1. Post about yourself on your wiki page--tell us who you are, what you like, what you want to study, what your hobbies are, basically anything about yourself you'd like us to know about. Post a picture of yourself using the File button on the editing toolbar (it's got a little color picture next to it).

2. Why did we watch a children's movie in a college class?


1. Well I am Tyler. I grew up in Rio Rancho, New Mexico. I enjoy playing soccer, going to shows, and just relaxing while not at work or school. I plan on majoring in Journalism, though I do not know what I want to do with that degree after college.

2. I think that we watched this children's movie to get an over exaggerated view of both the hero and the villain. These caricatures of human behavior are not exactly realistic, but they are a good introduction into recognizing traits in the characters. In such an extreme storyline, it is easy to distinguish the line between good and bad, but in the novels we will be reading in class this fall, the line will not always be so clear. Also it is Batman, so that is why we watched it.

This quote from Lincoln is related to Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde because both take a deep look into what makes a person "evil". Lincoln asserted that few people are purely good, and few are purely evil, and I would like to take that a step farther and say that no one is completely good or bad. As was the case with Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Dr. Jekyll contained both good and bad, and Hyde was acting off of animalistic instinct, not necessarily evil. Few things in life are black and white, even though we generally categorize them as such.

I agree with you on the fact that I do not believe that anyone
is completely good or bad. I think we all have a mixture of both.
It depends which part of us we allow to thrive and control our actions.
- HeyThereAri HeyThereAri Sep 6, 2011 Ari

I think it is really interesting how you consider the possibility that Hyde is not evil, but acting off of instinct. Everyone seems to come straight to the conclusion that Hyde is purely the evil side of Jakyll, including myself. - Droybal Droybal Sep 7, 2011Daniel

Journal Questions for the Week of September 13, 2010

1.The poem Beowulf expresses distinct characteristics that are necessary for an individual fulfill to be a good king, as we discussed in class. What guidelines are implied for successful villainy?

2.Create your own Villain-O-Meter. As the semester progresses, rank each villain we encounter on the scale, compared to the others. You can use a 1-10 ranking system, a chart, or whatever way you choose in order to show the relative positions of each baddie.

3. How would you characterize a successful class discussion? What features are present? Which are absent? How would you suggest we best accomplish such a discussion?

1. Some guidelines for successful villainy are the ability to instill fear, a certain level of dehumanization (if people can relate to you, you lose part of the edge that makes a "villain"), and‍‍‍‍‍‍ no backstory ‍‍‍‍‍‍that can cause people to sympathize with you.

I agree that they would be more mysterious and evil with no past or history and no apparent motive for why they are the way they are. I guess my question is Would a villain be more successful if you did sympathize with them? How much easier is it to get to your victim if they let you sleep in their house because they trust you?- lduran02 lduran02 Sep 8, 2011Lawrence

I agree with your point about no backstory. If someone is just being evil to be evil, and you have no idea why then you are less likely to sympathize, but if you know the villian had perhaps a troubled childhood then you would perhaps 'feel for them'. I also like your ranking system, how you cut Grendel's Mother and the Dragon a break. Also how Joker is ranked, because good golly he is evil, scary evil. - reinada reinada Sep 9, 2011Reina

9-The Joker
8-Lex Luthor, Medea
7-Grendel, Mr. Hyde, Malifiscent
5-Dr. Jekyll
4-Beowulf, Jason
2-Dragon, Grendel's Mother, Batman

3. A successful class discussion involves everyone participating, with all of the comments being on topic. No side conversations.

1. Why do you think that Dexter is a series that enjoys popularity in our particular moment in history? Could it have been popular at another time? Why or why not?
Our culture is very interested in gore, and revenge. But i think this is also true for cultures in history. While this exact show may not have been able to be popular in another time period, I think an adaptation would be able to.

2. What parallels can you draw between Dexter, Dr. Jekyll, Batman and Superman? Go beyond the surface. How are they different from characters like Beowulf?
Dexter, Dr. Jekyll, Batman and Superman are all conflicted about their sense of good vs. evil. They are not entirely sure of their actions, or even the actions of their enemies. Beowulf is a more simple character, operating off of honor and revenge, with no substance or question about his "good"

3. From Miles's presentation: Why is the character of Dracula/the drinking of blood considered sexual?
Well on the physical level, it is an act between two people where the male is dominant in an almost animalistic sense. On a deeper emotional level though, a "Dracula" character could represent completely letting go of inhibitions and prudence and giving into desire and passion.

4. From Hunter's presentation: Why did Jack the Ripper get away with his crimes when the media coverage/police investigation so great?
Simply put, Jack the Ripper was never caught because of the time period. He operated in the night, and his victims were prostitutes which usually meant no close family or friends to push for an investigation. As long as he left no witnesses or obvious evidence Jack the Ripper was free to do as he pleased.

