For example, look at the ‘Wicked Witch of the West’ and her fall from power. A villain is defined as “The person or thing responsible for specified trouble, harm, or damage; also has great power and influence”. An archetypal villain wants power at any price, and will stop at nothing to get what he/she desires. This is true of many villains, especially one in particular: Adolf Hitler. Hitler had enough power and influences to convince an entire country to turn against an entire ethnic group. He stopped at nothing to achieve his goals, and when one plan didn’t work, he moved onto another one. He was ruthless, and went by his own moral code.
He truly believed that what he was doing was the “right thing”. He is the epitome of an archetypal villain. Do you notice that girl helping up that young man? That’s me, Essowe Telou. I do community service every month at Ronald McDonald’s soup kitchen and am usually seen smiling. I am… your archetypal villain. Granted I doesn’t possess “scaly green skin, a crooked wart-spotted nose and a slender black hat paired with a classic evil cackle”, but I do contain five characteristics, that is often over looked in villains, which make me your perfect nemesis. I am intelligent, and effective villains are intelligent.
That doesn’t mean, per say, that I am intellectually gifted, though I am, but I often avoid making stupid mistakes. I make sure that I am always two steps ahead at all times. In addition to being intelligent, I am also determined. This is what separates the great villains from the “lesser baddies”. A truly formidable villain is possessed by an unstoppable drive to achieve their goal. Just as nothing could stop Sauron of Mordor from dominating the Middle Earth, nothing will stop me from going to college. Even my own physical and emotional health is only considered a minor setback. Under no circumstances will I ever cease.
Furthermore, I am immoral. Of course, I have a sense of what’s wrong and right, but I “subscribe to my own moral code”. I know that I should stop when my body is aching and my eyes are rimmed with tears but in my eyes, it’s for the best. “No pain, no gain”. Above all, I am staggeringly powerful. My power lies within the resources that are at my disposal, which include, my teacher, school, and information that I have been given. The only difference between me and a villain: A villain usually fails at the end, but failure isn’t an option for me. I am Essowe Telou, and I am your archetypal villain.
We have created a prototype for every character and we are unable to break them, because if we do than they would be unidentifiable in our eyes. The possibility that we might not be able to tell the hero from the villain is ludicrous. How could we not when we have given them set characteristics that they must follow to be considered a hero or a nemesis? In retrospective, I reiterate my opening statement on archetypes “The archetype is a symbolic formula which always begins to function when there are no conscious ideas present, or when conscious ideas are inhibited for internal or external reasons. ” Works Cited The Lion King