Exclusively Evil

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Yep, every last one of 'em.
Do not offer them riches, they care not for your coin. Do not offer them surrender, they care not for victory. Offer them nothing, for they come only to murder.

A common conceit of the sci-fi and fantasy genres (and especially games of those genres) is the notion of not an organization, not a clan, not a city, but an entire race of bad guys who brag about how Evil they are. All of the racial members behave evilly, because - let's face it - Star Trek would've been really boring if Kirk had to interview every Klingon he met before punching them out. This may sometimes go so far that a Final Solution against the defined-as-evil race is portrayed in a quite cheerful light.

This trope is actually Older Than Dirt—are there any myths and folk tales that don't have some creatures that are portrayed as always evil? Naturally, its subversions have also existed for quite a long time.

How, exactly, these folk have unanimously embraced one ethos (especially one so detrimental to the survival of the group), when humans have been known to kill each other over how many fingers are used in a ritual blessing, is often unknown and inconsequential. When the ethos is justified, often the race is explicitly artificial in origin, rather than natural. Their nature is determined by the evil individual who created them as slaves/warriors/etc—thus dodging the problem that Children Are Innocent. This is often reinforced by having their society believe in Asskicking Equals Authority...and in this case, anyone weak (read: good) will be killed very quickly.

Expect the national dress to be Spikes of Villainy and black leather, the reason for keeping pets to be kicking, and their language to be the Black Speech.

The Defector From Decadence typically comes from this stock, usually with some qualifier or after having become an Ascended Demon. Having an ancestor from such a race usually qualifies a character's evil (or potential for it) as being "In the Blood".

It's quite common for a fantasy Big Bad to have an Always Chaotic Evil race at the ready to use as Mooks. It's usually justified as an arrangement among the various Powers That Be. The heroes are likely to be from races where good and evil are possible, to contrast their differences.

May be the subject of a Genocide Dilemma. This is Planet of Hats when evil is the hat. For evil professions like pirates and hitmen, see Villain by Default. When a fictional character (whether human or a member of another fictional race) wrongly and unreasonably believes that a fictional race in his/her world is this trope, it's a case of Fantastic Racism.

A member of a fictional race holding the same unjustified and false belief about humans would likewise be Fantastic Racism. For cases where humanity, aliens, or predators really are this trope, see Humans Are the Real Monsters, Aliens Are Bastards and Predators Are Mean. For a trope that includes cases where animals are Always Chaotic Evil, see Cats Are Mean, Wicked Weasel, You Dirty Rat, and Reptiles Are Abhorrent.

Be careful when writing these: may lead to Unfortunate Implications.

See also What Measure Is a Non-Human?, My Species Doth Protest Too Much, and Scary Dogmatic Aliens. Compare Lawful Stupid Chaotic Stupid. Contrast Always Lawful Good. Should not be confused with Chaotic Evil.

No real life examples, please; no group of people can be accurately described with blanket statements.

Add Examples, ya scum! Get crackin! If He catches you lollygagging, you knows what will happen!


Anime & Manga[edit | hide | hide all]

  • Most of the Saiyans in Dragon Ball were said to generally be barbaric planet destroying bullies. Goku (being a unique exception in which he fell and hit his head as a baby) and a few other characters are the exception rather than the norm. This is often overlooked by fans, which Akira Toriyama parodied in Neko Majin Z with the character of Onio.
  • The Mazoku, from Slayers. Given that they literally feed on negative emotions, they have a lot more reason to be this way than most examples of this trope.
  • It is justified in Mazinger Z: The Mooks are zombies revived thanks to cybernetic implants by the Big Bad Dr. Hell. Since he mechanized his brains, wiped his minds out to erase any memory of their former lives and any shred of independant thought and programmed them to be absolutely and unquestionably loyal and obedient, then you have they pretty much have no choice other than being Exclusively Evil.
    • Great Mazinger: The Mykene play with this trope. The Warrior Monsters are Humongous Mecha with the head of a Mykene soldier implanted in the giant mechanical body. Since the soldiers are indoctrinated to attack and wipe out anything non-related to the Mykene civilization, the trope is justified. On the other hand, the commanders of the army display different personalities and even honorable qualities (specially Ankoku Daishogun), and even though they are not portrayed like good, they are not portrayed like proud of being evil, but like a proud race of warriors want to return to the surface world after being forced to living underground for millennia.
    • UFO Robo Grendizer: At the beginning it looks the trope is being played straight, but finaly it is averted. Several of the Vegans are decent people and many of them are given redeeming qualities.
  • Combattler V: For a while it seemed the trope was being played straight, but it was ultimately averted. The Campbellians were attacking Earth were not representative of the entire race, but a rebel fraction led by leaders constantly indoctrinated their troops into believing it is HUMANS who are Exclusively Evil. The most part of the Campbellians were not presented as evil or harbouring ill will towards humans, and actually at the end Deus, Campbellians' true leader, came to Earth to stop Big Bad Empress Janera personally, and vowed he would help to rebuild Earth what Janera destroyed.
  • Ditto for the mazoku from Violinist of Hameln. There actually are two exceptions, but the rest pretty much feel that their calling is to torment humanity For the Evulz. (Sure, their whole race exists through magical power gained by consuming human blood and souls, but regular mazoku cannot extract it, so evulz still is the driving reason for their atrocities.)
  • Subverted in Chrono Crusade (although differently, depending on which version you're watching). In the manga, this seems to be the case at first (with Chrono being the only exception), but it turns out that the Sinners are more complex than that, and even among other demons most of them are simply following orders in a corrupt culture that can't even remember how they got that way in the first place, making them practically victims of a bureaucracy who simply refused to question WHY things were the way they were. In the anime, the Sinners are portrayed as more blatantly evil, while the rest of the demons seem contractually obligated to play "villains" for God in order to keep humanity in line, making them a bit more like Punch Clock Villains.
  • The crows in Princess Tutu are shown this way—justified because they're characters escaped from a fairytale. They're so evil that even their blood can affect a character's personality.
  • In Gundam SEED, you can pretty much count EACH and EVERY member of Blue Cosmos/LOGOS (and, to a lesser extent, Earth Alliance) an irredeemably evil, racist bastard, with the most likable person being a Brainwashed and Crazy super soldier who Shinn falls in loves with.
    • But since Blue Cosmos is, by the period the series take place in, very clearly shown to be an organization of such people, completely gone off track from its original purpose, this shouldn't be a surprise. LOGOS just exists to keep wars happening because hey, it's good for business. That confirms the Complete Monster status of Earth Alliance.
    • There's not a single decent member of the Zanscare Empire in Victory Gundam. That's even more jarring if we consider that most Gundam series usually try to depict war as shades of grey, without good or evil factions.
      • Not quite - the Zanscare army is usually portrayed as being heartlessly and irredeemably monstrous, but there are exceptions to that, the most outstanding example being Mathis Walker.
      • Perhaps the easiest way to understand why zanscare is so reviled is a) their brutality (there are a lot of death penalties, or even worse punishments) b) that there aren't any inspiring leaders capable of producing riveting speeches, something that Zeon has had more than any other faction. Instead, they rule by manipulating a woman who represents purity, thus not earning any favors from the audience.
    • The Veigans in Gundam AGE are all fanatically loyal to Lord Ezelcant without exception. Deeming the extermination of all non Veigans from their prized Eden
  • The New Blood, or, at least, those directly related to Sicks in Majin Tantei Nougami Neuro. For a long time, they intentionally bred so that the most evil would be the one to reproduce. Eventually, they actually became an entirely separate species, according to Sicks.
  • Lampshaded in Kyo Kara Maoh! After it is revealed to the main character that he is really a demon lord and must seek out his ultimate weapon:

Yuri: ... a holy sword that you need to defeat the last boss.
Wolfram: A holy sword?
Yuri: It's not?
...
Gwendal: Of course it's a demon sword!

  • The youma from Claymore, who live entirely to eat humans.And the awakened beings, whose nature is also to feed on humans, but are far more dangerous.
  • The Diclonius from Elfen Lied are suggested to be hardwired to cause destruction among humans, though their behavior may also be influenced by the inhumane treatment they received at the hands of humans.
    • Though, by the end of the manga, we find out that the Diclonus are descendants of the Oni from ancient times (with Lucy being the only true genetic descendant), and that their need to kill humans stems from their demonic ancestors genetically encoding them to want to seek revenge on their destroyers.
      • But, the man who believed that turned out to not be a Diclonius at all, bringing that whole origin into question. It was suggested that Lucy was just the result of a genetic mutation in her mother.
  • In Soul Eater, witches are genetically predisposed to cause destruction, and indeed, it forms the basis of magical power in most cases. There is one case where a witch's magic can only be used creatively (i.e healing), and she is an outcast because of it.
    • Note that this is really an in-universe belief in Soul Eater...when a character is found to be a witch and does a Face Heel Turn, it's her belief in this and that other people will instantly assume it that causes it, not an innate drive. Once other characters convince her that she doesn't have to be evil if she doesn't want to, it's actually shown that others are perfectly willing to be proven wrong and think her being a good witch is neat.
  • Hollows in Bleach are considered to be an entire race of evil spirits, driven to eating anything living or dead (including each other). Their more evolved "Arrancar" counterparts have been portrayed as having different dispositions, including Good (Nel).
  • The evil, thieving, drunk, cowardly, scumbag-y mice from Black Cat Detective.
  • Vampires in Hellsing are mostly like this. Good vampires, like Seras, are a very special exception. It is not clear if the transformation to a vampire brings out the worst of person or if all vampires are all irredeemably evil. It is possible that since the survival of a vampire requires killing people for blood and souls at some point all vampires simply give up to their blood lust. At one point one vampire even comments on how he and his comrades can never enjoy things normal people enjoy, but are forced to live a life of a monster.
    • Most of the vampires we see in the series were Card Carrying Villains before becoming vampires, being vicious war-mongers. Who were also Nazis. In their case, becoming vampires didn't turn them evil. It just gave them fangs.


Comic Books[edit | hide]

  • The Wolrog Empire in Strontium Dog is composed entirely of Neutral Evil baddies.
  • Torquemada in Nemesis the Warlock claims that all aliens are Exclusively Evil, although even he privately acknowledges that this is a lie given to justify the extreme Fantastic Racism of his regime. The series, in fact, spent much of it's early run subverting the common application of this trope to the more grotesque aliens.
  • Subverted in DC Comics of the early-to-mid Silver Age. That era almost invariably depicted alien cultures as having made a choice between Good Republic and Evil Empire. Every alien race was assumed capable of both "good" and "evil", and "evil" regimes could always be overthrown, while "good" ones could always be subverted.
  • Marvel Comics has several examples:
    • The Skrulls, the most recurring evil race and, in fact, the first one created by Lee and Kirby. The Kree are evil as well, but we usually see them though a pariah that turned to the light side (usually using the name "Captain Marvel"), rather than as a full evil race.
    • The Brood (Expies of the aliens from Alien) are depicted as inherently, irredeemably corrupt because of the evolutionary peculiarities of their reproductive methods.
      • In World War Hulk, Broodling manages to make a decent play at being good, but when she tried to reproduce, she ended up having to kill her own spawn to save some children from them.
    • The Dire Wraiths from ROM Spaceknight wholeheartedly embraced evil. Their planet was so supernaturally suffused with corruption that Galactus couldn't eat it. The Wraiths were about as close to being literal demons as a flesh and blood race can hope to be, and they took pride in it. While one Wraith did try to make a Heel Face Turn after disguising himself as a family man for years and discovering love and kindness were actually pretty nice, his comrades taught his son how to be evil, and the boy took to their lessons so well that he eventually murdered his parents. The Dire Wraiths actually enforce evil by indoctrinating it into their young so decent Dire Wraiths are the exception rather than the rule.
    • The Deviants, an evil race created by the Celestials when they created the Eternals and the Humans (or, in later retcons, just the deviants and Eternals).
  • Prior to the DC reboot, the precursors of the Green and White Martians, the Burning Martians, were psychotic monsters that fed on flame and destruction.


Fan Fic[edit | hide]

  • In crossover Alternate Universe fics, usually with the Stargate Verse, the Twelve Colonies from Battlestar Galactica are portrayed as psycho gun-happy Earth invaders, despite there being no evidence for this. One should duly note that most of these fics are absolutely horrible derivatives of Reunions Are a Bitch, which laid most of the blame on the leaders, and the Average Joe Colonial earnestly believed that they're doing the right thing and helping Earth with their invasion.
  • The Muk and bug-type Pokémon in the Poke Wars Series are portrayed as mindless killing machines.
  • In the Mass Effect fanfic, The Council Era, the dezban race are perceived as being utter savages by the rest of the galaxy. For the vast majority of the species, this became true after the Great War, but an exception is introduced in the dezban bounty hunter Sevalaus Morkaneto, who is both rational-thinking and far less aggressive than most of his brethren.
  • The Uchiha are usually portrayed as this, except Mikoto, Itachi, Obito and, on rare occasions, Sasuke.
  • From My Immortal, the Preps are always antagonistic and evilly preppy.


