Hate Sink

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This character is typically found in stories that don't contain a true "villain", and are meant as a target that the audience can channel their dislike toward. Examples include disaster stories where there literally is no villain behind it all, films where a system or even an idea are the "villains" so to speak, and certain action movies where the villains are just too cool to hate.

This character is most of the time not the main villain, and is usually not a true antagonist at all. They aren't causing the struggle that the heroes must overcome, though their actions always make the heroes' job more difficult. Their list of character traits usually includes selfishness, stubbornness, greed, holier-than-thou contempt, and a simply inexhaustible ability to make bad decisions. Basically, they exist to be hated. Every action they perform and every piece of dialogue they utter is designed to incite rage in the audience. They usually get their comeuppance in a very audience-satisfying scene.

This isn't the same as Jerkass or Designated Villain. The key here is in the story that the character comes from. The writers are giving you someone to hate simply because the story needs an anthropomorphic "villain", but the character is sort of an afterthought to the actual plot. See also Villainy-Free Villain.

This can overlap with Love to Hate if the character's despicableness becomes enjoyable and memorable with the fanbase, though not necessarily.

Contrast with The Scrappy, who is an unintended example, or a villain who is hated for the wrong reasons.

Examples of Hate Sink include:

Anime and Manga

  • Candy Candy is a Slice of Life kind of story, so it has the Regan family (Ruth, Eliza and Neil) to fill the antagonist role. They (especially Neil) personify the worst traits of the Rich Bitch trope, and are guaranteed to gain the reader's wrath. Worse, they're usually Karma Houdinis, which makes the moments when they finally pay for their actions a spectacular sight to behold.
  • Kill la Kill: Satsuki invokes this trope for the first half of the series. She intentionally makes herself the target of Ryuko's hate, even suggesting she had something to do with her (or, better said, their) father's murder to fuel her hatred. She did this so Ryuko will be powerful enough to join the battle against the Big Bad Ragyo.
    • A straight example would be Nui Harime, the actual killer. A sadistic, disgustingly childish madman bordering on Villain Sue, it was made clear she existed to be hated. Nui herself lampshades this, stating hate and love are pretty much the same thing, and wants to earn love by making everyone hate her. She succeeded.
    • And she's nothing compared to Ragyo Kiryuin, Satsuki's mother who turns out to be Ryuko's mother too. She's considered to be the "Worst Anime Mother Ever", and for very good reasons, given her sexual abuse of Satsuki, her experimenting on and ditching Ryuko as a baby, raping Ryuko mentally (and possibly physically too), and being the one who created Nui in the first place, with her "raising" being the reason why Nui is such a Hate Sink as well, making her a Jerkass Woobie in retrospect. The fact she doesn't have a reason for being evil apart from liking it doesn't help in the least.
  • Played with Dio Brando. At the start of Phantom Blood, he plays this trope straight, being a disgusting bully towards Jonathan, turning his peers against him, stealing his girlfriend's First Kiss, and burning his dog alive. Upon getting his vampire powers and his resurrection in Stardust Crusaders, however, he becomes the cool, memetic villain fans Love to Hate, with the Hate Sink mantle being passed on to some minor villains (J. Geil, Steely Dan, etc.)
  • Griffith from Berserk, possibly the most hated character in the entire genre of Anime. His fall from grace leading to the murder of his trusted and loyal allies for makes his name synonymous with "betrayal".
  • Admiral Akainu from One Piece, a man who believes the end always justifies the means, a man who has committed some of the gravest atrocities in the series in the name of Justice. Slaughtering civilians, using blatantly untrue propaganda, his brand of "justice" seems to do little but cause more injustice. Oh, and he murdered Ace right in front of Luffy.
    • Earlier on in the series there's Captain Kuro, who plotted to betray and kill his employer Kaya (even though she had done nothing to him and considered him to be her friend), along with his entire pirate crew to make sure that he could erase his old life as a pirate.
  • Shou Tucker from Fullmetal Alchemist. Look up almost any list of "Top 10 Most Hated Anime Characters", "Top 10 Anime Villains", or "To 10 Assholes in Anime" and you'd be hard pressed to find one that didn't include him in the 1 or 2 spot. He's Number 1 on the hated character list on the anime character database.Everyone hates this guy, even the author, and Anime America went so far as to disqualify him from her list simply because he's so easy to hate. To put it bluntly, he may not have committed genocide or plotted world domination, but this guy was so obsessed with maintaining his position as state Alchemist (their system's equivalent of tenure, sort of) that he turned his five-year-old daughter into an abomination by using alchemy to combine her with her dog. Not some Angry Guard Dog, mind you, the type who wouldn't hurt a fly. Clearly, Shou is beneath contempt, and was the only villain in the whole series who proved completely irredeemable.
  • Similar to Tucker, there's Malty Melromarc from The Rising of the Shield Hero. She made the False Rape Accusation that ruined Naofumi's life, and she spends her screentime corrupting and ruining people's lives For the Evulz, her atrocities becoming bigger and bigger as time passes. Not even being a fragment of Medea saves her from this spot. Tellingly, she's the top 1 of both "Top 10 Hated Anime Characters Ever" and "Top 10 Hottest Girls with the Worst Personalities", and deservedly so. Not to mention that ever since she was made to change her name to "Bitch", some fans seem to exclusively refer to her as such, for obvious reasons.

