Playing With: Black and Gray Morality
Basic Trope: The heroes are morally ambiguous whereas the villains are unquestionably evil.
Back to Black and Gray Morality.
- Straight: The heroes are pragmatic, zealous, vindictive, cynical, and unsympathetic, but they are nothing compared to the sociopathic, irredeemable villains.
- Exaggerated: The heroes are just as, if not more, bloodthirsty and sadistic as the villains, who cross the Moral Event Horizon 24/7. In short, they're Unscrupulous Heroes.
- The heroes may be good, but they are often rude, abusive, and unforgiving. The villains are not just as cruel as the heroes, but worse.
- The heroes may be nice for the most part, but they can prove to be just as ruthless as the villains when necessary.
- The heroes are Jerks With A Heart Of Gold while the villains are mere Jerkasses.
- The heroes have experienced many unfortunate events in their personal lives which have caused them to behave very badly.
- The heroes realize that their kindness and idealism are free passes for villains to continue doing evil, so they seriously took drastic measures in making sure the unrepentant villains are dead, even if some are really trying to change.
- The heroes are living in a Crapsack World where it's difficult and unnecessary to be nice guys when the crime rate and other immoral practices are increasing rapidly, and they need to stop it once and for all.
- The heroes have moral standards that are incomprehensible and questionable to anyone, be it the villains, or the audience.
- They did what they had to do.
- Inverted: White and Grey Morality.
- Subverted: It would seem that the heroes are cynical and unfriendly, but after a talk with the most purest hero, Bob, they all become idealistic and benevolent...
- Double Subverted: ... They eventually suffered a bad case of Aesop Amnesia but they're still not as bad as the villains.
- Zig Zagged: ???
- Enforced: The author disregards pure heroes and wants to write story about flawed heroes.
- Lampshaded: "There are no goody-goody-two-shoes in this world. It's just these guys fighting against our oppressors."
- Invoked: Bob feels that being a pure hero is boring him to death, so he decides to change his look and attitude.
- Exploited: ???
- Defied: The heroes follow a strict moral code and avoid breaking it at all costs.
- "It feels unsafe to be protected by these heroes just as much as it feels unsafe to be harmed by the villains."
- "It's the battle of the douchebag factions! One is slightly less scummy than the other..."
- Conversed: "Why does this show have the heroes who are fighting against the villains as a bunch of douchebags?"
- Deconstructed: The heroes defeated the villains, but this didn't stop them from keeping humanity in line through their harsh and strict laws. Because of this, the citizens feel they would rather have been killed by the villains than to be oppressed by these "good guys".
- Reconstructed: A good person is capable of doing bad or cruel things, justified or not, and even if others don't agree with it, it's more preferable than purely evil people running rampant in the world.
- Played For Laughs: The heroes are Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonists who the fans still adore none the less because they stand against the villains.
- Played For Drama: The more the heroes fight off evil, the more vicious and sadistic they have become. Now the world is infested by vile and heinous villains fighting each other until death.
Back to Black and Gray Morality.