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Fairy Devilmother

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Evil Fairy Godmother; a Fairy Godmother that curses their godchild rather than blesses them.

This work is a proposed Trope, Tropers can vote and offer feedback in the comments section below.
Proposed By:
LavonPapillon1 on Aug 3rd 2017 at 10:56:10 AM
Last Edited By:
LavonPapillon1 on Jul 8th 2018 at 2:20:39 PM
Name Space: Main
Page Type: trope
Make a wish, dearie.

"The princess shall indeed grow in grace and beauty, beloved by all who know her. But... before the sun sets on her 16th birthday, she shall prick her finger - on the spindle of a spinning wheel - and DIE!"
Maleficent, Sleeping Beauty

Brought on from the Fairy Godmother from Cinderella, the Fairy Godmother (and fairies as a whole) is pictured as a kind, selfless and synonymous with that of hope, light and Happily Ever After.

The Fairy Devilmother on the other hand does not give blessings. In-fact, if you see the Fairy Devilmother, bow down and hope that she is feeling merciful that evening. There is no running from them. You will get hurt somehow, but maybe things won't turn out as bad if you cooperate. Instead of dealing in blessings, dreams and wishes your heart makes, this Fairy dabbles in creating doom, using dark, unholy powers to curse their wards.

Their motivations vary. Maybe they're just evil by nature. Maybe you gave them great disrespect in some way and decides to "bless" you or your newborn baby with a cruel and unusual fate. While the fairies themselves won't always be in literal black, they are almost always dark, dealing in dark magic in contrast to his or her more sugary sisters.

Sub-Trope of The Fair Folk and Fairy Godmother.

See also Evil Wears Black, Grimmification and Jackass Genie.


    open/close all folders 

    Comic Books 
  • Hadeon the Destroyer from Fables was a fairy who crashed Briar Rose's christening uninvited, wanting to bestow her own "gift" upon the newborn child. Because she was uninvited to the calling unlike her sister (and For the Evulz), her gift was for the child to prick her finger and die.

    Film - Animated 

    Film - Live-Action 
  • Maleficent in Maleficent fits this trope just like her animated counterpart. As revenge for betraying her and amputating her wings just to become king, Maleficent interrupts Aurora's christening and curses her with a fate where she will prick her finger on the spindle of a spinning wheel and fall into an eternal sleep. Deconstructed, as she eventually grows to love Aurora like a daughter, who even begins to call her her "fairy godmother."
  • Lucinda in Ella Enchanted not only "blesses" Ella with the "gift of obedience", but when Ella pleads and begs for her to remove the "gift", Lucinda is offended and refuses, declaring arrogantly "everybody loves my gifts." She not only shows no interest in why Ella would want it removed, but while Ella chained herself to a tree to try and avoid obeying Edgar's order to kill Char, Lucinda frees her and orders her to go to the ball. This is in contrast to her original novel counterpart, who designs her gifts to help children develop into proper adults, only to realize the error of her ways when she experiences her gifts first-hand.

    Fairy Tales 
  • In the original Sleeping Beauty fairy tale, the King and Queen invite all of the fairies in the land sans one (or her actual godmothers, depending on what version you're reading). Carabosse, the one who was left out felt spited and decided to curse the princess with death.


    Live Action TV 
  • The Black Fairy from Once Upon a Time acts as this. Whereas most fairies bless select children and distribute light magic across the realms, the Black Fairy kidnaps children so that she can turn them into her slaves in the Dark realm, uses dark magic to an extent that she was able to singlehandedly threaten all of the realms and created the Dark Curse that caused the series' premise.

Feedback: 20 replies

Aug 3rd 2017 at 7:01:48 PM

I think, despite what the namespace said, the fairy tale example shouldn't be in the Literature folder. I think we usually call the folders for that "Fairy Tales" or "Folklore".

Aug 3rd 2017 at 9:08:25 PM


  • Lucinda in Ella Enchanted. She gives Ella the "gift" of obedience which make her take orders from anybody. However, Lucinda doesn't do it out of spite, but by not understanding how her "gifts" are really harmful and not helpful.

Aug 4th 2017 at 12:57:38 AM

At first, I thought this was about alternative skin colors of traditional fantasy characters... Guess I spent too much time on the internet. :-/

Aug 4th 2017 at 5:08:12 AM

Why not call it Wicked Fairy? Then it can't be confused with a fairy with dark skin color and/or African ethnicity.

Aug 5th 2017 at 5:45:03 AM

Thirding Wicked Fairy. I'd also drop the appearance-related talk in the description, since that isn't what defines the trope.

I'd also say that there are two very different tropes at play here: one is when it relates to simply evil Fair Folk, another when this is a direct counterpart to the Fairy Godmother, with a direct and personal interest in a specific character.

Aug 5th 2017 at 11:44:18 AM

I think Wicked Fairy would be better than the current name, but I would favor Malevolent Fairy instead. Particularly due to examples like Film/Maleficent, where the fairy is inarguably intending to cause harm towards the cursed characters, but not portrayed as generally evil.

I also think that the current description seems only tenuously linked to the idea of a Fairy Godmother and more about evil or malicious fairies in general, so the description should probably be clarified so it's obvious whether or not the fairy godmother parallels are part of the trope criteria or not. Note that godparents are people selected by the child's parents, generally because the parents believe the godparents will care for their child, while most of the current examples are about the fairy from Sleeping Beauty, who was not only not the child's godmother, but was deliberately excluded from her christening.

