Draco In Leather Pants / Western Animation

When characters in Western Animation receive the Draco in Leather Pants treatment.

  • Adventure Time:
    • The Ice King receives no end of sympathy from most fans, continually painting him as harmless and misunderstood. While he is a Jerkass Woobie with a Freudian Excuse, he still harasses, stalks, kidnaps, imprisons, mind-controls, and at one point mutilates around a dozen different women, all for the purpose of forcing them to "marry" him.
    • Hunson Abadeer is basically Vampire!Satan, the Lord of Evil who rules the Nightosphere in a perpetual state of chaos and pain, and while he does genuinely love his daughter Marceline that love is by demon standards, and he has no problem with eating the souls of her friends or getting her possessed by an Artifact of Doom. Doesn't stop many fans from painting him as a Bumbling Dad who just wants what's best for his little girl.
    • Ash, Marceline's Jerkass ex-boyfriend, who unlike this previous two is a completely straight example - he's good-looking, and that's his one positive attribute.
    • Even for being a Scrappy character, Lemongrab still has fans. He has a loud fanbase that often forgot just why everyone hates him so much. Even after being revealed he uses his mental illness as an excuse to be a jerkass to everyone (when Lemonjon got Empathy), eating and mutilating his own brother, and finally becoming a corpulent dictator, his fanbase still tries to get everyone to sympathize with him despite revelations showing he doesn't deserve it.
  • Mozenrath from Aladdin: The Series. For many fans, his hotness and him being one of the better written and more threatening villains in the show outweigh the fact that he's sadistic, turned his father-figure into a zombie, devoted his life to ruining Aladdin's, and wants to take over Agrabah just "because it's there". The belief that Mozenrath was intended to be Aladdin's brother seems to be an unfortunate (and persistent) side-effect of this trope.
  • Stelio Kontos, Stan's old bully from American Dad!, has his unpunished bullying overlooked by fans who cheered him beating up Stan who was trying to bully Steve into toughening up and proclaimed him a Memetic Badass with an awesome theme-tune. Let's face it, though, he was the reason Stan engaged in that maliciously idiotic if well-intentioned stunt in the first place, as well as part of his somewhat unfortunate childhood. There may be times to cheer Stan getting taken a peg or two, but this wasn't one of them. Stan only seemed to be proven right in season 8 when Steve was faced with his own bully, and the strategy of pitting him off against Stelio, albeit with the circumstances slightly different due to some unwanted help from Roger, totally backfires, with Steve getting an off-screen beating from both this time. Besides, bullying is no laughing matter.
  • Many Waul/Tanya shippers in the An American Tail fandom tend to get this way, and seem to gloss over the fact Waul tried to kill and eat Tanya's family.
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender:
    • Azula is a callous cruel manipulator who kills without hesitation and gleefully advances the aims of the genocidal Fire Nation, but thanks to being the best example of Evil Is Sexy and Magnificent Bastardry in the show she has a large chunk of fans who insist she's a tragic woobie or just misunderstood. The Grand Finale gives her one hell of a Freudian Excuse and The Search hints that she might be redeemable after all, but the bulk of the DILP treatment started long before this, and it doesn't excuse her actions.
    • Zhao and Ozai get this treatment by Fire Nation fans for Evil Is Cool reasons, but unlike Azula they have no redeeming qualities whatsoever.
    • Sozin gets this treatment quite a bit, another case of his fans focusing on the "well-intentioned" and ignoring the "extremist" aspects of Well-Intentioned Extremist. They see nothing wrong with him wanting to spread the fire nation's glory, power, and advanced civilization with the rest of the world, which apparently justifies 100 years of war, the first act of which after disposing of the only man who could stop him was a complete genocide, and many other genocidal actions to follow.
    • Zuko got this treatment back when he was an Anti-Villain, with many fans saying all his wrong actions can be excused because of his angsty backstory and conflicted nature. Mike and Bryan themselves have brought this up in commentary for episodes such as "The Warriors of Kyoshi" and "The Beach" that, as sympathetic as Zuko is, he's not supposed to be justified in his bad actions, and in fact a big part of his Character Development is learning that he needs to take responsibility for his bad actions. This internal struggle of good and evil, which has still crept up even after his Heel–Face Turn, is kind of the entire point of his character.
    • Recurring character and Well-Intentioned Extremist Jet had a lot of fans rationalizing his act of flooding a village that was filled with civilians to kill a few Fire Nation soldiers (to the point where only a handful seem to remember that it was an Earth Kingdom village under occupation, not a Fire Nation colony), which is missing the point. Even Jet himself later seems to realize he went too far there and that his psychological desire for revenge really overcame his heroic desire to be a freedom fighter, and works to atone for it.
