|“||Though some may call it revenge, I prefer to think of it as justice... over single-minded scientists and corrupt politicians.||„|
|~ Clive Dove|
Vigilantes are those who take matters of the law into their own hands and punish Criminals (or at least people they perceive as Criminals), often going against more legal authorities to do so. Although Vigilantes are romanticized in fiction (such as with Batman, Robin Hood, etc.) in reality they tend to be near-remorseless and efficiently brutal killers.
These Villains normally think they are doing the world at large a favor by "taking care" of crime or other things that displease them, usually through the application of lethal force (often believing they are "taking out the trash"). Most Vigilantes view themselves as better people and get annoyed or even furious at a Hero's attempts to stop them. When revealing darker shades of themselves, they can even become Game Changers or Contradictions.
This is what makes them a source of trouble for Heroes who often see dark mirrors of what they could have become; and by ignoring justice systems a Vigilante ends up killing wrongfully or improperly convicted people (usually Scapegoats or Pawns) and thus take innocent lives.
Vigilantes can be motivated by the following reasons and many more:
- Beliefs: Some vigilantes are motivated by the belief that the justice system is broken or rigged so it will not punish criminals enough, thus leading them to believe they must take "justice" (maybe literally) into their own hands.
- Revenge: Vigilantes are most commonly motivated by factors such as pain and retribution. Some target Criminals who wronged them personally and were not caught, seeking them out as revenge. Others can be motivated by getting back at people who weren't even Criminals at the start such as people who simply bullied or tormented them or someone close. A good example of this is Scar from Fullmetal Alchemist.
- Delusions/Mental Sickness: Vigilantes can be spurred into a killing spree by mental impairments such as schizophrenia or obsessive-compulsive disorders. This can cause irrational behaviors and make them believe people are doing bad things when they're not.
- Impartial Corrections/Righteous Anarchy: Vigilantes are also able to take the shape of Revolutionists who are justified to an extent in their actions, though they are not entirely right to begin with.
For sake of this particular wiki, this page only features vigilantes who have little-to-no heroic traits. If you want more heroic examples of them see here.
Vigilantes cannot be Purely Evil as they are part of anti-villainous alignments whose goals are at least even remotely noble. Their intentions are good and they seek to bring justice, but Pure Evil villains that seek their own twisted or hypocritical forms of it should go under Delusional and/or Lawful Evil instead of this category. (e.g. Akainu)
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