Playing With / Hero Antagonist

Basic Trope: An antagonist whose motivations and methods are genuinely good and heroic.
  • Straight: Officer Alice is a likable, noble By-the-Book Cop who believes that the main character, Bob, is a criminal who needs to be arrested and brought to justice.
  • Exaggerated: Bob is a psychotic Villain Protagonist, and Officer Alice is Incorruptible Pure Pureness.
  • Downplayed: While Bob is not that bad, and Alice not so good herself, it's made clear Alice is the better one.
  • Justified:
    • The world is full of shades of gray; Alice is just a particularly decent member of the opposing team.
    • Alice is a Wrong Genre Savvy character who thinks that she's a pure hero and that Bob's a pure villain.
    • Alice blames Bob for the string of murderers that have been happening because Bob used to be a serial killer before becoming The Atoner.
  • Inverted:
  • Subverted:
    • Officer Alice seems to be pursuing Bob for perfectly legitimate reasons, but she's actually a Dirty Cop.
    • Alice is a example of The Bait the Dog
  • Double Subverted: It later turns out she isn't dirty. Maybe a bit rough at times, but she's still fighting for a noble cause.
  • Parodied: Alice is such a loveable Wide-Eyed Idealist that Bob feels bad about having to trounce her every time, and usually lets her get a token victory here or there.
  • Zig Zagged: Alice is a very complex character; she has enough Pet the Dog moments to make it clear she's not evil, but she occasionally does things that could be seen as either Shoot the Dog or Kick the Dog.
  • Averted: Alice is the antagonist because she's not a nice person.
  • Enforced: Although the work is about a Gentleman Thief, the writers didn't want to offend the police, and so made their side sympathetic.
  • Lampshaded: "Me and Alice could have been good friends if we weren't on completely different sides."
  • Invoked: "Don't make yourself out to be Robin Hood, Bob. You're a thief. You steal from innocent, hard-working people like it's some sort of game, and now you want to pretend I'm the bad guy for trying to bring you in? The hell with that. I'm a cop. I'm here to protect people from assholes like you."
  • Exploited: Bob likes being evil anyway, so he's more than happy that Alice is around to play a good foil.
  • Defied: "So you wanna cast me in that light, Bob? Then I'll be glad to play that role, if it means stopping you." Alice proceeds to kidnap Bob's pregnant wife and loyal canine friend.
  • Discussed: "Ya know, Charlie, even though Alice tries to stop me every time I make a big heist, I don't think she's so bad. At least, she's no worse as a person than you or me."
  • Conversed: "Ever get the feeling we're cheering for the wrong guy?"
  • Deconstructed: The fact that his nemesis is such a good person makes Bob question what he's doing. He eventually abandons his lifestyle and turns himself in.
  • Reconstructed: Bob enjoys what he does, or firmly believes it is absolutely necessary. He tries to entice Alice to join his side at every opportunity, and goes out of his way to avoid hurting her, but in the end, they're just two people fighting for what's right...even if it means fighting each other.
  • Plot Foundation: This is meant to generate sympathy for people on both sides of the conflict, and to play up the fight itself, rather than the characters, as tragic.

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