Ron the Death Eater

    Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.
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    "Ok, Ron is acting really dumb...but it’s my story. Ron is my least fave character and I make him how I want him to be dumb cuz he is. Sorry for the inconvenience."

    Author's note in a fic that is no longer available

    The result of shoehorning a good canon character into being a villain or making a villain significantly more evil than in canon is Ron the Death Eater, the inverse of Draco in Leather Pants.

    This can be seen as a kind of deliberate Flanderization—Often, in creating Ron the Death Eater, a fanfic writer spins his canonical (non-evil) actions into evil acts, and every possible negative trait of the character is exaggerated until they become a Complete Monster. A measure of ruthlessness becomes complete and utter sociopathy, a tendency towards holding grudges becomes an obsessive hatred of anything they dislike, slight denseness becomes raging stupidity, et cetera.

    This is often the result of a Draco in Leather Pants, but it doesn't have to be—some characters inspire this sort of hatred on their own, either by their canon merits or by being a romantic rival that interferes with the writer's One True Pairing, especially if the subject is part of an Official Couple.

    In other cases, it seems like the target character, regardless of their original characterization, will simply default to one of two stock personalities, based entirely on their gender. Basically, male characters end up as drunken rapist assholes while female characters end up as manipulative vindictive bitches.

    The fic may also have other characters who are canonically friends of the victim act as though he or she has always been an object of justified loathing, rather than going the "shocked at betrayal" approach. Or, even if these characters end up siding with the Draco in Leather Pants, they are subject to some Ron The Death Eater-ness themselves by way of "I was stupid to love him and not you".

    In a number of cases however this is deliberately invoked by fans who think a good character looks better evil. This is quite common in doujinshi where an otherwise normal male character suddenly becomes a psychotic rapist or where a female character becomes a sadistic bitch who gets other girls raped.

    Named for the tendency in Harry Potter fanfics where Draco turns good and hooks up with Hermione to have Ron—who in Canon is a decent, upstanding sort of fellow firmly on the side of good (he might be occasionally crass, boorish, or foolish but his ethics are firmly sound) who happens to have a long-standing enmity with Draco—lose his mind and, often, join Lord Voldemort just for a chance at killing the sainted Malfoy.

    A Sub-Trope of Demonization.

    Compare Die for Our Ship (which is a major cause of this trope), Historical Villain Upgrade, and Adaptational Villainy.

    Contrast Draco in Leather Pants.

    And last but not least, fandoms that have so many examples of this that they needed to be moved to their own pages:

    Examples (sorted by the original canons' media):

    Anime and Manga


    Souichiro: Pray that there's a Taco Bell in Hell!


    Comic Books

    • Parodied in The Unwritten, about a son of a writer who got famous after creating a series of novels very similar to Harry Potter. The first two start with fragments of those books, and the third with a fragment of Frankenstein. The first page of the fourth issue shows Harry's counterpart slaughtering Ron's and Hermione's counterparts in a really terrible way, only to have it turn out on the next page that it's a Dark Fic.
    • The entire League of Extraordinary Gentlemen seems to be based around this trope. Mina, who at the end of Dracula was happily married to Jonathan Harker divorces her husband and presumably abandons her child prior to the beginning of the first volume. The upstanding Great White Hunter Alan Quatermain is an opium addict. Perhaps the most extreme example is from Black Dossier. The comic features a violent, sociopathic, date rapist version of James Bond in a Lawyer-Friendly Cameo. Jonathan Harker goes from a loving and fiercely devoted husband to dumping his wife for being "soiled goods'.
    • Tron: Ghost in the Machine (based off the Alternate Continuity of Tron 2.0) depicts Alan as somewhat callous, work-driven, and harsh towards his son. Of course, his circumstances in the 2.0 timeline suck worse than his circumstances in the Tron: Legacy one - Flynn still vanishes, but he's been relegated to a lab instead of the boardroom, and while Lora's alive in Legacy, she died in 2.0 - but the depiction really goes off the rails when he was shown murdering his wife in a jealous rage. Granted, it was just an attempt to Mind Rape Jet, but...
    • X-Men fandom sees a lot of this. Those most often targeted seem to be Jean Grey, Cyclops, and Professor X. Oddly enough, the character in X-Men with the largest Hatedom, Wolverine, doesn't get it nearly as much... likely because Wolverine's haters also tend to be the sorts that hate on fanfiction.



