Quotes: Character Derailment

Creators

We had seen Lennier sacrifice his well-being and almost die to save Peter Jurasik's character, who was the epitome of a Nazi war criminal at the time. So we'd seen that this noble character would sacrifice his life for any lifeform. Jump ahead to the Fifth Season: Lennier sees Sheridan in this life-or-death situation (but if you pull back in wide and look at that shot, there's also a fellow Ranger in that tunnel) ...And, y'know. He chooses to let this fellow Ranger and Sheridan die. —And then he changes his mind like a wimp and goes to undo it, and it's too late 'cause Sheridan's already gotten himself out of the mess, and then he turns to the Dark Side and goes off and banishes himself like a whiny wimp. I wasn't happy with the end.
Bill Mumy on his role in Babylon 5

The ending that had initially been created I was fairly comfortable with. But the head of the studio suggested some revisions on the ending. What do you do? I wasnít as happy with the revisions, but itís not my show, you have to sort of adjust, even if sometimes it does seem a bit of a contradiction in terms for what your character is supposed to be about.
John Billingsly on Star Trek: Enterprise, "Dear Doctor"

On Friends, Joey was a womanizer, but we enjoyed his exploits. He was a solid friend, a guy you knew you could count on. Joey was deconstructed to be a guy who couldn't get a job, couldn't ask a girl out. He became a pathetic, mopey character. I felt he was moving in the wrong direction, but I was not heard.
Kevin S. Bright on the reason behind Joey's cancellation.

I was strongly against it! I donít think WCW understood what the mask meant to me, to my fans and to my family. It was a very bad move on their behalf. The fans wanted Rey Mysterio with the mask and losing it hurt me a lot. It was also frustrating that it didnít come as the climax to a feud with another masked wrestler, but in a throwaway match. I think the fans understand that I was in a position where I had no option. I either had to lose my mask or lose my job.

On works

See, after six years of a series that was explicitly about refusing to kill, rejecting the very idea because she had personal knowledge of what it meant, Cassandra shows up in Robin leading the League of Assassins and talking about how itís time to kill people.

As you might expect, this did not sit very well with fans.

It happened during Adam Beechen and Freddie E. Williams IIís run, and they were pretty much immediately reviled for it, and not without reason...It ended up all being retconned as Cassandra getting dosed with mind-control serum by Deathstroke (ugh), which is about as sloppy a reset button as you could ask for, and actually ended up making the whole thing seem worse, even if it made it very easy to gloss over and forget. But still, the damage had been done.
Chris Sims, "The Strange Case of Cassandra Cain"

How does this happen?! It's as if someone just completely rewrote your characteristics for the sake of creating pointless drama, regardless of everything you've ever said or did before this point!

We cut away from Duncanís mopefest to see Methos. Donít cheer — Methos, one of the most likable and charismatic characters in the series, is a complete asshole throughout this movie. In fact, thereís another guy who wanted this film to be something good: Peter Wingfield actually cried when given the chance to reprise his role as Methos. Or maybe he cried when he read the script — I know I would have.
The Screamsheet on Highlander: The Source

The major change, of course, is that Lois has a child and is engaged to another man, Richard White. But, for the purposes of this movie, all that pales in comparison to the fact that she also wrote an article for an article called 'Why The World Doesnít Need Superman.' Which is pretty much just played off as something she wrote because she was mad Superman left without saying goodbye. So thatís two characters undermined in one scene! Three, if you count Jimmy Olsen being a jerk and eating Clarkís Welcome Back cake.
ComicsAlliance on Superman Returns

The core of the problem was the decision to put so many eggs in one basket. Nobody has ever really offered a clear explanation for why Nathan-Turner decided that Colin Bakerís debut should be moved up to the end of Season 21 instead of the start of Season 22. Itís a strange idea, particularly in contrast to how Davison was introduced. With Davison they went out of their way to give him three stories to practice before his debut so that heíd know where he was going with the character. Now, with Colin Baker, who, while not the crap actor heís belittled as by some, is not as good as Peter Davison, they dump him in the role with less prep time and expect his first time out of the gate to set the tone of the character for nine months... I donít really think 'make your lead character unlikable' was ever going to be a winning strategy — 'make your character unlikable and then put yourself in a situation where the first impression matters more than ever to the success of your show' is an idea that almost weaponizes stupidity.
Phil Sandifer on "The Twin Dilemma"

In his best selling book, Have a Nice Day: A Tale of Blood and Sweatsocks, Mick Foley went into great detail about how WCW butchered his career over and over again. He went into great detail about a series of skits known as 'Lost in Cleveland', which has in turn led to many requests for it to be covered here at WrestleCrap.

I vaguely remembered the skits. And now that I in the midst of recapping them, I wish that vague recollection is still all I had. And Iím sure Mick feels exactly the same.

I can see what they saw in him. They choose a Guy to put their momentum behind; to be The Guy who carries them into the next era, so to speak. John Cena's been The Guy. So they're hoping to find their next Guy. Roman Reigns (they're hoping) is their Guy. You can tell.

I don't think it's gonna happen. He's not The Guy, at least not anymore. It's not gonna take. For one—I hate to say he's not good enough, because they've taken worse wrestlers and made them The Guy—they've done such a bad job presenting him, I don't think they can fix it. Uh...They fucked it up.
Noah Antwiler on Road to Wrestlemania 2015

"Rise" is about as useful to Tuvok as the British were to Hitler in the Second World War, a complete spanner in the works of his development and taking him in a direction he has already flirted with and sinking him. Heís ridiculously stubborn, sneeringly superior and uses his rank almost as an expression of his ego. Sometimes it is necessary to step outside the box but Tuvok is so rule and logic bound he cannot see beyond the end of his own nose. When he chastises Neelix for keeping everybodyís spirits high the Talaxian should have cuffed him around the face ...It's enough to make you want to shove him out of the Tether and see if he really is emotionless or will scream on the way down.

'Annoying character' goes to T'Pol, continuing B&B's theme of character assassination of their own creations. You'd think they were trying to burn the show down for the insurance money.
SFDebris on Rick Berman and Brannon Braga, "Bounty"

Chloe literally does a complete 360 in this scene and tells Clark to lemming himself. Bwah? Watching this exchange again I couldn't stop giggling as I pictured Clark as a suicidal jumper and Chloe as the talking down point person.

Clark: Um, you know what; I might not actually be as depressed as I thought I was. I think I might just come back inside.
Chloe: Have you thought that through, Clark? You know all your problems will still be there when you come inside, shouldn't you just...you know? (Makes swooshing hand gesture)
Clark: Uh, no, you know, I think the fresh air was just what I needed so if you could...
Chloe: JUST JUMP WOULD YOU?! My (expletive deleted) contract is up for negotiations!
Clark: Yarghhhhh! (Clark "falls" off the building and looks somewhat like Jesus)

Why is Chloe, who just last week was lamenting how much she was expected to give up in order to fulfill her duties as Watchtower, so adamant that Clark sacrifice himself for the greater good? If I were Clark I would look for better friends next season.
Julian Finn on Smallville, "Salvation"

Patty and Selma hate Homer, and who could blame them? (Would you want your baby sister married to him?) But theyíve always been fond, even proud, of Lisa. Here theyíre basically saying to Marge: you married a fat loser and so will your precious daughter, ha ha. They want Lisa to marry someone like Homer just to teach Marge a lesson or something, and itís utterly contrary to everything we know about them.
Zombie Simpsons on The Simpsons, "Luca$"