Belkar: So, I did what I always do — murder people horribly — but because I killed the people everyone else wanted me to kill, I get presents instead of prison time? Roy: Uh, well, it's a lot more complicated than that, but — Belkar: HA HA HA HA HA HA! It's working! It's WORKING, SUCKERS!
The Heroic Comedic Sociopath is a very special sort of comic relief who works toward a positive, morally affirming goal whilst being as evil as possible along the way. He differs from most Anti-Hero archetypes in that he's never ineffectual or angsty — he loves what he does for a living. His punishment, at worst, is that he may be on the receiving end of some Comedic Sociopathy. Far more often he's dealing out Comedic Sociopathy and Crossing the Line Twice. (Note that it is not always a "he", but female Heroic Sociopaths are rarer.)
A Heroic Comedic Sociopath can and will eat the souls of jaywalkers, swindle old ladies, detonate buildings, punt puppies into traffic, and steal candy from babies all in broad daylight with a hundred witnesses present. The Karma Houdini is a natural part of his being — it's simply too hilarious to let him get away with it. Being cranked up to the top and played for laughs as he is, the Heroic Comedic Sociopath is so fun and invincible that the audience naturally cheers for him and his wacky antics. At the same time, he may serve as Wish Fulfillment: a fantasy for the audience. Some who have wanted to give the boss what they deserve can wish they were like the Heroic Comedic Sociopath.
At this point you may be wondering why the "good" characters in the story put up with him. Sometimes, it's because while he may be a monster, he's their monster. Sometimes the other heroes have protection from the Heroic Comedic Sociopath's hijinks — it might be a Restraining Bolt, or the fact that the heroes combined can stand up to him. Failing that, they may be in some way endearing to him. Or possibly the Heroic Comedic Sociopath just finds the heroes amusing enough to see the advantage of not pestering them too much, or may just find it more fun to target the bad guys instead. Other times, they don't have that luxury and are stuck with an "ally" as disruptive to them as to their enemies.
Compare Sociopathic Hero, for when this kind of behavior is not Played for Laughs. See also Token Evil Teammate and Poisonous Friend. Heroic Comedic Sociopaths are either Nominal Heroes or Villain Protagonists.
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From Soul Eater, we have Dr. Franken Stein, the "greatest meister to ever graduate from the DWMA." He was also Spirit's meister for many years, and would do experiments on him in his sleep every night. Spirit never suspected anything, simply wondering why new scars would show up on his body every morning. One day, another girl at school found out and told Spirit, who left Stein and partnered with her. She also bore his child. Many years later, Stein was asked to return to the DWMA as a teacher, and gained an apprentice. Her name was Maka, The Hero and a Badass Bookworm. She also happened to be Spirit's daughter. Upon their first meeting, Stein talked about replacing her skin with sandpaper, while complaining about Maka's mother who "stole [his] test subject". This was just the first day.
Kogarashi from Kamen no Maid Guy is a seven-foot musclebound monster of a maid (and a male one, at that) with a permanent Slasher Smile, more wacky superpowers than you can shake a stick at (including 37 senses), an extremely perverted and sadistic streak and with absolutely no respect whatsoever for his erstwhile "master" — the only way his master keeps him under control is by frequent beatings in the skull with a nail bat, which is only effective for a few minutes at a time.
Bleach has Mayuri Kurotsuchi, a psychotic Mad Scientist, and Kenpachi Zaraki, an equally psychotic Blood Knight. While they're both Played for Drama upon their first appearances (though Kenpachi considerably less, given his complete lack of direction and the Running Gag that he keeps looking for heroes to fight but gets lost), their villainous qualities quickly become Played for Laughs once they turn face. Especially Kenpachi, who came to be treated as almost a friend of Ichigo despite nothing at all about his personality changing. Then again, Kenpachi sees no contradiction in being somebody's friend and wanting to have a duel to the death with them.
Main Character Jokyuu of AIKI counts as one of these as well, being a violent, womanizing, alienating son of a shepherd. Just look what he says, all in the presence of the rest of the cast, all female, who proceed to get freaking pissed (but everybody's crazy in this manga).
Jokyuu: Friends is what you call someone who likes to be someone else's minion isn't it? I don't need such things as friends! I mean, I don't have any friends to begin with.
Adam Blade, a foul-mouthed, perverted, borderline pedophile and extremely arrogant Cloudcuckoolander priest with an extremely rare and overpowered fragment. Adam could probably unite the Black Spot under his rule if he had chosen to, but considers it too much work. Just about all of the carnage he inflicts, both on his enemies and his erstwhile 'allies', is treated as light comedy unless he's fighting a particularly monstrous opponent.
To a lesser degree, Eve also counts for this trope, but she seems more scatter-brained and oblivious and not to mention gets beaten a lot more than Adam does.
Kitsu Chiri eventually got the role due to Characterization Marches On, and frequently snaps and murders (or is implied to murder) the extremely non-killable cast or attempts crazy stunts like splitting the Earth in half, taking over Sengoku-era Japan by killing everyone, or playing 'meat doll'. It gets so bad that when Chiri's attempt at 'surprising' the teacher ends up demolishing a wall and flattening all the desks in the classroom (and Ushio), everyone points out that this kind of behaviour is not very 'surprising' coming from her.
Another example is (possibly) Kafuka, whose role as being a living horror is mostly Played for Laughs.
Slayers: Lina Inverse. In the comedic parts of the series she has accidentally released a dragon onto a village and refused to help the village until paid for her services as well as rescue a captive from pirates... then sell her (a fishwoman) to a chef for money.
