Quotes: Ignored Epiphany

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    Anime and Manga 

I killed two men. Those were human lives, it won't be overlooked! Besides, who am I to pass judgment on others? ...No. No, wait. Maybe I'm wrong. This is exactly what I've been thinking about lately. This world is rotting, and those who are making it rot deserve to die!
Light Yagami, Death Note

    Comic Books 

The strange thing was, he knew she was right. Without being sure exactly why, he knew he was making the wrong choice. But he dredged up what he needed to keep going. To put one leaden foot in front of the other.

Cassidy: Yeh do it an' yeh're one of the monsters... But yeh know what? Yeh wake up the next mornin' an' yer still alive... Yeh sort yerself out a bit... An' a wee tiny part've yeh starts to believe in a second chance.
Jesse: An' then you do it again.

    Film - Animated 

Po: You gotta let go of that stuff from the past cause it just doesn't matter. The only thing that matters is what you choose to be now.
Lord Shen: You're right. Then I choose THIS!! (draws knives and attacks)

Every once in a while, I sit down with myself asking,
"Onceler! Why are you a Onceler?"
And I cringe, I don't smile, as I sit there on trial asking,
"Aren't you ashamed, you old Onceler?
You ought to be locked in hoosegow, you should!
The things that you do are completely un-good!"
"Yeah? But if I didn't do them, then someone else would!"
"That's a very good point, Mr. Onceler."
The Lorax (1972 adaptation)

The things you say just might be true.
It might be time to start anew.
And maybe change my point of view.
O'Hare, The Lorax (2012 adaptation)

We're despicable
We make ourselves
Plain sickable
Berate ourselves,
Hate ourselves
Still none us of wishes he
Would change
Mr. Magoo's Christmas Carol, "We're Despicable"

    Film - Live-Action 

I was "cured", all right.
Alex DeLarge, A Clockwork Orange

You can learn to sweep the guilt under the rug and go on. Otherwise it overwhelms you.
Chris, Match Point

I would like, so much, to reach out and touch you in your loneliness. What would that be like, I wonder? I mean, what would be wrong with that? I realize that you're not a person in the strictest sense of the word... Is this the face of a rat? Are these the eyes of a rat? "Hath not a Jew eyes?" I feel for you, Helen. No, I don't think so. You're a Jewish bitch. You nearly talked me into it, didn't you? (beats her)
Amon Goeth, Schindler's List

Darth Vader: The Emperor has been expecting you.
Luke Skywalker: I know, father.
Vader: So, you have accepted the truth.
Luke: I've accepted the truth that you were once Anakin Skywalker, my father-
Vader: That name no longer has any meaning for me.
Luke: It is the name of your true self, you've only forgotten. I know there is good in you. The Emperor hasn't driven it from you fully. That was why you couldn't destroy me. That's why you won't bring me to your Emperor now.
Vader: ...I see you have constructed a new lightsaber. Your skills are complete. Indeed you are powerful, as the Emperor has foreseen.
Luke: Come with me.
Vader: Obi-Wan once thought as you do. You don't know the power of The Dark Side. I must obey my master.
Luke: I will not turn. And you'll be forced to kill me.
Vader: If that is your destiny...
Luke: Search your feelings, father. You can't do this. I feel the conflict within you! Let go of your hate!
Vader: It is... too late for me, son. The Emperor will show you the true nature of the Force. He is your master now.
Luke: ...Then my father is truly dead.

Eric: Am I never to be forgiven for one moment of weakness?
Baxter: According to our latest census you've had at least fourteen moments of weakness, Eric.


