Megamind: Oh, you're a villain all right. Just not a super one.
In the Genre Savvy world of spoof superheroes, Megamind, the greatest villain in the world, is locked in an eternal battle against the seemingly invincible and perfect Metro Man. In their last confrontation using Megamind's go-to Damsel in Distress, Roxanne, he finally (and surprisingly) manages to kill his arch nemesis.
As he gloats over his victory, he soon realizes that his greatest wish was his worst nightmare: he had no plans for what to do after he had gotten rid of Metro Man, and he is morose that he no longer has somebody to fight against. To cure himself of this he creates a new superhero, Titan, to be his nemesis. But things do not turn out as planned, and it is up to him to stop his creation before it is too late.
Produced by Dreamworks Animation.
- Abhorrent Admirer: Hal towards Roxanne, at least initially. He's inappropriate and awkward enough with his advances to make Roxanne very uncomfortable around him. And then he gets superpowers, which does not help with this.
Hal: If I were Metro Man, Megamind wouldn't be kidnapping you all the time.
- It's Played for Laughs, but when taken at face value, it becomes even more creepy, especially knowing what happens later.
- AcCENT Upon the Wrong SylLABle: Megamind pronounces many words in a quirky way, especially "Metro City" (he pronounces it "Metrocity", which sounds like "atrocity"). This comes back to bite him.
- Ollo! - Hello
- Shool - School (although this could also be a "shul" reference in the sense of a synagogue and the education therein)
- RevAHnge - Revenge
- MelONkuhlee - Melancholy
- Speyayder - Spider, though that might have been for dramatic effect as he pronounces it correctly before he says speyayder.
- The Ace: Metro Man.
- Action Survivor: Roxanne Ritchi. Got a death trap? She has seen it before and she is unimpressed.
- Actor Allusion: While Megamind flips through the channels covering Titan's rampage in the city, one channel shows a waterskiing squirrel, similar to the clip used in Anchorman. Earlier, he stands too close to the exploding Metro Man monument. And just to score the trifecta, he pretends to torture Bernard (whom he's been impersonating) by shouting into an open shaft, yelling in pain as Bernard.
- Adorable Evil Minion: Minion has the whole 'alien piranha in a gorilla-themed mecha death suit' thing going on, but is otherwise quite sweet and lovely. Also applies to the Brain Bots, which when not obeying Megamind's every whim tend to act like puppies.
- Adorkable: Megamind, whether he's in his Bernard disguise or out of it.
- Affably Evil: Megamind and Minion.
- Affectionate Parody: Of Superman and superheroes in general.
- Alien Arts Are Appreciated: Inverted: Megamind, an alien, displays a notable fondness for Classic Rock and Pop music from Earth. Played with, in that he also seems to sincerely appreciate Metro Man's god-awful attempts at music (in this case, of course, he could just be doing a bit of buttering up to try and get the maker of said awful music on side).
- Alliterative Name: Megamind. Metro Man later Music Man. Roxanne Ritchi. (Minion deserves an honorable mention for fitting the "M" theme.)
- All Robots Are Dogs: The Brain-bots act like a big group of puppies when not carrying out an evil plan—they swarm over to Megamind at the start while Minion says they missed him, play fetch with wrenches and Megamind frequently refers to himself as "Daddy" regarding them (much like most pet-owners do).
- The Spider-bot in "The Button of Doom" short whimpers like a dog when Megamind tells Minion that he can't keep it, too. Minion even calls to it exactly like one.
- All of the Other Reindeer: Part of the reason for Megamind's Start of Darkness.
- All-Star Cast: It is a Dreamworks movie after all.
- Analogy Backfire: Titan tells Roxanne that her idealism is unrealistic, and that beliefs such as goodness being found in all people are as fictional as the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, and the Queen of England.
- Funnily enough, due to the terminology and the Act of Union in 1707, he is right regarding that last one.
- And Starring: Brad Pitt gets the "And" credit.
- And Then What?: The premise of the movie. Megamind never expected to be able to actually kill Metro Man, and the rest of the movie comes from Megamind trying to figure out what to do next.
- And This Is For: Titan does when fighting Megamind.
Titan: This is for stealing my girlfriend! This one's for Space Dad making a fool out of me! And Megamind, this one's for Space Stepmom! You lied to her!
- Antagonist in Mourning: Megamind after unexpectedly killing Metro Man who was not really dead.
- Also inverted, since he's in the protagonist's role.
- Anti-Hero: Megamind, later in the movie after Titan turns into villain.
- Arch Enemy: To Metro Man, not that he actually dislikes him.
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: After Megamind killed Metro Man he terrorized the city, looted tons of money, stole expensive paintings and he claimed the pet shop for his own.
- Megamind finds Titan had been committing crimes, with stolen bank money, stolen safes... and a stolen bicycle.
- "There is no easter bunny, there is no tooth fairy, and there is no queen of England!"
- Ascended Fanboy: Deconstructed, with Hal. As a regular human he secretly despises Metro Man because he thinks Roxanne is in love with him. When he gets superpowers he abuses them trying to impress Roxanne and, when rejected, goes on a selfish, childish rampage.
- Autobots Rock Out: Megamind is a huge music fan, and accompanies his (extremely impressive) entrances with suitable classic rock. See top of page image.
- Metro Man also does this to a lesser extent; he invokes a lot of Elvis imagery during his introductory scene. The fringe on his costume, the pompadour hairstyle, he even busts a few Elvis-like moves while a remix of "A Little Less Conversation" plays.
- Awesome Moment of Crowning: Megamind at the conclusion. Doubles as a Take Up My Sword (see below).
- Badass Biker: Megamind, in a Lobo flying motorcycle kinda way.
- The Bad Guy Wins: The film was based on the premise, "What if Lex Luthor defeated Superman?"
- Bad Is Good and Good Is Bad: Megamind is taught this very early on by the prisoners of the penitentiary he grows up in. Later, when he is extracting Metro Man's DNA to make another hero:
Minion: Uhh, sir, I think this is a bad idea...
Megamind: You don't know what's good for bad.
- Balance Between Good and Evil: Invoked by Megamind, who learns from experience that supervillains can not exist without superheroes.
- Bald of Awesome: Megamind. Do not deny it.
- Bald of Evil: Megamind is probably an invoked example.
- Batman Gambit: Megamind uses one to escape from prison at the start of the movie. The ability to do a stylish Batman Gambit is Megamind's main superpower.
- Another example was leading Metro Man to the death trap at the observatory.
- And another is Metro Man knowing that if he retired, Megamind would wind up taking his place as Metro City's defender
- Beard of Evil: Megamind himself sports a damn nice goatee.
- Be Careful What You Wish For/Wanting Is Better Than Having: Okay, Megamind, you defeated Metro Man. What now?
- Also, the people of Metro City: Yay! Titan has defeated Megamind! We finally have that new hero we've been wanting to... what's that? Titan's worse than Megamind? ... Oh. Crap.
- Becoming the Mask: Megamind in his disguise as Bernard with Roxie.
- Being Evil Sucks: The film is basically Megamind realizing this. It culminates with the following:
Megamind: I'm the bad guy! I don't save the day, I don't fly off into the sunset, and I don't get the girl!...sigh...I'm going home.
- Beneath the Mask: Titan is not as heroic as Megamind thought he would be.
- Berserk Button: Megamind presses a bunch of these to get Titan to attack him. Big mistake.
- Beware the Superman: Titan is probably the poster boy for this trope. The contrast between him and Metro Man is stark.
- Be Yourself: The rare non-Anvilicious version of this Aesop. Megamind learns that his constant defeat, as pointed out by Roxanne, has turned him into a determinator who is unafraid of losing.
- Big Bad: While he's still very hammy as a villain and ends up reconsidering things by the midpoint of the film, Megamind did set up the dominoes that caused a great deal of damage to Metro City, but it's Titan that ultimately decides to collide against those same dominoes for a very petty, shallow reason.
- Big Damn Heroes: Several times. Metro Man tries to do this at the beginning of the movie. Too bad Megamind tricked him into going to the wrong place.
- Happens twice at the end, once by Minion disguised as Megamind, and another time by Megamind disguised as Metro Man.
- Bilingual Bonus: Megamind mispronounces "school" as "shul", which is the Yiddish word for "school". If we count flower language there is also the bouquet Megamind brings to the Metro Man Museum; the most common meaning you will find for yellow roses is "friendship" and another is "an apology". Most bouquets don't contain dynamite, however.
- As far as "school/shul" is concerned, it could be argued that this is a case of Megamind pronouncing things as he reads them, as is a Running Gag in the film.
- Among his unusual pronunciations, Megamind pronounces Minion the French way (like how mignon is pronounced in Filet mignon). This is quite appropriate since minion basically translates as "cutie" in French, which is an equally accurate description of the character as is the modern English meaning of the name.
- Billed Above the Title/Celebrity Voice Actor: The latter is par for the course with Dreamworks, obviously, but they have been pretty good about avoiding the former after the Shark Tale backlash. Until "FERRELL VS. PITT", that is.
