META: City of the Faceless

Martin Phipps martinphipps2 at
Mon Dec 14 18:24:24 PST 2009

The same effect is achieved by having a villain kill a poor helpless
victim for no reason whatsoever.  It took me out of the story when in
Robocop 2 the villain killed an old woman when he carjacked her.  It
was completely unnecessary.  (He could have just told her to get
out.)  The purpose of that murder was 1) to show him and cold and
ruthless and 2) to get the viewer to hate him so you wouldn't feel bad
-or even feel good- when he meets his demise in the end.

In all fairness, making a villain the object of hatred usually works
very well for me: I often feel a sense of satisfaction when the bad
guy gets offed at the end of a movie, usually because I feel he had it
coming.  The difference in Robocop 2 is that the villain didn't get a
lot of screen time before his brain was harvested and used for the
Robocop program.  In that case, you hadn't had a whole movie to get to
dislike him: you just had a few random killings that were meant to
manipulate the viewer into hating him.


More information about the racc mailing list