    • Long Feng and his Dai Li are sometimes given this treatment, with their Orwellian methods and repression of Ba Sing Se painted as the act of true patriots who were compelled to do whatever it took to keep their city safe. Case in point.
    • Happens In-Universe in the episode The Ember Island Players. The Gaang watch The Boy in the Iceberg, a play about their adventures performed by the titular Ember Island Players. The play is Fire Nation propaganda, and so it puts the Fire Nation in a much better light than the series does.
      • Play!Azula lacks most of the real Azula's psychopathy and mental instability. She doesn't shoot Iroh in the play's version of The Chase (she instead tells the others to Go Look at the Distraction and escapes through a hidden door), and she keeps her sanity throughout the finale, unlike the real Azula, who had a spectacular breakdown.
      • Play!Ozai still wants to conquer the world and kills Aang in the finale, but he has no plans of genocide and merely uses the comet for a power boost in his fight against Play!Aang.
  • Back at the Barnyard: Dag could be justified by the fact that coyotes have to eat, but did he really have to antagonize that one farm in particular, kill Ben, make Otis feel small, and attack during the day when no one was expecting them?
  • Batman:
  • Kevin 11 from Ben 10, despite being an Ax-Crazy Sociopathic Enfant Terrible, was often this among his fans, even though the show flat-out presented his Freudian Excuse as not being valid enough for his unrepentant villainy.
  • Lahwhinie from the Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers episode "Gadget Goes Hawaiian" is Gadget's Evil Twin. Period. At least in canon. But for some fans, she is Gadget minus her quirks and geek attitude and lack of social skills, but plus a dress and make-up and actual passion, and sometimes have her do a more or less spectacular Heel–Face Turn.
  • Code Lyoko: William's long-term possession by XANA has definitely increased his fanbase, although the emphasis is more on curing him than on loving him for/despite being evil.
  • Father from Codename: Kids Next Door gets some of this, despite being a psychotic child-hating supervillain who brainwashed five kids into thinking they were his own and planned to bake a whole bunch of innocent kids into a cake, but according to his fans he's "just misunderstood". It helps that he has a Freudian Excuse and some pity moments through Villain Decay, plus that there are far, far more unsympathetic villains on the show.
    • The Delightful Children got a lot of this even before their backstory was revealed.
    • Cree gets some of this as well. The hints that she might actually seek reconciliation with her sister - but only if it's on her terms - helps.
  • Danny Phantom:
    • Vlad Masters/Plasmius based his life around revenge for an accident and the title character's father "stealing" his one true love Maddie. He uses deception and mind control to amass his fortune and uses it and his ghost powers to attempt murder and cause mayhem, which he somehow thinks is a good way to get Maddie to fall in love with him and Danny to consider him as a better father than Jack. Yet because all he wants, essentially, is to be loved, numerous fans ignore that he's a selfish, maniacal narcissist.
    • In fact, in a reality where he did get what he wanted, marrying Maddie, he still became a bitter, controlling man, to the point where Maddie threw him into the ghost zone.
    • Ember McLain gets this treatment, mostly for her loss, but some fans think that her song was about her suicide after being cheated on by her Bastard Boyfriend.
  • Mandark from Dexter's Laboratory In the show he's an Evil Genius and the closest this series has to a Big Bad. Try explaining that to fangirls who portray him as a sweet nerdy boy who just wants Dee Dee to love him.
  • The Urpneys from The Dreamstone often maintain a higher popularity than the heroes, due to an excessive Sympathetic P.O.V., their half hearted villainous streak and just being Ineffectual Sympathetic Villains of the highest order. While this has some credibility since they are genuinely forced unwillingly into most schemes (most of which have a very petty motive in early episodes), the narrative usually makes clear they are so out of laziness and cowardice rather than any form of conscience, and usually display an indifferent obedience to Zordrak whenever his ambitions become more menacing, such as trying to destroy the heroes' world or turn them into stone. Even the far more genuinely malicious Zordrak and Urpgor gain sympathy from fans due to their ineffectual qualities.
  • Duck Dodgers: Deconstructed in one episode. There's a villain called the Magnificent Rogue who basically terrorizes people, yet is worshipped because he's so attractive. Even when he flat out admits that he is indeed insane. Porky snaps out of it and ultimately thwarts his plot. IQ also states that being beautiful doesn't give you the right to terrorize people. It could easily be trying to mock this trope.
  • Ed, Edd n Eddy:
    • Eddy gets a lot of this. Fans use his Freudian Excuse involving his brother as a legitimate excuse for how badly he treats his friends and the other kids in the series. This is ignoring the fact that most of Eddy's jerkass behavior is done out of free will, as Eddy sometimes starts unprovoked drama with the main scrappies (Kevin, Sarah, and mostly Jimmy due to his feminine traits). Heck, even Rolf, Jonny, & Nazz, the kids who aren't scrappies, get pushed too far by Eddy sometimes. Yet fans still see Eddy as a victim who does little to nothing wrong to others.
