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Sinister Sentient Sun

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A sentient sun is evil.

This trope has been Launched!
Proposed By:
Jubileus57 on Aug 13th 2017 at 4:28:25 AM
Last Edited By:
Jubileus57 on Aug 30th 2017 at 10:08:38 AM
Name Space: Main
Page Type: trope
Who would want to be orbiting around that?

Since the Sun is the main provider of life, heat and energy on Earth, it is a symbol of health and light, and is often depicted as a benevolent being.

Well, This Is Not That Trope.

Sometimes, the Sun is depicted as a sentient, malevolent entity that actively tries to harm the life forms it shines upon. Some works also feature sun-like beings that bear malicious intentions.

Not that this is completely unjustified: while obviously not sentient, the Sun is incredibly nocive to the people that stay to much under its lights. Aside from the visible spectrum, it emits a vast array of rays which can be exceedingly dangerous, most notably the ultraviolets, which can cause various skin cancers (including the deadly melanoma), cataract and sunburns, among others. It's only logical to see it as an evil entity in some works.

Sub-Trope of Sentient Stars and of Light Is Not Good. Compare The Power of the Sun. Can overlap with Evil Is Burning Hot and The Face of the Sun, usually with an angry, menacing expression for the latter.


Comic Books

  • Solaris is an evil, artificial sun and one of Superman's nemesis in DC One Million and All-Star Superman. It is often nicknamed the "Tyrant Sun" or the "Evil Star".


  • In Nests of Chimerae (a Spin-Off of the Labyrinths of Echo series)n when Max enters the Stramoslyabians' domain, the Sun suddenly turns into a grinning monstrosity looming ominously in the sky. Subverted when he learns that it is just an illusion created by the shaman patrons of Stramoslyabians.

Mythology & Religion

  • To the Aztec, the sun was a God named Tonatiuh, which required Blood Magic to move on the sky, so the Aztecs performed thousands of Human Sacrifices to feed him with human blood.


  • Doctor Who:
    • In 42, the Doctor and Martha must rescue a spaceship that is being pulled into the sentient sun of the Torajii System. Subverted, as it doesn't try to destroy the spaceship for malicious purposes, but because it's crew had stolen it's core, and it wanted it back.
    • In the episode "The Rings of Akhaten" features an Eldritch Abomination called Akhaten or "Grandfather" who is a gigantic sun-like entity that devoured the souls and memories of sacrifices. When the Doctor denies him the offering of a young girl, he awakens and threatened to consume all of the seven neighboring planets before the Doctor and Clara stopped him via a Phlebotinum Overload.

Video Games

  • In the Fallen London settings, the Sun is one of the Judgements, almighty entities that use their light to impose their own laws upon everything they shine upon. In Sunless Sea, the Dawn Machine functions as an artificial Sun that gained sentience, and it''s just as nasty as the source material.
  • Mr. Bright is a small sun that is fought as a boss in Kirby: Nightmare in Dream Land alongside its moon counterpart Mr. Shine.
  • The strongest Bonus Boss in Miitopia is the Dark Sun, a grey sun-shaped Eldritch Abomination decorated with Miis' stolen faces.
  • Super Mario Bros. 3 has the Angry Sun, a miniature sun enemy with a furious face that tries to ram into the plumber from above. It only appears in two levels..
    • The Angry Sun returns in Mario Kart DS and Mario Kart Wii in the Desert Hills racetrack, where it shoot Fire Snakes that act as obstacles to the racers.
  • Wario Land 3 has the Taiyo, which is found in the Vast Plain and Colossal Hole levels. It flies around the sky during daytime, trying to set Wario on fire. It's name even means "Sun" in japanese.

Web Animation

  • In the deleted scenes from ASDFMovie, one skits has the sun sadistically call out a human to directly look at it. The results are predictable.
    The Sun: "HAHA now you're blind!"

Web Comics

  • In several Brawl in the Family strips, the Sun is a cheerful character that falls in the Obliviously Evil category:
    • In an alternate ending of Sun's Song, the Sun has a family reunion with many other suns, right next to the Earth, which really can't take all that heat and ends up completely burnt.
    • Other strips (seen here, here and here) has the same Sun joyfully sending beams to Earth to please either a flower or the planet itself, only to burn the entire world to a crisp.

Feedback: 30 replies

Aug 14th 2017 at 2:02:27 AM

In Avatar The Last Airbender, firebenders draw their energy from the Sun. Although not all firebenders are evil, most of them are affiliated with the Firelord, and firebending is established as the most violent and aggressive bending art of the four. One story arc in the series explicitly focuses on a solar eclipse during which the firebenders are unable to use their powers, giving the heroes an advantage to attack the Firelord's forces.

Aug 13th 2017 at 10:08:10 AM

<accidental duplicate>

Aug 13th 2017 at 6:49:41 AM

Tabletop Games:

  • Pelor, the Sun God of the Greyhawk setting used in Dungeons And Dragons, is canonically Lawful Good. However, some players subscribe to an Alternate Character Interpretation known as the "Burning Hate" theory that Pelor is actually an evil fiend of some kind, masqerading as a benevolent god. A discussion on the theory and the arguments proposed by those who believe it can be found here.

