Oct 18 2011

Villainous Brainstorming Forum

If you have any questions about developing your antagonists, ask here.  For example, if you wanted advice about how to have a smart villain take down your hero, you could give some description of your hero and your villain and then evil geniuses like me can help you plot.

38 responses so far

38 Responses to “Villainous Brainstorming Forum”

  1. Mynaon 18 Oct 2011 at 6:41 pm

    “Supervillains,You have displeased me FOR THE LAST TIME!” xDDD

    This is really helpful! I actually have a new villain I’m using for my NaNo novel, Notes From the End of the World (basically, a black hole appears at the edge of the Solar System, Earth has 20 years left before it is destroyed, and the novel is that countdown as chaos goes down in society.)

    There aren’t that many human villains, but one of them that appears early on is named Marknos. He’s about 18-19ish in the beginning of the story, and is a low member in a cult that’s starting to get power in the Southeast, the Zaltana Church of Cosmic Salvation. He’s obsessed with the cult, and gets the main character involved with it. As Marknos moves up in the order, he steadily gains more power and influence, and the Zaltana Church becomes a serious driving force in the South. When the original leader of the church is assassinated, Marknos (now 20something) takes over. Then he starts to lose it.

    I’m trying to figure out more of his goals and motivations at the moment. Obviously he wants to work with the church, but why? Why does he want its influence to spread? That kinda stuff. I don’t want to go with “CAUSE THAT GIVES HIM POWER AND POWER IS FUN YAYY!” but I don’t know enough about cults to think up a more distinct answer. (I have my research cut out for me.) Obviously he believes in this whole salvation business (I have part of the Zaltana philosophy already figured out) but I can’t quite figure out if Marknos wants to lead others to salvation, lead only his churchmembers to salvation and spite the rest, or what. What would make sense? o.o;; Also, any other ideas for this char?

    …that was a long reply but yeah.


  2. B. McKenzieon 18 Oct 2011 at 7:06 pm

    I really like that ticking clock scenario. It reminds me of The Children of Men.

    “Obviously he wants to work with the church, but why? Why does he want its influence to spread?” With a scenario like this, where everybody is pretty much guaranteed to die in 20 years, I think he’d be thinking about saving as many people as possible and maybe that means dealing with “obstacles” to saving as many people as possible (other religions, perhaps?). If it’s a regular religion, saving people would probably mean preparing them for religious salvation (i.e. an ideal afterlife). If it’s a cult, they may have convinced themselves that their religious beliefs will spare them from the devastation in 20 years. (It might help if the devastation that will happen in 20 years is more along the lines of something like a post-apocalyptic wasteland than something that will definitely kill 100% of humanity–it’ll be easier to convince people that they might be saved in this lifetime).

    When doomsday approaches, people can sometimes do and/or be convinced to do some really screwy things. For example, the Black Plague convinced many thousands of people to join the Flagellants, a movement committed to purifying oneself with a whip.

    People that feel helpless (or, worse, are helpless) are vulnerable to charismatic people that claim to have the answers (and frequently truly believe they have the answers).

    Alternately, if the Earth is 100% doomed, he may be marshaling resources for a colonization project to save a few of his most devoted followers. He’s going to need BILLIONS of dollars and many years of preparation to get even 10,000 people to Mars*, and to get billions of dollars of donations, he’ll probably want many millions of followers.

    *Well, some other planet, probably. Mars would probably be destroyed as well by the disaster. Alternately, if you wanted to work with Mars, you could just replace the disaster you have right now with a doomsday meteor scheduled to hit in 20 years.

  3. EvilpixieAon 18 Oct 2011 at 11:54 pm

    Villains, I find, are amazing creatures and the driving force of my stories.

    Recently I have started working on what will probably be a web-comic. There is still a lot of brainstorming going on and the first chapter is written and currently being drawn. Character wise, the line between good and evil is sharp enough to draw blood and a number of characters seem to be tap dancing between antagonists, anti-heroes and even heroes.

    Firstly, is this a problem?

    Secondly, the founder of the group of heroes is closer to villain than not and doesn’t try too hard to hide it. Those following him are doing so out of desperation and a hunger to have what he promises to give.

    Is this a problem?

