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Ekul
topic
12:50:03 PM Apr 25th 2013
There are so many examples on here that don't match the trope description, but I don't want to make a large change willy-nilly. Many of these examples are people who, through their own design, become incredibly dangerous. According to the trope description, pulling yourself up by your bootstraps and finding your calling isn't really the spirit of this. Who cares if the character was at one point a child? At some point, we all were. Some examples are particularly bad- Xykon, who was a sadist since childhood, is mentioned as being an example on its trope page. If Xykon counts, this seems towards People Sit on Chairs. All bad humans were children at some point, they don't plop out of the womb with spikes of villainy. Now, I'd understand if the trope included some clause about seeing villains back when they were harmless kids, but it doesn't say that at all- it merely says that the transformation must been an unlikely series of events that transformed a person who was on the road to normalcy to a path of nightmare fuel.

Now, take, for instance, Anikan, whose legendarily high force potential would have gone on unnoticed had he grown up as a slaveboy under ordinary circumstances: he was spotted by the right person at the right time, who just so happened to need his help, and then because he was in the hands of the right person, he was able to be trained in the ways of the force. And as a result of him being nobody he had weaknesses a Jedi would not normally have- and these weaknesses were exploited to make him fall. And the person able to exploit these weaknesses was Palpatine, who was exactly where he needed to be to make Anikan fall. And then, he became Darth Vader, the galaxy's most well known mass murderer.

Compare this to Xykon: Xykon was BORN a tool. Sure, he may have been aimless as a kid, but he was still a sadist who zombified his family. He killed just about everybody he met on his way to the top. He's exactly the sort of person you would expect to become a sorcerer lich: he was just lucky and powerful enough to bludgeon his way to the top.

I say we need a massive revision to the trope list: Cut anyone who wasn't "normal", cut any villain shown as a child, before growing up and becoming a villain and cut any examples that aren't actual "nightmares" and are rather normal villain figures. If we really think villains as kids is a trope, make it a separate trope.

Also, cut the heroes, unless they are some form of heroic abomination of some sort.
Candi
topic
09:27:37 PM Jan 25th 2013
Would this example from He-Man count?

http://www.he-man.org/cartoon/episode.php?id=44&ep=189

"A poor man named Nepthu limps across the Sands of Time in search for the Temple of The Sun. Inside he claims the Scarab of Power, a magical jewel. The scarab's power transforms Nepthu into a muscular, dominating being."

I'm not sure, because he's a one-shot villain, and is back to normal by the end of the episode. (Really a shame, too.)
MCE
topic
04:34:33 AM Sep 7th 2012
related to Zero To Hero?

illegalcheese
topic
05:11:27 PM May 11th 2012
edited by illegalcheese
So, I'd argue that this trope would work just as well for heroes. I mean, you wouldn't get anything that nightmarish, but certainly a nightmare for the other side to deal with. Otherwise the details would theoretically be exactly the same as is already described.

Though, granted, the bare bones of that sort of thing is exceedingly common in Heroic Fantasy, etc. kinds of fiction, I feel that the trope would still be in effect if an emphasis on a "before/after" effect is put in place, or just the sheer scale of badassery or greatness or what have you to which a once extremely unassuming, if heroic, individual has climbed is made apparent. So, yes, editors would have to be much more discerning about heroic examples than with villainous ones.
JimCambias
topic
03:11:07 PM Jan 23rd 2012
Deleted the second "Real Life" folder because it was redundant. Also it was redundant. And because it was redundant, I deleted it.
Crandlefist
topic
05:49:01 PM Oct 13th 2011
What's with all the heroic/generic badass examples? The trope implies villainy very heavily.
Vinehammer
topic
05:56:24 PM Aug 11th 2011
I took out one of the Kung Fu Panda examples because I'm familiar enough with it to find its presence here particularly egregious, but I really think the whole page could use a trim by people more familiar with the other works in question than I am. The trope description talks about the Nobody being, well, a nobody, someone who, if not for a twist of fate, would live and die unrecognized, unmarked by history—not someone who's starting with genius IQ or a noble title or respectable skills in martial arts. It then describes the Nightmare with a link to Eldritch Abomination and talks about being a threat on a universal scale, powerful enough to nuke entire civilizations to a fine gray powder—not run of the mill recurring comic book villains and serial killers. I really do think people are stretching the use here, on both ends.

I know people like to trumpet their favorite badasses and all, but if characters like that whole list of Spiderman villains apply, I really think the phrasing of the trope could stand to be toned down several notches.
Crowley
02:01:19 PM Oct 13th 2011
I think the block of Spider-man villains says less about any trope decay and more of Spider-man's love of Freak Lab Accidents (which undoubtedly do fall under the "twist of fate" descriptor, if nothing else).
RecklessPrudence
topic
07:38:07 AM Apr 4th 2011
Where's this Adrian Selene in Web Original from? Sounds like something I want to read/watch/whatever.
BattleHamster
topic
02:12:49 PM Apr 8th 2010
Is Anakin Skywalker really an example? I mean, it took over ten years for him to get that powerful/screwed-up; that's hardly overnight.
Crowley
03:09:16 PM Jun 2nd 2011
Having the change be quick isn't really necessary to the trope; all that matters is, once upon a time, they were a nobody. It says so in the article ("whether instantly or over the course of a story...")
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