The Generic Villain vs. The Evil Overlord List, Items 26-29

The Generic Villain continues a point-by-point facedown and update of that reference material of all baddies with imperial ambitions, The Evil Overlord List.

26. Think twice before ordering a prisoner sent to your bedchamber. …forget think twice, just plain don’t do it. One, even though it’s taken us years to get it, it’s never so much about lust as about power, and there are plenty of ways you can demonstrate your power that don’t generally involve you removing the portions of your armor that cover the most sensitive parts of your anatomy. Two, the things that does to your Dark and Gritty Quotient really aren’t worth the joy of a short roll in the hay. Three, they have an obnoxious habit of locating and commandeering whatever happens to be in your pocket, around your neck, or otherwise a whole lot more accessible while you’re making the tactical mistake of having your way with them. Four, if the issue is just sexual frustration, that is what hiring professionals and/or seducing minions is for. Honestly, people.

27. Never build only one of anything important; carry two fully loaded weapons. This. With the caveat that you should know exactly where your backup is at all times; it’s truly obnoxious when the protagonists go and swipe it, particularly if they use it against you later. Also, one of the weapons you carry (either as part of this rule, or in addition to it) should be one of the low-tech weapons stipulated in #23, with which you should be fully proficient. You get ambushed, you get disarmed, you go into an anti-magic field or get hit with an EMP or get technobabbled out of your good weapon, you’re still able to turn the tables on your opponent. Win-win.

28. Keep your pet monster in a secure cage from which it can’t escape and into which you can’t accidentally stumble. If your pet monster is prone to biting you, I recommend amending this to add “or reach out and attack something thrown against the cage” and making sure that you can neither accidentally stumble nor easily be thrown into it. Alternately, treat your pet monster well, make sure it actually likes you, and you’re unlikely to be ripped apart if you do end up in its cage—heck, in that case, the heroes will have to come into its cage to properly get rid of you. (Then again, my pet monster is a sugar glider whose greatest direct danger to me is ear-biting. Having pets that aren’t attack creatures bypasses this issue entirely.)

29. Dress in bright and cheery colors to throw enemies into confusion. Caveat here—as long as you aren’t dressed as a clown. Sometimes it seems to me like everybody who uses this trick immediately goes the evil jester route, and that’s been done to death at this point. I also suggest primary colors, since we’ve been branching a lot into secondary, and the heroes are starting to cotton on to that. Or pastels. When have you ever seen a Hand of Darkness whose theme wasn’t “Little girl creepy child/tykebomb” in pastels? If your schtick is stealth, you may just want to ignore this entirely—granted, if you’re good enough that you can sneak while wearing luminescent pink, the color will probably throw them off otherwise, but most of us aren’t, and overestimating your capabilities is a very bad idea.

1 comment

  1. UZ says:

    Bear in mind that our old friend Professor Hojo broke 26 and 28 at the same time and carried no weapons at all; the only reason why he died was because he decided to go rubber monster in the presence of the protagonists.

    See, as long as you’re an unarmed labcoat pansy the heroes can’t kill you without going all 90’s frowny face and they know they’ll pay for that in the future. In the meanwhile you can do just about anything (refer 26+28) as long as it can be played off as vaguely comical. Unfortunately this is the path to the clown shoes business referenced in 29.

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