Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Heroes randomly hating other characters

I've seen a few variations of this trope.
  1. The hero(es) have a good reason based on past experiences with said character(s).
  2. The writer(s) show their bias by having most heroes treat this character like crap.
  3. To make the character(s) more sympathetic they make them look pathetic to make us feel for them.
Lately I've seen number 2 and 3 used the most. Unless number 1 is written well it has the same effect as the others: it makes the heroes look like jackasses. Their bahavior usually comes across as unnecessarily mean/cruel and makes them look like snobs who think their better than others. This was done with Booster and Ted in CTIC, etc. I've seen this done recently with Jason Todd when it makes no sense. It's usually lazy and is mostly a mean spirited side note in a story. 

Instead of having a hero be cool by maturely saying, "I don't agree with what you've done--what I've hear about you--but I'm willing to help." We get, "I don't want you help you, I hate you, even though we've never (or barely) had any panel time together. I'm going to judge you although I don't know you personally and I'll be as petty as I can about it."

That makes me dislike the heroes more than the villains. Don't get me wrong, I still hate out of character jerky behavior between characters that know each other well. This is just another pet peeve.


  1. Heh. Merely one of the reasons I have never been much of a Bat fan. He treated Booster and Beetle and Guy and Captain Marvel... and well... practically everybody terribly back in the old JLI days. And he was rude to Hal and Ollie... and the entire JLA too!

  2. Batman is a different kind of jerkiness than what I mean. While Batman was jerky in CTIC he wasn't mean for the same reasons as the other heroes. He was obsessed with OMAC and what the JLA did to him. Batman didn't want to be bothered especially since the mind wipe made him paranoid about all heroes.

    The impression with some of the other heroes was them seeing Ted as a loser and Booster as a sellout despite barely knowing them. Hal thinks Booster only cares about money and is useless without any evidence beyond his reputation.

    Batman has his own issues to work through and is a jerk because of that. He still knew what Booster was capable of and tried to learn from his mistake of being dismissive. While someone like Hal really doesn't know Booster on a personal level and just makes assumptions. Which is what I mean in this post, people that don't even know the person they don't care for and don't even try to get past their own bias mental judgements.

  3. Oh, good point. Hal is an idiot of course, but everyone pretty much knows Hal is an idiot. Superman was also occasionally obnoxious. Wonder Woman is usually pretty nice.

  4. Except when people get Wonder Woman wrong. Geoff Johns did for awhile and thanked people for correcting him and has improved her characterization. I like it when writers can learn from their mistakes and are cool about it.