Thorkell The Tall from Vinland Saga. Imagine a good-natured and enthusiastic Man Child who literally bubbles with joie de vivre and throws himself into life with single-minded glee and delight. Good. Now, imagine him as an eight-foot-tall viking, Dual Wieldingaxes, who lives for fighting people and really isn't particular about who he picks a fight with as long as they've got the promise of a good fight in them. You have Thorkell. Other people in the series comments on how easily likeable he is for a man prone to Chronic Backstabbing Disorder, pillaging, scaring the water out of people merely by getting psyched, and who casually smashes the skull of one of his own subordinates for mocking a Worthy Opponent of his. It should be noted he started out as a Psycho for Hire, only to join the main characters when he realized the Big Bad would be funnier to fight.
Hamel from Violinist of Hameln is a pretty stunning example. From the very first pages, we see him playing a violin to call some birds nearby... and kill them by brutally bashing them with his huge violin. He always charge extorbitant amounts for his monster-fighting services (turning an entire small town into his personal playground/harem to settle their debt at one point), has no qualms selling his prospective love interest into slavery or abusing her and his other friends in hilarious ways to make money, and you don't want to know about how he treats his enemies... He gets kinder after a certain plot development, but gets subverted almost immediately when he's shown making steaks out of a smiling cow he just rode on happily...
The pirate crew and surrounding characters in the manhwa Aron's Absurd Armada practically run on this; they have very little regard for one another, with every explicit mention of "friendship" or "comradeship" by one party (it was the reason they stayed with them for so long, it's the reason he's sticking his ass out to save him, and so on) being flippantly struck down by the other party with 95 to 100% sincerity in the next panel, and yet through some twisted form of True Companions they still stick together and might possibly somehow even like one another in a way. It's largely due to the fault of their humongous Fatal Flaws, whether it be money/treasure (for Robin), rich boy frivolousness (for Aron), or misanthropy/genius (for Ronnie), etc. The only character by the end of volume one who's shown to have regular amounts of human compassion is Anton (and maybe the sushi chef, but mostly Anton), but his lone tendency to care in a manhwa full of Heroic Comedic Sociopaths usually doesn't turn out well for him at all.
Ross of Senyuu., who's on the side of the hero, Alba, and has even saved more people than him in really cool ways (to Alba's mute shock), will nonetheless do things like: stab him with a dagger and tell him in a very shoujo finger-fiddly Tsundere-ish manner that he bought the dagger just to stab him with it, poison the hero's coffee in the morning and leave him to pay for it because it's "his hobby" (cue shoujo sparkles), give a huge (31-34) Psychotic Smirk in answer to Alba's misfortunes, and fantasize happily in the previously mentioned shoujo sparkling manner at the thought of Alba being hunted down as a fugitive after escaping jail for harboring the Token Mini-Moe Demon King at his side, among other things. He'll screw around with every other guy he comes across if the opportunity presents itself, too, to the point that one characters has to ask, "Is he a demon?" as if he (said character) isn't the actual demon there.
Nyarko from Haiyore! Nyarko-sandoesn't understand the meaning of the word "mercy". The second Mook she fights in the first episode learns this the hard way, as she beats it to death with a rock (off-screen) and comes away covered in its blood, as she does when she rips apart the third Mook with her crowbar. On top of that, she's perfectly willing to break the very laws she's supposed to be protecting (namely, smuggling goods off the planet), justifying it by saying "It's only a crime if you get caught". This all gets lampshaded by Mahiro, who responds to this behavior by remarking that most of the time she looks a hell of a lot more like a criminal than a policewoman.
Many of the members of the Squadron Supreme in Supreme Power, though mostly Zarda. She kills with particular glee, and has secret desires for global domination.
Johnny: On a crowded street, I could drain a flower vendor of all his blood, and not get caught! People would scream and vomit, and yet, somehow, I would walk away unscathed. I could do that!... Oh, wait... I did do that!
Sam & Max: Freelance Police, in most of their media appearances, are a Heroic Comedic Sociopath duo. The dynamic being that Max is much more sociopathic than Sam, who is mostly of the "apathetic towards anyone I don't personally know" variety. Sam basically keeps Max from blowing up the world by being several times larger than him. Also, did we mention that Max is the President of the United States, following the decapitation of the robot that the previous president turned out to be?
The Space Marine from the Doom comic. He may be batshit insane and enjoying his job way too much, but he is fighting demons from hell and is a human space marine. The intentional Played for Laughs aspect is debatable, in that nobody is entirely sure if the comic was meant to be serious or not, but he's definitively 'funny' either way.
The Blazing Skull of the New Invaders used to be a pacifist. He doesn't exactly remember what that means, but anything with the word 'fist' in it can't be all bad.
Sebastion O. from the comics of same name is a complete dandy and more interested in filling the void of a dull life (and getting revenge on the people who put him in Bedlam) than any form of kindness. Also one of his best friends is a pederast.
Princess Lucinda, of her own comic and the second volume of Witch Girls Adventures, on those occasions when she's not being played as an outright Villain Protagonist. Yes, she actually is being played for laughs, despite what some might tell you — the Witch Girls franchise has tended toward Black Comedy.
Several main characters of Sin City can come across as this, especially Marv: A lot of the quite horrible things he performs with his usual boyish enthusiasm seems to be played for (somewhat reluctant) laughs.
As a Freelance Peackeeping Agent, Death's Head often falls into this role. He doesn't really care who his targets are as long as he gets paid, yet by various coincidences only the truly deserving end up dead.
The scarab from Blue Beetle is quick to propose the murder of whatever obstacle Jaime has to deal with. Jaime eventually influences it enough to give it a full Heel-Face Turn, but that doesn't stop it from occasionally proposing solutions so overkill that they have "theological implications."
