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  • Remember Fight Club's Tyler Durden? Of course. Everyone in the real world loved him and wanted to be him (which is delicious irony), because he's good-looking, strong and charismatic. So he became a cultural phenomenon, but the obvious nuttiness was overlooked.
  • Hannibal Lecter from The Silence of the Lambs. Exacerbated by prequel Hannibal Rising, which turns Hannibal from a Serial Killer to a vigilante on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge with a Freudian Excuse for his cannibalism.
  • The blind poet Milton created the official King of this trope, Lucifer/Satan, in his epic Paradise Lost.
    • Somewhat averted though, as the author deliberately portrayed him sympathetically. It's more a case of Milton giving Satan an Alternative Character Interpretation.
      • Or just making him incredibly charismatic and allowing him to present his own account of his fall. What better way to show the seductive power of evil than by making the greatest villain in Christianity actually seductive to the reader? However he was not intended as entirely sympathetic, even he points out his Motive Decay, finally he just wants to upset God by causing the Fall of Man.
  • Inheritance Cycle
    • Murtagh has a vast following in the fandom. He's frequently referred to as the "real hero" of the Cycle. Please note that this didn't apply until after his Face–Heel Turn.
    • Galbatorix and Sloan. Galbatorix has hardly done a single heroic thing in the whole series. He appoints sociopaths as his generals and he has human-eating beasties do his bidding. To those who give Eragon the Ron the Death Eater treatment, Galbatorix is a hero. Sloan is somewhat more justified because he did wrong only to save his daughter; even Eragon gave him some respect in the end.
  • Mrs. Coulter and Lord Asriel in His Dark Materials. Granted, they're AntiVillains, but many people are willing to completely ignore the questionable, cruel, and downright evil things they have done.
    • Admirers of Asriel in the film canon can almost be excused; the one truly inexcusable thing he does, literally sacrificing his daughter's best friend to open the gate between worlds, was shifted to the (then) as-yet-unmade (and subsequently cancelled) sequel.
  • A Song of Ice and Fire.
    • Petyr 'Littlefinger' Baelish. Charming, handsome, witty, always cheerful and a Manipulative Bastard with Chronic Backstabbing Disorder to boot. His ultimate goals are rather unclear, as is just how much of the anarchy and war that dominates the books has been orchestrated by him, but he has taken credit for the majority of it and its implied to be little more than Despotism Justifies the Means. Whilst the character is definitely subject to Alternative Character Interpretation and has many hidden depths to his personality, corners of the fandom treat him like a divine saviour whose goals are all working to the benefit of the small folk, the people the wars have screwed over the most, partially because he is looked down on because of how minor a lord he is. Not to mention, they also "forget" how he forces unwanted kisses on his teenage niece-by-marriage Sansa Stark, his disciple and possible candidate for Queen, how he personally murdered his wife, Lysa Arryn (who had, admittedly, raped him when he was young, and was responsible for the deaths of Jon Arryn and Sansa's father Ned Stark and how he forced an 11-year-old girl Sansa's friend, Jeyne Poole into prostitution, then sold Jeyne into marriage to a Sadist.
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    • As it turns out, there is also a small portion of the fandom that has decided, against all evidence, that Cersei Lannister is a tragic heroine trapped in abusive relationships with Jaime (in which she is the abuser) and Robert (more true, though the abuse still is two-way, and Robert also feels trapped), ignoring her episodes like basically sexually exploiting her weak-willed cousin Lancel because he looks like Jaime; additionally her love with Jaime is implied to stem from narcissism. While it's true that her life hasn't always been a bed of roses, this doesn't even come close to absolving Cersei of guilt for the monstrous crimes she herself has committed. Her love for her children seems possessive, to the point she allows Joffrey to satisfy his cruelty without being disciplined, meaning he ends up as one of the most monstrous and incompetent Kings to ever sit the Iron Throne.
    • Sandor "The Hound" Clegane gets this from time to time himself. Granted, he does go through considerable Character Development, along with a Freudian Excuse and later characterization as an Anti-Villain with shades of The Atoner, even. However, despite his protective attitude towards both of the Stark girls, he's still a violent Jerkass up until the end. It's still relatively easy to find the fangirls romanticizing the scene when he was contemplating forcing himself on Sansa, and that pesky incident of him killing a child tends to go ignored.
