[Tigerstar bares his fangs at twilight, his orange eyes glowing]

Villains Of Our Villains by Fleckedpaw

Art by Wings-of-North

Fleckedpaw analyses some infamous villains in Warriors

There have been many villains sent to the Dark Forest, each for crimes wildly different. But there is always one thing in common. Whether it’s Tigerstar or Mapleshade that we’re talking about, there’s always a reason why they did what they did, there’s always a motive—and these motives are, oddly enough, usually caused by another cat. Let’s take a look at the various motives of several of the biggest Warriors villains and identify who the original villains in each of their stories, whether they’d realized it or not.

1. TIGERSTAR (the first)
Ah, Tigerstar. One of the first villains in our great big Warriors saga, Tigerstar murdered multiple cats and caused the deaths of more indirectly, all because of one factor: Ambition. While ambition can be a good trait, Tigerstar’s ambition was paired with a ruthlessness and tendency to prefer violence over peacefulness. This meant that in order to achieve his goals which include becoming the leader of his clan and becoming the strongest warrior possible, Tigerstar ended up almost always resorting to backhanded moves that often resulted in injured or killed cats. Not only is he accused of murder, he even attempted to kill his own leader, Bluestar, a grave form of treason.
Now, obviously, he probably wasn’t born with bloodthirsty tendencies. So what caused that? Well, we can pinpoint at least some of that on Tigerstar’s mentor—Thistleclaw. Because Tigerstar’s biological dad, Pinestar, left the clan to become a kittypet, we can suspect that Tigerpaw may have seen Thistleclaw as an admirable role model and maybe even a father figure. Thistleclaw was a great warrior, though he shared a bloodthirstiness with the future Tigerstar and would resort to violence whenever he could have gone with a more peaceful approach.
During training, Thistleclaw was a brutal and enthusiastic mentor, and he even encouraged Tigerpaw to attack an innocent kittypet who was just a kit, just for wandering a bit onto their territory. Because of Tigerpaw’s admiration of Thistleclaw, I’ve got no doubt that young Tigerpaw would have wanted to be as much like Thistleclaw as he could be. Thistleclaw was a negative influence in Tigerstar’s life, as while when Tigerstar was a kit he had retained his determination and ambition, it was only upon becoming Thistleclaw’s apprentice that he began showing more vicious and terrible traits. It’s easy to see how similar Tigerstar and Thistleclaw really are.
But another villain in Tigerstar’s life would have had to be his father, Pinestar. If Pinestar had stayed in ThunderClan, Tigerstar probably would have seen him as a role model and father figure instead, and ended up molding his traits to be more similar to his dad, who was generally a good cat though he did make some questionable decisions.
Furthermore, if Pinestar had remained, then he may have appointed a different mentor to Tigerkit, and even if he did eventually leave, Tigerpaw could have had a more positive influence in his life. But these are all possibilities of good things that may have happened if Pinestar had stayed. What bad things actually happened because he left?
Pinestar’s litter of kits had all been sickly and he left without knowing that they would all be alright—and every single one had passed away except for Tigerkit. Maybe Tigerstar had held some resentment towards Pinestar for all his life and perhaps he had tried to make himself seem as different as Pinestar as he could, taking away the good traits that he had in common with Pinestar and filling them with aforementioned Thistleclaw’s bad ones. But this is just a possibility.
Altogether, I think we can safely say that the major villain in Tigerstar’s story would be Thistleclaw, and Pinestar could have added on to how Tigerstar ended up. Please note that I have no idea what happened in Tigerclaw’s Fury so I could be entirely wrong about everything.