    • May Kanker is often seen as a sympathetic Woobie and the Token Good Teammate of the Kanker sisters (a trio of bullies/molesters and the main villains of the show). True, the way her sisters treat her sometimes puts her on The Woobie territory, but when it comes to other people, she's just as cruel as them. Yet, some people would rather believe she wouldn't hurt a fly and she's just oppressed by Marie and Lee.
    • Her sister Marie, being the prettiest Kanker, usually gets the free pass from fandom, alternatively given a Freudian Excuse, similar to May's example above. Even Lee would get this treatment in fanart, but least often of the three.
  • Norm from The Fairly Oddparents gets this bad. He's often portrayed as The Woobie, locked up in his lamp and was forced to serve several masters like Timmy. This is ignoring the fact that he is a Card Carrying Jerkass and such a Jackass Genie that he was that page's picture. Also, he had tried to sell Timmy (who was originally apathetic toward Norm) on the prospect of having a genie, and the fact that he plans to destroy Canada once he's free should erode his sympathy.
    • Vicky is a destructive, abusive sociopath, but so many of her fans go to incredible lengths to justify or outright ignore these traits. Others simply fabricate a Freudian Excuse for her out of thin air, despite being repeatedly established that she has no such excuse, and indeed is the Freudian Excuse for several other characters, Timmy included. Disturbingly, there are even people who ship her with Timmy.
    • Anti-Cosmo who's Cosmo's evil counter part, has been seen as a fairy who simply wants his own godchild, baring the fact he has made several attempts on conquering or destroying Fairy World and Earth.
  • Family Guy:
    • Stewie tends to get sympathetic treatment in later episodes, largely due to putting up with Brian's selfish egotism and his Comedic Sociopath parents, disregarding the fact that even following his Flanderization, Stewie is often portrayed as a sadist who tries to kill his mother and puts Brian through all sorts of painful stunts for petty slights or even just to see if he can. (eg, giving him two gangster style beatings for overdue gambling fees or travelling in time to sabotage every meaningful point in his life over a gay joke).
    • Lois may qualify. Some of her defenders usually try to excuse her abuse towards Meg by saying that because other characters are cruel to Meg, that justifies her abuse. While it's true that other characters are cruel to Meg, the only reason Lois is vilified for it while Peter isn't is because she is the smarter of the two. Not to mention she's Meg's mother.
  • Hexxus, the Spirit of Destruction and pollution embodied in FernGully: The Last Rainforest gets this even though he's trying to level a rainforest full of plant and animal life as well as sentient fairies that depend on its existence to survive. It doesn't help that the movie is Anvilicious, the protagonists (save maybe for Batty Koda) are bland and rather uninteresting, and Hexxus himself is voiced by Tim Curry, with all the implications this entails. And he gets one of the best Villain Songs of all times.
  • Gargoyles:
    • Demona from is often a victim of this. While the character is definitely a three-dimensional villain, and you understand where she is coming from, a lot of fanfic authors spin this off into either being an apologist or completely re-writing the character to the point where she is Demona in name only. Add in the fact that she's already somewhat sympathetic by design and there you go. Usually, her daughter Angela will either wave a finger in Demona's face, and Demona magically gives up her hatred to have a relationship with her, or Demona magically falls in love with a human and sees that humans are not all bad. A lot of the time, Goliath is portrayed as an evil misogynist. Generally, most of these fanfics are just an excuse to get Demona naked, and some authors have admitted that canon Demona is too difficult to write. Word of God states that Demona will still be plotting against humanity long after Angela and most of the cast are dead.
    • While Xanatos does get a whole slew of Pet the Dog moments and arguably evolves into an Anti-Villain by the end, he still commits a lot of ruthless or downright evil acts (especially early on) and never seriously regrets any of them (except maybe creating Thailog). There are nonetheless a disturbing amount of fans who portray Xanatos as little worse than a brilliant trickster, with more than one declaration that he isn't really evil or villainous. This probably wouldn't happen half as often if he didn't look like a physically-idealized Jonathan Frakes.
    • Rounding out the trifetica of the show's major villains is Macbeth. He's easily the most sympathetic even in canon- he's as tragic as Demona but not a tenth as vicious, and as affable as Xanatos without being nearly as manipulative- and he has an old-school warrior's sense of honor, but his fans have a definite tendency to treat him as a Hero Antagonist, which several of his actions (notably deciding to use Broadway- with whom he had no personal quarrel- as target practice for newly-acquired spells) show he's not. Per Word of God, he's an ends-justify-the-means kind of guy, and his ends are pretty questionable on their own. Character Development, however, does end up moving him into Hero Antagonist territory by the end of the series.