- Bizarre Alien Biology: Wait, how the hell could the fish Minion actually smell that Megamind was wearing cologne? Fish can smell by moving water through their nares, but if Minion were an Earth fish, it would only make sense that Minion could smell the cologne if Megamind were in the water with him.
- He also starts coughing from dust in the air. Despite, you know, being sealed into a water-filled glass dome.
- If we really wanted to get nitpickey, what are the chances that both Megamind and Metro Man could live on earth?
- Boring Invincible Hero: Metro Man, it seems, has no weaknesses. No, not even copper. The interesting thing is, it's boring to nobody except him. And it makes sense. He says himself that at the part where he fakes his own death that he's just "going through the motions." Megamind tries to take over the city, Metro Man defeats him. Day in and day out, (presumably) every single day. And the city keeps expecting him to do this for goodness-knows-how-long. He wants to do something else, darn it!
- Brains Evil, Brawn Good: At least, until Brains wins, and creates a truly evil Brawn.
- Brainy Brunette: Roxanne.
- Brick Joke
- The Brute: Minion has the size and intention, but even when he is actually committing a crime he does not have the mentality or presence of a brute.
- Bullying a Dragon: Megamind taunting Titan for a fight. And damn, does he get one.
- A lesser example could be the Warden taunting Megamind at the beginning of the movie. The guy was practically setting himself up for Megamind to pull a dirty trick on him!
- But He Sounds Handsome: While Megamind is "fighting Bernard" and switching between his illusions to maintain the disguise in front of Roxanne, fake Bernard yells stuff about how strong, handsome and tough Megamind is.
Megamind: (as Bernard) I tried my best, but he's too fantastic.
- Butt Monkey: Megamind himself. He is a comedy villain, so it is part of the job description.
- Hal, before he becomes superpowered and evil.
- Bernard, played by Ben Stiller.
- Call Back: The "Forget-Me stick" in the Credits Gag.
- Camp Straight: Megamind.
- Can't Believe I Said That: When Hal tries to get Roxie to go to his 'off the hook' party he lists the things he's arranged, including a bouncy house and a wedding photographer - you know just in case they do anything they want to keep forever... as a memory... When Roxie passes Hal berates himself for mentioning the bouncy house, because "Girls don't like bouncy houses, they like clowns!"
Hal: Roxie, if I was Metro Man, I'd watch you like a dingo watches a human baby. Wait… (Also counts as Foreshadowing.)
- The Cape (trope): Metro Man.
- Captain Ersatz: The main cast are based upon characters from the Superman comics. Megamind is a mixture of Brainiac and Lex Luthor (with Superman's origin), and by the end of Button of Doom has developed Batman-like characteristics, Metro Man is Superman himself, and Roxanne Ritchi is Lois Lane. Hal Stewart is Jimmy Olsen with the caveat that he has always hated Superman, whereas his name is a mash-up of Green Lantern's Hal Jordan and John Stewart and when he becomes Titan, he takes on aspects of Superboy-Prime.
- Cardboard Prison: Megamind is imprisoned there once in a while, serving out his 88 consecutive life sentences, only to waltz his way out and continue with his evil plans.
- Card-Carrying Villain: Megamind and Minion.
- Chair Reveal: Megamind invokes this during his kidnapping of Roxanne.
- Changed My Mind, Kid: Invoked, Metro Man apparently returns to the fight after claiming he wouldn't return to being a hero because he knew a new hero would step into his place. After scaring Titan silly with Metro Man's persona, Roxanne discovered that Metro Man was actually Megamind using his holographic disguise and gadgets to imitate superpowers. Metro Man never actually returns to save the day and Megamind has finally made the transition from villain to hero. Unfortunately, Titan figures it out as well....
- Character Title
- Chekhov's Gun: Megamind's invisible car and his dehydration gun.
- We see repeatedly that water brings back everything that was dehydrated, from getting water splashed on it, to it raining.
- Chekhov's Gunman: Hal.
- The Chew Toy: Bernard.
- Classic Villain: Megamind combines many iconic traits of comic book villains.
- Color-Coded for Your Convenience: Megamind in black but Roxie puts Metro Man's old white cape on him after his Heel Face Turn, Metro Man in white, and Roxie in red. Titan wears red and white, a strong contrast against the black clothed/blue skinned Megamind.
- Roxie starts in red, but switches to purple once she has fallen for Megamind as Bernard, and dresses in blue once she supports Megamind openly.
- Megamind's eyes are green to represent his envy of Metroman.
- Completely Missing the Point: Titan only wanted to be a superhero to impress Roxie. He has no interest in being a do-gooder. Earlier, he also asked Roxie to come over to his house for a date where he had arranged for, among other things, a bouncy castle and "a wedding photographer"...just in case Roxie decided to marry him then and there. Roxie is understandably unnerved and declines. Hal slaps himself and berates himself for being as stupid as to get...the bouncy castle, because everyone knows girls love clowns.
- Also, this moment when investigating the deceased Metro Man's apparently long-abandoned stronghold:
Roxanne: Look! This glass has ice in it!
- Megamind, as Space Dad, dubs Hal as Titan for his superhero name, invoking powerful near-deities of incredible power. Instead, he hears it as Tighten, as in to squeeze. This is the name he winds up carving into Metro City during his rampage.
- Conspicuous Trenchcoat: Megamind's Brain Bots hide under a trench coat and fedora in a crowd during the opening. It is bookended in the conclusion when we see Metro Man using the same tactic.
- Contractual Genre Blindness: Megamind seems to cheerfully accept the fact that defeat is inevitable in his part of the conflict with Metro Man and operates accordingly. At the beginning, he even begins winding up his current plan under the assumption that it's failed without actually noticing that Metro Man is having a surprising amount of difficulty breaking out of his most recent trap. When Megamind actually ends up winning, he's as astonished as everyone else.
- Conveniently Empty Building: Titan and Megamind crash through one, though the roof and down through every floor.
- Titan picks up an entire skyscraper and flings it at Megamind at one point, crushing several other buildings and carelessly knocking it into another as he turned it. If it wasn't made explicit that the city had been largely evacuated by this point, thus making these all Conveniently Empty Buildings, we'd have to assume this movie's body count probably hit quadruple digits.
- Create Your Own Villain: Played with. The supervillainous Megamind tries to create his own hero because he needs someone to do battle with. But his creation turns out to be even more evil than him, and doesn't have the same moral standings his previous rival had.
- Credits Gag: Clean out your pockets, Megamind.
- Cruella to Animals: Baby Seal Leather Boots.
- Curse Cut Short: At one point, Megamind and Minion are walking to "Highway to Hell" by AC/DC, which gets cut off by another song right as they get to the first instance of 'Hell' in the song. Then it's subverted when Minion fiddles with the boombox's controls, trying to turn it off, and it switches back to the song and the word 'Hell' is almost the only word heard before switching away again.
- Damsel in Distress: Roxanne is a parody of this; she is so used to being kidnapped and rescued that she is not fazed by it anymore. However, she really ends up being in danger by the end.
Roxanne: Can one of you punch my frequent kidnappings card?
- Dance Party Ending: With "Bad", no less.
- Dark Is Evil: Megamind initially.
- Dark Is Not Evil: Megamind evolves into this by the end of the film. The major theme of The Button of Doom is him deciding that Dark Is Evil and changing his style and methods to Light Is Good. It doesn't stick.
- Dating Catwoman: Megamind falls for Roxanne.
- Deadpan Snarker: Roxanne Ritchi. Helps her get through each kidnapping by the hands of Megamind until Metro Man comes to rescue her, as usual, and she can go on with the rest of her day.
- Death Ray: How Megamind supposedly kills Metro Man.
- Deconstruction: The movie examines the relationship there would have to be between Hero and Villain, and that a Super-Hero Origin can just as easily apply to a villain. It also looks at the classic Silver Age story of Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen, getting powers. Mostly, it deconstructs The Bad Guy Wins plot, as the villain no longer has what drives him after the death of his nemesis.
- Department of Redundancy Department: At one point Metro Man's heart is described as "an ocean inside of a bigger ocean".
- "Metro City City Hall".
- De-Power: In the end, Megamind takes away Hal's/Titan's superpowers with the same gizmo that gave them to him.
- Designated Victim: The role Roxanne has been given in the conflict between Metro Man and Megamind. She responds to this with little more than exasperation.
- Determinator: Being so fully invested in the "proper" dance between heroes and villains means that Megamind never thought his plans had a chance of succeeding anyway. So he's been losing to Metro Man repeatedly over the course of his life, 100% failure rating... yet he's never let that be an excuse to give up, but instead let it encourage him to get more creative. Near the end, Roxanne reminds him of this, saying it's his best quality - and convincing him to wade into a hopeless situation once again.
"He would win some... I would almost win others...."
- Died in Your Arms Tonight: Minion. Except he's not really dying. He just likes milking the moment for all the drama he can.
- Disappeared Dad: In a weird reversal, Metro Man's parents are hinted to be very uninterested (his father doesn't even look up from his newspaper when he's flying as a baby), while Megamind's "parents" (the prison inmates) treat him warmly like family, despite teaching him Broken Aesops.
