Main Knight Of Cerebus Discussion

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09:07:51 AM Jan 10th 2017
edited by Giantleviathan
Should the definition of Knight of Cerebus be changed?

As it stands, the written definition for Knight of Cerebus is: "Villain who is dark and serious compared to his light-hearted and comedic predecessors".

However, the most commonly used definition seems to have become a more general: "A villain far more threatening than it's predecessors, who's very presence creates a darker shift in the tone of the story."

Now, we could just clean up and delete every entry that falls under the second definition, but

A) At this point that would probably be about 70% of the page.

B) We kind of already have a trope for serious villians in light-hearted works.


C) I feel a general: "Villian that creates a darker tone shift" is a worthy trope in and off itself.
11:46:29 PM Feb 10th 2016
How come whenever a Knight of Cerebus has a Laughably Evil demeanor they're ranked lower than ones with no comedic traits?
07:54:22 AM Jul 6th 2015
"In shows that are generally Lighter and Softer, said villain may have some light-hearted or comical traits, but still gives a much higher sense of dread and genuine threat to the heroes than previous adversaries." What are some examples of this?
09:35:56 PM Dec 29th 2014
Am I the only one feeling that Knight of Cerebus these days has become an euphemism for Complete Monster, since many such examples tend to have "Knight Of Cerebus" under their character entry? If so, when isn't a CM a Knight of Cerebus?

P.S. On the other hand, I know that not all Knights of Cerebus are Complete Monsters.
01:36:27 AM Dec 30th 2014
I am guessing that if the work is already serious before the CM shows up, then the CM would not qualify as Knight of Cerebus.
05:21:22 PM Aug 14th 2014
I think a lot of these examples don't fit at all. Many of them can be summed up as "this series is dark from the beginning to the end, but X is slightly more evil than the other villains, so X is the Knight of Cerebus". No, my friend, X is not. The knight of cerebus is someone who permanently changes the tone of the series, if the series was already dark before that character came, that doesn't count. Some villains are also being mentioned just because they are more powerful or more plot relevant than others. But being the Big Bad does not automatically make someone the Knight of Cerebus.

I think a clean up is in order.
07:35:42 PM Dec 16th 2013
I recently noticed that the subversions for Knight of Cerebus seem to have been removed from the film/live action category of the trope. Is there a specific reason for this?, if so, What would be the criteria to add an example of a subversion?
04:18:01 PM Dec 9th 2013
edited by
Just after glancing at this trope, I think we should mark this as a spoiler trope and unblock all the tags. The very appearance of what kickstarts a work's Cerebus Syndrome is a pretty important factor. What say you all?
08:53:48 PM Mar 20th 2013
An awful lot of examples on this page are media that were ALREADY quite dark and serious, and the Knight of Cerebus only made things even more so. Are these legitimate instances of the trope, or is a cleanup in order?
09:52:39 PM Jan 8th 2013
Is it possible for non-villainous characters to fall under this trope?

I always found this one confusing because the main page says it's about villains played for drama instead of humor, but the subpages' descriptions (Playing With - Basic and Laconic) say that it's about a character (no statement of how they're implemented or even if they're 'good guys' or 'bad guys') who signals the tone shift.
01:35:09 PM Jan 17th 2013
Probably an antihero could, if done correctly.
03:29:54 PM Dec 2nd 2012
I'm thinking we should rename this for one simple reason: Bad Trope Namer. Cerebus is not only an aversion, but a webcomic many may not be familiar with, not to mention that the trope name kind of suggests Cerebus himself is the Vile Villain part of an otherwise Saccarine Show.
09:44:58 PM Jan 8th 2013
The trope name sounds more like a snowclone of Cerebus Syndrome than any implications about characters of the comic book (it's not a webcomic).
11:30:11 AM Feb 2nd 2013
Yeah. I think something like Herald of Darkness would be more appropriate.
10:14:54 PM Jul 17th 2012
I don't think Miko of Order Of The Stick qualifies. She doesn'nt kill Shojo until long after she is introduced and little else is her fault.
06:32:00 PM Jul 5th 2012
Wouldn't Kagari from Black★Rock Shooter count? Let me explain. When Mato meets Yomi, she is already depressed, but things start to get more melodramatic once she appears. Her first appearance is Nightmare Fuel, she is a Psycho Lesbian who carves a heart in Yomi's chest, falls down the stairs so that Yomi wouldn't leave with Mato, and she psychologically cracks. After those two episodes, Yomi starts dipping into psychological problems, Mato tries to save her, etc.
01:18:48 AM Jun 1st 2012
So the name came from Cerebus which doesn't have a true example?
05:20:15 AM Jan 7th 2012
edited by Goremand
I think I'm gonna remove the One Piece example.

"The early villains of One Piece tend to provide much comic relief and very rarely give off a threatening tone"? Really? Are you talking about Morgan, who tried to kill a five-year old girl for bringing food to a convict? Or maybe Kuro, who wanted to slaughter an entire village, then his own crew, for money? Hell, even Buggy killed his own subordinate with a cannon in his first appearance. That's some serious comic relief right there!
06:21:54 PM Aug 10th 2011
I'm wondering whether this trope should only include deathly serious villains or also include comparative examples (eg. a clownish yet genuinely effective villain compared to a bunch of genuinely HarmlessVillains may still count), especially since a lot of examples on the site are less than true to the former (one page even refers to Yosemite Sam as one, which abiding by WB' statements, certainly doesn't abide to the former, but is actually true to the latter).
05:45:45 PM Oct 22nd 2011
edited by ading
It only counts if the series becomes darker after the character gets introduced. It's not so much about the villain but the effect the villain has on the story; that is, they mark the beginning of Cerebus Syndrome. As for the page referring to Sam as one, I say kill it with fire. Looney Tunes still remained a lighthearted comedy after Sam was introduced, even when Sam was around.
04:18:37 PM Aug 1st 2010
This page used to have a picture. Is there a reason why it was removed?
05:32:43 PM Aug 1st 2010
Yes. Just a Face and a Caption. Picture was completely meaningless to those not familiar with the work in question.

I'm really not sure what picture would work for this page at all, really. The best I can come up with is a before and after shot.
11:12:42 PM Apr 23rd 2010
After reading the examples, this Troper also tends to find that the writing tends to go right downhill the moment this occurs; said character usually pulls crap out of nowhere and is generally written poorly. Probably due to the character just been suddenly introduced, with little to no back-story, no proper justification for abilities, or otherwise is a cop-out.
12:12:44 PM Sep 15th 2011
This may be a feature of the work that you have read or seen, but it is far from universal. In my experience, it often improves the writing, or at least shifts the plot into a higher gear after a huge amount of light comedy filler.
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