Films -- Animation[edit | hide]

  • In The Tale of Despereaux, even the narrator states that rats are always greedy, dirty, unheroic, and terrified of the light, with the exception of Rascuro who falls to the dark side for a while after he tries not to be Exclusively Evil.
  • The vikings of the film How to Train Your Dragon initially believe that all dragons are horrible monsters who will ALWAYS go for the kill. If the subversion is a spoiler to you, stop reading TV Tropes. Your ability to anticipate narrative is beyond saving.
  • Disney applied this trope to Huns and hyenas.


Films -- Live Action[edit | hide]

  • The aliens from Independence Day
    • Basically, 99% alien invasion movies ever made. Because, you know, they declared war on us first, so they must all be evil! Exceptions and subversions include District 9, Predators, Knowing...
  • 300 was criticized for portraying the Persians this way, although it is justified by the Unreliable Narrator...and the fact that the Persians are an invading army.
  • Gremlins from, well, Gremlins. Gizmo is the only member of the species who is good, and you'll notice that he never becomes a gremlin himself. The other Mogwai spawned from Gizmo also apply, but they're somewhat more benign than the full Gremlins.
    • Most Gremlins are Always Chaotic Neutral/Stupid. It's really only Stripe who was pure evil.
    • The Affably Evil Brain Gremlin from "Gremlins 2: the New Batch" probably falls a little closer to Neutral Evil.
  • The goblins in Troll 2 fit the bill pretty well. All of them want a tasty snack of the humans in the movie, and the best part is that they are all vegetarians too!
  • The martians in Mars Attacks!. Besides this one, relevant tropes include For the Evulz, Violence Is the Only Option, and We Come in Peace, Shoot to Kill.
    • It's worth noting that the cards on which the movie was based subverted this, showing a much more peaceful organization of martians who opposed the invasion. Of course, given that, in the same set, humanity invaded Mars, kicked their asses while the war machines were off to Earth, and it eventually ends in Mars blowing up, it leads to the most unfortunate of implications. Or further villainization of the aggressive side of the populace for ruining it for everyone.
  • The Djinn race from Wishmaster.
  • The Deadites in all three Evil Dead films, as well as the Army of the Dead in the third Army of Darkness.
  • Star Wars has a very literal example of this in the form of the Tusken Raiders, who, as far as the movies go, never seemed to be portrayed as anything other than Chaotic Evil.


Gamebooks[edit | hide]

  • Both used and subverted in the Lone Wolf franchise. Those beings created directly by Naar, the God of Darkness, such as Agarash and the Darklords, have his essence in place of the souls that living creatures possess, accounting for their Exclusively Evil nature. Their servants, such as the orc-like Giaks, are evil only because they have never had any other choice, having been bred and used as warrior-slaves for generations. They do not know love, kindness, or compassion because they have never seen it, and readers are swiftly led to feel pity for them even as they kill and torture their way across the heroes' homelands.
    • Also, anyone described as "swarthy" is not to be trusted.
  • Orcs and goblins in the Fighting Fantasy books are always evil. Dark elves are an interesting case - in most books, they are portrayed as powerful and very, very evil, but in Night Dragon, they become allies against the eviler Night Dragon. The first one the player meets explains that he doesn't want to see his entire race destroyed, just as the PC, a human, would not want to see all human wiped out.
    • The book Titan, which serves as the backgrounder for the world that most Fighting Fantasy books are set in, subverts this trope with the Halfhand brothers. The humans Rerek and Myzar Halfhand, and their human followers, invaded and slaughtered a nation of orcs that were living in a fertile territory that the humans wanted. The book Lampshades the fact that the humans were very much in the wrong in this case, since they were the ones who attacked the orcs first, even though the humans are also celebrated as the heroes!


Literature[edit | hide]

  • In The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, we have a race which is Always Lawful Stupid: the callous and bureaucratic Vogons. Douglas Adams came up with a justification for this which was put into the movie; the Vogon homeworld is covered in paddles that fly up and whack you in the face whenever you have an idea.
    • Now, the Silastic Armorfiends of Striterax -- they were about as evil as one could get in Hitchhiker.

"... and that was just the name of their race. The name of their military was something truly horrible."

    • And ironically not nearly as dangerous as the amiable but misguided Krikkiters. Even if they were finishing the job of the Armorfiends.
  • Subverted and/or Deconstructed repeatedly in Animorphs:
    • The Yeerks are built up as a monolithically evil species who enslave other races because they're dicks. However, we later learn that Yeerks without hosts are almost blind and deaf, and can only swim about feebly in small pools; thus, the fact that they possess other species is understandable, if not commendable. Later still, we encounter Yeerks who do not agree with enslaving other species and either enter a voluntary commensal relationship, or live out their lives in Yeerk Pools. Eventually, in the far future, they generate artificial bodies to live in which have no minds of their own.
    • Taxxons are vicious, cannibalistic monsters who are constantly in the grip of an absolutely irresistible hunger, and who apparently voluntarily submitted themselves to Yeerk domination. However, they are also intelligent, and there is a group of rebels on their home world fighting against the Yeerks. Their vicious nature is a result of evolving on one of the harshest planets in the galaxy. In the end, they all morph into pythons and live out their lives as animals to escape the constant hunger.
      • Worth noting: the reason they volunteered themselves for controllership was also an attempt to free themselves of the hunger. This didn't work.
    • The Howlers were actually a fascinating deconstruction. They were created by the God of Evil / Eldritch Abomination Crayak, and had spent at least thousands of years wiping out countless species across the galaxy for no apparent reason. Cassie, however, refused to believe they were Always Chaotic Evil if they were truly sentient. When Jake eventually morphs one and gets to experience its natural instincts, he finds out that their minds are closest to dolphins. They're childlike and playful, and honestly don't know that other species have sentience until the Animorphs infect their Hive Mind with their own memories.
    • The Hork-Bajir seem evil (they look like dinosaurs with knives stuck all over them), but once we meet free Hork-Bajir, they turn out to be peaceful and good-natured. They didn't even have a concept of war before the Yeerks invaded their planet; when Dak first gets attacked by a Hork-Bajir-Controller, he literally cannot understand what's happening, since the thought of another Hork-Bajir purposefully hurting him had never occurred to him before.
      • The arm-blades and leg-blades are for harvesting tree bark, their main food source. They were, in fact, genetically engineered by the natives of their homeworld to keep the world's decidedly fragile ecosystem stable by acting as an entire species of arboretum-keepers.
  • Arguably, the Canaanites in "The Bible", though there are exceptions like Ruth and Rahab, both who are rewarded by becoming ancestors of Jesus. Still, many passages are devoted to just how they are about to be smited. Ultimately subverted, though, as the great multitude of the Redeemed includes every tongue and tribe.
    • The ENTIRE WORLD was this in the time of Noah, hence why God decided to pull a Kill'Em All with the Great Flood.
  • The Sranc (and similar races) in R. Scott Bakker's Second Apocalypse are Always Chaotic Evil to the point of routine canine injury.
    • They're referred to as "weapon races" on several occasions, and it's stated pretty specifically that the Consult used a combination of magic and stranger things (that is, science) to create them. We see one of the races' perspectives, and they're basically sex-crazed, intelligent dogs who get off on violence—exactly as their creators intended.
  • The good witches of L. Frank Baum's Oz books were a subversion of witches as Always Chaotic Evil.
    • As well, in The Film of the Book The Wizard of Oz, the Wicked Witch's guards are expected to be the Mook version of this trope, but once Dorothy defeats the Witch, the guards thank her and praise her. This doesn't happen in the book, as it was explicitly stated that the Wicked Witch had enslaved the Winkies (the people of Western Oz).
  • Averted and subverted in most of the works of Edgar Rice Burroughs. Several races in his science fiction novels appear to be evil, but on closer inspection, it is usually revealed that they are evil because of some aspect of their culture rather than anything inherent. The vicious nomadic Green Men in his Martian novels turn out to be violent because their culture disdains affection and families and actively punishes parents who try to treat their children lovingly or even find out who their children are (they lay eggs and randomly shuffle them before they hatch). The cannibal men of U-Gor in the seventh Martian novel turned to cannibalism out of desperation because their President Evil enforced policies that led to starvation. The hideous Coripies from the Pellucidar novels are antisocial and violent because they kill women who have a lot of children to control their population, making women hate their children, and men avoid sexual relations with any woman they like. The Mahar of Pellucidar seem to be evil at first, but turn out to have a sense of justice and honor.
    • Also, the Mahar don't know humans are anything other than animals, since they are totally deaf and communicate through telepathy, and thus can't hear human speech. The resident Absent-Minded Professor claims it's not really telepathy, they just project their thoughts through Another Dimension, but the distinction is lost on me. (Admittedly, totally missing human tool-using and such, even for a Paleolithic culture like most of Pellucidar, seems pretty Too Dumb to Live for a species which is supposed to be at least as smart as humans, probably smarter....)
    • The Wieroo in the Caspak trilogy come a little closer, in that we're never explicitly told why they developed their sadistic religion. But when you discover that your entire race is doomed because you can't produce fertile women...except that you can reproduce with normal humans...who unfortunately consider you hideous monsters, and thus will never willingly sleep with you...well, it's still awful, but unsurprising that something had to give.
  • The countries and, thus, races in the Belgariad are dramatically stereotyped: the Drasnians are sneaky Chaotic Neutrals or Chaotic Goods, while the Arends are all brash to the point of stupidity and definitely belong somewhere in a pseudo-medieval hierarchy. The bad guys are split into a number of groups, but can all be described simply as "bad guys".
    • In the sequel series, the Malloreon, however, the author takes great pains to humanize at least some of the bad guys, usually by adding them to the protagonist's adventuring party. At that point, the Angarak nations get more distinguished by their individual hats than the fact that they're evil.
      • The author handwaves this by having the "races" be the product of selection by the gods: Chaldan, god of the Arends, values courage over brains. So when he got to select his chosen people, he picked accordingly, and things got predictably out of hand from there. Likewise, the Angaraks were bad guys in large part because they were driven to it by a bad god who wasn't pushing them in the sequel, being dead.
      • The author also justifies this in the Belgariad by stating that the three "bad guy" countries are controlled by a rigid and invasive religious heirarchy of the cruel god. This means that, for the Belgariad, all the antagonists are products of a chaotic evil society. The most "liberal" of the three is still populated by people who fear the priest caste. The fourth "bad guy" country is governed by a more cosmopolitan and urbane group, and, thus, is less chaotic.
        • In fairness, the Nadraks and Thulls are never really presented as evil. The Nadraks tend to be more closely aligned with the Drasnians than their fellow Angaraks, and the Thulls are straight up victims of Angarak society and will quite happily surrender to any western force that happens by just to get away from the Grolims.
  • The dark elves (a.k.a. moredhel, a.k.a. Brotherhood of the Dark Path) from Raymond E. Feist's Midkemia series are presented as ruthless, murderous, and unscrupulous. In an interesting twist, they are literally of the same blood as the eledhel, the High Elves of the series. It's explained that their differences are solely cultural, and that their cruel tendencies are mostly due to the lingering influence of their former dragon rider masters, the destructive Valheru. They're shown to have grey areas, and have Proud Warrior Race Guy and Noble Demon tendencies. Occasionally, a moredhel will leave his or her people and join the eledhel, after which, he or she is considered an eledhel.
    • The Pantathians are snake-people who are described and shown to be alien and destructive in their very natures, with no chance of redemption (even a Pantathian that's hatched from its egg literally minutes earlier will attack any non-Pantathian on sight). But they're justified by having been created by an evil mistress as minions.
    • Not to mention the various extradimensional creatures, such as the demons and the Dread, neither of which have ever been shown doing anything besides trying to destroy the world and devour all life.
      • They're justified by being too alien to life on our plane to coexist peacefully with it.
    • The Dasati in the Darkwar subseries are introduced as Exclusively Evil, to the point that their society hunts down and kills their own pregnant women and children to ensure that only the strongest will survive their attacks, and there are no doctors or healers. However, we quickly learn that there is a secret society known as the White that is working to reform their culture, and they are not irredeemably evil.
    • The one race in the Riftwar-verse that is utterly and irredeemably evil is the Valheru, a.k.a. The Dragon Lords. Beings of nigh-godlike power, who ride dragons throughout the multiverse, looting whatever worlds capture their fancy, and killing and eating all manner of other creatures, including each other. While not sadistic, the Valheru are power-hungry, completely immoral, and so powerful that they cannot be allowed to be free...well, anywhere.
      • Though the novels themselves point out that the Valheru aren't so much evil as they are other - they come from a time when good and evil were meaningless concepts, unlike the modern world after new gods arose, and as such, can't really be allowed free reign anywhere in it because they upset the balance of the universe just by doing what Valheru do (which is to say, whatever they please).
  • In the Redwall series, the species of a character alone will (almost) always tell you if they're good (mice, moles, shrews) or evil (rats, ferrets, stoats). Even one of the evil species who was raised in Redwall turns out bad, because it's apparently In the Blood. Cats seem to be the only species to avoid this, as there are examples of good and evil cats in the series.
    • Veil in The Outcast of Redwall turns good at the end of the book. However, he dies from it. Bryony's theory is that he turned bad precisely because it was expected of him; he was always accused of theft when something went missing and generally treated like a bomb about to go off by the rest of the Abbeydwellers, so he started living up to their expectations out of spite.
    • Then there's Blaggut from The Bellmaker, the only vermin who isn't evil from the moment of his entrance. He's a decent guy who gets manipulated by his traditionally-evil captain. Eventually, he strangles the captain to death for having murdered the abbey's Badger Mother, and then leaves Redwall out of guilt. It's established that he pays it regular visits afterward, and the Dibbuns are very fond of him.
    • And Romsca, though she doesn't last very long either.
    • The biggest exception to this rule is at the end of Marlfox, when almost all of the rats under the Marlfoxes' control do a Heel Face Turn and become peaceful.
      • Brian Jacques, the author of the Redwall series, has explained on his website that most of his animal creations are based on the mythological interpretations of the animals—wolves and foxes are sly and clever creatures, badgers are noble and proud, and birds such as sparrows are based on the author's personal observations of sparrows in his back yard.
    • Notably parodied by Something Awful.
  • The various Shadowspawn from The Wheel of Time are a case of the "artificially created to be evil" variety, being genetically engineered to be the Dark One's slaves.
    • Notably, with different kinds of Shadowspawn, we see different variations on this trope. Trollocs and Draghkar are basically exceptionally violent, bloodthirsty animals who are too stupid to know what they're doing is wrong. The gholam has human intelligence but is a straightforward living weapon and quite proud of that fact. The Myrddraal, though, are definitely the creepiest - the commanders of the Shadowspawn, they are absolutely emotionless and driven to conquer the world for the Dark One. They derive no pleasure from anything except inflicting pain (and even then, they don't show it - the fact that they go out of their way to do it in the first place is the only indicator that they like it) and have a heavily implied fetish for raping human women, which almost always drives the victim insane (why they do that is probably best left unknwon). It's very telling that the Dark One himself uses a modified Myrddraal, Shaidar Haran, as his mouthpiece.
  • Have you ever seen a Deep One that wasn't evil or Cthulhu-allied, even in Cthulhu Mythos works not written by HP Lovecraft?
    • Neil Gaiman played with this in his short story A Study in Emerald. However, it does acknowledge the evil-alignment at the end, when it is implied that the detective-hero is not actually Sherlock Holmes, but his antagonist, who is working against the evil he perceives in the Great Old Ones, is.
      • Considering that it's blatantly stated that the Old Ones eat people, and that the peace they brought to the Earth is one of terror and subjugation, I'd say he's not playing with it that much.
    • It doesn't help that Lovecraft treats actual races in a very similar manner (read the descriptions of the cultists in The Call of Cthulhu for a fine example), besides creating several inbred communities in rural America and the infamous fishmen of Innsmouth, who stand out as an ugly, racist metaphor concerning immigrants. The entire basis of Lovecraft's horror is set firmly upon the idea that anything alien or different is terrifyingly evil and he was apparently rather open about his xenophobia, even going so far as to tell his Jewish wife that he thought mixed marriages were a bad idea.
      • To be fair, Lovecraft also had no trouble in writing about degenerate, barbaric white people, and did it with far greater frequency than lauding against the blacks.
    • His racism aside, the Exclusively Evil nature of the beings in the Lovecraft mythos was due to the fact that their psychology and morality were normal to them, but completely alien to humans.
    • To answer the question: yes, in The Jennifer Morgue by Charles Stross.
      • Heck, in The Fuller Memorandum, it turns out that one of them is working for The Laundy itself and does a phenomenal job there.
  • Averted in the case of the Elder Things. The narrator even praises their determination:

"poor Lake, poor Gedney... and poor Old Ones! Scientists to the last - what had they done that we would not have done in their place? God, what intelligence and persistence! What a facing of the incredible, just as those carven kinsmen and forbears had faced things only a little less incredible! Radiates, vegetables, monstrosities, star spawn - whatever they had been, they were men!"

  • Subverted in China Mieville's The Scar. The Grindylows are set up like this, but it is revealed that they are merely zealous defenders of hearth and home.
  • The Mijaki in Karen Miller's Godspeaker Trilogy that had to be contained with their own land so they wouldn't overrun the world, which, of course, they do.
  • The Dead in Garth Nix's Old Kingdom trilogy. They were originally humans, but have been reanimated. They'll suck the Life out of anything even if they aren't allied under a necromancer. Being an animated, twisted sin against the cosmic order will do that to ya.
  • The Urgals from Christopher Paolini's Inheritance Cycle seem to be this. Apparently, they've hated humanity from the get-go (and vice-versa), and when Galbatorix tries to convince his subjects that the Urgals weren't actually evil, just misunderstood, absolutely no one believes him. The Urgals are presented as primitive, monstrous creatures that have no issues with killing and will do just about anything to get what they want, which seems to be death to all the other races.
    • Subverted later in the series, when we learn that Urgals have organized society and were misled by Galbatorix; they start helping the Varden after they realize what a screwup the whole arrangement was.
    • The Ra'zac are this trope played straight.
  • The Posleen from John Ringo's Legacy of the Aldenata stories at first seem to be this - they are a voracious Horde of Alien Locusts that loot worlds and eat the inhabitants. However, it is later revealed that they are genetically engineered Super Soldiers created by a long-gone alien race, and are merely following their programming. Individual Posleen even show some level of nobility when they are viewpoint characters. Michael O'Neal, Jr even comments that he does not hate the Posleen, but if he ever runs into their creators, he'll really hate them.
  • R.A. Salvatore plays with this trope in his Forgotten Realms books. Denizens of the Abyssal planes fit the trope; drow mostly stay true, with one very notable exception (and a small group of Chaotic Good drow that end up dead); orcs were monolithically portrayed as such until Obould showed up and started civilizin' the lot.
  • The Koloss in Brandon Sanderson's Mistborn trilogy, explained in the third book by appropriately horrific sorts of mutation and mind control. Played with in the form of Kelsier, the Legendary Hero Whose Name The Masses Whisper In The Iron Grip Of The Evil Emperor, who thinks of everyone on the opposing side as Agents Of The Darkest Evil Who Must Be Purged. Most of his crew, while on board with the whole rebellion thing, are deeply unnerved.
  • Tolkien and The Lord of the Rings.
    • As a devout Catholic who believed in the concept of spiritual salvation, the idea of an entire race of irredeemably evil creatures was one of Tolkien's major sticking points with his own work. He spent much of the latter part of his life as a writer trying to justify it. In the end, he never did come up with an explanation that satisfied him.
    • The makers of the movie trilogy were concerned that the idea of a race being evil by definition seemed racist, claiming that in Tolkien's time, people didn't mind such stuff. Hence, the added scene where Uruk-Hai are created from the earth in Saruman's dungeons. This is not mentioned in the book, but is one of the author's earlier drafts for their origins, as an attempt at the "artificial origin" justification.
    • This particular explanation of Tolkien's Orcs can be seen as an exploration of institutionalized abuse and slavery. While the Orcs may be considered a "species" with distinctly different genetic traits from their Elf ancestors, they do not possess a culture except what they have acquired almost by accident. They are less an evil race than they are a race that has been warped by external forces into a source of cannon fodder. Perhaps the saddest and most frightening thing about Orcs and Trolls is that we can never know what they would be like if Morgoth and Sauron hadn't gotten their hands on them.
      • In the Silmarillion, the elves theorize that Orcs were Elves tortured and corrupted by Morgoth, and in the Lord of the Rings, Treebeard voices a similar theory about trolls being created as a mockery of Ents. Note that both of these are theories coined by characters of the story, which are never directly confirmed by the author.
        • In The Hobbit, William the troll has mercy on Bilbo and insists that the other trolls let him go. It is mentioned that William "had already had as much supper as he could hold; also he had had lots of beer".
    • Another idea was that orcs are generally just primitive tribes and are "evil" precisely because of Sauron's/Morgoth's magic. After The Ring is destroyed, they scatter in all directions.
    • The Easterlings, Haradrim, and other so-called "evil Men" were also not as evil as they appeared. In fact, it is implied that they only serve the Big Bad because of lies and promises made to them (and never kept).
      • In the Third Age (and thus LOTR), yes (and also because many of those people are in Sauron's "sphere of influence" much more than the West is). In the First Age, it's different: it's implied that the original humans fell to Morgoth, but not why. The evil Men come from cultures which never rebelled against Morgoth, whereas the good Men rebelled and fled to the western end of Middle-Earth.
      • The original humans fell to Morgoth because, at that point in the First Age, the Valar were estranged from Middle-Earth, which allowed Morgoth free reign to go amongst the newly awakened Men and basically present himself as a God, and they believed him becasue they didn't know any better.
      • Supplementary material had the last two Wizards starting rebellions against Sauron in their homelands, so it's not that the Haradrim, Easterlings, and others had no good people, it's that the good ones were busy dealing with problems in their own lands.
      • And then there is the fact that many of the men of Middle Earth had legitimately bad experiences with the Numenoreans in the late Second Age, who ruled over them as tyrants, taxed them heavily, and often enslaved them and destroyed their livelihoods (e.g., by cutting down their forests).
      • In the Silmarillion, it is pointed out that some of the Easterlings (those led by Chieftain Bor) remained loyal allies to the Elves of Beleriand. It's also noted that most of those who became Morgoth's vassals did so out of fear rather than malice.
    • The Orcs themselves were not inherently evil, it's simply that they were never given the opportunity to be anything else. They were raised in a culture that encouraged hoarding and greed, and the differences between them incited the violent tendencies bred into them by years and years of the same lifestyle. In an Orc culture, cooperation is a bad idea because it lessens your own chances of survival in a dangerous situation (i.e. leave your partner to the wolves and escape on your own).
      • And Tolkien was generally quite good at giving individual Orcs distinct personalities—they are an evil species, not the same individual reproduced over and over again. Ugluk, for example, is a very different person from Grishnakh. Uruk-hai seem to be a bit more uniform, but that could well be the result of Saruman's mind-controlling voice more than anything.
      • In one letter, Tolkien points out that some orcs are capable of courage and tribal loyalty if nothing else, and that they wouldn't have been able to function as well if they were completely evil
    • Haradrim and other Men who were called "fallen" were tricked into obeying Sauron, probably much as the Numenoreans fell centuries earlier.
    • Tolkien also treated wolves this way, taking his cue from mythologies in which wolves are always evil.
  • The "Trolls" in The Apocalypse Troll by David Weber. Though only one is technically featured, the rest are described as just as psychopathic, manipulative, and omnicidal. They're really robots, but with the apparent ability to choose not to kill everything in their path—they just choose to do so, most of the time.
    • Unfortunately, they're not robots. They're human brains, often cloned when "fresh" ones are unavailable—and guess how they get the fresh ones—which are then tortured horribly to the point where all they want to do is kill everything in revenge for being made into what they now are. Given the choice, which they do not have, they'd turn on their masters in a heartbeat. Then go back to killing humans because it's "fun". Their creators, nicknamed the Kangas (and guess what they look like), are psychopathically xenophobic because of their religion that states that anything appearing as a non-Kanga is the Devil in another disguise.
  • Defied in DragonFire; one of Leetu Bends' contacts is a bisonbeck Reverse Mole, who has done a Heel Face Turn.
  • The Yuuzhan Vong are initially introduced as being pretty much pure evil down to the last warrior, but it turns out that they're caught up in the stranglehold of a Religion of Evil that is manipulated by their insane leadership. Over the course of the later books, we're introduced to Vong who are more human, for lack of a better word, and in the end, a lot of them wind up doing a Heel Face Turn or committing suicide when they find out that the gods they were fighting for were either horribly misinterpreted or (in one case) didn't exist at all.
    • That said, they're still Scary Dogmatic Aliens.
    • Yeah, but that's a cultural thing (due to living under a Religion of Evil for millennia). There's nothing in the Vong's genetic makeup that causes them to be evil, and several of them are given sympathetic POV's later in the series (Nen Yim, Harrar, Vua Rapuung—even Nom Anor to an extent). Jacen explicitly says they're no better or worse than humans would be under the same situation.
  • In the Warrior Cats series, ShadowClan is always branded as this by everyone (particularly ThunderClan). Despite the fact that the only ShadowClan cats who were ever truly evil were Brokenstar and Clawface.
    • The more recent books have subverted this with ShadowClan being nothing more than a rival Clan, and most opposition come from WindClan instead.
    • Also subverted with Bluestar's Prophecy, where ThunderClan faces the most opposition from RiverClan, and never had to deal with ShadowClan. It seems that different Clans end up being seen as "evil" depending on the political atmosphere (ThunderClan was actually branded as evil for a while early in Bluestar's Prophecy after their unprovoked raid on WindClan camp).
    • The cats tend to see humans (or twolegs, in the language of the clans) like this. After all, some people bulldozed the entire forest the cats lived in, forcing the cats to find a new home. Not to mention, some humans run over the cats with their cars (or monsters) and injure the cats badly or even kill them!
  • Played straight in the Chronicles of Thomas Covenant with the Cavewights (though it is established that they weren't always evil), and subverted with the ur-viles. Despite their name, the latter are less evil than they are alien and inscrutable, and are allied with the Big Bad only to advance their own ends. In the second and third series, they apparently decide that helping the heroes advances said ends better. Unfortunately, as they either can't or won't speak English, we're not entirely sure what those ends are...
  • There are probably more examples in Perry Rhodan than anyone would care to mention here, but just in the newest arc (which started only a few weeks ago) there is a race of Big Bads (who can't really die) who have genetically grown really bad mooks at their disposal, in almost unlimited quantities.
  • The Grik in Taylor Anderson's Destroyermen series, although "Always Lawful Evil" would be more accurate, and in the third book, the Alliance meets a member of a different but related species that's not evil.
    • Further, in the fourth book, the Alliance finds some Grik who, possibly as a result of being cut off from their army for several months, are willing to surrender and give peace a chance. Grik are berserkers, more or less; they don't surrender. But these do.
  • Although they don't go 'round cackling about it (much), the Melnibonean culture in Michael Moorcock's Elric series is pretty much evil by definition. Torture, slavery, betrayal, cruelty, sadism, and ruthlessness are prized traits in their "civilization." Essentially, the decaying race of Melnibone is a decadent form of evil elves. Elric is by far the best of them, and even he is a Grade-A Anti-Hero who betrays his kingdom because even he feels that Melnibone as a whole just needs killin'.
    • Melniboneans are, in fact, the inspiration for Dungeons & Dragons' dark elves, which clarifies a few things.
  • The Others from A Song of Ice and Fire, from what little we've seen of them. Some fans find this disappointing, considering the otherwise heavily gray morality of the rest of the series's cast.
  • Averted or perhaps subverted with the dark court in Wicked Lovely. They often seem to be Exclusively Evil, but as we learn more about them, it is increasingly revealed that this is not the case.
    • They aren't evil, just cruel. They have to be, they feed off the darker emotions (rage, lust, fear, pain, etc).