Comic Books

Film - Animation

Film - Live Action

  • Titanic: Billy Zane's character, Cal. He disparages the Picasso paintings; verbally and physically abuses Rose; tries to have Jack killed; is exposed to care more about money than Rose; and finally cowardly escapes on a lifeboat using a small child. Although he survives, he is deprived of Rose in the end, loses his money through bad investments and ultimately puts a pistol in his mouth and that is the audiences' consolation.
  • Independence Day: The Secretary of Defense, Mr. Nimzicki (a.k.a. Foily McAntagonist). The aliens are inscrutable, have cool ships and bring the Monumental Damage and massive carnage that is the reason you bought the ticket. This guy knows about the aliens ahead of time but stays silent to give the President "plausible deniability." He continually pushes the use of nukes that are ineffective. He cockily celebrates victory too soon only to immediately be proven wrong. Finally he is the only person to disagree with the final plan that ends up working. His comeuppance is being fired by President Whitmore in person.
  • Aliens: Paul Reiser's company guy, Carter Burke. The aliens are already scary, so the filmmakers are hedging their bets by offering Burke as the weaselly company guy that only cares about money and fame. He knows about the aliens ahead of time and sends the colonists to investigate. He disagrees with nuking the site from orbit. He tries to impregnate Newt and Ripley with alien embryos with a plan to sabotage and kill the other heroes. Finally he cowardly retreats behind a door locking the other heroes out, where he is deliciously killed by an alien.
    • In the novel, he was to be found attached to a wall when Ridley went on her rescue mission to save Newt. Begging for death, she hands him a grenade instead. This scene was excluded from the film because it would take too long for a Facehugger to impregnate him from the time span of Burke being abducted to Newt being abducted.
  • The Mummy has Beni, the Dirty Coward who sells out the protagonists to the title character. Not only does he help Imhotep kill Mr. Burns, he also abandons Rick early on in the movie to die. This is why he dies such a horrible death...he betrayed everyone. Imhotep in contrast is sympathetic and the reason you bought the ticket for the movie (or got it on DVD in the first place), In The Mummy Returns, there's Baltuz Hafez, whose his spiritual successor. Like Beni, he's a Dirty Coward, but he takes it a step further by being the one who resurrects Imhotep in the first place, rather than Evelyn doing so by accident.
  • Die Hard: The reporter. The German terrorists/bank robbers have awesome accents and their leader is the perfect villain to love: intelligent, Wicked Cultured, and compassionate to the hostages, but swift and deadly toward the authorities and driven by greed. So who do you hate? The annoying reporter that ends up exposing who Holly McClane really is by threatening the McClane housekeeper with deportation and terrorizes their kids all for the sake of a story. Possibly the greatest comeuppance example: he is punched by Holly McClane at the end.
    • The coke-snorting yuppie asswipe who constantly badly flirts with Holly exposes John's identity to the terrorists, problably hoping to finally get her in the sack. He ends up getting shot in the head by the terrorists.
    • To a somewhat lesser degree, the two Agents Johnson (no relation). The are rather disrespectful to Powell and the other police, unknowingly play into the robbers hands by cutting the power, and are perfectly fine with allowing some of the hostages to die if it means getting the villains.
    • The same reporter gets zapped with a stun gun by the same Holly McClane in Die Hard 2 after revealing on international TV that the airport has been hijacked, thereby causing a panic that the authorities were desperately trying to avoid. William Atherton seems to have made a career playing jerks we love to hate. Speaking of which...
  • Ghostbusters: Walter Peck, probably the quintessential Obstructive Bureaucrat. You can't hate ghosts or Gozer. But this pencil pusher is pissed that someone has the audacity to be as cool as the ghost busters. So he shuts their containment system down causing the climax of the movie.
  • Twister: Cary Elwes plays the corporate-backed scientist Jonas. You can't rage at the tornadoes, right? They're a force of nature, and they inspire awe in the heroes and give them purpose. But this guy "sold-out" and got corporate funding, making him a puppet of The Man (and why would a scientist ever want funding?). His team travel in four sinisterly identical black SUVs compared to our Ragtag Bunch of Misfits' ragtag assortment of vehicles, he's a hack that doesn't know the true science and just copies the heroes or relies too much on the instruments rather than the clairvoyant way that Helen Hunt just stares at the storm and knows which way it will go. Ultimately, his whole team is sucked into the storm when he arrogantly ignores the heroes' warnings.
  • Sean Parker from The Social Network. In a story full of Gray and Gray Morality, he's the closest character portrayed as an outright villain due to what a Jerkass he is.
  • Harvey Baylor in the laughably awful Planet of the Dinosaurs. The protagonists have all crash-landed on a far flung planet inhabited by prehistoric creatures, with no way to contact Earth and little hope of being rescued. Harvey proceeds to whine indiscriminately about how he's the Vice President of Spaceways Incorporated (and therefore their boss) and he can get them all fired, complains about having to do so much walking with no clear endpoint, and repeatedly sexually harasses his secretary. You can't hate the dinosaurs because they're dinosaurs (and barely put in any appearances in the movie anyway), and you can't hate the planet because it's a planet. But BOY can you hate Harvey Baylor! Thankfully he dies about halfway through the movie by being fatally gored by a Centrosaur and tossed off a cliff.
  • You can't hate the titular eldritch abominations from The Langoliers (especially since they're just a creepy noise closing in from over the horizon for most of the story), and there's no one to really blame for stranding the characters in the past. But there's Toomy. Hateful, spiteful, assholish, with Freudian excuses and issues stacked high, who annoys, irritates and backstabs. Yeah, you can hate Toomy. You can't not hate Toomy. He gets eaten by the title Clock Roaches near the end of the movie.
    • In a similar Stephen King example, in the live action production of The Mist, the monsters are terrifying but you can't completely hate them because they don't appear to be acting with true malice. They're just following their instincts to eat and reproduce. But boy, oh boy, can you ever hate Mrs. Carmody, the shrill, hateful Jesus freak who looks down her nose at anyone who isn't as "righteous" as she is and whipped the mob into a religious frenzy that almost resulted in the murder of the protagonist's young son.
    • Let's go for King story number 3: Percy Wetmore in The Green Mile. You can't hate the racism in the '30s that put John Coffey on Death Row; you can't hate the system for making sure he'll die in the electric chair; and you sure as hell can't hate Old Sparky itself. But you can definitely hate Percy, who uses the fact that he's the nephew of the governor's wife to duck authority at every turn...even after deliberately sabotaging the execution of a convict he particularly hates and having him literally fried alive. His comeuppance comes in the form of Mr. Coffey, who "uses him as a gun" to kill a more proper villain, William Wharton, then leaves him catatonic.
  • Carl Anhauser from 2012...is a subversion of this, surprisingly. While he acts like a dick for much of the movie and occasionally lashes out at people, he's still trying to keep as many people alive as possible, and the movie never really paints him as a completely bad person.
  • Jurassic Park: Donald Gennaro, the lawyer. Specifically because of how different his character is in the book from the movie. In the book he is actually fairly competent and brave, not the useless, spineless one-dimensional character in the movie, illustrating the screenplay writers needed someone the audience to focus some hate on, because you can't hate the heroes or the dinosaurs right? He's the only person to not see any problem with cloning dinosaurs, shows his stupidity on the tour by asking if the live people are autoerotic (perhaps confusing the word animatronic?), and then abandons the children during the scene with the T-Rex. His comeuppance of getting eaten sitting on the toilet is masterful.
    • Ironically, the novel version of John Hammond fills the role very nicely; he's an arrogant, rich bastard used to getting his own way, whose refusal to listen to criticism ends up getting numerous people killed. His comeuppance is falling prey to the dinosaurs himself at the very end, after it seems as though they're safe. In the movie he's upgraded to a nice old man whose only fault is naive overconfidence and sexism in survival situations.
  • Resident Evil: Afterlife: Kim Koates plays the annoying Bennett, a movie producer trapped in an L.A. prison with a few other survivors. His character is the classic hatesink - utterly one dimensional and can be lifted right out of the story. He is rude, selfish, and disagrees with every other main character on decisions. When things start to go wrong he shoots a fellow survivor and then escapes in a small plane leaving the rest behind. Then in the climax he does the bidding of the main evil character so that he is saved. But he gets his just deserts when the heroes kill the main villain and leave him to be eaten by some unseen horror.
  • Unstoppable: You can't hate a runaway train, but you can hate Obstructive Bureaucrat Galvin. His comeuppance is that he loses his job afterwards.

