It's All About Me

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Evil Cannot Comprehend Good? Hardly! We understand the value of what good deeds we do, and how much we deserve in return for the most trifling sacrifice we give. People should be grateful to us. No, offsetting our mistakes by the good we've done is not sufficient; it's just ingratitude not to give us more, which is an injury.

And we understand that injury is evil—when it's done to us. We know how terrible it is that people Come to Gawk, and that they're lying when they say they didn't realize the character was there. We know how entitled we are to rescue—certainly before those Innocent Bystanders. We even understand the evil of breaking bargains that the other person hadn't agreed to, but unfortunately, we had assumed they would; little equals the rage of those proud few of us whose offer that We Can Rule Together is turned down—or a Femme Fatale turned Woman Scorned. And of course we know what punishment should be meted out for it.

Not even our True Companions are safe; they exist to be loyal to us, not vice versa. Indeed, we may sacrifice them for our own amusement. That's what they're there for. We may, of course, be angry at their harm or death at the hands of others, but that is because it removes a useful resource from our plans, or infringes on our authority. (As a consequence, a frequent source of inexplicable Mistreatment-Induced Betrayal or The Dog Bites Back. Why would they ever want to leave us?!) Similarly, if we reveal our intentions of betraying our superiors, and our subordinates revolt against us, we'll be shocked by the Rebellious Rebel's treachery—don't they know how good things will be when we succeed?. The hero's coterie, on the other hand, merely provides a good source of Revenge by Proxy. Romantic relationships are much the same, those from whom we crave affection must give all their love while we just take.

Conversely, doing us a good turn may result in a wide degree of gratitude and "reward" for our helper. It can range from understandably none at all to generous offers of a quick and painless death. More benevolent overlords, as of course we are, may offer a Shiny New Australia for a good manicure, or a lifetime of friendship. Of course, we might just be an Entitled Bastard and expect the world to always forgive and oblige us whenever we do wrong... but how often is that? Then there's times where we, regretfully, simply kill our benefactor; how dare they see us as weak?!

Nothing shocks us more than Shut UP, Hannibal Still more when someone says Get It Over With. What could be more interesting than what we have to say?

Milder forms may have an elaborate justification for why injuries to us are so serious and our good deeds are more generous than anyone else. Or we may attempt to Buy Them Off... if it's worth it. On the other hand, the very wise and powerful don't even comprehend that someone might judge our actions by the same standards as those with less potential for greatness. Some of us, on the other hand, may show their lack of evil by admitting that our behavior and our enemies' can be judged by the same standard.

Can be either totally selfish, arrogant, and greedy or, for a Well-Intentioned Extremist, totally oblivious to the idea that others can grant the same importance to their cause that they do.

Some may express the view that what they do is Dirty Business, but their sympathy is exclusively for themselves. "Having to do such horrible things, God rest our souls. The sufferings of our victims never disturb us - and why should we care about such bugs?"

May declare themselves Above Good and Evil, with our affairs being more important than petty morality. The disdain never applies when we have suffered an injury. When things are really rolling, we may even declare ourselves above humanity and as (or above) gods.

This does not cover characters who have a case: the Gentleman Thief for example only robs from those who can afford it, has saved several lives, and can reasonably argue that on the balance, he's done more good than evil. Of course, in those cases, the character is aware of what evil he has done, and is merely looking for clemency.

Contrast Evil Cannot Comprehend Good, where the character does not understand why the hero does not behave as selfishly as he does, but does expect him to act in his own interest. When the trope is Evil Cannot Comprehend Good, the villain can't understand why the hero saved him from falling; in It's All About Me, the villain can't understand why the hero insists on arresting him after. We said we were grateful, didn't we?! The least he could do is let us go!

Compare Protagonist-Centered Morality, where the author has a similar bias in favour of the protagonist. When a usually-good character is morally self-centered and it goes unnoticed, Moral Dissonance is present. Also compare Drama Queen.

Also see Moral Myopia, still more distilled. The Morally Myopic character at least acknowledges the rights of other characters in his own group. We suffer from moral blindness—if that's even the right word for it. Suffer, hah!

When the cause of the attitude is being raised in a family of great power and wealth, you have a case of the Sub-Trope Royal Brat. For religious cases, see Egocentrically Religious. Can cause Taking Advantage of Generosity.

Alas, Truth in Television, known as narcissism. Capable of reaching the heights of Narcissistic Personality Disorder. Sociopaths also frequently evince it. Also commonly related, both in-universe and otherwise, to Muse Abuse.

Examples of It's All About Me include:


Anime and Manga[edit | hide | hide all]

