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Gryphonadmin
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Aug-10-14, 01:08 AM (EST)
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"In Which Akio Is Called Out"
 
   I made a joke about the absurdly cutoff Earth Queen plot in Book 3 of The Legend of Korra, and Jeanne said:

>>(quietly shelves his plan for Ozai and Beria to kill Akio and take
>>over the Black Rose)
>
>Oh please not. Akio is a joke as a villain.

... I beg your pardon?

--G.
A, I would think that would mean you'd want him replaced, and B, What?
-><-
Benjamin D. Hutchins, Co-Founder, Editor-in-Chief, & Forum Mod
Eyrie Productions, Unlimited http://www.eyrie-productions.com/
zgryphon at that email service Google has
Ceterum censeo Carthaginem esse delendam.


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  Subject     Author     Message Date     ID  
In Which Akio Is Called Out [View All] Gryphonadmin Aug-10-14 TOP
  RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out JeanneHedge Aug-10-14 1
     RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out BZArchermoderator Aug-10-14 2
     RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out Nova Floresca Aug-10-14 4
     RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out laudre Aug-10-14 5
     RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out trboturtle2 Aug-10-14 6
     RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out JeanneHedge Aug-10-14 7
         RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out Matrix Dragon Aug-10-14 8
             RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out Droken Aug-11-14 9
     RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out Offsides Aug-11-14 10
         RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out Gryphonadmin Aug-11-14 11
  RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out BeardedFerret Aug-10-14 3
  RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out Mercutio Aug-13-14 12
     RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out Vorticity Aug-13-14 13
     RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out Matrix Dragon Aug-14-14 17
         RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out Mercutio Aug-14-14 18
             RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out Matrix Dragon Aug-14-14 20
                 RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out Mercutio Aug-15-14 21
                     RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out Matrix Dragon Aug-15-14 22
  RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out Terminus Est Aug-13-14 14
     RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out Mercutio Aug-13-14 15
         RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out Terminus Est Aug-13-14 16
             RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out Peter Eng Aug-14-14 19
  RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out BeardedFerret Jun-29-15 23
     RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out JeanneHedge Jun-29-15 24
         RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out Peter Eng Jun-29-15 25
             RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out Verbena Jun-29-15 26
                 RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out mdg1 Jun-30-15 27
             RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out Star Ranger4 Jul-04-15 28
  RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out Berrik Jul-07-15 29
     RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out Gryphonadmin Jul-08-15 30
         RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out Matrix Dragon Jul-08-15 31

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JeanneHedge
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Aug-10-14, 03:04 AM (EST)
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1. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #0
 
   >I made a joke about the absurdly cutoff Earth Queen plot in Book 3 of
>The Legend of Korra, and Jeanne said:
>
>>>(quietly shelves his plan for Ozai and Beria to kill Akio and take
>>>over the Black Rose)
>>
>>Oh please not. Akio is a joke as a villain.
>
>... I beg your pardon?

I consider Akio Ohtori, as presented in these stories to date, to be a joke as a villain. I can't think of anything that he's done or been responsible for that the "good guys" haven't been able to deal with, usually making him look foolish in the process. He goes to weddings to cause trouble, and to his frustration he gets ignored. He spies on the lives of the Trinity, and that one of them has made it so he can't spy any longer is mentioned almost as an afterthought. If he had a moustache, he'd likely be twirling it as he boasted of his plots and plans to his minions, even though they (the plans and the minions) haven't gotten him anywhere much. He's not done much of anything that I can recall that has had a lasting impact on anything. He's an irritant, yes, but he's not a Big Bad. At least not in my opinion.

(I haven't seen enough of the source material to know if he actually accomplishes anything there either (he apparently didn't with Anthy and Utena), or if he's "just" a sex predator.)


Jeanne


Jeanne Hedge
http://www.jhedge.com
1st Courier of the Heavenly Prophets for Tianxia
"Never give up, never surrender!"