    Finally. I’m more used to writing movie and short film scripts than graphic novel and comic book. In the movie making world we define villains as those that accept the comfortable lie, and heroes as those that go on to discover the uncomfortable truth. Does that carry over into this genre of writing?

  4. Indigoon 19 Oct 2011 at 12:04 am

    What exactly do you mean by the comfortable lie and the uncomfortable truth? Would you mind clarifying that? Thanks 🙂

  5. Damzoon 19 Oct 2011 at 10:25 am

    Is this a good motive for a villain? His wife is killed in some way by the protagonist’s brother by an order by the government.

  6. Indigoon 19 Oct 2011 at 11:22 am

    I think that’s a completely justifiable reason to motivate a villain…will the villain go after the government, the protagonist, or the brother? Or all of the above?

  7. CCOlsonon 19 Oct 2011 at 12:14 pm

    You’ll find an excellent villain with a similar motivation in the movie “Law Abiding Citizen”, though in that case it is a miscarriage of justice issue.

    Why did the government order the wife killed? Could she have been brought in for trial instead?

    Was the protagonist’s brother carrying out an unjust or a just order in killing the wife? Did he have any other choice in how he could carry out his orders?

    Does this government normally give orders like this?

    What does the villain intend to do about the murder of his wife?

  8. Wingson 19 Oct 2011 at 4:30 pm

    I’m having a bit of trouble with a new anti-villain, Omega. He’s an Iron Man type, a technopath with the ability to act as a living battery for his machines. However, he’s not a mutant, rceiving his abiltities in an accident later in life (I’m not even sure if this universe has mutants).

    In constrast to his archnemeis (Ace, a book dumb but resoundingly not stupid ex-pro quarterback who, ater a reckless drunk driving accident which cost him a ruined leg, turned to a mysterious pharmaceutical-making company attempting to test a revolutionary new medication for the paralyzed, supposedly undoing the damage – however, it instead gave him super strength and moderate invulnerability*. He’s since been contracted by the government to combat Omega directly, and is generally a nice guy.), Omega is icily calculating and a mechanical genius.

    The question is, just why is Omega so against the government in the first place, and how did he wind up in the accident which gave him his powers? My placeholder reasoning was that his corrupt college professor planned to steal his innovations after manuacturing an accient which would hopefully kill Omega, or at least pin the error on him. However, I don’t like this. I need a plausible reason for my villain to be taking out government labs, and how he got his powers should be somehow tied to this (Equipment malunction of some sort, maybe).


    – Wings

    *Of course, this isn’t a coincidence. The paralysis-medication thing was just a front for the government to “accidentally” create a supersoldier to defend their research facilities from Omega.

  9. CCOlsonon 19 Oct 2011 at 5:53 pm

    First question: If you can knowingly create 1 supersoldier, why don’t you create 1,000? Militaries are all about having multiples.

    Second question: Why wouldn’t Omega want to take down the government? Most governments are horribly corrupt. 😉

    But seriously, if he’s truly a brilliant inventor then perhaps the government stole his inventions or protected/decided in favor of a powerful, rich military contractor who stole Omega’s inventions. In this case the government would be complicit in the destruction of Omega’s life and the theft of his intellectual property, which to many inventors would feel like a horrific violation.

    Thus, Omega would have just cause for waging a campaign against this corrupt government or military contractor. He just chooses unjust means for doing it.

  10. EvilpixieAon 20 Oct 2011 at 3:18 am


    Me being a media student I’m going to answer this as it relates to script and movies because I don’t know how much it connects to different types of writing.

    Every movie goes through a bunch of phases: hook, ordinary life, catalyst, changed life, choice, rising action, climax, resolution. This shows the journey of the hero.

    A ‘hero’ will choose to do the noble thing when they arrive at the ‘choice’ stage in the movie. Generally this choice is between a comfortable lie and to continue and seek an uncomfortable truth. Villains in movies will have at some point (or at the same time as the hero) go through these same stages but instead of advancing on they choose the comfortable lie.

    I don’t know if I explained it well.

  11. Wingson 21 Oct 2011 at 3:36 pm


    The organization was hoping that they’d have more than one survivor after they tested the serum. Thankfully, the one success was easy enough to keep under control. He’s just the beginning.

