpty", the title character goes from being a neutral figure to a greedy tyrant who orders his servants and subjects to build his castle walls high enough to reach the sun, which he has become convinced is made of gold.
In the book Cranberry Christmas, Cyrus Grape is a curmudgeonly old man who refuses to let anyone skate on his pond, but gets his comeuppance when Mr. Whiskers finds a deed that proves the lake is actually on his property. In the animated special, Cyrus is a much more active antagonist, sneaking around and messing up Mr. Whiskers's house in order to keep Mr. Whiskers from finding that deed (whereas in the book he had no idea it existed).
Morrigan in the Darkstalkers cartoon. In the games, she is just having fun with no regard for the rest of the cast, in the show, she's Pyron's minion. The series finale implies she becomes closer to how she is in the games if a season 2 ever came. Also, Anakaris, Bishamon, and to some extent Demitri were victims of this.
Klarion the Witch Boy, whose portrayal in the comics generally ranges from an annoying troublemaker (Jack Kirby's version) to a well-meaning anti-hero (Grant Morrison's version), is clearly evil when he appears in Batman: The Animated Series, stealing control of Etrigan from Jason Blood, tearing Gotham apart simply for fun, and using potential lethal spells on Batman when the hero tries to stop him. He finally removes any doubt what a despicable brat he is by telling Etrigan to kill Blood (who is aging at an accelerated rate and nearly helpless due to the Demon being separated from him).
The tie-in film Batman: Mystery of the Batwoman presents Batwoman as a reckless vigilante who doesn't have qualms about lethal force, which is why DC insisted that they didn't use Kathy Kane. This didn't stop the makers from homaging her via naming one of the suspects "Kathy Duquesne". Nor making that Kathy one of the Batwomen.
While she didn't know all the details and did a Heel–Face Turn to help her teammates when she realized what would happen to Earth, Hawkgirl was still The Mole, spying on the League for Thanagar and helping them occupy Earth in the Season 2 finale.
This trope is the reason why Aresia, Tsukuri, Hro Talak, Galatea, and the Ultimen are Expies as DC wouldn't allow either woman who's been codenamed Fury to attempt to commit Gendercide (Aresia), Katana to be party to said Gendercide (Tsukuri), Hawkman to be willing to blow up the Earth to help Thanagar win a war (Hro Talak), Power Girl to be a hitwoman for Amanda Waller (Galatea), or the Canon Foreigners and Canon Immigrants of the Super Friends (namely Samurai, Black Vulcan, and the Wonder Twins) to attempt to kill members of the League (the Ultimen, barring Apache Chief expy Long Shadow, who still retained his sanity and tried to stop it).
Rampage, a minor heroine from Superman Post-Crisis comics, is turned into a villain in Unlimited.
Justice League Action: Toyman is usually a villain, but what's surprising is which one is the villain; it's Hiro Okumara, aka the HEROIC Toyman, who now instead of a hero is a villain like Winslow Shotts.
Medusa and The Inhumans in The Fantastic Four (1978). In the comics, the Inhumans are elitist, arrogant and abrasive, but are on the side of good, and usually only fight other heroes due to Values Dissonances or misunderstandings. In the TV show, Medusa flat out wants to conquer the world and subjugate mankind, and kidnaps the Fantastic Four in order to force them to help the Inhumans accomplish this. Also, in the comics, Medusa only joined the Frightful Four because she was amnesiac at the time and was coerced by the Wizard. The cartoon has her join willingly to get revenge on the Fantastic Four.
Hades wasn't the only guy to fall victim to this in Hercules. In the ongoing series, King Midas - of all people - was made into a would-be Evil Overlord. (Albeit not a very good one and one who repents at the end, but still...)
Hecate is portrayed as an evil goddess who is even worse than Hades, planning to kill Hades and take over the Underworld. In mythology, Hecate was a Dark Is Not Evil goddess - besides having strong protective aspects, she assisted Demeter in finding the abducted Persephone and took pity on a slave who had foiled Hera's attempt to prevent Heracles' birth (and had been transformed into a polecat). While she lived in the Underworld, she had no intention of overthrowing Hades and became a close friend of Persephone in particular.