There are no more barriers to cross... My pain is constant and sharp and I do not hope for a better world for anyone, in fact I want my pain to be inflicted on others. I want no one to escape, but even after admitting this there is no catharsis, my punishment continues to elude me and I gain no deeper knowledge of myself; no new knowledge can be extracted from my telling. This confession has meant nothing.
Patrick Bateman, American Psycho

I am heartily ashamed of myself, Lizzy. But don't despair, it'll pass; and no doubt more quickly than it should.
Mr. Bennet, Pride and Prejudice

    Live-Action TV 

Londo: I have made many choices lately, Vir. And today, for the first time I am not sure those choices were right.
Vir: Perhaps some good has come out of this tragedy. It's not too late to make some new choices.
Londo: No. The blood is already on my hands. Right or wrong, I must follow the path to its end.

I don't know if you believe in Hell - I don't know if you're into that - but if there is, we're pretty much going there. But I'm not going to lie down until I get there.
Walter White, Breaking Bad, "Say My Name"

Hilary: Will, if you have an ounce of compassion, you'll let me off the hook.
Will: That's a good point... Nah! We'll do it anyway!

Oh, my God, how can a night that's turned out so badly get even worse? Wait, don't panic. Think for a second... No, this is good, this is sensible.

    Mythology and Religion 

The light came into the world, but people preferred darkness to light, because their works were evil. For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come toward the light, so that his works might not be exposed.


And for what?
I've killed and I've shot
And reddened the cold tears of children with blood
And If I could go back and make my amends
I'd make all those mistakes again
I'd kill every last one of those bastards, my friend
Alestorm, "Pirate Song"

If I had a dollar for every time
I repented the sin and commit the same crime
I'd be sitting on top of the world today
Emilie Autumn, "God Help Me"

Since I was no bigger than a weevil,
They've been saying I was evil
That if bad was a boot, that I'd fit it
That I'm a wicked young lady,
But I've been trying hard lately
Oh fuck it! I'm a monster! I admit it!
Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, "The Curse of Millhaven"

I am not a bad man
Even though I do bad things
Very bad things
Such horrible things
But it's not quite what it seems
(Not quite what he seems)
Not quite what I seem...
Ah, Hell...
It's exactly what it seems.
Creature Feature, "Such Horrible Things"

Maybe I shouldn't be singing this song
Ranting and raving and carrying on
Maybe they're right when they tell me I'm wrong...


I am in blood stepped in so far that should I wade no more,
Returning were as tedious as go o'er.
Macbeth, Act 3

    Video Games 

Could I have made mistakes? One does not build cities if one is guided by doubt. But can one govern in absolute certainty? I know that my beliefs have elevated me, just as I know that the things I have rejected would have destroyed me. But the city... it's collapsing before my... have I become so convinced by my own beliefs, that I have stopped seeing the truth? ...Perhaps. But, Atlas is out there, and he aims to destroy me, and destroy my city! To question is to surrender! I will not question!
Andrew Ryan, BioShock, "Mistakes" audio diary

The Lord forgives everything... but I'm just a prophet. So I don't have to. Amen.
Father Zachary Hale Comstock, BioShock Infinite

You know, being Caroline taught me a valuable lesson. I thought you were my greatest enemy, but all along, you were my best friend. The surge of emotion that shot through me when I saved your life taught me an even more valuable lesson: where Caroline lives in my brain. Caroline deleted. Goodbye, Caroline.
GLaDOS, Portal 2


Weary of being a slave to these homicidal impulses, Butch seriously considered getting a lobotomy. But for that he'd need a referral from his Primary Care Physician, whom he'd buried under the back porch last Tuesday. Damn HMO.

Oh dear Lord, I actually have zombie minions. Yep, I guess I really am evil now.
Ian, Errant Story

    Web Original 

Since that day, my life has changed forever. I could no longer go back to the way I was. I had become a bloodthirsty monster, killing innocents in order to achieve my true, ultimate goal. Awesome!