    • Some people, including D&D are convinced Renly Baratheon would have made a great King due to his friendly, amiable nature and it was a tragedy he died. Some people will even treat any criticism of Renly as homophobic even if the criticisms have nothing to do with his sexuality. Renly certainly plays up that image in public, but in private shows himself to be vain and sleazy, never showing any ruling skills outside of good PR, basically being just a Yes-Man on the Small Council of Robert Baratheon, and spending months just enjoying himself with tourneys and parties while the Seven Kingdoms are being torn apart in war. The idea he'd be good to the smallfolk is challenged by the fact he is starving King's Landing into submission. His kindness in appointing Brienne is really because he sees her useful, behind her back he mocks her for her unattractiveness. As for being The Charmer and the idea that many of the lords are supporting him because they think he'd make a good King, Mace Tyrell only seems to support Renly as it will make his daughter Margaery Tyrell Queen, as shown by the fact that when Renly dies the Tyrells support the monstrous Joffrey so Margaery can be Queen. Despite people giving Stannis criticism for killing Renly, it is quite clear Renly intends to kill the older brother who protected him when he was a child from the Tyrells, due to Stannis' claim being superior, and shows no remorse over this, while Stannis is clearly upset over Renly's death and it is implied he isn't consciously aware of his role in this. In Renly's favour though is the fact that among the various horrible people vying for power he doesn't seem to be anywhere near the worst and his relationship with Loras did seem generally loving.
    • Tywin Lannister has a fair amount of fans, who admire his talent for scheming and take as Word of God his brother's assessment that while a harsh man, he was no harsher than necessary, and acted for the good of the family/realm. The "no harsher than necessary" goes out the window when we learn he once ordered a gang-rape of 14-year-old girl to punish his son, instead blaming Tyrion even though Tyrion was a child who was pressured into this by the main authority figure in his life. Regardless of any positive outcomes of his actions, Tywin is shown to be totally unempathetic and treats everyone as pawns in his current scheme. He may have been upset about his beloved wife Joanna dying in childbirth, but that doesn't justify his horrible treatment of Tyrion, refusing to name him heir to Casterly Rock, treating him as an embarrassment to the family for being a dwarf, and leaving Tyrion permanently damaged with his cruel treatment. Moreover, the circumstances of Tywin's death at Tyrion's hand basically imply that he was just a hypocrite, and that Tywin's adoring brother Kevan was deluded by love for his brother into seeing good that wasn't there. In fairness, Kevan and Genna knew what Tywin was, they just loved him for being their brother.
      Genna: Every little girl needs a big brother to protect her, and Tywin was big even when he was little.
    • There are people who believe Roose Bolton is a noble Lord who loves his family and is doing what is best for the North, and that the Red Wedding was justified as it brought peace to the realm, with Roose ruling the North. However while Roose may say "A quiet land, a peaceful people", he clearly abuses his power, his philosophy more being do horrible things but keep up a good image, such as raping women on his lands. He even allows his bastard from one such incident, the monstrous Ramsay Snow/Bolton, to go round terrorising the North, his objection to their actions not being because of the horrible stuff they do but that they're not hiding their atrocities like Roose is. Despite Ramsay quite probably poisoning Roose' legitimate son Roose doesn't do anything about it due to the stigma about kinslaying... but seems ultimately to not care how Ramsay's evil will bring about the end of House Bolton. And the idea Roose was bailing on Robb's lost cause for the betterment of the realm? A lot of people have concluded from Roose' military decisions that he was sabotaging Robb's campaign from the start and was thus responsible for Robb losing his chance to defeat the Lannisters.