Cousin Mel in Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer. In the original song, she only has a brief mention as playing cards with Grandpa after Grandma's death, and doesn't seem particularly malicious. In the animated special, she is the Big Bad.
The animated movie Heidi's Song is a curious example of this, as it not only makes Fräulein Rottenmeier much more villainous and scary, but also turns Sebastian the butler (in the book a Servile Snarker but very much a kind man) into her Dragon — but utterly reverses it when it comes to Tinette the maid, who in the book is a haughty and snooty woman whom Heidi is slightly afraid of but in the movie is a sweet and sympathetic person. Possibly the shift was done so the movie wouldn't have two female villains.
Batman is the Token Evil Teammate among the heroes here, being a vampire who will not hesitate to kill criminals. However, he's not Bruce Wayne in this version, but Kirk Langstrom, (as in the Man-Bat in the mainstream comic) so he can also count as Adaptational Heroism.
Highfather is just as treacherous as Darkseid is in the mainstream universe, if not moreso.
Dear lord, Harley Quinn. Clearly the most evil version of Harley to date, she's a chainsaw wielding Serial Killer who keeps the rotting corpses of her family like trophies. Even worse, the Joker is nowhere to be seen, implying she wound up like this on her own.
Timber Wolf's father Dr. Mar Londo gets this treatment in the Legion of Super-Heroes animated series. While still responsible for his son's powers in the original comics (at least in Pre-Zero Hour continuity), he was in no way even suggested to be as abusive and manipulative as his animated counterpart.
While the original toyline really had no clear moral alignment to speak of, the Madballs cartoon by Nelvana had the second series Madballs (Wolf Breath, Bruise Brother, Fist Face, Splitting Headache, Swine Sucker, Lock Lips, Snake Bait, and Freaky Fullback) become a group of evil balls known as the Badballs to oppose the heroic Madballs (Screamin' Meemie, Freakella, Dusty Dustbrain, Skullface, Hornhead, Aargh, and Slobulus). It's particularly jarring because the comic book series by Marvel Comics portrayed all the Madballs as being good.
Avengers, Assemble! sees Hyperion gain the villainy of King Hyperion, his Mirror Universe counterpart from Exiles. As such, he's depicted as a sociopathic Well-Intentioned Extremist who is revealed to have destroyed his own planet when they wouldn't submit to his rule. However, given the rest of the Squardon appeared and how they behaved, it may be a downplayed version as they're more in line with the Squardon Sinister, including Nighthawk displaying the type of behavior that caused the Supreme version to leave the Squadron in disgust, though played straight with Power Princess and Nuke as the Squadron Sinister never had versions of them.
Anubis is a villain in the show, when he was actually a good god in Egyptian Mythology who guarded and protected the dead. Set is also seen with Anubis, while Set disowned him in the myths for siding with Horus. Other gods and goddesses, like Bastet and Bes, appear as villainous Monsters of the Week when they were not evil figures in mythology.
Ammit, on the other hand, is portrayed as a pet of the Big Bad. In Egyptian mythology she was a neutral enforcer of order and punisher of evil, although this quality made her feared by the ancient Egyptians.
The Old Man of the Mountain: The short is based after a pre-existing song, where the Old Man isn't quite so villainous as in the cartoon.
In the games and most cartoon adaptations, Dr. "Eggman" Robotnik is villainous, but with a highly affable and clownish demeanor, and in some cases leans into Anti-Villain territory. Robotnik of Sonic SatAM and to a lesser extent Sonic Underground, however, is a monstrous (and far less humorous) dictator that not only has taken over most of the planet but thrives almost lustfully on having any remaining civilians painfullyroboticized. This depiction is drifted in and out for both comic adaptations (although they refer to his more petty, comical personality a lot more).
In Sonic Boom, Shadow is a lone-wolf villain who antagonizes Sonic and friends for no real reason. In the games, while never the friendliest character, Shadow had sympathetic qualities and doubts over the morality of his actions even before his Heel–Face Turn and shows value and trust in his fellow Team Dark members.