"We are what we are, Niall. Neither as good nor as evil as others paint us." ~ Irial.

  • Discworld has the Fairies, who are Always Chaotic Evil, though Nac Mac Feegle is more neutral. And the Auditors, who are Always Lawful Evil (from humanity's point of view) except, eventually, for Myria LeJean. And the Things from the Dungeon Dimensions, which are beyond human morality. And Demons, who are evil. Every other race, however, subverts this by being stereotyped as vicious monsters by humans but actually being mostly quite nice.
    • Played with in Unseen Academicals. Mr. Nutt learns that he is not a goblin as he has always believed; he is an orc, a race seen as this trope. He expects everyone to hate him, but the people of Ankh-Morpork are rather blase about it at this point, having dealt with and accepted (to varying degrees) trolls, vampires, zombies, and golems. "Mild interest" is pretty much the worst reaction he gets.
      • In fact, it's the authorities (read Vetinari, Margolotta, Ridcully) that think once the truth gets out, both Nutt and the public will go insane from the knowledge, resulting in much violence from both sides. They end up really underestimating just how much weirdness the Ankh-Morpork public is used to (with most of the weirdness originating from the authorities themselves). The most interest Nutt gets is a fashion magazine article (everyone else is far more interested in the newest supermodel to hit town).
      • It also plays with the notion that orcs are grotesquely tortured and mutated elves; in this case, yes, except replace "elves" with humans, because nasty as elves are, there's no one for inventive cruelty quite like a human.
  • In The Guardians, both the nosferatu and the demons are Exclusively Evil. Justified in that the demons are FallenAngels who followed Lucifer in his rebellion against God, and the nosferatu are the angels who did not choose a side and were cast down to Earth.
  • The Garuns in the Great Alta Saga.
  • From The Dresden Files:
    • All three kinds of vampires are regarded as this by the White Council, and it's largely accurate. Black Court vampires are pretty much straight-up killing machines, Red Court are vicious predators who can at least put on a veneer of humanity to manipulate their victims, but are completely dominated by bloodlust. White Court are a subversion (or possibly deconstruction) - they are essentially composed of a human and demon in symbiosis, and while the demon is an Exclusively Evil predator, the human is capapble of good or evil (though resisting the demon when it's hungry is nigh impossible, so most White Court vampires never even bother - with rare exceptions like Thomas).
    • Ghouls are vicious, predatory creatures who tend to be the supernatural community's go-to Psychos for Hire.
    • Winter Court fairies aren't neccesarily evil (Blue and Orange Morality is in full swing with all fairies) but they're pretty uniformly harsh, unforgiving, and dangerous, even when they're legitimately trying to be helpful.
    • Demons are a pretty straight example, as are Fallen Angels (though in this case, they're Fallen because they're evil, not the other way around).
  • In Jim Butcher's Codex Alera series, this is averted and played straight. The Marat and Canim are both considered mindless killing machine races by the Alerans, until Tavi gets to know them. The Vord play this straight, obeying mind-controlled direction from their Queens, whose Purpose is to subsume all life into their race.
  • Justified in John Ringo's Council Wars series. The Changed who make up the majority of New Destiny's military forces may be innocent victims, but thanks to the engineering of Complete Monster and Mad Scientist Celine Reinshafen, they're evil, raping, pillaging, killing machines to the core. When they aren't just Dumb Muscle, who are also evil.
  • Played with the Fammin in the Chronicles of the Emerged World. They were created by the resident Big Bad Aster as his faithful and ruthless soldiers, but there are some members called the "Wrong Ones" who have feelings and free will, but are forced to obey orders as their names are magical spells. After Aster's death, the Fammin lose any hostile behaviour, and so the free people decide to let them live in peace.
  • Trolls and Goblins in Shadowkeep. Averted by the Lawful Neutral Zhiss'ta.
  • The title race in S.M. Stirlings Shadowspawn series, except for Adrian, the Defector From Decadence, although since Adrian is that way from having been kidnapped and raised by a human, it's implied there might be hope for others, which is why he kidnaps his children in the second book from his sister, their mother.
  • Trolls in Liavek are said to be this. It's hard to be sure, since only one troll is shown. He fits, but since we never see another one...
  • Ewu are treated this way in Who Fears Death, because they are the product of violence, they are expected to become violent in their future.
  • In the The Berenstain Bears cartoon and spin-off Bear Scouts series, the weasels, led by Weasel McGreed are depicted this way. Every weasel character encountered by the protagonists is evil, with no exceptions.
  • In The Chronicles of Narnia, certain races, such as Ogres, Hags, and Minotaurs, are always this way. In Prince Caspian, Caspian and his followers immediately reject the idea of recruiting the few surviving Ogres and Hags for their army, even though they have a common enemy. Partially averted in the second and third films, in which the Minotaurs have turned good.


Live-Action TV[edit | hide]

"You were a person before you put on that uniform, okay? You were a person before I fell in love with you."

    • The Cylons in the original series were not created by humans, but by an entirely different and now-extinct race. They were more like a weapon that got out of control than a species in their own right, as the newer series's Cylons were.
  • In Babylon 5, the Drakh are this trope. They are portrayed as universally obsessed with exacting "revenge", at all scales from Mind Rape to genocide, over all other races, for the departure of the Shadows. The species has no internal "good guys", deeper motivations, or other redeeming qualities.
    • How would you feel if someone told your gods they sucked (meaning you suck for worshipping them) and made them abandon you?
      • Been told that several times. Never had a desire for genocide.
    • The Shadows are a pretty good example, being an Ultimate Evil race.
    • It's worth noting that their isolationist culture is the main obstacle for any chance of a peaceful resolution. Also, their revenge isn't aimed against all the people or races of the galaxy—they actually tried to seek help from the Minbari when their homeworld was destroyed, but turned against them when they realized just how big a part they played in defeating the Shadows.
    • Also, the Shadows' intent was to SOW chaos on other races but, themselves, are not inherently chaotic. They're methodical, patient, and organized.
  • Subverted in Brimstone; the escaped souls are often evil, and one would expect them to be, but at least a few were shown to have been genuinely good people who made horrific decisions, or. in at least one case, were doing what they believed to be the best, only to then be judged by another religion's values, after dying. One was even so genuinely contrite and seeking redemption that he was taken to heaven instead of sent back to hell upon his recapture.
    • The show Reaper, which has a similar premise, has an episode introducing a soul who was fighting to control murderous impulses. He eventually acknowledged that the best thing was for him to go back to Hell until he sorted himself out.
  • In Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel, this applies to vampires, who lose their human souls (and thus, their sense of right and wrong) along with their humanity. Interestingly, this isn't true of other kinds of demons, especially in Angel and the later seasons of Buffy; some are always evil, but some may be neutral, and there are apparently even "good demons" dwelling on other planes of existence.
    • This is an unusual case because, even though the show's vampires are explicitly Exclusively Evil, Buffy the Vampire Slayer gives many of them engaging and unique personalities, undercutting the usual (narrative) reason for this trope, which is to provide a supply of faceless, evil Mooks who can be killed without Moral Dissonance.
      • Further subverted by characters like Spike and Harmony - despite being evil, both were capable of caring about human beings (the Summers girls and occasionally the witches for Spike; Cordelia and Fred for Harmony) and being volutarily helpful towards those they liked. Harmony even stopped killing people so that she could advance in a workplace run by the "good guys".
      • This also leads to Fridge Brilliance, as vampires and demons were presented as Exclusively Evil, but became more and more grey as the series went on. The clincher? They were presented to Buffy this way through the Watchers council, a conspiracy that was slowly revealed to be corrupt and full of Knight Templar tendencies at the same time that complexities began showing up in the initial "demons are Exclusively Evil" mantra.
  • Doctor Who has a few of these, although they usually have a reason. For example:
    • The Daleks: mutated aliens in travel machines who are only capable of hate and negative emotions due to being bred that way by Mad Scientist Davros. They simply are made to believe Daleks are a supreme race and, unless events outside of their control are threatening reality with oblivion, everyone else deserves to die. They're Space Nazis (in the serial "Genesis of the Daleks", we learn that Davros "removed the brain cells of the conscience" from the proto-Daleks—a feat that would be, to put it mildly, challenging). In fact, the Daleks are so evil that when one of them realizes he's developing a conscience, he decides to commit suicide.
      • In "The Evil of the Daleks", a sub-species of "Good Daleks" is created by the Doctor infecting them with the "Human Factor"; that is, human emotions and a sense of conscience. This results in a full-scale civil war between the two factions which allegedly destroyed the entire species. Terry Nation, the Daleks' creator, had planned to license them out to a US network for their own show, and expected that they would not be available for Doctor Who for the foreseeable future (the idea went nowhere). When the Daleks eventually returned five years later, some dialogue was filmed explaining that the "Good Daleks" had been wiped out, but this was edited out, leaving their canon fate ambiguous.
      • A story in Doctor Who Magazine's Eighth Doctor comics, "Children of the Revolution", was all about the Doctor and Izzy meeting the Human Factor Daleks, who survived and were hiding peacefully in the oceans of a planet about to be colonized by humans. The story ends up with the entire Dalek colony sacrificing themselves to stop the Big Bad, though.
      • The Daleks' evil was hammered home really hard in "Evolution of the Daleks".