2. MAPLESHADE
I’m sure we all know her story quite well. While Mapleshade’s tale was never presented as a big part of the main series, this manipulative cat is a behind-the-scenes villain that only goes on-screen during Omen of the Stars, and even then, she is usually seen in the Dark Forest (but I could be wrong. I’ve skipped a bunch of Warriors books because I don’t like buying things and so have to resort to various libraries). The interesting thing about Mapleshade is that the story of her living deeds is so short that it can be packed into a novella. Meanwhile, her deeds after death are much more spread out. You’ll have to read those like a scavenger hunt if you haven’t already.
Now, Mapleshade’s big villains are more or less obvious. While originally Mapleshade was this courageous™, loyal™, kind-hearted™ warrior of ThunderClan, whose only mistake was loving a cat of another clan. A cat by the name of Appledusk of RiverClan. Well, eventually ThunderClan found out that the kits that Mapleshade had were those of Appledusk’s, and long story short, ThunderClan freaked out and kicked her out. And so, Mapleshade was like, “hey! You all are so mean!” And so she grabbed her kits and ran towards RiverClan for salvation. But her teeth slipped while she was running across the stepping stones. Oops, the kits fell into the water and they all drowned! The end.
But even though these kits had died and Mapleshade had gotten kicked out of her own clan and the girl’s been through a lot, RiverClan turned their noses up and refused to accept her into the clan. Not even Appledusk, who may I add went to StarClan, tried to defend her: a queen who’d lost her kits and been exiled for loving.
Mapleshade, in turn, grew extremely angry. She became vengeful, obsessive, and all these traumatic events drove her to the point of insanity. She’d lost everything. Her clan, her kits, her mate. So now Mapleshade becomes a murderer who kills more than one person (or cat, in this case) with careful planning between each one. Mapleshade received hallucinations as she killed each cat of her kits, wailing to her for help. With each cat that she killed, each to avenge her kits, one kit disappeared from her hallucinations. Mapleshade killed three cats, one of which was Appledusk.
So, who is the villain of this story? Most signs point to Appledusk, who didn’t defend her, because unlike the other two cats killed by Mapleshade, he didn’t have a decent reason. While being driven out of ThunderClan and losing her kits were both great factors in making Mapleshade become the terrible cat we know today, Appledusk rejecting her was really what drove her to her breaking point. If Appledusk had defended her, what would have happened? We’ll never know. But certainly, Mapleshade would have most likely held some hope within her, not as much resentment towards her former mate even if he hadn’t ended up driven away with her or something of the sort. Maybe she wouldn’t have ended up how she did.
So. The big villain of Mapleshade’s tale? Appledusk. While there were other cats that made Mapleshade the cat we all know and hate, Appledusk’s selfish decisions were the biggest factor.

3. SCOURGE

Once upon a time, we had a little kittypet named Tiny. So he was walking into the forest one day for absolutely no reason at all, when he encountered a big mean forest cat by the name of Tigerpaw. Now, Tigerpaw’s mentor made a bad choice and was like, “GO HURT THAT RANDOM BABY CAT THERE NOW!” See, doesn’t that sound terrible? Yeah, well, Tigerpaw apparently didn’t have a single brain cell and obeyed his bad teacher and hurt Tiny. So Tiny was all like “ow” and he nearly died, right? So Tiny wanted to run back home but he remembered that his mean sister told him that unwanted kittens (including him) get thrown in the river. And Tiny did not want to be thrown in the river.
So Tiny moved and ran to this other Twolegplace, a Twolegplace with a bunch of bad cats. He did not have a great memory of clan cats due to Tigerpaw, Thistleclaw, and their bad choices. He also wanted to make himself seem more intimidating than he is so that the bad cats in this other Twolegplace wouldn’t pick on him and stuff. So commence the renaming of Tiny, in which Tiny becomes the one and only Scourge. After a series of events including Scourge scaring away a dog with his shadow, the bad cats in the Twolegplace are like “sheesh you’re pretty cool man” and then hail him as their leader.
Once Scourge noticed that the clans were named (nature thing)Clan, he made his little group into a ripoff clan named BloodClan. And thus, we arrive at book six of the Prophecy Begins, things happen, et cetera et cetera. Now, let’s see. Who is the villain of this story? Well, first we can identify Tigerpaw. Tigerpaw was a bully and decided to hurt Scourge so much that Scourge held a grudge against the Clans for the entirety of his life. If Tigerpaw hadn’t attacked Scourge, then maybe, even if he had become leader of BloodClan, he wouldn’t have been interested in taking over the Clans and so on, so forth.
But Tigerpaw isn’t the big villain of Scourge’s story, because even if Tigerpaw hadn’t attacked him, he still would have become the leader of BloodClan and done a bunch of bad stuff and hurt our dear Barley and company. So what stopped Scourge from returning home after being attacked by Tigerpaw? His siblings. Scourge’s siblings, Socks and Ruby, were terribly mean to him, telling him their housefolk would drown him in the river. Tiny, scared, had run into the forest, encountered Tigerpaw, didn’t return home because of aforementioned hypothetical drowning.
So yeah, this is all Socks and Ruby’s faults. If they had been normal, supportive, nice siblings to Tiny, who was tiny, then Tiny would still be a happy little kittypet, having his happily ever after as a normal housecat. Socks, Ruby—you may be kittypets, but you two nearly caused the destruction of the clans. Congratulations.

Can I just say that I love Sol? I absolutely love him. Supreme Warriors villain, who is a complex character and is manipulative instead of brutal, and has a backstory that can make us cry. But unfortunately today we won’t be getting to me picking away at Sol’s backstory and being like “Leafstar was seriously a jerk to him but also he’s a jerk too”, because I’m too lazy, and also I think that your eyeballs may be trembling in fear at this moment cos I wrote almost 1800 words already which isn’t that much but it looks like a lot on this device.
So I’m gonna end now. Spare you all. Maybe I’ll figure something out for a part two (unlikely, because my core strengths are procrastination and nonexistent initiative).
Hip hip hoorah.

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