    Omega’s new backstory: A brilliant but detached inventor, Omega’s first public exhibition of his creations was interrupted abruptly by a bizarre accident which left him in a coma for several months. When he woke up, he discovered two things: a) that the company he had been in partnership with has stolen his designs and passed them off as their own, and b) that machines are behaving oddly, responding to him and functioning without any apparent power source. As a broke, possibly brain damaged college dropout, he hasn’t got much of a chance to fight back legally. Therefore, the only course of action involves building a mechanical exoskeleton powered by his newfound abilities and attacking the labs, taking his discoveries back piece by piece.

    I really want to like Omega more, considering the amount of favoritism I’ve heaped upon his archnemesis, Ace*. This definitely helps. Thanks~!

    – Wings

    *Would discuss him here too, but that’s a topic for a hero brainstorming forum. Wrong place.

  12. CCOlsonon 21 Oct 2011 at 4:01 pm

    If you invest in making Omega an anti-villain (see: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/AntiVillain ) then that gives you a unique opportunity to explore the boundaries between just and unjust, legal and illegal.

    For Omega’s methods, consider that his control over machines allows him to attack remotely. If you do go with the robot-mastermind methodology, actually finding him and stopping him would require a considerable amount of detective work.

    Just as a note on Ace, if Ace works for a government organization that is entangled with this corrupt corporation in some way, then he will be faced with a very interesting moral situation, allowing for additional heroism or corruption in your characterization of him.

    Again I thoroughly recommend you watch Law Abiding Citizen if you haven’t already seen it. It will give you ideas.

  13. anatomylasson 22 Oct 2011 at 4:49 am

    Hi everyone!
    What reason would my villain have to make a young clone of herself? Could you please help me think of one?

  14. CCOlsonon 22 Oct 2011 at 10:16 am

    Anatomylass, a little more information would be useful in answering that question.

    Such as,

    What type of Villain is she? What is her normal mode of operation?

    What is her major goal? (conquer country, conquer world, exact revenge, meddle in God’s domain without care for moral boundaries, etc.)

    What forces does she have opposing her?

    Remember that a person’s reasons for what they do are bound up in who they are.

  15. trill_gutterbugon 30 Oct 2011 at 3:03 pm

    (Sorry in advance for the tl;dr!)

    Hi! What an awesome site; it’s been indispensable to me over the past week. 😀 I’m doing NaNoWriMo this year, so I’ve only got a day and a bit to finish plotting my novel, and I’ve hit a snag.

    I have two main characters: a goody two-shoes superhero (as yet unnamed), and a morally nihilistic anti-villain (also unnamed). They operate on different sides, initially; the superhero with a team of like-minded, multi-talented do-gooders, and the ‘villain’ in a secret lab of his own devising, amassing a respectable army of minions and gruesome experiments. Throughout the story, I intend to have them act upon each others’ ideologies. The superhero will become a little less naive and begin to see humanity’s unpleasant side, and the villain will realize that the Golden Rule doesn’t require any saccharine religious context to be a viable life philosophy. They will eventually work together and become partners (and romantic interests).

    Here’s my problem: I need some overarching nemesis to draw them together. For the hero, pretty much any Big Bad will inspire him to launch the good crusade, but I need my anti-villain to also be inspired into fighting this common enemy. Because my own ideological leanings are very similar to the villain already, I’ve been trying to imagine the sorts of things I would find objectionable enough to do battle against. While, personally, I would object to a Hitler persona, or a wholesale devastation of the planet, my villain is very invested in scientific advancement, at nearly any cost. At the point this conflict must begin, I don’t think he would put any great effort into stopping a Hitler-esque individual; he would step back, wince at the hideous cruelty, but sneak into the Nazi’s labs at night to steal their experimental data.

    In this case, my best bet would be something that would either destroy a very large portion of the earth’s population (although, because he’s also concerned with the over-population crisis, a mere 50-60% fatality rate probably wouldn’t faze him), or do permanent damage to the planet itself. After all, he still needs minions and a place to live.