    • Ron Weasley from Harry Potter and other characters get it so hard, it gets its own subpage. Please add any more examples there.
    • This trope is Older Than Steam: Greek heroes from The Iliad and The Odyssey often become outright villainous in Roman works (the Romans imagined themselves to be of Trojan origin):
      • Vergil and Ovid both portray the Greek heroes at Troy mostly in terms of their post-victory atrocities.
      • Medieval European writers usually knew Latin but not Greek; as a result, they tended to inherit the Romans' bias. Dante places Odysseus in the eighth circle of Hell, and both Chaucer and Shakespeare are merciless to the Greeks in their versions of Troilus and Cressida.
    • Greg Hefley from the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series can be selfish and manipulative at times, and doesn't like hanging out with the local weird kid. Or in other words, he's your basic middle school-aged boy. And yet, a surprising amount of readers do their damnedest to ignore his many good traits and twist him into being this unfeeling sociopath to the point that a number of pages on TV Tropes used to shoehorn in mentions of him being an example of that trope.

    Live-Action TV

    • The Friends fic Somebody Save Me (found here) has portrayed Richard—a perfectly nice, well-loved guy whose relationship with Monica only broke up because of May–December Romance problems—as a drunken, selfish, physically and emotionally abusive rapist who does not care for Monica at all, so that Chandler can be there to protect and rescue Monica from her evil abuser. Why an OC abusive boyfriend could not have been made up, seeing as Monica dates dozens of men throughout the run of Friends, is a mystery. It's not the only one of its kind either.
    • One particularly bad and extremely unsettling NSFW Degrassi fic called The Junkie Journals turns Riley Stavros into a rapist, MindRapeist, gay basher, drug addict, Jerk Jock, Villain Sue, and Karma Houdini. He's such a Complete Monster that people walk away from the story feeling like they've come across the seedy underbelly of the world. All of this without warning or explanation. The main character of the story is also rescued by Peter but it's a mystery why the so-called "author" couldn't just make up an OC who's a Complete Monster instead of having to defile Riley's character.
    • Allecto's controversial critiques of Firefly are something of an extreme example of this; the actions of several of the characters (and especially the white male ones) are often twisted in order to fit an extreme feminist reading, thus unfairly painting them as evil.