Solomon: Daleks, ain't we the same? Underneath, ain't we all kin? See, I've just discovered, this past day, that God's universe is a thousand times the size I thought it was. And that scares me. Oh, yeah, terrifies me right down to the bone. *Hopeful music starts playing* But surely it's got to give me hope, hope that maybe, together, we can make a better tomorrow. So, I beg you, now, if you have any compassion in your hearts, then you'll meet with us, and stop this fightin'. Well... what do you say?
Dalek: Exterminate! *Shoots him*

    • The Cybermen: the originals had lost all their emotions due to replacing almost all their body parts with machinery, and couldn't see why someone wouldn't want to "Become like us". The new series' version is closer to the Daleks, but still have the desire to convert instead of just killing everyone.
    • The Sontarans: Proud Warrior Race Guys who worship war; they're all clones of one guy, churned out by the trillions to fight an endless war against shapeshifting gleen blobs. And they fit into this trope as being Always Sometimes Lawful Neutral, since their actions always have a military objective and, unless they involve Earth, are not good or evil at face value.
      • The best subversion of this would be the Sontaran in the episode "A Good Man Goes To War". After being punished for something his clone pod did, he's forced into the worst Sontaran punishment possible - caring for the weak and dying - a nurse. He goes around healing the people wounded in battle, nursing newborns, and even comes to help the Doctor rescue Amy and her child. In the end, when he's killed in battle, we discover that he no longer considered himself a warrior.
    • The Weeping Angels: Abstract alien entities from the "Dark Age" of the universe when the Time Lords were ascending to prominence, known to be filled with all manner of evil creatures. They are, apparently, the ideas of living things come to life to torture and kill us, which is a pretty scary concept. Their normal way of killing someone is actually rather nice- they send you back in time to a point where you can and will lead a full and happy life, dying on the day you return to your normal timeline, which is usually from old age and nothing bad. They do this because they feed off of your "potential" energy and that means its in their interest to make your life as wonderful as possible. But don't let that fool you- the entire race are is composed of evil, sadistic psychopaths and if they are well-fed and don't really need to do that to you, they will kill you For the Evulz, and it will be a nasty, violent death if the Gory Discretion Shots are any indication.
    • The Silence: have manipulated thousands of creatures over millenia, you look away from them and forget that they were ever there. Implied to have caused the TARDIS to explode at the end of last season, which would have destroyed the Universe.
    • In many ways, the Time Lords are also this, with the Doctor himself being the Drizz't of the bunch (and perhaps a few others like the Corsair, Romana, etc).
      • Or are they? While they've undoubtably done some evil things, they seem to be trying to prevent the end of the universe, which will apparently happen if the Doctor lives long enough. They may possibly have some kind of good motivation, it's been kept too ambiguous so far.
  • The Reavers in Firefly. It's never quite explained why they don't kill/rape/eat each other, even though they travel in such massive groups.
    • As revealed in the movie, Serenity, Reavers are infected with a chemical agent that, in .01% of the population, causes uncontrolled aggression. Given that Reavers mutilate themselves for no reason at all, the idea that they don't rape/kill/eat each other is probably due to the fact that other Reavers wouldn't care about having it done TO them. On their home world, they didn't attack the 99.99% who simply became overly passive, most likely because the "passives" wouldn't have given a crap either way.
    • And that woman was part of a team sent to investigate why all communication with the planet had stopped. When the crew of Serenity check out the place, they note that everyone just laid down and died, and there are no signs of violence whatsoever.
    • One could use the facts of the movie to Retcon "Bushwhacked" as the lone survivor of the ship being the only one of the crew to react in the "Reaver" way to the Pax. The Reavers, who can sense this, left him alone and murdered the rest of the crew in front of him, then left him to change as a second booby-trap (the first one being the little thing that Kaylee had to disable to free Serenity).
  • The Goa'uld in Stargate SG-1. Thoroughly justified in the RPG supplement on the System Lords, where it's described as a stacking effect of the circumstances of their evolution, their genetic memory, and their use of the sarcophagus. The Goa'uld queen Egeria, the progenitor of Tok'ra, spawned an entire subrace of My Species Doth Protest Too Much.
    • This is repeatedly emphasized in episodes of the show like "Crossroads" and "Absolute Power". As Daniel notes, being a Goa'uld is like being "born with the memories of a thousand Hitlers." After researching the device more thoroughly, Daniel eventually revised that as simply causing madness and addiction—a bit less colorful than stealing the soul, but same net result.
  • With the occasional episodic exception, the Wraith in Stargate Atlantis also fit this trope. While their treatment of humans is explained by the fact that we're essentially tasty cows to them, they're still excessively sadistic about it. Their dietary needs also fail to justify their consistently dickish behaviour towards each other, as well.
    • There isn't enough food to go around, hence all of the fighting between the Hives. Their dietary needs are exactly why they fight each other.
      • Even without the whole "war over food" thing, Wraith society seems very ruthless and survival-of-the-fittest oriented. I.e. the Klingon Promotion seems widely accepted, and Queens are often shown treating their subordinates like dirt. Not that there weren't historical human cultures that largely shared these values.
    • They seem to have dialed it back slightly in the last couple of seasons of the show, with slightly less Large Ham gloating from some of the Wraith characters. Also, in "The Queen", the Wraith Commander expresses concern over the lives of his men, and the enemy Wraith.
  • The Borg in the later Star Trek series.
    • Except for individuals like Hugh, and some kind of subconscious resistance on Voyager.
    • The original series played with this trope in regards to Klingons. Most Klingon captains tend to fall into this, but some episodes (notably "The Day of the Dove") make a point to show that this is more a perception/stereotype our heroes have of them than an actual truth. Klingons are "the enemy", but not necessarily Exclusively Evil.
    • Initially played straight with the Jem'Hadar, with an infant Jem'Hadar who quickly turns out exactly how everyone warned Odo he would. But eventually averted with a few individuals later, who show some traits of Proud Warrior Race (mostly these are immediately killed).
    • Spectactularly averted with the Romulans. Even though they are The Federation's oldest and most persistent foe, most Romulan characters are depicted as being nuanced, sympathetic, and even extremely honourable, even if they are a little arrogant or deceptive. Even the unambiguously villainous ones like Tomalak are depicted more as a Worthy Opponent than anything else. Interestingly, probably the most evil Romulan in canon, Commander Sela, is a Half-Human Hybrid.
    • Played straight (with one exception) with the Kazon on Voyager; they were featured almost constantly on the show's first two seasons, and yet never recieved any significant Character Development or manifested any redeeming features whatsoever (not even in the form of defectors from decadence). The sole exception was the episode Initiations which gave the Kazon some motivation, and showed that the possibility of redemption existed in a few of them. Sadly, that was the show's only attempt to give the Kazon some depth.
  • In Andromeda the Magog are obligate carnivores who need to kill their prey themselves to start the digestive process, prefer sentient "food", and lay their eggs in the stomachs of other humanoids. Nietzscheans are genetically engineered superhumans who follow a themepark version of Friedrich Nietzsche's philosophy mixed with a heavy dose of Social Darwinism and overthrew the Systems Commonwealth causing the Long Night. But the Andromeda Ascendant's crew includes one of both species, Rev Bem is a Magog converted to a non-violent religion called Wayism while Tyr Anasazi was a Nietzschean mercenary who saw the Andromeda as a way to further his own interests.
    • Although, in season 3 Tyr left the crew and tricked the major Nietzschean Prides into believing he was the genetic reincarnation of their founder Drago Museveni and attempted to conquer the galaxies. He is then replaced by Telemachus Rhade, a descendant of loyalist Nietzscheans who were rather ashamed of the rest of their species.


Mythology and Religion[edit | hide]

  • Demons/fallen angels in The Bible. Justified in that, supposedly, they wouldn't have fallen if they weren't.
    • Any ethnic group who opposed the Israelites are portrayed this way in The Bible. According to The Bible, the Canaanites were so uniformly evil that God Himself commanded a genocide against them. Whether you agree with this assessment or not is another matter, which shall not be discussed.
    • Occasionally, you have a fallen angel who doesn't seem to have gone full-subterranean. In Jewish folklore, Asmodeus is sometimes regarded as attending synagogue, and even does better than Solomon on some matters of morality (although, given that Solomon apparently lapsed in matters towards the close of his reign...). Some angels, such as Sammael and Zaphkiel, are both good and evil. The offspring of angels and humans are a different story. They're called "Nephilim" ("fallen" or "ruinous") for a reason. In fact, 1 Enoch posits that the reason for the Flood was that if they weren't drowned out, the Nephilim would have devoured the world down to the bedrock. And even after that, the Nephilim wouldn't be done; they will just persist as evil spirits. In other words, the vast majority of demons were undead Nephilim.
    • And demons aren't even consistently always evil in even christian traditions (predating the 20th century that is). Many grimoires show them as more animalistically dangerous than malicious.
  • Male Jotnar, western dragons, harpies, and many others. But then, in those days, folks often characterized their human enemies the same way.
    • In the case of the Jotnar, it wasn't so much "evil" as "chaotic", and this was justified in that the Jotnar were properly understood to be a tribe of gods who personified chaos, rather than a "race" per se. The later conception of them as "giants" is mostly a result of the Christian influence on later folklore.
  • In many myths, ghosts only wish to inflict pain on the living even if they were good people in life.
  • This trope goes back to Older Than Dirt Mesopotamian examples: the Allu, Asakku, Gallu, and Rabisu.

Tabletop Games[edit | hide]

  • The trope name comes from Dungeons & Dragons, which certainly used the trope, though this particular phrase only came in later on and in fact signalled something of an aversion (see below). The real reason for the use of the trope was, of course, so players wouldn't feel bad when killing monsters and taking their treasure (i.e. home invasion). In fact, the whole cosmology of the D&D universe used to be based on alignment; Good and Evil (and Law and Chaos) weren't morally relative terms, they were natural forces that influenced most creatures—very few races (including the Player Character races) could actually choose their alignments willingly; the rest were doomed to be what they were born as.
    • Originally, every type of monster or creature would simply have an entry for "Alignment" stating one Character Alignment or another, without any modifiers; not only did it imply that pratically all creatures of that type had the alignment, but it wasn't even brought up that there could be any other way.
    • In 3.0+ this was relaxed, by inserting "often", "usually" or "always" in front of the alignment descriptor, to indicate how strong a tendency, cultural or otherwise, the race in question had to be of the alignment. This also created the phrase "Always Chaotic Evil". Later the only races who are always one alignment or another are those who are somehow "tied" to good or evil (or law or chaos), such as demons, angels, and other spiritual creatures; or those without sufficient Intelligence to recognize alignment, which are always neutral unless the previous rule overrides it. (Lemures, lowest of the devils, don't have an Intelligence score but are still Always Lawful Evil.) Of course, mortal "bad guy" races are still marked as "usually evil", which is probably close enough to this trope as to make no difference.
    • In-universe, the "usually evil" nature of some races is justified by their main traditional deities, such as Lloth for the Drow and Gruumsh for the Orcs, being evil. These gods also work very hard to make sure that their worshippers are just as bad as they are, and any that aren't tend to end up on the gods' hit list. Good deities tend to respect free will more than the evil ones, so their races have evil, good, and neutral people. Human alignment is all over the place since they don't have a racial deity to call their own. In some cases, an evil race will also have been created by an evil god.
    • The Eberron campaign setting for D&D 3.5 has gone so far as to explicitly discourage the use of the alignment section of a monster's stats, even for those who are "tied" to a certain alignment. The core book also makes clear that "evil" does not equal "kill on sight"—the tavern owner overcharges for draft and cheats on his wife; are you gonna put the sword to his neck like you would with Lord Dark Von Doompantsington XIII?
    • On that last note, the supplements Book of Vile Darkness and Exalted Deeds make it clear that neither good nor evil can be defined as "nice and naughty", and those that don't devote their life to either actually qualify as neutral. Presumably, this is why a rogue isn't necessarily evil, even though theft is frowned upon.
    • Players themselves seem to like subverting Exclusively Evil tropes (or embracing them) simply because the "evil" races and cultures are much more interesting than the generic "protagonist" races. As GM and Dungeons & Dragons translator Andrey Lensky wrote long ago:

... my experience suggests: write in Monster Manual that among 100 cambions one is Good, and this one will get into adventure.

    • The Drow of the Forgotten Realms setting and the Draconians of the Dragonlance setting are classic examples of "evil races". However, as the plot went on, individuals arose—specifically, Rule of Cool scimitar-wielding (and heavily parodied in just about every single fantasy webcomic, due to his being heavily copied by virtually every fanboy at one point or another) Drizzt. Initially based on fanboyism, entire counter-cultures have arisen of differing alignment (as the page quote points out). In the Realms, most "good" Drow are the worshipers of Eilistraee, a goddess of the moon and hunt, whose (almost Always Female) clerics worship their goddess by performing a sword dance naked. Though the clerics of the Evil Goddess were all female also.
      • 4th Edition Dropped A Bridge On Them (and many other things) so that Drizzt remain more "special"; which became one of the reasons why FR fans tend to consider 4e essentially unrelated to anything even more than the rest of D&D crowd.
      • The Draconians are getting more development as well—they were initially introduced as somewhat snazzier Orc-equivalents, but later books reveal that the average Draconian is only a few years old and has been force-fed a Religion of Evil from birth to create the perfect fighting race. This generally worked, but after the collapse of the dragonarmies, some Draconians began developing more individuality, and the Kang's Regiment series centers on a group of sympathetic Draconian protagonists who just want to be left alone to build up their race in peace.
    • Planescape gets into the details, such as 1/5 (!) of Alu-fiends (half-succubi) being nonevil, even though technically they count as lesser Tanar'ri. The setting more emphasizes general philosophies.
    • Even back in the days of 2e, Spelljammer had some fun with this. It was revealed that Tarrasques - immense creatures existing solely for destruction, only failing to have the Chaotic Evil alignment due to lacking the degree of consciousness having an alignment implies - are naturally docile rock-eaters; the more familiar ones are the result of their being driven insane and constantly hungry by environment not matching the unique composition of their homeworld's. One of the iconic setting NPCs is a non-evil mutant Beholder bartender, and some fairly decent Illithids. In SJ it comes more surprising that there are non-evil Neogi.
    • Interestingly, under 3e/3.5e, demons are Always Chaotic Evil, even when they aren't - sort of. It's possible - although incredibly rare—for a demon to have an alignment other than Chaotic Evil, but chaos and evil are such an integral part of their being that for magical effects, they still count as Chaotic Evil in addition to whatever their actual alignment is. Devils work the same for Lawful Evil, and the various celestials work this way for various flavors of Good. Since these creatures are essentially alignment concepts given life, it is rather hard to change them. And yes, this does mean that, say, the Succubus who was driven by the Power of Love to forsake her evil ways or the penitent Pit Fiend will show up on a Paladin's Detect Evil. Staying away from them - especially the extra-stabby kind - is recommended for any reformed Demons or Devils.
    • Pathfinder (the official setting, that is) pretty much plays it straight, with the only significant difference being how much more willing it is to describe the kind of evil they are, for example, any drow who displayed compassion or altruism would get hunted down and killed, or bugbears not simply being another goon-monster but an entire species of freakishly large yet uncannily sneaky serial killers who thrive on murder, or the infamous hillbilly rapist ogres.
    • Overlapping with Reptiles Are Abhorrent, yuan-ti are Usually Neutral Evil.
    • By their very nature, liches are Evil because the process of becoming one involves bending the very forces of life and death to your will, and often mass slaughter. Except if you're an archlich or a baelnorn.