Aug 13th 2017 at 7:38:19 AM

Comic Books:

  • Apart of kryponite, one of the few Superman's weaknesses (as well a lot of his Alternate Universe counterparts) is being under a red sun, which depowered to make him almost at the point of a human being. In fact, that's how Superboy Prime is defeated after Infinite Crisis and how is imprisoned by Green Lanterns by creating a mini red sun under their cell (at least until Sinestro Corps freed him to make him their herald).

Aug 13th 2017 at 3:36:09 PM

  • In King Of Dragon Pass, the sun god Yelm is a tyrant and rival to the Orlanthi pantheon. (The Orlanthi sun god, incidentally, is a good guy who defected from Yelm's side.)

Aug 13th 2017 at 5:43:32 PM

  • Lieger is the radioactive green sun that shines in what is essentially the hell-dimension in Exalted. While he is mostly aloof and considers himself above the petty infighting and meddling of the rest of the demons, he is the main soul of Malfeas, the former king of creation who now wishes to destroy everything in his rage at being overthrown.

Aug 13th 2017 at 8:35:30 PM

In Suikoden V, the Sun Rune is very destructive in the wrong hands. When Queen Arshtat became the host to the Rune, she grows mad by its power. One of the first thing she did was turn Lordlake into a wasteland, as the power evaporated the water.

Aug 13th 2017 at 8:46:42 PM

Live Action TV

Aug 14th 2017 at 3:05:20 AM

From the Description, this is supposed to be "an evil sun or sun-like being".

It is already starting to undergo Trope Decay while still in TLP, which is a very bad sign.

Aug 14th 2017 at 4:51:17 AM

^ I might've forgotten the context on my comment. I was proposing T h e s u n i s a d e a d l y l a s e r. as a quote or caption than an example actually.

Aug 14th 2017 at 4:48:14 AM

In all seriousness, reading this, it's kinda redundant and objective. We have The Power Of The Sun, which can be used by heroes and villains, and Light Is Not Good.

Aug 14th 2017 at 5:32:42 AM

  • Changed the Laconic version as an attempt to make it clearer
  • Added 2 examples and deleted the real-life example which did not fit
  • Changed the description once again to make it clearer.

Aug 14th 2017 at 12:51:57 PM

^^ Those two should be added to the description as "compare" tropes.

Aug 14th 2017 at 7:29:16 PM

Sentient Stars should be the Super Trope of this, since obviously the "sun" is a star. Also, some examples there can be applied here

Aug 15th 2017 at 5:46:22 AM

A formatting issue: there doesn't need to be a line break after every sentence in the description.

Aug 18th 2017 at 4:13:58 AM

Would belong in the Heliotropes, Stellar Index and perhaps the Villains indexes.

Edit: Also renamed the trope to be clearer about the fact that the Sun has to be sentient to qualify (+ Added Alitterative Appeal mentioned above)

Aug 19th 2017 at 12:06:22 AM

Video Games

  • Chrono Trigger has an optional boss called Son of Sun, a red floating eyeball surrounded by 5 balls of fire.
  • The primary antagonist of Moon Hunters is the Sun Cult, under orders of the sun god himself who is also the final boss.


  • Played with in Brawl In The Family, in one strip where a sentient sun unintentionally causes the end of the world.

Aug 21st 2017 at 6:05:27 AM

Wario Land 3 has the Taiyo (sun) enemy found in the Vast Plain and Colossal Hole levels. He flies around the sky trying to set Wario on fire, and is replaced by the electricity themed Mr Moon enemy at night.

Aug 21st 2017 at 10:41:42 AM

I feel this draft is quite misunderstood though i don't get where it is unclear... Could someone enlighten me?

Aug 25th 2017 at 6:10:58 AM

^ I think it's pretty clear. The thing is, we don't have a trope for villains with a sun motif, so people want to shoehorn examples of that into this as well.

Aug 27th 2017 at 6:11:41 AM

  • Added an image (drawn by myself)

Aug 28th 2017 at 9:36:43 AM

  • Subverted in Nests of Chimerae (a Spin Off of the Labyrinths Of Echo series): When Max enters the Stramoslyabians' domain, the sun suddenly turns into a grinning monstrosity looming ominously in the sky. He is relieved to learn, however, that it is just an illusion created by the shaman patrons of Stramoslyabians mostly for their entertainment.

Aug 28th 2017 at 10:44:33 AM

Mythology and Religion:

(I guess demanding Human Sacrifice qualifies a god as evil...)

Aug 28th 2017 at 12:18:19 PM

This is The Same But More Specific for Light Is Not Good. What makes Stars so different from other light-sources that they need their own article to describe how important they are to depictions of villain-y?

Aug 28th 2017 at 2:47:28 PM

^ I don't see it as The Same But More Specific for Light Is Not Good since the latter has à very wide coverage going from merely light-themed villains to light-users to fully fledged light producers... Il therefore see it more like a subtrope to it.

Aug 28th 2017 at 11:42:56 PM

^ Subtropes are always The Same But More Specific. What makes it a proper subtrope is if it holds some extra meaning beyond subverting Light Is Good. Maybe something like the Sun is often seen as something like a Big Good?

Aug 29th 2017 at 5:31:44 AM

^ True. I think using the primary source of life and energy to Earth (or lookalikes) as an evil antagonist (while it is quite often seen as a good guy in most works) is specific enough to be a subtrope to Light Is Not Good.