- Disney Death: Minion. At the end of the movie, his fishbowl is broken. He gasps for air in a sequence similar to King Harold in Shrek the Third, and then "dies". However, Megamind throws him into a nearby fountain, reviving him. He apparently did it for the sake of drama.
- The Ditz: Hal strays into this territory at times. Honestly, his idea of romance is something you'd find in a kid's birthday party.
- Ditzy Genius: Megamind.
- Comes to a head when he discovers that Metro Man is still alive. His reaction: ask the ethereal shade what messages he brings from beyond, and poke his face to see if he's incorporeal.
- Dogged Nice Guy: Deconstructed with Hal, who has all the dogged determination but lacks a few of the required qualities.
- Do Not Call Me "Paul"/That Man Is Dead:Titan tells Roxanne never to call him Hal ever again. He is Titan from now on.
- Metro Man calls himself Music Man after faking his death, so that he doesn't have to change the M on his costume.
- Doomed Hometown: Both Megamind and Metro Man come from one. As a bonus, it turns out they are from the same star system.
- Double Subversion: A slew of superhero tropes undergo this treatment.
- Double Take: When it looks like Metro Man has survived the explosion at the observatory and is coming to rescue Roxanne, both Megamind and Minion have a moment where they sigh in relief that he's alright. Then, they remember that this means he's also coming to arrest them.
- The Dragon/The Lancer: Minion.
- Dramatic Curtain Toss: On both the giant Metro Man statue at the beginning and the "Good vs. Evil" battle picture in Megamind's lair.
- Dreadful Musician: Just because Metro Man wants to be a musician does not mean he is any good at it.
- Granted, he hasn't exactly had time to practice and improve yet. Maybe he just needs lessons.
- Dreamworks Face: Typically included in promo art. Lampshaded in The Button of Doom:
"Do you feel the taunting power of my eyebrow?"
- Drunk with Power: Titan.
- Dueling Movies: Despicable Me
- Dumb Is Good: Subverted.
- Easily Forgiven: Megamind had committed enough crimes to merit 88 life sentences, but he saves the city from Titan, and he is the new official hero, beloved by all.
- Not to mention, presumably Megamind and Roxie are the only ones that know that Metro Man isn't dead, but the people don't know that. To them Megamind killed their beloved hero for good. Oh well, guess Megamind is just that loveable.
- Enemy Mine: Metro Man to Megamind.
- Enfant Terrible: Subverted. He was destructive even as an infant, with a knack for creating "objects of mayhem", but he was not malicious about it.
- Entitled to Have You: A big part of what makes Hal so creepy.
- Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: Hilariously invoked with Titan, who's angry at Megamind for, among other things, "lying" to Space Step Mom.
- Even Evil Has Standards: Want to defeat your arch-nemesis and rule the world? Go knock yourself out. Want to destroy the city because of all your bottled-up resentment from a lifetime of rejection? Not cool. At least, Megamind knows how to take "no" for an answer.
- Everyone Went to School Together: Megamind and Metro Man.
- Though Roxie and the real Bernard not only didn't go to school with Megamind and Metro Man, they didn't go to school with each other, either. Metrocity is big enough to have multiple schools, though.
- In addition, Megamind and Metro Man went to a special school for young geniuses.
- Everything's Better with Monkeys: Why else is Minion in a gorilla-style Mobile Suit Human?
- Everythings Funkier With Disco: Megamind has a Pit Trap full of alligators, a disco ball, and disco music.
- Evil Counterpart: Megamind to Metro Man Later Titan takes Megamind's place
- Evil Is Cool:
- Evil Is Sexy: Megamind certainly thinks so.
- Eviler Than Thou: Megamind finds out, to his horror, that Titan turned out to be a superpowered villain who enjoys wreaking havoc out of pure spite.
- Evil Genius: Megamind, to a T.
- Evil Is Hammy: Megamind.
- Evil Is Petty: Titan. Hoo boy...
- Evil Is Stylish: Megamind knows how it goes.
Megamind: Oh, you're a villain all right. Just not a super one.
- Also, Minion demonstrates a hilarious and surprising sophistication, in being able to identify the specific kind of cologne Megamind is wearing, by smell.
Minion: (shocked) Are you wearing "Jean-Paul Gaultier For Him"?!
- Evil Laugh: Done with great gusto, Megamind enjoys villainous cackling.
- Evil Minions
- Evil Versus Evil: Megamind Vs. Titan. Although it depends on whether his Heel Face Turn can be considered complete at this point. It is villain vs. supervillain.
- Expository Hairstyle Change: Hal's hair only turns into Jonah Hill's signature afro when he becomes Titan.
- Eye Beams: Metro Man (and therefore, Titan) has them.
- Eye Scream: Roxy blows a spider right into Megamind's eye, and then Minion then punches him in that eye.
- Eyes of Gold: Minion.
- Face Heel Turn: Hal/Titan, in the second half of the film. It's debatable how much of a face he ever was, but he certainly didn't start as an outright villain.
- Faking the Dead: Metro Man. Turns out, he is tired of being a superhero and wanted to be a musician instead.
- Minion later does this just for the heck of it after taking a nasty blow that breaks his water helmet. Megamind lets Minion have his fun before plopping him in the fountain right next to him.
- Family-Friendly Firearms: Megamind's dehydrator and defuser/infuser guns.
- Faster-Than-Light Travel: How fast is Metro Man? In the nanosecond between the concentrated solar blast and his "death", he gets a skeleton from a "nearby" nursing school, puts his cape on it, comes back to the observatory to lauch the skeleton, and then gets away.
- Feud Episode: At one point, when Megamind is dating Roxanne while disguised as Bernard, he and Minion have a falling out and break off their lifelong friendship.
- Fiery Redhead: Hal, although we do not see the fiery aspect until he has powers and is destroying the city For the Evulz.
- Flying Brick: Metro Man, obviously, and Titan.
- Flynning: Megamind and Titan engage in a round of this with lamp posts; it's actually intended to be harmless Flynning on Megamind's part, but it quickly becomes clear that the feeling isn't mutual.
- Foil: As expected, Metro Man and Megamind are foils for each other, being complete opposites in level of superpowers, moral outlooks, and style, but yet Not So Different after all.
- Foreshadowing: Hal gets the Titan powers via a stray shot into his nose. Later during a fight, his head bashes through a wall and someone's chopstick goes up his left nostril. Which is where Megamind shoves the depowering gun later on.
- As a child Megamind dehydrates and then rehydrates Minion, who 'plays dead' causing his boss to act concerned for him.
- Titan proves that he is not weakened by copper, which is our first clue that Metro Man isn't dead.
- The phrase "Game Over." First seen on Hal's shirt when he films Roxanne, then seen on a television screen when Titan goes berserk, and finally, Titan's threat to Megamind, delivered so he knows he means business.
- In the scene where Hal gains Metroman's powers he's wearing a shirt that says "Bite Me" with a vampire smiley face. What happens when you get bitten by a vampire? According to a lot of versions of the myth you gain superpowers and turn evil.
- Not long before he quits the superhero thing, Metro Man says in his speech to the people of Metro City, "and at the end of the day, I often ask myself: what would I do without you?"
- For the Evulz: Subverted by Megamind; he is a Card-Carrying Villain, but sees his wrongdoings as a form of self-expression rather than an end unto itself. Played straight with Titan, who obviously enjoys causing mayhem with complete impunity.
- For Your Own Good: Minion's excuse to stop Megamind from dating Roxanne.
- Freak-Out: Hal/Titan does not take well to all of his Berserk Buttons being pushed at once.
- Freeze-Frame Bonus: When Megamind and Metroman are bantering at the beginning of the film there are one or two frames where Metroman has disappeared from the observatory and can be seen behind Megamind. This actually leads to a continuity error when you realize that during the Time Stands Still sequence later, Megamind is clearly in a different part of his speech.
- Quite appropriate for a film with Brad Pitt.
- Also, the other functions of the de-gun can be seen this way. The most notable are "demoralize", "de-ath ray" and "decoupage".
- Friendless Background: If not for Minion, this would be Megamind. So much.
- Friendly Enemies: Megamind and Metro Man. When Megamind makes his reveal at the beginning that he had captured Roxanne in his latest ploy, Metro Man plays his part with the usual "You won't get away with this!" lines. Roxanne, as said before, is not as excited to be part of the show.
- From Nobody to Nightmare: Hal to Titan.
- Funny Background Event: While investigating Metro Man's hideout, Roxanne and Megamind come across a glass of water and wonder about the fact that it still has ice cubes in it. Meanwhile, Metro Man -- who they think is dead -- comes in, notices them, and frantically tries to sneak out without being noticed. We find out a few seconds later he has Super Speed, making this an example of Rule of Funny. Alternately, he just panicked.
- On top of that, he is perfectly capable of defying gravity -- why didn't he just quietly float out of sight again?
- Some of the signs seen in Metro City during the final battle are Funny Background items as well, such as "Fauxmatoes" and "We only need two minutes to lube you."