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BZArchermoderator
Member since Nov-9-05
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Aug-10-14, 09:22 AM (EST)
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2. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #1
 
   I sort of see where you're going, but you're also missing a few pieces of context, I think.

1) He's also taken over a fairly major chunk of Hell itself, and decided to split some of it off to create his own private realm

2) Where, in said realm, he's been assembling and dilligently training up what appears to be a pretty significant army.

3) He's exploited Freyja's mental fault lines to the point where, I suspect, she'd probably be willing to side with him over Asgard when that eventually comes to blows.

4) Rather brutally damaged Raven, and gave a pretty good accounting of himself against Gryphon in the process.

5) Has (as of the Diqiu suite) inserted moles into DSM, where he's likely to be sowing some seeds of unrest and / or siphoning off more potential candidates for item 2.

6) Made it pretty clear in some of the OOTR asides that most of your points about being caught out (or deliberately showing his hand, ie: the wedding) were intentional moves to make the Trinity and their various allies think of him as a paper tiger.

In addition to being a predator, it's worth pointing out that Akio has been, in canon and his UF appearances, an incredibly nasty and effective manipulator, and it looks to me like he's spent a lot of time and effort to misdirect his enemies, while preparing what I suspect is going to be a VERY nasty sucker punch.

About the only hole card the good guys have right now (as far as we, the audience knows) is that Saionji, Mia, and Anakin are gathering a fair bit of intel from the inside, and that Akio doesn't know they're double-agents.

But it also wouldn't shock me if Akio knows a lot more than they think (see point 6) and has something nasty in mind for them as well.

I see Akio as the complete opposite of a moustache twirler - he's a chessmaster, and he's not afraid to make himself look foolish for the early portion of the game if it helps him set up his endgame.

---------------------------
Matt "BZArcher" Wagner
@BZArcher / bzarcher at gmail
"Here's an itemized list of 30
years of disagreements!"


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Nova Floresca
Member since Sep-13-13
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Aug-10-14, 11:14 AM (EST)
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4. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #1
 
   The fact that everything he has done has failed I think is less a testament to his incompetence and more to the power of Corwin's curse. The wording in S2M6 is:

>By my Will and by my Power,
Birthright from my divine Mother,
This is my command:
May you never know completion
May you never know achievement
May you never know success:
But always frustration
Always shortfall
Always failure.<

That's pretty well got the deck stacked against the man in terms of him actually being able to succeed, but the fact he's hanging on as well as he does is rather terrifying.

"This is probably a stupid question, but . . ."


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laudre
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Aug-10-14, 11:52 AM (EST)
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5. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #1
 
   >(I haven't seen enough of the source material to know if he actually
>accomplishes anything there either (he apparently didn't with Anthy
>and Utena), or if he's "just" a sex predator.)

He's considerably more than a sex predator. And he most certainly did have a number of victories against Utena and Anthy prior to the denouement. Hell, his control over Anthy is why he maintained control over the academy; Utena's victory over him at the end, even when it appears that she's lost, comes in the form of Anthy being able to simply walk away.


"Mathematics brought rigor to economics. Unfortunately, it also brought mortis."
- Kenneth Boulding


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trboturtle2
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Aug-10-14, 12:02 PM (EST)
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6. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #1
 
   It wasn't his fault his guide was Dick Dasterly......

Craig
(Wacky Racers fame.....)

-----------------------------
Writer for BattleCorps.com and
Battletech/Co-author of Outcast Ops:
African Firestorm, Outcast Ops: Red
Ice, and recently released,
Outcast Ops: Watchlist. All around
semi-nice guy! Really!!


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JeanneHedge
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Aug-10-14, 04:28 PM (EST)
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7. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #1
 
   Sorry guys, I just don't think much of him as a villain. He raises armies and hasn't done anything (and I have gotten the impression that someone else there is the real boss and Akio does nothing without permission from that one anyway). He's got spies - so do the good guys. And look at who he sent to lay the ground at DSM - not impressive to me. He got Freyja to take him to the wedding - everyone knew and knows she has mental issues and so are watching her, so did that gain him anything? One of his plots got shut down by people having sex, for gawds sake! He doesn't get stuff done because Corwin's cursed him - another reason why he's not all that, when his enemy can control him that way.