Noah "The Spoony One" Antwiller: "If there's a way of being a non-evil lich, I'm calling bullshit."

    • Generally, Illithids are an almost universally evil alien race of psychic slavers. The obvious justification being that they have to be, to survive. Not only does their life-cycle demand the sacrifice of sapient humanoids for new illithid to come to be, but they gain nourishment from sentient brains. Eating the brains of non-sapient animals helps, but not all that much. End result: a species that, to survive as a species and to a lesser degree as individuals, both have to consistently and repeatedly act in ways that the rest of universe classify as evil, and it's easier for them to actually be. The Elder Brains that rule their civilization are even worse. In Spelljammer they are not very different, but in general are much less aggressive and more cooperative with the others. The eponymous ship also played host to some fairly decent Illithids who peacefully coexisted with the other races and fed on a special type of mold (that of course was secretly sapient in large quantities, or they wouldn't be able to derive nourishment from it). There's even a Lawful Neutral Illithid NPC (an obsessive Adventurer Archaeologist). In the Forgotten Realms, there is one known good Illithid, and that one is a very unusual case. Fortunately for everyone else, Illithid society is a mere shadow of what it used to be thanks to their former slaves, the Githyanki, rising up against them. As a result, the Illithids are pragmatic enough to rein in their desire to eat brains long enough to trade and make deals with other races. That said, your chances of leaving with your brain intact after running into an Illithid in a dark alley all alone are still next to none.
  • As of the most recent edition, Gamma World has actually turned several monster species that used to be relatively peaceful in earlier editions (like the Menarls, Grens, Sleeths, and Orlens) into this.
  • Warhammer Fantasy Battle Fantasy is rather dark for a fantasy setting, though not quite to the extent of Warhammer 40,000. There are actually a few good guys. Evil races include Demons, Beastmen, Orcs, Goblins, Undead, Skaven, Dark Elves, and Ogres. Also, one of the few times in which the "chaotic" part of Exclusively Evil plays a part, as pretty much every evil race can be traced back to mutations caused by Chaos, which is a powerful force in the Warhammer world.
    • Ogres are on this list for a somewhat different reason than other races. They live in a society that is based only on one rule. Might makes right. Their god could easily be a weird mix of Slaanesh and Nurgle, with gluttony and avarice being main virtues ogres value. Despite the fact that ogres seemingly follow many rules, one of their special characters had his hands chopped off for the crime of eating his leaders gnoblars, despite him being shaman for their god. What makes Warhammer ogres chaotic is the fact that while ogres can be negotiated with succesfully, unlike orcs and forces of chaos, ogres don't feel bad for eating you a second after the contract is done. One of their tribes actually value iron more than gold for the simple reason that with gold they can buy a weapon of iron, but with a weapon of iron they can have all of your gold.
  • For reasons beyond, everyone in Warhammer 40,000. Tyranids want to eat everything organic, no exceptions. Necrons are also all committed to their goal of killing all organic life. On the other hand, everything that is sentient gets a chance to be good, misinformed, or at least a justification to how they got there. Still, however, it's only a spark lit in deep space at most.
    • The Dark Eldar ultimately subvert the trope. They can only stay alive and young by murdering and torturing as many people as possible, so their entire culture is based around killing and butchering people. And if they can't find people of other races to do it to, well... However, they are still considered part of the larger race of Eldar by their kin, who vary wildly in Character Alignment. It is possible for Dark Eldar to get sick of being Chaotic Evil and join some other Eldar faction, ultimately blending in entirely with their new comrades. With that said, any Eldar living in Commorragh is going to be evil... or prey.
    • Then there are the Orks, who just have no fear of death, think killing is loads of fun, and aren't smart enough to realize that the other species disagree (though the other species themselves don't help). In fact, in any non-Crapsack World, they'd probably be a pretty big subversion of this trope.
  • Carrying on from the HP Lovecraft example up in Literature, many, many creatures in Cthulhu Tech are invariably sociopathic mass-murderers. For example, the Dhohanoids are almost invariably driven violently insane by the Rite of Transfiguration.
  • Rifts uses this trope about as much as everyone above, but also provides the interesting case of the Faustians in the Phase World setting: An Exclusively Evil race that got on the wrong side of a war against an Evil Empire even worse than them, forcing them to run to The Consortium of Civilized Worlds to survive. Being exceptionally Genre Savvy that day, the CCW put the Faustians on a rather strict probationary membership, leaving the Faustians to harshly police their own bad sides. If even one of them pulls off any large-scale villainy, they all get booted out and right back into the waiting fangs of the Empire.
    • There is also a possible justification in an NPC's history in Rifts Mercenaries: a "renegade" Tauton's story talks about how he was basically taught to hate and be almost mindlessly aggressive against other races. He didn't like it, and got out as soon as he could.
  • The Steve Jackson Games' RPG In Nomine happily guts this trope alive: it probably has more non-evil "Bright Lilim" than real, evil demon Lilim.
    • Well, in the canonical story, Bright Lilim are very rare, but yeah, many players love playing Bright Lilim, for the same reason people like playing good-aligned Drow in Dungeons and Dragons and stuff like that: because people like to be "original".
  • In Exalted, we have demons, who may or may not have anything against gods, mortals, and Exalts personally, but are completely incapable of disobeying their vengeful progenitors, the Yozis.
  • Magic: The Gathering has a few of such races, given how long the story has gone on and how many planes have been detailed, but the most prominant would be the Phyrexians, who served as the villains of the plot for years in real-time. With a few exceptions, every last one of them is a Complete Monster.
    • Even still, Phyrexians in their newest form seem to move away from this trope. Ever since the Phyrexians took over Mirrodin, turning it into New Phyrexia, there have been five different factions corresponding to each of the five colors, and each being lead by a praetor, each with their own brand of pitch-black evil...Except the red praetor, Urabrask the Hidden, who, true to his red mana alignment, is a lot more individualistic and merciful than the other praetors, and therefore leads the only Phyrexian faction capable of free will and compassion. Probably due to this, he is the only Phyrexian leader who plots against the other praetors not simply to gain power but to actually work against Phyrexia as a whole. This is mainly due to the fact that Phyrexia's primary goals strongly go against two of red's strongest points: freedom and emotion.


Video Games[edit | hide]

  • Pretty much anything a player is expected to kill in a video game falls into this trope. The vast majority of the time, one's foes are irredeemably evil and deserve to die for no other reason than that they oppose the player. There's no diplomacy, no bargaining; the only reasonable response is death.
  • Deconstructed in Xenoblade Chronicles. Shulk swears revenge on the Mechon following their attack on his home. This isn't seen as a particularly bad thing as they're just soulless killing machines... then it turns out that the Faced Mechon actually have members of his own Homs species inside them. Worse still is the fact that the Mechon aren't the native species of Mechonis... the Machina, who are just as humane as the Homs and who built the Mechon, are. Upon realising that his Roaring Rampage of Revenge against the inhabitants of the Mechonis would take sentient life, he ultimately swears off it and begins his Character Development.
  • The residents of Xylvania in Battalion Wars take this to such extremes that they're practically a parody. They're Naziesque Vampires who live in a Mordor-like wastleland and are descended from Steampunk orcs.
  • The qunari in Dragon Age II are made out to be this because of their reputation as militant conquerers. In reality, they're more like a race of Lawful Blue Well Intentioned Extremists. Unfortunately, their negative image is far too often exploited by the local Manipulative Bastards.
  • Lampshade Hanging in Star Control II: the Ilwrath position themselves as supremely evil. If the player confronts them over this ("If your actions are judged by your society as correct, aren't you, in fact, good?"), they tie themselves into a logical knot before deciding to attack the player for being annoying.
    • Subverted in the case of the Big Bad race(s) of the Ur-Quan. While the first game portrayed them as typical Evil Overlords, the second explained their origin and gave them more complexity. They were a race of slaves, and believed that to protect their own freedom, they must thus enslave everyone else. However, they never destroy unnecessarily, only conscript those races who volunteer as battle thralls, and will even accept your surrender no matter how many of them you have killed (though this still means Game Over). The Kohr-Ah subrace, however, plays this a bit straighter. They believe they should just kill everyone (though they aren't overly impolite about it, and will actually explain themselves when asked properly).
    • Also played straight with the Dnyarri, the former psychic slave-masters of the Ur-Quan and the Sentient Milieu, who are confirmed by anyone who knew of them to have been an entire race of Complete Monsters. They turned the entire Milieu into an enormous Gulag and casually exterminated those races that didn't perform up to their standards. They were so horrible that, even tens of thousands of years later, both Ur-Quan societies are still centered entirely and insanely around preventing ever being enslaved again. At one point, the Ur-Quan Kzer-Zah can tell you that dying a thousand times would be far preferable to living under Dnyarri control.
    • The Umgah, while not as aggressively malevolent as the Ilwrath, are a race of rather cruel tricksters. Some of their "practical jokes" include tricking the cowardly Spathi into fighting for the Ur-Quan instead of being placed under a protective shield, tricking the Ilwrath into committing genocide on the Pkunk, and inadvertently reviving one of the aforementioned Dnyarri in an effort to start a war within the Hierarchy (this one backfires big time). They consider all the death and suffering they cause to be hilarious.
  • Originally, the monsters that the title brothers of Super Mario Bros.. fought were just generically evil. (Indeed, Bowser's original title was Daimaou, or "Great Demon King".) However, later games with Role-Playing Game tendencies have Monster Towns with the implication that the ones who joined Bowser are just jerks (or Punch Clock Villains who form True Companions). Bowser himself has gone through considerable Villain Decay, although in most of the RPGs, he's on your side for his own reasons (and let's not enter Go-Karting with Bowser...).
  • In general, in most old action video games (Metroid, Mega Man, The Legend of Zelda...), the enemy races rarely ever have any good counterparts, at least none that you ever see. In fact, for many of these old games anyone (and anything) visible aside from the player is evil.
    • Even in those games, there are subversions: Metroid featured the baby Metroid of the second and third games, Mega Man eventually had Proto Man, and even the very first game in The Legend of Zelda series had a few Moblins go AWOL and ask Link to leave them alone in exchange for a few Rupees. IT'S A SECRET TO EVERYBODY.
    • In the Mega Man X series, most/all of the enemies were originally good; it is the Zero Virus/Sigma Virus that rewrites their programming, causing them to go maverick (though, since the Reploids do—at least those uninfected—have free will, it's possible that some did choose to be evil). Ironically, one of the few good robots that actually gets screen time apart from X is Zero, and he was originally programmed to be evil.
    • Also nicely subverted in The Legend of Zelda Twilight Princess, where the Aesop was that not everything that looks evil necessarily is; the Bulblins certain seem to all be annoying little goblins who kill you just for the heck of it, but you eventually find out that King Bulblin, the Recurring Boss, is actually quite intelligent. After you beat him at Hyrule Castle, he defers to you as a Worthy Opponent.

King Bulblin: Enough. I follow the strongest side!... That is all I have ever known.
 Midna: Link... He... he spoke.