The Creeper is basically a heroic version of The Joker. There have even been instances where the latter found him too unstable.
Transformers: More than Meets the Eye: Whirl, and to a lesser extend Brainstorm. Whirl's a violent crazy Autobot voted twice the most likely to defect. In the first issue he gives an passionate thank you speech... to a group of corpses he's been mutilating. Casually mentions that he wants to be filmed "killing things for the greater good" and after that, the film maker states that Whirl punched himself in the face to prove he's super invincible. When he almost causes an explosion to detonate half the ship, his only question is which half? Brainstorm makes a hobby of making the most destructive and unethical weapons he can to piss off the ethic committee. In the series proper he's a quirky inventor who jokes about a weapon that made a sun go out once, and also cracks a joke when he finds one of his comrades fused into a Generator and dead.
Dogbert, Dilbert. A great deal of what Scott Adams wishes he could say or do ends up in Dogbert's actions. Specifically, the part he can't say "for fear of retribution".
The Hunter in With Strings Attached. Though he considers himself "good", he constantly brags to the four about all the people he's killed and the destruction he's wrought. They find him completely repellent. Until The Power of Friendship (not of them to him but amongst themselves) causes him to reexamine his life and ultimately have a Heel-Face Turn. They're actually quite surprised to hear that he doesn't consider himself or his BFS evil.
The Mask in his film and cartoon incarnations is an id-dominated maniac who is liable to act on everything that Stanley Ipkiss represses and it's all Played for Laughs. He also isn't actually that villainous when compared to the actual villains of said film and cartoon. His comics incarnation, meanwhile, is a pure-up Villain Protagonist. It also helps that so many of the characters who get picked on by The Mask are Asshole Victims. In fact, in the movie it often seems as if Edge City is swarming with all kinds of pests, weirdos, bullies, and all-around Jerkasses whose only purpose in life is to drive Stanley to impossible levels of madness and inspire him to wreak creatively ghoulish destruction as The Mask. Fittingly enough, it is eventually revealed that the title mask is an Old Norse archaeological find in which is trapped part of the power of Loki, God of Mischief. Among Stanley's outrageous actions as The Mask in the film:
Folding a balloon into a tommy gun and chasing off some (unarmed) muggers with it (by firing wildly into the air).
Lancelot from Monty Python and the Holy Grail. When he receives a note via arrow that someone is being forced to marry against their will, he rushes to the poor (presumed) princess' aid... and slaughters not only every unresisting guard in his way, but about half of the party guests as well, including brides' maids and elderly folks. Afterwards, he sincerely apologizes for the misunderstanding.
Frank D'Arbo, the protagonist of Super, has a case of hyper-morality after being told by God himself to bring justice to the streets of his neighborhood. Inspired by comics, he assumes the superhero alter ego Crimson Bolt and uses a wrench to smash the faces of not only criminals, but people who push in queues, all For Great Justice. His sidekick, the self-named Boltie, is another, even more extreme version of this.
Although the description of the trope refers to wicked characters, Tom Cruise's protagonist Roy Milner in Knight and Day still comes across this way despite having elements of The Cape. He racks up a massive amount of property damage over the course of the film and a body count to match while maintaining a totally nonchalant attitude as a humorous contract. At one point, the villains try to persuade the heroine that Roy is actually a psychopathic pathological liar, and that is a surprisingly believable explanation. The effect is helped by Meta Casting / Reality Subtext which thinks of Cruise as mentally unstable. For a representative exchange:
June: The pilots are dead? Miller: Shot. June: Shot... By who? Miller: Uh, me. Actually, I shot the first pilot... he shot the second pilot accidentally. It's just... one of those things. (later) Miller: I'm going to go talk to the men in the tunnel. (beat) Actually, I'm just gonna shoot them.
Junior in Problem Child, a Bad To The Bone seven year old who ruins the lives of those who wronged him even the slightest. In the third movie his victims are left severely injured and are mummified in bandages.
Yulia Latynina's sci-fi political thriller Insider gives us Kissur The White Falcon, imperial favourite, former prime minister, supreme tactician and feudal overlord of the Aloms. He is also a reckless madman that spends most of the book either committing or threatening to commit acts of over the top violence. In the first chapter, for instance, he drives around recklessly at night, slams his car into the first other car he finds and mugs the recently arrived protagonist. Twice. Just for fun. He befriends the protagonist out of respect for him actually fighting back on the next day. It gets better and better through the novel. In the words of another character, "If [Kissur] sees a house that is on fire, he'll rush inside to save the baby; if he sees a house that isn't on fire, he'll set fire to it."
Viruk from David Gemmell's Echoes of the Great Song. Viruk takes great pleasure from fighting and killing his enemies. He believes that the Source (God) talks to him and orders him to kill people. He is described as being very changeable as a person; he kills a convoy of raiders and their caravan drivers and finally decides to let one live. Later on in the book he kills a king and is about to kill the man's bodyguards when he sees some flowers nearby and becomes distracted. Near the end of the book, when all of the remaining Avatars go on a death charge against their enemies, everyone is grim and determined; however, when it switches to Viruk's point of view, it shows that he is in ecstasy and truly enjoying the brutal fighting.
He later goes down in legend as the god of war and spring/nature.
The Acts of Caine: Caine of Garthan Hold skirts the line of this. Well, maybe dances on it. Okay, he does a full soft-shoe number up and down with Broadway routines and a full stage orchestra in the background.
Jeeves of Jeeves and Wooster constantly throws people—especially his employer—under the bus in order to further his Zany Schemes. Since most of the said schemes ultimately benefit the people involved, he gets away with it.
Lockhart Flawse of Tom Sharpe's The Throwback cheerfully committed a wide variety of immoral and illegal acts in order to kick out the residents of a housing development his wife inherited so that he could hike up the rent.