To me, a villain has to do damage, the kind that isn't brushed off with a smirk and a smart remark, but must be dealt with after it happens, long-term if necessary (if it isn't permanent). Akio's had his chances. A real villain needs to be responsible for something major. Maybe permanently turn or kill some people who aren't Red Shirts but rather those the reader already knows and maybe care about (Breaking News: AON goes to the Dark Side!)

I'd love to be surprised. Right now, I'm just not seeing him as being capable of it. So put him on the shelf and reveal the real villain that's been working behind the scenes. Just my opinion.

Jeanne


Jeanne Hedge
http://www.jhedge.com
1st Courier of the Heavenly Prophets for Tianxia
"Never give up, never surrender!"



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Matrix Dragon
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8. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #7
 
   >Sorry guys, I just don't think much of him as a villain. He raises
>armies and hasn't done anything

Well, yes, because the story hasn't gotten to the point they need to be used.

>He's got spies - so do the good guys.

I gotta admit, I'm not seeing how both sides having spies makes him a joke.

>And look at who he sent to lay the ground at DSM - not
>impressive to me. He got Freyja to take him to the wedding - everyone
>knew and knows she has mental issues and so are watching her, so did
>that gain him anything?

He left a taint on the first wedding attempt, one that would have damaged the day for everyone. The fact that Earthforce being dicks interrupted it as well doesn't change that. And yeah, his primary goal wasn't something serious as part of his agenda, as far as we've seen. It was simple cruel spite, an attempt to try and make his former victims suffer for daring to be happy. And in the process, he took an emotionally broken woman, a victim of a horrible rape who never got the help she needed, and broke her further, ruining the relationship between her, her brother, and many of her friends. And he did it because it entertained him.

> One of his plots got shut down by people having sex, for gawds sake!

... Seriously? That's what you took as the solution at the end of the Symphony?

>To me, a villain has to do damage, the kind that isn't brushed off
>with a smirk and a smart remark, but must be dealt with after it
>happens, long-term if necessary (if it isn't permanent). Akio's had
>his chances.

And done pretty damn well with them. Besides coming close to victory in Cephiro and only being stopped at the last second through heroics and a lot of luck, he left the sort of scars that took years for Anthy and Utena to recover from. And he survived. He survived, built up his forces again, and was confident enough to reveal himself simply for the purpose of making his enemies suffer. The reason that didn't work wasn't because he's a joke or not a threat, it didn't work because he couldn't understand how Anthy had grown.

And then he followed it up by kidnapping, manipulating, and nearly murdering his daughter to use her as a weapon. In the process he took on a man with four centuries of combat experience, and (again), only lost because of something he didn't anticipate.

Just because his plans have been foiled before, doesn't make them any less dangerous. He hasn't come close to the point of 'Team Rocket's blasting off again'

Matrix Dragon, J. Random Nutter


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Droken
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Aug-11-14, 00:59 AM (EST)
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9. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #8
 
   >>Sorry guys, I just don't think much of him as a villain. He raises
>>armies and hasn't done anything
>
>Well, yes, because the story hasn't gotten to the point they need to
>be used.
>
>>He's got spies - so do the good guys.
>
>I gotta admit, I'm not seeing how both sides having spies makes him a
>joke.

Let's also not forget, Saionji isn't exactly a spy; he's more like an ace in the hole. Except that most of the group doesn't even know where he is, much less have a way to contact him. And Mia... we don't know -what- the deal with Mia is. There's no explicit mention so far in any of the stories that she's not a fully willing participant in the Order of the Black Rose. The last I can recall her being mentioned before her appearance in Ash Knight (chronologically) was during the Duelist conference after Juniper was brought in.

As for Akio himself, as Gryph himself mentioned in a previous back-and-forth on this subject: the guy -built himself his own plane of existence-. And he did it with an Aes' blood curse on him. And to top it all off, he did that after obtaining a Dukedom in Muspelheim. And all in what, three years?

