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Playing With / Byronic Hero

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Basic Trope: A character who is a melancholic, brooding loner with a Dark and Troubled Past, and is flawed, yet sympathetic.

  • Straight: Bob is a broken-hearted loner with anger management problems, and a rather dark streak that makes most of the other heroes wary of him. And yet some of the other heroes show sympathy for him.
  • Exaggerated: Bob is a nihilistic, violent misanthropist and yet the other heroes still show sympathy for him.
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  • Downplayed: Bob is fairly moody and unsociable, but the other heroes get used to him eventually.
  • Justified:
  • Inverted: Ideal Hero
  • Subverted:
    • Bob's brooding, dark exterior is a facade that belies a friendlier personality...
    • Bob is melancholic and brooding and refers to himself quite negatively. It turns out he is actually the most moral character in the series but not very personable and holds himself to impossible standards.
  • Double Subverted: ...he was having a good day.
  • Parodied: Over the course of a hot day, Bob, a man stuck in a soul-crushing job as a professional party inspector, sacrifices everything he ever held dear, including his home and his kill the man who took the last popsicle from the ice cream truck he missed.
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  • Zig Zagged: Bob switches between moods on a regular basis, going from being an idealistic and upstanding individual despite all he's been through, to being a vindictive, moody man, sometimes finding peace, only to go back to being wracked by internal conflict.
  • Averted: Bob has no more flaws than anyone else, and is not troubled.
  • Enforced: Bob was based off of a real world example - not including either his personal tragedies or indiscretions would not do him any justice.
  • Lampshaded: "There must be something biting you. Why the long face?"
  • Invoked: Bob, having just one lapse of judgment, is demeaned by the rest of his crew by being called an Emo.
  • Exploited: ???
  • Defied: "It was tragic that I ended up causing my sister's death, but I'm going to move on and become a genuinely good person, because that's what she would've wanted."
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  • Discussed: "Bob sure has a lot of issues, doesn't he? So what is it about him that makes us like him?"
  • Conversed: "How many bad things can that guy get away with before he's just a douche?"
  • Implied: There are scarce accounts of Bob that mention 'dark moods' and his determination.
  • Deconstructed:
    • Bob is a genuinely evil and dangerous character, not just misunderstood. His sympathetic traits blind the other heroes (and the audience) to his true nature. Even when he crosses the Moral Event Horizon, people still believe that there is good in him and that he's really not that bad.
    • Bob knows that giving a false story about his backstory will make people sympathetic to him so he can do whatever he wants with the convenient excuse of said backstory.
    • Bob is a pathetic, egotistical Smug Snake who is severely delusional and poses very little threat to the villains or to anyone.
  • Reconstructed: Then Bob goes too far, and realizes that his actions are causing the suffering of not just him, but those around him. Learning from these errors, Bob earns a Hidden Heart of Gold and tries to not commit bad crimes again, knowing there are people worse than him.
  • Played For Laughs: Bob is an incredibly brooding, Campy Large Ham Drama Queen who thinks it's all about him. Hilarity Ensues. Then he makes a Heel–Face Turn. Even more hilarity ensues.
  • Played For Drama: The near-constant romanticizing of his stoicism and renegade lifestyle betray the issues of a man in deep psychological and emotional pain that he believes no one will ever understand or truly sympathize with. At this point, the only thing keeping him from suicide is an iron dedication to his own principles.

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