Spike is this in season 4 and part of season 5 — his Restraining Bolt meant that helping the good guys was the only way he could get his Blood Knight kicks.
Anya couldn't act on any of it (at least until mid-season six), but she openly missed the days when she could solve her problems by eviscerating people. She and Spike ended up drowning their sorrows together more than once.
Anya: I'd kill for [R.J]!
Willow: You'd kill for a chocolate bar.
The Colbert Report once did a segment that more or less showed a repo man as one: he jokes that his job is more or less stealing the cars of people that are in debt, and is pretty damn happy about it.
Jayne Cobb from Firefly does this a lot, as he manages to knock some decent giggles out of the audience by being an amoral, violent and intimidating bastard.
Jayne: Hell, I'll kill a man in a fair fight... or if I think he's gonna start a fair fight, or if he bothers me, or if there's a woman, or if I'm gettin' paid - mostly only when I'm gettin' paid.
Nathan from Misfits certainly borders on this. Other characters do occasionally suggest that he probably has some kind of mental illness (usually when they're trying to explain his bizarre behavior to baffled and offended strangers) but it's still played exclusively for laughs. In fact, everybody from Misfits can be classified as this since they constantly kill people(in one specific episode more then a dozen at once) and with one or two exceptions this never seems to bother them all that much
Stuart Jones, one of the two leads in the UK version of Queer as Folk. He's much more of a bastard than a hero really, but every now and then he does something so outrageous and awesome you can't completely hate him.
The eponymous Sherlock Holmes of the BBC's Sherlock, despite solving crimes and catching murderers, is actually more interested in the intellectual challenge that his cases present than helping anyone. And while Sherlock's manipulative, callous nature turns out to be something of a front, it's still played for laughs in nearly every episode.
Molly Hooper: I was wondering if you’d like to have coffee?
Sherlock: Black, two sugars please. I’ll be upstairs.
[Sherlock leaves the room]
Molly Hooper: ...Okay.
On "Leverage" Parker is this, stealing from random people out of boredom and without really concern over their possessions. She does start to become more caring as the series goes on however.
One of the later episodes in the series has an exchange where Parker is genuinely surprised when someone explained to her that pushing other people off buildings without any warning is in fact, Not OK, and that the screaming and flailing wasn't just them playing along with the joke.
The eponymous protagonist from House. He goes out of his way to humiliate and torture co-workers and patients and seems to get off on it. Said sociopathy is Played for Laughs, but is surprisingly effective at producing results and usually well-intentioned.
Barney Stinson from How I Met Your Mother has been this, and he's not afraid to admit it, sometimes even being proud of these tendencies. Lilly has elements of this, also.
Frasier: Bebe likes to portray herself as this. When Frasier fires her in "Roz's Turn":
Bebe: That's it, is it? I'm not virtuous enough for you, not noble. Fine, quit! Next time you need a deal made, call the Dalai Lama. A long time ago, I had to make a choice between being a good agent and a good person, because trust me, you can't be both! So forgive me if I don't have time to make everybody warm and fuzzy. I am just too busy spending every waking minute pouring any drink, pulling any shameless tricks I can to make my clients' dreams come true! I AM A STARMAKER!
Dirk Gently: Dirk treats everyone around him like dirt and it's hilarious. At one point, he goes so far as to give the wrong address to a pizza place in the hope of getting it free because it's late. He also has a fine line in lying to the police and going through the pockets of the dead.
Red and Ted from Red & Ted's Road Show, who travel cross-country in their bulldozer, blowing up everything along the way.
Sam & Max: Freelance Police: Same as the comic book version. In Season Two of the games, it's revealed that they even have a wing of Hell dedicated to them. Better yet, you don't even have to be a particularly bad person to get sent there when you die; you just have to have been involved in Sam & Max's shenanigans during or near the time it happens. But remember, everything Max does, is just because Sam "Can't think of a reason not to." In fact, Sam and Max are such impossible a**holes that they once dreamed that they died and went to Heaven, but got kicked out for being too rowdy. That's right: even Jesus can't stand Sam and Max!
Dragon Age II has Hawke, the Player Character, if played with the right mix of Silly/Sarcastic and Aggressive dialogue options and some of the more evil choices (though given the Gray and Grey Morality of the game, it's often unclear which choices are the most "evil").
Henry from Fire Emblem Awakening is this trope taken to the extreme. He's happy and optimistic to the point of complete insanity, and shows zero compassion for other people. Over the course of the game, he tries to raise an army of zombies to kill civilians, offers to kill your entire army, and says that he'll kill anybody who gives him "stupid" orders, like "Don't kill the enemy". One of his battle cries when getting a critical hit is "I'M GOING TO KILL YOU!" in the most happy, cheerful voice possible.
The most blatant example is his Support with Ricken, where he cheerfully talks about his old Plegian friends that you, the player, slaughtered:
Ricken: Henry, it's my job to kill Plegian soldiers... So I have to believe they deserve to die. But now you've reminded me that they aren't faceless blobs with axes. They have friends, and families, and... H-how am I going to fight them if I know that? What if I hesitate?
Henry: You're weird. I don't see the problem here at all.
Henry turns out to be a subversion: a good part of his Character Development is about him actually realising that his moral compass is whacked and trying to take measures to at very least help his friends. While he's still a weirdo and very fond of blood and slaughter, he does come to care fot the Shepherds in his own Henry way, and if he gets married he turns out to be a pretty decent husband and father. In example, another support with Ricken has this exchange:
Ricken: If I were cut down in battle tomorrow, would you just shrug and carry on?
