Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Good Is Made of Win, Evil Is Made of Fail

Canonically, and I don't view the reboot as canon since all the characters are so far out of character, James T Kirk is a polymath with two degrees. Everywhere he goes, he turns certain defeat into victory. Unstoppable war machine? No problem. Energy sucking space monster set to reproduce? No problem. Centuries old incorporeal vampire? No problem. Gods? Pshaw. Captain Kirk, mortal, is a Godkiller.

Meanwhile, the Goddess Illyria in Angel: the Series is a million year old eldritch abomination. And everywhere she goes she loses. Her army? Dust. Her chosen guide? Hates her guts. Her teammates? Scared of her and disrespectful. Her power? Waning. Herself? Utterly lost and without hope.

All other things being equal, Good protagonists (not merely "good" or competent since competence is one of the variables equalized) are made of win and Evil protagonists (no matter how much their Evil authors and Evil audience loves them) are made of fail.

The God-Emperor of Mankind (Good) manages to keep the Empire of Mankind together and surviving for 10,000 years despite being clinically medically dead and personally fighting against not one but FOUR Evil deities and traitors both within and without. He doesn't quite manage to win against overwhelming odds but he does PERSONALLY postpone defeat for ten thousand years.

Some people thought the Warhammer universe wasn't shitty enough, but really, how can you make it shittier? Well you start with "the God-Emperor dies". No longer just clinically dead but dead dead. Yeah, that's the first step to make Warhammer shittier, which goes to show just how important and critical he is.

Taylor Hebert (Neutral) manages to kill a god who was set on eating thousands of Earths. Her victory came at the cost of billions of deaths, rather than the trillions that were set to die, her world becoming depopulated, and her own sanity lost. The cure for her insanity is bang, a shot through her head. Not exactly what I would consider an overwhelming victory but still impressive.

The Red One aka Nemesis in The Last Angel (Evil), she manages to ... destroy a fleet when she has superior overwhelming weapons. She also manages to make a few allies despite herself. And her weapons really are overwhelming, hundreds of years beyond her opponents'. She's also an AI so has thousands of times their reaction time. And she's lying in ambush against unaware and unprepared opponents. She's only vulnerable at all because she's injured due to her own rage and stupidity.

In Pantheocide by Stuart Slade, the humans conquer Hell and Heaven using nukes when their opponents don't even have guns. Or cars or planes or spy satellites or accurate maps or intel or competent leadership. And still Heaven and Hell manage to inflict billions of casualties on humanity. Not what one would call an impressive victory. Rather, it was inevitable and is pathetic.

Good people are made of win and Evil people are made of FAIL. And that's precisely why psychopaths, being Evil, are so obsessed with winning at any cost. Because they suck at it. And it's precisely why narcissists are so obsessed with status, because they suck at acquiring it. And it's precisely why right-wing authoritarians are so obsessed with resources and worship "Building" and "Builders", because they suck at using, managing and creating resources.

Good people don't go for mere victory, that's too trivial and pathetic. Good people challenge themselves by going for win-win-win conditions. Good people don't care about status, because that's an inevitable side-effect of everything they do and just as automatic as breathing. And Good people don't care about building machines or LEGO blocks, because they care about doing The Right Thing. Why would you care to build a computer when you can build a mind? Why build a computer program when you can build a society? Only morons care.

Similarly for friends and followers and colleagues and coworkers. Who needs them? A Good person goes out alone against a harsh evil world because they are enough to overcome any difficulty. And if they choose to partner with someone it's not because they are obsessed with people as Neutrals are, but because it's convenient.

Now one may ask, "if Evil is made of fail then how come Evil runs the world?" A fact which is blatantly obvious to anyone who cares to actually look at the world. Well, it's simply that Evil has overwhelming and entrenched advantages.

Humanity began as an infanticidal, genocidal, murderous, psychopathic, incestuous species. The physical universe itself is largely Evil and almost entirely un-Good. And every moron can comprehend Evil while few people comprehend Good.

Those are all overwhelming advantages. And still, Goodness is winning and Evil is failing.

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