    • The only recurring villains who aren't in some way sympathetic are Tony Dracon and Sevarius, and they sometimes get the DILP treatment.
  • Generator Rex:
    • Van Kleiss, largely because of his Well-Intentioned Extremist claims and the fact that his opposing number White Knight is a jerk.
    • Breach. She isn't without sympathetic qualities, but sometimes people forget that she's completely insane and has happily kidnapped people to use them as toys in her "playhouse," throwing them away when she gets bored of them.
  • Murdoc of the Gorillaz is often seen this way, despite being a canonically alcoholic, exhibitionist, verbally and physically abusive megalomaniac. The trope is even employed in-universe, since despite many of these traits being publicly known, Murdoc does not lack for bedmates.
  • Gravity Falls:
    • Bill Cipher, the Big Bad of the entire series. He is a living embodiment of the Illuminati symbol and he has psychotic behavior but fans love him. He is often drawn as a sexy man with one eye covered and dapper clothes who is sometimes shipped with Dipper or Mabel. Back in "Dreamscaperers," most of his villainous acts technically took place inside dreams, yet he still showed signs of his chaos-loving like whne he telekinetically removed a deer's teeth to creep out Gideon. Fans ignored the warning signs and thought his mysteriousness at the time was hinting at some kind of morally-gray character, beginning to make all kinds of romantic interpretations of him. When the episode "Sock Opera" where he possesses Dipper's body debuted, fans started fawning over "Bipper" and outright calling him sexy even though he tried to kill Mabel. Even when the last quarter of the series makes it blatantly clear that his "strange plan" is to destroy the world for fun, which he partially succeeds at doing (he manages to cause an apocalypse in the town of Gravity Falls, but he's stopped from going further by a barrier), the habit of painting him as some sort of misunderstood good guy persisted to the end of the series and pairing him with the Pines remained some of the most popular ships in the entire fandom.
    • The episode "Soos and the Real Girl" had .GIFfany for its Monster of the Week, who is a sentient Dating Sim character. She is a Yandere who is implied to have killed her developers and tried to kill the people who played her, she also tries to force Soos to upload his brain to her system so they can be together forever. When he refuses to let her upload him, she outright threatens to kill him too. Many people found her cute and sexy and were even attracted to her yandere tendencies since she "proved" she was willing to go a long way for love, even if it meant coercing and abusing the person she "loved." She even gets some of this in-universe: the entry Soos wrote about her in Gravity Falls: Journal 3 has him praising parts of her game after she tried to kill him and saying that she's sweet when she's not trying to kill people, hoping that she wasn't killed in their battle. She wasn't.
  • Happy Tree Friends fandom does this with Evil Flippy, insisting that he's really just misunderstood and needs the "twu wuv" of a Mary Sue, or his good side in order to become an upstanding member of society. Never mind that they've already got Good Flippy to toy with.
  • Hey Arnold!
    • Helga Pataki. In the series she's a Jerkass Woobie with a Hidden Heart of Gold who is horribly neglected by her parents, but who also can be mean, selfish, rude (and even cruel in some instances) does many things moved by jealousy and constantly bullies other kids (not only Arnold). However, despite that, many fanfics (especially romantic fanfics) portray her almost as a saint. This happens mostly because a lot of viewers see themselves in her, a sentiment amplified by her main character status.
    • Curly is pretty much criminally insane, but many fanfics downplay it for various reasons.
  • Invader Zim:
    • According to some of his fans Zim is really a totally badass mastermind. But don't worry, he's not really evil; he would seriously regret destroying humanity, and would probably give it up if a kind-hearted human or Irken girl would just show him some love. Oh, and also, isn't Dib just such a bastard for trying to stop him so much? There's a bit of this for other Irkens too, particularly the Tallests. Apparently galactic conquest and repeated genocide and enslavement of the survivors is a-okay.
    • Gaz. Simply put, she's a selfish, abusive, and greedy brat with absolutely no redeeming qualities, yet many fans praise her as "the smartest character on the show" and call her a no-nonsense badass. This is especially baffling when you consider that not only does she refuse to risk her life for anyone but herself, but that she only goes after people who are much weaker and for petty reasons.
  • Kaeloo: Mr. Cat is portrayed on the show as a psychopath who wouldn't hesitate to kill or maim people for petty reasons, and also is a selfish, greedy, rude, egomaniacal, sarcastic jerkass. In fanon, he is portrayed as much nicer, and some fanworks even portray him as a sweet person who just wants Kaeloo to love him.
  • The Legend of Korra:
    • Amon is the charismatic leader of the Equalists, who just want to bring about equality between benders and non-benders by ending all bending, but have absolutely no problem harming the very people they claim to be helping. Amon's so charismatic that he's managed to convince some of the fans, who rightly point out existing inequalities in Republic City, but tend to gloss over that forcibly stripping people of something the setting treats as intrinsic to one's soul is not a nice thing to do.