    Video Games

    • Nerf Now did this to The Legend of Zelda series star Link, and made it look easy. In the comments, readers are seen not only developing the theme, but approving "Hey! Listen!" in more than one way.
      • A later comic did the same thing to Megaman and Dr. Light.
    • Touhou:
      • The Chinese Touhou doujin Yuyuko's Yukkuri Farm goes to the extreme and has Yuyuko as a literal baby eater (warning: link is to Danbooru and has NSFW ads).
      • A dark fic author by the name of Stripe Pattern believes Byakuren, one of the unambiguously good characters in Touhou, is a psychotic monster in the doujin Love and Peace.
      • Portraying Sanae as a sadistic youkai tormentor/killer is a big enough trend among doujin artists and in fanarts to have its dedicated pool on Danbooru. To no one's surprise, Kogasa is her main victim, and Sanae's awful treatment of her in Undefined Fantastic Object is probably what started the trend.
      • Mei Miya's murder mysteries inevitably turn some neutral or nice characters into villains (spoilers marked if anyone wants to read them):
        • Murder of the Shining Sun applies some Fridge Horror to Koishi Komeiji's unconscious actions by making them an equivalent of Hollywood schizophrenia: at any moment, she can have an unconscious impulse to kill someone, no one can predict it, not even herself, and the unconscious nature of the act makes it impossible to hold her accountable for it.
        • In Seasons Lit with Gold, Kanako Sayaka murders Minoriko Aki in cold blood because humans would worship Minoriko in times of harvest instead of the Moriya shrine, then Sanae brings her lifeless body back to Shizuha Aki as a warning while making incredibly morbid comments about gods leaving cold and heavy corpses behind them just like humans do. Poor Shizuha is so heartbroken and terrified beyond belief that she commits suicide.
    • Spyro the Dragon: Ember was included in The Legend of Spyro: A New Dawn mainly to defy this trope because the author was sick and tired of her getting this treatment by the fandom. Quite a few readers agreed and she ended up being the Ensemble Darkhorse.
    • This artist from Deviant ART writes the eponymous protagonist of Mega Man this way simply because he destroys their favorite robot master(s).
    • Endlessly done to Luigi in Super Mario World ROM hacks. Some examples:
      • SMW YEAHHH has him as the true villain and final boss
      • Brutal Mario looks to be the same, as implied by this early final overworld map. Note him riding in the clown car and the giant neon letters on the castle. Also, it does the same to Peach (who's shown to be working with Luigi, and can be seen as an unfinished boss in game) and Mario (who's apparently trying to take back the kingdom he ran as a dictatorship beforehand).
      • S Mario has this, according to the translation raocow is working with. -->Luigi: "Brother, I've become a wielder of Black Magic."
    • Thanks to Edelgard from Fire Emblem: Three Houses being one of gaming's biggest examples of Draco in Leather Pants, it's only natural that the main three faction leaders opposing her are all given this treatment to some extent.
      • Poor Rhea is easily the biggest victim of this trope. Being the shady archbishop of a similarly dubious-looking church in a genre where evil churches are the norm means that she was playing with a stacked deck from the onset, but even when her many good traits become apparent, many fans choose to ignore them and make her out to be as bad, if not worse than Those Who Slither in the Dark.
        • A recurring problem in the game is that many characters' lives are ruined, or at the very least, plagued by issues regarding their Crests, special powers carried down through their bloodline. Blame is often laid at Rhea's feet for "perpetuating the Crest System" despite the Church's doctrine disavowing Crest-based elitism, and the people actually responsible for antagonizing victims of "the Crest System" are quietly ignored when Rhea isn't being blamed alongside them.
        • Others claim that Rhea is bigoted and intolerant towards foreigners and non-believers, and in turn blatantly ignore the foreigners and non-believers Rhea has employed at the church (such as Shamir and Cyril) and allows to attend Garreg Mach Monastery's Officers Academy (such as Petra and Dedue). In fact, the Church of Seiros stands against intolerance, and one of the reasons why the radical Western Church hates them is because they aren't xenophobic bigots. Some of this stems from Claude's misconception that the Church of Seiros preaches xenophobic doctrine, but even that ignores the fact that it's a misconception and that Claude realizes that he's wrong about the church and Rhea over the course of the Golden Deer/Verdant Wind route.
        • Speaking of the Western Church, Rhea catches flack for being "unreasonable and tyrannical" when she orders the execution of multiple Western Church members at the end of Chapter 4, as well as sending the Knights of Seiros to kill Lord Lonato when he's rebelling in Chapter 2. While she does act creepy and fanatical, neither Lonato nor the Western Church are blameless victims. Both lead armed insurrections that would get plenty of innocent people caught in the crossfire, with said insurrections being attempts on Rhea's life. Rhea was content to live and let live before they tried to murder her and anyone else that got in their way.
        • Rhea's experiments that resulted in the creation of Sothis' failed vessels are also used as points against her, and paint her as being no better than Those Who Slither in terms of inhumane experimentation... except Rhea's experiments weren't inhumane. She created artificial homunculi to serve as new vessels for Sothis, but when they failed to carry out their purpose, she was content to let them live out their lives in peace and in the case of Sitri, even marry. Similarly, her giving Byleth Sothis' crest stone was at Sitri's behest, and a necessary operation to save their life thanks to being stillborn.
        • While Rhea does cross the Moral Event Horizon by ordering the burning of a populated city in the Crimson Flower route, she's still a far more heroic character in 3/4 routes, and even here only crosses the line as a result of having every single Trauma Button pressed simultaneously by Edelgard and Byleth, forcing her to relive the genocide of her people and turning her nearly insane as a result. This doesn't stop fans from declaring that her Crimson Flower-exclusive homicidal insanity is her true self no matter the route.
        • Rhea's motivations are often boiled down to being a selfish and childish desire to see her mother again. And while a desire to bring back her mother is partially the truth, the other part conveniently left out is that Rhea doesn't believe peace and prosperity can truly come to Fodlan unless Sothis returns, giving her plenty of non-selfish motivation to bring back Fodlan's goddess.
      • Dimitri is an earnest, humble, and kind-hearted man with a dark side, but Edelgard fans often treat his descent into violent insanity during the timeskip as the mask slipping off and showing Dimitri at his basest, true self. Never mind that it stems from the trauma of witnessing his father's violent murder and the near-genocide of the people of Duscur, never mind that he's consumed with self-hatred for the violent path he walks, never mind that he ultimately comes back from the brink and spends a lifetime atoning for the things he's done, it's far easier to label him a crazed animal that needs to be put down and call it a day.
        • Crimson Flower is the route where he's hit the hardest with this, despite the fact that he's perfectly sane and a clear-cut Hero Antagonist defending his homeland from Edelgard's invasion there. When he rightfully calls out Edelgard's bullheaded commitment to murder and violent conquest, she essentially pulls an anemic "No U!" on him by condemning him for "reconquering and killing in retalation", a sentiment her fans tend to agree with wholeheartedly.
      • While he avoided this treatment at first, even Claude would fall victim to demonization at the hands of hardcore Edelgard fans. He's easily the most morally squeaky-clean of the four faction leaders to the point of being an outright good guy despite his shady presentation, but his detractors claim that he's exactly as untrustworthy as his façade would indicate and claim that he's every bit the would-be conqueror Edelgard is despite her methods being the antithesis of his own. Some of it stems from a cheeky remark about how he wanted to conquer Fodlan if defeated and spared after his boss fight in Crimson Flower, but it ignores the fact that he's clearly shooting the bull and willingly pandering to Edelgard's perception of him given how his portrayal in other routes don't even hint at a genuine desire to conquer Fodlan, but rather peacefully foster relationships between it and Almyra while putting an end to the mutual xenophobia between both countries.

