An LGBT character is shown as an antagonist, especially when the “evil” story-line is associated or parallel to the character exploring their sexuality. For decades, villain was the only role LGBT+ characters were allowed to play in mainstream media, and it still crops up uncomfortably often as creators perpetuate those same ideas, even unintentionally. Historically, LGBT+ characters have not been allowed happy endings. Once mandated by the broadcasting standards Hayes Code, “deviant” characters (including all LGBT+ characters) must not be made sympathetic or rewarded, and narrative punishment for this behavior remains pervasive even now that mainstream attitudes and laws have changed.
The villain or antagonist role can range from extreme cold blooded murderer to ‘only’ being terribly manipulative and emotionless, yet the common denominator is the character being portrayed as having no standards or morals. In some cases the evil nature is revealed alongside their non-heterosexual identity, further linking the character’s orientation to their bad character.