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CowlRaven

Good Guy vs. Bad Guy

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Something that seems to bother me is the fact that in every story, no matter what, the good guy always wins. What if the bad guy won for a change? I think it would be an extremely interesting story if the bad guy won for a change. I know that this would probably lead to a lot of anger or irritation, because then it would mean the world is doomed and there's no one who can save us. But in every story, it's so easy to predict the ending; the good guy wins and the bad guy ends up dead or in jail. This seems a lot like some sort of ignored cliche if you ask me, so I was wondering what other people might think about this idea. Do you think it would be a poor story? Do you think the good guy should always win? Feel free to discuss. And actually, if you are pro to this idea, and like to write, feel free to write a short story, or an ending to a book where you would have liked to see the bad guy win (give credit to the author though.).

Edited by CowlRaven

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I think it'd be interesting to read a few books/stories like such. However, generally I don't go for "downers," and I think that many people are the same.

 

Books in which the line between good and evil is blurred - those are fun. Can't tell who really wins, or what side wins.

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For years I've wanted to write a book where the good guy fails.

 

Great (maybe just good) minds think alike, eh?

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I agree. I like to see good win but every once in awhile I want to see the bad guy come out on top. Which is why I like shows like CSI because they catch the criminal most of the time but every once in awhile the criminal gets away. Even House (doctors=good and death=evil) where they save most of the patients but some do die. I like a bit of both because I really think that it is unrealistic to think good can ALWAYS win.

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I've actually read a couple books in which the good guy loses.

 

(Not a story per se, but still) Impulse by Ellen Hopkins for one.

 

In 'Hero' by Perry Moore, the hero did win, but at a great loss.

 

I'll try to remember more, and edit this accordingly.

 

EDIT:

Apparently, I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream by Harlan Ellison.

 

Feed by M.T. Anderson is another kind of example of this.

Edited by brokenglass

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I've actually read a couple books in which the good guy loses.

 

(Not a story per se, but still) Impulse by Ellen Hopkins for one.

 

In 'Hero' by Perry Moore, the hero did win, but at a great loss.

 

I'll try to remember more, and edit this accordingly.

I Have no Mouth and I Must Scream also seems to end with the 'bad guy' winning...

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I honestly dislike the whole good guy vs. bad guy setup. >_> There's probably more than one censorkip.gif*** in your life.

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I've read more than several series where the bad guy triumphs, btu thats usually only one book in the series and in the long run the good guy wins.

 

Idk. It kind of upsets me when a likeable (and ONLY likeable) characters fail. so yeah, I guess it'd be interesting if the evil guy won, but only if you make the evil guy likeable!

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It's interesting, but needs careful handling. Admit it, you're going to be upset if you spent 300+ pages watching some guy on his quest or whatever, only to have him get up there and die.

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/shrugs

Lots of books I read don't have clear good and bad guys; the main character might be violent/destructive/something-ist, support torture/rampant killing/destroying the universe, have iffy ideas of ethics. Perhaps the <insert creatures/group/person> they're fighting against doesn't have these things. Does it count as a "bad guy" winning if the protagonist is harder to sympathize with than the other characters?

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It's interesting, but needs careful handling. Admit it, you're going to be upset if you spent 300+ pages watching some guy on his quest or whatever, only to have him get up there and die.

EXACTLY how I feel.

And like in Artemis Fowl (though I have to sayI dislike this series) the main character is EVIL right? So we spent the three hundred pages watcing HIM and not the good guy! (well there's more about Artemis than the good guy though the good guy is there for a long period of time dry.gif) but anyways, if we spend the time actually WATCHING the evil guy, then I think he should prevail. IF the evil guy's like...well, if we meet him last minute and at the end and he just like, sticks a sword into the good guy, its sorta pointless.

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EXACTLY how I feel.

And like in Artemis Fowl (though I have to sayI dislike this series) the main character is EVIL right? So we spent the three hundred pages watcing HIM and not the good guy! (well there's more about Artemis than the good guy though the good guy is there for a long period of time dry.gif) but anyways, if we spend the time actually WATCHING the evil guy, then I think he should prevail. IF the evil guy's like...well, if we meet him last minute and at the end and he just like, sticks a sword into the good guy, its sorta pointless.

Artemis Fowl really is not catalogable good or evil. He is more of a gray area.

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Artemis Fowl really is not catalogable good or evil. He is more of a gray area.

In the first book (first book ALONE) he's not too likeable. It's a token of Colfer's writing that you end up liking him anyway, mostly, but it isn't until the last chapter and a few very, very brief moments that give him any depth and any "gray." From the second book onward, he moved to lighter and lighter shades of gray.

