|“||All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.||„|
|~ Napoeleon's 7th commandment, Animal Farm|
Villains who champion the political philosophy of Communism such as those found in the former Soviet Union. Communism is the belief that class systems must be abolished, making everyone truly "Equal". These individuals abused the ideas of this philosophy in order to achieve their own goals and thus became a threat. During the Cold War and subsequent years after the fall of the Soviet Union, Communists were depicted as evil and power-hungry, especially in american media, but this stereotype has become less common in recent times.
IMPORTANT NOTE: like all political ideals, Communism itself is not inherently evil, the type we deal with on this wiki is "Stalinists" thought, which introduced totalitarian elements to it, under these altered laws dictators such as the titular Stalin were able to turn Communism into a tool for conquest and oppression, do not assume every Communist in fiction is automatically "bad", only those that use it to abuse others.
Dirty Communists are, essentially, Cold War-era villainous portrayals of the Soviet Union's people. After World War II, there was a very large effort to make them stock villains the same way Those Wacky Nazis were and still are. Special attention is brought to emphasizing all those wacky tropes found in Glorious Mother Russia.
Although Dirty Commies reached its height with the Cold War, the trope began at the turn of the 20th Century as communism and anarchism began to take root in the capitalist powers. Indeed, even before that, the title "The Communist Manifesto" itself was an ironic attack on Europe's fear of "communism," at the time meaning a return to loosely-allied city-states. Given the fact that the Soviet leadership was often tremendously paranoid and ran large-scale systems of political repression and censorship, the Soviet government's reputation in the west is bound to be very negative. This trope, however, is for when the previously mentioned evils of the Soviet Union are caricatured or used for comedic purposes (as pictured), or when Communists are shown carrying out their policies For the Evulz rather than out of expediency or misguided idealism. With the end of the Cold War, this has become a mostly Dead Horse Trope, though it oddly has a lot more universal success with Post-Soviet villains than it has ever had with actual Communist ones. Related to Red Scare. It remains a significant legacy trope that many authors still use.
See Red China for a similar trope dealing with that other Communist power. Contrast Chummy Commies. Tropes commonly associated with Dirty Communists are:
- The Baroness
- Commissar Cap
- Commie Land
- Commie Nazis
- Day of the Jackboot
- Deep Cover Agent
- Defector from Commie Land
- Fake Russian
- General Ripper
- Glorious Mother Russia
- The Great Politics Mess-Up ...after the Cold War.
- Hammer and Sickle
- Hammer and Sickle Removed for Your Protection
- Nuke 'em
- A Nuclear Error
- The Political Officer
- Red Scare
- Reporting Names
- Secret Police
- Soviet Superscience
- When Harry Met Svetlana
- Why We Are Bummed Communism Fell