Henry: No! I'd be very sad and angry. And I'd find out who did it, hunt them down, and exact bloody revenge! ...Oh yes. There would be blood.
Thanks to the Karma Meter, your character could be like this or a Straight villain, in the Fable games. An NPC example would be Reaver, the Hero of Skill from Fable II. He's a smug and egotistical pirate who is seen trying three times to immortalize his likeness in art, only to shoot the artist for some slight error in their work, and tricks you into sacrificing your youth (or that of an NPC, if you're playing an evil character) to the Shadow Court in order to prolong his life.
Of those artists that are killed, the first two maybe, maybe deserved it for screwing up the work. The third? It's everyone's favorite photography dude, Barnum, who happily takes the picture and promises to deliver it in three months when it's "developified". Which, according to Reaver, is too long and a murderable offense.
He just becomes a regular Jerkass in III, though. Not lovable at all.
Be reputed to have killed an agent of the papacy by choking him with communion wafers.
And despite all this, if you get him on your side, he's an excellent support character, doing everything he does out of loyalty to his friends and country.
Marisa Kirisame from Touhou, who habitually steals from the mansions of the enemies that she beats up. Despite this, she's still arguably more heroic than fellow protagonist Reimu.
Shantotto of Final Fantasy XI is a good-aligned character, but she has no qualms blasting random poor adventurers with her magic if they irritate her, and she'll deliver her trademark Noblewoman's Laugh after. Carries into her appearance in Dissidia: Final Fantasy where she's far more bloodthirsty than the other characters, but she's just so funny about it.
Gig from Soul Nomad & the World Eaters is a gleefully Omnicidal ex-Psychopomp, responsible for why the game world is set After the End, who spends the game possessing your character. Because Gig has little direct control over your actions, he spends most of the game insulting, tricking and annoying the rest of the party and everyone else you interact with, snarking at your character's motivations and personal history, and repeatedly trying to tempt you to do evil and accept more of his power so he can gain more control of your body. The main character is forced to go along with his because a) he/she can't get rid of Gig as their souls are fused together, and b) Gig is the only being in the world powerful enough to defeat the World Eaters, and letting him possess you grants you access to some of his powers.
Riki from Bangai-O seems to qualify, to an extent. While he has the noble goal of using the title mech to defeat the Cosmo Gang, he doesn't hesitate to blast anyone that stands in his way (no matter how sympathetic they are).
Sergeant Viktor Reznov in the Russian/Soviet campaign of Call of Duty: World at War seems to enjoy killing Germans a little too much. He even twice encouraged the Player Character to kill helpless German soldiers (first was when they surrendered, second was when they lay dying).
Princess Sapphire from Disgaea 3 is one part this and one part Cloudcuckoolander. She's liable to flip out and kill anything she perceives as a 'threat', only to come to her senses the next moment and apologize profusely to the very dead and broken body of her would-be opponent. Her solution to practically ever problem the party comes across is one form or another of 'murder', including the suggestion to 'open Mao's heart'... With a chainsaw. Unlike most examples she usually *means* well, though. For a certain definition of 'well'.
The Saints Row protagonist is somewhat a bit heroic (but still on the looser side of sanity) in the first, considerably even more insane in the sequel, and gets a healthy boost in both categories in the third entry of the series. Anyone who's in the Saints also counts.
Though most GTA protagonists fit the bill for this, Luis Lopez of Grand Theft Auto IV: The Ballad of Gay Tony openly admits to being this. The only people he shows any attachment to are his mother, who he doesn't even particularly like while she frequently shows contempt towards him; his friends, with whom he has probably the healthiest relationship; and his benefactor Tony, who is a father figure to him, but who also uses Luis specifically because the only qualms he has about doing anything are purely practical ones. When asked by Brucie about him having a softer side, Luis replies with a flat "Not really, I like killing people for money."
Trevor, the Token Evil Teammate of the three main protagonists in Grand Theft Auto V is deliberately designed to be a reference to the average GTA player, going through the game as a complete psychopath only in to cause as much mayhem as possible and enjoying it. The real redeeming factor to make him likeable in the eyes of the audience is that he manages to be both hilarious and awesome while doing it.
Fear Effect. Hana, Glas, and Deke are very much in this category. Rain doesn't seem to qualify as one.
The Angry Birds, who laugh while massacring their pig enemies.
When you think about it, Kirby can come across as this. He is an adorable pink puff ball who often has to save the day, but the way he does so is by eating sentient creatures and absorbing their abilities.
In Abobo's Big Adventure, Abobo kills a whole slew of other video game characters, sometimes because they were trying to kill him, sometimes for no reason whatsoever.
The protagonist of the Rance series, the eponymous Rance, is perhaps the worst human being in existence. He owns his own personal slave (when few to no others are shown to do so) that he constantly abuses, has sex with everything in sight that doesn't have a Y chromosome whether they like it or not (though to be fair, he's the protagonist of an eroge series, so sometimes his journey requires him to), and constantly looks for ways to extort money, items, or information from everyone in general. And yet, his actions always somehow seem to have a positive effect on the societies he visits (not that he cares) and it's always Played for Laughs...
To be fair, Sill (the slave in question) and Rance do care for each other, but Rance is terrible at showing it. He is basically just the most tsun and least dere tsundere ever. Rance also actually understands that rape is a terrible thing to do, he just usually doesn't connect it to what he does because in the Rance games Sex Equals Love since he's so good at what he does.
Really, most of the Borderlands 2 main characters (except Maya) would probably count as this trope to one degree or another. Axton is a self-centred Glory Hound with an appealingly high tolerance (not to mention tendency) for 'collateral damage', Zer0 is a sociopathic Blood KnightNinja who only speaks in haiku and misinterprets people with hilarious (and bloody) results, Salvador is a testosterone-addled cackling maniac with a rep sheet taller than he is who thinks killing people is fun, and Gaige is a playable Tiny Tina who blew up one of her classmates and has a pet killer robot. Most of them are only after the vault because they're some variant of bored and can't think of anything better to do.
