Well, not you, personally. What I’m actually talking about are certain fictional characters. Over the past couple weeks, or so I watched the movies There Will Be Blood and The Wolf of Wall Street. I thought that both movies were well made in terms of acting, directing, and etc. Both Leonardo DiCaprio and Daniel Day Lewis are two of my favorite actors and they both did a tremendous job at chewing the scenery in their respective movies. But the problem I had was that neither character was likable. Neither of them had any redeeming qualities to their personalities that made me hold out hope that they’d change their ways nor did I have any sympathy for either character.
Now there are certain fictional characters that are unlikeable but I love to hate. The first one, that comes to mind, is the infamous Governor in Robert Kirkman’s The Walking Dead. The dude’s a psychopath both in the comic and the TV show that has a devastating effect on Rick and the whole gang. He killed off some beloved characters and his actions devestated Rick on a physical and psychological level. The Governor even had a chance to have some redeeming qualities as a father, but even that turned into something twisted since his daughter was a zombie. I loved to hate The Governor because he was so well written and such a powerfully messed up character. He was the antithesis of Rick. He was an example of the worst case scenario for humanity. He took crazy to a whole new level. And most importantly he got his just deserts in the end.
Other characters I love to hate are Darth Vader, who in the end actually redeems himself somewhat. Sister Jude in American Horror Story, who does a proverbial 180 on a morale level.
I know that not every character in a story will change or be changed by the events of the story. I get the whole idea of the ‘anti-hero’ that’s not necessarily a likable guy, but does the right thing, ie Clint Eastwood’s Spaghetti Westerns. There are more examples out there I am sure, but I think you get the point.
I think the reason, I really didn’t like There Will Be Blood or The Wolf of Wall Street so much, is that these unlikeable characters are the main character, the driving force of the story. For me to really get into a story the protagonist needs to have some element of likability or relatability to them. Neither of these characters had either.
So, what about you? Are there any fictional characters you simply can’t stand? Or ones that you love to hate?