What 9/11 Taught Me About Antagonists & the Importance of Compassion

I was riding with my mom to school that day when we heard the emergency broadcast signal turn on…and then the reports started coming in. Students spent the morning watching the story unfold on the news. It was a surreal moment, knowing that people’s lives were in danger and the only thing you could do was sit there and listen about it.

Today, I was driving in my car with the radio on. The station I was listening to started playing a tribute with clips from the attacks and some music in the background. I thought about the videos we saw, how some people made the choice to jump from the towers rather than burn alive. Made me wonder how I would have reacted in that situation.

Of course, I’ll never know—and I hope I’ll never have to. Still, the thought alone was enough to make me cry.

I didn’t personally know anyone who was physically there at the Towers back when they were attacked on September 11th.  Still, I can’t say that the events which took place that day haven’t altered my life here in America. We’ve exchanged personal freedoms for an increased sense of security—an exchange I question as to its effectiveness at deterring terrorists, if I’m honest. Our security measures were a reaction, and it makes me wonder if we continue to remain a few steps “behind” those we call our enemies. (Say what you will about al-Qaeda and other terrorists we face today, but they’re certainly not stupid.)

Of course, these thoughts and events have inevitably influenced my writing.

What 9/11 Has Taught Me About Antagonists

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A Tribute To Poison Ivy: Best Villainess Ever!

So The Dark Knight Rises will be out soon (totally psyched!), and it got me thinking about some old school Batman–namely the animated TV series.

I should explain that I was never a comic book person, you see.  It just wasn’t part of my “growing up” experience.  More recently I’ve bought some, but it’s still a pretty rare occurrence.  So essentially, everything I do know about Batman has come from the animated series that used to air (on WB, if I’m not mistaken).

Anyway, for some reason I’ve also been thinking about villains lately.  When it comes to the more recent Christopher Nolan movies the Joker inevitably comes to mind…for reasons I hope I need not explain!  (Another one of my favorite villains is the Operative from Serenity.  He was very intelligent and a skilled martial artist but also very unconventional–I mean the combination of his sword, the inflicted paralysis upon his opponents and the archaic fall-on-said-sword ritual in a futuristic sci-fi setting was just mind-blowingly awesome, imo.)  When I think back to the TV show, however, the villain that most stood out to me was actually…

Poison Ivy

Why her, you may ask?  Um, well let’s see… She’s:

  1. beautiful
  2. graceful
  3. seductive
  4. hard to resist (we won’t mention those *ehem* noxious toxins…)
  5. has this weird but completely awesome obsession with plants & the mad ability to control them (she’d fit in nicely with the world of Element 7, actually)

…BUT…once you get past all those things, she is still pretty evil–the only reason Batman was able to resist, imo.  (I always thought they should get together, but t’was not meant to be.)

Le sigh.

I love her so much that she has been somewhat of an inspiration for one of my characters–you know, that traitorous double agent I’ve written once or twice about.  (She’s reported dead but still an important part of the story.)

Anyway, you should totally check out this 2min. YouTube video featuring Poison Ivy and relive the wicked glory that was she.

Who are some of your favorite villains/villainesses?

How come?