  • Parakewl from Tower of God. He demands that people sacrifice themselves for him, cares more about his scores than his comrades' deaths and after insulting everybody and fucking everything up, he demands to be saved because his dream is superior to those of the others.
  • Ryoki Tachibana from the manga Hot Gimmick. Although he's obsessed with Hatsumi he's usually far too up himself to ever do anything as pointless as care about her. His response to most of her (considerable) problems is "forget it, just focus on me".
  • The Homunculus Greed of Fullmetal Alchemist is, well, the embodiment of Greed, and therefore wants everything for himself and anything he does is for the sake of either himself or his own gain. He hates Wrath for killing his underlings - not because he particularly cares about them, but because they're his. Later, when a reborn and amnesiac Greed unknowingly kills off the last of them, he regains the memories of his old manifestation, as well as the memory of his former underlings and what happened to them, triggering him into an explosive rage at the fact that his "possessions" were taken away from him.
    • To be fair, he doesn't treat his underlings as expendable and he's about as humane as could be hoped for as an Artificial Human formed from the evil impulses of an Eldritch Abomination.
    • He later also subverts this somewhat when someone calls him out on his supposed 'desires', causing him to admit that all he really wanted were friends.
    • Envy also falls into a version of this, given that it loves to sadistically harm people, but complains about others not fighting fair on the occasions where they get the better of it. For instance, when Roy Mustang and Riza Hawkeye fail to be impressed with Envy's Shapeshifter Guilt Trip, Envy scolds them for their lack of humanity, because they didn't hesitate before shooting their friends.
    • Pride shows some of this too. He berates Greed for betraying their "family" and then shortly afterward devours his "brother", Gluttony to absorb his powers while Gluttony cries out in agony.
    • The primary antagonist of the 2003 anime version can be seen as an example as well. Despite trying to pass herself off as a Well-Intentioned Extremist, it is pretty obvious that Dante is only motivated by her own selfish desires. She has ruined countless lives for the sake of her own immortality and tries to justify it by saying that humans should accept that life isn't fair. Of course, once her plans backfire in her face, she throws a hissy fit.
      • The anime version of Envy is as bad or worse than its original counterpart. A Beta Test Baddie and textbook case of The Resenter, he'll kill anyone he meets for daring to have it better than he does.
  • Kirino from Ore no Imouto ga Konna ni Kawaii Wake ga Nai! seems to believe that the world revolve around her navel, and that's it's up to others to make it so she gets her way, and that they should be berated about it and thankful to her.
  • Mazinger Z: Why Big Bad Dr. Hell wants to Take Over the World? Because when HE was a child and young man everybody abused HIM and nobody respected HIM or acknowledged HIS genius, and HE considers the whole humanity must pay for it -even though most of the people tormented him when he was a child would be old or dead when the series began- and kneel before HIM. Also, when he attended college, he befriended a Japanese exchange student called Juzo Kabuto (who looooong aafter would create Mazinger-Z) and fell in love with another exchange student named Yumiko. When he found out they were engaged, he convinced himself they pretended to be his friends while planning to backstab him. He genuinely believed EVERYBODY was out to get him (long before they WERE).
  • In Spirited Away, after Chihiro has pried a job out of Yubaba, over relentless and vicious attempts to intimidate her out of asking, Yubaba laments her promise to employ anyone who asked for a job: it makes her have to be so nice all the time, and she really hates that.
    • Also, the bathhouse employees could count. They don't care that a strange spirit has somehow taken up residence in the bathhouse and is demanding all of the food and water. He's getting them gold! And they only start to be careful around him after they realize that he might eat one of them.
  • Unless your name is Mokuba, don't expect Seto Kaiba to show you anything other than cold indifference. Unless Mokuba has been kidnapped, Kaiba has shown he has no problem at all standing back and watching Yugi and company save the world while he mutters insults under his breath.
  • Vegeta from Dragon Ball Z certainly fits, specifically around the Androids/Cell arc. Keep in mind he was technically on the good guys side, so a few guys would find his attitude irritating. Even Bulma, who had a child with Vegeta, found his personality grating, but she had a whole seven years to deal with that later.
  • This is why Death Note's Light Yagami is ultimately a villain. Even if you agree with him that criminals should be exterminated, as far as he's concerned, even Kira supporters are just garbage to be manipulated and discarded when they've outlived their usefulness. Poor Takada.
  • A staple of many One Piece villains. Notable examples include Kuro, Don Krieg, Wapol, and Spandam.
  • Naruto gives the following:
    • The first example we see is Orochimaru, one of the most powerful ninja in the first half of the series. To him, everything is about furthering his own goals and he will sacrifice anything for it. He adopts orphans, manipulates them, experiments on them and eventually has them killed when they're of no more use to him. Anything that he doesn't value is worthless unless it gets in his way, in which case he destroys it. If something goes wrong, you can expect that Orochimaru probably had a hand in it out of pure selfishness and dickery.
    • Subverted by Itachi who pretends to this trope to make his brother stronger, but who sacrificed everything -- his family, his home, his reputation, and eventually his life -- to protect the Leaf and avert the civil war his family's coup would have caused.
    • Madara might be an even bigger case than Orochimaru depending on interpretation. Madara was mad because his clan wanted to stop fighting the Senju clan, then he was mad because HE didn't get to be Hokage, and then he was mad because he felt his clan didn't respect him enough. When he began going blind, he took his brother's eyes, though where or not this was by force is intentionally unclear. Madara is a little more debatable because he seems to honestly believe he was doing the right thing for his clan, but he completely ignores their wishes. While it turns out Tobi was lying when he said he was Madara, the real Madara is apparently behind the Moon's Eye Plan, aka 'Brainwash the world into doing what I want.'
  • Haruhi Suzumiya has this going on. Especially when she drags a senior, and sexually assaults her. And drugs said senior with sake for an amateur movie and mistreats her (It's funnier than it sounds). Let's just ignore the fact that it pretty much is. Eventually she undergoes a little bit of Character Development from Jerkass to Jerk with a Heart of Gold.
  • Mayo Sakaki from Fushigi Yuugi: Eikoden. Miaka was bratty and immature, yeah, but at least she had good intentions; Mayo was a pure, rotten self-centered bitch.
  • Ouran High School Host Club's Tamaki seems to have this attitude, but then goes through major character development it turns out he's pretty much always been The Messiah... while still happily bragging about how awesome he is.
    • Tamaki is very self centered but he's also insanely interested in EVERYONE because they're different from him. That's what makes him closer to The Messiah. While half is interest in other's lives come from how he finds it fascinating, he also does it with rather pure intentions. (Like his love of pleasing ladies comes from his self image of a prince, but a prince wants to make ladies happy...it's rather circular)
  • From the Liar Game, Complete Monster Yokoya only cared about benefitting himself. He doesn't care if his own teammates who allied with him get money or if they go further into debt.
  • Honey Hunt has the protagonists (Yura) famous celebrity parents, Yukari and Takayuki. But especially Yukari who is hardly at home for her daughter and is very selfish. In all of her interviews she lies and says that she and Yura are close and spend much time together as a result of Takayuki being abroad so often, when in reality she is just as cold and distant as Takayuki. Also, immediately after showing up after being away from home for about a half a month, Yukari coldly announces that she and Takayuki are getting divorced before telling Yura that she can go wherever she wants. Also, while Takayuki was having an affair she was having one of her own with Yura's neighbor and crush, Shinsuke. When Yura finds out about the affair Yukari's response is to smile, declare that Shinsuke likes her more than Yura, that she's going to allow Shinsuke to live with her in a mansion she had bought, and that Takayuki had a baby with his mistress so neither he nor Yukari will have time to look after Yura anymore. She then demands that Yura leave the house. It's eventually revealed that she and her husband were only together for the sake of their careers and their images, they didn't love each other. The two of them even agreed on a rule with each other that they would stay married as long as they hide their own adulterous affairs. After she decided to divorce Takayuki because the press found out about his affair, however, it is shown that she has no intentions of taking care of Yura and merely cared about repairing her image in the eyes of the public because they had originally thought she was the "ideal mom". Seriously, poor kid.
  • Ryo and Sae from Peach Girl. Though they both eventually become better people as a result of how their selfish actions come to negatively affect their lives and the lives of others.
  • Hana Mizuki in the manga Papillon.
  • Souma and Sakurako from Sakura Gari. Initially, it seems as if It's All About Me with them, and that they'll do whatever it takes to get what they want even if they hurt/kill others in the process. They get better, somewhat, by the end though.
  • Hibari from Katekyo Hitman Reborn.
  • Sayaka from Princess Princess. It doesn't matter to her if she ends up hurting people in the process or if Tooru doesn't feel that same about her. It's all about her and having Tooru for herself. Thankfully, she gets better.
  • Wolf Guy Wolfen Crest has both Ryuuko and Haguro.
  • Gankutsuou: Although Baron Julian Danglars maintains that he only wants his daughter to be happy and that everything he does is for her sake, he clearly cares more about money and himself rather than his own daughter (or wife for that matter).
  • Lina Inverse in most incarnations of Slayers; while she does take the time to help others (and save the lives of many if necessary), the true reason she often falls into grand adventures in the first place is so she can acquire money among other things, and will manipulate/leave behind her companions for her own sake. Her greed is immense - in one Non-Serial Movie, she destroys an entire restaurant because she loses the sardine they offered her - which she stepped on herself.
    • His reasons have more meaning than Lina's do, but Zelgadis also slips into this at times in regards to changing his body back to normal.
  • Prussia from Axis Powers Hetalia. He calls himself 'Ore-sama' (a narcissoid way of saying 'I' in Japanese). He likes to remind himself how awesome he is, and he tells the others to praise him, and bow down to him. It's also known that he kept diaries since he was formed; all of the entries start with "I am so cool", "I was so cool today", or something along those lines.
  • When May Wong walks into Kaleido Stage in the second season, she's amazed and pissed off that no one but her sees how wonderful and perfect she is and haven't handed her every lead roll over the current star who worked for everything she has. She gets better, but she'll really make you want to jam your thumbs in your eyes for about a dozen episodes.
    • Leon is the same, in a subtler and colder way. He believes his skill makes him so important he demands script changes and special treatment at the drop of a hat. It turns out he even puts his costars out of commission when he decides they are not worthy of being his partner. If he deems them unworthy, there's no point in them ever continuing to perform. And he actually does that to May herself, seriously injuring her shoulder... which is actually the first step to her Character Development and change of attitude. It'll take Leon WAY more time to defrost. But since he's a white haired pretty boy, fangirls aren't half as hard on him as they are on May.
  • Miyu Greer and Alyssa Searrs from My-HiME have a variation of this, in that they believe it's all about them: they believe that no bond could possibly be stronger than the one they share with each other, and as a consequence of this, they have no problem with hurting other people for the sake of their syndicate's Utopia Justifies the Means plans. When they are the ones being wronged, though, they lament the injustice of it all.
    • Nao is also purely motivated by self-interest in both the manga and anime. In the anime, she uses her powers to exact revenge on men for the robbery that killed her father and left her mother comatose, and later, on those who she blames for her losing her eye. In the manga, she mainly goes along with the fight against the Orphans so that she can break rules without being held accountable.
  • Griffith from Berserk did initially seem to care at least a bit about his group of mercenaries, particularly Caska and Guts, and generally treats the other members kindly enough, but eventually, achieving his dream is the only thing he cares about, so much so that he sacrifices the entire Band of the Hawk to a group of demons, in order to become one himself. The first thing he does with his newfound power and body is rape Casca in front of Guts, presumably just to spite him for daring to leave him. Never mind that Guts had fairly good reasons for doing so, Griffith just didn't understand, or if he did, didn't care.
    • Earlier when Guts tried to leave Griffith's service, how did Griffith respond? Did he thank Guts for his hard work and wish him good luck? Nope. Griffith was so incensed that Guts would want to leave him that he tried to kill Guts. Keep in mind that Guts was the closest thing Griffith had to a real friend.
  • Pokémon: Zoroark: Master of Illusions brings us Grings Kodai, who is this trope incarnate. Even those who don't know what a Complete Monster he is know he'll do absolutely anything to get what he wants. And that's the people who believe his Villain with Good Publicity ruse. He outright says this during his Evil Gloating rant that he doesn't give a darn about anyone- as long as he gets what he wants, it's all worth it. Please note that refers to falsely causing a mass panic, Blackmail, kidnapping, and electrocuting a baby in front of its mother.
  • Claw from Kimba the White Lion. The main reason he wants to take over The Kingdom of the White Lions is so that he could do whatever he wants.
  • Soul Eater has Black*Star, who frequently proclaims himself the hero (it's Badass Bookworm Maka), insists up the whole cast/plot relying upon him (long before he had the skill to back up such a claim), and justifies any deviation from this ('allowing' Maka to fight Crona for e.g) as him simply being a 'great' man and warrior. His single-minded attitude recently allowed him his own heroic piece; being the one to rescue Kid from the Book of Eibon. In a different kind of series, he would be the hero.
  • In The World God Only Knows, Keima comes to the conclusion that the MacGuffin Girls he's seeking are not just girls he's met in the past, but specifically those closest to him (a childhood friend and girls in the same class and/or grade level). He goes so far as to suggest that finding these girls is the reason he was chosen as a spirit hunter in the first place. Narcissistic as it sounds, however, events have so far supported his hypothesis.
  • Lelouch from Code Geass suffers this to an extent; rather than himself, however, he tends to place more value on the lives and desires of people he cares about (like his friends, but especially his little sister). Rather infamously, at the end of the first season, he completely abandons La Résistance because his sister is being held hostage, and in his absence they collapse.
    • However, one important point often forgotten (and a point that distinguishes Lelouch from Light Yagami, to whom he's often compared) is that he grows out of it. Late in the second season, he loses everything that matters to him in such a fashion that he's forced to realize exactly how selfish he's been up to that point. This is what leads to him creating the Zero Requiem plan, where he makes himself a Silent Scapegoat in order to bring world peace; the sign that he's truly matured is that his sister turning up alive and well doesn't derail his plan like it did in the first season.
  • The entire human race in The Animatrix short The Second Renaissance. All the machines wanted was peace with the humans. But no, machines are just tools that live to serve them, so the machines make their own society but their economy becomes better then theres. Well the humans can't have the "tools" making them look bad. Oh I know lets go to war with them.
  • Jose Porla, the guildmaster of Phantom Lord from Fairy Tail. He decides that no other guild is allowed to be as strong, or heaven forbid stronger than his, and sees Fairy Tail growing in strength as an insult. He decides they must be destroyed, and goes about it in the most sadistic way possible by attacking three unsuspecting members to goad them into attacking, nearly killing their master to break down their spirits, kidnapping their newest member (which admittedly he was hired to do by said member's father), and then when she is rescued goes to destroy the guild if they don't give her back, knowing full-well that Fairy Tail is pretty much an entire guild of Nakama and will never do it. All of this because of HIS EGO!
  • In Saint Beast, Zeus intends to lead all the angels along the path of righteousness and anyone who is impure is an affront to his ideal world. He usually reconciles this by purging them out of existence.
  • Although it seems doubtful, the Huckebein family in Magical Record Lyrical Nanoha Force also show these symptoms. Every single page in each chapter, they seemed to indicate to readers that they were superior in every way. So far as they dominate the whole story.


Comic Books[edit | hide]

  • In Legion of Super-Heroes, the serial killer Roxxas arrived on planet to kill Legionnaires and spotted another villain, Mekt Ranzz, Lightning Lord. He offered to share the kills. Unbeknownst to him, Mekt had reformed and was there because his brother and sisters were Legionnaires; first he appealed to Roxxas to stop, and then joined the fight against him. When Roxxas downed all his foes, he kicked Mekt and complained that he would have shared.
  • Susanita from Mafalda is made of this trope:
    • When she reads the famous phrase "Do not do unto others as you do not wish they would do unto you", what is her reaction? "What a shame."
    • In another strip, she read a book of Christian prayers and noticed how frequently the expression "mea culpa" was used. She then proceeded to stay up reading it all night trying to find a prayer that allowed her to pass guilt on to other people to no avail.
    • In yet another strip, she is shown reading about grisly murders and crimes on the newspaper and referring to it as "reading about what a good person [she] is" (by comparison).
  • The series 52 deals with the "missing year" of DC comics between the Infinite Crisis and the One Year Later storylines. In this timeframe Superman has lost his powers and is living life as Clark Kent while a new superhero, christened Supernova, has stepped in as the new protector of Metropolis. Lex Luthor, however, is convinced that Superman is Supernova, simply in a new disguise. Why would Superman do this? Why would he create a new identity, give himself new powers and sever all ties with friends and allies? Why go to all this trouble? To toy with Luthor.
    • Once he got his powers back, Superman proceeded call Luthor out about his claims of Superman "holding humans back". Pointing out that while he was gone, Luthor had spent the entire year obsessing over him rather than doing anything useful.

Superman: Where's the cancer cure, Lex?