    • The minor "Big" Walder Frey is gaining a following, partially due to the influence of the Tumblr writer Poor Quentyn, who called them his "favorite minor character" in this post. Big Walder at a young age is plotting to become Lord of the Crossing despite being very low in the line of succession (he's the son of Lord Walder Frey's 13th son), implying he means to murder a lot of relatives. Its almost certain he stabbed his cousin "Little" Walder to death to move up the line of succession, even though they were both about 9. However Big Walder still comes across as fairly likable, considering how unlikable most of the Freys ahead of him are. While Little Walder was constantly portrayed as a bully and was becoming worse over ADWD, Big Walder shows a nicer side in ADWD, being one of the few people who's kind to Theon, and, as Poor Quentyn notes, there is something comical about a child going on about how they'll be a Lord.
  • Tales of MU:
    • Puddy. Despite knowing pretty much nothing about her backstory or inner thoughts, her fans on the story's forum seem absolutely certain that she had a rotten home life and that this makes her a Jerkass Woobie who just needs a hug. Don't mind her various assaults on the hero, her attack on the series' actual Woobie, or her abusive and bigoted attitude.
    • "The Man". He's only appeared in three short flashback stories involving the protagonist's mother as a child. In the first one, he nearly drowns her. In the second, he tries to seduce her. In the third, he impregnates her at the age of 15 and is confirmed as a Man Eating Demon. The reader reactions range from "Damn, he's smooth!" to "Let's wait to see some real evil before we judge him."
  • Joren from Tamora Pierce's Protector of the Small quartet got this for a while - in canon, he's radiantly beautiful to the point of being a Pretty Boy but also petty, bullying, sadistic and homophobic. He exists to bully the heroine, stage a few hazings, half-assedly attempt to befriend her and die in a closet. He's received the Draco Malfoy treatment in fanfiction quite a bit, when he's written about at all. Despite how this would probably disturb the author resoundingly, he's usually paired off with the heroine.
    • "Die in a closet" is understating it massively. He died in the Chamber of the Ordeal, a semi-divine judge of the moral/emotional strength of knight candidates. He's not only spiteful and spoiled but too brittle to survive a knight's true test.
  • Raistlin Majere of the Dragonlance novels may qualify as this, although he's been a protagonist in some of the novels. He's definitely evil and creepy, yet he has a massive collection of fangirls.
  • Heathcliff in Wuthering Heights has received this treatment over the years, having become something of an archetype of the tortured-but-dashing Gothic Romantic Hero With A Heart Of Gold, up there with Mr. Darcy from Pride and Prejudice and Mr. Edward Rochester from Jane Eyre. This completely overlooks the fact that, within the novel, he's presented as a repellent, violent, and obsessively vindictive bully who spitefully destroys everyone who ever looked cross-eyed at him... and then, when they're dead, immediately does his best to destroy the lives of their children instead. Emily Brontë may have foreseen this reaction when she created Isabella Linton, a silly teenager, who insists on perceiving Heathcliff as a Gothic Romantic Hero even though everybody around her tells her he isn't. It takes him hanging her pet dog before their elopement and then a few months of an abusive marriage to get this idea out of her head.
  • Discussed In-Universe in Thomas Hardy's The Return of the Native, when describing Eustacia Vye, the narrator mentions "At school, she used to side with the Philistines in several battles, and had wondered if Pontius Pilate was as handsome as he was frank and fair." Though the point is this is probably to show us that Eustacia is a Villain Protagonist and we're not meant to sympathize with her.
  • William Hamleigh in Pillars of the Earth, a spoiled and sadistic noble, whom, when his peasants cannot pay their taxes, rapes their wives and daughters as compensation. For some reason, certain fangirls wish that their fathers couldn't pay the taxes so they could suffer the same fate.
  • Dracula pretty much popularized the concept of Vampires Are Sex Gods. Which is thoroughly disturbing considering in the original novel, he was never portrayed as anything other than a hideous monster devoted to killing everyone and everything. That there is an undercurrent of sexuality to the novel is undeniable, but Dracula himself tends to be presented more as "creepy sex offender" than "brooding yummy sex hunk".
  • Cthulhu. Because an enormous, octopus-faced Eldritch Abomination who's waking causes insanity and death would totally be a benevolent ruler to us.