Eddie Brock in the comics has some morals and wouldn't do half the things his Spider-Man Unlimited counterpart does, including being part of an Assimilation Plot and especially working with Carnage of all people.
In the comics and most adaptations, Curt Connors is a sympathetic character and generally good-natured when he isn't the Lizard. In Spider-Man (1981), he is portrayed as a megalomaniacal monster who may have mutated himself into a humanoid reptile on purpose (he is only seen as the Lizard, but his tattered clothes and demonstration of scientific knowledge suggests that he could still be Curt Connors), while Spider-Man: The New Animated Series portrays Connors as a much more bitter and unpleasant character even before his transformation.
Flint Marko AKA Sandman's daughter Keemia was a Cheerful Child in the comics and wasn't aware of her father's criminal activities. In Marvel's Spider-Man, she is a teenager who has his powers and joins his former boss Hammerhead's side, even though she hated her dad for working for the guy. She even murders Flint in their debut episode. She is also dubbed "Sandgirl" by Spider-Man.
The Street Fighter animated series made Zangief into one of M. Bison's lackeys, despite the fact that Zangief actually opposed Shadaloo in the games.
For most of the Super Friends series, Bizarro is depicted as a clear villain who has murderous designs on the super heroes. However, the final season depicts him faithfully from the comics as a well-meaning bumbler.
While the original comic book incarnation of Karai has interests that occasionally pit her against the turtles, she is unambiguously their ally. This has changed in the 2003 and 2012 cartoon adaptations, where she has been made into the Shredder's daughter and subordinate. While she will at times fight alongside the turtles, her divided loyalties result in periods where she is wholeheartedly against them.
The 1980s cartoon is notable for being the only version to portray the character of Leatherhead as truly villainous, as opposed toallotherversions where he is an ally of the Turtles, and any time he fights them in those continuities is because of him being either Not Himself or manipulated into doing it by another antagonist.
Irma in the 1987 series is April's dorky, boy crazed friend who worked with the turtles. In the 2012 series, she's actually a Kraang in a customized robotic suit who was The Mole, faking her friendship with April to find the Turtles' lair.
In other continuities, the Rat King was a lonely man who had the ability to control rats and wanted to be left alone. In the 1987 series, he sought to take over the city for his rat friends. 2003's Rat King only attacked the Turtles when they invaded his territory. 2012's Rat King, on the other hand, started out a Smug Snake scientist who faked concern for his colleague getting mutated so that he could create a serum to give him psychic powers. After becoming the Rat King, he sent his rats to attack New York and mind-controlled Splinter to attack the Turtles. Also, despite claiming to share his earlier incarnations' love for rats, he has no qualms with experimenting on them or sacrificing them in a fight.
In Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze and the 1987 series, Rahzar was a villain, but otherwise a very unintelligent one and cared for his partner, Tokka. The 2012 version, formerly the mutant Dog Pound (aka Chris Bradford), he's intelligent and a willing servant of the Shredder who takes pleasure at harming others and doesn't have a single concern for any of his teammates.
2003's Mozar was a Triceraton who believed Even Evil Has Standards, while his Mirage version existed in text only. 2012's Mozar is one of the Big Bad Ensemble in season 4 of 2012's Turtles, violent and willing to destroy his minions and planets to retrieve a black hole generator.
Shredder himself is an interesting case. While he was by no means a nice guy in the Mirage comic, his sole crime was the murder of Hamato Yoshi, something he did to avenge his own brother's death, and the only reason the Turtles went after him was to avenge Yoshi's death in Splinter's name; essentially, the conflict was closer to Grey and Gray Morality, with Shredder being the villain only because he was a dick compared to the more noble, sympathetic Turtles. In all the adaptations, he was made somewhat more villainous to give the Turtles better reasons to go after him, typically by giving him World Domination ambitions. The 2k3 incarnation, aka the Utrom Shredder, didn't even have a personal connection to Yoshi outside of killing him, and was instead an alien more interested in more material ambitions until his hatred of the Turtles grew to the point that he became an Omnicidal Maniac and tried to destroy the entire multiverse just to get rid of them. The Nickeldeon cartoon gets closer to the comic by having him focused on revenge again, but still keeps him the villain by having him follow Revenge Before Reason.