      • Luthor has always been like this. He smashed a chair over Doomsday's inert body because he didn't kill Superman, gave away his baby daughter to gain control over Brainiac 13 tech and hired someone to frame Bruce Wayne because he cancelled contracts in protest of Luthor's presidency.
  • Cassandra Nova from Grant Morrison's run on X-Men is an extreme example. A psychic parasite who accidentally became Professor Xavier's stillborn-but-not-really twin sister, Cassandra believes that the entire universe is still the womb she shared with Xavier, in which she has to completely destroy him in order to be "born." Therefore every living being she encounters is either not real or a mindless drone Xavier conjured up. This lets her commit psychological torture, wreck an entire interplanetary civilization, and even initiate a genocide with pure sociopathic impunity.
  • This page, everyone mentioned on it and everyone who's contributed to it, belong to Larfleeze.
  • Doctor Doom, the man even goes as far as to rename the capital of Latveria after himself. He also thinks everyone is inferior to him.
  • The original Reverse-Flash Eobard Thawne. He cares for nothing but himself and irrationally blames Barry Allen for everything wrong in his life.
  • The graphic novel Asterios Polyp does an interesting treatment of this: Asterios is a Jerk with a Heart of Gold who hogs the spotlight and flashbacks to the days when he was married showed that his wife certainly felt that he smothered her at times by having to be the center of attention and make everything about his issues, but he's not quite this. He does have the heart of gold after all, and throughout the course of the story he learns to be better. Obnoxious and unlikable Jerkass theater director Willy, on the other hand, who is sometimes presented as being Not So Different and who shamelessly attempts to seduce Asterios' wife really is this, and will use, abuse, and then discard people and projects according to his whims.
  • Darkseid has a tremendous ego even for a God of Evil. His entire goal is to make everyone and everything an extension of himself. His vision of the future is to essentially turn all creation into an everlasting monument to himself.


Film[edit | hide]

Magneto: Mystique has discovered plans of a base that Stryker's been operating out of for decades. Only we don't know where it is. We thought one of you might.
Wolverine: The professor already tried [to look for hints about Stryker in my mind].
Magneto (sighs): Once again, you think it's all about you.

    • It's also a callback to the first movie, when everyone is certain that Magneto is trying to kidnap Wolverine, only to discover that he's actually after Rogue

Wolverine: What do you want with me?
Magneto: You? My dear boy, whoever said anything about wanting you? *glance towards Rogue, cue Oh Crap expression from her and Wolverine*

  • Waldo Lydecker of Laura is so full of himself, even when he flashes back to Laura's old life, it's through the filter of how great he is.
  • In Antz, General Mandible justifies sending soldiers loyal to the Queen on a suicide mission against a peaceful termite colony just to get them out of the way, assassinating said Queen, and flooding the ant colony to kill off the "weak" workers by claiming it's "for the good of the colony". Near the end, his own second-in-command Cutter has had enough of Mandible's murderous ways and sides with the heroes, saying it's "for the good of the colony". Mandible snaps and screams "I am the colony!", revealing it was all about his satisfying his own ego.
  • Citizen Kane: Kane’s philosophy of life is to be loved in his own terms. Lampshaded spectacularly:

Kane: [pleading] Don't go, Susan. You mustn't go. You can't do this to me.
Susan: I see. So it's you who this is being done to. It's not me at all. Not how I feel. Not what it means to me. [laughs] I can't do this to you? [odd smile] Oh, yes I can.

  • The novelization of Star Wars Revenge of the Sith gives Count Dooku this characterization. He views all beings in two categories, assets who can be of use to him, and threats, who is everyone who is not an asset.


Literature[edit | hide]

  • In Harry Potter, Voldemort complains that his Death Eaters lack loyalty to him, but he has none to them, making Draco try to assassinate Dumbledore despite because of the pain his danger causes his parents, and murdering Snape for power.
    • Let's not forget that he's a sociopathic dictator and doesn't care about any of his Death Eaters.
    • There's also a little character named Lockhart who had...a bit of an ego. His idea of a Defense Against the Dark Arts test contained only questions like "What is Gilderoy Lockhart's favorite color?" and "When is Gilderoy Lockhart's birthday, and what would his ideal gift be?"
    • Also, Dudley, Petunia, Marge, and Vernon Dursley. Of the four, Dudley is the only one who becomes less self-centered by the series end.
    • Dolores Umbridge would certainly count.
    • Barty Crouch, Jr. boasts that he and he alone was faithful to Voldemort. Apparently Bellatrix, who was proclaiming her loyalty to Voldemort while Crouch, Jr. was begging innocence, doesn't exist in his little world. Crouch, Jr. also seems to take for granted his mother and Winky's pity for him.
  • In Dan Abnett's Eisenhorn novel Malleus, Cherubael sets up an elaborate plan to get Eisenhorn to free him. It involves the death of several innocents, including some that Eisenhorn has to kill in self-defense. When Eisenhorn reimprisons him, Cherubael laments the gross injustice of it.
  • In CS Lewis's The Great Divorce, a damned soul manages to convince himself that he has made great sacrifices for his wife, because he once let her use the last stamp to mail a letter when he wanted to mail a letter, too.

Jadis: I was the queen. They were all my people. What else were they there for but to do my will? ... You must learn, child, that what would be wrong for you or for any of the common people is not wrong in a great queen such as I. The weight of the world is on our shoulders. We must be freed from all rules. Ours is a high and lonely destiny."

    • Uncle Andrew most certainly would count as well. He makes his first appearance by tricking Polly into being teleported to another world which, by his own admittance, he knows absolutely nothing about, and then starts guilting Diggory into going there as well. At one point, he launches into an explanation of his experiments and is annoyed when Diggory shows concern first that Andrew didn't obey his godmother's wishes and destroy the magic powder and then over the guinea pigs used for the initial experiments (which Uncle Andrew said exploded like "little bombs"). In fact, he even says that it was fine that he killed a number of helpless animals, because "that was what they were for!" When Diggory continues to ask about where Polly went, Uncle Andrew replies "How you go on about that! As if it mattered!" When Diggory asks why Andrew didn't just send himself to this other world to see what it was like, he outright states that he doesn't want to put himself in danger. And when Diggory is afraid to send himself to an unknown place, Uncle Andrew reminds him that Polly could be starving or drowning or being killed by wild animals. By this point, Diggory wishes he were tall enough to punch his uncle. Later, an explicate parallel is drawn between Andrew and Jadis. Oh, and when they're all in Narnia, all Uncle Andrew thinks about is his own safety (willing to abandon his own nephew, Polly and a cabbie to get home) and how he can profit from the place. When Diggory asks if Narnia might hold something that would cure his mother, Andrew rudely replies that it's not a pharmacy.
  • The father of the Moomin family is one of these. It is most evident in the two books where he's a reasonably main character (The Exploits of Moominpappa and Moominpappa at sea), but it turns up in the other books as well.
  • Skulduggery Pleasant, Feltcher Renn, albeit one of the more pleasant and likeable examples once Character Development takes hold. The fact that he's The Last Living Teleporter means that the plot of the third book is more or less dependent on him, and also that every major power in the magical world desperately wants him to work for them. This feeds his ego pretty strongly, but it's toned down in his later appearances.
    • It's implied most Teleporters are like this, probably because the advanced techniques of Teleporting are only possible if a Teleporter accepts the premise that their powers don't move them through space, but they stand still and their powers allow them to move the world, in essence, the Universe revolves around them.
      • Fletcher has no problem with this concept.
  • In Sandy Mitchell's Ciaphas Cain novel The Traitor's Hand, a daemon kills a trooper in front of Cain and talks of how she will transform the planet into a warp gate to allow daemons to run wild. When, with the help of Jurgen's "blank" abilities, Cain goes to kill her, she objects: "It's not fair!"
    • The villain of Duty Calls turns out to be like this. He actually complains that, in the face of a tyranid attack, when he shot some civilians for trying to get their children onto his escape vessel, the others "got quite abusive". Cain observes that this must have been distressing for him, and he appreciates the sympathy.
  • In Dan Abnett's Gaunt's Ghosts novel First Only, Flense attacks Gaunt for killing his father, but his complaints are that he, personally, lost his estate and family name, and had to rise up in the world like any common trooper.
  • In Graham McNeill's Warhammer 40,000 Ultramarines novel Nightbringer, Taloun complains to the Space Marine Uriel that he has lost thousands of man-hours of production owing to bombs. Uriel wonders how many men he had lost, and whether he cared.
    • This is 40k. Those men only mattered to the Imperium inasmuch as they work for its defense; the loss of a million men is considered a good trade if it will keep a manufacturing planet for one more day. The loss of 20 men at one factory is irrelevant next to the loss of the thousands of man-hours of munitions they would have built.
  • Objectivist hero Richard Rahl becomes like this about mid-way through the series, all while apparently wearing a massive set of irony blinders.
  • In Graham McNeill's Warhammer 40,000 Horus Heresy novel Fulgrim, Braxton is enraged that the primarch keeps him waiting, because keeping people waiting is what he does to other people, to demonstrate his superior status.
  • This is basically Bella Swan's mindset. Something to effect of justified since everything really does revolve around her. It's only not all about her when it's about her and Edward together. And Edward acts just the same.
    • A particularly bad example is in Breaking Dawn. Throughout the series, Bella is terrified of vampires who drink human blood and thinks that the Cullens are great because they don't. When human-killing vampires show up to do favors for her though, she's just peachy with them. (Yes, there's one scene where she's mildly bothered that her guests are committing murder, but that's it).
  • The Big Bad of Mercedes Lackey's Jinx High understands the magical law of karma ... specifically she understands that when others do wrong, it leaves them open for her to harm them. The idea that she might be subject to this same law doesn't even occur to her.
    • To be fair, the villainess knows that she has an escape clause for that problem—her body-switching magic has repeatedly allowed her to let karmic consequences land on someone else's head while she escapes scot-free. One of the saddest things about the series coming to an unplanned and abrupt halt after Jinx High is that her ultimate escape at the end and its consequences (notably, that Diana Tregarde has entirely unknown to her actually killed an innocent person in the villainess' stead) are never, ever addressed.
  • Warrior Cats: Hawkfrost, since it seems his main motivation in trying to rule the forest, is the fact that he believes that he, and only he, is capable of leading the Clans properly, also how he constantly addresses the crowd at Gatherings, even though he has no right to.
  • In Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility, Marianne Dashwood is deeply self-absorbed, considering her feelings (whether positive or negative) absolutely irrepressible and in the process disregarding common politeness and the feelings of others; when circumstances force Elinor to confess that she too has been unhappy, Marianne breaks down in Tears of Remorse, forcing Elinor to comfort her again, and continues to wallow in her own unhappiness - with added guilt, now - rather than provide emotional support for Elinor. It takes near-death to smarten her up. Granted, she's a teenager, but it's a major contrast with Elinor, who's 19 and displays more responsibility and consideration for others than many people much older than her.
  • Peter S. Beagle's The Last Unicorn. King Haggard, in a unnerving variation of this trope.
    • Unicorns as well, although not to quite such a disturbing degree as Haggard. They're explicitly stated to be sort of vain, because they're incredibly beautiful, extremely magical, and fully aware of both those facts.
  • In Terry Pratchett's Making Money, Pucci Lavish. It would be inaccurate to say that she confesses at the climax -- "confessing" implies admitting to doing wrong. She's considerably closer to bragging.
    • Tiffany Aching of The Wee Free Men is a heroic example. The Fair Folk kidnapped her obnoxious baby brother and are invading her country, and now It's Personal. It's hinted that "turning selfishness into a weapon" like this is a major source of power for witches.
  • The Gentleman with the thistle-down hair in Susanna Clarke's Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell. He is convinced he is a great friend of Stephan Black despite his complete obliviousness to Black's feelings, and as a Fisher King, he has turned his land into a sad and dismal place, a derelict manor on a windswept moor surrounded by a dark leafless wood, with the remains of ancient battles rotting outside. The fairy inhabitants spend their time in endless balls, they have "idled away their days in pointless pleasures and in celebrations of past cruelties." Fittingly enough, he ends up dying at Stephan Black's hands, for what he thought was a favor.
  • In Honor Harrington, a subordinate muses on Aristocrats Are Evil poster-boy Pavel Young as she betrays him:

No one else was quite real to Pavel Young. That was especially true for women, but it applied to everyone else around him, as well. He lived in a universe of cardboard cutouts, of human-shaped things provided solely for his use. He had no sense of them as people who might resent him -- or, indeed, who had any right to resent him -- and he was too busy doing things to them to even consider what they might do to him if they got the chance.

