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How does Voldemort compare with other villains?



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  #41  
Old January 31st, 2007, 7:39 am
Valkonde  Male.gif Valkonde is offline
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Re: How does Voldemort compare with other villains?

Well, villians need weaknesses. Not only to give people hope (they're not going to read a novel where evil triumphs), but because most villians are human. We want to demonize them, and they want to be demonized, but for different reasons. We demonize because it makes them less human when they're defeated. They want to be demonized because it makes them less human and therefore much harder to defeat.

Everyone has weaknesses. Villians overlook theirs out of denial of a weakness, they don't see a weakness, or they're distracted by their plans of world domination. Those are hard to pull of, by the way.


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  #42  
Old February 8th, 2007, 4:09 am
magicalmysteryg  Female.gif magicalmysteryg is offline
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Re: How does Voldemort compare with other villains?

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Originally Posted by kluvhp View Post
I sort of relate Voldemort more with Adolf Hitler more than any fictional antagonists. One of Hitler's parents was Jewish (compared with Voldemort's muggle father), and he strived to eliminate whole sections of people: Jews, gays, people who opposed him, ect. This can be related to Voldemort by saying he wanted to destroy muggleborns, 'blood-traitors', people who opposed him, etc. Of course, now we've been introduced to a whole new aspect of Voldemort: His quest for immortality. I don't know of any fragment of Hitler we can relate this to, but who knows?
as hitler commited suicide, probably, that doesnt seem to be high on his list. but he did want his life's work to give him a metaphorical immortality, and in fact some have suggested that hitler is grindenwald.

unlike sauron, voldemort is scarier in the flesh. we never see sauron that way, and voldemort, as a vapor, is less threatening.

i agree that any good fictional villan must have a weakness, or more importantly, we must see that they are human. They cant be pure evil, they need to be more complex. i think that voldemort needs more humanity, in that sense--we need to know what can drive someone to be so mean, to be capable of such cruelty at eleven years old. definitly, in my opinon, a weak spot in the series. in star wars, for example, it was understandable how anakin became vader. i know LV was never good, but he seems to have been born pure evil, which seems harder to beleive. I realize that growing up unloved and an orphan cant be fun...but so was harry, and he hadnt hung a rabbit by the time he was ten.


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  #43  
Old February 8th, 2007, 9:46 am
Valkonde  Male.gif Valkonde is offline
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Re: How does Voldemort compare with other villains?

Ah, but Harry is constantly told by Dumbledore that he's very unusual.

Harry's early life was full of neglect and abuse, yet he turned out normal. Which is odd.
Tom Riddle's early life was full of neglect of sorts; he wasn't mistreated at the orphanage, but he was treated like every other orphan there. And he turned out to be a complete sociopath. Which is also odd.

I don't believe Riddle was born evil; I don't think anyone is born evil. But I think that he was perhaps predispositioned towards being a bit insane (from the Gaunts) and/or arrogant (from the Riddles). So as his powers grew, and he gained control of them, he took an active stand to not fade into obscurity by any means necessary. Sometimes you have to take drastic measures to stand out.


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  #44  
Old February 8th, 2007, 10:04 am
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Re: How does Voldemort compare with other villains?

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Originally Posted by magicalmysteryg View Post
i agree that any good fictional villan must have a weakness, or more importantly, we must see that they are human. They cant be pure evil, they need to be more complex. i think that voldemort needs more humanity, in that sense--we need to know what can drive someone to be so mean, to be capable of such cruelty at eleven years old. definitly, in my opinon, a weak spot in the series. in star wars, for example, it was understandable how anakin became vader. i know LV was never good, but he seems to have been born pure evil, which seems harder to beleive. I realize that growing up unloved and an orphan cant be fun...but so was harry, and he hadnt hung a rabbit by the time he was ten.
Voldemort wasn't born evil, he was born loveless because he had never been loved. That's a social statement. Like Tolkien feared modern society with all its machines, JKR wrote about love as the greatest power since our society grows indifferent towards the weak and unprivileged. Children do not know what right and wrong is, they need to learn it.