Literature

  • In the Malazan Book of the Fallen novel Deadhouse Gates the Chain of Dogs (a massive host of refugees marching across the continent) is constantly being attacked by enemy armies, but our viewpoint character for these sections of the story never gets more than a few glimpses of the enemy leaders. Without a face or personality to put to them, it's hard to dislike the armies of the Apocalypse on a personal level. Instead we're invited to vent our loathing upon a group of whiny nobles within the Chain of Dogs, who protest the Canon Sue's actions at every turn, are openly cruel to their servants, and get a lot of their fellow refugees killed through incompetence.
  • Harry Potter gives us Dolores Umbridge. In a book in which the Big Bad Voldemort is laying low, she takes the stage as the main face of opposition, and is still the character most hated by many fans. While Voldemort was never seen as the slightest bit sympathetic, he is so cartoonishly evil that he's hard to take seriously on an adult level, and so singleminded (and subsequently flawed) in his purposes that he's more like a force of nature than a person. Umbridge, on the other hand, is a good demonstration of what you get when you take a bigoted, hypocritical shrew and give her authority, and is so plausibly cruel in the course of her travesties of justice that readers find their blood seething with her every word and deed. This goes to the point that J. K. Rowling herself had to state she was tossed into Azkaban for life for her crimes at the end of the final book. Fans would have much preferred throwing her to the Dementors, if not for the fact that she has clearly has no soul for them to take.
  • Since there's no real villain in Flight 116 Is Down by Caroline B. Cooney, the audience gets to focus their hatred on Darienne, a selfish passenger who ends up being completely unharmed in the crash. Heidi and Patrick work hard to save the passengers of the crashed plane while Darienne stands around doing nothing but complaining and being useless, yet she tries to take credit for saving people at the end. Even Patrick loses his cool when Darienne gets too much to handle.
  • Push, and subsequently its movie Precious, has Precious' Abusive Parents Carl and Mary. Carl is an horrendous Domestic Abuser who has been raping Precious since she was a child, leading to two pregnancies and her being infected with HIV as a result, while Mary beats and insults Precious to no end going as far as blaming her from being raped and make her fall from the stairs with her newborn son. While Mary's villainy gets reduced in the movie to the point of giving her a mildly sympathetic breakdown at the end, she still qualifies as this trope. Mary's actress Mo'nique even won an Oscar for how successful she was at portraying this trope.
  • Speak runs on Teens Are Monsters who basically ostracize the protagonist Melinda for calling the police at a party a year prior, with some examples being Rachel, Melinda's former best friend; and Heather, who dumps Melinda for popularity. The worst of them all is Andy Evans. Why? He raped Melinda at the party, traumatizing her and initiating the whole shabang, and it's eventually revealed he assaulted many more female students prior. In the climax, he tries to assault Melinda again when she ruins his reputation, even going as far as saying she enjoyed it. This time, though, Melinda kicks his ass, and subsequently he suffers an off-screen but equally satisfying beatdown from the female hockey team.
  • The Percy Jackson series has Gabe Ugliano, who is the last husband you would want to have as a woman. Not only does he hit his own wife, but when she allegedly dies, he’d actually happy about it, because he gets the payout money from her life insurance. And yes, there’s the implication that he would eventually be accused of murdering her. And he also treats his son Percy Jackson much the same way. Thankfully, Percy’s mother eventually finds a much better husband.

