The latest book sent to me by The Phoenix Presents is the second installment in one of my favourite franchises, Evil Emperor Penguin. I reviewed the first edition of EEP a while back, when the world was a very different place. Now, of course, things have changed, and it seems that we’re living in the age of the Penguin. A ridiculous, over-the-top, caricaturish, hair-trigger villain fond of expensive and impractical evil schemes, even Donald Trump would admit that EEP would make a serious political rival.
In fact, this latest collection of EEP’s adventures suggests that this black-and-white bird would make a far better leader of the free world than certain orange clowns. Based on the evidence found in what I shall henceforth (or maybe just this once) refer to as The Rainbow Dossier, I shall put forward my argument as to why Evil Emperor Penguin should be the world’s Villain-in-Chief.
EEP surrounds himself with compassionate and competent advisers
EEP’s staff includes Mister 8, a hyperintelligent octopus, and Eugene, a tiny yeti with a heart of gold. Together, they keep the lair running efficiently despite EEP’s outbursts, and mitigate the fallout of any evil plans. No alternative facts or links with racist groups can be found in EEP’s cabinet – instead, his administration is far more concerned with spaghetti hoops and making the perfect cup of tea.
EEP’s plans are more fiscally and morally responsible
While he’s never considered building an incredibly expensive invisible wall, EEP is no stranger to a supervillainous scheme. In The Rainbow Dossier, we see evidence of plots to trap all of the world’s leaders inside paintings, candles that give off ‘essence of evil’, and plans for a Yugenator – I’m sorry, a Hugenator designed to blow a person (or penguin) up to giant proportions. (Let’s keep quiet about that last one).
These devices may seem unlikely, but EEP proves time and again that he has the resources and yetipower to deliver on his promises. What’s more, these particular evil schemes always have a (to be fair, unexpected) positive impact on the world, and they never target vulnerable and marginalised groups in a way highly reminiscent of genocidal dictators. Score two for EEP!
EEP is, when he’s forced to be, a pretty good boss
One of the major story arcs in EEP Volume 2 involves Eugene going missing. It takes quite a while for EEP to care, and he’s grumpy throughout the search – but he carries out said search personally, and doesn’t stop until he finds his favourite henchman. EEP shows a hands-on approach and a personal level of interest in the wellbeing of his staff that you don’t see in many real-world villains.
I think the evidence is clear – Evil Emperor Penguin may be an angry, ridiculous incompetent, but he’s the kind of angry ridiculous incompetent that the world actually needs. If he ever decides to gain power through (slightly) more traditional means, he’ll get my vote.