Voldemort is a psychopath and something went obviously wrong in his childhood. The lack of love is certainly part of the reason he is a mass murderer now. However, the more we learn about him, the less scary he becomes for me. If there is a brutal crime in the media we tend to describe it as inhuman and monstrous. Of course, this means that it is only too human but as soon as we understand the motivation behind the crime - a cruel childhood, loss of loved ones at an early age, mistreatment and abuse - the villain is still bad but not monstrous anymore. An analysed evil is not as frightening as an evil we cannot grasp and understand. Voldemort was scarier when he was inhuman. As to Darth Vader, one could pity him in Return of the Jedi already. The background story - a tragic love story - did not make him scary at all.


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  #45  
Old February 8th, 2007, 10:15 am
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Re: How does Voldemort compare with other villains?

he's just about the same really. the only exception is that rowling showed us how the wires work in voldys head and other villians we know only of their actions,not what made them do what they did nor what they're striving for.


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  #46  
Old February 11th, 2007, 4:03 am
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Re: How does Voldemort compare with other villains?

Where Harry and Voldemort's early lives were different is that Harry spent the first 15 months of his life with parents who loved him (and each other) very much. Voldemort didn't even have that. I'm no expert on babies, but I think that how they are treated does affect how they will be later in life.


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  #47  
Old February 11th, 2007, 5:09 am
MioneBookworm  Female.gif MioneBookworm is offline
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Re: How does Voldemort compare with other villains?

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However, the more we learn about him, the less scary he becomes for me. If there is a brutal crime in the media we tend to describe it as inhuman and monstrous. Of course, this means that it is only too human but as soon as we understand the motivation behind the crime - a cruel childhood, loss of loved ones at an early age, mistreatment and abuse - the villain is still bad but not monstrous anymore. An analysed evil is not as frightening as an evil we cannot grasp and understand. Voldemort was scarier when he was inhuman. As to Darth Vader, one could pity him in Return of the Jedi already. The background story - a tragic love story - did not make him scary at all.
I agree. When you see their background, villains do become less scary. Voldemort has always been inhuman in the Harry Potter series. Of course, it is due to facts that might make us more sympathetic towards him, but that doesn't mean he's less evil all the same. I think that what was most scary about Voldemort at first, to us as much as to most of the magical community, was the fact that no one quite knew where he had come from, and even in his physical appearance as much as his deeds he was very far from human. Villains in Harry Potter itself like, say, Bellatrix, who are really nothing short of being as cruel as Voldemort, still inspire an amount of respect and fear that's nothing compared as the one people hold for Voldemort himself.

Darth Vader, though cruel, can't be compared to Voldemort. Firstly, because he redeemed himself: I doubt Voldemort will ever do so, since I believe love is required to redeem. There has to be a reason for it that's deep enough, and love is one of the few things that can go as deep as redeeming villains of that height.

Secondly, the Star Wars series treats love in a completely different way as the Harry Potter series. Love is, in a way - according to Master Yoda's way of relating things -, the path to the Dark Side of the Force(one of the many). Jedis can't love, because love is the path to jealousy, jealousy conducts to fury, and fury to the dark side. Siths, on the other hand, are driven by their feelings. Now, I'm not sure it was exactly like this, but something of the sort all the same. It shows, in a way, that love is a beautiful but also a very dangerous thing. It's probably the only thing that could lead you both in and out of the Dark Side of the force, as happened to Vader.

In Harry Potter, however, we haven't yet seen a character that is driven to the Dark Side because of love. Not even to save loved ones - it seems that the Dark side in Harry Potter represents quite the opposite, and sort of lacks love. Voldemort is the essence of the Dark Side in Harry Potter, and therefore he can't love, which clearly tells him apart from Vader.

That is, in a way, why I believe that Voldemort is quite more effective as a villain in comparison to Vader. Love is too unpredictable to construct a good villain, since you don't know which turns it's going to take. It sort of makes characters more pliable, if you know what I mean, and a really evil villain can't doubt on which side to take.

