Which would make a more interesting character?

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DaHeckIzDat
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Which would make a more interesting character?

Postby DaHeckIzDat » May 26th, 2018, 5:29 pm

I decided to try my hand at writing a superhero story, but with a twist. In this story, if a hero uses their powers too much they'll go violently insane. The government doesn't want people to know this since superheroes have become such a huge part of our society, so they make a super top secret back organization that masquerades as villains, and kill heroes when they start showing signs of going insane. Innocent people almost always die in the process, and they're not proud of that, but they adhere to the "kill ten to save a thousand" mentality. The book opens with the main character facing off against his assigned target, the most powerful and well known hero who's ever lived. His plan a is to kill him in a fight, but on the chance that he can't do that he's planted bombs around a skyscraper in the hopes that bringing the building down on top of him will do the trick. Either way, he's going to fail to kill the hero, but which of these sounds like it would make for a more compelling character?

A. He's completely devoted to his mission and blows the building up, killing hundreds of innocent people to maintain the illusion that he's a supervillain. He then has to deal with the guilt for the rest of the book, especially since collapsing the building wasn't enough to kill the hero after all.

B. His guilt gets the better of him and he he deactivates the bombs at the last second, but in doing so loses his chance to kill the hero. Not only that, but he's put the organization as risk of being discovered when the world's biggest baddest villain apparently decided to grow a conscience.

ActRaiser
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Re: Which would make a more interesting character?

Postby ActRaiser » May 26th, 2018, 8:32 pm

That's an awesome premise. I believe you have a great opportunity to come up with a novel approach. Every hero eventually turns into a villain. In my humble opinion I would not make the main character a villain, but still use the same idea only slightly differently. Cool idea.

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DaHeckIzDat
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Re: Which would make a more interesting character?

Postby DaHeckIzDat » May 26th, 2018, 8:41 pm

ActRaiser wrote:That's an awesome premise. I believe you have a great opportunity to come up with a novel approach. Every hero eventually turns into a villain. In my humble opinion I would not make the main character a villain, but still use the same idea only slightly differently. Cool idea.


The idea is that the government wants to preserve peoples memories of these superheroes, which is why they pretend to be villains. That way the public can see them go down valiantly fighting for their safety, rather than being unceremoniously assassinated by a faceless hitman.

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scotland
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Re: Which would make a more interesting character?

Postby scotland » May 26th, 2018, 8:42 pm

This is neat.

It brings to mind a few comics I've read. They are different though, but I thought you'd like to know they exist.

1) Strikeforce Morituri - here Earth has been invaded by aliens, and the technology gap is overwhelming. A few people undergo a process (The Morituri Process) that has a good chance of them dying pretty quickly in a horrible overload of powers, but if they survive the activation of their powers (in 'the garden' - an arena of sorts), they go on to fight the aliens. However, they will die from power burnout at some random time, not to exceed a year. The loss of their friends, and other stresses make them go a bit nutsy as well. Another part of the gov't also tries to set up a parallel system, with even more horrible results.

2) The American - here there is a 'Captain America' type figure, but really, is a rotating cast of people all wearing the same costume. It build a reputation that this guy is amazing and unstoppable, but really, they are dying 'off camera' all the time.

3) Watchmen - the most famous example, which was made into a movie. If you haven't seen it, discussing it would have spoilers, but there is a similar argument going on. I've had some testy conversations about the actions of one of the prime movers of the story.

I think the 'villain' growing a conscience is more interesting, as well as avoiding any 911 related issues with readers. Maybe the hero is now off her rocker and people die (or are blantantly not saved and die, all on camera). Maybe the Agency is exposed, but maybe it just touches off internal power struggles. Maybe other 'villains' as well as heroes are hunting your protagonist, who slowly assembles a small team of associates. Eventually, things will come to a head at the end of Season 1.

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Stalvern
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Re: Which would make a more interesting character?

Postby Stalvern » May 26th, 2018, 10:11 pm

B, easily. It raises so many questions for you to work with as a storyteller, but the only question A raises is, "What if someone felt really bad? Like, really bad?"


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