Live Action Television

  • Persons Unknown: We don't know who's behind the kidnappings of our main cast, but Bill Blackham, played by Sean O'Bryan, seems to be a repository for all the negative reactions one could have to being kidnapped and placed in a ghost town. Everything he does is selfish or irrational, especially his forcing Janet's gas mask away from her (which backfires), trying to rape Tori, and blackmailing Charlie when he finds out about Charlie's possible Mercy Kill / serial killing of his wife.
  • Game of Thrones:
    • Joffrey Baratheon is this trope personified. He's one of the most evil villains on the show, and obviously the winner of the "Face You'd Most Want to Punch" award. He's a viciously stupid dog-kicking machine with no redeeming features, and is hated by everyone In-Universe and out. When he kicks the bucket in Season 4, only Cersei mourns his death, and even she admits her son is a monster. He got so despised George R.R. Martin himself congratulated Jack Gleeson (Joffrey's actor) for his skills at achieving this status! Not that Gleeson himself was fond of the character; he claimed in an interview that he hated Joffery as much as anyone else.
    • Ramsay Bolton isn't any better. All his screentime being performing unspeakable atrocities for the fun of it. His Humiliation Conga and subsequent Karmic Death prove to be even more satisfying that Joffrey's, since his house goes down along with him.
  • Lizzie McGuire: The show in question takes place in a realistic setting, so it doesn’t have any villains. It does however have mean girls that antagonize Lizzie McGuire, the protagonist. While Kate has a tendency to act selfish, that is not to say she doesn’t have redeeming qualities. However, her best friend Claire is even worse than she is, and she doesn’t have the redeeming qualities she does, meaning that she isn’t designed to be sympathetic at all.
  • Skins has Josh Stock and Jal Fazer. The former drugs 14 year old Effy and tries to force her brother to have sex with her, purely out of spite. The later starts out as a likable character, but loses all sympathy when she has an abortion purely for convenience. Their Karma Houdini status doesn't help.
  • Super Sentai:
    • Great Professor Bias of Choujuu Sentai Liveman qualifies. While his three generals have sympathetic moments and were nothing more but tools to his grand plan, Bias is meant to be even more repulsive and deplorable as possible. He would go so far to dispose those who serve him have outlived of their usefulness.
    • Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger has Basco ta Jolokia, Marvelous's Arch Enemy. Basco is a two-faced, spiteful backstabber who will go further lengths to get what he wants. He's more willing to take anyone or anything for granted to achieve that goal, like killing off his own pet, Sally. And then, blowing up a school and harming children makes you want to despise him.
  • Maria La Del Barrio: Soraya Montenegro was clearly intended to be hated by the audience, being a sociopathic Yandere who goes out of her way to ruin Maria's life for petty reasons, treats everyone like absolute shit (especially her stepdaughter Alicia and her mother Nana Calixta, whom she eventually murders) and has no qualms about killing others to get what she wants, earning the contempt of everyone else in the show. Much like other villains like Dio Brando, Judge Claude Frollo and Yuuki Terumi; she became the most popular and memorable character in the series due to her delightfully over-the-top antics, spawning multiple memes (In particular, the infamous MALDITA LISIADA! scene)
  • Black Mirror is notorious for deconstructing the Asshole Victim trope, making despicable people like child murderers and even pedophiles sympathetic due to the horrific ordeals and final fates they go through. However, it still features straight examples of this trope:

Theater

  • Inspector Javert is the main antagonist of Les Misérables, but while he does make life miserable for Valjean, Javert honestly believes that he's the good guy and he's just trying to do his job and arrest what he believes to be a dangerous criminal (and Valjean technically is); and when Javert realizes that Valjean is really a good person through and through, it turns his world upside down, culminating in his suicide. So who can the audience hate? The Thenardiers, the cowardly comic relief thieves who abuse Cosette, loot bodies during the Revolution, and try to attack Valjean's house, which leads to Cosette being sent away to protect her.
    • They're a strange case in which the Hate Sinks are actually welcomed by the audience, due to them being the only source of levity in a bleak setting, as well as having enjoyable songs to boot.
  • John Dickinson of Pennsylvania in 1776. There are no real enemies among the delegates to the Continental Congress, and they have the shared goal of preserving the rights of the Colonies in the face of British rule, but they don't all agree on what's the best course of action. Dickinson, however, serves in the role of a "villain" for the piece for being the the most prominent and vocal delegate in opposition to Independence. But he's not opposing independence because he's evil, but because he honestly thinks it's a bad idea -- and when it passes, he resigns from Congress rather than sign the Declaration, then enlists in the Continental Army to fight in defense of the new nation anyway. (And unmentioned anywhere in the story is that 11 years later, he becomes one of the architects of the Constitution.)