  • Most of the males in the Black Jewels series fit this trope. Daemon and his father Saetan are literally written to be walking sex, and are given sympathetic backstories and valid reasons to be total bastards. But they're still murderers.
  • Several villains from Warrior Cats:
    • Tigerstar gets some of this, but it's actually somewhat understandable. His charisma, grandeur and overall Manipulative Bastard personality make it hard not to enjoy him as a villain. Some fans, however, do take it a bit far by trying to justify his actions with his troublesome childhood that was revealed in Bluestar's Prophecy.
    • Then there's Scourge, the leader of BloodClan. His fans tend to come in two varieties: Those who think he's a badass, and those who pity him due to his rough childhood. However, the latter group is mostly made up of Misaimed Fandom - the author's note included in The Rise of Scourge specifically says that in writing the story they were trying to explain Scourge's evil behavior, and establish him as a Foil to Firestar, not justify what he did. In fact, when Scourge's abusive siblings - Socks and Ruby - come to Scourge after being abandoned by their owners, Scourge seems to have gotten over their bullying enough to simply have them chased away, rather than getting any sort of revenge on them. The fact that he continues to be evil despite having got over what originally made him one shows that his rough childhood doesn't excuse him for his atrocities.
    • Hawkfrost, Tigerstar's son, mostly for Evil Is Cool/Evil Is Sexy reasons.
    • Breezepelt gets it occasionally, largely due to his status as Jerkass Woobie: His bratty behavior comes from Crowfeather's lack of commitment or compassion. However, even after he turned to attempted murder to get back at everyone he felt had wronged him, fans still cling to his Freudian Excuse.
    • One of the few villains of the Power of Three series, Ashfur tried to get revenge on Squirrelflight, who rejected him as a mate a year ago, by killing her supposed kits Hollyleaf, Lionblaze and Jayfeather in hope that he would cause her the same pain that she caused him when she rejected him. Opinions remain divided across the fanbase on whether this was justified or not. However, some manic supporters of Ashfur try to paint him as a helpless victim, and even go as far as portraying Squirrelflight as a villain. Even worse, some of them even wish that he had been successful in killing the threes kits.
    • Mapleshade gets this too due to having been exiled from ThunderClan for having a RiverClan mate, then getting kicked out of there as well when the kits drown. Despite this, though, she subverts this trope because she said that she earned her place in the Dark Forest and calls herself an irredeemable bitch.
  • To a certain extent, Thrawn from the Star Wars Expanded Universe. Yes, Timothy Zahn made him and the other Imperials complex and generally admirable. He wasn't evil, not black-and-white. But he was very ruthless, pragmatic, and above all, Imperial. He wasn't above You Have Failed Me, even if he needed more of a reason and was more forgiving of crew who weren't at fault. He lied, he was willing to hand Leia and her unborn twins to Joruus C'baoth, and he kept the Noghri in indefinite servitude with the lie that when he finished repairing their homeworld, they'd be free. Often, though, he's portrayed purely as someone who did what he had to do and chose to become a Necessary Evil.
  • The author of The Pendragon Adventure may have made Saint Dane too magnificent for his own good. While he isn't described as particularly attractive in his default form, it's become strangely common for fanart to depict him as a lithe Pretty Boy. Add that to his indisputable charisma, and a disturbing amount of fans have turned him into a figure worthy of support and admiration, despite his active attempts to drive all worlds to destruction so he can remake them to his liking, and the thinly-disguised sadistic pleasure he takes in doing it. This might explain why the later books stress those parts.
  • Senna Wales from the Everworld series. She's attractive and super-intelligent. She also gets a Villain Episode in the ninth book of the series, dedicated to exploring her personality and past, that gives her a Freudian Excuse and paints her as more of a Jerkass Woobie than a straight-up villain. Of course, most of her fans fully embrace that she's sick and twisted and just decide to root for her anyway.
  • Visser Three in Animorphs is considered an insane, homicidal Psycho for Hire even by the standards of a race of conquering brain slugs. An early book revealed that he acquired the form of one of his species's natural predators solely for the purpose of cannibalizing his underlings. He also had a success rate to make Cobra Commander blush. However, a bizarre number of fanfics tend to treat him as being far kinder, smarter, more conflicted, and fairer than he ever was in the books, often with him suddenly developing an attraction for a beautiful woman. This is mainly due to him being somewhat more Affably Evil in prequel books, and possibly no small amount of Evil Is Sexy.
