Well that was real mature...

Well that was real mature...

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

The Trope of the Villain Monologue: My Biggest Worry



            So here, we arrive the to build up to the big climax and the reveal of the "Big Bad." The last page reveal would leave many readers skeptical. I had to nail this. Here is the problem: If I over explain, I run the risk of insulting the readers' intelligence. If I under explain they might feel cheated. I had solid reasoning. How much to I layout? Luckily, Pulp style is big and over the top more often than not. It doesn't matter if its noir, sci-fi, fantasy or adventure. I have some leeway. Not much, but some. Hopefully just enough or an arch monologue that would explain everything without coming across as too spoon fed.

            First, the "femme fatale" is a traditional trope. I deliberately had Matt avoid the sultry raven haired depiction and requested he go with a blonde girl next door looks for Betty. That was my first act of misdirection.

            Now, let's say you want to set up an online business. The first thing you would do is test security of your website. You would hire someone to try to hack the site and see where you are weak. Logically, I figured if you are planning an alien invasion, and you had a security breach, say a government official (Eugene) then you would want to test and see how vulnerable your plans are. You would bring someone in and put them on the path to get them started. At each level you might help them along, especially if you also needed a fall guy to explain the disappearance of the already mentioned "breach." (Betty puts Eugene's journal in Dick's hands, and whenever he was stumped, they helped him along appearing the sewers, allowing him to escape when they captured him, holding him right at the Empire State Building). Their intent was if the figured out too much on his own they would change plans. If they had to help him along (which they did), he would be blamed for Eugene's death. A plan within a plan. Sure Dick exceeded expectations by killing the sewer aliens and getting the weapon but that's where Betty got over confident. She still sees his threat assessment as minor, even admitting she was only giving in to her "security chief" to prove what a great leader she is. In her mind, it was all silly but methodically planned. Hopefully I spelled out enough for readers to buy it but not too much as to insult them. Every time I made an artistic decision I would take a step back and ask myself, "How would the aliens react be if Dick did X instead of Y." It had to be air tight. To hit that note story wise I had Betty say she figured he would see the aliens, run away, tell authorities, and not be believed.

            The big shocker was the obligatory act of needless violence. The murder of Eugene. I had her do it just to up the evil ante and because it would play as arch. A needed tone for making the monologue go down. Over the top actions always help make over the top dialogue go down better. Remember my motto for pulp: Go big or go home and have fun. None of this would work if some of it wasn't tongue in cheek. Matt even gets in to the spirit by adding such non-scripted touches as having Betty's alien tongue licking the doomed Eugene as she caresses him just prior to the neck snap as well as Eugene's tearful reaction.

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