1. In Medea, there are several characters who know of Medea's plans, and yet they do not try to stop her. Why do these characters let villainy happen? Do the gods approve of her choices? What are the implications of their approval or disapproval?
I don't see how any "god" could approve of medea's choices. and with no one stopping her, i think euripedes was playing on the choices of free will. The theme of free will is constant throughout many religions, (why does the omnipotent god do nothing to stop evil).

2. From Kaylee's presentation: Choose either (a) or (b)
(a) Is Mao's quotation, "In this world, revolution is the mainstream" still true?
There have been many revolutions occurring worldwide recently, and not just violent ones. Revolution over social issues are becoming more prevalent. I think this stems from a persons inborn want/need to change their surroundings, or have control. so yes, revolution is and will be considered mainstream.

(b) Do you have a limit or a threshold of how many people can die before a cause becomes unjust?
To me, one human life is equal to a thousand. To be able to take that life is disgusting, and I cannot think of a cause that I would be willing to die for. I think any "cause" that takes a human life (unless it is to save more) is not a just cause.

3. From Lawrence's presentation: Everyone has an inner beast, an animal hidden within the subconscious. What is yours and why?
Probably a honey badger. The most badass of all the badgers. Because they eat cobras, thats why.


Touché sir... well played...- lduran02 lduran02 Sep 22, 2011 (Lawrence)

You have an interesting point about Medea being about free will. I hadn't realy thought about that. It certainly explains the gods' lack of involvement. -sdimpfel

Omg! XD as soon as I saw the words "honey badger" I thought to myself "no way... he couldn't possibly..." then I read the rest. Kudos, sir. Not only on having the most badass animals as your inner beast (Honey badger don't give a fuck!) but also for having watched the video. I would tip my hat to you if I had one. - Roxypotter13 Roxypotter13 Sep 27, 2011

Journal Questions for the Week of September 27, 2011

1. How do female villains differ from male villains?
Male villains are usually more physically dominant, where female villains are more mentally abusive. Male villains are also more likely to be a villain just because. female villains usually have a motive (jealousy, greed, lust).

2. How is color used to portray aspects of good and evil in Sleeping Beauty?
The good characters are always dressed in bright, "happy" colors, and the villains are dressed in black, with lots of reds and greens being used. The good characters colors are most reminiscent of nature, and the villains colors contrast that, making them unnatural looking and more fearful.

I liked your choice of words. 'Mentally abusive'. I completely agree! Women may not be physically stronger, but sometimes mind games can hurt worse than being punched in the face. And from what we have seen you are also right about the whole 'motive' thing, except for I think Grendel. His motive was that he was crazy pissed off that people were having a party in the Mead Hall, so he was gonna kill some people. But other than him (and is he really even a 'him'? he was a monster, not really a man), all the other male villains are villains just cause. - reinada reinada Sep 29, 2011Reina

I think you made an excellent poing comparing the "good" characters in Sleeping Beauty to nature because now that I think about it, their closeness with nature, especially Sleeping Beauty's, had a really big part in them being portrayed as good in the film. -angelica

1. Make a case for Iago as villain, and then, using at least two pieces of the same evidence, make a case for Othello as villain.
In my opinion, Iago is most definitely the villain. He was the manipulator, Othello was simply weak minded. But one could make the case for either one to be the main villain.
For Iago-
He planted the idea in Brabanzio's head about Othello using witchcraft to seduce his daughter. This was unnecesary and weakened the ties between Brabanzio and Desdemona.
He planted the idea in Othello's head about Desdemona having an affair. By introducing this idea to Othello he set the main action of the play into order, Othello's killing of Desdemona.

For Othello-
He kills his wife over an alleged affair with little evidence supporting it.
He is overcome by emotion, not giving heed to any form of logical or reasonable response. He reacted in the way a soldier would have to react, by destroying the enemy quickly and without question. In his mind, his wife was the enemy.

2. From Tyler's presentation: What is one character (hero or villain) so far that we have looked at that could have an undiagnosed mental disorder?

3. From Emily's presentation: Pick 2-3 villains (from anywhere) and draw parallels between them; looking at actions, appearance, backstory, etc. How are they recycled villains?
Jafar and Malificent. Both are tall, skinny, wear dark robes, and a hat. Both have bird sidekicks. Both turn into giant predators in the climax, both want ultimate power. Both have fixated all of their destructive efforts upon one person. Both do not have a backstory, or any given reason for their motives.