    A zombie plague outbreak would probably wake him up, but I’m not sure if I want to mix genres to that extent (zombies have a very special place in my left ventricle, and I’d like to dedicate a separate book entirely to them). Does anyone have any ideas for something like this? Individual enemies (Dr. Nastypants, etc), or faceless threats (asteroid hurtling toward the planet, and so on) are both on the table. No idea is too small or too silly to suggest!

  16. B. McKenzieon 30 Oct 2011 at 4:53 pm

    –“I have two main characters: a goody two-shoes superhero…” I’m not necessarily opposed to relatively pure characters, but I would recommend giving the character style and personality besides just being morally pure.

    –“They will eventually work together and become partners (and romantic interests).” Hmm, okay. I’m not a master of romance by any stretch, so take this with a huge grain of salt. My initial impression is that they don’t sound like they have much romantic compatibility besides working in the same field. (Like a Hollywood romance?) I’m not sure what you have in mind for a resolution here, but it might feel more believable to avoid a fairy tale ending for this romance where they live happily ever after.

    –“Because my own ideological leanings are very similar to the villain already, I’ve been trying to imagine the sorts of things I would find objectionable enough to do battle against. While, personally, I would object to a Hitler persona, or a wholesale devastation of the planet, my villain is very invested in scientific advancement, at nearly any cost. At the point this conflict must begin, I don’t think he would put any great effort into stopping a Hitler-esque individual; he would step back, wince at the hideous cruelty, but sneak into the Nazi’s labs at night to steal their experimental data.” One possibility is that the villain is doing the same to him (stealing his research and/or generally getting in his way). Alternately, the true villain might try to axe the anti-villain because he’s one of the only scientists in the world that is skilled enough to stop him. (He might have offered the anti-villain a lieutenant position first–preemptively killing supervillains might not be the easiest way to build an empire of villainy).

    –An environmentally-themed villain might try something like a zombie virus to destroy humanity and prevent it from further contaminating the environment. (Viruses are the Earth’s antibodies, the villain might reason). Alternately, if you’d like to make it more complicated for the hero, maybe the issue is something more personal for the villains. It’s easy enough for a hero to get involved when the issue is an evil villain vs. bajillions of innocents, but what if the conflict is something more along the lines of one evil villain vs. a slightly less evil anti-villain? How does the anti-villain convince the hero to help him, and how desperate does the anti-villain have to be to turn to his one-time nemesis for help?

  17. Indigoon 31 Oct 2011 at 4:59 pm


    Wow, I’d really like to read this story! It sounds like a fresh spin on a superhero story-I think it’s much more interesting when a slightly less evil villain battles a more evil villain with the hero’s help.

    Good luck on your story 🙂

  18. coldshadow25on 12 Dec 2011 at 6:02 pm

    Hello I am an author who wrote a superhero story but need help with the villain. The initial book is good but I do find the villain to be lackin any real story hus background is half assed he’s in the book maybe. He has plenty of scenes but they’re pretty much all the same type…I want to be able to really connect the hero and villain but not sure how…nit to mention I have to change his name the original was Master Kahn but marvel already has one so I need a fresh name. His powers consist of using dark and shadow to use as weapons as he can morph anything out of shadow think green lnterns power ring something similar. I appreciate anyones help thanks.

  19. YellowJujuon 22 May 2012 at 9:43 pm

    How do I show my villain slowly going insane over the course of my story?

  20. aharrison 23 May 2012 at 7:53 pm


    It sounds to me like what your villain needs is something of a “crisis of faith” event. I don’t mean that in a religious sense, but in a personal sense. Your villain may need to have some kind of encounter or complication that challenges one or more of her deeply held personal beliefs in a manner that could cause her to shift her moral foundations ever so slightly to allow her to take up the fight in a way you need her to.

    You say there wouldn’t be any effort to stop a Mengele set of experiments? Perhaps this allows for something truly hideous to happen to someone your villain does happen to care about (even the most morally challenged villains tend to have people they care about), and she’s forced to confront the costs of her apathy and realize that what she’s seeing will only get far worse.

    You say she believes that there are too many people and culling the population will only be to the Greater Good? Well, IME, people who say that generally don’t count themselves as part of the population that needs to be culled. Put her neck on the line no matter what with the impending armageddon and see how quickly she might “shift” her moral stance. Survival is a great redeemer!