- Gadgeteer Genius: Megamind compensates for his lack of superpowers with his ability to build insane gizmos in a matter of minutes.
- Gangsta Style:
Roxanne: I say we go back to the evil lair, grab some ray guns, hold 'em sideways and just go all gangsta on him.
- Genius Bruiser: Metro Man's flashback reveals that he is actually a pretty smart guy.
- Genre Savvy: Megamind and Metro Man are both really practiced at what their roles as Superhero and Super Villain include. Megamind is happy to submit to being defeated each time he tries an "evil" scheme. He actually ends up so depressed at having defeated his arch-nemesis that he fakes an origin story for a new Superhero to arise and defeat his "reign of terror".
- Getting Crap Past the Radar:
- The leash on Megamind in Titan's 'drawing'.
- Metro Man, when on the verge of being discovered in his hideout. Although we don't hear what it is, the spoilered character appears to be mouthing a very rude word.
- Megamind's emergency escape from his Giant Mecha is pretty... anal.
- Metro Man commenting that he and Megamind were just going through the motions.
- Giant Mecha: Megamind's favorite kind of "toy".
- Glamour Failure: Megamind's holo-watch allows him to look like anyone it scans beforehand. However, he, apparently, forgot to waterproof it. It also shuts off if he bumps it by accident.
- Also, his eyes remain unchanged no matter who he's impersonating. This appears to be the case with anyone using the holo-watch (Minion as well)... with one exception probably used to heighten drama, because the scene would've been had a different feel if you figured it out too fast.
- The Glomp: Roxanne to Megamind in the final scene.
- Glowing Eyes of Doom: When Titan is about to use his eye-beams—namely, when he gets really pissed off.
- Good Colors, Evil Colors: Subverted in The Button of Doom: Megamind starts out trying to fulfill his new role as Defender by replacing his black "Villain" suit with a white outfit and bulky gadgets mimicking Metro Man's powers. But after realizing that he's better off fighting threats his way, he settles with defending Metro City in his old suit.
- Gory Discretion Shot: When Minion disguised as Megamind is Impaled with Extreme Prejudice, the screen momentarily goes black, before cutting to Roxanne's reaction.
- Graceful Loser: Megamind. He is used to getting beaten by Metro Man and is cool with that, especially if he is always jailed in a Cardboard Prison. A cardboard prison whose population he considers his family.
- Green Eyes: Megamind has them. Huge, sweet, green eyes. Whenever he uses his watch to disguise himself as someone else, his eyes are always unchanged.
- Ham-to-Ham Combat/You Fight Like a Cow: Fights between Megamind and Metro Man involve a lot of this. When duking it out with Titan for the first time, Megamind tries it on his new enemy, but realizes he is too bull-headed and spiteful for this kind of duel.
Megamind: Now it's time for some witty back-and-forth banter! You go first!
- Hartman Hips: Roxanne.
- Heel Face Turn: Megamind himself in the second half of the film.
- Held Gaze: Twice, once between Megamind disguised as Bernard and Roxanne after Bernard has "rescued" her from Megamind, and again with Megamind and Metro Man when Roxanne and Megamind discover him alive.
- Hell-Bent for Leather: Megamind is this in spades, he even claims that he wears "Custom made, baby seal leather boots".
- A Hell of a Time
Megamind: If only my parents could see me now.
- Hello, Nurse!: Roxanne.
- Heroic Build: Both Metro Man and Titan are absurdly well-built and muscular. Since Titan becomes this way after gaining his power, it can probably be justified as part and parcel of their superpowers.
- Heroic Fatigue: Metro Man gets so tired of being a hero all the time he fakes his death.
- Heterosexual Life Partners: Megamind and Minion, since infanthood.
- Hey, It's That Voice!: The warden wants photos of Spider-Man, not want your damn lemons!
- High Collar of Doom: Megamind just loves 'em. He even has one on his pajamas.
- Even his supposedly standard issue prison uniform has a high collar.
- Megamind's parents too, so it doubles as villainous and a piece of his culture.
- His Name Really Is "Barkeep": Minion.
- Holding Both Sides of the Conversation: Megamind has a disguise hologram that makes him look like a normal human. At one point he's in a situation where he has to pretend to be both simultaneously. There's a "fight sequence" between the two, where Megamind ends up repeatedly switching back and forth between his normal appearance and the hologram, all the while opening and closing a door over and over to give the appearance that that two are fighting each other.
- Holding Out for a Hero: The people of Metro City, to the point where it's practically a deconstruction; they're so used to relying on a hero that when the hero's no longer there, not one of them is brave enough to stand up to the villain. And then the villain gets bored with the fact that no one's standing up to him. And when someone finally kicks the villain's ass, they all flock to accept this newcomer as their 'hero' without actually stopping to consider whether he actually is a hero, and not a worse villain. And of course, the whole mess started in the first place because the hero was so sick of everyone expecting him to solve all their problems that he just gave up.
- Hope Spot: Metro Man swooping in to save Roxanne. It is just a caped skeleton propelled by the explosion.
- For the civilians, Titan defeats Megamind, but then he says that they aren't free, just "under new management".
- Hot Scoop: Roxanne Ritchi, no surprise as she is a TV reporter. She is also obviously easy on the eyes, as both Titan and Megamind can attest.
- How Do I Shot Web?: Titan's powers, like his heat vision, at least initially.
- How We Got Here: The movie begins with Megamind falling out of the sky, then goes into a flashback as Megamind remembers his life. The time in between the beginning and ending points of the flashback must've been only a few seconds to Megamind.
- Huge Holographic Head: Made of thousands of appropriately colored glowing brain bots.
- And in "Button of Doom", a more straight example generated from the titular button.
- Human Alien: Metro Man.
- Humongous Mecha: Megamind's huge robot suit he uses in his first fight with Titan.
- Hypocritical Humor:
Megamind: He took the name: Metro Man, defender of Metro City. I decided to pick something a little more humble: Megamind, incredibly handsome criminal genius and master of all villainy!
- Idiot Hero: Titan, big time. Until he turns evil, that is.
- If I Can't Have You: Titan's reaction to Roxanne rejecting him.
- I Just Want to Be Normal: Metro Man's tired of being the Designated Hero just because it is expected of him, so he fakes his death and goes into hiding so he can be left alone to do his own thing.
- Also implied with Megamind, especially after he falls in love with Roxanne.
Megamind [disguised as Bernard]: Say I wasn't so normal...
- Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: Minion disguised as Megamind on the skyscraper's anntena when Titan throws it like a javelin.
- Imposter Forgot One Detail: Titan realizes that Metro Man is actually a disguised Megamind when he pronounces "Metro City" as "Metrocity".
- Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain/Not So Harmless: Megamind oscillates between these tropes. At first, he seems more like a sympathetic villainous Graceful Loser whose crimes are of the Poke the Poodle variety - and then he apparently kills Metro Man. Then he vandalizes the city, but never does anything THAT evil. Then he creates Titan. Oops. And finally he atones for his misdeeds, removing him from villain territory altogether.
- Ink Suit Actor: Jonah Hill as Hal.
- In Medias Res/How We Got Here: The beginning of the film is a Book Ends to the final battle with Megamind falling to his apparent death, with the rest of the film being a flashback.
- Insistent Terminology: Megamind's greatest insult is pointing out that, while Titan might be a Villain, he's not got enough style to be a Super Villain!
- Instant People, Just Add Water
- Institutional Apparel: Until he gets his supervillain costume, Megamind, from babyhood on up, has nothing to wear but a prison issue orange jumpsuit (like all the other prisoners).
- Interspecies Romance: Roxie is widely believed to have a romance with Metro Man, who, despite looking human, is an alien. Later, it is revealed that this no more than a rumor: Metro Man is just "not her type". And then, she falls for Megamind.
- Intrepid Reporter: Roxanne.
- Invisibility: Megamind's car.
- Ironic Echo: "Ollo."
- "Hey, my kid can't see!"
- It Is Pronounced "Tro-PAY"/Malaproper: Megamind pronounces a lot of words oddly. Sometimes it is intentional in order to sound more evilish, other times it is just mispronunciation. For example, he says "Ollo" instead of "Hello", "Shul" instead of "School" (See also Bilingual Bonus above) and "Metrocity" (rhymes with "atrocity") instead of "Metro City". It becomes Something Only They Would Say later in the film.
- After being kidnapped and held in Megamind's "deathtrap", Roxanne notices the spider (and pronounces it properly, of course). When Megamind tries to pretend it's part of the deathtrap, he pronounces it "spee-ider", which seems to be an attempt to make it sound more evil and exotic. However, the "Button of Doom" short has him referring to the "Spee-ider-bot", so apparently that's just how he says it.
- Megamind isn't oblivious to this. When disguised as Bernard, Megamind begins to say "shool", but quickly says "school" properly.
- It's All About Me: Even when everyone thought that Metro Man was dead, Hal Stewart seems to think it is an appropriate time to invite Roxanne Ritchi to his party. His selfishness is made worse by gaining superpowers.
- Jerkass: Titan.