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In the first book (first book ALONE) he's not too likeable. It's a token of Colfer's writing that you end up liking him anyway, mostly, but it isn't until the last chapter and a few very, very brief moments that give him any depth and any "gray." From the second book onward, he moved to lighter and lighter shades of gray.

By gray I mean he was never really a "good" guy or "bad" guy but a neutral. A mercenarie if you will. In fact I think that suits him perfectly.

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By gray I mean he was never really a "good" guy or "bad" guy but a neutral. A mercenarie if you will. In fact I think that suits him perfectly.

I know what you meant.

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I know what you meant.

Oh???? Then I understand you didn't like him much in book one and that he becomes progressively less bad as the series goes on but other then that I don't understand that post.

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I'm not much into good vs evil thing. I'd rather read about realistic people, with problems and different points of view. For example, one of the novel I'm working on is from the perspective of a German guy who enters the SS in 1933.

And he IS faithful to the regime.

 

In my actual series (working on the second book), there is no Save The World thing. It's about political changes in a medieval fantasy setting (without races, like elves, or such, only humans and shapeshifters), and how they affect the main characters. Each of them is different.

 

I'm really a bit tired of "OHM SAVE THE WORLD!!!!!" thing. I mean, really, WHY WOULD THE BAD GUY DESTROY THE WORLD???

It makes no sense.

 

Anyways, I'd love if the last Eragon book would end up with him proclaiming himself emperor, thus making him less of a hero, and more of the terrorist he really is xd.png

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1984 makes your downer ending look like sunshine and rainbows.

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That's an interesting opinion about books. I agree with 7Deadly$ins (I couldn't think of how to shorten your name), it would be kind of exasperating if this hero who was supposed to save the world just got knocked out of the story by some antagonist and then evil reigned.

 

Also, it depends on what you read. A lot of classics don't involve the good guy winning - or at least, it's not such a clear-cut victory. Like, in Charles Dickens's books, the protagonists always suffer heavy losses. And in those types of books, there's a reason why the good guy wins, like in To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee - it's to teach you stuff.

 

The skill of the author also affects how well the good-guy-winning is written. Like, in the Twilight series, the ending is just... too miraculous. And it makes you wish the bad guys won because the way in which the good guys won was sort of... lame.

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well still, I'd rather that if you have the bad guy win then yu spend three hundred pages watching the struggles of the bad guy and not the good guy, only to have the bad guy ending up running a sword through the good guy...

 

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I'm really a bit tired of "OHM SAVE THE WORLD!!!!!" thing. I mean, really, WHY WOULD THE BAD GUY DESTROY THE WORLD???

It makes no sense.

Lul, look at Time Compression from Final Fantasy 8.

 

The Big Bad is a Sorceress who wants Time Compression - the smooshing-together of everything ever and the end of all existence except for herself and apparently whoever she deigns to serve her forever.

 

An interesting spinoff of this concept is the Wheel of Time series. Though there is a Big Bad (the opposite of the very Creator), it's theorized that this one world, this story is just one playing out of a cycle in which the hero has to defeat him, and that in other times the Dark Lord won and that this cycle is never ending.

 

(Probably a very shorthand recount but close enough I'm hungry)

Edited by NixAyum

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Lul, look at Time Compression from Final Fantasy 8.

 

The Big Bad is a Sorceress who wants Time Compression - the smooshing-together of everything ever and the end of all existence except for herself and apparently whoever she deigns to serve her forever.

 

An interesting spinoff of this concept is the Wheel of Time series. Though there is a Big Bad (the opposite of the very Creator), it's theorized that this one world, this story is just one playing out of a cycle in which the hero has to defeat him, and that in other times the Dark Lord won and that this cycle is never ending.

 

(Probably a very shorthand recount but close enough I'm hungry)

Or FF9 where the bad guy wanted to destroy the world because he was dieing and thought the world didn't deserver to be there if he wasn't in it.

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That's an interesting opinion about books. I agree with 7Deadly$ins (I couldn't think of how to shorten your name), it would be kind of exasperating if this hero who was supposed to save the world just got knocked out of the story by some antagonist and then evil reigned.

 

Also, it depends on what you read. A lot of classics don't involve the good guy winning - or at least, it's not such a clear-cut victory. Like, in Charles Dickens's books, the protagonists always suffer heavy losses. And in those types of books, there's a reason why the good guy wins, like in To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee - it's to teach you stuff.

 

The skill of the author also affects how well the good-guy-winning is written. Like, in the Twilight series, the ending is just... too miraculous. And it makes you wish the bad guys won because the way in which the good guys won was sort of... lame.

How did the good guys win in To Kill a Mockingbird?

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Well, if you've ever read A Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket, the good guys don't win until the VERY LAST book and it's simply depressing to go through each one with the slight hope of a good future for the Baudelaires only to have it spoiled by Count Olaf. D:

 

brahma.

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