    Web Comics

    • Bro Strider, Dave's badass older brother in Homestuck, is subjected to this by fans who take his over the top Training from Hell of Dave too seriously and treat their relationship as down right abusive in one way or another, nevermind there is little to no evidence of this and Dave obviously loves and respects his older brother. A good example of this attitude is in Out of His Depth A Dave/Tavros fic, where he is both abusive and a homophobic jerkass who's only real purpose in the fic is to provide a reason for Dave to be reluctant to admit his feelings and someone for Tavros to stand up to. This is a bit Hilarious in Hindsight as the fic was written before the Alpha Universe versions of the kids' Guardians were introduced and Bro's own counterpart Dirk is revealed to be both a pretty nice guy and, more importantly, openly gay.

    Web Original

    • The "Unexpectedly Evil" pool on Danbooru is dedicated to depictions of characters considered non-evil both in their canon and by most fans, acting out of character in a truly shocking and despicable way, generally by intentionally harming another character who did nothing to deserve it.

    Western Animation

    • In the Teen Titans fic Intertwining Hearts (found here), Robin behaves like a jerk when Starfire tells him she wants to include Raven in their relationship (normal for Tamaran). So instead, Starfire and Raven include Beast Boy in their relationship. Robin is not that evil, however (though he does briefly attempt breaking up Starfire and Raven), and the fic ends with him having an emotional breakdown.
    • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic:
    • Avatar: The Last Airbender:
      • Infamous example: Mai in the fan comic How I Became Yours. Because how dare the woman be angry that her husband cheated on her and had a kid with another woman, clearly she deserves to be killed.
      • Aang in this Toph/Katara fic, Do you hate me?, is twisted into a swearing, angry jackass who throws rocks and hurts Toph on purpose. Granted, this does take place during "The Desert" and he was angry at Toph for not saving Appa, but he'd never go out of his way to hurt her. He, in fact, became upset after intentionally hurting creatures that are a combination of buzzards and wasps.
      • Embers. Katara's season three rage over Zuko getting Aang mostly-killed after she'd started to trust him is transposed into a season one homicidal fury that Zuko is of the Fire Nation and has the nerve to be a better healer than she is. Since then, Katara has been publicly humiliated by the amazing Zuko in three or four different ways and has been reclaimed as an acceptable being, but is being used as a prop in the new goal of showing that Aang is a horrible, selfish boy who is deeply intolerant of everything that doesn't fit into his childhood culture (which by the way is secretly evil).
    • X-Men: Evolution:
      • Not Just a Sleepover (found here) depicts Cyclops aka Scott Summers as a humorless, oppressing, and incompetent would-be dictator who just hates the Brotherhood for no reason at all.
      • Tsunami (found here) depicts Jean Grey as a cliché Alpha Bitch, with everyone vocally denouncing her as a two-faced bitch, all while her powers are degraded to Pre-Claramont Comics!Jean level in order to "fix" how "perfect" she is.
      • In Diamonds Are a Fuzzy Dude's Best Friend (here [dead link]) Scott and Jean get this treatment.
      • Logan vs Lance (here) has Lance portrayed as a cheating, abusive, Bastard Boyfriend to motivate the X-Men to beat him up so Kitty would have a reason to break up with him.