- Just Eat Him: Sorta. Megamind's giant head made of thousands of brain bots does chew and chomp Titan, but it seems to be for show.
- Karma Houdini: Although Titan ends up in jail, Megamind, who terrorized the city, "killed" Metro Man, created Titan, caused him to go crazy by abusing his evil technology, and committed enough previous evil acts to earn 88 life sentences, is revered as a town hero when all the good things he did was to stop his own creation. Of course, he makes up for it after the events of the movie.
- Kryptonite Factor: Metro Man is vulnerable to copper. Or so he claimed. Turns out he was lying, and his real weakness, if any, remains a mystery.
- Perhaps boredom?
- Kubrick Stare
- Large Ham: Megamind, though Metro Man is not far behind him in the pork rating, and they both provide great Ham-to-Ham Combat. Averted with Titan. He is not much for posturing.
- Also Minion, in his fake death scene.
- Laser-Guided Amnesia: the Forget-me Stick. Megamind also mentions an "Illiteracy Beam" when he visits Metro Man's monument.
- In The Button Of Doom short sequel, Minion mentions an "amnesia bomb" among Megamind's old schemes. Megamind doesn't remember that one.
- Laser Guided Tykebomb: Titan. Megamind wanted a superhero to fight. Unfortunately, the bullet hit the wrong candidate.
- Last of His Kind: Apparently, both Megamind and Metro Man. Assuming Minion is/was actually part of a species and not just created in a lab, he might be this as well.
- Lean and Mean: Subverted. Megamind is a skinny little guy, but honestly he is more mischievous than genuinely evil, and even that is not a solid condition for him.
- Leitmotif: The riff from George Thorogood's "Bad to the Bone" is frequently used to represent Megamind, presented in different styles depending on the situation.
- Let's Get Dangerous: Megamind isn't quite as incompetent as initially believed, it's just that he has a problem with not beta-testing his evil plans to iron out the kinks and he is generally outmatched by Metro Man. But normally, whomever utters the quote "You dare challenge me?" won't actually accomplish much, rather using it as a statement of overconfidence to brag about how supposedly unstoppable they are. But when you hear the phrase "You dare challenge Megamind?!", shit just got real!
- Licensed Games: Not only was it cross platform, it was also touted as a sequel to the movie. Also, apparently Dreamworks has decided to use the supervillain group idea mentioned in the What Could Have Been entry below, in the games.
- Light Is Good: Metroman
- Like an Old Married Couple: Invoked by Hal, who mistakes Roxie's frightened terror for a lover's argument.
- Looks Like Jesus: Metro Man dresses in white, performs good deeds wherever he goes, walks on water and has people kissing his feet as he passes. Subverted in that he's only doing it because he thinks he has to.
- Love Hurts: "Did you really think I'd ever be with you?" "...No."
- Love Makes You Evil: Titan is only motivated to be a "hero" to get to Roxanne; when he realizes that she does not like him, all hell breaks loose.
- Also in a way with Megamind. He basically considered giving up being a villain while he was with Roxanne. But as soon as she dumped him, he went straight back to his old ways.
- Love Redeems: Megamind's reason to do a Heel Face Turn.
- Loves My Alter Ego: Roxanne unknowingly falls for Megamind masquerading as Bernard.
- Loyal Animal Companion/Non-Human Sidekick: Minion.
- Mad Scientist: Megamind. Death rays, dehydration gun, robot army, need we say more?
- Mad Scientist Laboratory: Apparently the Tesla coils come from a shop in Romania which specializes in super villain needs.
- Magic Skirt: Roxanne's blue cocktail dress.
- Malaproper: Megamind
- Man Child: Hal. Then he gets superpowers.
- Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: Roxanne and Megamind. Megamind is quite flamboyant, while Roxanne seems to have a more domineering personality.
- Master of Disguise: Megamind, thanks to a special watch.
- A Match Made in Stockholm
- Meaningful Name: Roxanne's not the first Roxanne to be wooed by an ugly genius posing as someone else.
- Metaphorgotten: Multiple occasions.
- Roxanne is guilty of this at the museum opening:
[speaking of Metro Man] His heart is like an ocean, inside a bigger ocean.
- Then there's Hal:
Let's wrap this up and ... give it to a child on Christmas ... 'cause we're done!
- Metro Man and Megamind take battle banter to this level:
Megamind: Over here, old friend. In case you haven't noticed, you've fallen right into my trap.
- Minion with an F In Evil: Minion is so pleasant throughout the entire film, that it's highly likely that he went along with Megamind's evil plans less because of being evil and more because it seemed to make his master/friend happy.
- Megamind has an F in evil as well. He never kills anyone. He treats his battles with Metro Man as a game. He has no intentions of enslaving the populace. He wants nothing but to engage in banter-filled battles and it's implied he only does it to get closer to Roxy, which might be why he always fails - he wants to impress Roxy. When he becomes a good guy, however...
- Mobile Suit Fish: Megamind's sidekick is a fish-like alien creature in a large robot mecha-suit. See Shout-Out below.
- Moses in the Bulrushes: Megamind's parents (and Metro Man's parents) sent their children off in escape pods to escape their planets being pulled into a black hole.
- Motion Capture Mecha: Megamind has one.
- My Brain Is Big: As you can see in the picture.
- Names to Run Away From Really Fast: The spider Arachnis deathicus. Which Megamind had totally planned to threaten Roxanne with.
- Necessarily Evil: Megamind decides to become a villain after he understands that the position of The Cape (trope) has been filled by Metro Man, who needs a Foil.
- Nerds Are Sexy: Bernard and Megamind.
- Never Say "Die": Averted with "die", but played painfully straight with "kill", even though the whole premise of the movie was "Villain finally offs his nemesis, what now?". Metro Man is explicitly mentioned as being dead, but Megamind only "destroyed" him. Even Titan finds ways to avoid explicitly saying he'll kill someone, whilst making it perfectly clear what his intentions are.
- Even "kill" is averted with Megamind saying "Minion, if I live I will kill you" when the defuser gun needs to warm up just like the death ray. Although he probably didn't mean it literally.
- Never Trust a Trailer: From the second trailer, this looks like a comedic "wimpy villain vs Jerkass celebrity superhero" premise. This is, however, just the first act, and even that is not quite what was expected.
- Also, it looked like Metro Man was being booed by the crowd and he said he gave up publically. None of it happened.
- None of the ads even mention there being a romantic angle to the film either, despite it being a key element to the plot and Character Development.
- At least one theater poster depicted Megamind, Metro Man, Minion and Titan flying together, implying that they'd all team up and fight together.
- Nightmare Fuel (In-Universe): During Titan's Training Montage, Titan brutally lays into a mannequin of MegaMind, melting its face with his laser vision as MegaMind (Disguised as Space Dad) watches in horror.
- Noble Demon: Megamind himself, arguably. Defeating Metro Man and taking over Metro City is one thing, but actual mayhem or oppression? That wouldn't be sporting.
- No Celebrities Were Harmed: Megamind's "Space Dad" impression is a parody of Marlon Brando as Jor-El. As per Rule of Funny, he speaks with Don Corleone's speech mannerisms.
Megamind: (as Space Dad) You've been blessed with unfathmbable power.
- No Infantile Amnesia: Megamind still remembers (most) of the last thing his parents said to him...when he was eight days old. Of course, he is an alien...
- No Name Given: Metro Man and Megamind.
- No One Could Survive That: Zig-zagged, like so much else in the movie. Megamind does not actually think Metro Man is dead, but wait, he is! Until it turns out he is not.
- No Secret Identity: Metro Man has no secret identity (which makes sense since he was using his powers openly at elementary school). This could be one of the reasons he burns out, since he has no secret identity to relax in.
- Won't Work On Me: Metroman, when Roxanne is throwing things at him and he doesn't react at all. Even as a large stereo speaker is smashed against him, he doesn't even blink or acknowledge what is happening. His hair does get a little messed up.
- No Sense of Personal Space: Hal's doomed-to-fail invitation to his party, is made worse by him moving back into Roxanne's line of sight when she tries to move away.
- The Not Love Interest: Roxanne and Metro Man were never actually involved, despite what Megamind and most of Metro City seems to believe. Roxanne explicitedly says that despite appreciating the guy, Metro Man was too "larger than life" to really appeal to her.
- Not in the Face: Titan says this to Megamind disguised as Metro Man.
- Not the Fall That Kills You: Apparently, Roxanne can survive being thrown over a building, falling to nearly street level and then being caught by the wrist or ankle.
- Obviously Evil: Megamind. Two words: "Black mambaaaaaaaaaaaa".
- Played with by Minion, who is an alien piranha in a huge titanium gorilla-fur mecha death-suit and acts as Megamind's, well, minion, but personality-wise is otherwise rather sweet, pleasant and good-natured.
- Oblivious to Hints: Hal refuses to see that Roxanne isn't interested until she outright tells him (and after seeing her kiss Bernard, which was really just the icing on the cake).
- Oh Crap: Megamind, when Titan tells him he plans to kill him.
- Megamind, when Roxanne discovers his hideout:
Megamind: HOW DID SHE FIND MY HIDEOUT -- uh, how did you find his hideout?
