Why People Never Get Enough of Bad Guys

Heath Ledger as The Joker in The Dark Knight 640

A movie or a TV show is nothing without its great villain. It’s the person that serves as a polar opposite to the hero and tries to take him/her down. Although heroes are all-time favorites, most root for the villain. It’s not the chaos they cause or the fact that they’re seen as evil that makes them the people’s choice. So what makes villains so attractive?

One category of films where every character’s a bad guy are mob and gangster films. Everyone’s a criminal because they’ve found ways around the law and that’s how they get paid. The regular ones buy flashy clothes and expensive cars, but the real pros save their money and invest in various businesses and before you know it they’re legitimate businessmen.

Remember Michael Corleone? He owned 5 swanky hotels in Vegas and each had a casino that brought him millions every year. What the audience gets out of this is that being organized and seeing the big picture always pays off in the long run. Why be a small-time crook when you can make big money and avoid the law by funding politicians and bribing judges?

The bad guy in any movie would shoot for the stars if it gets them what they want. They have a vision that they’re trying to turn to reality and if they try hard enough they succeed. Thanos would be an obvious example because he succeeds in wiping out half of the world’s population despite the odds being against him. Although Joker is a man who likes to watch the world burn and would burn millions of dollars just send a message he has a vision he makes real despite his death.

What makes Batman The Dark Knight such a great movie is Joker’s philosophy that all it takes is one bad day to make the sanest man insane. When pushed against those odds Harvey Dent became the thing he was battling his whole life –a criminal, a villain. And why do we still love the Joker more after introducing Gotham’s White Knight to the dark side?

It’s because what he says hits close to home. In the Joker’s perspective, everyone is a potential villain. Everyone has the potential to lose it. Most people are struggling every day to make a better tomorrow, grinding from 9 to 5 and all it takes is a bad day at work. You’re going home exhausted mentally and can’t wait to sleep it off and something happens. Something minor and insignificant makes you lose it and you’re a Joker now.

All in all, villains and bad guys are relatable because each person has a goal they’re trying to achieve and would love to get to the big picture as fast as possible. Villains are relatable not just because they look cool, but because they feel real. They might be aliens and whatnot, but the struggle they have gone through is what every man, woman, and child is going through every day.

  

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