In the comics, Mad Mod, while initially a villain, eventually pulled a Heel–Face Turn and became a sincere supporter and ally of the new Teen Titans - he was the one who designed their costumes. In the show, he remains an irredeemable villain throughout.
Deathstroke, while still an enemy, was less supervillain and more mercenary. He only stepped to being a major enemy of the Titans after his son's accidental death, but even then he wasn't on par with the likes of The Joker or Lex Luthor. Slade (avoiding his moniker for censorship) however is a cruel sadist and essentially a domestic terrorist who has a penchant for mass destruction and manipulation.
Teen Titans Go! sees this zig-zagged and parodied with Terra. The original Teen Titans made her an example of Adaptational Heroism. In the episode "Terra-ized", she has actions similar to her comic book counterpart; and openly tries to seduce Beast Boy in order to get sensitive information on the Titans. Only Robin and Raven suspect her of villainy, while Cyborg and Starfire are not convinced despite Terra trying to bring them down every scene she's in. When Beast Boy tries to return her advances, she drops all pretense and decides to fight the Titans for the information she needs.
In Thunder Cats 2011, Pumyra receives this treatment. She was one of three survivors who joined the ThunderCats and was otherwise loyal to her teammates. In the 2011 series, she joined Mumm-Ra to exact revenge on Lion-O, admittedly for poor reasons.
In addition, Mumm-Ra is portrayed as a much more malevolent character than he was in the original series. In the former, his actions merely amounted to attacking the ThunderCats from time to time. But in the new series, the first thing he does is cross the Moral Event Horizon by murdering Lion-O's father while disguised as Panthro. And he only gets MUCH worse from there. Also, in the original he had one redeeming quality in the form of his genuine love for his pet dog Ma-Mutt. In the new series, Ma-Mutt has been adapted out, so Mumm-Ra is pretty much irredeemable.
Tublat the gorilla from Tarzan by Edgar Rice Burroughs. In Disney's The Legend of Tarzan, his character is merged rather confusingly with another, Kerchak. Since Disney decided to make their version of Kerchak (who is ironically more similar to Burroughs's Tublat in personality) more sympathetic, as a consequence they ended up making their version of Tublat more sinister, like the novel's Kerchak.
Similarly, Professor Phineas T. Philander went from Professor Porter's absent minded friend and colleague in the books to his rival and Smug Snake in the animated series.
In the Funny Animal adaptation The Legends of Treasure Island Long John Silver is a more straight up Laughably Evil villain and mostly void of the sympathetic Affably Evil facets of his novel counterpart (and most other variations of). Perhaps most notably, his fatherly role with Jim is completely gone and for the most part, he would love nothing better than to just send the boy down the plank, or worse.
In The Railway Series novels, Diesel only returned to Sodor once in the individual story "Thomas and the Evil Diesel" where he redeemed himself and was given good word to come back. In the Thomas and Friends series, Diesel made recurring returns to Sodor and eventually became a permanent resident, though he ultimately proved as nasty as before, usually acting as the key antagonistic engine and pulling cruel pranks. Similarly to the novel version though, he is given some sympathetic moments.
Reversed for Bulgy, a bus who disliked railways and tried to steal customers from the trains through lying that he accepted rail tickets. In the books, he is punished by being converted into a henhouse. While this is followed in his first appearance in the TV series, he is later repaired, changed into a vegetable stand, and softens towards the other characters.
Brainy in The Smurfs episode "King Smurf" became the titular character, whereas in the original comic book version he was a contender for the role of the village leader who was outvoted in favor of the Smurf who would become King Smurf. Also counts as a Composite Character, since Brainy and King Smurf were not the same person in the original comic book story.
