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Took A Level In Jerkass / Fan Works
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  • Jaune Arc, Lord of Hunger: Jaune Arc starts out as a well-meaning Nice Guy and gradually transforms into a Sociopathic Hero. Over the course of the story, he becomes increasingly aggressive and confrontational as the Dark Side influences him and amplifies the worst aspects of his personality. It starts with him appearing to have developed a temper and experiencing mood swings. Then, he becomes controlling and overly possessive towards his friends. Eventually, he turns callous and condescending towards anyone outside his team. This change is noticed by Pyrrha and Professor Goodwitch, both of whom become concerned that something is seriously wrong with Jaune and can tell that he's Not Himself.
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  • Ruby goes through this in Remnant Inferis: DOOM due in no small part to her Sanity Slippage. She becomes far more callous and aggressive with her teammates, glaring them into submission when they try to stop her from doing anything, and shows no more qualms about the idea of maiming people if she thinks it'll get results.

Death Note


Frozen (2013)


Harry Potter

  • Neville becomes more and more of a Jerk Ass Stu as Dumbledore's Army and the Year of Darkness goes on. Mostly this is due to the fact that he starts to see himself as a military leader and begins to expect military discipline from his underlings, while the said underlings still see him as their fellow classmate.
  • This happens in some Harry/Ginny fics, which emphasize Harry and Ginny's relationship, in part, by playing this trope straight with Ron and Hermione, despite the fact that both Ron and Hermione supported Harry/Ginny in canon. Particularly seen in the works of sbmcneil and Epeefencer, to the extent that Ron can sometimes border on Ron the Death Eater, and Hermione could greatly benefit from sensitivity training — from canon!Ron.


  • In Herding Cats, Tavros of all people becomes a huge dick after being successfully shipped, particularly towards Equius, Sollux and especially Aradia to the point where the two of them become kismeses. It happens as a result of his becoming Vriska's moirail, because she helped him become confident enough to overcome his own problems and be more assertive, but neither realised how over the top he was being. Everybody else has to point out that there's a difference between countering light insults from others and being absolutely horrible to them. They also have to point out that anyone who does something as horrible as blaming Aradia for his spine getting broken and tries to play it off as being assertive seriously needs a reality check. He gets put through the wringer for it.
    • This actually happens to more than a few people. After Eridan and Terezi get together, Karkat flips his shit and goes off on an angry rampage that lasts for most of the fic. In turn, Terezi continually throws horrible barbs at him, coming off as a huge bitch herself. Later, Tavros rubs off on Gamzee, who continually treats Equius like shit.

Marvel Universe

  • Carol Danvers from A Prize for Three Empires. Due to the level of trauma suffered, coupled with a gradual power loss, Carol becomes angrier, more mean-spirited and more unpleasant until a talk with her mother makes her realize that she is just making things worse for herself.

MegaMan NT Warrior

My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic

  • Chrono Reflect has Standard Fluttershy. This is justified, though: After her best friend and sworn protector Rarity dies, she's left with no one to save her from her bullies. This forces her to stand up to her bullies, but she lets her drive to never be weak again take things to far and she ends up being the biggest bully of Canterlot High herself. Fortunately Forest Fluttershy forces her to take a level in kindness after beating her, and she starts being nice again. ...Somewhat.
  • Navarone becomes increasingly unpleasant over the course of Diaries of a Madman, though this is acknowledged in-universe and also justified due to the bad stuff that happens to him over the course of the story. However, he does improve on this in a few areas as well.
  • Prototype: Equestria Strains has Pinkie Pie. She tries to hide it under her normally happy self, but it's clear the stress caused by the outbreak and losing her friends is taking its toll on her.

Neon Genesis Evangelion

  • The Child of Love: The more hurt and more distraught Asuka feels the harsher her temper gets and the harder she tries to push everyone away. After finding out she got pregnant she was shattered, so her behaviour became very angry, rude and overbearing, especially to Shinji whom she tried to push away as hard as she could precisely because he was the one could get through her.
  • The One I Love Is...: Shinji. Several times. When Asuka tried -clumsily- to seduce him he thought -for absolutely NO reason- she was just trying to screw Rei, so that he slapped her, called her names and treated her like dirt during several days. Later he insulted Rei and made her crying because she had not told him who was the Fourth Child. In his defense, he later admitted he behaved like an ass and apologized to both girls.

Phineas and Ferb

  • In Love the One You're With, Vanessa callously dismissed Gretchen as a “step down” for Ferb, effectively ensuring his crush on her is long gone.


  • In the story Sylvia the Sylveon, Alseides and Vapor, two of Sylvia's brothers, the former due to the disappearances of two of his other brothers (both of whom, coincidentally, Took a Level in Kindness) and later, the illegal fighting for which he is trained after he himself is kidnapped, and the latter due to both being mistreated by his trainer and not getting the evolution he wants.

