After Action, Villain Analysis
"Burns became consumed by greed, he'd steal from anyone . . .
and when he tried to steal our sunlight, he crossed the line from everyday villainy into Cartoonish Supervillainy!"
This is when either an enemy of a major villain, or maybe a minion who turned against them
, explains to others the nature of their conflict
, typically when the villain is not around
, likely after the villain has either been defeated
or is at least temporarily
out of power. An alternative title for this, "explaining the villain explains the conflict," refers to the notion that explaining what happened makes the actions of the villain's enemy or former rival more understandable.
Note that this is not a Motive Rant
; the tone of the conversation will be very calm and gentle despite the subject matter, as indicated by many of the examples...
Compare Kirk Summation
, which is addressed to the actual villain. See also You're Insane!
Not to be confused with How We Got Here
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Anime and Manga
- Bleach has Ichigo deliver one about Aizen.
- Perhaps most famously (if lamely) in the Alfred Hitchcock film, Psycho.
- In The Lion King II: Simba's Pride.
Simba: Scar couldn't let go of his hate, and in the end, it destroyed him.
Kovu: ... I've never heard the story of Scar that way. He truly was a killer.
Simba (while brushing the remains of burned plants): Fire is a killer. Sometimes what's left behind can grow better than the generation before, if given the chance.
- Troy: The Trojan priest says this when they find the beach abandoned. (It's a Trap.)
Plague! Don't get too close, my lord.
King Priam: What happened here?
They desecrated the temple of the gods, and Apollo desecrated their flesh.
They thought they could sack this city in a day. Now look at them... fleeing across the Aegean.
- Chuckles the Clown does this in Toy Story 3 to explain Lotso's turn to evil.
- The film (and comic) version of Sin City has a scene in which Cardinal Roarke explains to Marv why his adopted son ate people and subsequently admitted to joining in.
- Predator (1987).
Mac, to Dillon, describing the encounter with the Predator: Those eyes...disappeared. But I know one thing, Major... (pause) I drew down and fired right at it. Capped-off two hundred rounds and then the Mini-gun; the full pack. Nothin'...nothin' on this earth could have lived...not at that range.
Schaefer: He uses the trees.
- Happens frequently in the Sherlock Holmes stories.
- Also a recurring feature in the work of Agatha Christie as an alternative to a Summation Gathering, with villain exposÚs delivered by Hercule Poirot, Miss Marple or another detective to an assembled group of people after, not before, the villain has been identified and taken into custody, committed suicide, or been killed. This usually happens following a Wham Line, a surprise arrest, or another very sudden and as yet unexplained reveal of the villain.
- Occasionally subverted, when it is revealed that the main villain is actually present in the room, and is not the person who just got taken into custody, died, or played along with the detective so to catch the true culprit off guard. Examples include Cards On The Table and At Bertram's Hotel.
Live Action TV
- In the postgame in Pokemon Platinum, you come across an old man who explains why Cyrus was after a world without emotion. Of course, the old man (probably) doesn't know that you're the one who defeated Cyrus, or even that you ever met him. He's just a grieving grandfather who blames himself for his grandson turning out like that.
- Subverted towards the end of The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time: After Link defeats Ganondorf's first form, Zelda's Crystal Prison slowly moves towards the roof and dissipates, and Zelda looks at Ganondorf's body and says "Ganondorf, pitiful man. Without a strong, righteous mind, he could not control the power of the gods." Then they realize the place is collapsing, that Ganondorf is using his "last breath" to bury Link and Zelda in the remains of the castle...of course, after they escape, it turns out Link has to fight another of Ganondorf's forms, confirming that Zelda's earlier line isn't really an AFTER action villain analysis.
- When she defeats Kefka one final time in Dissidia: Final Fantasy, Terra reflects on his lust for destruction and concludes that he was trying to fill the void left by his broken heart.
- A variant is done in the Ace Attorney trials. While Phoenix pieces together the actions of the guilty party to the court as the trial proceeds, it's usually not until the very end of the trial that all the pieces come together and the full motives of the killer are figured out. One notable case that plays this straight is Case 5-2, in which, following Le'Belle's freak out, Simon Blackquill revives him long enough to get his testimony offscreen. He then reports to the courtroom that Le'Belle's criminal activities were motivated by being bankrupt, something which hadn't been revealed before then (while the goal of Le'Belle was determined, why he did it all exactly was not.
- In the Unlimited Blade Works route of Fate/stay night Shirou analyzes Archer who has already been defeated. He realizes that despite his cynicism and attempts to Ret Gone himself by killing Shirou, Archer never regretted his choices in life, only the consequences he faced after dying. That was why during their last fight Archer did not counter Shirou's final attack.
- In Worm, Villain Protagonist Skitter is analyzed several times in this fashion. Dragon notes her sliding further into acts of villainy and speculates that her past as a bullied teenager has led to a severe distrust of authority, and the government's therapist for superheros, Mrs. Yamada, analyzes her repeatedly and discovers a pattern with her escalating her levels of force in response to threats to her father.
- The Simpsons episode "Who Shot Mr. Burns", quoted above.
- Frequently parodied in The Tick, when the eponymous hero gives one of his Cloudcuckoolander speeches concerning the villain which seldom make any sense.