As supervillain programmes move, taking over “the worlds” builds perfect sense. We’d do it ourselves if running things didn’t seem like such a pain in the ass. But a supervillain plan to destroy the world( or society) is idiotic by default because, well, where are they going to live?

Yet not only is this kind of scheme common in movies, but you could also argue that it’s common in real life too( sorry, we’ll try to keep the Trump talk to a minimum ). This is why Richmond Valentine, aka Samuel L. Jackson’s ludicrous character in Kingsman: The Secret Service , is the fifth bad guy we’re taking down in our weeklong series “Wait, What Was Their Programme Again? “

The Great Culling Of Society

Jackson play-acts Valentine as a combination of Russell Simmons, Mark Zuckerberg, Justin Bieber, and Sylvester the Cat.

20 th Century Fox
Like Jesse Eisenberg’s Lex Luthor, but entertaining to watch .

His flavor of “destroy the world” scheme is to kill all of the person or persons but leave the stuff intact. Some rogues move the weaponized virus itinerary( like in 12 Monkeys ), but Valentine’s master plan is to hand out a free SIM card to every citizen on Earth, which will then broadcast a signal that will make them murder one another. Valentine provides a select group of elites with exemption from the signal so that when all is said and done, the Earth will be rid of everyone except for his pals and, uh, the peasants who are the absolute best at murdering? Already we’re determining some flaws.

Anyway, Valentine is an environmentalist, and ascertains this culling of the human race as a good way to oppose global warming. Which makes perfect appreciation, because if we don’t do anything about it, a bunch of people will die. The plot is similar to something an old-school Bond villain would try (< i> Kingsman has become a pseudo-parody of old-school James Bond, back when the series involved more jetpacks and less brooding ). Sure enough, in Moonraker , Hugo “Best Villain Name Ever” Drax is a multi-billionaire businessman whose rather straightforward programme is to select a few dozen genetically perfect humans, stash them onboard a space station, then wipe out all of humanity with the power of orchids so that his band of beautiful people can repopulate the globe as a lord race.

Eon Productions
Presumably, his manner mentor, Kim Jong-il, was one of those who were spared .

But these guys have plenty of corporation. In X2 , Magneto briefly tries to kill all non-mutants on Earth. In Transformers: Dark Of The Moon , Patrick Dempsey’s character decides to help the Decepticons lay waste to the Earth in exchange for … what? A occupation in their organization? A mansion amongst the ruins? Hmm, we’re starting to see another problem.

Wait, What Was Their Programme Again?

What we’re about to say may seem obvious at first, but bear with us: The weird mistake that villains like Valentine and Drax induce is one real people build every day. Your boss might be inducing it right now. Let’s take a look at Valentine’s gigantic secret mountain base 😛 TAGEND

20 th Century Fox

Look at that shit! It’s the size of a small city. We bet it took a lot of common folk to dig all that out, and even more to run the cement, build the structure, and install the wiring and plumbing. We bet it takes even more people to oversee the garbage, service the climate control, do everyday repairs, and kill the rats. Then it takes literally thousands of additional people to grow the grain, create the livestock, mine the minerals, and manufacture the hundreds of consumer goods humen need to survive, from toothpaste to antibiotics. Hell, look at that picture of Valentine earlier and count the sheer number of working-class nobodies it took to fabrication his eyeglasses, baseball cap, shirt, jacket, wristwatch, microphone …

So who’s going to attain that shit once all of the filthy common people have been wiped out? None of these scoundrels opt the tiny remainder of the population-to-be based on anything practical — like, say, who can grow crops or design and repair infrastructure. Valentine’s small-scale collection of royal Eurotrash, oil heirs, and trust fund nitwits would probably be even more useless than Drax’s orbiting ubermensches and superfraus.

They now all have to go back to the Stone Age in terms of modern conveniences, simply with the peoples of the territories least likely to be useful in that situation. They likely thought to save some surgeons, but can they manufacture their own tools or brew their own pharmaceuticals?( Note: You should probably be suspicious of any doctor who does this .) Even if Valentine genuinely was such a committed environmentalist that he’s willing to accept a future of toiling in battlegrounds and rampant diarrhea, who among the survivors is equipped to live like that?

In the cases of both Valentine and Drax, we have people smart enough to construct billions of dollars and engineer massive space-age supervillain lairs, but too dumb to realize their afternoon wine and cheese is the fruit of mindbogglingly complex render chains involving billions of people who don’t smell great at the end of the day. So that component is actually somewhat realistic.

There’s A Little Valentine In All Of Us

When confronting these scoundrels, it’s always on moral “You shouldn’t kill people for being imperfect! ” grounds. That’s nice, but if someone needs to be told that, then telling them doesn’t do better now. You rarely, if ever, assure them tackled on the reasons for their self-interest. “You’re feeing a burger while discussing a murder that would kill the ones who cooked that burger, as well as the ones who worked in the slaughterhouse, elevated the cow, grew the grain … ” Even if the ultra-rich are incapable of feeling empathy, they could maybe be woken up to the fact that their comfortable life sits atop a pyramid of average everyday humen with chronic back pain.

But frankly, it’s possible that neither Eggsy( portrayed has having led a squandered life before becoming an elite Kingsman) nor James Bond even think of it that way. Most of us don’t. As a society, we are currently in a race to recognize who can automate away the number of jobs fastest, because if you think about it, does a server at a restaurant really do anything? Is there any reason to have a human delivering your packages or driving your taxi? You’ve all called a customer service line manned by a robotic voice giving you options to punch in; isn’t that as good as a human? Meanwhile, it seems like most of the world’s CEOs think their business would be perfect if it wasn’t for all of those whiny, bumbling people gumming up the works.

Society has developed a weird mental blind spot for common operating folk. Sure, most of us don’t be standing and fantasize about unleashing a virus to wipe out all of the worthless people( though some of you perfectly do, admit it ), but it’s easy to shuffle along a sidewalk packed with sweaty people tossing cigarette butts and jabbering on their phones and wish you could have all of the cool stuff in the city without “the crowds.”

We likewise tend to accept the ones who really matter are the Elon Musks and Kanye Wests , not the nameless nobodies who labor in the Tesla factory or project security at the concert. After all, great intellectuals are rare, but anybody can work on an assembly line! Aside from the fact that the last part is blatantly untrue, we then somehow stimulate the logical leap from “Anyone can do that job” to “That job is worthless.” Nobody respects garbage collectors, but holy shit, if they stop doing their job for a month, your neighborhood was transformed into a dystopia.

If we can’t appreciate that all lives have inherent value( which is apparently a tall order ), we are able to appreciate that they are doing and building the very stuff that stimulates our lives worth living. It would at least be a step in the right direction.

Tomorrow, for the finale of “Wait, What Was Their Scheme Again? ” we’ll be trying to understand why anyone crosses, or even working in cooperation with, John Wick .

Make sure to check out the rest of the series :

Why Loki Sucks As A Villain( And Keeps Getting Worse )

The Big Reason Why Darth Vader Is Actually A Crappy Villain

Why Beethoven Is The Most Screwed Up Family Movie Ever Made

The Villain From Dr. Strange Is Too Dumb To Live

John Wick’s Enemies Seem To Crave To Get Shot

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