Richard from Looking for Group is an undead warlock spellcaster of immense power with Cloudcuckoolander tendencies who likes to slaughter innocent peasants and "eat babies". His catchphrase is a variation on a line spoken in this comic: "You all saw it! That orphanage attacked me!" with the burning building in the background. Being undead, he can take normally fatal injuries (as being impaled through the stomach, getting an axe in the forehead or being Too Kinky to Torture) and joke about it, and is capable of destroying anything with his ice and fire spells (at the cost of needing to rest after exerting himself). His "partner" is the naďve elf Cale'Anon Vatay, who wishes to be good and noble (even though elves in his time are feared as brutal and callous after wiping out the last remaining nation of their noble kindred in the past. Richard's excuse for traveling with the other characters is that he "likes killing things" and gets bored easily. Richard treats Cale like an amusing pet, but he "respects his [Cale's] willingness to kill" whenever Cale is confronted with obvious Bad Guys.
It's been said that if they changed LFG's title to "Richard Fucks Shit Up," and was all about Richard and his nonsense, readership would double. Hell, they even made him a musical.
It may explain both Richard's callousness and his popularity that of the group, he seems to be the only one who knows he's playing a game... and anyone who's ever played a video game knows that no sympathy needs to be wasted on NPCs, and the only thing to do is to amuse yourself with them.
Bun-bun, the lop-eared switch-blade-wielding rabbit of Sluggy Freelance. His plans usually fall through, often due to Kiki's screwups, but he almost never suffers any consequences... usually because no-one's brave enough to try punishing him.
He does still kill a lot of people, even innocent people, especially in the early years. Though it's debatable that telemarketers are "innocent".
Walkyverse Abductee Mike Warner, who especially enjoys Halloween: in different years, he's tried to sacrifice Joyce's dog in a Black Mass, dressed up as Saddam Hussein (and putting a fake beard on the same dog he tried kill, calling him 'Osama bin Doggie'), dressed again as the recently deceased head of the Government Conspiracy they worked for, and given out candy with razor blades in it. And that's what he does for fun; he's even worse the rest of the year. He crosses the line so many times that it has become blurred beyond all recognition.
Fuzzy from Sam and Fuzzy. A borderline heroic sociopath who lapses between true sociopathy and The Imp depending on the seriousness of the story arc (the less important the strip is, the more he gets away with).
Recently it's come to light that Fuzzy merely took someone's advice about acting in a certain way. Couple this with his apparent amnesia and there's no telling what behaviors of his are genuine, and what aren't, as even Sam himself has noted.
The title character of Schlock Mercenary. At their worst several other members of Tagon's Toughs would qualify as well, but Schlock is responsible for the lion's share. This is lampshaded by Tagon, who says "Shlock may be a sociopath, but he's our sociopath."
Schlock has been known to refer to his "random act of violence fix for the day".
Bangladesh Dupree. Although technically more of a Psycho for Hire because she works for the antagonist Baron Wulfenbach, Dupree crosses the line over into this trope: The extremely over-the-top acts she inflicts upon the remaining cast with a cheer on her face while cracking jokes about it are played as much for laughs as for horror, and Wulfenbach is both a viewpoint character and an Anti-Villain (and one may wonder how she plans to kill someone with a block of cheese...).
An even clearer example is Castle Heterodyne, a sadistic and sentient building loyal to the Heterodyne family. It gleefully inflicts gruesome acts of violence at anyone nearby at Agatha's command... And occasionally after interpreting an otherwise innocent comment from Agatha as a command... Or simply because Agatha isn't around to tell it not to. Because it thinks it's fun.
Then there are the Jaegers. Their loyalty to House Heterodyne comes first, and (for most of them) their loyalty to the baron comes second, but their third biggest motivation is sheer bloodlust. They are self-proclaimed "killing machines" who regard the evil Heterodynes as "the fun ones". They always charge into battle with great enthusiasm and laugh at the grisly deaths of their enemies. Nevertheless, so long as Lady Heterodyne is on the side of light, so are they, and most effective at it.
"Red" from No Rest for the Wicked. She carries around an ax, enjoys causing fear in the people around her, smells death, and tells little girls her cloak is dyed in blood. Her partner is Princess November, a young naive girl who bruises easily. A very mild form, but still qualifies.
Psycho Mantis from The Last Days of FOXHOUND. The webcomic also gives an excellent insight into the differences between this trope (Mantis) and the Magnificent Bastard (Ocelot) — anyone who tangles with the latter on an intellectual level is going down, but it is hard to engage in intellectual battle when your opponent just sets you on fire with his mind instead.
Most of the characters from Charby the Vampirate fit this trope given how little they value human life (though the titular character eventually decides to stop killing people for the sake of his friendship with resident Badass Longcoat demon hunter Vic, the other characters continue to maim, kill, slaughter and eat whomever the want, whenever they feel like it).
Mal of Head Trip. Her antics include: arson, assault with a deadly weapon, breaking and entering, holding Fox executives at knife point until they agree to give Joss Whedon full artistic control over all future projects, abducting and threatening with torture a writer for lost, giving Jack Thompson a Karmic Death and murdering Sailor Moon. She is likely not joking when she says that Ebert of Ebert and Roper has a restraining order on her. She even has her own demon assigned on a permanent basis to follow her around holding a handbasket.
