Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Alpha Male

For an upcoming superhero RPG (presumably Mutants & Masterminds), I'm thinking about a new concept for a supervillain. I'm worried, however, that the concept might be a little too controversial. Here he is:

(disclaimer: rough draft mode, so ideas are fluid and flexible and the writing is poor, almost stream-of-consciousness quality)

Throughout his life, Todd Preston has never had much rapport with the opposite sex. He was always what he considered "the nice guy" and could never get passed what he called "the friend zone."

Todd's frustrations reached a head when the love of his life, Penny Miller, got engaged to Pete Armstead, Todd's rival. Todd was finally overcome with frustration. "Why does the nice guy never finish first?" he yelled up to the sky. "I do everything for women and they do nothing but hurt me, again and again and again. I'm sick of it!"

Todd, a talented chemist working for the Ultra-Chem Pharmaceutical company, began illegally experimenting with a new steroid the company was working on. The steroid, called ultroid, was supposed to be three times as effective as conventional steroids but with none of the side effects. Todd, believing a muscular body and a new bad boy attitude would win him the attention he thought he deserved, started stealing the drug, synthesizing more of it for his own use, and taking it with his exercise regimen.

However, although the drug did not affect anger like normal steroids, the drug had an unexpected, far more dangerous side effect: it warped and contorted the mind, giving the user delusions of grandeur and extreme psychosis. As Todd took it more and more, becoming faster and stronger than most humans are even capable of, he began to see himself as a symbol of masculinity, a beacon of hope in a world that was increasingly turning its back on the men, not women, who made this world great. He believed himself the harbringer of a return to a more "natural way of life." Donning a mask to protect his identity, Todd Preston became The Alpha Male. 

Recruiting from "men's rights movements" web pages, Alpha Male began giving the drug to others, to build an army of powerful, dangerous men for h
is grand scheme...

(again: rough draft mode)

So, Dear Reader, what do you think? The influences of Alpha Male are obvious. Is it in poor taste to have such a villain? Or could I make it work? What my concern is regarding Alpha Male is that he may make gamers, particularly women, uncomfortable. I picture him being in a superhero game of a Post-modern Silver Age tone: cheesy but not too cheesy, over the top but with some kernels of truth at the center. Somebody the Amazing Spiderman may fight. I don't want to go to any dark places with Alpha Male in my game; at his core, I want him to be the stereotypical megalomaniac supervillain, with a worldview shaped by modern gender roles rather than "because he's the bad guy."

If you have any suggestions on developing his character or what his "grand scheme" could be, let me know!

1 comment:

  1. I think as long as you put in HUGE disclaimers that you don't feel this way and you're doing this character specifically as a point of satire for a particularly virulent issue in the geek/gaming/nerd culture..that and play him COMPLETELY over the top hamming it up...i don't think it would be TOO bad.


My Own Loser Path

"If you're a Sym main, please exit the stream," was the description yesterday of one of the Overwatch Twitch streams I follow....