  • Luke from Percy Jackson and the Olympians. It doesn't hurt that canonically he has a main character, a major support character, and a God all trying to prove that he can be redeemed.
    • In The Prayer Warriors, Luke joins the Prayer Warriors much like Draco Malfoy does. Amusingly enough, in The Evil Gods Part 2, Thalia (who, like the rest of the Percy Jackson cast, is out of character), maintains that Luke can't possibly be the traitor they're looking for.
  • Redwall's vermin sometimes get this, though in their case it's less "In Leather Pants" than "Posing For Cuteness Overload", except among certain sections of the Furry Fandom. Yeah, the woodlanders are prejudiced against them, but that that might be because the vermin attempt to eat them at every opportunity.
    • Though it's not so much the fans blame the "Woodlanders" for being racist, many fans blame the writer for making both sides Black and White Morality in the first place. Which why is why most Fan Fiction has good vermin or evil woodlanders. This seemed to even be Flanderized. As in the second book, a group of heroes find the corpse of a vermin and give him a honourable burial, while much later books the same scenario leads to younger generations of heroes saying, "He's evil, why should we care?"
  • Many Janeites dislike the quiet, shy, timid Fanny Price of Mansfield Park, atypical among Austen's otherwise sassy, witty, Deadpan Snarker heroines. Consequently, many critics are drawn to the Mary Crawford and somehow claim she actually has the personality more typical for Austen's heroines. Because Elizabeth Bennet, Elinor Dashwood, and the rest all considered love secondary to money in marriage, would try to persuade a friend to marry a man she doesn't love, and would callously wish for someone's ill older brother to die so that he would get his inheritance and therefore be rich enough to marry, right?
    • While it doesn't excuse her actions, some of the love for Mary probably comes from a few kind moments where she comforts Fanny after everyone harasses her.
  • All of the Feanorians from The Silmarillion sometimes fall prey to this. They do have redeeming qualities, but they're still definitely not complete innocents, what with having slaughtered many innocent people over jewelry:
    • This is most common with Maedhros and Maglor, who coincidentally happen to be the most sympathetic of a group. But acting as a Parental Substitute for Elrond and Elros and (briefly) contemplating a Heel–Face Turn don't change the fact that they participate in all three of the kinslayings, destroying the kingdom of Doriath and separating Elrond and Elros from their parents to begin with. Then when they are given the opportunity to repent of their murders, they try to steal the Silmarils again. Fan fics tend to portray Maglor in particular as a straight up good guy who was forced to do all these things against his will, if they acknowledge them at all.
    • Amrod and Amras are just as guilty of murder over the Silmarils as their brothers, but are invariably portrayed as cute Woobies in fandom. At least here it's somewhat mitigated by the fact that one of them wanted to turn back but was killed and the other does practically nothing his entire time in Middle-earth.
    • Feanor himself is universally lionized despite causing all the conflict in the first place, because, despite being a selfish and paranoid bastard who takes any disagreement or well-meaning advice as utter enmity, he is also an omnidisciplinary genius and complete and utter badass.
    • Most surprisingly, Celegorm and Curufin have quite a few fangirls despite, unlike their father and brothers, having no redeeming qualities whatsoever, trying to get their cousin Finrod killed in a Uriah Gambit, and attempting to force Luthien into marriage.
    • Caranthir only avoids this because most fans forget all about him.
    • An Elf from another branch of the House of Finwe, Maeglin, can also get this, though not as much. Despite the fact he desires his cousin (and its implied he intends to rape her considering these feelings aren't returned and first cousin marriages are illegal among Elves), tries to murder her 7-year old son, and betrays Gondolin to Morgoth, leading to the death of his uncle Turgon and many of his people. He does grow up in a secluded way and his father kills his mother while trying to kill him, but Maeglin is still one of the most villainous Elves, and unlike the House of Feanor actually joins Morgoth.