Rocky from Lackadaisy Cats, while being a fairly well-meaning guy overall, has very little grasp of what's socially acceptable and scares most "normal" cats he talks to. When carrying out rumrunning duties, he is completely unaverse to revenge and forcibly putting other "establishments" out of business... and he does. Oh, and he's a pyromaniac. Yet, his childlike enthusiasm, general clumsiness and ineptitude, and lyrical ability make him pretty endearing to the reader.
Calvin (a.k.a. "Freckle") is probably this trop in training. A quiet, shy fella, he undergoes a complete and psychotic personality change any time he gets his paws on a gun. The end result can involve a lot of bodies (and horror on his part, once he comes back to himself). The story as it stands seems to suggest that he will put this particular "talent" to use, and then his "training" will probably be complete as far as this trope goes.
Kenta Daisuke of No Need for Bushidodoes ultimately have a motive (guess what it is), but it hardly covers all of his gleeful, wanton violence. He leaps at the chance to fight, loves nothing more than to slaughter countless enemies with a grin on his blood-spattered face, obtains all his money by mugging passers-by, and feels no regret whatsoever for harming others. Nor does he seem to understand that his casual violence makes others regard him as somewhat...disagreeable.
Chicanery has Ness, Pokey, Jeff and Mr. Saturn from EarthBound. The gang have saved the world on more than one occasion — but are just as likely to steal, cheat and murder indiscriminately to get what they want.
Skoll of Cry Havoc qualifies. She is a good guy... but only because the people she mutilates and kills are slightly worse, or at least less skilled, than her.
Ethan from Ctrl+ Alt+ Del who consistently has absent-minded daydreams about strange ways to kill or injure his co-worker Rob, a counter-strike playing idiot, and sometimes enacts these daydreams...he also daydreams about killing or injuring customers of the video game store he works at.
Sam, the kleptomaniac, greedy, totally self-centered squid.
Doctor Hubris from The Apple of Discord (and later Apple Valley) is usually responsible for whatever horrible things are going on in the comic, including inventing the technology that created Gayzilla and creating a highly contagious form of "robot cancer". It's been implied several times that he hired Doyle just to kill him, and that the superheroes of Apple Valley classify him as a supervillain. It's even been implied that he is the one who actually broke the barrier separating reality, not Arthur which has been more-or-less confirmed by Word of God.
In Scandinavia and the World, Finland. Drunken, mute, ax-wielding, sniggers-at-your-misfortune Finland. Only Sister Sweden gets the better of him for long.
Ansem Retort: insofar as the protagonists can be called heroes, about half of them qualify. Axel kills people constantly for no reason, and if he's looking at you you'd better hope it's no reason, 'cause he gets brutal when he has actual motive beyond 'likes killing things'. Zexion takes pride in his Jerkass credentials and commits crimes just to prove he can. Red XIII views the whole of humanity as food. And as for Larxene...well, we're not sure what Larxene's deal is apart from huge quantities of drugs and Attention Deficit... Ooh, Shiny!, but she does seem a little too fond of killing things.
Mary Dixon of Joseph And Yusra shoots up robbers with a Slasher Smile on her face, and is perfectly willing to hold her friend hostage on top of a partially constructed building (tied to a chair) and kick her cousin off said building from lethal heights (sure, it was to test their hidden psychic powers, but still).
Milkman Dan from Max Cannon's Red Meat, author-proclaimed "Booze-fueled paragon of pointless cruelty and wanton sadism". Especially noticeable in his repeated pestering of Bratty Half-Pint Karen.
In The Gamers Alliance, the pirate Bashkar, despite working for the Alliance, abuses his allies, openly shows his dislike for elves in increasingly ridiculous ways, actually represents Arawn Losstarotin a council meeting and is willing to betray and kill anyone for a chest full of treasure.
Many Let's Play sessions wind up turning video game protagonists into these, partly to keep it more as an OC. For instance, take Misty of Pokémon Emerald. In her spare time, she apparently enjoys beating things and watching her Pokémon eat smaller ones, and has killed (and eaten) several of her own Pokémon simply because they annoyed her.
Also, in the Pokémon Crystal Let's Play by the same person, it is hinted that she killed Red.
Well, he did save the children... but not the British children. In fact, at one point he goes to save the children from a burning school before he realises it's a British school and proceeds to push the building off a cliff.
A common attribute of Protectors of the Plot Continuum, especially those in the Department of Floaters, the Department of Mary Sues, and the Department of Geological Aberrations. Given that the last two are Assassins and Pyros, and they are all volunteers, this should not be particularly surprising.
Even better is that while Cartman triggers the hunt due to his suspicion of Muslims, the actual terrorists were the British..
Stewie from Family Guy is a fan favorite whose antics are over the top mostly for comedic effect and he has little intent to kill or harm his family save for Lois. Yet it is made clear at varying times he does not always think much of Peter, Chris, or Meg either.
It should be noted that Stewie routinely murders people on and off-screen.
Brian: How would you feel if you killed another baby?
Stewie (offhandedly); I've killed seven...
Stewie has clearly inherited his evil traits from Peter. Peter is not so much a genuine moron and more a moron-themed super villain. He has been shown to murder for fun and profit, commit acts of terrorism and arson and even wipe his boogers on Meg.
She did once erase every living thing from existence except herself but, probably because the Crapsack World the show is set in is so surreal, it didn't last.
A possible case in the Warden from Superjail!. While dedicated to his job and perfecting the art of incarceration, he is AT LEAST a psychopathic sadist the show isn't afraid to play for laughs. Most of the people he ends up killing — generally indirectly — are dangerous inmates who pose a clear threat to society.
