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This is one of the good guys! ... Well, as close as we get to it.
~ Harumi Nakahara.
Heroes by Proxy are a subset of heroes who have no desire to be good or heroic in the slightest, but were forced into it by circumstance. This can be due to things like betrayal from the villain, brainwashing, or having no option in the matter. Whatever the reason, these heroes do the right thing but not based on their morals or initiative. They are the opposite of Villains By Proxy.

There are several different models this can manifest in:

  • The Nominal Hero: Heroes who do good, not because they feel their actions are right but rather because they can directly benefit from the actions being taken. Heroes like The Bride from Kill Bill or Varrick from Avatar: The Legend of Korra are perfect examples of this.
  • The Unwitting Hero: Neutral parties who are tricked into doing the right thing by others. Grim from The Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy is one of the better examples of this.
  • The Assigned Protagonist: Characters who become protagonists based purely on responsibility being thrust upon them and not because they actually want to. Heroes like Doctor Venture of The Venture Brothers and Shinji Ikari epitomize this. Though some of characters of this type, such as John Constantine, may eventually start doing the right thing of their own accord.
  • The Best of the Worst: Heroes who are heroes only because they live in Crapsack Worlds where, as bad as they are, they're still the best of a bad situation, such as The Boss from the Saint's Row games.
  • The Token Evil Teammate: Heroes who in any other scenario would be doing evil but do good, purely as a favor to another hero. Characters such as Hiei from Yu Yu Hakusho embody this concept.


Important Note: This should not be used to pass off antagonists and villains, these characters have to at least have some basic morality and need advance the plot towards conflict resolution. Likewise, please do NOT add characters who are Pure Good, The Messiah, or Outright Heroes in this category as they are contradictory to heroes by proxy. Also don't add heroes who started off not wanting to be heroes but embraced the role later. Save that for Reluctant Heroes.

Sliding Scale of Heroes

This wiki currently recognizes four different overarching standards for a hero's morality.

  1. Pure Good: Heroes who are always above petty selfish behaviors and act entirely for the sake of others and are incorruptible in their pursuits.
  2. Outright Heroes: The standard hero model, not completely incorruptible and possibly even less than heroic on occasion, but still virtuous and true over all.
  3. Anti-Heroes: Heroes who are driven mostly on personal desires such as greed or revenge and/or often use questionable methods, but are still good enough to be considered heroes.
  4. Heroes by Proxy: Heroes who never chose to be heroes in the first place, often being forced into being heroes or become heroes through sheer coincidence.

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