A harmful fairy gift given at a christening or to a newborn baby does play off the idea of a fairy godmother, but to me, that seems to be a plot trope about the "gift"/curse (the circumstances of its giving, and whatever consequences it brings) rather than a character trope about the fairy who gives the gift. As a plot trope, e.g., something like Christening Curse (or possibly Fairy Godmothers Curse, even though most examples will probably not technically be godparents), that could encompass both malicious curses from malevolent fairies (e.g., the Sleeping Beauty examples) and misguided "gifts" that end up being harmful (e.g., Lucinda from Ella Enchanted).

Aug 6th 2017 at 12:27:24 PM

I threw another bomb but will replace it with a hat once this has a better name.

Aug 7th 2017 at 10:33:38 AM

Lilth, the villain of Witches Abroad, is an evil fairy godmother who thinks she's a good fairy godmother because she gives people fairy tale lives, whether they want them or not.

Sep 7th 2017 at 11:11:38 PM

Surprised this wasn't mentioned, it's practically the Trope Codifier.

  • Sherk 2 features the Fairy God Mother as the Big Bad. While posing as the stereotypical sweet, loving Fairy God Mother, she's revealed to be dark and twisted underneath. She wants nothing more than to dispose of Shrek and take away Princess Fiona from him, then having her marry her son Prince Charming. There seem to be no lows she's willing to sink to, from blackmail, love potions, and having Shrek arrested by the authorities.

Oct 19th 2017 at 8:29:06 PM

How much of a Curse does it need to be?

Literature.The Ordinary Princess: Amy is blessed with being ordinary, but others see it as a curse.

Wait... Is this about evil fairies in general? Or Evil Fairy Godmother in particular?

From Wikipedia - Fairy Godmother: Madame d'Aulnoy created a fairy godmother for the evil stepsister in her fairy tale The Blue Bird;

Oct 20th 2017 at 2:41:34 PM

What about Fairy Devilmother? Wicked Fairy or any derivative just sounds like The Fair Folk.

Oct 22nd 2017 at 1:23:13 PM

Devilmother sounds too esoteric...

Oct 22nd 2017 at 3:40:20 PM

Devilmother is an odd word. I know it's a pun on Godmother, but maybe we should be more clear and just call this Wicked Fairy Godmother or Evil Fairy Godmother.

Oct 24th 2017 at 9:29:22 PM

  • My Fair Godmother Series of novels has a fairy godmother in training. She's barely out of her teens (as fairies go) and treats having a God child like an inconvenience. Her magic tends to get her charge into a lot of trouble; she then abandons the human kid to fend for herself.

I'm not totally sure malevolent or wicked actually fits. Several of these faeries aren't mean and cruel intentionally. Some genuinely think they're doing good to the child.

Jun 5th 2018 at 11:04:41 AM

A few examples harvested from The Weird Sisters, of the mythology / folklore category:

  • In the "History of Troilus and Zellandine", an episode from the chivalric romance Perceforest  (France, 14th century), three goddesses attend the birth celebration of princess Zellandine. Lucina (the goddess of childbirth) confers health on Zellandine, the second, Themis (the goddess of divine law), curses her to prick her finger on a distaff and fall in a magical sleep; the third, Venus (goddess of love), promises that she will be released from Themis' curse.
  • "The Tale Of Norna Gest": At Nornagest's birth, his father invites three seeresses to foretell Nornagest's fate; of these the two elder ones make good predictions but the youngest curses the baby. The three women are introduced as seers, but the youngest one is then referred to as a Norn, and she pronounces a curse (not a prophecy).
  • Gesta Danorum: In Book 6, King Fridleif consults "the oracles of the Fates" to ask for how the life of his newborn son Olvar will turn out. He goes to "the house of the gods" where he finds three maidens who are sisters, of which the first two grant beauty, popularity and generosity; but the third one is malicious and rules that Olvar will be considered a miser. The text leaves ambiguous whether the three women are three seers, or the Fates themselves.

The Other Wiki has an article for this: Wicked fairy godmother.

Mar 5th 2018 at 5:45:38 PM

Minor grammar fix in the Once Upon a Time example.

Jul 8th 2018 at 3:19:14 PM

Fairy Godmother from Shrek 2 can qualify. Contrary to her name, she is only interested in providing happily ever afters that are to her own benefit, and even threatens to take away happily ever afters from those who refuse to do as she says (such as Fiona's father). She also doesn't provide good work ethics, believes Ogres don't deserve happily ever afters, and expresses her son's anger for him. She also attempts to force Fiona into falling in love with her son instead of Shrek.

Jul 8th 2018 at 2:20:39 PM

The Trojan War began when the minor goddess Eris was the only one not invited to the wedding of Peleus and Thetis. Where all the guests had brought splendid gifts, she crashed the party and rolled a golden apple reading "To the Fairest" on the floor, causing everyone to argue about who it was meant for. Eventually the three contenders were narrowed down to Hera, Athena and Aphrodite, and Paris choosing Aphrodite over the others led to a massive war and the entirely preventable deaths of many heroes.