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Because of the holiday, there is an inherent sort of romanticism associated with the name "Valentine"[1] .

Writers will utilize this association to hint at the character's heroic roots. The Knight in Shining Armor named Valentine will do anything to win fair lady's hand, while an Anti-Hero or The Stoic may have the name in order to hint at his Hidden Heart of Gold. A girl with a Sugar and Ice Personality named Valentine will often become a Defrosting Ice Queen.

A Villain with the name "Valentine" is often a deliberate subversion on the audience's subconscious expectations, though they do often keep some level of tragic romanticism. They will often be a Well-Intentioned Extremist, or perhaps a Noble Demon or Worthy Opponent. Female villains may be The Vamp.

May or may not apply to slight variations (Valentino, Valentin, etc.) depending on their characterizaton.

A naming convention. Compare Cherry Blossom Girl and Alice Allusion.

Examples of Be My Valentine include:


Anime and Manga


Film

  • The grandfather in Spy Kids (played by Ricardo Montalban) is named Valentin Avellan.
  • Kevin Bacon played Valentine "Val" Mckee in Tremors.
  • Valentine from Mirror Mask isn't romanticized, but he does fit the "anti-hero with a heart of gold" type.
  • Gangster Eddie Valentine from The Rocketeer. Technically a bad guy, but throws his hat in with the heroes once he learns his employer is a two-bit Nazi.
  • Valentin Zukovsky is an ally of James Bond who isn't quite evil but not entirely good either.
  • Billy Ray Valentine in Trading Places


Literature

  • Valentine Wolfe, who never met a drug he didn't like, from Deathstalker.
  • Robert Heinlein's Stranger in A Strange Land has Valentine Michael Smith.
  • Valentine Wiggin from Ender's Game. Valentine is the sweet, empathetic-to-a-fault middle child. This stands in contrast with her brothers psychopath-but-he-grew-up-okay Peter "The Rock (Upon Whom I Found My Church)," Fisher Of Men, and the youngest practically-inhuman-empathy-and-perfect-warrior 'Ender,' properly Andrew, "brother of Peter", "he-who-insisted-on-being-crucified-on-an-X". You see, their father--the very-Catholic John Paul Wiggin[2]--gave them significant saints' names and secret baptisms, because Ender's Game was written at a time when Card seriously believed that Da Gubbamint might outlaw the practice of religion and succeed under the pretense of population control. This interacts annoyingly with The Great Politics Mess-Up, for reasons that have nothing to do with this trope.
  • The heroine of the very first of PG Wodehouse's "Blandings Castle" novels, Something Fresh (1915), was named Joan Valentine.
  • The real name of reformed safe-cracker Ralph Spencer in O. Henry's "A Retrieved Reformation" is Jimmy Valentine. (The story was filmed twice, in 1915 and in 1928, as Alias Jimmy Valentine.)
  • In G. K. Chesterton's "Father Brown" stories "The Blue Cross" and "The Secret Garden," Aristide Valentin [sic] is the Head of the Parisian police. He is also the murderer in the latter.
  • The main character of Robert Silverberg's Lord Valentine's Castle, and some but not all of the following books in the Majipoor series.
  • Mortal Engines has Thaddeus and his daughter Katherine.
  • Valentine de Villefort, the Proper Lady-like daughter of the Count's enemies in The Count of Monte Cristo
    • And her counterpart in the anime series Gankutsuou, based on The Count of Monte Cristo.
  • Valentine, one of the Two Gentlemen of Verona from the play of the same name by Shakespeare
  • Valentinian in Belisarius Series. He does not have a particularly romantic outlook on life.
  • Valentine Morgenstern in Cassandra Clare's Mortal Instruments series is not a nice person.


Live Action TV

  • Becca Valentine from Andromeda.
  • Sonya Valentine from Continuum.
  • Emily Valentine from Beverly Hills, 90210
  • Cat Valentine from Victorious.
  • Emma Valentine from The Wild Wild West episode "The Night of the Vicious Valentine". She's a villain who pretends to be a matchmaker to steal the inheritances of wealthy men. And she wears heart-themed clothing.


Music

  • "The Two Sides of Monsieur Valentine", by Spoon. The song is quite cryptic (and good!), but Monsieur Valentine is mentioned to have a "black heart machine".


Pro Wrestling

  • Greg "The Hammer" Valentine, son of Johnny Valentine.


Video Games


Web Original


Real Life

  • Once famous as the greatest lover in film, Rudolf Valentino.
  • The original Saint Valentine.

Notes

  1. The name actually derives from the Latin word for strength and capability: valens
  2. born Jan Paweł Wieczorek in Poland, and named after a famous 20th-century Pope both in-universe and out
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