  21. Feign Smileon 02 Jul 2012 at 10:22 am

    I’m having an issue with my villain. He was originally on the same team as my heroes. They were all trying to stop an alien invasion but after seeing the raw power of this invading force he believes that they will undoubtedly win which makes him defect to their side.

    Now in the climatic battle he faces off against his once allies who he is stronger than. What reason would I have for him not killing them after he defeats them in a battle of superpowers? Specifically he controls magnetism while the other have the ability to control the element of earth.

    His personality is more manipulative, ruthless, and psychotic. I could really use some help.

  22. Janon 02 Jul 2012 at 10:38 am

    If he is mentally unstable, he could have a brain lapse or hallucination that makes him spare them, or if he’s just crazy, the others could somehow convince him that they’re all on the same side for a few minutes until everyone can get away, or maybe the villians’s cohorts don’t want to tangle with the heroes and tell him to leave them.

  23. B. McKenzieon 02 Jul 2012 at 11:27 am

    “His personality is more manipulative, ruthless, and psychotic. I could really use some help.” Some possibilities:

    1) The fight might resolve in such a way that the villain reasonably believes that the hero is dead. For example, if he stabs the hero near the heart with a metal shard and the hero falls into a chasm, he could reasonably infer that the hero is likely to bleed out BUT it would be needlessly dangerous to go down after him to verify that the hero is dying. If his options are fighting a dying earth-themed hero in a chasm and just waiting for the hero to bleed to death out of sight, he might think it was much safer to wait and check later. Given that this villain signed up with the aliens to save himself, I would infer that he’s much more into self-preservation than courage–he doesn’t have much to gain by engaging a dying hero on his turf, does he?

    2) Thinking in terms of manipulation, leaving the hero alive might be his best plan at keeping himself alive if the aliens DON’T win.

    3) If he’s psychotic, he might be sadistic enough to inflict a fate-worse-than-death. Maybe he uses alien technology to drain the hero’s superpowers and leaves the hero alive because the villain wants his former teammate to see him (and perhaps secondarily the aliens) win. This would probably be more believable if he had a preexisting grudge against this hero. Perhaps this hero had previously bested one of his manipulative schemes and/or was better liked by the team because he had a more reliable, likable personality?

    4) The villain goes in for the kill, but the hero escapes or successfully fakes his own death. In this case, I think it would REALLY help if the hero loses something important in the process (because otherwise there wouldn’t be any stakes to losing the battle). For example, maybe the hero takes a major injury, or abandons a critical MacGuffin (like a critical technological device, a city or a critical bystander) in his desperate escape. (“We’re glad you survived, Earth Man, but we were REALLY counting on you to keep that psycho out of Pittsburgh. We lost contact with Checkpoints Charlie and Omega ten minutes after you ran”).

  24. Draxon 28 Aug 2012 at 10:10 pm

    I want to write a novel about a hero with telekinesis and I can’t think of a good power for a villain. The villain is unrelated to the hero’s secret identity and finds out about the hero at the same time as the general public.

  25. M. Happenstanceon 28 Aug 2012 at 10:39 pm

    Forcefields might prove interesting when fighting a telekinetic hero. It’s possible to use the offensively too – and the hero won’t be able to shield himself from them with his powers as he could from a physical object. It’s close enough to parallel the hero’s abilities, but different enough to make for some interesting fights.

  26. Draxon 29 Aug 2012 at 11:24 am

    That sounds good. That way, the villains power can be completely technological, so I can make him power-hungry with a plan. It also ties in somewhat with my hero’s origin story. Thanks.

  27. aharrison 31 Aug 2012 at 12:31 pm

    I need some suggestions with a situation. I have a supervillain who controls radiation. During the build-up to my part II finale (grand finale), he releases some specific bursts of hard radiation into some random crowds of people replicating the effects of the core critical accidents that claimed Daughlian and Slotin. Random people start showing up with various stages of acute radiation sickness, some die, some recover. The first time this happens, they have no idea that they are dealing with a metahuman, and there’s nothing to suggest what caused the incident beyond a large dose of radiation. For the second incident, they will be able to finally link all the victims together to one area (like a bus) where they had to have received their exposure and a possible video camera that will tip them off to their perpetrator.

