Quotes / More Than Mind Control

"Turning an asset is a multi-step process. You back them into a corner, you pile on stress, you create tension with the people they trust. If you can cut them off from good influences, so you're the only voice in their ear, they're much more likely to listen. It's a formula that works so well, it even works on spies who ought to know better."
Michael Westen, Burn Notice, "Enemies Closer"

"We don't have to reprogram him. Just accentuate his natural instincts: More rebellious, more stubborn, more suspicious of his fellow officers. Then all we have to do if give him a nudge in the right direction from time to time, and let nature take its course."
Alfred Bester, Babylon 5 ("The Face of the Enemy")

Stand forth, Servant. The Sword you carry has been smelted in the heat of your anger, forged upon your desire, tempered in your hate, quenched in your soul, polished with your loyalty, furnished with your bones and skin, tested in your hand, and borne in my name.
You, Slave, are mine, as much as the Blade...

Terra: What did I do? What did YOU do?
Maleficent: You speak as if I pulled some invisible strings. No, you couldn't be further from the truth, child. I simply whispered to the darkness you already held inside.

Grodd: For months I've been reading their body language and facial expressions like a book. They were holding back considerable resentment for each other. All I had to do was get those feelings to come out.
Parasite: How'd ya do that?
Grodd: Parasite, have you ever said something you knew you shouldn't have? Something really hurtful?
Parasite: Sure.
Grodd: What made you do it? Too little sleep? Low blood sugar? Maybe you were just in 'one of those moods' you get into every so often. [...] This blessed organ of mine can send out thought waves that affect those moods. They open the door that most people keep locked.

Hawke: You never know just how far someone will go until it's too late.
Varric: I always thought [Bartrand] was more prone to puppy-kicking than...mutilation and torture. Whatever that idol did to him, it found something inside I don't think even HE knew was there.

She doesn’t change how you think. Not directly. It’s more subliminal, like… like cause and effect. Every time she shows up, she picks a few people, turns them into guided missiles, so they make something horrible happen weeks, months, or years after they ran into her.
Genesis on the Simurgh, Worm

But I'm no puppeteer, Kevin. I don't make things happen; doesn't work like that (...) Free will. It's like butterfly wings: once touched, they never get off the ground. No, I only set the stage. You pull your own strings.

It's so easy for me to whisper to other gods, especially when I am only confirming their own deepest fears.

Aria Blaze: But the Rainblossoms, or whatever they're called, aren't under our spell. (...)
Adagio Dazzle: The Rainbooms are just as capable of falling apart as anyone else. They just need a little... push in the wrong direction.

[Spellbinder has just been revealed to Commissioner Gordon and the GCPD]
Batman: Didn't know you had a shadow, did you, Commissioner?
Barbara: Spellbinder?
Batman: He was there at the garage with us. He used his powers to create an illusion.
Barbara: [realizing] That's why I saw you kill Mad Stan.
Batman: But I didn't. I wouldn't.
Spellbinder: [to Barbara] You were so ready to believe the worst, it was easy.

Supergirl: Honestly...? I'm... torn. I remember what Darkseid turned me into —
Superman: ... We've been over this, Kara. Darkseid lives for manipulation. He has magics at his disposal. Hypnotists. Scientists whose only function is to break your spirit. Ask Barda if you want to hear the horror stories she and Scott suffered through. Darkseid IS evil.
Supergirl: But... Did he influence me... or bring out a darkness that is already there?
Superman: I already know that answer.