  • Oddworld is a brilliant example of this. Species like Glukkons, Sligs, and Vykkers are all evil species, and on the same side too.
  • The first two Warcraft games used to have the monster races be more malicious, the main example being the Orcs. As the games progressed, the Orcs became likable protagonists with their own culture. The canceled game and resulting book, Lord of the Clans, explain how the Orcs redeemed themselves and became a Proud Warrior Race, while the Warcraft 3 manual states that they had been corrupted by the Burning Legion. The Scourge (and the Burning Legion) became the bad guys for the game, while the Horde and the Alliance even banded together to defeat them. By this point, the only things that started off evil are the demons and possibly the Old Gods. Even some of the demonic races have had some friendly members.
    • In another example, the Eredar were originally represented as an irredeemably evil race of demons who corrupted the mightiest warrior among the Titans into the Big Bad and enslaved the Orcs. Inexplicably, they became a race of honorable beings who were corrupted by the Big Bad's own festering corruption. This happened through a Retcon in the World of Warcraft Expansion Pack Burning Crusade, after the third game and its expansion as well as four books and a trilogy presented them as completely evil. The creator of Warcraft, Chris Metzen, has admitted this was something of a train wreck, but sticks by his decision.
    • However, many enemy races, particularly the Gnolls, the Harpies, the Troggs, nearly all demons, the Naga, and the Murlocs are (almost) Exclusively Evil. Most of them have individual exceptions or motivations, though.
    • The Black Dragonflight is this after Neltharion became corrupted and his name was changed to Deathwing, as they enjoy killing and only follow orders from dragons strong enough to kill them. The other dragonflights consider them beyond redemption. The one possible exception being an uncorrupted black dragon egg.
    • Some demons like the Nathrezim (aka. the Dread Lords), Ered'ruin (Doomguards), Sayaad (Incubi), and Mo'arg(felguards seem to have always been evil. The entire race is so evil that their mere existence convinced Sargeras that the Titans' mission to bring order to creation was futile.
  • Kamal Re'x, the leader of the Hierarchy's invasion of Earth in Universe At War, gives this trope as an excuse for their actions—it's "their nature". Given that he's giving this excuse to a Hierarchy military commander who staged an ultimately unsuccessful rebellion after cynically tiring of its corruption and its constant senseless warfare, it doesn't exactly ring true.
  • Final Fantasy XI has the player start off thinking that all beastmen are scum, but then has you find out that most of them are fighting the player races for various reasons. The Quadav are only in conflict with Bastok due to the fact that Bastok kinda tried to take over the Quadav's homelands, and have since been in constant combat with them over land and resources. Then, there are the Goblins, who are less evil and more willing to do anything to make a buck.
  • The Gnosis of the Xenosaga series appear at first glance to be a fairly typical all-evil, human slaying alien race. The truth turns out to be a bit different from that, but they're still all homicidal to the end.
  • Tediz in Conker series. Especially in the remake where they are biological beings instead of robots and are more free thinking.
  • In the Pokémon Mystery Dungeon games, Poison type (especially pure poison) Pokémon (with the sole exception of Bulbasaur) are eeeeeeevil.
    • And if their Pokedex entries are correct, Gyarados, Tyranitar and Hydreigon seem to have a natural tendency towards violence. You could view them as dangerous animals and not truly evil but one qualifier for chaotic evil is being too dumb or simple to know any better...
  • Subverted in Chrono Trigger, where the Mystics seem to be evil at first, but it's later shown that without Ozzie's influence, they can live at peace with the humans.
    • Though it could be argued that they were never evil, they just weren't on the side of the humans. It wasn't good vs evil, just one side vs another, even if they did use the undead and other "evil" things.
  • The Mass Effect series subverts this a lot; the Reapers are the only ones that fit best.
    • Ardat-Yakshi are asari who blow out their mates' nervous systems. They grow stronger with each meld and the power is addicting. Since it can't be cured, asari who become Ardat-Yakshi are either executed or sent to isolated convents. One of the Ardat-Yakshi appearing in-game is a psychopathic predator with no regard for the lives of others. The other two are substantially more rational, with one sacrificing herself to try to stop the spread of Reaper-controlled Ardat-Yakshi.
    • The rachni were viewed as a vicious enemy, responsible for plunging the Citadel into a near-pangalactic war, but they're much more peaceful in reality, and were brainwashed by something into warring against the galaxy.
    • The best subversion comes from the geth. They were the robotic mooks that served Saren Arterius in the first game, acting as your main opponents at the time, returning in the second game as less prevalent, but still recurring adversaries. In the first game, the geth worship Saren's ship, Sovereign, as a god - the pinnacle of synthetic evolution - and were responsible for driving their creators out of their homeworld. As it turns out, the geth were starting to discover their place in the universe at large, but the quarians essentially jumped the gun out of a paranoid fear over their robotic "slaves" turning on them. Furthermore, the geth you faced in the first and second games are from a splinter group that believe their future should be guided by more advanced pseudo-lifeforms. The main hub of geth just want to be left alone to build their Dyson Sphere and achieve true unity; they even take care of the quarian homeworld in the absence of their creators. If given the chance, they'll agree to share the homeworld with their creators, and even enthusiastically help them rebuild and readjust their immune systems to their old planet.
    • The vorcha are universally seen as aggressive, unpleasant, and vermin-like murderers, salvagers, and graverobbers; the only ones you encounter are Blood Pack mercenaries, as well as a group that created and distributed a plague on a station filled with millions. However, like Tolkien's orcs, the vorcha are more a product of their environment than anything else; they only live twenty years, use combat as their main form of communication, are literally beaten into serving as cannon fodder for their mercenary ringleaders, and tend to grow up in a world where the slightest ounce of water is treated as treasure. Some background Codex-like trivia paint the vorcha as miners, settlers, and brewers, and there is also mention of vorcha trying to colonise a high-gravity world.
    • The yahg are the only other species played straight thus far, having a vicious pack mentality, a brutal nature even worse than that of the krogan, and butchering a peaceful ambassadorial envoy when they made first contact, as well as finding equality in general to be offensive, but we only ever meet one - on a DLC, no less.
    • Played absolutely straight with the Collectors, though. According to Mordin, they have "no soul" and "must be destroyed".
      • Again, this one fits the "artificially created" part, as they've been twisted by the Reapers and are mind-controlled by them.
        • Furthering this point, in the From Ashes DLC for Mass Effect 3, Collectors are seen as nothing more than husks. It is possible that all communication is done by the Eldritch Abomination Harbinger.
  • Subverted in Disgaea. Although the demons in this series openly claim that they're Exclusively Evil, Dark Is Not Evil and Poke the Poodle come to mind. They're closer to Chaotic Neutral than anything else.
  • Dragon Quest games often subvert this by having friendly NPCs of the same species of randomly encountered monsters, such as Guest Star Party Member Healie in Dragon Quest IV and an entire town in Dragon Quest VIII.
  • The Elder Scrolls averts this for the most part, as none of the various races and creatures are inherently evil, not even the Vampires. Daedra are probably Always Chaotic Neutral, though.
    • Played straight with the Dragons in Skyrim. According to Paarthunax, the one exception to this rule, all Dragons are inherently tyrannical and seek power. And even he has to resist the urge to revert to form everyday.
    • The Falmer weren't originally like this, but they have become twisted monsters after suffering for centuries under the rule of the Dwemer.
  • Fable has Hobbes, who are rather genial to people who join up with them...and happen to reproduce by transmogrifying children. .
  • The Super Mutants were portrayed as this in the first Fallout 1, mainly because their creator was the Big Bad. In all subsequent games, however, they're just as capable of good or evil as any other race.
    • On the other hand, the Master really and truly thought he was doing what was right.
    • Also somewhat justified, as most Super Mutants suffer severe brain damage during their conversion that leaves them without the mental capacity to be much more than The Usual Adversaries—reasoning more complex than "hit or shoot at that thing until it stops moving, then take its stuff or drag it off to be turned into another Super Mutant" is a bit beyond them. The good ones tend to be the ones that don't suffer this sort of damage.
    • The Legion, Fiends, and Powder Gangers, however, are viewed as the evil factions of the game. Most if not all companions who are sane will turn against you if you side with the Legion for whatever reason (either due to being a complete monster, to achieve Caesar's goals, or because they conflict with the Legion's interests), and even it's former Legate and co-Founder does not look too highly on the Legion and finds the Republic more tolerable.
  • The Brutes and Prophets from Halo. Though the only three Prophets ever characterized in any depth being the three that know without a doubt that humanity must die for the good of the Covenant.
    • Averted in the Expanded Universe and Halo Wars. The Brutes aren't always evil, if the Brute Chieftain is counted. Also, some fight dialogue in the series hints that Brutes have personal lives and genuinely think what they are fighting for is right.
      • Also averted with the Prophets in the Expanded Universe books. There have been decent Prophets, but Truth is not one of them.
  • Lurkers in Jak and Daxter started out like this. They underwent a Heel Face Turn by Jak II, however.
  • The Cragmites of Ratchet and Clank Future Tools of Destruction are shown to be this. Emperor Perceval Tachyon (the only one we see in the game before he found the dimension that they were banished to and brought them back) wants to take over the galaxy, and REALLY wants to pop Ratchet's head because the Lombaxes banished the Cragmites, raised Tachyon as one of them regardless of his origins, and because Ractchet's father was the guardian of the Dimensionator (the machine which teleported the Cragmites away); but still, there are no lifeforms who are neutral to Ratchet in the universe...
    • The Blarg from the first game may also qualify, though they have sympathetic motives and are apparently being manipulated by their leader, Chairman Drek.
  • The Bydo from R-Type are this trope taken to its logical extreme: they are composed of all the most evil and base instincts of mankind, utterly incapable of feeling anything Good whatsoever. And they are portrayed completely seriously. Let the thought of that sink in for a moment...
  • Most of the creatures you can recruit without resorting to torture in Dungeon Keeper are like this. Oddly enough, there is a hero-aligned Horned Reaper in the final mission of the first game, a creature who is often depicted as being the granddaddy of ALL the evil creatures in the game.
  • The Darkspawn of Dragon Age Origins.
    • Demons in Dragon Age also fulfill this trope, being dream spirits that prey upon mortals. These creatures are literally shaped by the darkest impulses of mortals and are generally murderous and violent. They're also one of the few sources of knowledge in Thedas about blood magic.
      • Demons are merely a sub-set of spirits, many of whom are shaped by Valour, Justice, Faith, and the like. It's just that the benevolent ones mind their own business instead of attempting leave the Spirit World, minus a few exceptions; those that do can end up becoming demons anyway, like how Justice was twisted into Vengeance by his host's anger.
    • Played with in the case of the darkspawn, according to the Architect. He states that the darkspawn are evil because the Song of the Old Gods forces them to be, and that if they are "freed" using Grey Warden blood, they attain sapience and free will. While the Architect is morally gray, with a darker past, a reckless disregard for consequences, and a very poor understanding of humans, you do meet at least one of his Disciples who proves to be downright heroic - though being a darkspawn, he still spreads the Taint accidentally.)
  • The Minions of Overlord are all of the Laughably Evil type. They follow the will of any current Evil Overlords and will happily pillage and slaughter in his name.
  • The Heartless in Kingdom Hearts are a sort of "souless evil" who seem to attack everyone on sight and have no personality.
    • Ditto the Nobodies, though this is disputed out-of- and in-universe.
  • In the 4X game, Galactic Civilizations, roughly half the playable civilizations are always evil. Humans are portrayed as always good, a questionable assertion.
    • Interestingly, status as "good" or "evil" is based only on choices made during random events; your civilization can embark on massive campaigns of galactic genocide and still be considered "good".
  • The Grox race from Spore are a race of cyborgs and almost always conduct raids on random races, making them being viewed as the galaxy's ultimate evil. This is actually a subversion, as the Grox are only reacting to the threat posed by oxygen-breathing life forms that gain the power of space flight, and inevitably use terraforming to spread their deadly (to Grox) oxygenated atmospheres to other planets. You can even ally with them, if you both prove yourself willing to spare Grox-inhabited worlds your terraforming AND prove your own race to be a powerful ally against other oxygen-breathing races, mostly by making a complete mockery of intergalactic law, blowing up their planets with wild abandon, and exhibiting the ability to survive in spite of the entire rest of the galaxy declaring war on you.
  • Ys II has some fun with this. Monsters are Always Chaotic Evil, but it's directly stated that they should be pitied, due to living only to fight and kill, rather than having full lives—and it's stated that despite this, they have varied personalities just like people. The Telepathy Magic-based monster conversations confirm their diverse personalities, and can make them seem sympathetic or likable...until one says something that bluntly reminds you that they're a race of The Usual Adversaries that are incapable of interaction with humans more meaningful than killing and eating them or holding them captive.
  • For Return to Krondor...Demons, Shadows, Goblins, Trolls, Ghouls, Vampires, Nighthawks, Zombies, Sidi's Necromancers, Izmali Assassins, and Bear's Mercenaries. Does that cover it? Oh, and at least two of these groups will form into alliances against you and James will wonder how that could be.
  • League of Legends - most of the resident Noxian and Zaunite Champions are not what you would call a nice group of people: being bloodthirsty assassins, hemomancers, and evil jesters. Those who are not evil are former prisoners of Noxus, who were forced into the fight pits or defected.
  • The Skedar from Perfect Dark. Their only goal seems to be the extermination of the Maian race and they don't seem to care how many humans they have to kill to do it.
  • Discussed in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim with Paarthunax, a dragon who chose to rebel against Alduin and aid the humans fighting his rule. He explains that dragons have an innate nature to dominate and destroy, and that he has overcome his own nature through thousands of years of constant meditation, and every day he has to struggle with his own inner nature which is driving him to hop off his mountain, fly down among the humans, and start eating and ruling over them. When confronted for his past crimes, he replies thusly:

What is better? To be born good, or to overcome your evil nature through great effort?


Webcomics[edit | hide]

  • The Dimension of Pain demons from Sluggy Freelance are quite openly evil, even using the phrase "How evil" as the highest form of praise. Their hatred of anything good is taken to comedic extremes, from being unable to stand the smell of flowers, to being called "dysfunctional" if they don't fight enough with their family, to considering a relaxing massage a form of torture. Despite this, many of them still manage to have their own distinct personalities. They may all be evil, but, like with human beings, greed and stupidity usually get in the way.
    • Many of the named characters among them seem to act evil towards humans, but not to each other. Others are humorously evil (or something) even amongst their own kind, for example, eating each other randomly.
  • The major theme of the D&D-based webcomic Goblins is pointing out that usually Chaotic Evil really does only mean usually...as well as exploring the root causes behind this, and whether it's even true (which, while debatable in real life ethics, is stated to be so in the rulebooks). To this end, the protagonists have run across a surprising number of evil humans and other typically good or neutral races (including Complete Monsters like Kore and Dellyn), while their typically chaotic or evil compatriots are either neutral, good, or driven to evil.
    • As an expected result of this conflict, a Knight Templar has already appeared.
  • Order of the Stick delves into it as well - one of the author's stated goals is to deconstruct the underlying racism this trope encourages.

