Eight Eyes See More Than Four – Chapter 8, Act 2, Strip 100

Given the evil Queen’s threatening aura, you might have thought she was going to kill her lackluster subordinates – an obvious assumption especially under the consideration that villains regularly kill subordinates simply to top off their villainous credentials and increase the apparent threat to the protagonists.

But the evil Queen is obviously smarter than that. What would it have helped to kill the Twins? She would then have had to look for other subordinates to replace them, and those might have turned out similarly useless. And there was an alternative: after all, the main problem was the Twins’ personalities, and in anime there’s a sure-fire way to completely alter – practically even reverse – somebody’s personality: the addition of glasses, resp. their removal if they are present.

And glasses come with a set of batch values the evil Queen treasures in subordinates: seriousness, soberness, industriousness and being focused. Glasses also come with a substantial increase in mental capacity – and I would tend to agree with the Queen that the twins could do with that. There’s a trade-off involved, of course – among the negative features a character acquires with their glasses are social awkwardness, humorlessness, arrogance and lack of empathy. But, yeah, nothing of that negatively affects subordinate performance in the Queen’s eyes, so she didn’t hesitate to strike that sort of deal (as depicted).

You might think that this whole sort of thing is just a stereotype in fiction, but I can assure you that the effect exists in reality and wreaks havoc with innocent lives every day. I’ve been wearing glasses since I was six years old and am indeed serious, sober, industrious, focused, socially awkward, humorless, arrogant and unempathetic. I’m pretty sure I’d be a much more decent and functional human being if that hadn’t happened to me. For that reason, I’ll also withhold judgement on whether the Queen let the Twins get off easy with this, or whether it wouldn’t have been more merciful to just kill them. Just look at them – even their hair is less fun. And, come to think of it, I haven’t really had any fun since I was six years old, as well. >_>

More on Thursday.

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