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Mage Ham
Apr 28, 2010


MojoKingBee posted:

God I love Magic Man. He's a villain, but he's not really evil. He's just a huge rear end in a top hat.

This is, to me, what makes him that much more terrifying; he's a representation of banal evil.

Magic Man seems to be amoral, and not only exclusively works towards his own desires, he doesn't even percieve other people as having wants or desires; they're just objects for him to work his magic on.
This makes him a huge rear end in a top hat in the show, but if he were more of a 'big picture' thinker, he could easily be a genocidal madman or dictator. Magic Man is the banal, human evil that results from dehumanization.

The Lich, meanwhile, isn't all that scary (aside from Ron Perlman's silky tones) because he represents a completely understandable internal force, the drive toward death instead of life. He's something that we'd like to deny, but he's in all of us, we know him- and in most cases, it's easy to deny him, to not destroy yourself. The impulse toward life wins out.

The Magic Man, on the other hand, is also a tendency we all possess (self-absorption), but he's one that we don't have a strong motive to deny and may not even notice as it slowly drives us to greater and greater transgressions.
Scary.

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Mage Ham
Apr 28, 2010


Steve Yun posted:

I dunno if "evil" is the right word. She's not evil, but... I dunno, maybe she's lost part of her humanity?

She seems to be taking an indirect route towards 'evil' in that she's taking a nominally positive trait, honesty, to an extreme that isn't sustainable.
It's a fundamentally inhuman approach, which makes it dangerous and may also make it the only thing that will work for her.

PB has done this several times lately, with clarity and rationality in Wizards Only and with the protection of the kingdom in Earth and Water. In the end, decisions like dealing with FP only as a threat, and not a child, have consequences.

Flame Princess starts out as a kind of fiery tabula rasa, and it's neat to see her moving toward an independent moral compass rather than indulging Finn's relatively simplistic, and increasingly compromised, adventure-ethics.

Mage Ham
Apr 28, 2010


Roland Jones posted:

Ignoring the rest of your stuff, "inhuman" equaling "dangerous" is ridiculous because, besides not applying to anyone besides Finn in this show, a lot of the nastiest things people do are done because they're human. Take, for example, why Finn did that stuff to FP and the Ice King; that was a pretty human thing to do, and look where that led.

Besides that, FP's doing this for a very "human" reason: She was hurt, repeatedly, by dishonest people. She's trying to avoid that, and she's doing so by making everyone always tell the truth. That's not inhuman, it's immature and naive. Which aren't particularly great either, really, but it's different from what you're trying to say.

I agree that it's neat that FP's been developing, though, beyond "unstable girlfriend". I liked her from the start, but she's got a lot more character to her now.
Yeah, that's pretty sloppy terminology for this kind of discussion; point taken and chagrin felt.

I guess what I'm trying to get at is that it's a piecemeal sort of approach.
A human/bananaman/candy person/fox/etc. matures within a culture, and absorbs standards of acceptable behavior holistically by observation and imitation; they get it all together.

Since FP didn't have the benefit of anything like that, even as far as having contact with flame kingdom culture (she grew up in a literal bubble), she's experimenting, approximating what's good and acceptable one piece at a time.

That's the way I picture something like a machine or AI trying to do that, which is why I say 'inhuman'. Of course, something like a machine or AI is usually characterized as childlike, so immature and/or naive works about as well.

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