    My problem is that I need a place for the first round of victims to randomly come together where they will not be easily tracked back. It needs to be a place where, if you were asked to recount your day, you wouldn’t necessarily mention this as part of it which pretty much rules out mass transit (I road the bus to work). If I were using a city like New York, I’d say they got nailed on the street walking, but my setting is a Gulf Coast city that’s a cross between Miami and New Orleans, and in my experience, there just aren’t a ton of pedestrians. Maybe the beach although people don’t tend to clump up on the beach, it would be mentioned but there aren’t security cameras.

    My husband suggested that my mastermind villain might arrange for a bottleneck, and that’s the best idea I have to go on so far.

  28. B. Macon 31 Aug 2012 at 12:55 pm

    “My problem is that I need a place for the first round of victims to randomly come together where they will not be easily tracked back.” Some possibilities: any food stand (e.g. hot dogs), a street performer drawing a crowd, or a metahuman dosing people with radiation at a red light traffic intersection, a beach, etc.

    PS: The Latin Quarter in New Orleans is notably pedestrian-friendly. I’ve heard this is especially true during festivals–when roads have been closed off, it’s very hard to drive anywhere.

  29. Sam Hon 01 Jan 2013 at 2:26 am

    I’m looking for a sci-fi villain that I can have be an overarching, behind the scenes until the last moment villain, who could be evil enough to try to kill humans as a goal. I’m looking for them to be thematically opposed to the “better living via science” views of the heroes. The obstacles under this villain’s control tend to be scientific though. How do I reconcile this?

  30. crescon 01 Jan 2013 at 10:17 am

    Okay weird analogy.

    Mick Foley, now a retired pro wrestler, was known for his violent matches involving weapons. At one point he went from being a fan favorite to a villian. His philosophy became “I hate violence, so I’m going to use violence to stop violent people.”

    He basically beat the heck out of “hardcore” wrestlers in an effort to end their careers.

    So maybe your villian hates science, but isn’t above using it against his enemies. Perhaps he is a third party that manipulates 2 science heavy factions into fighting each other. As they weaken each other his non-science movement becomes that much stronger.

  31. B. McKenzieon 01 Jan 2013 at 12:22 pm

    “I’m looking for a sci-fi villain that I can have be an overarching, behind the scenes until the last moment villain, who could be evil enough to try to kill humans as a goal. I’m looking for them to be thematically opposed to the “better living via science” views of the heroes. The obstacles under this villain’s control tend to be scientific though. How do I reconcile this?” The first thing that comes to mind is that the villain views humans as a virus (e.g. Agent Smith in The Matrix) or as an environmental blight (e.g. ecoterrorists).

    Alternately, perhaps the character is a scientist who, for whatever reason, is terrified of the future (e.g. perhaps because he and/or the protagonists are on the verge of some epochal technological breakthrough which he does not think humanity can safely handle) and thinks that destroying humanity is necessary to accomplish some greater goal (e.g. saving the universe). Alternately, perhaps the character is in league with malevolent non-humans. He’s SO enamored of their culture(s)/society(ies) that he chooses to eliminate their main threat.

  32. BWSon 15 Oct 2015 at 10:51 pm

    I’m planning a villain who honestly believes that he is doing what’s best for society. He thinks the best plan is complete control of powered humans. I’m planning on him being powered and that’s the reason he thinks that powered humans should be controlled.
    I was just wondering what you thought about the idea

  33. Cat-vacuumer Supremeon 18 Nov 2016 at 10:22 am

    It sounds good, but if he’s powered, than does he really want powered humans controlled/restricted?

  34. Cat-vacuumer Supremeon 18 Nov 2016 at 5:42 pm

    I want to know if this sounds like a workable backstory/motivation for a villain: when he was in third grade Joel Tocio’s mother (a fairy) died of magic-related cancer, and his father (human) went insane, trying to learn necromancy to talk to his mother or bring her back. One day, his father thinks he’s found the answer: sacrificing Joel. His father is about to stab him, and Joel unthinkingly lashes out with his magic, killing his father. From this moment on, Joel is against magic and thinks that magic users are subhuman. He never uses magic again, cuts off his own wings, and justifies not committing suicide by thinking that someone has to keep the secret community of magic users in check, slowly laying a trap to a) kill them all or b) put them in their place. He passes his hatred down to his children, grandchildren, and some of his most trusted friends (he has no other family).

