The best movies have the best characters. Simple as that.
Take the Original and Prequel Star Wars trilogies as an example: None of the bad guys introduced in the Prequels ever came close to matching Vader's status as one of cinema's greatest villains, and Anakin, Obi Wan and Padme never replicated the effortless chemistry of Luke, Han and Leia.
Characters are the beating heart of a movie. Whether they're a one-movie wonder like Casablanca's Rick Blaine or a series mainstay like the MCU's Iron Man, great characters form an emotional bond with the audience that leaves us glad of the time we spent with them. So when these people do something to upset us, we take it personally.
In this list we'll take a look at the moments that, intentionally or not, caused the audience to turn on previously loved characters. Whether through moronic decision-making, moral depravity or simply bad writing, these are ten moments that made us channel our inner Bart Simpson and say “What happened, man? You used to be cool”.
10. Peter Parker - Dancing In The Street
Emo Parker - a montage so off-putting Sony themselves made fun of it it more than ten years later in the superb Into the Spider-Verse.
Everything about this scene seems designed to induce maximum levels of embarrassment in all who witness it, as if it were created by scientists who wanted to test if human bodies were physically capable of cringing themselves into a black hole of mortification. Watching Peter Parker strutting and dancing through New York city in Spider-Man 3 outdid any horror movie in its ability to make the audience watch a scene through the gaps in their fingers.
We liked Tobey Maguire's goofy, earnest take on Spider-Man. We felt Maguire brought the right amount of nerdish naïveté to the role, and watching him turn to the emo side just made us feel bad for him. It was like when the sweet, shy boy at school starts going to the gym and mistakenly believes he's now a sex symbol; all tank-tops, exaggerated macho dialogue and misplaced confidence.
The “What the Hell” looks the women give Peter are a clear indication we're not meant to like this new version of the character, but damn it Raimi, you didn't need to make him that big a prat.