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Old 04-27-2009, 07:22 PM   #1
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Examples of hero-villain romance?

Can anyone give examples of a comic, graphic novel, anime, etc. where the hero or a member of the hero team has a romance with the villain or a member of the villain team? They have to at least kiss, it doesn't count if they only cast intense looks at each other. And it can't be for only one episode because of some seduction plot or temporary insanity or something. Should be an ongoing source of angst that they like each other but are on opposite sides.
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Old 04-28-2009, 02:50 AM   #2
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Are you still interested in this sort of romance if one party doesn't know the other party is a villain? If so, I'd recommend (spoiler oncoming)



Runaways.

And even if that's not quite what you're looking for, I'd recommend it anyways, as it's terrific.
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Old 04-28-2009, 02:58 AM   #3
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Not a comic book, but Starling and Lecter in Hannibal. Not so much noticeable in the movie, but definitely in the book.
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Old 04-28-2009, 05:03 AM   #4
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Are you still interested in this sort of romance if one party doesn't know the other party is a villain? If so, I'd recommend (spoiler oncoming)



Runaways.

And even if that's not quite what you're looking for, I'd recommend it anyways, as it's terrific.
Not really what I'm looking for - I probably should have specified that I wanted a romance with a happy ending, and would really prefer one where both characters know the other is on the 'wrong' side and angst over this.
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Old 04-28-2009, 07:40 PM   #5
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At various times there have been mixes and interesting cross-overs between Batman/Bruce Wayne and Catwoman/Selena Kyle.

Bruce likes Selena and they have dated, but Selina finds Bruce a little dull. Bruce likes Selena but wants her to ditch the Catwoman/criminal side. And Catwoman would totally do Batman, sees Catwoman as a crimnal.
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Old 04-28-2009, 09:27 PM   #6
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At various times there have been mixes and interesting cross-overs between Batman/Bruce Wayne and Catwoman/Selena Kyle.

Bruce likes Selena and they have dated, but Selina finds Bruce a little dull. Bruce likes Selena but wants her to ditch the Catwoman/criminal side. And Catwoman would totally do Batman, sees Catwoman as a crimnal.
Yeah, Batman/Catwoman is one of the best, if not the best example out there. But you seem to be looking for a contained story with an ending and in comics continuity - nothing ever ends - yay! (but really - boo!).

Maybe Rogue and Gambit in the Ultimate X-Men Universe? I know she used to be a baddie (though it was mostly forced up on her) and he is a baddie and she ends up leaving the X-men for him - but I don't remember how it turns out, and again, it's comics, so it never really ends.

Scott Summers (Cyclops) and Emma Frost (The White Queen) but they don't really officially start getting together I don't think until she comes over to the good side (although she's still deliciously bad even when she's good). And again, it's comics, so there's no real ending. The Joss Whedon arc on Astonishing X-Men with them is great though.

Spiderman/Black Cat - though I think Black Cat's now considered a superheroine and their relationship is always on again off again (of course he married Mary Jane, so...)

Though the focus largely became Xena and Gabrielle in Xena Warrior Princess there was also a complicated ongoing relationship with Xena and Ares...and it never seemed to work out, in part because of their different beliefs.

Katara and Zuko from The Last Airbender are a decent example that have a somewhat definitive end, but Zuko comes over to the side of good in the end and thus maybe undoes what you're looking for. There is flirtation and the beginnings of a relationship emerging when he's not yet converted though.

Buffy The Vampire Slayer and Spike are actually a great example. He too comes over to the side of good for her, but he's head over heels in love with her way before he comes over to good - and he actually goes through hell to "become good" so he can be with her. She denies it but is long attracted to and flirting with him even before he "switches teams".

In Willow - Madmartigan and Sorsha (sp?) have a great hero villain flirtation thing going on and it's got a definitive ending, but she converts fairly easily - not much drama to it - it's pretty clear she never wanted to be a bad guy.

In Pitch Black Riddick and Carolyn do a pretty decent hero/villain dance, of course he's really more of a "misunderstood villain type" and she's more of a "not so perfect hero" but they clearly vibe each other. They don't end up together - but only because one of them dies...