    • Tahno, while eventually becoming somewhat sympathetic after Amon takes his bending and leaves him a broken man, had fans wishing he could give them "private lessons" even when he was a total Jerkass.
    • Season 4 gives us Kuvira. She desperately wanted to save the Earth Kingdom from falling into anarchy after The Earth Queen's assassination. To that end, she usurped power from the reigning Prince Wu and reformed the kingdom into the Earth Empire. Like Amon, she is extremely charismatic and can justify her actions with arguments so reasonable that even the heroes begrudgingly agree she has a point. So charismatic is she that even some of the fandom will defend her by saying that she's just doing what she thinks is right, even when it's revealed she is throwing those not of Earth Kingdom decent into labor camps. The fact that the series finale portrays her as a Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds and gives her a Freudian Excuse to further humanize her only reinforced this sentiment.
  • The Loud House: An unusual case where this is applied to the main character of the show itself, Lincoln Loud. Fan-rewrites or Fix Fics of unpopular episodes where Lincoln gets the short end of the stick often portray Lincoln as an innocent victim of the torment of his sisters (who are often given the Ron the Death Eater treatment) who calls them out for their mistreatment of him when in the canon episode(s) Lincoln wasn't entirely blameless or even brought on the torment upon himself. It's especially noticeable in certain re-writes of the widely-disliked episode "No Such Luck", where Lincoln calls out his entire family for treating him like dirt because they thought he was a jinx (sometimes to the point of getting them arrested or otherwise punishing them), even though in the actual episode, Lincoln, like it or not, brought everything bad that happened to him upon himself by making his family believe that he was a jinx solely for his own gain.
  • In Mega Man, RS-Protoman is arguably not as bad as most of the examples on this page, but some fans seem to think that his switching alliances would instantly rid him of his less pleasant traits. (Possibly so they can offload them to their idealized version of RS-Bass).
  • Bradley Nicholson in Milo Murphy's Law, in canon a pompous jerk who is jealous of Milo for the attention his Weirdness Magnet status affords him. Many fans grant him Jerkass Woobie status, interpreting his craving for attention at all costs as a symptom of an inferiority complex, possibly caused by Abusive Parents, depressive tendencies, or both. In this light, his crush on Milo's close friend Melissa Chase renders him especially sympathetic.
  • Scarab from Mummies Alive!. Never mind that he was something like a cross between Mr. Burns and Mumm-Ra; Fan Fic still has him suavely hooking up with Mary Sues and heroes of the show alike. Considering that relatively few people even remember the show, the sheer amount of Slash Fic it generates around an aging Corrupt Corporate Executive who powers up into an insectoid monstrosity is rather disturbing.
  • The Penguins of Madagascar:
    • Rico. Okay, so he's not evil, but he is a loose cannon who needs to be kept under tight control. All that craziness is very often tossed aside in the interests of pairing him up with whichever penguin the author chooses.
    • King Julien. He's not evil, but he is a jerk. Again, it's abandoned for the purposes of bedding him down with Skipper or Marlene. The weird thing is, the movie, while he's not all that nice, he at least is concerned for his subjects, and demonstrates sincere gratitude toward Alex and the others, but is listed under Jerkass. While in the series he's abusive to Mort and Maurice, malicious toward the Penguins for the sake of it, rude in general and self-serving, with his few decent moments usually having at least partially selfish motivation, yet is listed under Jerk with a Heart of Gold, despite his negative qualities far outweighing his arguable positive ones.
  • The Powerpuff Girls:
    • Mojo Jojo is often given a Freudian Excuse for his villainy. He then makes a Heel–Face Turn and everyone just ignores his hundreds of onscreen - much less offscreen - rampages.
    • The Rowdyruff Boys tend to be toned down and glamorized into being misunderstood little boys who secretly long to be loved and in relationships with the Powerpuff Girls, the only ones who can tame them. Series creator Craig McCracken grew so frustrated with this phenomenon that he came to regret bringing the Rowdyruff Boys Back from the Dead and left them out of the series' Ten-Year Anniversary episode out of spite, despite every other major member of the girls' Rogues Gallery appearing.
    • Fans sympathize with Princess wanting to be a Powerpuff Girl and always getting rejected, ignoring how she doesn't have superpowers or crime fighting experience, and only cares about being a Powerpuff Girl for the cosmetic reasons (being popular, powerful, and loved) and that she's rejected for being evil.
    • The Gangreen Gang get this to an extent. Some people in the fandom portray them as these innocent boys whom the world and their families have outcasted for no good reason; and while the show has suggested here and there that the team might have some good in them (like when they helped the girls take down Sedusa, or how they changed sides in the FusionFall game), they're still delinquent, disrespectful teens who vandalize the city and prey on children and the elderly just for kicks.
