What Does It Mean to Be a Villain?

This is a post that will make you reassess all you thought you knew about the good and the evil.


In books, the bad are antagonists. In fairy tales, they are the evil stepmother/witch. In society, they are criminals, and in an average classroom, it is the teacher. A definition for villain is (in a film, novel, or play) a character whose evil actions or motives are important to the plot. Motives. If we have harmful thoughts, in this story that we call life, doesn't it make us as bad as the people who act on them?

For example- a thief goes into a store and steals. He might have never stole before, but mustered up the courage to do so. How so? By pondering on it, the motive being greed, influence being selfishness. He takes what he wants without knowledge of store staff. As soon as he walks out of the doors, he can be labelled a thief.

What of people who saw but did not speak? Could they be labelled as accomplices? Would that make them guilty? Yes, yes it would.

Is it OK to be a Villain?

If a villain's evil deeds and thoughts are important to a story, does that make them a good or bad character? Many would say that they did something dishonest and greedy, but that is what keeps the book going. Without it, the protagonist would have no purpose. The plot without a climax. It would be like tea without a teabag, pressing copy if you are not going to click paste, ordering a big Mac if you are strictly vegan.

But that does not necessarily make the villain justifiable. It may make the story more interesting, but life is much more than amusement. Think of all those times you have longed and hoped for a more positive turn of events, in books and in real life. But the villain had made that impossible.

We don’t need negativity to be able to appreciate what is good. We do not need to jump off cliffs and hurt ourselves to appreciate having good health and well being. The villain is still the cause of problem and pain, no matter how central their role is to the plot.

The Villain may be closer than you Think.

Yes, you will always find villains in a story, but there may be more than we think. Sometimes you need to look closer to be able to decipher good and evil.  Apart from the perpetrator of the crime, there may be other evil-doers or evil-thinkers lurking around. Those who witness the crime but choose to keep silent.

My point is, we can unknowingly become villains ourselves if we support what is wrong by not standing against it.

How to spot a Villain? If you find a Villain or wrongdoer and do not try to stop them, then you will find that you have got yourself two villains, not just one.

Sometimes whether we react or not, or how we react directly involves us in the story. So it is up to us who we will choose to be, the hero or the villain.

We have to be careful and see whether  our actions are making us the villain.

There is often at least one evil person in a group of people. One person causing problems, one person with deeper and more sinister motives. 

True, it also takes one other person to stand up against the villain. Otherwise, you might inadvertently have two or more villains in that unfolding story.

If you can't see them, maybe everyone else can.

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