I feel like there are a lot of examples of this in film noir - but all fairly stereotypically with the femme fatale character and the detective/hero character - although I think generally the femme fatal is not supposed to fall for the hero and to be really just leading him on. But Vertigo is a decent example of when the femme fatal and hero actually do fall for each other.

The Spirit is rife with Hero/Femme Fatale realtionships, but again, no real endings.

It seems like I'm missing maybe a billion of these - maybe more will come to me. I'll keep thinking.
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Old 04-29-2009, 03:38 PM   #7
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Yeah, I think the best one would be the Batman and Catwoman one. But there is also Batman and Talia (R'as Al Ghul's daughter).
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Old 04-29-2009, 07:47 PM   #8
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Yeah, I think the best one would be the Batman and Catwoman one. But there is also Batman and Talia (R'as Al Ghul's daughter).
That is a good one. But everyone involved knows the identity of everyone else. For me what makes the catwoman version more interesting (and admittedly screwed up) is the whole alter-ego dynamic that you have in essence a love... quadrangle, but there are only two people involved.

But Talia IS a good one.
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Old 04-29-2009, 08:52 PM   #9
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Wow, lots of examples, thank you! ^_^ I'll put those pairings on my list of things to look up.

I should have been more clear when I said a happy ending - I wasn't thinking that it couldn't be an open-ended series, I was thinking that the romance subplot should preferably be resolved in the direction of making the two characters a permanent couple. I was thinking that as the relationship becomes more public knowledge the prejudice of the other hero-team members about it would be a nice way to show that they aren't really all that heroic.

The story idea I'm trying to develop is one where there are a permanent hero team and villain team, but the main characters are the villains, who are the smart, pragmatic ones who have a more real understanding of the way the world works, while the heroes are the annoying clueless idealist zealots who have ridiculous good luck. Sort of like the social commentary in Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog but not a parody. A typical fantasy-adventure-comedy-romance anime plot, just focused on the villain team instead of the hero team.
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Old 04-29-2009, 09:43 PM   #10
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You know I was thinking, a decent example of this is actually in Garth Ennis' The Boys. The main characters are not villains exactly, but they are almost exactly your definition "the smart, pragmatic ones who have a real understanding of the way the world works" and their whole MO is to bring down "superheroes" who, in this book, are generally pretty f'd up. Not that there aren't "good" superheroes but most of the heroes in Ennis' world are not that cut and dry. Anyway, one of the guys (Hughie) that is working with the main "sort of" bad guys that are trying to bring down superheroes falls for/is falling for one of the superheroes (girl - I forget her name). Part of what makes it interesting is that she's one of the few superheroes that is actually really truly a good guy (and good person in general) and yet Hughie's whole mission is to undo her superhero team and superheroes like her.

Unfortunately, The Boys, which started out so strong, has devolved pretty hard (for me at least) it's all narrative and talking heads explaining everything paired with kind of over the top shocking revelations (the latter of which I don't mind so much, except it feels pretty forced at this point). Anyway, all that to say, I stopped reading it months ago, but in some ways it sounds like almost exactly what you're looking for.

I think comics are going to continue giving you problems though, if only because of the constant open-ended aspect. Even classic couples that get together (Batman and Catwoman) often don't stay together and comics publishers love to come around and ret-con everything away anyway...so nothing is sacred. That said, with characters like Batman and Catwoman they're so archetypal that maybe they exist beyond continuity. I'd like to think so at least.

Good luck!
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Old 05-01-2009, 06:28 AM   #11
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I think comics are going to continue giving you problems though, if only because of the constant open-ended aspect. Even classic couples that get together (Batman and Catwoman) often don't stay together and comics publishers love to come around and ret-con everything away anyway...so nothing is sacred. That said, with characters like Batman and Catwoman they're so archetypal that maybe they exist beyond continuity. I'd like to think so at least.

Good luck!
You should be more specific man, not all comics are like that. Just two publishers are really like that and maybe some of Image. But Dynamite isn't like that, IDW isn't like that, Devil's Due isn't like that, Bluewater isn't like that, Dark Horse isn't like that.
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Old 05-01-2009, 10:58 AM   #12
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You should be more specific man
First things first, I'm not a man

All that said, you're right, ret-con is more of a problem with Marvel and DC, but since all of the comic hero/villain examples I listed with the exception of The Boys were Marvel and DC I assumed it was understood that I was talking primarily about Marvel and DC. I'll be more specific in the future.