Brock Samson from The Venture Bros. is a scientist's bodyguard whose main priority (at least in the beginning) is to brutally murder his enemies while having sex with as many women as possible. His college football career (and scholarship) ended when he accidentally killed another player, so he joined the army. He wound up as a government agent with his own license to kill, which he's been known to take advantage of if a bartender makes fun of his mullet.
Also Rusty, from the same show. While not as bloodthirsty as Brock, he isn't above screwing over friends, family, or innocent bystanders just to gain the most minor of conveniences. Not to mention his Joy Can, a virtual reality simulator powered by an orphan's heart!
Captain Hero from Drawn Together is ostensibly a superhero, but has almost no regard for human life whatsoever (although he may simply be too stupid to know what he's doing). An example of his sociopathy is throwing an entire planet (which happens to be his home planet) and everything living on it into a star to prove he's "heroic".
And his clever use of human shields.
Captain Hero One! Billions of Innocent Zeblonians... um... dead. Oh. I uh... (Slinks away)
Ling Ling, the Pikachu spoof from the same show is initially portrayed as this as well; a murderous sociopath who wants to kill and destroy everyone he encounters in hilariously brutal manners, but later becomes a frequent Chew Toy/Butt Monkey (given the nature of the show, this could apply to anybody, though).
It takes on a whole new dimension when one episode reveals that among his people, battles to the death are an allegory for sex, complete with one-night stands and unsatisfied opponents faking it.
In The Boondocks, Ed Wuncler III and Gin Rummy are two sociopathic veteran soldiers who constantly drink, curse, and rob stores yet get away with their idiotic plans due to Wuncler's extremely rich father having the police on his payroll.
Riley is a sociopath-in-training. Naturally he gets away with anything his gurus do, but he could incite a riot and get a mere slap across the crown for cursing too much.
Korgoth from Korgoth of Barbaria is basically a combination of Conan the Barbarian and Brock Samson. He is an apathetic and anti-social badass with an insatiable appetite for sex and violence in the most graphic degree. In just the first fight of the pilot episode, he tears off a man's arm and beats him to death with it, chops a man in half down the middle with an axe, and tears off another man's skin, douses him with alcohol, and lights him on fire. For laughs.
It should be noted that very rarely is Dethklok the direct cause of the violence around them, and even when they are, it's not always intentional. Not that they necessarily care about a few thousand casualties, of course. Until it starts to affect their record sales.
And then there's their manager...
In Futurama, Bender is a megalomaniacal robot who is only after his personal stimulation. He is frequently shown stealing just about anything he can get his claws on, as well as indulging in all manner of other crimes and immoral behavior. A recurring joke is his apparent desire to "kill all humans." Depending on the Writer, however, he can also be a Loveable Rogue and/or a Manipulative Bastard.
"I came here with a simple dream... a dream of killing all humans. And this is how it must end? Who's the real 7 billion ton robot monster here? Not I... Not I..."
Killface (real name Evelyn) from Frisky Dingo. His goal for much of the series is to use his Annihilatrix to propel Earth into the sun for no apparent reason, and he kills and mains people at the drop of the hat. In the pilot episode he kills a man and uses the corpse to stage an impromptu ventriloquist act (oblivious to how appallingly lame his jokes are). Watch some choice moments.
And yet he's still more sympathetic than Xander Crews. Proving, forever, that it's better to be a sociopath than a douchebag.
The title character in Assy McGee may very well qualify, being a ultra-violent and remorseless parody of 70's/80's cops that makes Jack Bauer look tame by comparison.
Izzy of Total Drama Island, who not only looks back at the time she BLEW UP A MOUNTIES' CAMP with cheer, but enjoys being hunted down by them!
Possibly Rico from The Penguins of Madagascar. He's described at least once in universe as a "world-class psychopath," and he especially likes blowing stuff up and causing other characters bodily harm. That said, is there anybody out there who doesn't absolutely love Rico? I doubt it.
Skipper too. In less then five minutes he's admitted his dream future involves a post apocalyptic scenario with roving bands of irradiated mutants and then proceeds to help stop a time paradox from erasing existence.
Murdoc Niccals, big time. His rap sheet includes fraud, kidnapping, extortion, Organ Theft, tons and tons of assault and possibly homicide. Despite this, he's still technically a protagonist, and maintains a sizable fanbase as such.
Cesar Salazar of Generator Rex is a subversion of this. He is described as "kooky" and "kinda off" and appears for a while to just be a wacky inventor, but pretty normal otherwise. But as time goes on, he begins to display a marked lack of concern for people (including his own brother) or ethics. It seems he has no moral code of his own, even.
Bugs Bunny alternates between this and a Karmic Trickster. In his earliest shorts he was actually much worse, attacking for no good reason, but Tex Avery and Bob Clampett soon established a moral code for the character that, for the most part, he followed for the next five or six decades.
Dan's entire purpose in life is to exact revenge on anyone or anything he perceives as having wronged him (whether they actually did anything or not). Many of his schemes result in spectacular failure, but when he does succeed, more often than not it turns out that his victims really did have it coming.
Jake the Dog from Adventure Time borders on this. He sometimes comes off as an asshole, holding off on helping Finn (when he really needs it too) just to suit his own needs. But he usually ends up saving the day afterwards.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles has an In-UniverseShow Within a Show example with Captain Ryan, the "hero" of the Star Trek: The Animated Series parody "Space Heroes". He's clearly an utter maniac with no respect for his crew, casually letting his crew die, describing himself as "humane" for opening an airlock and sucking out the noisy Tribble-expies into space, and a rampant womanizer, but he's supposed to be the hero of the show and is played for laughs. Admittedly, the actual audience laughs more at Leonardo, who seems to think Captain Ryan is a good "heroic role model" for himself and never seems to notice his Nominal Hero status.