Arthur: I think we have different value systems.
Ford: Mine's better.

    • And don't forget Zaphod.

Trillian: Can we leave your ego out of this? This is important.
Zaphod: Hey, if there's anything more important than my ego around here, I want it caught and shot now.

      • To put a finer point on it: One book introduces a torture device called the Total Perspective Vortex, which drives the victim insane by showing them just how tiny and insignificant they are compared to the rest of existence. Zaphod walks away from it just fine because, as he sees it, what it showed him was that the universe really does revolve around him. On the other hand, at the moment he was in a miniature Universe designed to completely envelop him, so the fully-functional Vortex did work perfectly-in the worst way imaginable.
  • The titular character in Oscar Wilde's short story "The Remarkable Rocket."

"What right have you to be happy? You should be thinking about others. In fact, you should be thinking about me. I am always thinking about myself, and I expect everybody else to do the same. That is what is called sympathy. It is a beautiful virtue, and I possess it in a high degree."

  • Emperor Ublaz Mad Eyes is under the impression that it's perfectly reasonable to slaughter dozens of innocents to get himself a pink pearl crown.
  • Katniss's prep team in The Hunger Games. Who comment on what they were doing when they saw someone die in the games.
    • In Catching Fire, they wail over her. Though when Cinna deals with them, they at least pull out when they start crying again.
  • In Aaron Allston's Galatea in 2-D, Kevin. Out to ruin Donna and Roger's lives out of envy. Laughs at the way his first discovery of Art Initiates Life killed a bunch of painted men. Taunts his Mook Red with the possibility of letting his beloved Penny die and makes him beg, repeatedly, before he saves her. Instead of just killing his opponents, locks them up somewhere with monsters that will kill them if they close their eyes—preventing Roger from using his powers but ensuring they will die of sleep deprivation. Takes advantage of a truce flag to try to kill Roger. Sees a random piece of good art, checks the name so that he knows who to ruin. And when the heroes have attacked him all out, he demands that Roger explain something he did—Roger owes him it, for this attack.
  • In Pride and Prejudice, Mrs. Bennet and Lydia Bennet suffer from this; while Mrs. Bennet is perceptive enough to note that without husbands her daughters face a lifetime of ruin upon the death of their father, her primary concern seems mainly to be self-involved whining about how this will affect her. Similarly, her favourite daughter Lydia (who takes after her mother in many ways), on running away with Wickham, writes a giggly letter expressing how much fun she's having and what a laugh it'll be to be married to Wickham without any concern for the fact that she might be putting her family's fortunes at risk through her actions. Mr Bennet suffers from this too: his failure to keep his wife and younger daughters' behaviour in check puts Lizzy and Jane's romantic prospects in jeopardy, and creates a bit of a monster in Lydia. Also, he fails to even try to marry Mary off to Mr Collins, even though she is plainly suited to him (lampshaded in the 90s BBC adaptation and recent film), and would secure his wife's future.
  • Daisy, Tom, and Jordan from The Great Gatsby, to the point where Daisy accidentally kills Tom's mistress and Tom's solution is to let Daisy's Love Martyr Gatsby take the fall, manipulate his mistress' husband into killing Gatsby, and leave all this unpleasantness behind them. Jordan would have viewed the spoilered bits as light entertainment.
    • Heck, this trope is pretty much the entire theme of The Great Gatsby. During Gatsby's funeral, Nick is disgusted to see that only one person shows up. Keep in mind that Gatsby spent a lot of money throwing lavish parties, which a lot of people attended and enjoyed, yet only one cared enough to show up. A particularly nasty bit had one of Gatsby's regular guests call up the mansion. Upon hearing about the funeral and being asked if he would attend, the guest casually states that he might, but he wasn't even aware that Gatsby had died and just wanted to ask if he could get a pair of shoes that he'd left over there.
  • In the Novelization of Revenge of the Sith, part of the reason Anakin killed his wife was because he refused to see her actions, and Obi-Wan stowing away in her ship, as anything but an attack on him. Waking up in the suit, he realizes that he was thinking with this trope. But it's far too late to turn back; even he knows he's crossed the Moral Event Horizon.

You killed her because, finally, when you could have saved her, when you could have gone away with her, when you could have been thinking about her, you were thinking about yourself...
It is in this blazing moment that you finally understand the trap of The Dark Side, the final cruelty of the Sith --
Because now your self is all you will ever have.

  • Heather Babcock from Agatha Christie's The Mirror Crack'd is a non-villainous example of this. She isn't mean, and actually goes out of her way to do nice things for other people, like rescuing Miss Marple after a nasty fall or taking in a homeless family. However, she is incapable of recognizing that her actions affect other people or that what something means to her might not be the same for other people involved. The primary example of this was that when she got sick, she didn't recognize that the doctor's instructions to "Stay in bed and don't go out to meet people" might not have been just for her benefit...
    • In And Then There Were None, Anthony Marston embodies this trope, seeing a hit-and-run accident which caused the death of two young children merely in the light of losing his driver's license.
  • Torak. It's pointed out at least once that his brutal, almost sadistic actions make perfect sense if one accepts his premise that he's the sole reason the universe exists. He originally stole the Orb of Aldur because it was inconceivable that such a powerful magical gemstone could belong to anyone but him. Then he killed half of mankind in a catastrophic seismic upheaval with said Orb when the forces of literally everyone else came to take it back. A lot of bad things can happen when the one espousing this viewpoint is a God of Evil.
  • Sisterhood series by Fern Michaels: A number of villains have shades of this. In particular, Rosemary Hershey from the book Sweet Revenge is all about this trope! She doesn't want to share with anyone, she hires ugly people just to make herself look beautiful, and when things go wrong (and they do) she blames Isabelle Flanders and just about everyone except herself. She caused the deaths of three people to ruin Isabelle and take everything Isabelle held dear, including her fiance Bobby Harcourt. She displayed no remorse for those deaths. However, it turns out later that she blocked out a number of details related to the deaths, and once she remembers them, they stay in her mind, causing her to lose sleep and wreck up her precious ego and sanity. When Bobby makes moves to divorce her (another blow to her), at one point she calls him demanding to know why he didn't turn on her security system on his way out of her house. Bobby points out "Why is it always about you and what you want?"
  • The Phantom of the Opera: Arguably, everyone in the original book by Gaston Leroux, except Christine, the Persian and Madam Valerious:
    • Raoul: After Christine murmurs: “Poor Erik!”

At first, he thought he must be mistaken. To begin with, he was persuaded that, if any one was to be pitied, it was he, Raoul. It would have been quite natural if she had said, "Poor Raoul," after what had happened between them. But, shaking her head, she repeated: "Poor Erik!" What had this Erik to do with Christine's sighs and why was she pitying Erik when Raoul was so unhappy?

    • Erik, After his Love Redeems scene, meets the Daroga, who asks him (repeatedly) about the murder of Count Philippe:

"Daroga, don't talk to me ... about Count Philippe ... ""I have not come here ... to talk about Count Philippe ... but to tell you that ... I am going ... to die..."

    • Mme. Giry:

"Mme. Giry. You know me well enough, sir; I'm the mother of little Giry, little Meg, what!"
This was said in so rough and solemn a tone that, for a moment, M. Richard was impressed. He looked at Mme. Giry, in her faded shawl, her worn shoes, her old taffeta dress and dingy bonnet. It was quite evident from the manager's attitude, that he either did not know or could not remember having met Mme. Giry, nor even little Giry, nor even "little Meg!" But Mme. Giry's pride was so great that the celebrated box-keeper imagined that everybody knew her

    • Moncharmin: Excerpt from the (exceptionally long) "Memories of a Manager":

"A grievous accident spoiled the little party which MM. Debienne and Poligny gave to celebrate their retirement. I was in the manager's office, when Mercier, the acting-manager, suddenly came darting in. He seemed half mad and told me that the body of a scene-shifter had been found hanging in the third cellar under the stage, between a farm-house and a scene from the Roi de Lahore. I shouted: " 'Come and cut him down!'

  • In Teresa Frohock's Miserere an Autumn Tale, Catarina interprets everything Lucian does as a slight to her, regarding it as treachery for him to escape after she had tortured him and had him crippled for life.
  • In John Hemry's A Just Determination, Sinclair's first impression of Garcia is this, but while the ship is underway, Garcia is furious while investigating a death, and Sinclair deduces that it could not reflect on him personally so he must be care about something besides himself.