  35. B. McKenzieon 18 Nov 2016 at 8:03 pm

    “I want to know if this sounds like a workable backstory/motivation for a villain…” It sounds very promising.

  36. Belle Sharpon 08 May 2019 at 8:15 am

    I’ve got an idea for a villain nicknamed Judgement.

    He’s more of a well-intentioned extremist than an actual villain. He believes that the heroes aren’t doing enough, but he does respect them for at least trying to protect people. He hates it when people use kids in their wars, so he despises the sidekick program the heroes have going on. He keeps his son out of his villainous work, although he does train him to keep him from blowing too many things up.

    Judgement’s nemesis is Marvelous, an egotistical hero who embodies everything Judgement fights against. Marvelous recently acquired a powerful new sidekick who he’s been neglecting, which sets off Judgement’s latest reign of terror. Judgement plans on doing everything he can to get the sidekick, Poltergeist, out of Marvelous’ hands.

    What do you think of this villain? Is he realistic for a YA novel WIP? What should I work on with him?

  37. Ujjwal bhargavon 08 May 2019 at 8:28 am

    I’m not something too much
    I’d like to say a thing or two
    Your villian doesn’t sounds much bad
    Unless youve planned that he’ll endanger city or normal people for his intention , other than that he’s like the active protagonist
    Here, your hero sounds like villain so writing it down will be something interesting and unique
    Like your villian here is the protagonist of the story who’s fighting your hero(antagonist) because of his inner flaw
    It can give you a very unique ending of story
    Hope this helps and mind if I wasn’t able to understand it 😊

  38. B. McKenzieon 08 May 2019 at 7:27 pm

    “He’s more of a well-intentioned extremist than an actual villain. He believes that the heroes aren’t doing enough, but he does respect them for at least trying to protect people…” It sounds like a more interesting premise for a relationship than the sidekick will probably have with Marvelous. I’m guessing this probably won’t be an issue, but I’d suggest developing the antagonist as at least potentially dangerous in context (even if quiet or diplomatic about it) to raise the stakes. It might help to build up to something bigger than a neglectful boss-sidekick relationship for him to respond to, though. Maybe the superhero Marvelous’s skill set and/or powers have allowed him to succeed even though he’s awful at something critically important to most other superheroes.

    For example, someone like Superman would probably be a terrible teammate/mentor for Robin because Superman is very tactically sloppy and a bit of an idiot on personal caution (e.g. in Batman vs. Superman he lets Batman shoot him in the face with a grenade without considering that this unknown weapon from a master adversary might actually be dangerous). These traits are not a huge problem for Superman because he really IS that indestructible*, but someone like Superman would not be able to teach Robin what he needs to survive with his skillset (e.g. situational awareness, melee skills more advanced than flying into people really fast, how to outmaneuver people without relying on superspeed, how to conduct surveillance without super-senses, advanced piloting skills, etc).

    (In addition, the cases that interest Superman the most would tend to be bad training exercises for Robin. I imagine there’d be a fair bit of “another villain with major superpowers, you better handle crowd control” situations or watching as Superman undoes a catastrophic flood by flying counter-clockwise or something. Not the best preparation for Robin to eventually succeed on his own).

    Conversely, you can easily draw up Batman having a terrible partnership with pretty much anybody in the DCU (partly why he’s the most valuable character in the DCU), but I think he’d be particularly unforgiving to a running/flying brick character (like The Hulk) or anyone who tends to cause a lot of collateral damage. (On personality, he’d probably be pretty rough on snowflakes too — he’s seen a lot of things and lost a lot of people, and it’s probably going to be harder to earn his trust/respect to handle major parts of his cases than pretty much anybody on the planet).

    *Though it may be a problem for the people around Superman. E.g. in Man of Steel, a smarter hero might have been tried drawing Zod away from the city to reduce collateral damage. Superman knew that he was one of Zod’s primary objectives and a more creative character might have been able to exploit that to save the city.

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