Ricochet is a member of the Enforcers (Fancy Dan) rather than a teen vigilante (or originally Spidey himself) like in the comics.
Tintin: In the comic strip album Cigars of the Pharaoh, when Tintin drives two people to the insane asylum, the evil fakir switches the doctor's letter for a forged one that tells the personnel to lock Tintin up instead. In the Ellipse-Nelvana animated version, the doctor himself is revealed to be one of the masked villain councilmen and is implied to have written the "bad" letter himself.
Animated actually did this to the character Waspinator from Beast Wars. While Beast Wars Waspinator is portrayed as the lovable Butt-Monkey who does nothing but get kicked around by other characters (though he does manage to injure the occasional Maximal, usually not by accident), Animated Waspinator, now renamed Wasp, is downright terrifying, and wants to get revenge on everyone who abused him.
For some odd reason, Wolverine and the X-Men is FULL of this (possibly some of these characters would have returned as heroes had the second season been made):
Domino is a member of the X-Force and X-Men in the comics, but is depicted as a terrorist and member of the Brotherhood of Mutants in the show, basically becoming Mystique in all but name and powers as Mystique herself is The Dragon to Magneto.
Multiple Man is a member of Mr. Sinister's Marauders, despite being a main character in X-Factor since the 90's.
Likewise, the Stepford Cuckoos are shown as villainous members of the Hellfire Club, despite being students at the Xavier Institute in the comics.
Mercury, another member of the Acolytes, was a member of the New X-Men in the comics.
In the comics, Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver abandoned Magneto very quickly and joined The Avengers. In the show, Quicksilver is still a member of the Brotherhood, while Scarlet Witch is loyal to her dad. It isn't until the finale that she finally realizes what a monster Magneto is and turns against him.
Mags himself: in the comics, he's a Well-Intentioned Extremist or an Anti-Hero depending on the decade. He was last wa-ha-ha evil in The '70s, and the last time he was an enemy was done in such an Out-of-Character Moment that it was Retconned into being someone else immediately, making a 1993 storyline the last time we saw him as anything but his normal portrayal (half the team wants to trust him, the other half says "yeah, but you don't know how bad he was when he was bad," and his Wild Card moments don't make anybody any more comfortable.) and it's not like nobody provoked him then. WATXM Magneto appears to be similar to comic Magneto at first but at heart is as monstrous as it gets, more like his sixties/Morrison/Ultimate incarnations.
Emma Frost. Like Mags, she used to be one hell of a foe (even being Big Bad of New Mutants for a time) but comic fans know that that was a long time ago, at least in the main Marvel Universe. In this one she's The Mole and still the White Queen of the Hellfire Club. However, in the finale she sacrifices her life to contain the Phoenix.
The Phoenix. This is far from the first adaptation to do so, but it's worth mentioning that in the comics, Jean as Phoenix was good but Anti-Hero-ish, had to resist darker impulses but stayed in control (she was actually Phoenix for quite some time), and even saved the universe. It took the Hellfire Club's interference to cause her to become Dark Phoenix. This version uses The Theme Park Version where the Phoenix is a 100% Bad Thing. Of course, the Hellfire Club was trying to control the Phoenix in this version, but it wasn't quite the same as Jason Wyngarde and Emma Frost putting her under More Than Mind Control and pretty much breaking down her self-control bit by bit until we get a monster.
Colossus and Gambit were members of Magneto's Acolytes, despite being actual members of the X-Men in the comics. They eventually pulled a Heel–Face Turn and were seen as part of the team in the epilogue. That said, Colossus is only a member of the Acolytes because Magneto is threatening his family.
Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch are only in the Brotherhood in the comics because Magneto saved him and they felt they owed him, leaving upon realizing how horrible he truly was. In the show, Pietro is a bit of a sociopath and Wanda suffers from a number of mental issues.
In what could be called the villainous equivalent of the Iron Patriot in Iron Man 3, Ivanhoe: The King's Knight features the role of the Black Knight as a disguise of villains Prince John and his champion Brian de Bois-Guilbert in contrast to the novel where it was the disguise of the heroic King Richard I.