Live Action TV[edit | hide]

  • Two and A Half Men: This arguably applies to everyone, but especially Evelyn, the two brothers mother. She frequently reacts to news that affects anyone except her with "Do you have any idea what you put me through?!"
  • The Cat from Red Dwarf actually makes a logical argument that the world revolves around him. It finishes with The most exciting things that have ever happened to me, have been whenever I was in the room!
    • Although it's considered unfair to call the Cat vain as he isn't human, the entire Cat race supposedly displayed vain and self centred attitudes.
  • Phoebe in Charmed particularly in Season 5.
  • In the Doctor Who episode "Boom Town," Margaret Blaine Slitheen tells the Doctor that, on one occasion, she could have murdered someone to benefit herself, but didn't. The Doctor points out that there are a lot more people that she has murdered.
    • River Song enters a brief state of this in Series Six. She states that being forced to kill a man who, up until then, she'd only met twice (the first time of which she didn't remember, as she was an infant) would cause her to suffer more than the rest of the entire universe when reality and time itself collapsed. The Doctor snaps her out of it.
  • One episode of Law and Order: Criminal Intent had this as the Villain Of The Week's weakness. He pretty much betrays everyone who helps him but expects complete loyalty from his "allies". To this end they simply make him think his latest accomplice is planning to betray him, causing said accomplice to realise how dangerous he is and turn to the police for help.
  • In the Heroes Volume 3: Villains finale, Sylar personifies this trope. He says that Angela is a monster because she was willing to kill her husband, blow up New York, and worst of all, hurt him by making him think he had a family.
    • Possibly justified in that by making him think he had a family, she was really just using his mommy issues to trigger his season-one persona of rampaging powers-Darwinist lunatic. Since the bomb didn't go off and her other crime involved just one (attempted) murder (which even that was technically to protect Nathan Petrelli, since the dad did try to off Nathan Petrelli, and was also responsible for crippling Nathan's ex-wife Heidi), this could technically be the worst of her crimes as it culminated in a lot of deaths. Still, I don't think the writers deserve the credit that statement implies: logic in a season three script.
  • Although not a villain- Sea Change doesn't really have any villains- Jules, the daughter of the mayor, pretty much personifies this trope. She's a selfish bitch to the point of everyone being disgusted, like the bit in "Balls and Friggin' Good Luck", where everyone's getting ready for the ferry, and she whines, "This is so awful! How could Jerome do this to me?" when he was the one who committed suicide, and she's acting like she's the one who is most affected, without considering his family, which is worse when you consider the next scene, which is the inquest, and Jerome's mother and almost everyone else is bawling their eyes out.
    • Although it was subverted later when her mother is talking to her father about how Jerome might have deliberately crashed, and she starts talking about how she sometimes thinks about suicide, and what she wants at her funeral, until her mother snaps and says, "Julie Ann Jelly, I'm sorry that Jerome Hall's death has temporarily taken attention away from yourself! Now would you please stop grandstanding!" So good.
  • Ally McBeal. Actually treated sympathetically by the show; when asked why her problems are so much more important than everyone else's, she responds "because they're mine" while angsty music plays in the background.
  • Sieg, the White Prince Imagin from Kamen Rider Den-O starts off extremely arrogant, referring to everyone around him as servants; in fact, his two catchphrases are "Advent; the one who stands above all" and "The world revolves for my sake". Once he gets owned by Hana (verbally and physically), he mellows out and starts acting more benevolent, but still does it in arrogant fashion.
  • Tendou Souji of Kamen Rider Kabuto makes a play at this, particularly with two lines of his grandmother's wisdom. One is his Catch Phrase: "Walking the Way of Heaven, I am the man who rules over all." The other may be more of a lampshading: "The world revolves around you. ... It's fun to think like that."
  • Sheldon from The Big Bang Theory takes "the world revolves around me" as an axiom.

Leonard: Sheldon, not everything is about you.
Sheldon: <Pause> I don't follow you.

  • Cordelia, in the first season Buffy episode, Out of Mind, Out of Sight, after noticing that all of the victims have a connection to her:

Cordelia: This is all about me! Me, me, me!
Xander: Wow! For once she's right!

    • This is Cordelia's whole schtick until she starts getting Character Development in the second season, whether she's complaining about the trauma of hitting a cyclist with her car (and the cyclist wanting it to be all about their leg), shushing her companion as a motormouth for almost getting a word in edgewise, or (as above) realizing that the Monster of the Week is targeting her. (All this is even funnier when considering what happens to her on the spinoff.)
  • In Spellbinder, Spellbinder Ashka sabotages Regent Correon's suit to get him exiled after he loses the Wizard Duel. Then she destroys a book of technological secrets that would've drawn her world out of prolonged stagnation and barbarism so as not to jeopardise her position in power. Then she tricks Paul's father to build her a new powersuit and as a token of gratitude she locks his entire family in an electrified cage and leaves them there to die. In the sequel she steals a valuable mask that is also an interface of a super-computer that governs a whole country, thus leaving it defenceless against an invading horde of barbarians.
  • Jane in Coupling. When we see her under "Captain Subtext" mode, all of her dialogue is translated as "Let's all talk about me! Me... Me... Me!"
  • Victorious: Trina has a vain and narcissistic ego.

Trina: So she said "You think you're better than everyone else" and I said "Well, yeah, pretty much."

    • While not to the same extent as her sister, Tori can be pretty selfish as well.
  • Big Time Rush: James Diamond is essentially a male version of Trina. Gustavo can also be like this as well, considering how greatly he thinks about his music and never thinks he needs relaxing.
  • In Ugly Betty, Betty briefly dates a musician who has this attitude. When he begins to show off his new song for her on a date, she has a trippy hallucination of him singing a song consisting of nothing but "Me me me me me!" Hilariously, the actually chorus of the song turns out to be "The only one I can depend on...is me."
  • In Supernatural Lucifer suffers from this, with several characters pointing out that his motivation is basically the cosmic equivalent of a child throwing a tantrum for not getting his way.
  • Tracy and Jenna on 30 Rock. Liz has her moments of this too. And Jack. And... okay, basically everyone not named "Kenneth".
  • Noah's Arc: Noah seems to fall into this regarding relationships, and occassionally catches himself (or is called out on) not really giving as much focus to his friends' relationship issues while they are expected to drop whatever they are doing to tend to his. Its highlighted at the end of one episode where Ricky just went through a breakup and is clearly depressed, and Noah calls him to complain about the "emergency" of Wade wanting to go house hunting with him.
  • House has been called this, for many, many reasons.
  • London Tipton from The Suite Life On Deck.
  • Radiguet from Choujin Sentai Jetman. He wants to take everything for himself, even from fellow elites. Or boss (be it Juza or Tranza, if it means an Enemy Mine with the Jetman, he'll do it to reclaim his superiority)
    • From Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger, we have Basco Ta Jolokia. He will betray everyone and do anything to get what he wants. Yes, that include threatening to kill a wounded child which he was very willing to do. In fact, his catchphrase is: To gain something, you must throw something else. Note: Said 'something else' can be anything that didn't belong to him in the first place.
  • Shows up all the time on Survivor, especially with jury members in the final episode: many reflect on their time in the game and conclude that they were Too Cool to Live, and their questions for the Final Two/Three revolve around getting the finalists to suck up to them.
    • Naonka from the Nicaragua season is one of the more extreme examples. Immediately after winning a challenge, she announces her intention to quit the game. After a few minutes on this subject, the host gets back to business and gives the winning team a choice: one member can give up reward (which includes food) to get food and shelter for the tribe. Naonka, even though she'll be fed that night at the Loser Lodge if once she quits, makes no move to give up the reward and talks to the Confession Cam about how she doesn't care, she wants food now. She spends the rest of the episode talking about how awesome she is (even though she's quitting because the experience is too hard) and how she knows she would've won if she stayed (not a chance; she was being carried to the end because she'd be easy to win against).
  • Particularly notable examples in Glee are Rachel Berry (accuses Mr Schue of giving other students solos purely to punish her; sends a rival to a crackhouse instead of an audition to avoid losing her top spot in the club), Finn (lies to Rachel to get her back into glee so he can get a music scholarship; yells at Kurt in front of the whole club for not telling him about Kurt's father's heart attack before anyone else, less than 24 hours after it happened), and Sue Sylvester (...pretty much everything she says and does, really).
    • Mr. Schue gets accused of this when he focuses too much on his own personal musical preferences and not what is best for the students. He did start the Glee club partly to relive his glory days and will occasionally slip into behaving like it is all about him. Having to deal with Sue and Rachel usually knocks him out of it.
  • Mitchell of Being Human (UK) gets regularly called out on this. He focuses on how miserable and guilty he feels and forgets all the people he killed and the suffering of their families. It might actually be a survival trait for vampires as those who are too emphatic would be prone to suicide or exposing the Masquerade.
    • It is a vampire trait, if they stop drinking blood their empathy comes back. Remembering all the evil you've done is one of the hardest things about staying clean.
  • On The Big C, Rebecca has a rather selfish reaction to Cathy revealing that she has cancer:

Rebecca: You will be my first real friend with cancer. I will be forever changed.
Cathy: (dryly) Hopefully for the better.

  • Lex Luthor goes this way as Smallville progresses, allowing his obsessions to dominate his life, and refusing to accept the blame for any of the disasters he's caused. He blames his father, Clark, Lana, and anyone else he can, has dozens of skeletons in his closet, but takes anyone else keeping a secret as a personal betrayal, and tries to control the lives of everyone around him, never understanding why they might have a problem with that.
  • Walt, from Breaking Bad, says this word-for-word in S4E6, Cornered.
    • Walt in general had this problem in season six, because his cancer's gone into remission and mobsters are threatening to kill him. It's an unusual contrast to earlier seasons Walt when he was all about doing crazy shit to provide for his family before he died.
  • Royal Brat and obsessive collector Kivas Fajo in the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "The Most Toys". In order to expand his collection, he abducts and fakes the death of a Federation officer (specifically, Data), then attempts to force Data to comply with his whims by threatening to murder his own subordinates, at one point killing his assistant of fourteen years, then dismissing her death with "there's always another Varria". Had O'Brien been five seconds slower with the transporter, Data would have inflicted an agonising Ironic Death on him with the same model of disruptor he'd used on Varria. Nobody in or out of universe would have put much effort into mourning him.
  • Kwame in Tinsel. He is totally shocked that Angela would break into his office and steal back her medical files - the same medical files that he's been blackmailing her with and that he stole from her doctor's office in the first place!
  • Blair Waldorf on Gossip Girl became this in season five which is one of the reasons why she went from fan favorite to a character most people dislike.
  • Eunice Higgins from The Carol Burnett Show and its spinoff, Mama's Family always had to be the center of attention, partly due to being The Unfavorite in Mama's eyes. She even tried to upstage her own brother at his wedding. Ultimately, she moved to Florida the day before her son, Bubba, was supposed to be released from juvenile hall without telling him, and forcing him to live with Mama.
  • This is Rick’s default state on The Young Ones. To best illustrate, his reaction to finding out in the series finale that both his parents suddenly and mysteriously died? "The selfish BASTARDS! I was going to spend the whole summer with them!"


Music[edit | hide]

  • The Bohemian Rhapsody is a condemned murderer's self-pity. Never once do we hear the narrator express remorse for the murder; he's only sorry he got in trouble for it.
  • The Decemberists' "The Rake's Song": the Rake murdered his entire family just because he was bored with raising children:

"And that's how I came, your humble narrator,
To be living so easy and free,
I 'spect that you think that I should be haunted,
But it never really bothers me."

    • Oh come on, you're not giving him enough credit. He wasn't bored - he was actively horrified that he'd ever allowed himself to be in a position that hampers his rakish ways.
  • The Sisters of Mercy song I Was Wrong (and really most of their Vision Thing album) veers off in this direction: "Pain looks great on other men, that's what they're for."
  • Marshall Mathers aka Eminem put out a wonderful Ear Worm called "Without Me"

Now this looks like a job for me so everybody just follow me
cuz we need a little controversy,
cuz it feels so empty without me

  • Obscure New Zealand jazz group Hot Club Sandwich have a song all about this, entitled 'Let's Talk About Me'

Let's talk about me (Let's talk about me)
I'm much more interesting than you
Let's talk about me (Let's talk about me)
My life is fabulous, it's true
Let's talk about me (Let's talk about me)
It's something that we all should do, come on
That's enough about me, let's talk about you
What do you think about ME?