Unlike Goblins, the setting is close to entirely consistent with the D&D source material. Out of several arcs involving a stuffed up Knight Templar Paladin who "generously" gives the main character Roy time to "improve" his behavior. He eventually gets her guard down by apologizing—then condemns her for her own faults. This is similar to the way in which "evil" races are treated - while the sociopathic serial killer in the troupe is occasionally given a free pass because he's a halfling (often harmless and jovial and cute) -- or more likely because, overall, he does more good than harm, even if not quite intentionally.

    • Subverted in a short series of strips in which the Order meets a group of teenaged goblins who are good-aligned—for the explicit reason that it cheeses off their parents, who are Evil. "Listen to me, young man, you will drink the blood of the innocent and you will LIKE IT!"
    • Redcloak's entire character arc from Start of Darkness can be seen as a Deconstruction of this trope: the goblins are formally designated as Evil Cannon Fodder by the gods, which doesn't sit too well with him when his family is slaughtered by crusading paladins. His ultimate goal is to give his race equal standing among the other major species of the world, but he slowly takes more and more horrific actions pursuing his plan to do so -- thus becoming the very thing that he objects to being labeled as. Is he evil because goblins are inherently evil, or because he has been designated as such?
      • Well, if you include hobgoblins, one hobgoblin sacrificed his life to save his leader's (even though Redcloak never did much to earn any loyalty). This is a pretty impressive "good" action, right? Except his leader is evil.
      • It's Lawful. The other part of the default hobgoblin alignment.
      • The question then would be: "Would that same goblin push a Good aligned character under the falling boulder?"
    • Doubly subverted when the Order of the Stick first runs into the Linear Guild. Vaarsuvius's counterpart is a dark elf named Zz'dtri who claims that he isn't evil, even though his race is Exclusively Evil. Nale explains that once Dark Elves became a player race, they became Chaotic Good and wanted to ward off their former evil reputations. Ultimately, the Linear Guild (Zz'dtri included, since they needed the OOTS to touch the sigils) turns out to be evil.
    • The Darth Vaarsuvius arc explores this as well. Vaarsuvius casually killed a black dragon in the Wooden Forest during the sidequest to get Roy's starmetal. No one had any moral qualms about it (not even Miko), because black dragons are Exclusively Evil, and it even named a trope! Much later, the dragon's much more powerful mother shows up when Vaarsuvius is alone, and she is pissed. She very nearly murders V's spouse and children, and V retaliates by using an uber-spell to wipe out 1/4 of the dragon's entire species. In the commentary, Burlew discusses the implications of this. The magnitude of this act was to show that if this was wrong, then it's no less wrong to invade a dragon's home and murder it for its treasure, regardless of its moral alignment.
    • What's more, two later comics show the full unpleasant ramifications of V's actions. By casting that Familicide spell, V not only killed off 1/4 of the black dragon population, but many Half Human Hybrids that were actually Chaotic Good, as well as their (relatively) innocent full-human mothers. The comics are here and here.
  • Rats are Always Evil in Freaks N Squeeks. It goes with What Measure Is a Non-Cute?—most of the cast are mice, with the similarly small and cute shrews standing in for Jews.
  • Demons in Dan and Mab's Furry Adventures are repeatedly stated to be Exclusively Evil by seemingly-reliable sources...but the Demonology 101 pages state that this is not actually the case, just the popular perception of them and most other Creatures.
    • Cubi, on the other hand—which are not actually demons in the setting—are quite explicitly stated not to be this in the comic itself, despite reputation—the evil ones just get all the press, because torturing or seducing people makes for a more exciting story than helping sick children.
    • The fae, on the other hand, seem to be Always Chaotic Neutral.
  • Some of the early humor of Yet Another Fantasy Gamer Comic depended upon this concept, as the comic has its roots entirely in older editions of D&D. For example, when the beholder Bob cheats on his goblin girlfriend Gren, he tries to justify it by pointing out that he's evil. Gren points out that they're both Lawful Evil, and goes on to cheat on Bob extensively, as is her right as the wronged party under goblin law. Most of the monster characters are so Affably Evil, though, that it sometimes feels jarring when they get around to doing some really bad stuff. They also occasionally point out how "good" folk is Not So Different - either only more hypocritical, or have effectively "out-eviled" them because both end up with the same crap, but "good guys" started farther from this.
  • Tech Infantry has the Bugs, created as a living biological weapon by a race of Sufficiently Advanced Aliens to use as a Redshirt Army against a race of alien Body Snatchers who are themselves very much Exclusively Evil. And any organization in this universe with "Security" as part of its name is pretty much guaranteed to be evil.
  • The Challenges of Zona has the Orc stand-ins, the Urtts, who Word of God assures us are all just plain evil, and we shouldn't give any pity to the ones maimed, charred, and dissected by the Heroes. Yes, even their half-human bastards.
  • Elves in Eight Bit Theater are all racist, genocidal narcissists whose history has been described as a lovesong to bloodshed and themselves. Their arrogance is also unjustified, as they prove to be no better than other races (for example, having technology on par with other races despite a 9,000 year head start), something that Black Mage and Red Mage tell Thief, the Elven Prince. Their national anthem begins "We're a race of total bastards." An anthem they stole.
    • The other races aren't much better. 8-Bit Theater is a Crapsack World, after all.
  • Parodied by way of Not So Different in this Bad Gods comic by Lore Sjöberg.
  • In Harkovast, the Nameless Race cannot speak or think but are described as constantly marching to war. They have yet to do anything other than attack people, and are generally killed without mercy by the story's heroes.
  • Due to misconception and propaganda, everyone in Twokinds thinks everyone else is Chaotic Evil. The Petting Zoo People only deal with Human slavers and death-squads, human propaganda says the beastmen want to commit genocide (and therefore, the two speces generally treat the other as Orcs), and the other guys - a group of Brown Minion expies - think that everyone else is this.
  • Much like the above, werewolves in Cry Havoc are inaccurately portrayed by the church as Exclusively Evil, although it is questionable to what degree this is inaccurate given that the werewolves' first actions were to shred and eat a large quantity of people...
  • In Looking for Group, elves are supposedly this, but almost every elf we meet is actually pretty decent or has a Freudian Excuse to justify the alignment. The main character is actively trying to go against his race's reputation, and is the character most concerned with the morality of the group's actions. The undead may be this, but we only meet one group of them, and they are controled by the Token Evil Teammate.
  • Slightly Damned: Averted with Demons, although it is indicated that Buwaro is the only exception.
  • The Shadow Nexus from The Beast Legion are a group of deadly generals each with their own Beast forms, who's sole aim is to create chaos across the land of Lithopia and crush any who oppose the will of their Master, Dragos. In the very second issue, they invade the palace of Lithopia with full force, leaving only destruction in their wake.
  • The demons in Dark Souls are this, naturally. Undead that have lost their senses are this as well if they aren't huddled into a corner somewhere, crying.


Web Original[edit | hide]

  • In The Gamers Alliance, demons are initially shown as intelligent beings who cause suffering because they enjoy it. They used to be a noble race until their god Mardük went mad, which transformed them into their grotesque forms and twisted their minds into serving the destructive aspect of Chaos. However, eventually the heroes meet a few friendly demons and realize that despite their bloodthirsty nature not all demons are irredeemable monsters.
  • The Cthonians from the Global Guardians PBEM Universe. But then, they are based on Lovecraft's Deep Ones.
  • Averted for many traditional "monster races" in Tales of MU, especially the subterranean elves (don't call them "Dark Elves", and "Drow" is a serious racial slur up, there with "spider jockey" and "cowl head") who simply have a bad reputation due to cultural misunderstandings. Played more straight with Demons and Ogres, as well as mermaids.
  • Deconstructed in The Salvation War. The society in hell actively encouraged Chronic Backstabbing Disorder, You Have Failed Me..., We Have Reserves, and Shoot the Messenger. The result was an inefficient and unstable society that collapsed once it came under external pressure. Lampshaded on several occasions by baldrick defectors.
  • Heavily subverted in Mortasheen, where no creatures are inherently evil (well, except for the Dolfury), and they're all as loyal to their trainers as any Pokemon would be. Yes, that includes the scary mind-raping Devilbirds and the horrible, maddening Unknowns.
  • This trope is comprehensively picked to pieces in The Return where it's revealed that Succubus (Succubi? Succubae? Help me out here people) culture is possibly more complex and multidimensional than human culture, and, from their point of view, it is humanity that borders on Exclusively Evil.
  • Orion's Arm: worried that the descendants of Earth (humans, artificial intelligences, cyborgs, the genetically engineered, etc) think too much alike due to their creators' inherent bias, a group of AIs created the Bitenic Squids, a highly diverse species with every newborn member being a blank slate. Those that can function in the wider world are all completely selfish and without empathy, and go insane easily.
  • Largely averted in Adylheim where none of the playable races are defined by their race. Granted, this is partially a virtue of it being a Grey and Gray Morality world. Some of the non-playable races, such as trolls, have a tendency to fall into this category though.
  • There's also Sara Waite from the Whateley Universe.
  • The ktuvoks in the world of Verduria. Their entire society is based on Brainwashing humans who are less advanced than they into obedient slaves, and they are so good at it that if humans are freed from their control, the humans will ally themselves with the ktuvoks willingly. In addition, they attack all free human civilizations, using their slaves as Cannon Fodder, laying everything to waste and commiting every war crime in the book. They have no culture or learning to speak of, and merely steal the innovations of other races. And the worst part? The ktuvoks are severly restricted to where on the planet they can live; they cannot survive away from swamps. The only reason they take over much of the continent and turn humans into loyal Complete Monster slaves is For the Evulz.


Western Animation[edit | hide]

  • Supposedly, the Rhubarbarians from "Duke and the Great Pie War', a Veggie Tales episode.
  • On The Fairly OddParents, the anti-fairies are, or at least are believed to be, this. It's been stated that one is born for every fairy, and the newest one born, Foop, came straight out of his mother as a Card-Carrying Villain. It's also been said by Wanda that every genie is a Jackass Genie. So far, nothing has come up to contradict these claims.
  • The Decepticons in most versions of the Transformers. (Though the Decepticon Octane defected to neutral after he got in hot water with Galvatron.
    • There are also the various incarnations of Jetfire.
    • To say nothing of Dinobot from Beast Wars, as well as Waspinator's defection at the end of the show. It's played straight in Beast Machines, however, with the mindless drone vehicons. There's a scene from the last episode would have given Megatron's two space-launched generals a redemption, but it was cut.
    • The Quintessons are almost always this.
    • The spawn of Unicron are almost always every bit as evil as their master. The Minicons from Armada were an exception, though they were created for the sole purpose of giving the Autobots and Decepticons something to fight over.
  • Both invoked and averted on Gargoyles. All races portrayed onscreen (humans, gargoyles, fae, and New Olympians) are shown to have both good and evil members, but Demona views humanity this way, and the Quarrymen portray gargoyles like this in their recruiting campaigns.
    • Demona herself is one of very few evil gargoyles, the race as a whole is supposedly Always Lawful Good, having a near biological drive to protect and safeguard the places that they live and those places' inhabitants. It is, however, up to the individual gargoyle clans how they choose to interpret these drives, ranging anywhere from "Stay the hell away from my caves, filthy human scum" to "Here I come to save the daaaaay!"
  • The above fable of the Frog and the Scorpion is parodied in Robot Chicken, here.
  • On Jimmy Two-Shoes, weavils, so far, have been shown to be a race made up of completely Jerkass creatures who love to torment the citizens of Miseryville.
  • Birds in Happy Tree Friends are usually hostile...particularly the man-eating ducks. Come to think of it, this extends to most animals, including sharks, puppies, and, in one case, a wild bear. Basically, nature is out to get the HTF gang.
  • The Irken race, from which Invader Zim hails, is, as far as we know, entirely bent on conquering vast swaths of space. Zim himself may be an exaggeration of the Irken racial personality, but each Invader introduced seems to enjoy large death machines and lots of destructive fire.
  • Hornets and sewer rats in The Penguins of Madagascar seem to be this way. There are no species which can really be described as Always Lawful Good, so it may be a case of Black and Grey Morality as applied to whole species.
  • Futurama has a species of evil leeches, the "Dark Ones". All of the species lived at a single puddle, and yet all their evil was useless against a bag of cement, used to prepare the ground to be turned into a parking lot.
  • The Changelings from My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic. Their queen even gloats that ever since she was little, she dreamed of razing Equestria and essentially using ponies as food.