Sherlock Holmes

Total Drama

  • Candy For Your Thoughts?: Duncan, Gwen and Alejandro. The former two got better. The latter got much worse.
  • Happens to Gwen in A Codette World Tour. As she gets closer to Duncan, she starts becoming more irritable and less friendly to the others. This culminates in her having an affair with Duncan behind Courtney's back and showing no remorse for it (including slugging Courtney in the face), as well as totally snapping at Cody's attempts to be genuine with her and screaming in his face that she'll never like him (which breaks Cody's heart and sending him into a serious depression). She gets better in the end after Duncan breaks up with her and she helps Bridgette defeat Alejandro, while also apologizing to Cody for losing it at him.
  • In Keepers of the Elements, Courtney starts off as her usual bossy, Jerkass self, but then goes up Over Nine Thousand levels when she makes a deal with Radcliffe for powers of her own so she can get revenge on Gwen.
  • Love Ain't Easy, It's Ezzy: Justin, especially when he interacts with or talks about Beth and Izzy during TDA. He eventually realizes what he had done, apologizes to Beth over the next season of Total Drama, and then courts her for real.
  • A TDA Love Triangle with Betty, Cody, and Gwenny: Geoff becomes a truly despicable guy.
  • TDWT Reducks Redux: Chris and Duncan are both much meaner and nastier than in the canon season, especially towards Ezekiel and Harold respectively.
    • Duncan mainly in his treatment of Harold, which is even worse than in canon. He's also much meaner towards Bridgette than in canon (although the two weren't really on good terms in canon either).
    • Chris McLean's even nastier than in canon, especially towards Ezekiel.
  • Total Alternate Island: Courtney just level-grinded in this. She doesn't take kindly to being eliminated first despite her team having good reason to, so she persuades her father to buy the network that airs the show. Courtney then uses her father's influence to force her way back into the competition and obtain numerous perks that give her a blatantly unfair advantage, all while claiming she deserves it "for how [she] was treated". Once back in the game, she spends most of her time trying to cause serious injury to Ezekiel over something that happened long before and blackmails multiple players into an alliance with her, threatening to destroy their lives if they refuse to help her win.
  • Total Drama 60 Club: Mark, as the series progresses, becomes more and more of a Manipulative Bastard. Also applies to the Tripartite Alliance and Noah becoming manipulators.
  • Total Drama Battle Of The Generations: Dave has become more aloof and underhanded due to the events of Pahkitew Island.
  • Total Drama Brains Vs Brawn Vs Beauty: Sugar, if it that's even possible. She chose to vote out DJ solely because she knew it would devastate Lightning and Courtney. Her sabotaging Lightning in the Final Five takes the cake.
  • Total Drama Domination: Lots of people.
    • Chris continues the trend of him getting meaner in each passing season. When Dara ends up injuring herself in episode 19, his response is to scream in anger at her, which makes Dara sob her eyes out.
    • Zoey of all people does this in just her last episode. She wins a bonus $50,000, her boyfriend Mike asks her to lend it to her so he can quit and pay for a look at his MPD...and she selfishly refuses. Made more jarring after Amy gave Sammy her $50,000.
    • Devin, another person who was really nice in canon, became a big jerk not long after Carrie broke up with him. After Zoey gets called out for her selfishness in her boot episode, Devin finally changes back to normal.
    • Carrie herself. She wouldn't give Devin a chance to even explain himself when breaking up, and while she finds herself dwarfed by Devin's behavior, she stays a jerk to the end, unlike Devin.
    • Brick, once he became a Drill Sergeant Nasty, though like Devin, he grows out of it.
    • Bridgette, like Zoey, becomes this in her boot episode. Geoff had broken up with her much earlier in the series, and had completely forgotten he had done so. Bridgette however paints him as a smug and annoying jerk, then calls all guys stupid when Brody, who she was seeing, admits he forgot he was in a relationship with MacArthur still.
    • Jo was already a jerk, but she became a violent sociopath, bordering on psychopath, in her last episodes, such as cutting Josee's hand with scissors and then immediately after cutting Brick's ballsack all because he played mediator in the girls' conflict.
  • Total Drama Generations: Downplayed with Noah. While he has his share of Pet the Dog moments, he's the most villainous contestant in the story, tricking Lightning and Sky into forging an alliance with him, only to immediately blackmail the rest of his team into voting off Sky with him, manipulating Lightning into thinking that Zoey orchestrated it afterwards.
  • Total Drama Genesis
    • Upon returning to the competition, Diamonique is more aggressive and manipulative, vindictive about being voted off and wanting to do the same to all the other competitors.
    • As the show continues to struggle with its budget and the ratings, Rhonda becomes more unhinged and enjoys torturing the contestants and trying to manipulate them for drama.
  • Total Drama House Party: After Osric is blindsided by Genesis, she becomes very bitter and spiteful towards the latter.
  • Total Drama Isle: Unbelievably, yes Chris McLean did. Not only does he own and run a friggin' coal factory now that is a health hazard to everyone on the island (and is stated to have killed all of the animals on the island), but he shows even less regard for the safety of the campers than before.