  • The Weird Al song "Why Does This Always Happen to Me?" shows the narrator getting increasingly sociopathic, from getting mad that the news interrupted The Simpsons to report a horrific earthquake, to lamenting the fact that a friend who owed him five bucks just got killed in a car accident and he'll never see the money again, to bending the tip of his really nice knife when he stabbed his boss in the face.
  • Doctor Steel's song, "Build the Robots".

One fine day when I've got my army made
My flying saucers and toys invade
Every city and every town
And then I'll plaster my face up all over the place
See, I'm gonna win the human race
See, I'm gonna make the world a better place... <Beat>
For me.

  • Austrian pop star Falco's song "Egoist".


Newspaper Comics[edit | hide]

  • All three main characters in Candorville do this from time to time—Susan and Lemont because their problems are so great, Clyde because he's just self-centered. None of them have anything on Roxanne, though—she has never shown concern for any individual human being other than herself and her son with Lemont, and the latter is more a means of guilt-tripping Lemont than someone she really cares about.
  • Calvin, taking it to extreme levels in his naivete. It comes up all the time, but perhaps the clearest example was when he used advanced cardboard box technology to create multiple identical copies of himself and was amazed and outraged when instead of doing all his work for him they all did whatever they damn well pleased and got him into trouble repeatedly. He has also remarked that the world owes him everything for the simple fact that he made it a better place by being born, and that he's tired of everyone being so selfish and only thinking about themselves when they should focus on him.
    • What may set some kind of a record is when two time-travelling versions of Calvin decide to gang up on the Calvin between themselves in time, blaming him for being lazy and not doing the homework assignment neither of them is going to do either because they want to get it by time travel. They threaten to beat him up to make him do it until he points out they're going to suffer from it too because they're him. In other words, it's not even just all about me at the expense of everyone else, it's all about me at this moment at the expense of me at other times.
    • To his defense, he's six, which would explain his lack of perception in such issues.
  • Andy Capp is about as bad in this respect, as if it isn't bad enough he leeches off everyone else. There's a reason why his name sounds like "handicap".
  • Garfield. Just Garfield.

Jon: Do you have ANY idea what I have to put up with because of you!?
Garfield: *thinks* No, I've never thought of that before.

  • Lucy van Pelt from Peanuts, who like Calvin has the excuse that she's a child. She's nothing but cruel to the other kids, yet expect them to treat her like a queen at all times. If she does something wrong, than it's Never My Fault. If there's a grievance against her, either real or perceived and usually perceived, she responds with a Megaton Punch.
    • At one point, studying history, Sally Brown is astonished to learn how many people existed before she was born. She feels sorry for them, because it can't have been much fun without her in the world. When Charlie Brown comes back from being lost in the woods, her reaction is "I suppose you'll want your room back?"
  • J.J. of Doonesbury - to the point where she somehow made the funeral of Widow Doonesbury (Mike's mother and her former mother-in-law) all about her forgiving Mrs. Doonesbury for the mean things she said about her over the years. For bonus points, she says this in front of Alex, her daughter (and Mrs. Doonesbury's granddaughter).


Professional Wrestling[edit | hide]

  • In the WWE, this is Batista's new gimmick in that EVERYTHING has to be about him. His entrance? Every other light in the arena going off and a single spotlight being focused on him as he is walks to the ring. Is he not in the World Championship match going on? He will run in and beat the crap out of both participants for daring to not have him in the match. If he cuts a promo, he will say this line at least twice.
  • In TNA, Dixie Carter's decision to fire Abyss. She was shown bullying General Manager Eric Bischoff into enforcing her wishes, which is admittedly her right as his superior. The problem here is that she wanted to fire Abyss not because he has been randomly attacking and even attempting to kill high-profile wrestlers (such as his assault on then-TNA Champion Rob Van Dam, forcing Van Dam to vacate the title), but because Abyss took Dixie hostage in front of the entire TNA "Impact Zone" (what TNA calls its in-studio fan base) and reduced her to a sniveling wreck on national television. She even orders it to be public just to humiliate Abyss just as he did her. Keep in mind that she's already been put into harm's way before (via Fortune, which led to her husband Serge being assaulted in an attempt to come to her rescue) and she didn't bother to at least suspend them. Abyss's actions aside, this makes Dixie comes across as caring more about herself and how she appears than the well-being of her employees. When she talked to RVD about his match, the discussion was pretty much "I want you to beat him for what he did to me! ...Oh, and to you, too!"
    • Subverted in that Hulk Hogan and Eric Bischoff were actually working Dixie; they were the ones that had Abyss become an Ax Crazy monster, carve up Rob Van Dam, warn maniacally about the coming of a force called "They"/"Them" that was telling him to do everything, and finally grab Dixie in order to frighten her into signing a contract Bischoff presented and said was for the firing of Abyss following Bound for Glory…but was actually for them to take over the company. Ironically, this trope basically built the entire motivation behind not just Hogan and Bischoff, but everybody involved in their Massive Multiplayer Scam.
  • Often a cause for a Face Heel Turn or Heel Face Turn in tag teams and stables.
    • For example, Wade Barrett ruined two groups as a leader/mouthpiece by this trope. First was The Nexus, who he risked his own contract to get on the show at first and treated as equals in various ways including promo time, but as soon as opportunity came to control and humiliate John Cena he basically turned Nexus into his anti-Cena group and even had fun enslaving Cena for a few months while nothing else was happening for the group. This led first to David Otunga being The Starscream, then the entire group revolting and throwing him away for CM Punk. Fortunately, Justin Gabriel and Heath Slater preferred him to the Cult-directing Punk, so they and Ezekiel Jackson joined him on Smackdown in the Corre. He insisted that they were equals, there was no leader, and he had learned his lesson, but then a #1 contender battle royal popped up and he said the Corre would be helping him win and it all deteriorated from there. Within two months, Jackson was kicked from the Corre and Slater and Gabriel disbanded it, all because of Barrett's insatiable ego and Greed.
    • Doesn't end there, though. Slater and Gabriel stayed partners and friends after the end of the Corre, but that only lasted a couple of weeks. They fell out and became this trope themselves, with Slater pretty much saying in pre-match promos "I want my spotlight, cause I'm the One-Man Rock BAND, baby!", whereas Gabriel was actually working on a Heel Face Turn while the hook of his then-new theme song, "All About the Power", which within a month was transferred to Otunga and Michael McGillicutty in their final period as the New Nexus (and is still Otunga's theme today), says this exact line three times within fifteen seconds.
  • The Miz. That is all.
  • Bobby. Roode.
  • "What about me!? What about Raven!?"


Tabletop Games[edit | hide]

  • The entire Beholder race from Dungeons & Dragons, combined with a heaping helping of Fantastic Racism. A typical Beholder's world view: It is the pinnacle of creation and the perfect reflection of the Great Mother that spawned their race. Other Beholders of the same breed are tolerable inferiors who have their uses. Beholders of other breeds are disgusting abominations against nature that must be destroyed on sight. Anything that's not an Beholder is barely worth considering—either flies to be swatted when they become a nuisance, or potential slaves. For added fun, although the difference between Beholder breeds is sometimes quite large, other times it can be things so minuscule that nothing that's not a Beholder would even notice. The Beholder with slightly bumpier skin or a different number of teeth is as much a hated inferior as the one who has flame-based powers instead of the standard Beholder suite or has a differing number of eyestalks.
    • In fact, at least one splat claims that every single Beholder is technically its own breed, and even siblings will soon attempt to kill each other over, say, a particular spot or mole.
  • This is the primary characteristic of the colour Black. Mind you, not every Black character is evil, but all are selfish.
    • Liliana Vess is the most extreme of this. Even Sorin Markov feels repsonsibility to the people of Zendikar.
  • The Eldar of Warhammer 40,000 will go to any lengths to preserve their dwindling race. To them, the lives of billions of other races aren't nearly as valuable as a single Eldar. Their situation is so dire (they are the favorite prey of the Slaanesh, the Chaos God of Squick that they created) and their numbers so few that this extremely ruthless attitude is the only way they can delay their extinction.
  • Malfeas in Exalted is a particularly impressive example. The Demon City has to suffer a psychic fracture to comprehend that other people might exist independent of His goals and desires.

Only in the grip of true madness can Malfeas consider the terrible possibility that the universe might contain more perspectives than his own.


Theatre[edit | hide]

  • Lulu of Shine: A Burlesque Musical has a number with this title.
  • Glinda ("It's Gah-linda!") acts like this in the beginning of Wicked.
  • The Show Within a Show "Springtime for Hitler" in The Producers features, in the musical version, Hitler singing a song entitled "Heil Myself", which is everything the title promises.
  • The villainess Lady Jacqueline Carston lampshades this trope in her hilarious song Thinking of no one but me in the comedic musical Me and My Girl.
  • The Book of Mormon has Elder Price. The first song he and his nerdy missionary brother, Elder Cunningham, sing together is even called, "You and Me (But Mostly Me)".


Video Games[edit | hide]

  • Fable. Reaver, the Hero of Skill.
  • Dr. Weil, the utterly despicable Big Bad of the Mega Man Zero series. It all started with how he, and HIM ONLY, thinks humans deserve to rule the Reploids, single-handedly triggered the Elf Wars. Later, he is given a Fate Worse Than Death that is technically escapable. Then he starts taking over the world, and making people suffer just because they all made him suffer. As Weil puts it:

Dr. Weil: Justice!? Freedom!? Worthless ideals! You Reploids are just machines, but you started a war a long time ago in the name of freedom! And humans! Look what they did to me! Driving me away while spouting the word "justice!" Zero, would you insist on saving them!? Controlling the Reploids is nothing! The destruction of all mankind is only fleeting!

