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Anti-villain

3141 Views 18 Replies 15 Participants Last post by  The Originator
Taken from villians.wikia.com, anti-villain means:

Basically the opposite of an anti-hero. While the anti-hero often fights on the protagonist's team, but with selfish motives, the anti-villain plays a villain's game, but for what's at least in their eyes a noble cause. They may be personally more noble or heroic than an anti-hero but the means to achieve their ends are often considered immoral, unjust, even evil. Sometimes they may simply be a villain with gentlemanly qualities or a code of honor or some sense of justice. Anti-villains will occasionally side with their rivals (usually the protagonist) if a greater threat than themselves comes or it is in both of their best interests. Often also considered "grey" characters due to their moral ambiguity. Examples of popular anti-villains include Magneto, Ozymandias from Watchmen, Eric Finch, Benjamin Linus, the Jigsaw Killer, Francis Hummel, Kane from Command & Conquer and The Operative from the film Serenity.

We've seen anti-heroes (Austin and Orton) and know that, if pulled off correctly, they can be a big hit. I was just wondering if there have been any wrestlers who fit the anti-villain role... if not, do you think an anti-villain would work?

I think it could work but, like most things, would have to be done correctly. I would think that in order for it to work the wrestler would have to start off as a pure heel and really get the crowd to hate him. And then after a while of being in this role, have him slowly start to become less and less "evil" but still a heel (attacking good guys, cheating to win, etc.). Then I'd have it come out that the reason why he acts the way he does is because of a noble cause (maybe he promised his kayfabe dead wife he'd be at the top of WWE someday or maybe he's trying to become champ as quick as possible so his kayfabe dying kid could see him as champion before the kid passed away). Or maybe have it come out that he was always teased, picked on, made fun of throughout his entire life and he's just grown to hate people.

Anyway, those are just some thoughts on how to pull this off. What I'm more interested in is if an anti-villain could actually work. Thoughts?
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John Cena would have been perfect had they left him in Nexus.
 

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right to censor did this. heelish acts for noble reasons.

also jericho turning heel against hbk. he was basically highlighting hbk's dishonesty and gamesmanship, which got him booed.

and lastly i'll nominate punk. he's trying to gain justice on orton for an unprovoked attack 2 years ago.
 

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Three great examples, Johnny.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Very good examples, Johnny.

I guess I was thinking thinking that an anti-villain would have to be sympathetic but you're right, those were all examples of anti-villains who really weren't that sympathetic in the crowds' eyes.

I also think Sheamus has the potential to become an anti-villain. During the strong Nexus run, Sheamus was still clearly a heel but Nexus was an even bigger threat. I can't rememeber if Sheamus ever teamed up with Cena or Orton or any other face to take on Nexus but if he did I guess that would have qualified him as an anti-villain. And with the losing streak he's currently going through, I think WWE has the potential to turn him into a anti-villain in that people feel sympathetic towards him.
 

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What about Sean O'Haire back in the day? He did some awesome video package promos while he was on Smackdown

Edit: Okay so I was sorta wrong, but the gimmick itself was brilliant. Here's a link to one of his promos.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4XDtXARTXwA
 

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Bob Backlund back in 1994 was a great anti-villain. He wanted to educate the masses! Also, Kurt Angle was somthing of an anti-villain. He encouraged people with his "Three I's" but came across as preachy. Also, Mohammed Hassan started off as an anti-villain. He wanted to point out America's racism towards the Arab American community but ended up just getting booed.
 

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How about kurt angle in 01, siding with the alliance looking like a sellout and a bad guy only to turn out to be a mole and be on the WWFs side all along? Does that one count?
 

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Ludwig Borga would fit. IIRC, he came in protesting environmental damage caused by US companies or something like that.
Yeah, Borga was an environmentalist who hated the way that America was damaging the world. He should've been more successful than he was. I liked Borga.
 

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William Regal could be an example of an anti-villain. He used to atleast come across very noble, perhaps even regal, if you'll pardon the pun. ;) His cheesy grin and waving to greet the crowd, only to receive a lot of booing, was great!
 

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You people are blind.Cena is one of the biggest anti-villains in the history of pro wrestling.His goals are benevolent but he's fulfilling them by dumbing everything down,making everything simplistic,shoving cheap colorful merch,relying on support of simpletons and lesser minded population (children) for profit,representing himself as some kind of blue collar average Joe when in fact he's a product of a billion dollar corporation.Same goes for Hogan.
 
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