Your comparisons between Jafar and Maleficent are pretty interesting and i like your points arguing for the evil nature of Othello.- Droybal Droybal Oct 11, 2011

Journal Questions for the Week of October 11, 2011

1. We have discussed how when something defies what is natural, we find it scary, but what makes something unnatural? There are a lot of elements to our world that are not natural, i.e. cars and computers, and yet we do not find them scary. What causes this difference?
The difference is control. We have control over our computers and machinery (for now). But when something is unnatural and we do not have control over it, that is when it is terrifying. Because we do not know how to deal with the problem, or even worse, we do not know what the problem is.

2. If you had only this movie (The Dark Knight) to judge Batman for his actions, what would you define as heroic? Would you define anything he does as villainous? From where do your decisions originate?
He is heroic because he does what is best for society. He is not doing for jealous purposes, he is willing to take the fall for harvey dent. This not villainous.

3. We'll begin our discussion next week talking about The Dark Knight. Develop your own question to kick off discussion and post it here.
What villain archetype does the joker and his henchman fit into?

I also think that the reason we dont consider computers and cars unnatural is because we have control of them. - HeyThereAri HeyThereAri Oct 18, 2011Ari

Journal Questions for the Week of October 18, 2011
Before I answer the questions I need to rant about something I didn't have a chance to talk about in class. In the previous text we have studied, the heroes are reminiscent of a god of a monotheistic religion. They have powers, they serve justice, people fear them, etc...But in the Watchmen, the heroes remind me of the Greek gods. They have powers, but they do not necessarily use them for good.

1. "Quis custodiet ipsos custodes"--who watches the watchmen. How can this idea relate to our overall study of villains in this course? Who should be responsible for monitoring what's happening in the world? How do you see your own role?
There should be no one single being or body governing people's actions. This puts a monopoly on the ideas of right and wrong, where morals change and evolve throughout generations.

2. From Jaclyn's presentation: Are privateers less admirable than pirates because they had permission to be "bad?"
I see privateers as Dexter where pirates would be Jack the Ripper. and everyone in class seems to admire him. I think privateers are using a legal outlet to pursue their violent nature.

3. From Daniel's presentation: Do Eddie Brock (Venom) and Cletus Cassidy (Carnage) share the same levels of responsibility for their actions?
Yes, I believe that they are not to be held accountable for the actions that the symbiote put them through.

4. Remember the new due date for Paper 2.
Oh, I will remember.

5. Make sure to get peer advisement in order to be able to have priority registration.

I do see how the Watchmen are kind of like the Greek gods, except most of the Watchmen don't have any real "powers". They put themselves in positions of power (or the government did), and then they sort of ran with it. I think the Watchmen try, but they are just human so it isn't surprising that they fail at times. - reinada reinadaReina

Journal Questions for the Week of October 25, 2011

1. Do you think there is a standard of morality that can be applied, regardless of external details and situations? That is, is there anything that is inherently good or evil?
I do not believe that there are any inherently "bad" actions. I think actions can be labeled bad because of their circumstances, but I think any type of "bad" behavior can be looked at differently in different situation. Morality changes through time, and through culture, so it is not possible for a broad standard of morality.

2. From Ari's presentation: was Lord Voldemort born evil or was he a victim of his upbringing/life circumstances?
I do not think that anyone is born "evil". Everybody is a product of their environment, circumstances, mental disposition, etc..

3. From Lena's presentation: How does the vampire lore of today reflect on society and what do you think the next era's lore could hold?
The vampire lore of today reflects society's want for a dark, mysterious lover. A new era of vampire could have them being conflicted between their identity as a vampire, and their want to fit in with society.

4. Make sure to get the readings for this week from the Wiki Texts section.

Journal Questions for the Week of November 1, 2010

1. "[M]ost of us never really grow up or mature all that much -- we simply grow taller...the child we always are, whose needs are simple, whose daily life is still best described by fairy tales [remains]."-Leo Rosten

We began the semester looking at a children's work. What new insight can you bring to the child-centered works we'll be looking at the for rest of the semester? What can be gained by this exploration?

Now that we all already understand the morals that these works are trying to teach to children, we can look deeper into the symbols that the author used. This an show what exactly the author was thinking and may reveal lessons that were aimed at adults.

2. From Angelica's presentation: (H. H. Holmes) Why are people so fascinated by things that are so gruesome and morbid?

This study raises the point that maybe people are so interested in serial killers for two reasons. The first being that the stories allow us to live out our own fantasies of violence without remorse or morals. The second one is to use the story as a sort of mirror for our own lives, looking at the evil doer and being grateful that we don't act like that.