  • Possibly Wario in Wario Land and Wario Ware, although he's also heavily obsessed with monetary gain. On a similar note, most of his enemies are like this as well, which is probably why he's never really portrayed as the villain.
  • Similarly, the villains from the Mario & Luigi series, the first and third games in particular. Cackletta starts out more or less like any normal villain, but turns into this roughly when she takes over Bowser's body to become Bowletta. Fawful is already in this in the first game (he has a literal camera crew with spot lights and speech before his boss battle), but by the time of Bowser's Inside Story, has gone straight off the deep end, with his face on every object in sight (statues, floors, trains) and the entirety of Bowser's minions treating him as a celebrity under mind control.
  • My World, My Way. It's in the title. After all, when you're a Princess who can change the fabric of reality by pouting, why wouldn't it be about you? Of course, the reason she's doing anything is to learn how not to be a stuck-up princess.
  • Final Fantasy IX has Kuja, who pretty much robs the whole friggin' bakery. The motivation for his Suicidal Cosmic Temper Tantrum: He was informed that he was mortal and thus would die soon, and he found it utterly unfair that the rest of the universe was allowed go on existing without him. Naturally, something had to be done to correct this grave injustice.
  • God of War, has Kratos, a man who killed an entire pantheon rather than admit once that maybe, just maybe, something was his own damn fault. Most evident in the second game, when he starts doing the exact same thing that Ares did. The thing that prompted the gods to help Kratos kill him. And then he claims that the Gods of Olympus betrayed him by stopping him.
    • This gets called out in the third game, where Hermes gives him a Hannibal Lecture on how his path only leads to destruction and Kratos undergoes a slow Heel Realization.
    • Lampshaded in the first game, where it's shown in a flashback that his wife Lysandra refused to believe that his brutality was for "the glory of Sparta" as he claims, telling him that he does it all for his own personal glory.
  • Mouri Motonari from Sengoku Basara. What we have here is a guy who claims himself to be 'The Child Of The Sun', commands a battalion of devoted soldiers... that he considers disposable pawns, and will kill when it's beneficial to him, then takes all the glory for himself (to be fair, he does come up with 100% of the strategies). His goal is to, you guessed it, Take Over The Land. And while others have pretty righteous reasons for doing this, Motonari does it for himself only.
  • It is taken Up to Eleven with Zanza from Xenoblade Chronicles, the local Jerkass God who is utterly incapable of acknowledging the value of anything that isn't himself, and is constantly using his power to destroy and rebuild the universe because fuck you.
  • Arl Howe from Dragon Age: Origins, who was also The Resenter. He betrayed his best friend, Bryce Cousland, and slaughtered most of his family before throwing his lot in with Teryn Loghain. When questioned about this later by a human noble PC, he has the audacity to claim that Bryce was a traitor because he made frequent trips to Orlais. Throughout the conversation, however, he reveals that he was simply resentful of the Couslands' success. As shown in the Awakenings expansion, Arl Howe's actions end up bringing shame to his family and his children end up as pariahs. Even his Famous Last Words are an example of this trope.

Maker spit on you … I deserved more …

    • It gets better. Arl Howe's family were collaborators during the Orlesian occupation of Ferelden, and Howe himself only switched sides to fight alongside the loyalists in the later stages of the war. So he's using the excuse of Cousland allegedly being an Orlesian collaborator to justify murdering him when he himself actually was one back when Orlais was actually invading Ferelden, and descended from same, and only stopped being because the Orlesians were losing.
    • And Marjolaine too. Marjolaine betrayed her disciple and lover under the belief that Leliana would EVENTUALLY betray her, and then attempted to sell out her own country to Harwen Raleigh, a man who can be charitably described as a Complete Monster.
      • When you meet her in the main game, she still thinks it's all about her. If you try to tell her that Leliana has moved past her betrayal to help fight the Blight she angrily dismisses you and insists otherwise. Marjolaine actually believes she is more important than the freaking Darkspawn.
  • Tales of the Abyss main character Luke starts out this way. Anything that does not involve either himself or Master Van is boring and unworthy of his attention. A large part of the story focuses on his transition from a self-centered, spoiled brat into a self-sacrificing hero.
  • Tales Of Destiny 2 has Barbatos Goetia, who ended up being written out of history for his utter lack of sympathy towards both his comrades and enemies, using the former as tools to gain more glory for himself. When he's revived by the Big Bag, he's perfectly willing to travel through time for the purpose of killing the heroes of the first game on the promise that he'd be made into a hero if he did. He maintains this mentality to the very end, where he opts to commit suicide rather then be defeated by the party, on the basis that he views himself as the only one worthy of taking his life.
  • Prince Laharl from Disgaea is, by his vassals' accounts, a self-centered brat with a massive entitlement complex. For example, he didn't expect to actually pay his vassals, since he'd have to share his allowance. He eventually shapes up (a little) when he realizes that they won't work for or respect him otherwise.
    • His vassal Etna is not above it either. She's perfectly willing to send her minions on suicide missions to satisfy her Sweet Tooth, and barely pays them anything. In the second game, she joins the party after an incident where she screws them over by giving them a fake ingredient For the Evulz. This backfires when their ritual inadvertently causes her power to vanish, then she proceeds to demand they fix her problems for her despite being the one at fault. However, she later opens up to Hanako after she shows interest in her, and eventually takes in and trains her to become a Future Badass Demon Lord after the two grow closer together.
    • After the sheltered princess Rozalin is accidentally summoned, she initially does this when she demands Adell focus entirely on her needs. She gets over it over the course of the story after befriending Adell's siblings, seeing the effects of her father's curse on the world, and being touched by Adell's commitment to his promise.
  • The first hint that Ghetsis' motives may not be wholesome is when he slips up in a speech at Castelia City. He is quick to correct himself, but for the observant, the damage has already been done.
  • Jon Irenicus from Baldur's Gate 2 to a horrifying degree. He was like this even before his soul was stripped away. Irenicus endangered the lives of his entire race by trying to siphon the power of the Tree of Life in his bid for godhood; an act so heinous and sacrilegious that the Elven Queen Ellisime (who was his lover at the time) tore away his immortal elven soul and banished him with the Elven gods' blessings. Irenicus of course considers them monsters for taking away his soul and doesn't even acknowledge that maybe he had it coming what with nearly killing his own species. It Got Worse when the lack of a soul caused him to develop a Lack of Empathy as well. Irenicus doesn't see people as people anymore after that point. To him, they are just tools to be exploited, slaves to be worked to death, experimental subjects, or targets for revenge.
    • Note that he needed some prodding by his much more empathy-lacking sister Bodhi before he started this kind of mindset.
  • Rift - Prince Hylas comes to mind as while this isn't necessarily the primary motivation for the rest of House Aelfwar departing to join up and work with Greenscale's life plane, it certainly is for him. When his lover left for war and returned as basically one of The Messiah, he spurned her for no other real reason than that he and the other High Elves were no longer the Vigil's favourite.
  • What self-professed Objectivist Andrew Ryan says of himself through the creation of his underwater capitalist paradise Rapture in the first two BioShock (series) games.
  • Alex of Golden Sun. When you encounter him in The Lost Age after adding Piers to your party, he's quite offended that you found a new Water Adept who actually cares about your mission enough to, you know, tag along and help you himself... and then he reveals his hypocrisy by introducing you to his new allies. And then he double-crosses everybody, including Karst and Agatio.
  • James Tobin from In the 1st Degree. Yvonne Barnes states that Tobin is completely full of himself, and that he ended up blaming his business partner Zack for all his problems. Interestingly, it is stated that he slept around, and that he was likely cheating on his girlfriend Ruby. However, the minute he finds out that Zack and Ruby had a one-night stand, he flies into a terrible rage and decides that he has to murder Zack. Yes, he thinks it's okay for him to cheat, but it's not okay for his girlfriend to cheat. What you have here is a man who lives and breathes this trope.
  • In World of Warcraft Garrosh demonstrates this sometimes. Baine Bloodhoof calls him out on the fact that his chief concern over killing Baine's father appears to be that he lost honor by killing him an unknowingly poisoned weapon.
  • The Boss (player character) after he stops being a mute from Saints Row 2 onwards is so much full of himself(or herself) that he immediately starts a full-scale war against basically anyone who offers him a small share.
  • Terumi Yuuki/Hazama from BlazBlue shows great case in this. So what if he has to be hated in order to exist? He enjoys the suffering he has to inflict on people in order to ensure that they hate him, and he often goes out of his way to Break the Cutie with The Reason You Suck Speeches, Hannibal Lectures and general Mind Rape for the simple sadistic enjoyment of doing it. His belief is that the whole world is a lie, the only truth is despair and he's going to show it to the world, whether they like it or not. The problem: Nobody else thinks like that except him. The non-problem: He may be powerful and cunning enough to show it, anyway.
  • In Dwarf Fortress, the two most popular topics for necromancers to write about seem to be themselves and literary criticism of the books they wrote about themselves.

Visual Novels[edit | hide]

  • Shun in Eien no Aselia.
  • The world of Fate/stay night and everyone in it belongs to Gilgamesh. He'll kill anyone he thinks needs killing. He'll allow a self-admittedly evil man to kidnap, betray, and murder, because the victims were worthless scum anyway. But if someone goes around the city killing its citizens without his permission, well, that's a disgusting crime. Oh, Gilgamesh also eats the souls of forsaken orphans for magic energy, thinks that a little genocide would improve what he sees as a global overpopulation problem, and brutalizes, humiliates, and would-have-raped Lawful Good Lady of War Saber in a grotesque parody of courtship. In short, the "Good" part of his Word of God Chaotic Good alignment is practically impossible to swallow. Possibly the real reason The Corruption had no effect on him was because he was ALREADY rotten inside.
    • He doesn't amuse himself only with evil, however. He's also de-aged himself to play soccer with a bunch of kids who needed an extra teammate. He might be too bad to be Neutral, but even Evil, he's not pure evil.
    • This also applies to Lord El-Melloi of Fate/Zero. He fully expects the world to be handed to him on a platter and everything to always go his way. When Kiritsugu is battling him, he is of course naturally going to be the winner, because he's a prodigy! Things don't go well for him at all. But the whole time he's losing, he doesn't even realize it, because for him, the world works by giving him stuff and letting him always triumph. This also taints all his relationships, to the degree that he cannot understand his Servant's (entirely selfless) agenda and think he's hiding something because he thinks everyone else thinks like he does, and believes his fiancée loves him even though she hates him and their Arranged Marriage. In the end, Kayneth's one and only selfless act -- sacrificing his Servant and bowing out of the Grail War to save his fiancée's life -- leads directly to his death as Kiritsugu has both of them shot immediately afterwards.


Webcomics / Web Original[edit | hide]

Nale:I'm happy to see that you are still firmly rooted at the center of your personal universe, Julia, but sadly, you are no longer of any use to me.

Western Animation[edit | hide]

  • Eric Cartman from South Park. For example, the Imaginationland episodes had him not caring about the possible destruction of all imagination by evil characters or by the US government's nuke. Instead, he just cared about proving that he won a stupid bet so that Kyle would have to suck his balls.
    • Satan in the episode "Hell on Earth 2006". The main plot is about him trying to host the perfect Halloween party. He wants a Ferrari cake to be wheeled into the room at midnight, but the Three Murderers accidentally smash the cake when they pick it up from the shop. Because they murdered all the bakers in the shop, they have to bake a new cake themselves, but they make it a different car model so they can bring it back in time. When they finally get back with the new cake, Satan is disappointed that it's not a Ferrari. When his minion says the guests are still happy, Satan screams, "It's not about the guests! IT'S ALL ABOUT ME!" This prompts a My God, What Have I Done?, when he realizes he's acting like those spoiled 16 year old girls in those reality shows like "My Super Sweet Sixteen" that the episode was parodying.

Minion: Come on Satan, you are nowhere near as bad as them.

