Consensus Building – Chapter 7, Act 4, Strip 71

Huhmmmm…there seems to be something odd about DM’s line of reasoning, but I can’t quite put my finger on it. >_>

Him and the Thronesitter both agree that disunity is the greatest problem for the Forces of Evil in their otherwise unstoppable march toward total domination. And not only do they agree on that, there is ample historical precedent to back them up – baddies backstabbing baddies is an almost obligatory part of establishing baddies as being real baddies. Some works of fiction do it superficially, others really delve into it – but almost all do it. A consensus-and-kumbaya-driven Empire of Evil just doesn’t make quite enough sense.

So DM pinned the problem down correctly, I’d say. And I also have a hard time finding any fault with his analysis when it comes to finding the source of the problem: Having two people with supreme authority all but invites internal conflict, especially if they aren’t on the best of terms with each other. As Napoleon Bonaparte put it so well: “An army is better off being led by a bad general than by two good ones.” So it would really seem that DM’s efforts to halve the number of people in supreme authority could be an important and effective step to reduce the potential for disunity for Team Evil.

And, still…somehow my hypocrisy sense keeps tingling as DM backstabs his colleague in the name of unity and togetherness, I don’t know why. Perhaps I should have it re-calibrated, one of these days. >_>

K’ip is right, of course, when he says that backlifting a rival is a rather uncommon approach to a problem that is much more often dealt with by the time-honored method of backstabbing or similar. And going back to the Star Wars scene this rips off, one could argue that Darth Vader would have had other and more practical options open to him in that situation…but I still simply like the scene. It’s got great visuals, and the somewhat idiosyncratic approach adds an element of surprise. So how could I have passed up the chance?

More on Thursday.

4 Replies to “Consensus Building – Chapter 7, Act 4, Strip 71”

  1. In fairness to the DM, he already tried FRONTstabbing Thronesitter during the orcs and trolls brawl; and Thronesitter seemed to come out of that none the worse for wear. He probably figured, Thronesitter himself being evil, that backstabbing would have been even MORE obvious and thus LESS effective.
    But backLIFTING, no one sees that coming! You have the classic example of the villain standing with their back turned to the supposedly tossed-away hero; then hero climbs back up, picks the villain up from behind, and tosses them. Works every time.
    Even better, it provides a “No one could survive that” death (even though the hero JUST survived having the same thing done to them) that allows for said villain to come back in sequels.

    1. Yeah, that knife-fight back then didn’t really solve anything, and it’s highly likely that the reason for that was that attacking an enemy openly from the front is something that just won’t work out for a villain, unless a vast superiority in numbers is involved.

      And choosing backlifting over backstabbing was indeed just the right thing to do – it completely surprised Thronesitter, not only on the principle of the matter, but particularly because DM is physically much too short to perform this sort of maneuvre on him. It took a lot of inspired cable work and a shorter-than-normal stuntman for Thronesitter to make it appear even halfway plausible. How could Thronsitter have expected something like that? XD

  2. Points to DM for making the first move.

    Personally, I’m rooting for him. Thematically, he’s the more fitting villain for this sort of thing anyway.

    1. Yeah, DM was always scripted to be the main villain, Thronesitter was really only there for support and flavor. It goes back to the basics of RPGs – where a party might have to face Dragons, Lichs, Demon Lords etc. … but their worst enemy, at the core of the matter, will always be their DM. XD

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