And actually, even The Boys started as Wildstorm, which of course is now owned by DC. But it has since moved to Dynamite, so I guess technically it's outside the big two now.
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Old 05-01-2009, 11:05 AM   #13
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First things first, I'm not a man
Oh sorry about that, my bad.
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Old 05-01-2009, 11:18 AM   #14
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Oh sorry about that, my bad.
No problem.
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Old 05-03-2009, 02:25 AM   #15
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Nice thread idea.

I seem to recall Superman getting tempted by a woman working for his nemesis. The relationship is Hancock is interesting.
I can't think of a "Mr. and Mrs. Smith", "Pritzi's Honor" situation with superheroes, but it's sure as hell a good idea.
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Old 05-06-2009, 01:19 AM   #16
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For anime.....I can think of quite a few.

Vegeta and Bulma are my all time favorite. From Dragonball Z.

Cho Hakkai and Yaone of Gensomaden Saiyuki. Definitely ongoing thing going on there.

There's also Jun Kazama and Kazuya Mishima from the video game Tekken.

For others, there's Buffy and Spike hehe.
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Old 07-26-2009, 09:48 PM   #17
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I think also, Batman and Poison Ivy?
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Old 07-26-2009, 10:25 PM   #18
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I think also, Batman and Poison Ivy?
I don't think Batman and Poison Ivy have ever really gotten together. I mean Poison Ivy (in true Femme Fatale style) uses her sexuality recklessly "at" Batman (and everyone) all the time, but I don't think they've ever truly been romantically linked.

The only person Poison Ivy ever seems really loyal to and seems to fall for (other than herself and nature) is Harley Quinn - but they're definitely both villains.

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Old 07-27-2009, 10:06 PM   #19
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Batman/Catwoman
Batman/Talia (He actually was married to her for a short while)
Beast Boy/Terra
Spiderman/Black Cat (pre-marriage)
Green Lantern/Star Sapphire
Hawkeye/Black Widow (when she was still a Soviet Spy)
Kid Flash/Jynx (in the Teen Titans Go animated series)

I'm trying to remember . . . there are a few with the heroines liking villians, but I can't think of them off the top of my head.
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Old 08-30-2009, 07:49 AM   #20
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Well, it's not a comic, but I once wrote a story where "heroes" and "villains" were totally random categories for people based on how they looked (in this world), not their actions. And in that world, it was verboten, h/v romance.

So of course out hero, who's a v, falls in love with a pretty little h.
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Old 08-30-2009, 08:00 AM   #21
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Has anyone mentioned Rogue and Magneto? Not really sure how she ended up with his kid in the bizzaro world, but he was good then... *shrugs*
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Old 08-30-2009, 11:31 AM   #22
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Batman/Catwoman
Batman/Talia (He actually was married to her for a short while).
Batman/Talia is actually a really good one - I can't believe I didn't think of that one. And they have a child together - aptly named Damian.

Quote:
Has anyone mentioned Rogue and Magneto? Not really sure how she ended up with his kid in the bizzaro world, but he was good then... *shrugs*
Yeah, but in AOA (Age of Apocalypse) Rogue and Magneto were both heroes, not hero/villain.

Although they were together for a bit in the "regular universe" while Mags was a villain (Uncanny X-men #269 - #274 I think). But it didn't last long. There was an ongoing kind of wistfulness, at least from Rogue's side of things, but it went exactly nowhere.

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Old 08-31-2009, 02:17 AM   #23
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Spoiler and Robin. It's been ages since I picked up a DC title, so I don't know how that relationship ended...
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Old 08-31-2009, 08:15 AM   #24
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Yeah, but Spoiler isn't really a villain. That relationship did end, though there's still flirtation and such...and now Steph (Spoiler) is the new Batgirl (sidebar: which totally sucks). But I don't think Spoiler was every truly a villain - she was a bit of an outcast from the bat family - but her whole origin story is basically that her father was a villain and she wanted to stop him - hence she donned the Spoiler costume.

Gods, I'm such a nerd. Why do I know all this useless information?!
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Old 08-31-2009, 08:32 AM   #25
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Wink

Daredevil and Typhoid Mary is a good one.
http://daredevil.dreamhost.com/cltyphoid.htm

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