Playing With / Heel Realization

Basic Trope: A villain realizes that they are the bad guy.
  • Straight: Bob is an Evil Overlord who realizes that in the process of taking over the world, he's brought death and suffering to millions of people.
  • Exaggerated: Bob is a God of Evil who realizes that in the process of causing The End of the World as We Know It, it's brought death and suffering to millions of people.
  • Downplayed: Bob is the Jerk Jock who realizes that his bullying was hurting people.
  • Justified: Bob started as a Well-Intentioned Extremist who believed that Utopia Justifies the Means, and honestly believed until now that he was doing the right thing.
  • Inverted:
  • Subverted: Bob sees all the pain he's caused, but it only makes him surer that it's all for the greater good.
  • Double Subverted: Bob realizes that his original goals were evil, but his essentially unpleasant nature means that his activities in the service of "good" are just as vicious.
  • Parodied: Bob accidentally forgets to feed his pet cat, Muffins. He has a nervous breakdown as a result.
  • Zig Zagged: Bob sees the pain he's caused and finally realizes he's evil. He decides he doesn't care, and stays evil for a while. But then he goes too far and realizes he's even more evil than he thought he was and decides to change.
  • Averted:
  • Enforced: "We'll want to redeem Bob eventually. He should have a crisis of conscience about being a villain."
  • Lampshaded: "Your undead armies have swept across the land killing everyone in their path! Of course you're the villain!"
  • Invoked: Casey gives Bob a well placed Kirk Summation in order to make him see the error of his ways.
  • Exploited: Alice gives Bob a "Break Them by Talking" lecture that opens his eyes, and uses the moment of distraction to kill him for his crimes.
  • Defied: Bob is a Knight Templar who will never see himself in the wrong no matter how much damage he causes.
  • Discussed: ???
  • Conversed: ???
  • Deconstructed:
  • Reconstructed: Bob's such a sorry wreck that a few people, including Charlie, take pity on him and let him take the first major steps toward being reformed. Bob spends some time as The Atoner, and is finally forgiven eventually.
  • Played For Drama:

Back to Heel Realization
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