  • In Barbie and the Diamond Castle, Lydia's villainous motivation comes from her desire to be the only muse and keep all music for herself.
  • In case you don't know who the robot's talking about when he (repeatedly) invokes this trope, he always ends his this-trope-invoking statements with "...me, Bender."
  • Although Kuzco of The Emperors New Groove and later -School isn't a villain, it's definitely all about him. A lesson he learns and forgets in every episode. Heck, he's arguably the Trope Codifier, considering the fact that his picture is used for the page.
    • At least he had learned his lesson by the time of Kronk's New Groove, at which point he's downright selfless.
    • How bad is his narcissism? The opening theme for The Emperors New School involve him claiming the trope title twice (once he had nameless guards #4, #7, #13 and #57 sing "EXACTLY" after he said it, and the other was because the lyrics mentioned his friends), and his name being spelled out twice. Once just because he liked it so much the first time.
  • Starscream, from Transformers Generation 1, in every incarnation, in every timeline. His Moral Myopia is so acute that despite being the Trope Namer of treachery, he has blown up in fury at anyone else's attempts at betraying, nay, even insulting Megatron.
    • Starscream's objections to people attacking Megatron are perhaps closer to The Only One Allowed to Defeat You. Still fits the trope every time he, himself, is betrayed.
    • Energon Starscream doesn't have this trait at all, then again his links to the character were mostly created by the English dub (in the Super Link original edit he is "Nightscream" and linked to the character merely by appearance).
    • Even more so is Megatron, in most continuities his primary rule in the Deceptions, is do what I say, or taste my blaster.
  • Azula from Avatar: The Last Airbender is another perfect example, and when things start to fall apart she goes nuts. She does have some desire to prove herself to Ozai although Ozai couldn't care less.
    • Though it is implied that part of the reason she goes nuts is that she realized her friends actually meant something to her, and cannot deal with the realization that their betrayal indicates that she was unworthy of their trust.
    • Zuko after his banishment was obsessed with capturing the Avatar to restore his honor, so much so that he helps Aang escape from Zhao even though he's an enemy of the Fire Nation. Zhao himself (who is also incrediby self-centered) calls Zuko out on putting himself before his nation; hypocritical, but Jerkass Has a Point. The sad thing is that Zuko genuinely cared about the Fire Nation before his banishment and that love for his people is what got him into trouble in the first place.
  • Bobbi Fabulous in Phineas and Ferb. Lampshaded in his "I Am" Song, predictably titled "Fabulous" in which one of the lines is "It's all about me!"
    • Those claiming that Bobbi is an example of this trope solely because of the song seem to be ignoring its context. Bobbi had no interest in rejoining the band because he thought that they didn't need him and that no one else remembered him anyway, since he was only the bassist. The song was actually all Phineas and Ferb's creation, convincing him that his "style" was as important to the show as the musical prowess of the other members.
    • Candace tends to fall into this a lot. She'll ditch friends and family alike to spend time with Jeremy, and she'll drop anything for yet another chance at her ill-advised, obviously pointless, and arguably spiteful self-appointed mission of busting her brothers. Even with that aside, though, the beginning of "Candace's Big Day", when she criticizes her aunt's marriage plans because they didn't involve her, take the cake. Even her own mother nearly called her out on that one.

Candace: What about my needs?

  • Teen Titans: In "Titans East Part 2" Robin accuses Cyborg of being this.
    • Ironically Robin himself was actually pulling this trope as well during the conversation.
  • Angelica from Rugrats.
    • Demonstrated when she calls a daytime talk-show host to explain that she's worried about a new sibling and throws the phone in the garbage when he explains the world doesn't revolve around her.
  • Most of the characters in Family Guy fall into this trope at one point or another, especially in the later seasons.
    • Due to her being the Butt Monkey and Woobie, Meg rarely has this anymore. And when she does, it's entirely justified.
      • In earlier episodes, prior to overly sadistic reinventions of the rest of the cast, Meg acted as a much less provoked Bratty Teenage Daughter however.

Meg: I can't believe you would put your family before your own daughter!

    • Tom Tucker displays the trope in spades. His home is filled with pictures of himself, he carried a huge poster of himself to hang up on the wall when he went to the mansion with the others, and nearly all of his conversations are about him.
  • The majority of scenarios and problems caused by the cast in American Dad also usually revolve around this trope. Roger is almost this trope at its most intensified. He will walk over, victimise or outright kill for the most minor indulgences or offenses on his behalf (It is possible he has this attitude towards humanity due to being a parody of The Grays however).
    • In one episode everyone gets sick of Roger being a self-centered asshole and calls him on it, so he completely changes his ways and becomes self-sacrificing and friendly—and nearly dies as a result. As it turns out, if his species doesn't express their metaphorical bile, it becomes literal bile that builds up and poisons them. One wonders exactly how they managed to work together long enough to found advanced mathematics, let alone the space program that put Roger on Earth.
    • In another episode, he's so fixated on getting the birthday party he wants that he basically tells Stan and Francine to forget about their own son (who's been aged up to an old man and doesn't want to go back) so they can work on the party.
  • Gorillaz bassist Murdoc Niccals. The song "Murdoc Is God" should be a sufficient warning sign.
  • As proved by the page quote, Daffy Duck represents this trope well too, especially Chuck Jones' later version, which Word of God stated to in fact be revolved around the word "Selfish". He would often try to place a threat to his well being against another poor shmuck (usually Bugs, who had no problem sending them back on him). That said this tendency and a lot of Daffy's other Jerkass traits were also provoked slightly by his sadistic sense of humor as well.
  • Shake of Aqua Teen Hunger Force lives for his own amusement. And everyone around him better do the same.
  • King Julien from The Penguins of Madagascar. "...which is not very interesting to me because it is not about me. You see how that works?"
  • In All Star Superman, Clark Kent is interviewing Lex Luthor in prison when the Parasite escapes and attacks him to drain his powers, which have become supercharged due to extra exposure to the sun. Parasite is clearly draining the energy from something, since he is literally growing in size, and he keeps shouting about the strength and power he is sensing, explicitly comparing it to the sun, but Luthor never realizes that he himself is not the target. Even after Parasite has been defeated, by a fortunate earthquake that happened to save Clark Kent just in time, Luthor rants and beats his unconcious body, explaining that this is the penalty for daring to challenge Luthor.
  • Syndrome aka Buddy Pine in The Incredibles. As a boy, he constantly pesters Mr. Incredible and implores him to let him be his sidekick. When he tries to show his skills, and almost gets killed doing so, the resulting damage leads to a widespread Super Registration Act which forces Mr. Incredible into retirement and hiding. Yet years later, Syndrome still has the gall to say he got the short end of the stick.
  • Lucius on Jimmy Two-Shoes.
  • Birch Small of My Life Me is this through and through.
  • Peggy Hill of King of the Hill is a huge egomaniac who thinks she's right about everything even things she has very little knowledge of and thinks she can do no wrong, and if she's involved in something she will often completely take over it, and often takes credit for others ideas.
  • While all four of the main characters from Xiaolin Showdown have displayed various degrees of self-centered-ness, and Raimundo even defected to the Heylin side for all of two episodes (to say nothing of the villains), the winner by far is Omi... which is why he doesn't actually get to be The Chosen One. Raimundo does.


Real Life[edit | hide]

  • Not too long ago, the prevailing scientific opinion was that all living things were motivated by individual self-interest (presented in the form of basic instincts and drives). Though Biology Has Marched On, Common Knowledge still dictates that altruism seldom extends beyond the boundaries of a creature's own species, with the few acknowledged exceptions not always including homo sapiens. Exceptionally cynical analysts claim that all human motivations can be boiled down to self-interest, whether enlightened or ignorant, direct or via some nebulous philosophy. The counterpoint is that this is necessary for survival and is the main push behind Natural Selection.
    • To take this further, each lifeform is essentially an agent for the benefits of the genes that created it. Even personal choices and decisions must take a back seat if they don't further the biological imperative. For all intents and purposes we are programmed to be self-centered in servitude to the arbitrary and unending purpose of the coding that built us, and which we carry throughout ourselves.
  • As the Titanic sank, a first-class passenger on one of the lifeboats was heard to remark that her favorite night-gown was still aboard the ship. Society ostracized her and her husband for the rest of her life. Of course, she could have been babbling in shock.
    • This is also a Disproportionate Retribution, definitely. Sure, the woman was being selfish, but nobody deserves that. And her husband was ostracized even though he didn't say anything selfish.
  • In one of the more tragic examples, it's one of the common motivations behind familicide. The warning signs are almost identical to those for suicide, but some people can't conceive of their family surviving without them, so they take the entire family with them.
    • Case in point, John List, who killed his entire family because he couldn't own up to his financial woes and evaded capture for decades, almost becoming a Karma Houdini.
  • Most people go through this in some way or another during their teenage years.
  • One case from (The Customer is) Not Always Right: A newspaper wrote about me! Why don't everyone know this already?
    • Make that several cases. Some customers will make demands that are illogical, illegal, or just plain stupid and will fly into a tantrum if they don't hot to it immediately. A few of them seem to expect that cashiers, salespeople, and tech support specialists are all telepaths, so why should they make any effort at all to describe the problem? Those cashiers, salespeople, and tech support specialists are all idiots are who are too damn lazy to do something I could easily do myself.
    • And one infamous golf incident that was dubbed "Always right, even when shooting down a helicopter". The guy was upset because another golfer was having a heart attack on the green, and the EMT helicopter was blocking his shot.
  • Many or most real life dictators, and even a few not-so-bad political rulers. Some religious authorities might also qualify, but of course opinions will vary.
  • In addition to the narcissistic and antisocial personality disorders mentioned in the description other mental problems that can cause this kind of behavior are grandiose delusions, manic states, and hypomanic states.
  • Solipsism. The philosophy that all there is is you.
  • Children from ages 0–7 have this mentality—developmentally, it's called "egocentrism." They cannot see a situation from another person's point of view and do pretty much everything in self-interest. For example, a child is given a box of crayons and asked what they think is inside. They answer, only to open it and find candles. The box is closed and the child is asked what Mommy will think is in the box when she comes in. Children below the age of about 5 will invariably answer with "candles". They cannot perceive that since Mommy wasn't in the room when they opened the box, there is no way she could know there wasn't anything but crayons inside the box. This developmental milestone (seeing things from another's point of view) is called "theory of mind" and is incredibly important in dealing with other human beings. As one can well imagine.
    • Children with autism tend to not develop theory of mind or develop it much later than their peers, which can lead to many social problems as well as academic ones.
  • In another sad example, environmentalist Tim Treadwell seemed to develop into this viewpoint near the end of his life. The nearly forty-eight hours of footage he made of himself clearly show that he was beginning to think of himself as a crusader or knight defending the bears of the forest he often lived amongst. He also began to develop paranoid beliefs that the Park Rangers and some poachers he believed were in the area were all trying to hunt him down and kill or arrest him.
  • Paris Hilton. The living, breathing, walking personification of pathological narcissism.
  • Cult leaders, such as Charles Manson, have their own cult which revolves around what they say.



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