Mind you, Vader is still an excellent villain and gives great plot to the Star Wars series, but Voldemort is more appropriate for Harry Potter. A tougher and harder to destroy villain than Vader, he is just the product of the lack of love. And yes, as you say, there is clearly something wrong with him. It's just a matter of tastes, I just prefer that kind of villain.


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  #48  
Old February 12th, 2007, 6:59 pm
Master_Auror_X  Male.gif Master_Auror_X is offline
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Re: How does Voldemort compare with other villains?

Voldemort reminds me of the Emperor in Star Wars.They have a lot in common. Evil, Weird Face, and their mission is too take over the world. (for Voldemort the Magical word.)


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  #49  
Old February 12th, 2007, 11:20 pm
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Re: How does Voldemort compare with other villains?

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Voldemort reminds me of the Emperor in Star Wars.They have a lot in common. Evil, Weird Face, and their mission is too take over the world. (for Voldemort the Magical word.)
Master_Auror_X!
A lot of people seem to want to compare Voldemort to Darth Vader, but I agree that there's more of a comparison to the Emperor. It's very interesting that their evil actions both have a direct reflection on their outward appearance. They are also both masters at sowing discord among their enemies so that their claim of power is easier.


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  #50  
Old February 25th, 2007, 3:45 am
JimmyPotter  Male.gif JimmyPotter is offline
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Re: How does Voldemort compare with other villains?

Voldemort and the Emperor also both created their ultimate destroyer. We know about how Voldemort marked Harry. The Emperor made Darth Vader into a powerful Sith without fully driving the good from him. The good resurfaced when Darth Vader killed the Emperor to save Luke. In this case love was used to defeat the Dark Side. So perhaps in Star Wars love is a double-edged sword.


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  #51  
Old February 25th, 2007, 2:43 pm
MinaMurray  Female.gif MinaMurray is offline
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Re: How does Voldemort compare with other villains?

Personally, i link Voldemort to Hitler. and so the Mangemorts to the SS, the mudbloods to Jews, Gipsies,etc.

I don't link him to any Darth-something at all.
JK, i believe, inspired herself to reality, to historical facts, not to other fictions.


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  #52  
Old March 3rd, 2007, 10:59 am
Night_Seeker  Male.gif Night_Seeker is offline
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Re: How does Voldemort compare with other villains?

Lord Voldemort is a very unique character in that, everything that he does, essentially is driven by fear. Fear of weakness and most of all fear of death. It adds depth to his character because it explains why he wants to control the world. He fears change, he fears difference. He fears being powerless. It all goes back to his being abadened by his mother and father. One by death, the other by muggle minded hatred of magic. These two things drive him to beleive what he does. Voldemort is deep down a lost and insecure child with the talents and skills of a powerful dark wizard, which makes him dangerous. He is quite mental, and thats what makes him unique to other villians. We're not even sure if he is truly aware of what he is doing. Voldemort seems to act on survival isntincts gone overboard.

This also makes him very human. Because who dosen't fear death?

His saddism comes from his comfort at watching others endure the same torment he is outwardly terrified of, which covers his fear and insecurity.

Darth Vader was driven to the dark side of the force, by fear of not death for himself but of losing those he loves. Love becomes a drug, if tainted with obsession, but true love never dies, which I think is one of the themes of SW.

While in the Potteverse, things aren't as complex. There are two distcint elements: Fear and Love. Fear=Bad. Love=Good.

I don't think Voldemort can be compared to Palpatine either. Palpatine is more controlled and stable than Voldemort. Voldemort is cunning and devious but dosen't possess the level of deception Palpatine does. Voldemort is too insane and is prone to mood swings, while the Emperer is always in control of himself.

Now as for comparing Voldemort to Sauron...Saruon is more of a fallen angel along the lines of Satan. Voldemort is just an average human with magic powers gone bad, more along the lines of Sauruman the White.