Very interesting study. It was a great read. - Roxypotter13 Roxypotter13 Nov 5, 2011

3. From Stephanie's presentation: Many times people blame their actions on demons--why is this an excuse that people use?
I believe this is due to the fact that people do not like to be held responsible for their own actions. Many people attribute positive things to "god" and attribute the negative things to a demon or the devil. I think this stems from the lack of self confidence that people have. They do not want to believe that they have the power to do such actions without a supernatural being helping them.

1. Make a case for Peter Pan as the villain of the story. Also, please update your evil-o-meter if you haven't recently.
Peter pan could be viewed as the villain because he is a corrupter. While he is not "evil" he does have negative qualities that effect the people (and fairies) around him. He also killed a lot of pirates...

2. From Sam's presentation: Was Snape mostly a villain? Why or why not?
I would say that Snape was a normal human being in love. It drove him to do heinous things, but taht happens to the best of us. i think his heart was good but because of his emotions he was tempted to do bad things.

3. From Kharli's presentation: Did Spike deserve redemption after what he tried to do to Buffy?
I know nothing about Buffy but from Kharli's presentation I would have to say that Spike did deserve redemption. It seems like him and Buffy were in a passionate, at times violent, relationship and though they both mistreated the other I think he cared about her. And that deserves to be recognized.

Very interesting. I like your idea of Peter being a corrupter and your explanation of why Spike deserved to be redeemed. - Roxypotter13 Roxypotter13 Nov 13, 2011

Huh. You're so right. Peter was a corrupter, and I feel as though we've learned in this class that sometimes those who corrupt others are the worst villains (ie Iago). - Kayleethegr8 Kayleethegr8 Nov 11, 2011Kaylee

I love that killing pirates is almost an after thought since in that world killing pirates doesn't seem to be veiwed as evil just something that occurs. -sdimpfel

1. When Ender found the queen's egg, he decided not to tell the world until he was sure they could accept it. To that end, he wrote a book about the Buggers and their point-of-view, hoping to elicit empathy in mankind. The problem with this is that, when Ender does decide to reveal the truth, his lie will be viewed as a deception, and any empathy he has managed to cultivate may fall prey to suspicion. How can Ender prove to the world that he (and ultimately humanity) wasn't being manipulated by the Buggers?
I think it would be very hard for Ender to prove that he was not manipulated by the Buggers. I think in humanity's eyes, ender is just a tool to be used by other beings. That is how he was viewed at the school, and that is how he will be viewed by empathizing with the Buggers.

2. From Reina's presentation:Do you believe that Rasputin was a real holy man? Or were his predictions and healing just luck, fraud or coincidence?
Well I think it is pretty obvious that Rasputin didn't have any magical abilities. I think the stories are either coincidence, or fabricated and exaggerated over time. Also the placebo effect could have had an influence, if the people genuinely believed that Rasputin would heal them, then that might have been all it needed to fix them.

3. From Jamie's presentation: Why do you think Disney chose to portray Hades as an evil villain to Hercules?
I think because Disney movies are aimed at the mostly Judeo-Christian American market and this culture can easily relate to a "ruler of the underworld" as a villain. It doesn't even have to explained as to why Hades is bad, it can be assumed that he is inherently evil, which fits in with this society's views of the devil.

I like how you said that people were easily fixed by believing Rasputin fixed them. I also see your point on why Disney chose to portray Hades as evil.
- jserru jserru Nov 29, 2011Jaclyn
Last week I attended a lecture by Nasario Garcia in the honors forum. It covered the tradition of oral history, and steps to the interviewing process. This was interesting to me, as my major is journalism.

1. The Princess Bride has multiple villains. Dicuss how each one reflects/matches a heroic character.
Tyrone reflects Inigo, they possess very different traits that lead to the climatic battle scene of the film. Tyrone is cold and manipulative, smart and a bit of a sadist. Inigo is emotional and revengeful, loyal and simple.

Prince Humperdink reflects Westly for similar reasons. Throughout the whole movie, Humperdink does not show any amount of love toward another person, and love is the vessel that drives mosts of Westly's actions. Humperdink is also cowardly and self obsessed, and Westly is courageous and more caring towards other people.

2. Why does Westly adopt the outside semblance of a stereotypical villain, and does it help him to succeed?
Westly adopts the role of the Dread Pirate Roberts because it would keep him safe. By instilling this fear in his peers, Westly was able to survive long enough to return to Buttercup.

I agree with your answer to question 2. Westly used The Dread Pirate Roberts as a scape goat or a safety net in order to stay alive and one day return to Buttercup. In my opinion that was pretty genus. - Jamiea.book Jamiea.book Dec 5, 2011

On Wednesday I went to a Signed Language lecture in the sub. There were 6 speakers (signers) and I learned a lot of new vocabulary and usage of ASL.