Less than a week ago, Billboard published an interview with Chris Brown who claimed that spending 108 days in jail changed him for the better and the new Chris Brown (The New Adventures of Old Chris Brown, now streaming on Netflix) doesn't get into fights or start shit at the club anymore. But here we are, a week later and Chris Brown is back to his old shit-starting asshole tricks once again. Cue the Welcome Back, Kotter theme song!
dlisted, "Here We Go Again"

He's... really just leaving me here! He gave me his energy and... left me! Maybe this is a sign... Maybe I should change... Maybe this is my second... and last... chance... Maybe... I was wrong. (beat) NAAAAH!!

In "Let It Go", the line "Let the storm rage on" is followed by "The cold never bothered me anyway" - a line many people remember, as it's said twice, sung in a different style, and is the last line of the song. Of course, as the Snow Queen, Elsa is not bothered by low temperatures in the literal sense. But in the other senses of the word "cold", she is still frightened of it. Uncontrolled release of her powers still remains the primary problem in the story, and after building her ice palace she is never again happy while using her powers, until the end of the movie.

Most importantly, "cold" as in isolation from other people, is still bothering her to the core. Think about what she does after she finishes her song, right after she sings that last line "the cold never bothered me anyway": she turns around and slams shut the doors to her new castle, as she had done in Arendelle. Her way of dealing with her problem is still the same as it was before her coronation: she thinks as long as she shuts people out - and if that doesn't work, as long as she's far enough away and isolated and alone - she'll be okay. But this is diametrically opposed to the central message of the film - that instead of not being bothered by the cold of isolation, she needs to be embraced by the warmth of love.
NaClhv analysing Frozen's usage of this trope

Narrator: He puzzled and he puzzled til his puzzler was sore. Then the Grump thought of something he hadn't before.
Just because he hates something doesn't mean others should. He could share, not force, his opinions like others would.
For it's our different outlooks that can make people grow, and everyone is different like every flake of snow.
For different points of view can exist for a reason: to learn about one another and to make each other decent.
The Grump: Naw, I'm right. They're wrong.
Narrator: Well, fuck you, then!

Later on, Weiss is storming away and Ruby comes to catch up to her. Ruby asks why Weiss has reverted back to Ep 5-7 era Weiss after getting her hopes up in Ep 8...
Matt the Mammoth Rider, RWBY Recaps episode 10

    Western Animation 

My own mother thought I was a monster... She was right, of course, but it still hurt.

Harleen Quinzel: (in the hospital after The Joker threw her out a window) Never again. No more obsession, no more craziness, no more Joker. I finally see that slime for what he is: a murderous, manipulative, irredeemable...
(she notices the flower and "Feel better soon" note on her nightstand)
Harley Quinn: ...Angel!

    Real Life 

Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing ever happened.

To err is human, to repent divine, to persist devilish.
Benjamin Franklin, Poor Richard's Almanack (1742)

[Peter] Engel fully believed that he'd encountered God, and had awoken from the heart attack hearing the words "Jesus died on the cross for my sins. He is my Lord and Savior" coming out of his own mouth. His friends, however, used to the crazy drug-talk and new age waffle, assumed his chat with the creator was merely the latest bout of fruitcakery, and it wasn't long before he brushed it off too. Within a couple of months, now recovered from the heart attack, he was hoovering up the coke once more.
Stuart Millard, So Excited, So Scared: The Saved by the Bell Retrospective

A man who has blown all his options can't afford the luxury of changing his ways. He has to capitalize on whatever he has left, and he can't afford to admit ó no matter how often heís reminded of it ó that every day of his life takes him farther and farther down a blind alley...
Hunter S. Thompson, Hell's Angels: A Strange and Terrible Saga

The survivors all suffer from the same certainty: they know that if similar acts of persecution were to begin tomorrow, despite all official demonstrations of sympathy for the victims and condemnation of the oppressors, the rescuers would be as rare as they were before. Their good neighbors who now greet them every morning would once again turn away.
Tzvetan Todorov, Facing the Extreme: Moral Life in the Concentration Camps

There is, of course, a popular myth that people do change; but in real life, they donít. With age and experience, they simply become more adroit at selling themselves.
Gore Vidal, Playboy 1969