Page Type: trope
The Ice King is defined as "a man (often attractive) who is popularly known for being cold and aloof". Similar to his female counterpart the Ice Queen, the Ice King is represented by what is considered to be "cold". The Ice King archetype is often an extension of Men Are Tough. Often so, the Ice King is portrayed as having a soft interior with traits that may percieve him as weak, inferior, or even effeminate by others, especially other men. Such as being more In Touch with His Feminine Side, being the Sore Loser nerd, being geninuely caring and compassionate, or initially having a Pretty Boy, attitude.
Becoming the Mask, the Ice King then begins to build a wall of ice to keep others from seeing his true interior personality. Subjecting him to appear and act more harsh and cold. It is not rare for an Ice King to have a Dark and Troubled Past, or been bullied or ridiculed for his original nature. Usually by his Abusive Parents, the Big Brother Bully, the Barbaric Bully, Gang of Bullies, or other groups. This usually leaves him bitter, resentful of others, and often feeling inferior. His exterior is a shell that helps to hide his weakness and pain Beneath the Mask. He may be popularly labeled as the Tragic Hero who has a Hidden Heart of Gold underneath the Hidden Depths.
The Ice King targets specific behaviors that gives him his title as the Ice King. The Stoic who hides his feelings and emotions with an empty gaze that may rival that of the Tin Man; exaggerates a "Don't You Dare Pity Me!" personality to keep from looking weak or having others see him as weak; a nature of Brutal Honesty to isolate himself by being harsh to others; a Cute but Troubled life as he may appear attractive, but underneath is going through war against himself and others; Safety in Indifference, believing it's better that if they don't care or feel then they can't hurt or continue to hurt; and finally, the signature Death Glare which he is widely known for due to the cold and dangerous look in his eye being a direct reminder of why he is crowned the Ice King. He is classified as being dangerous to love, similar to the Ice Queen, because he can't or won't love back.
Women are likely to label extremely standoffish and aloof guys as Ice King's as they refuse to give into their charms and advances unlike most men. "He will attract, but he will not allow himself to be wooed. He will steal hearts, but he will not return the feelings. He would be wanted as a romantic partner, but will answer, "I Work Alone"."
Anime and Manga
- Bleach: Byakuya Kuchiki is a Pretty Boy nobleman and famously powerful Shinigami who, in his introductory arc, dispassionately hunts down his own sister for execution and cripples Ichigo in a Single-Stroke Battle when he tries to intervene. Later episodes reveal his motives and true character, show how he struggles with The Chains of Commanding, and ultimately make him a staunch ally of the main characters, though he never quite loses the Aloof Big Brother act.
- Naruto. Sasuke Uchiha's father favored his eldest son, Itachi, over him. Not to mention that his entire clan was destroyed in front of him. Which transformed him into The Stoic and occassional Deadpan Snarker he is. Especially as he denies those who are attracted to him.
Film - Live Action
- Star Wars. Darth Vader was formerly a good hearted Jedi who now hides Beneath the Mask as a cold and ruthless villain. Love simply doesn't exist in his world.
- Sonic the Hedgehog. Shadow the Hedgehog watched the person he love die. And in retaliation, he pushed away care and compassion, and became a cold, violent, and ruthless person.
- Empire. Lucious Lyon was born in a Dark and Troubled Past that stereotyped men. Which caused him, at a young age, to hide Beneath the Mask as a narcissist and somewhat of a sociopath. Especially to hide his weaknesses as the CEO of Empire. Despite loving his wife Cookie, he often uses her for his own gains including his entire family.
Not to be confused with Ice Person or Ice King from Adventure Time. Compare with Cute but Troubled, Broken Bird, Good Is Not Nice, Real Men Hate Affection, Beneath the Mask, Dark and Troubled Past, The Stoic, Death Glare, I Work Alone, Don't You Dare Pity Me!, Becoming the Mask, Men Are Tough, Men Don't Cry, and Safety in Indifference. May overlap with Mr. Fanservice, Hunk, or Chick Magnet.
Alternative Title(s): Ice Queen
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