Video Games

  • In Pokémon Gold and Silver, the evil Team Rocket organization only turns up three times and hardly drive the plot, and end up hardly detestable as a result. However, the story features many encounters with your rude, thieving, Pokemon-abusing, borderline-sociopathic rival, who is much easier to hate. Until he finally undergoes Character Development, that is.
    • Your rival in Red/Blue might count. He's not evil in any sense, but hes a rude, annoying braggart, always one upping you and WILL make you want to beat his face in. He gets better at the end of the game, though.
    • In Pokémon Black and White, the conflict of the story is between the player and N. So there's Ghetsis Harmonia, N's scumbag of a father, guaranteed to earn the player's hatred and disgust.
  • Final Fantasy X. As it's rather hard to develop much hatred for a giant, emotionless crustacean regardless of how many people it kills (and even harder to keep coming up with excuses to wind up in the ocean having boss fights with it), Seymour keeps popping up in the plot to provide a speaking villain for the party to fight on land instead of Sin. While he does have his own motivations and does get somewhat tied into the plot with Sin, his personal impact on the story itself is quite minimal overall aside from providing ever more complex boss fights after you kill him and he just keeps creating ever more elaborate boss forms for himself.
  • Resident Evil 2 is unusual for the Resident Evil series (along with Resident Evil 3) for not featuring Albert Wesker, since at the time he was thought to be deceased after the Tyrant impaled him in the chest (and even if he were, one could argue he's too cool to qualify for this trope). The main antagonist of the game, William Birkin, though responsible for Raccoon City being infected with the T-Virus (which inevitably leads to a nuke destroying the city when the zombies grow too numerous for even the military to handle), was shown to love his family and was simply trying to recover the G-Virus, his life's work, from Umbrella before leaving the company. So whose left to hate? None other than Brian Irons, the corrupt police chief who not only was responsible for keeping STARS from revealing the truth about Umbrella (even though both STARS and BRAVO were devastated by the creatures that they had created), but was also taking bribes from Umbrella, is violently aggressive towards women, prevents survivors from escaping Raccoon City (including his own men who he shoots when he believes that he is infected with the T-Virus), and last but not least, kidnaps the mayor's daughter and kills her so that he can stuff her as a trophy.
  • Volgin of Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater. His first action is blowing up his allies with a nuclear bomb, for the hell of it. However, despite being (relatively speaking) the Big Bad of the game, he's not the main antagonist - the game is much more interested in the relationship between Naked Snake and The Boss. Volgin simply serves as 1) A Homage and Affectionate Parody of James Bond villains; 2) a Foil to The Boss; and 3) a form of catharsis before The Reveal. Not to mention the fact that if it hadn't been for the stunt he pulled with the nuke, the entire series would probably had never happened.
    • Huey in Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain qualifies as well, even In-Universe. You can't really hate Skull Face too much when you consider his backstory, despite being a despicable villain otherwise. You can't really hate Zero once the truth about how he was betrayed by Skull Face and did what he could to keep Big Boss safe from him comes out (though it doesn't entirely excuse his actions), and you can't hate Cipher because they are Doomed By Canon anyway. However, everyone can hate Huey, because he committed biological warfare against his own allies, tried to use his son in his experiments, left the mother of his son to die when she opposed to this, and betrayed MSF to XOF long before that, only to switch side again because he heard Big Boss was back in town and wanted to get in his good graces to avoid having his treachery be exposed, the last one disgusting Skull Face himself.
  • Amateur Surgeon is a wacky medical comedy in which the patients are hilariously sympathetic criminals who can't be hated due to their hijinks, so we have the main villain of the entire series and Alan's arch-nemesis Dwayne Pipe. He's a sociopathic Serial Killer whom his horrible misdeeds include: killing a million patients (including Aureola's parents) and blaming Dr. Bleed for it (ruining their lives in the process); poisoning Bleed when uncovered and mocking Alan about it; disguising himself as The President and ruining Alan's life by closing his hospitals and making him lose contact with his family; forcing Bradley to kill Alan and beating him to near-death when he refuses to... All of this for revenge and fun. Every one of his deeds are taken in a much more serious way compared to the others, and settles his status as an horrifyingly dark villain in an otherwise lighthearted game. Not to mention, his levels are possibly the hardest in the entire game, making him a Goddamned Boss.
