Klaus Mikaelson sees every confrontation as being a war, which allows him to bend the rules as often as he wants. As he puts it, every war has its losses, and if everything is a war, then casualties are just part of the deal.
He is willing to kill whoever stands in his way and doesn’t see why his friends and family get so upset at the losses of those closest to them. Whether they were on his side, the enemy’s side, or were simply innocent bystanders, anyone who gets in the way of Klaus’s desires is destined to get hurt, at best, or be tormented, at worst.
He Doesn’t Believe In Good And Evil
“Over The Course Of My Life, I’ve Encountered No Shortage Of Those Who Would Presume To Speak Of Good And Evil. Such Terms Mean Nothing. People Do What Is In Their Best Interest.”
Morality hinges upon the understanding of the difference between right and wrong, and part of that is understanding that some things are truly evil, and cannot be redeemed. Klaus, however, doesn’t see things this way. In his world view, people will do what’s in their best interests, and the only difference between him and those who are ‘good’ is that it is advantageous to them to follow moral codes.
He Values His Time Over All Else
“There Is Not A Thing On This Earth That Will Matter Enough For Me To Waste Even Thirty More Seconds Of My Time.”
Klaus generally views himself as the only thing in the world that matters, which means he will quickly reject anybody who distracts him from his purpose. No matter how important something might be to others if it doesn’t directly impact him, he doesn’t see it as being worth his time.
This mindset is what causes Klaus both to do terrible things and to ignore rising evils. He doesn’t have the compassion and empathy that would enable him to help others.
He Expects Others To Be As Cruel As He Is
“When I Order Werewolves To Be Hunted To Extinction, I Expect You To Stand To The Side And Let The Blood Flow.”
Klaus made some terrible mistakes in his lifetime, and his decision to attack the werewolves was one of them. Despite feeling a kinship to werewolves, Klaus generally considers himself to be a vampire first. This enables him to do terrible things to the werewolf communities of Mystic Falls and New Orleans.
When his family and Hayley object, he puts them in their place. As far as he is concerned, he is the King of New Orleans, and his actions will be followed without question. Not only does he force his loved ones to go against their morals, but he shows that his love is conditional on obedience, which isn’t truly love at all.
He Is The King Of Threatening Comments
“If You Continue To Defy Me, Your Lives Will Be Reduced To An Unending Sequence Of Agonizing Torture.”
Klaus and the other Mikaelsons are terrific at making threats and are even better at making horrifying threats in the calmest tone imaginable. Not only does Klaus threaten to kill his enemies, but he thinks up the most unimaginable tortures for them.
He Fears Weakness
“There’s No Power In Love! Mercy Makes You Weak! Family Makes You Weak!”
While some fans think Klaus was a good guy because his actions were motivated by love, they ignore the fact that this goes against Klaus’s base instincts. When Klaus first finds out about his daughter, he is willing to let her and her mother die to not be tied down.
He Takes Pre-Emptive Action
“You Don’t Arm Yourself After War Has Been Declared. You Build Your Army So Big That No One Dares Pick The Fight.”
Klaus was one of the best villains on The Vampire Diaries, and a large part of this came from his extreme threat level. Until the arrival of the Originals, Mystic Falls mostly faced minor threats. When he arrived, he showed them what real power was and what happened to those who crossed him.
One of the big ways he did this was by taking pre-emptive action. As he says, it is foolish to approach a war without being prepared and armed in advance. Yet again, this is an example of him justifying his cruelty by claiming that he is at war, something which was objectively not true many of the times he claimed it.
He Takes Pleasure In Others’ Fear
“People Quake With Fear Because I Have The Power To Make Them Afraid.”
One of the most obvious signs that Klaus truly is a villain is that he enjoys other people fearing him. While he often finds ways to justify his actions, he just likes having people scared of him. It gives him a rush of power that makes him feel strong, in contrast to the fear he always felt when being attacked by his father.
He Justifies His Actions
“Is It Evil To Take What One Wants, To Satisfy Hunger Even If Doing So Will Cause Another Suffering? What Some Would Call Evil, I Believe To Be An Appropriate Response To A Harsh And Unfair World.”
Audiences were able to get a better look at Klaus’s mindset in The Originals than they were in The Vampire Diaries, but that doesn’t automatically make him a sympathetic character, and it certainly doesn’t make him a hero. He views the world as kill or be killed, and he has no problem being a killer.
Klaus is repeatedly called evil, an insult which he frequently rebuts with justifications. If the world is cruel, why shouldn’t he be? If he has to feed to survive, why should he concern himself with his meals? At the end of the day, however, it’s just another excuse to let him get away with hurting people.
He Sees Humans As Disposable
“End Of The Day Human Life Is Just A Means To An End. Our Means To Our End.”
On The Vampire Diaries, the audience is introduced to a cast of supernatural creatures that were raised among humans and were relatively recently transformed from a human state. Because of that, they valued their friends and family and empathized with other humans.
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