  • Rick and Morty: Rick Sanchez, one of the title characters of the show, is typically an asshole of many calibers. He's a drunk, selfish and reckless, even if he can get him and his grandson Morty out of sticky situations (though he's the one that normally put them in said situations). Every once in a while though, Rick seems to have a moment of character development, and fans forget that he's an asshole. Even if immediately after the moment of character development, he reverts back to his normal asshole-ish self.
  • Samurai Jack:
    • Subverted with the Daughters of Aku. They gained a lot of sympathy from the fans who saw them as tragic villains who've had no choice over their own fate in spite of their ruthlessness and lack of empathy. Then, during a climactic fight, Ashi more-or-less states that they never had a choice of what they would do with their lives from the day they were born when confronting her mother, indicating that the sympathy for these characters was an Intended Audience Reaction.
    • Aku himself. Even for a dog-kicking machine of a character, he has a loud fanbase that sympathize with him for being Made of Evil. He simply CAN'T stop being evil because it's in his very nature to be evil. The fact that some fans saw his death as a Tear Jerker moment of the series only cemented this status, since his death marks the end to an iconic Cartoon Network's villain many grew up with. Of course, this is ignoring that Aku is a depraved tyrant who has an incredibly long list of crimes and atrocities. Some fans even consider him as Ugly Cute or Creepy Cute, largely due to his somewhat simplistic design.
    • The High Priestess herself is this for some. In fact, there's a theory circulating in the Fridge Horror page about the possibility that she was raised just like her daughters were.
  • The Simpsons has Sideshow Bob. While his intelligence, menacing aura, and highbrow/Deadpan Snarker attitude combined with the perpetual clown-like mishaps to which he's subjected make him a cool and funny villain, there is a considerable fanbase determined to overlook that his life revolves around murdering Bart and those who stand in the way of his murdering Bart, instead making him into an angster hiding his suffering under an antisocial exterior. Extra annoying in that they overlook the canonical explanation for any angst (his being Krusty the Klown's Butt-Monkey for years), instead giving him a depressingly cliched tragic backstory.
  • The South Park fandom does this a lot, especially with characters like Cartman, who once tricked a kid into eating his parents, and Damien, who set Pip on fire and turned Kenny into a duck-billed platypus.
  • Plankton in Spongebob Squarepants. It has been established that he's evil as he continued to try to take Krabs' secret formula in myriad ways. One episode even had him as a Jerk with a Heart of Jerk with him saying "Being evil is just too much fun!" He's also been shown to be a big Jerkass with all his screaming and being angry. In The Movie, he had definitely crossed the Moral Event Horizon. But due to Flanderization and Took a Level in Jerkass on the parts of the main characters in the later seasons, some fans sided with Plankton, forgetting all the evil and nasty stuff he did in the earlier seasons. It sometimes seems that the writers forgot all the evil and nasty stuff he did in earlier seasons. Plankton's evil schemes once involved him trying to Take Over the World, but in later episodes all he wants to do is compete with the Krusty Krab. Not even destroy them or run them out of business, just compete. And unlike Krabs, he's never tried to torment someone into committing suicide and laugh about it.
  • Star Wars: The Clone Wars has some. Since Darth Maul was brought back in the fourth season, he has fans (as seen with the films). General Grievous, although he's a cold-blooded cyborg who killed hundreds of people receives this in spades. Young!Boba Fett also gets this, though in fairness, he's portrayed during his appearances as a sympathetic character.
  • Steven Universe:
    • While Lapis Lazuli is a Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds, her fans continually ignore how, among other things, she stole the world's oceans and nearly killed Steven and Connie, portraying her as a tragic victim of everyone else's cruelty. She's not an outright villain, but she's definitely more complex than most of the fandom acts like she is.
    • Jasper is cocky and downright cruel, nearly ordering the death of all the Crystal Gems before she realizes Steven has Rose's gem, and later forces Lapis to fuse with her in a style very similar to sexual assault. The fandom is more than eager to excuse her actions or outright ignore them to make her a fluffier character and put her into romantic ships with the characters she kept as prisoners.
    • Completing the trifecta, Peridot is at best a Punch-Clock Villain with no concern for the suffering and death her actions will cause, but some of her fans claim that she's an innocent in all this and unaware of the true extent of Kindergarten and the forced fusion experiments. While this view is closest to the truth (Peridot is even revealed to essentially be a child who only appears older with limb enhancers), it can still be unnecessarily exaggerated.