    • And if he wasn't hate-worthy already, he used his own clone, Hubris, as a pawn, becoming the Big Bad of the third game and carrying out the Evil Plan of poisoning everyone in sight in revenge for Dwayne's imprisonment. Oy...
  • Ace Attorney has a lot of horrible criminals, but these are guaranteed to earn the player's hatred:
    • The first game has Redd White, a slimy Corrupt Corporate Executive who thinks he can get away with his actions due to his money. He's especially hated due to him murdering Mia Fey, Phoenix's mentor and a fan-favorite character, and is extremely satisfying to render him a pathetic, begging wimp after his trial.
    • Matt Engarde from Justice for All proves to be even worse. Dahlia at least committed her murders partly to cover herself (and this applies to other villains as well), and has something of a tragic backstory that gives her a very slim bit of sympathy. Matt, on the other hand, has absolutely no excuse for his evil actions, driving to suicide his innocent ex-girlfriend out of spite and fun. Moreover, he manages to kidnap Maya Fey and forces Phoenix to defend him in court while gloating about it like the smug bastard he really is. God, is it satisfying to wipe his smug grin and seeing him break down in court at the end of the case, no matter the sentence you chose.
  • Grand Theft Auto V: While the main characters Franklin, Michael and Trevor are highly flawed criminals (especially Trevor), they're nowhere near as loathsome as the Big Bad Ensemble, Devin Weston and Steve Haines. Devin is one of the most despised GTA antagonists due to him acting like a cowardly and incredibly annoying Rich Bastard Man Child who goes as far as to send the military organization Merryweather to kill Michael's family, as well as forcing Franklin into betraying either Michael or Trevor. Steve, for his part, beats the crap out of Michael for the unforgivable crime of standing up to him, becoming more and more of a dick as the game goes on. Needless to say, choosing the C Option (leading to the "Deathwish" ending) is extremely satisfying despite its difficulty, since it allows to deliver these bastards the comeuppance they so deserve.
  • The Last of Us focuses on a Zombie Apocalypse full of Grey And Gray Morality, so it has David from the Winter Chapter, being a cannibalistic psychopath who tries to rape Ellie, with his boss battle being considered the most tense "Hide and Seek" level ever. Which makes it more of a relief when Ellie slams the psycho with a machete repeatedly.
  • Blaz Blue: Yuuki Terumi is a weird zig-zagged example. In-Universe, he's the personification of this trope, being a sadistic and cruel Troll who thinks of himself as the center of the universe, and ruins everyone's lives For the Evulz, to the point he even uses this trope to survive. Out of universe, though, he's beloved by the fans for his design, cool powers, accomplishments, and generally being praised for succeeding at being this trope.
  • Undertale invokes this trope with Flowey. For most of the game, he's shown as a repulsive sociopath who tries to kill you at the beginning of the game, steals the six souls you collected twice, uses his resetting powers to torture the player, and overall tries to prevent you from getting your happy ending. This is done to make The Reveal about him all the more effective: Namely, his true identity as Asriel Dreemurr, and consequently, the most tragic character of the game. As such, his status as this can be subverted with both the Pacifist Run (When he, as Asriel, recovers his compassion for enough time to apologize for his actions) and the Genocide Run (When he's killed by the Fallen Child while pleading for mercy, making his fate too horrifying to get any satisfaction from it.)
  • Animal Crossing has another invoked example in Resetti, in a completely opposite role to the aforementioned Flowey. His main job is to prevent players from resetting the game by acting as a deterrent, which means acting like a loud Jerkass by lecturing the player endlessly and forcing him to say certain words for the player to be left alone. It worked a little too well (there were reports of young children crying because of his attitude), so he was toned down in New Leaf by making him an optional feature, giving certain options when he appears to prevent his lectures, and emphasizing his pitiful traits and benevolent intentions. Don't expect fans to live his previous reputation down, though.
  • Digital Devil Saga doesn't have a clear cut villain, as all antagonists have legitimate reasons for what they do and have extremely cool traits to boot. Because of this, the duology gives us Serph Sheffield, Serph's human template and the catalyst for every tragedy in the story. He was a sociopathic Smug Snake who wanted to become God by performing callous experiments on Sera, whom he frequently manipulated at every turn; dismissing Heat O'Brien's concerns about it, and has him killed for trying to stop him, which led to Sera snapping and angering God himself, transforming him into a demon and killing him not soon after. Poor Serph was horrified about this, and when fighting him as the Fake Varna, he shows he hasn't changed one bit, which makes all the more satisfying when you finally kick his ass.