  • An in-universe example appears in The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. In the chapter where it's revealed that Injun Joe was dead, it's mentioned that the women of the town had been in the process of getting together a petition to get him pardoned (despite the fact that he committed murder and framed a man too drunk to remember the events of the night properly). As Twain notes, the women would probably have put together the petition if it had been Satan himself being arrested.
  • Irial from Wicked Lovely. Good looking and interesting, yes, but far from good.
  • Drake from Gone. In the course of four books, his exploits include: enforcing a brutal semi-police state, forcing a girl to call her autistic brother a retard to his face, leading an effort to encase the hands of several kids in concrete to prevent them from activating powers, holding several children five years or younger hostage, setting coyotes on said children, and torturing the main character while threatening to cause a nuclear meltdown and kill hundreds if the main character doesn't stand and take it. But he still has fangirls nonetheless.
    • Caine gets this as well, as does Diana. Diana is probably the most understandable, as even she has her limits and is less an outright villain than a morally neutral person in a difficult situation who does what's necessary to ensure her survival, but even she's rather manipulative.
  • Haruhi Suzumiya: Fujiwara, to some. Probably because he looks like this, though less shallow fans point to his somewhat sympathetic motivation and his backstory with Mikuru, though of course neither of these excuse the fact that in canon, Fujiwara has tried to kill at least two minors, and his first appearance has him kidnap another teenager.
    • He is hardly the only member of the Anti-SOS Brigade to receive this treatment. In fact, compared to the other three, he gets hit with this the least. Their Anti-Villain status notwithstanding, pretty much every fanfic featuring them has Sasaki and Kyouko portrayed as perfectly good and innocent characters who happen to be in way over their heads (even in fics set before Kyouko's Heel–Face Turn) and sometimes even Kuyou, who in canon is a creepy-as-hell Starfish Alien who is involved in Fujiwara's plot to kill Haruhi is thought of as an adorable Moeblob who just wants to be friends with the others.note  Ironically, Fujiwara's Moral Event Horizon crossing seems to have affected the fans, too: almost all of the fics that give him this treatment were written before The Surprise of Haruhi Suzumiya came out, in which he tried to kill Haruhi and is unhealthily obsessed with his "sister", Mikuru. After that, when he appears at all, he's portrayed as pretty much a Classic Villain.
  • Discworld
    • Jonathan Teatime from Hogfather seems to get this a lot.
    • In Carpe Jugulum, Pratchett deliberately subverts the trope at the end, when the dashingly gorgeous male vampire asks his object of affection, the young witch Agnes, if she'd reason with the mob to save him from the stake. Her Split Personality Perdita is tempted, but Agnes, whose qualifications as a Witch of Lancre derive from her being sensible and intelligent, remembers some of the evil things she's seen the vampires do. She tells him that she wouldn't just let the mob kill him, she'd hold their coats for them while they did it.
  • 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea gave us Captain Nemo, a Wicked Cultured villain who constantly crosses the Moral Event Horizon (even when he's ashamed of it) and hardly even notices when he kicks the dog. However, to the Misaimed Fandom, Nemo is the poster boy for Affably Evil, Cry for the Devil, Dark and Troubled Past, Troubled, but Cute, Well-Intentioned Extremist and even Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds.
  • Bohun from Sienkiewicz Trilogy ( from "With the Fire and the Sword"). His devotion to Helena is admirable, but lots of the readers forget that Helena feared him due to the fact that his actions were considered violent and unpredictable even by XVII century Cossacks.
  • The Chathrand Voyages pokes fun at this one. Greysan Fulbreech, introduced in the second and third books, is young and handsome, but slimy and amoral, and his one redeeming feature is that he doesn't have the guts to handle actual evil. He comes off quite negatively, though the real villains are much, much worse. In the fourth book, the history professor who's supposedly putting this story together at some point in the distant future mentions in one of his annotations being accosted by a student member of the "Greysan Fulbreech Self-Improvement Society", who's convinced against all reason that Fulbreech was the real hero of the story and the professor is deliberately slandering him. The professor, who was actually one of the main characters sent forward in time and knew what a louse the real Fulbreech was firsthand, is torn between amusement, exasperation, and disgust.