    • Strangely, these views seems to be endorsed by Steven himself, who consistently takes a generous view on their actions. He dismisses insults to Lapis as "She was just trying to find her way home," and has to be actively reminded several times ( prior to her Heel–Face Turn) that Peridot is their enemy. The closest he ever comes to acknowledging a Homeworld Gem doing a bad thing is when he calls Jasper "mean," and the closest he comes to acknowledging a human doing a bad thing is his opinion on Kevin. It's perhaps worth noting that Steven's trusting attitude seems to bear a great deal of fruit, with both Lapis and Peridot regarding him as their friend, and most of their more positive actions being done for him.
  • While Superjail! has a cast filled with characters that are corrupt or despicable to some degree, there are a few examples that tend to stand out when it comes to this:
    • Some tend to ignore the fact that while Alice has a bit of an unfortunate backstory, she's also described by the creators as a sadistic bully who intentionally abuses her power to get herself pleasure from the inmates. Any of her flaws can get easily glossed over for her to be simplified and painted as a saintly Woobie who just needs one good man (when fans aren't going in the other direction to demonize her for not returning Warden's feelings).
    • Lord Stingray gets a bunch of this treatment from certain fans, who feel as if he's been unfairly wronged and misunderstood for being imprisoned in Superjail. Some decide to depict him as physically attractive in order to play up suaveness to make him a viable partner for the Warden, if they don't go with outright Foe Yay.
    • The Twins are sometimes simplified into harmless innocent young men who just want to have fun in the jail, even though they're shown to take visible amusement in causing death and destruction. Sure, they start trouble to relieve boredom, but they aren't any less questionable in their morality than the rest of the cast.
  • Dr. Viper in SWAT Kats has a few fans despite being arguably the series' most sick, twisted and sadistic villain in his very first episode alone, and not being what would generally be considered attractive (even before he got mutated). Many early fanfics by one "Kikki Viper" revolved around the evil biochemist converting to Christianity, gaining a magical sword and saving the day. The fanfics have been given the MST treatment by many a SWAT Kats fan. Artist Ignigeno sexifies Viper while at least retaining his evil, sadistic personality.
  • Agent Bishop from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2003). Compared to the Shredder, he's a much more sympathetic and well intentioned villain, however while an undeniably a complex villain a lot of fans definitely romanticise him a little too much, especially considering the countless acts of murder, espionage, torture, and other dirty dealings that come close to, if not outright rival, the Shredder's. By the sixth season, set decades into the future, Bishop does renounce his evil ways to become one of the good guys, so he's not an entirely unsympathetic or irredeemable character. However, he achieved DILP status far before "Fast Forward" and there are still a disturbingly large amount of fans who prefer to sweep all his evil deeds under the rug and act as if he's nothing more than a heroic savior of the world with no flaws.
  • Teen Titans:
    • Slade, whose intelligence, competency and "cool" factor results in many fans ignoring the fact that he's a mind-raping adult who takes pride in stalking and fighting teenagers.
    • There's a subset of fans who think Terra should have been welcomed back with open arms and accepted as a permanent member of the team even after her stint as The Mole and The Dragon to Slade. They argue that none of it was her fault since Slade manipulated her (Terra herself makes this argument, but Beast Boy points out that she could have gotten out at any time but chose not too, and Terra ends up redeeming herself by accepting this and taking responsibility). She's a sympathetic Anti-Hero/Anti-Villain Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds to be sure, but to paint her as a blameless martyr is to miss the point of her character (of course, so's painting her as an irredeemable fiend like certain other fans like to do).
  • Tygra from ThunderCats (2011), the reboot of the 1985 series. While he does have his share of redeeming qualities, is one of the good guys, and is confirmed by the creators to be a Jerkass Woobie instead of a tamed version of Big Brother Bully, a lot of his fan are a bit too willing to forgive him for and justify him leaving his adopted brother, Lion-O, to die twice, being somewhat of an unapologetic bigot, undermining Lion-O's authority and not supporting him on occasions.
  • Tom and Jerry. While Tom is something of an Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain, fans have taken to downplaying Tom’s flaws completely and treat Jerry as if he's the bad guy in all their altercations. The truth is that neither one is by any means innocent, being victim and provoker in almost equal measure, but Tom just gets the DILP pass because the writers worked so hard to depict that Jerry (who, at the time at least, automatically got audience sympathy by not being Tom) wasn't, and that they let Tom win a lot of times he genuinely deserved it.
  • Total Drama:
    • Duncan. It's invariably difficult to keep him in character seeing as his softer side overrules his bad-boy charm in the eyes of most fans. If you find a fanfic involving Duncan/Courtney, Duncan/Gwen, Duncan/anybody expect Draco in Leather Pants to come into play. (Although, those that ship him with Gwen do have some justified argument, she is the only one he is rather nice to.)
    • Gwen and Courtney also have this problem. Some fans on different sides of the CxDxG conflict believe the girl they support is blameless while demonizing the opposing character.
    • Most of the villains get this treatment. There are some fans who will portray Scott as kinder for the sake of someone, and even Mal is portrayed as having a shred of goodness in him in some fanon, despite being essentially the embodiment of chaotic evil.