- Titan gets one himself when it looks like Metro Man has returned to kick his ass. It turns out to be Megamind using his holographic disguise watch. Titan returns the favor when he manages to see through the deception.
- Ominous English Chanting: When Megamind is donning the Black Mamba(aaaaaaaaaa).
- Omnicidal Maniac: Titan does not want to rule Metro City - he wants to destroy it.
- One-Dimensional Thinking: Megamind (Minion, actually) drives his hover-bike straight away from the sky scraper that has been thrown at him and Roxanne instead of turning left or right to get out of the way.
- One-Scene Wonder: The real Bernard appears in two scenes. One has him acting cold towards Roxanne and mocking Megamind's "costume" before being dehydrated, and the other has him rehydrated by Minion and getting whacked by his stick.
- Only Sane Man: Minion and Roxanne.
- Our Hero Is Dead: Metro Man is killed, leaving Megamind without a Foil. Subverted in that he was not really killed, he just wanted to retire.
- Outrun the Fireball: At least once when Roxanne and 'Bernard' were escaping from Megamind's lair.
- Megamind has to outfly the fireball caused by a tanker exploding.
- Ow, My Body Part: "Ow! My giant blue head!"
- Pac-Man Fever: Titan is playing a game like this when Megamind comes to get him.
- Paper-Thin Disguise: Bernard thinks Megamind is actually someone in a paper thin Megamind costume. He does not have time to find out he is mistaken before being dehydrated.
- In one scene, Megamind completely alters his appearance (and size) with a hologram... while Minion simply throws on a curly blonde wig and pink apron.
- Peek-a-Boo Corpse: Metro Man. But it turns out it was fake.
- Picked Last: Megamind was always picked last in school during the brief time that he tried to fit in as a normal kid. He was even picked after the cross-eyed girl with the broken leg.
- Pillow Fight: Except with sacks of money. Complete with a slow motion of Megamind getting knocked silly.
- Pimped-Out Cape: Naturally, from Megamind's blue-lined black cape with the spiked shoulders and bat-wing collar, to one of Metro Man's old capes with a fur collar (that Megamind can't resist putting on when he finds it), all topped off by the Black Mamba.
- Pimped-Out Car: After a fight with Megamind, we see Minion ride away on a pimped out Segway. The motorcyle that can fly and the car that can turn invisible might be considered "pimped out" as well.
- Please Wake Up: Subverted with Minion. Megamind is not fooled.
Megamind: What a drama queen!
- Police Are Useless: After Megamind takes over the city, he gets free rein to do whatever he wants, and the only person who even tries to stop him is Roxanne. Specifically, the scene immediately after Metro Man's death is of the police department gathered en mass outside City Hall, preparing for a final showdown... until Megamind cheerfully tells them to "Drop 'em!", at which point all of them immediately drop their weapons and capitulate without a fight.
- Power Perversion Potential: At one point Titan uses his X-Ray vision to look into Roxanne's apartment. Peeping Tom, much?
- Projected Man: One of Megamind's acts. Specifically, using the brainbots to form a huge version of his head.
- Reprised in "Button of Doom".
- Psychopathic Manchild: Titan.
- Punch Clock Hero/Punch Clock Villain/Not a Game: Megamind and Metro Man's battles had their rules—their battles are more like a game than a true fight. Megamind is upset when Titan stands him up for a staged fight after he calls him out, and Megamind quickly learns that Titan has no use for "rules"—he is a murderous thug. In a nice touch, Titan has been playing a video game instead of showing up for the fight. As Megamind chews him out, the video game ends. For the rest of the scene, GAME OVER is displayed on the TV.
- It's interesting to note that Megamind is visibly distressed when Metro Man is in danger, and it takes him a while to celebrate victory.
- Puppy Dog Eyes: Megamind and Roxanne manage this when asking Metro Man how he survived Megamind's death ray.
- Megamind also has ADORABLE puppy-dog eyes when Roxanne dumps him. Alone. In the rain.
- Minion, which is Lampshaded by Megamind.
- Rage Against the Mentor: And HOW.
- Raised by Orcs: Megamind was raised by prisoners at a penitentiary. Surprisingly, he seems to have had a (relatively) happy and healthy childhood. When he gives up on the city and says that he is "going home", the next shot is Megamind turning himself in to the warden.
- Reality Is Unrealistic: When Megamind runs into Bernard at the Metro Man museum, Bernard (who is known to be an "expert" on Megamind) thinks that Megamind is just some cosplayer.
Bernard: Wow, that's a pretty tasteless costume, Megamind's head is not that grossly exaggerated.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Megamind manages to provide one to Titan with two sentences near the end of the movie.
Titan: This'll be the last time you make a fool out of me!
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: See Glowing Eyes of Doom above.
- Reed Richards Is Useless: Megamind tries cleaning up the city with the dehydrating gun, but doesn't actually pick the resulting cubes. Thus, during a sad scene, it starts raining, so all the trash reappears.
- Averted in the end, with Megamind's bots helping rebuild efficiently Metro City's destroyed real estate.
- Regeneration/Redemption Plot: It'd be difficult to find a more exhaustive exploration of a character arc, from birth through raising through rejection by the "normals" to the embracing of the role "destiny" forced him into; the catalyst for change, debate over which role to accept, "wooing" of the protagonist back toward the light, unexpectedly challenging him to do more than play at normalcy, to pick up the hero's mantle... then a Refusal of the Call, but it's not that easy, and our Iron Woobie protagonist has to work for his happy ending.
- Reindeer Aren't Real: "There is no Easter bunny, there is no tooth fairy, and there is no queen of England!"
- Rescue Romance: Roxanne gets hit with zig-zagging flavors of this.
- Metro Man is always saving Roxanne, but they never had any romantic relationship at all; he was just "not her type".
- Megamind is always kidnapping her and trying to impress her, but dates her the old-fashioned way and ends up saving her at the end, which works.
- Hal tries this at Megamind's suggestion, but he's too stupid to realize that dropping Roxanne to her near-death (repeatedly) does not count as a "rescue".
- The Resenter: Megamind, to varying degrees. This was his reason for turning evil in the first place... but it was also played with in his romance with Roxanne.
Megamind: I'm the bad guy! I don't save the day, I don't fly off into the sunset, and I don't get the girl!
- Reset Button: Averted but Lampshaded when Megamind disguised as Bernard admits he looked into it, but the science was impossible.
- Retired Badass: Metro Man.
- Right-Hand-Cat: Megamind has this trope in mind when he kidnaps Roxanne at the start of the movie. He sits in a chair with his back to her, tries to look as menacing as possible... and then whistles for one of the Brain-bots to sit in his lap so he can pet it.
- The Rival: Megamind has viewed Metro Man as this since they were young boys.
- Rousseau Was Right: Double Subverted, While it's certainly played straight with Megamind , Titan is an unrepentant Jerkass and even throws it back in Roxanne's face when she tries to invoke the trope.
- Rouge Angles of Satin: Tightenville.
- Rubber Forehead Alien: Megamind.
- Rule of Funny: An infant lands from outer space into the exercise yard of a high security prison, and he is raised by the inmates as opposed to being seized by the Warden and Child Services within five minutes.
- And of course all the cartoon physics.
- Rule of Symbolism: Metro Man dresses in white, and at one point is seen walking on water. After that, the beard also fits. Not to mention the fact that he landed under a couple's Christmas Tree as a baby.
- Then, to really drive it home, he comes back from the dead (in a manner of speaking).
- All of which isn't too out of place, given that he's largely based on Superman, who is rife with Christ symbolism himself.
- The film goes a long way with the symbolism of clothing:
- Roxanne starts dressed in red, then mourns in black, switches to purple as she's warming up to Megamind and finally to blue when she's on his side.
- Megamind symbolizes his full acceptance of his evil "destiny" with the switch to his darkest cape. More tellingly, he is instantly drawn to Metro Man's old cape as he's trying to play the hero (to the point of putting it on for a full scene), refuses the call by dropping it at the heroine's feet, and later receives it from her when he's proven where his heart lies.
- There's also the different disguises Megamind takes on. Being the Warden at the start (a good guy who stops/contains bad guys) might even be a type of foreshadowing. He's Bernard when he's exploring the world of normal people, the prejudice stripped away for a while. He's the Jor-El type when he's trying to pass on what he knows about being a hero (proving that he understands both sides of the game). And it's no coincidence that when he begins his most heroic effort ever, he looks exactly like Metro Man - or that it's Roxanne who frees him from the disguises twice, first forcing him to confront what he's doing and later allowing him to claim his destiny on his own terms, rather than in the shoes of someone else.
- Then, to really drive it home, he comes back from the dead (in a manner of speaking).
- Running Gag: The fact that all Megamind's strongest weapons need time to warm up.
- Amongst Will Ferrell movies: the water-skiing squirrel appears.
- Code: this is getting silly.
- Samaritan Syndrome: Titan refused to do this.
- Scenery Gorn: There is some very nice detailing in several of the scenes of mass destruction.
