If a Mary Sue
is "perfect", then the easiest way to avoid making one is to do the opposite, right? Well, the Anti-Sue
shows up when an aspiring writer takes the opposite of "perfect" as "perfectly opposite" instead of "imperfect". A Mary Sue
is a Friend to All Living Things
who is So Beautiful, It's A Curse
and can solve any problem in five minutes or less? Then an Anti-Sue
will be The Grotesque
and an Enemy to All Living Things
who never does anything right
. And so on.
Unfortunately, simply inverting
the Common Mary Sue Traits
does not prevent a character from being a Mary Sue
. When other characters still worship her and the plot still bends over backwards to facilitate her, she's still a Mary Sue
, despite now being described as an unspeakably ugly and incredibly pathetic loser. This can actually be even more annoying than a vanilla Mary Sue
— at least it makes some sort of sense for characters to worship a beautiful, friendly, hypercompetent Mary Sue
, but when they're physically ugly with an unpleasant personality and can barely tie their own shoes (much less solve other people's problems) and everyone still treats them like the greatest thing since sliced bread, Willing Suspension of Disbelief
gets smashed into tiny little pieces. (And yet, this is sometimes Oscar Bait
for movies about the Inspirationally Disadvantaged
Compare and contrast Suetiful All Along
, a less extreme attempt to avert Common Mary Sue Traits
. Also contrast Jerk Sue
. Not to be confused with "Auntie Sue".
No examples, please; this just explains the term.