"As many people have noted throughout the years though, Disney has been rather...lax when it comes to adapting books and fairy tales into movies. This is understandable in some cases. Still, it can be a bit galling when one knows that the fire-breathing, demonic witch on the screen was a kindly old lady in the source material."The villain of an adaptation or retelling of a story is a familiar character who wasn't as bad in the source material. Sure, they may have been annoying at times, or couldn't care less about the good guys, but they weren't evil. Maybe they were even an ally of the main characters who leaned a little too far on the evil side, or a villain with standards or who was known to show a softer side. Maybe the character rubbed the heroes the wrong way, but never caused any real harm and was otherwise a decent person. In any case, the character seriously Took a Level in Jerkass in the P.O.V. Sequel, The Movie, The Film of the Book, or any other reimagining of the original material. Where he was simply a pest before (and never treated as anything worse than that), or even nice, he now kicks puppies for fun. This trope can take several forms, depending on the adaptation and the character. The True Neutral figure is actively villainous instead of simply not caring or choosing not to get involved. An imposing and potentially dangerous, but ultimately helpful, ally may become an enemy instead. The Anti-Villain and Tragic Villain will probably lose most or all of their sympathetic side and have fewer, if any, nicer moments. The Jerkass companion who is merely contemptible (but still entitled to the same protection as any other non-villain) in the source material will start committing acts in the adaptation that make him an actual enemy. This occasionally happens to characters who were explicitly good guys in the source material, and if it does it's sometimes a Take That to an unpopular one or to make the character Darker and Edgier. See also Character Exaggeration. This is not always a bad thing, however, and indeed some iconic villains have come about in this way, although it will probably lead to accusations of Adaptation Decay or Character Derailment from purists. Unlike Ron the Death Eater, there is usually more justification for the change in the character. Sometimes Adaptational Villainy is a result of Composite Character - the composite mixes the harmless character and a more villainous one - or Adaptation Expansion, when there is no obvious villain in the original work, and a Ghost or another minor character gets the part. Sometimes it's to make the moral lines of an otherwise edgy story more clear or to simplify a complex character. A Perspective Flip often uses this deliberately to subvert the audience's expectations of who the hero and villain are. If the adaptation does well, the darker incarnation of the character may become more popular and eventually overshadow the original. This may happen for a variety of reasons. It's not Adaptational Villainy if an entirely new character is created to be the villain. This trope only applies if the villain in question is recognizable from the original work, but was a more sympathetic or tragic figure, had some form of standards or was less menacing, had sympathetic moments, was strictly neutral, or wasn't evil at all. This trope is Older than Dirt, since this sometimes happened to religious or mythological figures who, over time, became more malicious then they were in the older versions of their myths due to displacement or conquest. The Super Trope to this is Demonization. Compare Everybody Hates Hades, which is this trope applied to certain Dark Is Not Evil gods in mythology, and Historical Villain Upgrade, which is a variant for Real Life figures. Ron the Death Eater happens when a section of a fandom demonizes a character rather than one specific adaptation. Contrast Villain Decay, in which an established villainous character becomes less frightening or villainous over time and isn't taken as seriously by the heroes or the audience as a result, and Took a Level in Jerkass, in which the character becomes more unpleasant canonically, either because of Character Derailment or Character Development. For the inverse where a villain or Anti-Hero is softened in the adaptation, see Adaptational Heroism.
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