    • Ezekiel is occasionally written as a sad, down-on-his-luck, poor woobie who doesn't actually want to be in the game, and gets a lot of flack from other characters who never forgive him for the comments back in the first season saying that guys are better than girls. By season three, and hinted at since the post-elimination special of the first season, it's clear that he's actually incredibly arrogant and there are more reasons for people to not like him becides his comments (which nobody really brings up to him). Seeing as he clings on to the jumbo jet after being thrown off and willingly stays there until becoming feral, it's also obvious that wanting to leave the game is something he would never do. And yet the innocent, pull-toque-over-his-eyes Ezekiel is still present after all of this, probably because the creator's attempts to make Ezekiel come off as a Jerkass with a huge ego backfired in his fan's eyes due to how little screentime he got.
  • Transformers:
    • Decepticons as a whole can be called Robots in Leather Pants. It's about a 50/50 split and Deceptifans tend to downplay their villainy a lot. Notable examples include Starscream, Ravage (especially after his upgrade in Beast Wars), BW Rampage, Animated, Starscream, Lockdown, Megatron, and more of Starscream. Megs tends to be viewed as a misunderstood anarchist, a la Axel Rose, and even inversions where Optimus Prime is depicted as a self-righteous fascist are not entirely unheard of.
    • It started with Beast Wars; technically, the Predacons are an oppressed minority on a "peaceful" Cybertron kept in the paranoid grip of the just-as-atrocious Maximal Elders, but their role is more akin to between-World Wars Germany, with Megatron and his troupe attempting to get them to put on the Reich. Like the Animated Decepticons, this goes unnoticed by fans, blinded by Beast!Megatron's Magnificent Bastardry, Tarantulas' delightful craziness, Waspinator's Butt-Monkey-ness...
    • The Transformers Armada incarnation of Starscream is pretty much entirely remembered for the period he defected to the Autobots. Based on how people talk about it, you'd think it happened in the first episode and he served the good guys with honorable conviction, as opposed to lasting a total of three episodes where his entire motivation was that he wanted to kill his boss and he thought it'd be more convenient to do so with allies. He does make a somewhat more genuine Heel–Face Turn towards the end of the series, and even a Heroic Sacrifice, but even then, he was hardly the "hero on the wrong side" many refer to him as. Fans of the character also tend to toss his later Energon and Cybertron appearances, where he was completely evil, into Fanon Discontinuity.
    • Transformers Animated deepened this. The Decepticons in this series are in some ways oppressed resistance fighters trying to overthrow a regime that is outdated at best and downright corrupt at worst, but they're less "Rebel Alliance" and more "Al Qaeda". Fans tend to miss this part because Megatron is awesome, Blitzwing is funny, and Starscream is, well, Starscream.
    • Transformers Prime has Knock Out, who even has some men in the audience wishing they could drive a car like that. On YouTube, he's also been turned into a sex symbol, despite being a total narcissist.
      • Starscream's usual Draco in Leather Pants treatment is taken Up to Eleven in Prime. Because of his skinny physique and how badly he tends to get punished, fans are quick to paint him as a Jerkass Woobie and some even write Hurt Comfort Fics that ship him with his Arch-Enemy Arcee, glossing over the many dogs he's kicked; said dog-kicking includes killing Cliffjumper and throwing his death in the other Autobots' faces whenever he can, threatening Miko in front of an immobile Bulkhead, and taunting a T-cog-less Bumblebee about his inability to transform while holding said T-cog at gunpoint right in front of him.
  • One-shot villain Madame Catastrophe from Tuff Puppy is often hit with this trope, usually being brainwashed instead of evil.
  • In the old Voltron cartoon, many girls adored the self-proclaimed evil Prince Lotor, despite his attempts not only to kidnap Princess Allura, kill the Voltron Force and raze her planet to a pile of ash, but also (and repeatedly) to force her into marriage, brainwash her, or commit various other despicable acts; he has never shown an ounce of remorse for any of this. Many fans will attempt to argue that he was forced to do this by his father, even though he hatched and enjoyed half these plans, and though he continued making them after he usurped his father. Others will say it's all out of love for Allura, even though he was willing to throw her away for another princess that looked just like her.
  • The Brotherhood of Mutants in X-Men: Evolution. Though they were portrayed somewhat sympathetically, and shown at times to be manipulated, they still were jerks that often caused lots of trouble. Their numerous fans usually defend anything Avalanche, Quicksilver, and Toad do and consider the X-Men to be the real villains. The most extreme example is Quicksilver; while Avalanche and Toad showed that they had some good in them, Quicksilver was a borderline sociopath who had little concern for anyone but himself.
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http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/DracoInLeatherPants/WesternAnimation