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YMMV / Ramayana

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  • Angst Aversion: Combine with Ending Aversion, a lot of readers have this attitude when hearing about the epic's Seventh Kandha or Uttarakandha where all the awesomeness is undone and Rama banishes Sita, turning the original Earn Your Happy Ending story into a huge bummer in the name of enforcing strict orthodoxy.
  • Badass Decay: Ravana has been changed in his portrayal of being a Big Bad to an Anti-Hero whose one weakness was kidnapping women that were not his. To be fair, some passages of Valmiki somewhat lead to this interpretation. See Draco in Leather Pants below, which perhaps makes this one of the oldest ones ever.
  • Draco in Leather Pants: Ravana, believe it or not! Numerous alternative versions (Kamban's for eg.) show him as a king esteemed for his knowledge, fighting prowess and talent in the arts and he's had a place in Shiva temples in the South, thus making this trope Older Than Feudalism. (You can see this in Sita Sings the Blues.)
    • Sri Lanka, Ravana's kingdom, is also a real place, and the island has its own version of the Ramayana. Ravana was seen as a benevolent tyrant who helped Lanka flourish.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse: Hanuman.
  • Fanon Discontinuity: A number of scholars, readers and cultures reject the Seventh Kandha completely since the whole episode makes Rama - the "Perfect Man & King", look like a pushover, complete heel and total idiot, delivered a hilariously awful Happy Ending Override, unintentionally subverts much of the Aesop and reads like a bizarro "What If?" story. Modern day Hindi and adaptations tend to either ignore it and worship Sita and Rama as a One True Pairing or include the segment to deliver a giant What the Hell, Hero? speech towards Rama.
  • Unintentionally Sympathetic: Vali, the king of the Vanaras and Sugriva’s elder brother, who Rama kills. Vali is presented as evil for banishing Sugriva from the kingdom of Kishkindha, but considering what Sugriva did to Vali, he got what he deserved. Sugriva trapped Vali in a cave because Vali roared with laughter upon killing a demon he’d gone in to fight, which led Sugriva to believe that Vali had been slain by that demon. Then upon seeing blood (actually the demon’s) ooze from the cave, Sugriva closed it with a boulder instead of going in to see what actually happened, then ran back to his kingdom. Sugriva then took Vali’s wife as his own, and supposedly ruled as a harsher taskmaster compared to his brother. Vali was absolutely right to exile his brother. And for this, Rama kills him because the correct thing to do was to forgive a younger brother no matter what?
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  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic: Rama is a terrible husband. He only treats Sita's rescue as a duty. Furthermore, after Sita's rescue, he not only forces her to undergo the Agni Pariksha, but even after she passes this, he still exiles her because of an idiotic Jerkass who claims she's been Defiled Forever. Ultimately, he teats Sita so badly that she's Driven to Suicide.
  • Values Dissonance:
    • Rama is "forced" to banish Sita because of some false rumors spread by some misogynist Domestic Abuser washer-man. Rather than stand up for his wife and find a way to prove that she didn't mess-around with Ravana and thus make both the Kingdom and his family happy, he just wimps out and banishes her, thus giving credence to that washer-man's lie. This is apparently to show that a King should put Kingdom first, even if it means sacrificing his family note .
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    • Rama has a man killed because the man was of a Lower Caste and performing austerities and devotions that were meant for Upper Caste people. This is to show that Caste Divisions are super-rigid and meant to be enforced note .
  • The Woobie: Sita. Willingly got exiled for her love of Rama/Kidnapped by Ravanna. Was forced by the people to go through the Agni Pariksha. In one ending, she was exiled again by the very husband she willingly was being exiled for the first time for because he is ashamed that she is kidnapped by Ravanna. Her final fate in that ending is raising her twin son scared, humiliated and alone, all because events she cannot control. The poor girl can't catch a break.

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