- Schoolyard Bully All Grown Up: Played with; the story establishes a conflict around a schoolyard bully who grew up to oppose his former victim... except the victim was the one who became the supervillain and the bully became the beloved superhero.
- Screams Like a Little Girl: Megamind. Lampshaded by Roxy ("Yeah, like that.")
- Screw Destiny: The running theme of the film. Megamind never learns what his parents meant for him and spends his life trying to live up to what he thought they said. Metro Man becomes tired of being a superhero just because everyone expects him to be on and quits to become a musician. Titan refuses to be a hero just because Megamind demands he be one.
- Screw the Rules, I Have Supernatural Powers
- Sealed Evil in a Duel: The reason Metro Man decides to fake his death. To him, superheroing had become an endless cycle of the same battles with Megamind over and over.
- Seen It All: Roxanne Ritchi When it comes to Megamind's dastardly plots and deathtraps.
- Shapeshifter Swan Song: parodied when Megamind's holowatch malfunctions on his date with Roxanne.
- Shooting Superman: Played with. After discovering that Metro Man is still alive, Roxanne begins throwing stuff at him, larger items each time. They smash harmlessly against his head, and naturally he doesn't so much as blink.
- Shout-Out: Several shout outs to the 1978 Superman film which for obvious reasons, will not be listed here. One of the more subtle references? "Tightenville".
- Though it MUST be mentioned that Megamind's "Space Dad" disguise is meant to look like Marlon Brando as Jor-El.
- While notably using the speech mannerisms of another famous Marlon Brando character.
- Megamind asks if Metro Man had a "solitary fortress" (a reference to Superman's Fortress of Solitude) or a cave.
- Hal's gaining Metro Man's powers from his DNA is a reference to the comic The Nail where Lex Luthor does the same thing to Jimmy Olsen for different reasons but with similar results.
- A villain who loves to steal and vandalize paintings, and also throws money into the street? Henchman with a boom box? Looks a lot like The Joker from the 1989 Batman movie.
- Megamind's literally growing up in prison is actually also a reference to the Batman villain Bane, who due to the archaic laws of the country he was born in, had to take his father's life sentence from birth.
- Megamind views himself as the Mr. Miyagi to his intended new superhero.
- Megamind trains Titan with a classic Donkey Kong level, with Minion as Donkey Kong.
- He even jumps the barrels, when obviously he doesn't really have to.
- "No, you can't!"
- "Rumors of my death have been greatly exaggerated."
- Hal Stewart's name is a nod to Hal Jordan and John Stewart. All three of them received their powers from an alien. Most significantly, Hal is the one who famously turned evil because of yellow energy.
- Look around Megamind's office after he takes over the city. Is that the Ark of the Covenant? Yup, it is.
- Megamind's lines after discovering Metro Man alive and well are lifted wholesale from Scene 1 Act 1 of Hamlet.
- Megamind gets a spider on him and gets walloped in the attempt to get it off, paralleling a scene from Madagascar. And Ben Stiller cameos in this movie!
- Minion's furry gorilla suit with a fishtank helmet is likely a reference to Robot Monster.
- The fact that Minion's a goldfish bowl with a fish inside might also be a reference to Bob the Fish from the Earthworm Jim games.
- "My kid can't see" said to someone wearing a trenchcoat.
- Metroman isn't the first superhero to have a museum dedicated to him. The Flash Museum has been a staple of that series for decades.
- Metro Man is gray around the sides, much like Reed Richards and Hal Jordan.
- Megamind's invisible car is a reference to Wonder Woman's invisible airplane.
- Though it MUST be mentioned that Megamind's "Space Dad" disguise is meant to look like Marlon Brando as Jor-El.
- Silly Rabbit, Idealism Is for Kids: The Hannibal Lecture delivered by Titan at the end:
- Sissy Villain: Averted. Megamind is not so much a sissy as he is a Large Ham, though he still Screams Like a Little Girl. Even then, only when the joke calls for it.
- Slasher Smile: Titan, when using his eye beams, once when melting the Megamind mannequin, and again when he's about to do the same thing on the real Megamind.
- Small Name, Big Ego: Subverted. It seems like Megamind thinks he is a lot more successful and imposing than he really has been, but when Metro Man is "killed" he is as shocked as everyone. He knows he is incompetent; that has been his issue since childhood. He learns that he is far better fighting evil than being evil.
- Smug Snake: Megamind. Or maybe he was never meant to be a villain.
- Smug Super: Metro Man in his youth begins this way with the winking and smirking and intentionally showing up young Megamind, but by the time he is grown up? He is genuinely nice and heroic, even to Megamind. Turns out he was burned out from being forced to be a superhero. At the end of the film, he is proud that Megamind took over for him.
- The Smurfette Principle: Poor lonely Roxanne.
- There's also the single, pink girl brainbot, complete with painted "lipstick" on her jaws and metal lashes on her eyestalk. The filmmakers even refer to her as "the smurfette".
- Social Services Does Not Exist: No-one seems to be alarmed by the fact that a child, even an alien one, is growing up in a prison.
- Soft Water: Played with. During the finale, Megamind is falling to his death and knows that water will not break his fall. However, he dehydrates himself into a cube, which does let him survive the fall, and rehydrates upon contact with the water.
- Something Only They Would Say: Titan realizes that Metro Man is actually a disguised Megamind when "Metro Man" says "Metrocity" instead of "Metro City".
- Minion too. When he impersonates the Warden he forgets one of Megamind's life sentences, and when he's Megamind he tries pulling the bars around Roxanne off by hand before resorting to laser.
- So Proud of You: Roxie says this verbatim to Minion, who is disguised as Megamind at the time.
- A hidden Metro Man to Megamind, though the latter never hears it.
- Sorry I Left the BGM On: Just about every song in the film, excluding the original score, is played via one of Megamind's sound systems.
- Spell My Name with an "S": When Titan burns his new self-aggrandizing name for Metro City into the pavement, he spells it "Tightenville". To drive this home, the end credits list Jonah Hill, Hal's voice actor, as "Tighten" instead of "Hal" or "Titan."
- The DVD subtitles also change their spelling of the name from that point on. It's also used in at least some, if not all, of the tie-in books related to the film.
- Spikes of Villainy: On Megamind's outfit, as well as his lair and machinery. Including a spiked up Segway. At one point, Roxie hugs him in such a way that she should by rights have torn her arm open.
- Stalker with a Crush: Hal, Roxie's camera-man. Her rejection of him as Titan begins his Start of Darkness. It is a bad sign that one of the first things Hal uses his new superpowers for is peeping.
- Megamind might also count initially, since it's hinted that the only reason he kept kidnapping Roxanne is because he's in love with her (in his warped not-really-knowing-or-understanding-what-that-actually-is way) and it's his way of being close to her. Unlike Hal, however, he gets better.
- Standard Pre-Ass-Kicking Snippet: The former Trope Namer "Bad to the Bone" is used in the movie, to great effect, as well as several other Badass themes (like "Welcome To The Jungle", "Highway to Hell", "Back In Black and "Crazy Train").
- Stealth Pun: Minion is literally a henchman in a gorilla suit.
- During the "I'm Bad" finale, Minion is doing... The Robot.
- "The die had been cast" in Megamind's opening monologue, explaining his fate and first act of evil: dyeing his classmates blue
- Stepford Smiler: Metro Man's revealed to be a Type A as a superhero.
- String Theory: Megamind uses this as a mind-mapping technique. In order to figure out what he's doing, Roxanne replicates his setup in her apartment. It's also used as the motif for the opening titles and the matching Creative Closing Credits.
- Stripped to the Bone: Metro Man. Supposedly.
- Superheroes Wear Capes: Both Metro Man and Megamind have several.
- Superman Stays Out of Gotham: Implied only, Metroman and Megamind are called the "World's Greatest" hero and villain respectively, implying the existence of others, and the fact that a superhero is still necessary after Titan is depowered and imprisoned implies the existence of other villains or at least normal criminals that the Metrocity police can't handle, but, if any other villains took advantage of Metroman's absence, or any heroes tried to pick up his slack, it happened offscreen.
- Super Speed and Super Strength: Metro Man (and therefore, Titan).
- Swivel Chair Antics: One of Megamind's favourite hobbies.
- Take That: After Megamind kills Metro Man he puts up posters in front of town hall that say "No you can't" with him posing like Barack Obama in his political "Yes we can" ads. Well, technically the posters were inspired by the HOPE posters, but you get the idea.
- There's a super-stealthy Take That embodied by Hal Stewart. The character is an average man granted supreme power by a blue, big-headed egomaniac. Sound familiar? He's even named after two of the most iconic characters in that series: Hal Jordan and John Stewart.
- Take Up My Sword: Implied by Metro Man at the end.
- Taking the Bullet: Metro Man does this with a dodgeball for the teacher in Megamind's flashbacks.
- Tantrum Throwing: Roxie hurling things at Metro Man; since he's Made of Diamond he doesn't even blink as the stuff she throws keeps shattering against his face.
- Team Rocket Wins: The entire premise of the movie is Megamind, the inept villain, finally winning.