As for if Voldermort holds up against the other villains of modern times, yes you can say that. One thing Voldemort has that the other don't, is he's more reconizable as an everyday person. Palpatine is like Hitler, Sauron is like Satan, Voldemort is like the nice man down the street who turns out to be a serial killer, so he's more closely associated with the general population, and not just on an epic spirtual or political level.

Voldemort fits the mold perfectly as the ultimate villain of the Harry Potter world.



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  #53  
Old March 3rd, 2007, 12:32 pm
Xenophanes  Undisclosed.gif Xenophanes is offline
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Re: How does Voldemort compare with other villains?

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Originally Posted by Night_Seeker View Post
Lord Voldemort is a very unique character in that, everything that he does, essentially is driven by fear. Fear of weakness and most of all fear of death. It adds depth to his character because it explains why he wants to control the world. He fears change, he fears difference. He fears being powerless. It all goes back to his being abadened by his mother and father. One by death, the other by muggle minded hatred of magic. These two things drive him to beleive what he does. Voldemort is deep down a lost and insecure child with the talents and skills of a powerful dark wizard, which makes him dangerous. He is quite mental, and thats what makes him unique to other villians. We're not even sure if he is truly aware of what he is doing. Voldemort seems to act on survival isntincts gone overboard.

This also makes him very human. Because who dosen't fear death?

His saddism comes from his comfort at watching others endure the same torment he is outwardly terrified of, which covers his fear and insecurity.
Excellent point. One of the things I like most about Voldemort is the fact that his motivations are exactly the same as our own, except he's a little more...er...homicidal in his methods . He's afraid of death. He's afraid of dying. He's afraid of being ordinary, of being mundane and forgotten. He's afraid (as Dumbledore so astutely points out) of the people he persecutes, and so he persecutes them more. I also think he's afraid of anyone who has the courage to do what is right, no matter the costs to themselves (something which he is incapable of understanding). I suspect the reason he feared Dumbledore was not because he was the greatest wizard in the world, but because he was so unnaturally good (a certain dark-haired teenager may also provoke this reaction).


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  #54  
Old March 3rd, 2007, 12:50 pm
Night_Seeker  Male.gif Night_Seeker is offline
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Re: How does Voldemort compare with other villains?

Yes, I agree with you. I never thoght Dumbledore was the only wizard Voldemort ever feared ONLY because of his power.


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  #55  
Old April 30th, 2007, 10:11 am
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Re: How does Voldemort compare with other villains?

Voldemort is not that unique of a villain. He seems to be largely modeled after Hitler, but his desire for power and fame are seen with all villains in the arts and history. His methods, although selfish, do not seem to be very ruthless. Even the dementors are capable of making people suffer worse than Voldemort could ever achieve, and therefore are arguably more evil than Voldemort.

What I believe makes him unique though is his quest for immortality. He was born a man, but desires to become a god through the destruction of his soul. The necessary devices that allow him to do this are provided through the wizarding world, which few villains would have access to, sans those from fantasy worlds. This sets him apart, as few villains have managed to tie their soul permanetly to the physical realm. Perhaps he was simply born into the right world, as such immortality would be impossible in a world such as the one Star Wars took place in.


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  #56  
Old April 30th, 2007, 12:07 pm
Hanover_Fist  Undisclosed.gif Hanover_Fist is offline
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Re: How does Voldemort compare with other villains?

Comparisons to Vader initially look good. A gifted orphan is trained by the most powerful wizards (I wonder if he played any role in helping Dumbledore defeat Grindelwald), only to see him betray them to join the Dark Side. Still, he has the lust for power and lack of love that make him more comparable to Palpatine.

