Playing With: Straw Nihilist
aka: Nietzsche Wannabe
Basic Trope: An extremely nihilistic character, oftentimes a villain.
Back to Straw Nihilist.
- Straight: The Philosophical Recurring Traveler Hermann keeps ranting on about how the world is cold and miserable and we can as well start murdering each other for all it's worth.
- Exaggerated: Hermann is the Anthropomorphic Personification of hate, chaos and despair.
- Downplayed: While he isn't antagonistic about it, Hermann refuses to delight himself in believing idealism, morality, justice, hope, love, friendship, etc.
- It's a Crapsack World and/or Cosmic Horror Story.
- Hermann had a horrible childhood, no wonder he became a Straw Nihilist.
- Hermann was a former Wide-Eyed Idealist. You know what happened.
- Hermann was a Butt Monkey. What do you expect?
- Hermann has read too many cynical works while thinking too much about how idealistic premises are easily deconstructed, and he begins to see parallels between those that he read and reality.
- Herman is a true sociopath, with just the right amount of narcissism to make him want to start ranting.
- Hermann is an Anti Nihilist who firmly believes in The Power of Love and that Rousseau Was Right.
- Hermann believes that the world is a cold and uncaring place, that humans are basically vicious animals, and that God is uncaring at best... and this is why we need RULES, to turn this wilderness into a civilization, to put the beast known as Man on a leash, and to deliver the justice God will not!
- Hermann is nihilistic in a paradoxical way. He always claims that there is a higher meaning and a reason for existence but because of that higher meaning he views the current life and existence to be worthless.
- Hermann is an ‹bermensch who has developed his own morality from events that might have left others empty, and learns from his own experience and way of thinking.
- Hermann is stated to be a big fan of Nietzsche's philosophy - but then it's revealed he actually read his works and did research. So he's not really a nihilist, merely a pessimist.
- Hermann is a nihilist, but doesn't feel the need to rant about it unless goaded and generally lives a completely normal life.
- Double Subverted: This is not revealed to the heroes, though. Hermann acts like a nihilist when around them simply because he's a bit of a jerk, and does not like them.
- Parodied: Hermann hates the world because he lost a toy train.
- Zig Zagged:
- The author needed a character to be a nihilist, with a heavy cultural backbone, so he made him a Nietzsche follower. Only, the author doesn't care to read anything about Nietzsche, so the character's beliefs vary at every needs of the story. Wildly.
- Hermann is said to be a nihilist... but what he says he lets others interpret how they wish, no matter what he says. This means to some he is a Straw Nihilist, to others The Cynic, and to some a Knight in Sour Armor or The Anti-Nihilist.
- There are no nihilistic villains around.
- There's a real ‹bermensch around.
- Hermann is a nihilist, but simply believes that there's no true purpose to life, feeling instead each person should find their own.
- Enforced: Author includes Nietzsche and Nihilism only to prove or disprove some points.
- "That guy sounds like he tries to rip off good ol' Friedrich Nietzsche... and fails at it."
- "He sounds like Schopenhauer."
- Invoked: "I know I'm a pessimist, but I don't want to be called an emo. I'll read this Nietzsche's work to give myself some more mature credit"
- Exploited: The creator begins marketing shirts with Herman's lines on them to edgy teenagers.
- "Hermann's wrong, if the world was as bad as he says it is, there wouldn't be people like us around."
- Herman is a Nihilist, but he knows not to waste his breath ranting to people he knows he's not going to convince.
- Discussed: "Mr Villain gloated about his plans to wipe half of humanity. Let's see if he's the real thing, or just a deluded Straw Nihilist."
- Conversed: "Straw Nihilists. I hate those guys." "How come?" "Well, first and foremost - Nietzsche does not work that way. They just give him a bad name."
- Deconstructed: Rant-prone nihilists like Hermann are just as pathetic, if not even more, than the "wide-eyed idealists" they're constantly debunking and bullying, sometimes with their speeches being just a projection of their own self-hatred, depression and death seeking tendencies on the idealists. Sure the nihilists are smarter and/or more savvy, and are wise to know that it's a Crapsack World, but they waste their philosophical intellect on fauxlosophic wangst and being assholes, instead of making something actually useful.
- Reconstructed: He finds renewed motivation in life through trying to prove to everyone that "Silly Rabbit, Idealism Is for Kids!". The strong motivation makes him a less pathetic villain than an ordinary Omnicidal Maniac, while he himself, through finding more motivations in life, is gradually transformed into The ‹bermensch- all while holding a grim dark nihilistic philosophy.
Back to Straw Nihilist.