Taking a break from committing suicide with food, Mike Pfeiffer will absolutely answer your questions on anything you put in the digital mailbag of firstname.lastname@example.org. Regardless of whether or not you think Mike is a mature adult, this column is probably best for Mature Adults. As a Mature Adult, you accept responsibility for any actions you take after reading this column. Just Dandy is intended for entertainment purposes only, and we’re sort of required to warn you not to try any of this at home.
Dear Just Dandy,
I watch and read a lot of super hero stories. I’ve noticed that the villains have an endless supply of henchmen. Where do they get them all from? Do they put an ad on Craigslist? Is there a tinder type app? Maybe a dating type website? Do they have requirements like being able to demonstrate Kung-Fu moves but never hit anyone? Aim optional? Any ideas?
Bob, this is a thoughtful question about the working classes of a fictional universe. I’m going to do my best to answer this without it turning into a ’90s Seinfeld routine, but the Just Dandy format is evolving at a rate that would make the president (Tommy Lee Jones) take off his glasses and say “My God” when presented with satellite photos from an eccentric young scientist (Jesse Eisenberg) who might just be our last hope, so we’ll see. With that said, What’s The Deal With Henchmen? I mean, is my life so dull that I’ve just never had a situation worth having someone else hench it? Or have I just been performing my own henching, incurring special tax breaks?
This is seriously a good question, though. Between the guarantee of getting your ass kicked and the threat of getting disintegrated as punishment for getting your ass kicked, henchlife is kind of a rough hustle. Surprising no one, I’ve spent a lot of time trying to figure out where all of these disposable dudes who can fill out a size ten jumpsuit and yell “Halt! Intruder!” come from and why they bother. My answer is basically that the world of super heroes is scary for anyone who isn’t a superhero, and it’s the only way to feel like you’re making a difference. Apologies to anyone hoping I’d get back to the keyboard and self-flagellate for a few paragraphs about how I’ve mistreated my own minions for years (I maintain they were Insolent Fools and fine fodder for the hungry Vornskyrrs in the pit beneath my apartment), but this is about to get pretty nerdy.
In every way, the problems with a superhero world are our problems but bigger. You know how it’s frustrating that these incredibly ultra-rich 1% dudes who can afford to have air flown in from Switzerland so they can efficiently blood dope for their squash match from the comfort of a ten million dollar New York apartment they use for one day a year can’t get over themselves enough to set aside an extra ten billion or so of the money they could never possibly spend and put it toward fixing our school system or something? Now imagine that the Koch brothers were supergeniuses who could shoot lasers out of their eyes and have stopped an alien invasion… But poverty and disease still exist. In a world where a dude named Mister Fantastic owns a building in Manhattan with a jet in it that can fit his fucked-up crag buddy and brother-in-law made of living, annoying napalm, there’s still enough problems to go around that Spider-Man has to stop purse snatchers. At least in our world the people failing to solve problems are normal human beings. Could you imagine having a cadre of superhumans who just knock the shit out of each other and invent dimension-swapping rays when neither of those things feeds your family, and you know they could fix it in a week if they put their minds to it? Occupy Wayne Manor!
And that’s the thinking man’s frustration. We have enough problems stemming from humans being afraid of differently colored humans for some godforsaken reason, could you imagine how insane racists would be if suddenly all black people could fly? This is basically the concept of The X-Men, dude. How about if on a daily basis you couldn’t be sure if your spouse definitively made it back okay from the trans-dimensional event from a few weeks ago where all the superpeople came back with new costumes and you woke up and suddenly history was different? It’s a weird world out there, and despite the fact that they save the world from destruction all the time, it’s hard to escape the feeling that these hunks are only using one half of their sculpted asses. From Reddit.com/r/RippedTights, “Reddit’s home for Human Rights Activists (HRA) in a world where humanity is neither served nor ruled by so-called Superhumans”:
TexasInstrumentsAintShit: Fellas, thought we said no more memes. Just thoughtful deconstruction of the superhero problem, you’re crowding down actual conversation.
Go_Them_Knights: LITERALLY THIS, when is superman going to understand that spitcurls and punches don’t buy apps for my son. come on man
BaldisBeautiful: Looks like someone got redpilled. Private message me if you think you’d rather be Mean than Meme when it comes to the Kryptonian.
KIllerCrocAMA: did u mean apps like on a phone or like a sampler platter at applebee’s
Go_Them_Knights: both, i guess
KillerCrocAMA: batman is the weak shit bubba, i kick his jabroni ass when i see him. tiny man
In our normal world there are normal undertrained idiots carrying assault rifles to Chipotle as if the real Osama (can’t trust Obungler not to blow that one) is going to show up with a bazooka and try to empty the register. Now imagine that the same base that makes people actively fear the idea of universal healthcare is applied to superheroics and boom, stormfront dot com and every other private militia becomes some expendable impressionable idiots for any would-be-Doctor-Doom who has enough spraypaint to stencil his face on some uniforms. Like minds are gonna seek each other and have a great time at the local superhaters meet-up, get scooped up by a man with a plan, and then Captain America has some very crackable skulls to test his shield tricks on. Plus, if these henchmen are the same fellas from our great history of drunken militia activity, then you can place the blame for their sub-par firearm accuracy on the shoulders of a Wild Turkey. The beverage or a literal wild turkey that has spooked them, I mean.
So that’s my answer, Bob. Weirdos disillusioned with the world around them who take solace in using a grappling hook gun to try and kill a teenager in a home-made costume in the hopes that maybe the world will get less scary. Of course, if you’re in the market for a henching solution that you don’t have to scrape out of a chatroom, then you could try getting gelded alien soldiers, clones, or some robots, but boutique shit like that is gonna cost the big bucks. Maybe some bucks with your face printed on them that will be the world’s new currency when the foolish Earth government sees the beauty of your plan and the power of your new tide destroyer.
NEXT WEEK: Just Dandy, I have a lot of friends who are mutants but they say I can’t call them “Homo Superior” or “My Homo.” Can you tell them it’s just a word and I should be allowed to say it?
That’s all for Just Dandy this week! Pfeiff will return to answer your questions about sex, pizza and rock n’ roll, or literally any topic you can think of as often as you can send them. Shoot him an email at email@example.com or tweet @ModDelusion using the hashtag #JustDandyDS.