For whoever said he was comparable to Orochimaru-bravo to you! This is to me the strongest comparison you could make. Both were trained by the most powerful of their day (Sarutobi in Orochimaru's case, Dumbledore in Voldemort's), but gained insatiable lust for power. Each left in a fury when denied a position that would link them to that power (Voldemort was refused the DADA position; Orochimaru was rejected as Sarutobi's successor as Hokage), and swore revenge on the institution. Each immersed themselves in learning powerful magic/jutsu, and both have the power to control snakes. Each has built up a following, but the minions follow more out of fear than respect. They each have a "favorite", a right-hand man (for Voldemort, it's Wormtail; for Orochimaru, it's Kabuto), but even they are kept at a distance. Each brings about the death of their former mentor (even if Snape is good, it was Voldemort's influence that led him to protect Draco). Each has the potential to suffer worse than their death. Voldemort would likely suffer more if he were to lose his powers and be no different than a Muggle. Orochimaru had his arms paralyzed, rendering him unable to ever perform another jutsu ever again. Look for the HP/Naruto thread in the Pensieve for a more detailed comparison (coming shortly, hopefully).

Voldemort's past can also be compared to Gaara's (another Naruto villain), as far as the lack of love that led them to care about and fight only for themselves.

For those of you who bring up Voldemort's prejudices and the comparisons to Hitler, I'm surprised nobody thought to make a connection to Magneto. Magneto believes that mutants should overthrow humans and rule by force, whereas Voldemort wants to rid the world of Muggles and Muggle-borns. Magneto's hatred is a reaction to the fear and hatred that humans have inflicted on mutants (Magneto himself was a Holocaust survivor, which intensifies his fears), and believes that a mutant revolution is necessary to ensure peace. While Voldemort has not expressed these fears himself, they undoubtedly exist in the wizarding world, as the books reference actual witch hunts and wizard burnings, and the need for the wizarding world to stay hidden and separate. Maybe Voldemort's prejudice comes from fear of what Muggles have done in the past, and believes that the wizarding world must eliminate this threat and take their rightful place as owners of the world.


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  #57  
Old May 15th, 2007, 5:00 pm
dragonmaiden50  Female.gif dragonmaiden50 is offline
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Re: How does Voldemort compare with other villains?

Voldy Vs. Darth vader
well considering that voldy has killed many of my fav characters and darth really only killed oby one Voldy wins.
Voldy vs. Sauron
Sauron is a giant flaming eye with thousand of orcs. Umm...I think he wins.
Valdy vs. Dr. Evil
Voldy hands down.


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  #58  
Old May 15th, 2007, 5:14 pm
witchygurl  Female.gif witchygurl is offline
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Re: How does Voldemort compare with other villains?

i love this thread!
I think that voldemort is different than most villians because he is human, but not. he doesn't have any feelings--his only insecurities are his fear of dying and his dad, a muggle. But personal jealousies, love, greed, don't come into play at all--only his want for power.

the villian he reminds me of most is the Wizard from Wicked (book, NOT musical). he is totally consumed by his own power and lives to persecute the people who he doesn't agree with. He, Hitler (who unfortunately was not fictional), and voldemort are all on the same line of genocide, kiling people different than they are. they all have their secret services.


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  #59  
Old June 9th, 2007, 10:04 pm
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Re: How does Voldemort compare with other villains?

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Originally Posted by dragonmaiden50 View Post
Voldy Vs. Darth vader
well considering that voldy has killed many of my fav characters and darth really only killed oby one Voldy wins.
Voldy vs. Sauron
Sauron is a giant flaming eye with thousand of orcs. Umm...I think he wins.
Valdy vs. Dr. Evil
Voldy hands down.
Voldemort versus Sauron in his Beleriand form before he took the shape of the lidless eye. That would be a closer fight, but Sauron is ultimately much more powerful. Voldemort is slightly similar to the Witch-King of Angmar (both sorcerors, both learnt from others and both rely on secrecy) but Voldemort is a better constructed villain because he learns from mistakes.


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  #60  
Old June 12th, 2007, 8:05 am
teardrops17  Male.gif teardrops17 is offline
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Re: How does Voldemort compare with other villains?

for me, villains are those "other" characters "opposing" the main characters...
one doesn't need to be "evil" to be a villain... some villains have their own reason for being evil... they are also humans... and they can have their own story where they are the "protagonists" having their opponents as villains...

now voldemort cannot have his story...
for he needs to show his whole self... and there's nothing inspiring in his story...

there's no love...
as simple as that....


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