- Tempting Fate: Roxie calling Bernard!Megamind "the only normal man in her life".
- That Man Is Dead: Hal screams at Roxie that there is no Hal anymore, just Titan.
- That Poor Cat: Heard when Titan discards the flower cart after failing to impress Roxanne. Also, Megamind accidentally gets a cat while dehydrating all the garbage on the streets. It Gets Better.
- That Poor Brainbot: At the end of The Button of Doom, Minion tosses a remote to the side. A brainbot's "bowg" is heard offscreen.
- Then Let Me Be Evil: Megamind's origin story. No matter how hard he tried to be liked, it only ever resulted in him being pushed away even further, so eventually he decided to give up and just have fun with the reputation being forced upon him.
- There Was a Door: Titan to Megamind after the latter crashes through his wall. Though to be fair, there also was already a gaping hole in the wall; he just made it slightly bigger. And Titan himself was originally responsible for said hole.
- Zigzagged earlier in the movie when Megamind enters through the door... by blowing it up... and then Minion installs a new door.
- Thermal Dissonance
- Thou Shalt Not Kill: Megamind constantly tries to kill Metro Man in the past, but he never actually expected to succeed. Hal/Titan, however, is a thug and will, or at least tries to, kill anyone who gets in his way.
- Throw It In: When handed the tiny (stretchable) Titan outfit, Hal asks "Space Dad" if this is his way of saying he has a son. This line was improvised by Jonah Hill.
- According to the DVD commentary, Roxanne's line, "Girls, girls, you're BOTH pretty! Can I go home now?" was improvised by Tina Fey.
- According to the DVD special feature, "Meet the Cast of Megamind", Megamind's habit of mispronouncing words (such as "Metrocity instead of "Metro City") was improvised by Will Ferrell.
- Time Stands Still: Metro Man reveals that during a fit of superspeed, he was able to infiltrate Megamind's lair, reconsider apprehending him, go to the library and read dozens of self-help books, pick up some fries and a drink at a restaurant, and relax in the park before deciding to fake his death. All in the space of an instant. If you watch closely, you can even see his image dim for a frame.
- Too Soon: Bernard is insulted by Megamind's "costume" in part because he just killed Metro Man. It's kind of in bad taste considering he's running around in a tribute to Metro Man.
- Bernard thought Megamind was someone dressed in a horrible Megamind costume; he wasn't insulted.
- Took a Level in Badass/Let's Get Dangerous: Megamind in the final act.
- Hal. As Hal, he is, well, Jonah Hill. As Titan, he is a muscular stud.
- Took a Level in Jerkass: Titan.
- Trailers Always Lie: The trailers made Megamind out to be a lot zanier with a lot less angst and totally dumps the romance factor. It forgets that Megamind spends a good chunk of the film as Bernard. As well as this, it makes Metro Man out to be more of a glory-hound jerk than he really is - and a lot more important too. While Metro Man IS important, it's his absence that drives the plot, not his presence.
- What Could Have Been: The trailer that seems to indicate Metro Man merely retiring, and Megamind going straight from villain to savior of the city (without any intervening angst), lays out an equally interesting scenario. You could take about half of the existing movie, reframe it and build it up from that basis, and have a pretty neat story.
- Trial Balloon Question: Subverted by Roxanne. She would not mind if he was an alien species... but it is actions that determine a person.
Megamind: Well, that seems kind of petty.
- Troperiffic: The whole point of the movie is to double subvert as many superhero genre conventions as possible. And many of the double subversions are also inversions.
- Try Not to Die / Indy Ploy: Megamind's strategy for defeating Titan.
Roxanne: What's the plan?
- Inverted earlier when Megamind gets out of prison to face Titan.
Warden: (tied up) Good luck!
- Uncomfortable Elevator Moment: Megamind, disguised as Bernard, spends some time on the elevator with Roxanne as the Metro Man Museum is about to blow up.
- The Unfettered: Titan. Which makes him much more dangerous than Metro Man.
- Unlimited Wardrobe: Roxanne, who changes outfits for each new day and occasion.
- Unreliable Narrator: Megamind in the introduction. He calls evacuating his exploding home planet "a career change."
- Unstoppable Rage/Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Titan.
- Unusual Euphemism: Metro Man lets a whole string of these out while trapped in the copper-lined observatory.
Megamind: What did he say?
- Victory Is Boring: The main motif of the movie.
- Video Game Cruelty Potential: Basically, Titan's rampage is the movie version of this as he uses his powers (especially the laser vision) to act out the fantasies of a thousand children playing free-roaming super-hero games.
- Villainous BSOD: Megamind after Roxanne dumps him.
- Villainous Crush: Implied at the beginning, where some of Megamind's behavior towards a kidnapped Roxanne comes off as downright flirtatious. Later, it's a central part of the story, but he's less villainous at that point.
- Villainous Rescue: "YOU DARE CHALLENGE MEGAMIND?!"
- Villain Protagonist
- Visible Invisibility: Megamind's car is said to be invisible, but the audience can see the outlines of it.
- Actually, severely averted - you can't see the outlines of it but the sun's glare reflecting off it. And characters can see this too, it's even turned into a point when the car, which Megamind had lost, is found again during a critical point in the final battle when Roxanne sees the glare - Megamind's most important plot-related weapon was still in the car.
- When Roxanne says Megamind "should look back too", he manages to spot it. Either he's reminded that it's there, or the refraction is just enough to see when you know what to look for.
- Weaksauce Weakness:
Metro Man: Copper... drains... my powers!
- We Can Rule Together: Titan tells Megamind that with his power and Megamind's "big-headed-ness" they could rule the world. Megamind refuses.
- We Have Forgotten the Phlebotinum: Megamind left the De-Power gun in his invisible car. Which he then lost. Because it is invisible.
- We Will Not Use Stage Make-Up in the Future: Megamind's shapeshifter wristwatch allows him to shapeshift into other people using the power of hard light holograms.
- What Could Have Been: Robert Downey Jr. was originally supposed to star. They wound up with Will Ferrell instead.
- The "Art of" book includes some of the things that never made it to the final cut, including a supervillain group, a giant lava monster, and concepts for Minion where his gorilla body was made from a real gorilla.
- The film was originally scripted as a live-action, R-rated, adult comedy. Megamind would have been called Master Mind, and Metro Man: Uberman, and Minion replaced three clones of famous historical figures. The studio did nothing with it, so it was brought over to Dreamworks Animation as a children's film instead.
- Played with in-universe during Megamind's flashback. His pod is initially on course for a palatial mansion, but is knocked aside by Metro Man's, sending him to a rather different destination.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: Averted with Bernard, who appears in the Credits Gag.
- What Have I Done: Megamind damns himself for creating Titan, who turns out to be a unstoppable engine of wanton destruction.
- What the Hell, Hero?: Megamind to Titan, twice in the same scene. First, upset that Titan did not bother to show up to save the city from him, then when he sees Titan decided to rob banks - and a bicycle.
- Megamind and Roxanne Ritchi's response to Metro Man faking his death to pursue a career as a musician, turning his back on the Titan situation.
Roxanne: ... and you gave control of the city to him! (indicates Megamind) (Beat) No offense.
- He might not count as a hero yet, but this is Roxanne's reaction to Megamind when she finds out that he gave Hal super powers.
- Metro Man intentionally abandoning the city that respected him and leaving it in the hands of a supervillain.
- Who Dares Challenge Megamind?
- Wide-Eyed Idealist: According to Titan, Roxie believes that there is at least some good in everyone, in spite of her generally sarcastic attitude.
- Straw Man Has a Point: To be fair, Titan is fairly accurate when he views Roxie's attempts to appeal to his better nature as a desperate ploy.
- With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: One explanation for Titan's descent to evil.
- Worthy Opponent: Metro Man and Megamind view each other this way.
- Wrong Genre Savvy: A socially-awkward kid with an unattainable crush gains superpowers. Unfortunately, Hal Stewart must have seen the movie Spider Man one too many times and does not realize what is really going to happen until Roxie spells it out for him.
- Xanatos Gambit: Megamind's entire campaign against Metro Man. He explicitly says in the comic prequel that he considers every lost battle as simply an opportunity to study his potential weaknesses. He explicitly states when fighting Titan that every defeat is an opportunity to learn and do better next time.
- Also, the "observatory" plan counts on Megamind knowing that Roxanne would give away his position, and pretending to act shocked at the reveal.
- X Meets Y: The Incredibles meets Dr. Horrible, with just a hint of Saturday Night Live thrown into the mix.
- Yandere: Titan to Roxanne.
- Your Costume Needs Work: As Megamind flees the Metro Man museum, which he is trying to blow up, he runs into Bernard, who starts deriding him for his "tasteless costume".
- complete with wedding photographer
- (through a sort of justified Deadly Change-of-Heart followed by the revelation that he can't go back to the way it was - the rules have changed)
- I'm not really sure which Woobie is right for him, but this one seems most likely aside from those puppy-dog eyes and "Did you ever look back?"
- and more could be said about his battle with himself when he's trying not to expose the deception to Roxanne