  • Total Drama Legends: Noah goes from simply being a sarcastic and apathetic contestant to a petty and manipulative bully, frequently harassing or playing mindgames on ally and opponent alike to throw them off, and pressuring Owen to help him sabotage one of their teammates, Jasmine. He eventually comes to regret his actions after being called out by Owen for his behavior.
  • Total Drama Letteredo: Ulric seems a lot testier and more critical of others here than he was in Letterama.
  • Total Drama Letterz
    • Chris Maclain started out a little mean but got worse at an alarming rate.
    • If the preview is anything to go by, Lavender. Not that she was particularly nice in the first place.
      • Subverted in that she's actually less hostile than before but is treated as a villain by the other campers anyway.
    • Similarly to Lavender, Gary was never the nicest guy before, but in the first episode he was outright rude and spiteful, particularly to Raven.
    • Jimmy went from a Cheerful Child to a brooding, former shadow of himself.
    • Due to the traumatic events in Letterama, Sasha became darker and VERY unforgiving of Kim.
  • Total Drama Nations: Emma starts of as a reasonable if not somewhat stern person, but after a while, ends up trying to kill three teammates.
  • Total Drama Redemption: Trent in the sequel. Due to the fact that Gwen dated Noah after she broke up with him, Trent has become a jerk to Noah and is acting cruel and angry all the time.
  • Total Drama Reloaded: In chapter 11, Ryuji Karasuma knew Taylor was in trouble and did not help her. What's worse is that he agreed to bring back help but in actuality, he left her to her watery grave.
  • Total Drama Return Of The Stars: Ilona acted a bit condesending to her teammates, particularly Mason.
  • Total Drama Revolution: Cammy, infamously, who starts out as an underdog nerd character and eventually devolves into Trick-obsessed, whiny, and outright murderous.
  • Total Drama Stranded
    • Chelsea once she learns that Matilda got Jojo before her.
    • Briony could also count; after being pushed over the edge, she snaps and tries to take revenge on everyone.
  • Total Drama Tiki Jungle
    • After School, Helga transforms from a shy, book-loving sweetheart to a caustic, grumpy load.
    • Come Elena boot episode, she's explicitly rude and bossy to her teammates and openly antagonizes Nic.
  • Total Drama Tokyo
    • In later episodes, Ari repeatedly tries to vote out Roz, her best friend, although Roz was no saint in the interactions either.
    • Thomas. He started out as a nice, somewhat goofy guy, and turned into a bastard who hated Puck and was extremely jealous of his relationship with Casey.
  • Total Drama Tweenabet: Flynn Fletcher was always crafty on the island, but in the Interludes, he's shown stealing people's things for ransom, refusing to help people from dangerous situations without pay, and having outrageous prices. It comes as little surprise that, by the final Interlude, everyone's become pretty tired of him.
  • Total Drama Tween Tour
    • Once Zora Flipperton starts going out with Jethro.
    • Jade Volt seems quite content to electrocute Jethro after his elimination with the knowledge that he has robotic implants. Granted, he was the direct cause of her elimination, but she's shown trying to attack him alongside Penny, so she's not exactly shown sympathetically.
    • Once Vinsun starts taking love advice from Craig and using it on Emily. Once again after she receives a certain phone call early in the merge.
    • Megan Paranor wasn't nearly as villainous early on as she ended up being.
  • Total Drama Underdogs: Duncan becomes a Jerkass to everyone over time, even to DJ and Geoff—two of his best friends in canon, who also try to befriend him in this story.
  • Total Drama What The Heck
    • For a little, when DJ turns on Cosmic River because he thinks the hippie is making him weak.
    • Duncan reverts back to being jerk—and then some—when he and Gwen begin having relationship issues.
    • Gwen outright lies and uses SG to better her own chances in the show.
    • After coming so close to winning and having to compete all over again, Heather has given up trying to be nicer, and has become a much more angry and oppressive.
    • Noah wasn't the nicest guy, but here he's willing to hurt people for seemingly petty reasons.
  • Ultimate Ridonculous Race: Jay, of all people. He holds a grudge against the Sisters for sabotaging him and his brother's chances in the first season, and unlike canon, is angry and vengeful. He goes as far as to flip them off.
  • Unbreakable Red Silken Thread
    • Duncan: He’s gone from the self-styled bad boy with a hidden code of honor and a nice core in the Total Drama series to a manipulative bastard who beats and uses his girlfriend of several years to help him with his classwork, do all the chores for their dorm, and sexually satisfy him at least a few times a day whether she wants to or not.
    • Gwen: She’s gone from a smart, independent Goth who was a caring person with hidden depth beneath her snarky façade to a battered housewife whose life revolves around Duncan and who reacts with contempt and bitterness towards anyone else.

Umineko: When They Cry

  • In Sillyhat Productions, George noticeably becomes more of a Jerkass over the course of the Chiru episodes. His introduction in Zangyou also features him trying to steal candy from a child.

Warrior Cats

  • Moonpaw in the fanfic, Moonlit Path Disloya L Hearts. She starts out spunky with a bit of sass. Later on, she becomes a selfish jerk. Her sudden dip in niceness is more understandable when you consider that she started going bad right after she receives a dream predicting her death.

Alternative Title(s): Fan Fiction


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