  • Takes place in-universe in Jane Austen's unfinished novel "Sanditon":
    With a perversity of judgement, which must be attributed to his not having by Nature a very strong head, the Graces, the Spirit, the Sagacity, and the Perseverance, of the Villain of the Story outweighed all his absurdities and all his Atrocities with Sir Edward. With him, such Conduct was Genius, Fire and Feeling. It interested and inflamed him; and he was always more anxious for its Success and mourned over its Discomfitures with more Tenderness than could ever have been contemplated by the Authors.
  • Invoked in-universe in the first novel of The Black Company series. Croaker, the main character and narrator, is the surgeon of the titular mercenary company and also an amateur historian who keeps the Company's annals. The Company works for an enigmatic female Evil Overlord called the Lady, and Croaker before long starts writing what amounts to bad self-insert Real-Person Fic starring himself becoming romantically involved with a romantically idealized version of her. Then Croaker meets the real Lady, and she scares the crap out of him, after which he regards the whole thing as an Old Shame (but it doesn't stop the other Company members from constantly ribbing him about his "girlfriend"). Then, in the last book of the initial trilogy, Croaker gets to know the real Lady better as a deeply flawed but human individual- albeit one with godlike levels of magical power- and ends up falling for her anyway. After she gets Brought Down to Normal and joins the Company herself, they're the Official Couple for most of the series..
  • The picture book The True Story Of The Three Little Pigs by Jon Scieszka reinteprets the so called "Big Bad Wolf" as just some unlucky guy with a nasty cold who is just trying to borrow a cup of flour from the the Three Little Pigs, who have been given the Ron the Death Eater treatment and are portrayed as highly inconsiderate assholes.
  • Sebastian from The Mortal Instruments gets this in many fanfics where his actions are at best given a poor Freudian Excuse and he is made a badder bad boy than Jace so they can have a love triangle. He was forced to do it by Valentine and/or was abused crops up a lot as an excuse. Other times writers will have him say he can't control himself or at worse ignore that he killed a child or completely hand-wave it. Some writers go as far as trying to make Jace a Ron the Death Eater by having him be a bigger jerk than usual to make Seb seem nicer.
  • The title character in Frederick Forsyth's The Day of the Jackal. How many people read the book (or watch the film adaptation) and cheer for the Jackal? Even though he's a cold-blooded assassin interested only in money, who murders several innocent people while trying to assassinate Charles De Gaulle for a right-wing terrorist group. Forsyth himself seems dismayed by this: "I was very surprised when readers said they loved him. He was the ruddy killer."
  • Though she's not typically cast as a love interest for obvious reasons, Les Misérables fics that sympathetically portray Madame Thenardier are fairly common. Many fans interpret her abusive nature to be a result of her husband abusing her, and while he's shown to be somewhat controlling he never lays a hand on her in either the book or the play and she seems to be a willing partner in his evil deeds. She also abandoned her eldest son to die in the streets, pawned off her two younger sons onto a criminal acquaintance for use in a child support scam, and mercilessly beat, starved, and insulted Cosette when she had custody of her.
  • Mr Darcy from Pride and Prejudice is an unusual example of this trope. The point of the story is to not judge by first impressions alone, and Elizabeth does discover that Darcy can be a genuinely decent and noble person once she manages to look past the unfavourable view she initially developed of him (and once he undergoes Character Development). However, many readers tend to extrapolate this to view Darcy as a borderline saint who was always completely misunderstood and perfect. In fact, Darcy himself admits that many of Elizabeth's initial criticisms of his character were, in fact, entirely justified — he genuinely could be a bit of a cold, unpleasant snob (albeit not nearly the hateful bastard that Elizabeth had convinced herself she was) and had to do plenty of soul-searching and improvement of his character in order to become a man worthy of her affections.
  • The Outcast's Queen, an adaptation of The Mahabharata, idealizes Karna to such an extent that his sexual assault of Draupadi is considered justified by all the characters because she said mean things to him.


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