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Western Animation

  • Ed, Edd 'n' Eddy: the movie introduces the closest this series has to a Big Bad in the form of Eddy's previously unseen older brother, who changes most things of the entire series in their short-timed presence. Previously seen as The Ace, he's revealed to be instead a repugnant excuse for a brother who has been abusing Eddy all his life, making him the messed-up kid he is, and revealing to have lied abut him and himself in order to be accepted. What makes this character repulsive is his beatdown on Eddy and Edd is played mostly seriously, unlike anything else in this show, and everyone is absolutely repulsed by his actions. The reason why he exists is {{spoiler|to redeem Eddy and the rest of the kids for a well-deserved happy ending.
  • The Netflix animated series Bojack Horseman is all about showing how Horrible Hollywood can be, and as such, it has many characters worth the viewers' hatred and revulsion. That said, it provides a unique spin on this trope by making the Hate Sinks as three-dimensional as possible, either by showing some redeeming qualities (Vanessa Gecko and Rutabaga), genuine tragedies that made them the way they are even if their actions are still inexcusable (Beatrice and Butterscotch Horseman) or simply following the standards of the era (Beatrice's father Joseph Sugarman) The point is that, while they're horrible people whose actions can never be excused, they're still people whose role in the show isn't just commit horrible deeds for the sake of it, but rather to illustrate what kind of extreme Crapsack World would require to make them such Hate Sinks in the first place.
  • Recess has Randall, whose hated by pretty much every student at Third Street Elementary School. The reason for that? He's a snitch who rats out students to Mrs. Finster. He also happens to be a coward. For this reason, he's one of the enemies of the Recess gang. "Randall's Friends" reveals that he doesn't have friends at school, and it's not hard to see why. Even the Ashleys dislike him. Inevitably, Prince Randall (in which he obtains power over the playground by King Bob, due to Randall blackmailing Bob) has him become The Caligula.
    • The aforementioned Ashleys represent the mean girl stereotype. Though her first name is also Ashley, Spinelli has no intention of joining their group, and it's not hard to see why. Their first appearance alone has them jinxing Gus, which is far from fun for him. Though having said that, they are legitimately friends with each other. One Ashley was kicked out of the group for wearing the opposite color on Purple Day (which represents the day that they all met and became friends), but they eventually reconciled.
    • Lawson is basically a Spear Counterpart to the Ashleys. He's not the type of person that you would want to play sports with, as he is a very sore winner. One episode in particular had him stealing the fort the Recess Gang had worked so hard to build, and he and his gang of friends threw water balloons at them when they tried to take it back. It's not surprising he's Vince's rival when it comes to sports.
    • Miss Finster herself zigzags the trope...while she's regularly portrayed as a sadist teacher, it is shown in Recess: School's Out that she was against Dr. Phillium Benedict's idea of abolishing Recess. And she legitimately considers Principal Prickly to be a friend of hers. It's also shown that she's a nice lady when she's off the clock. And she actually does sew the Recess Gangs's pants when they rip, as embarrassing as it for them.