That takes some serious chops.

-Droken

"If at first you don't succeed, bull-
riding is not for you."


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Offsides
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10. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #1
 
   >I consider Akio Ohtori, as presented in these stories to date, to be a
>joke as a villain. I can't think of anything that he's done or been
>responsible for that the "good guys" haven't been able to deal with,
>usually making him look foolish in the process. He goes to weddings to
>cause trouble, and to his frustration he gets ignored. He spies on the
>lives of the Trinity, and that one of them has made it so he can't spy
>any longer is mentioned almost as an afterthought. If he had a
>moustache, he'd likely be twirling it as he boasted of his plots and
>plans to his minions, even though they (the plans and the minions)
>haven't gotten him anywhere much. He's not done much of anything that
>I can recall that has had a lasting impact on anything. He's an
>irritant, yes, but he's not a Big Bad. At least not in my opinion.

I'll grant you one half-point: To those of us completely on the outside who can see all the different pieces that have been shown to us, and thus have some knowledge of the moves and counter-moves that are going on, he doesn't seem that big of a threat. But I'll also counter with this: Akio's greatest weapon, both now and in the past, has been royally fscking with peoples' heads. Not just to manipulate them, but to annoy them, to scare the bejeesus out of them, and even to break them. Yes, he's building an army, but his #1 focus is still PsyOps, trying to keep his enemies off-balance at best and really screw them up at worst.

Unfortunately for him, most of his chief underlings either aren't very good at what he really wants done, are just plain incompetent, or are more interested than their own agendas to get the job done right. Combine that with the fact that he is a bit overconfident in his own schemes and abilities, and he has Corwin's blood curse on him (which I think he still doesn't fully understand the power behind - it may have been initially given before he was invested as the Pillar of Cephiro, and Akio may have been reborn as a Demon of Muspelheim, but Akio was born of Cephiro, and Corwin is it's Pillar, and that's bound to have some sort of cosmic resonance when all is said any done...).

So yes, from certain angles Akio is a bit of a joke, but only when looked at through a very narrow lens. Plus, I'm sure there are things we haven't seen anywhere that will change the big picture even more when they're revealed.

Offsides

[...] in order to be a realist you must believe in miracles.
-- David Ben Gurion
EPU RCW #π
#include <stdsig.h>


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Gryphonadmin
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11. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #10
 
   >Akio's greatest weapon, both now and in the past,

I was going to throw down the Spanish Inquisition riff here, but I think Azula and her minions wore it better, so upon reflection, I'm not going to.

--G.
... and nice red uniforms oh damn.
-><-
Benjamin D. Hutchins, Co-Founder, Editor-in-Chief, & Forum Mod
Eyrie Productions, Unlimited http://www.eyrie-productions.com/
zgryphon at that email service Google has
Ceterum censeo Carthaginem esse delendam.


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BeardedFerret
Member since Apr-21-08
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Aug-10-14, 09:34 AM (EST)
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3. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #0
 
   That's kind of his charm. He's an absolute failure of a man who has utterly bought into his own bullshit, and has managed to create an entire realm based around reliving his high school glory days. In that sense, he's essentially an evil version of that uncle everyone had who won't stop talking about how he neatly made the national basketball squad.


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Mercutio
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12. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #0
 
   Late to the party, but I gots to get in on this:

Akio is only a joke of a villain so far because he hasn't actually begun his main villain arc yet.

No, really. He hasn't. Everything up to now? Has been warm-up. It doesn't seem like it is, because in real time he's been around for nearly a decade and a half, but he hasn't actually pulled the trigger on his big thing yet.

It is true that so far everything he has tried has gotten him his ass handed to him. That is the case with every major villain in UF going right back to Largo. You guys remember Largo, right? The guy who kept getting everything overt he tried exploded by the WDF, until suddenly he snuck up on them sideways, shanked them, and walked away whistling to basically de facto rule the galaxy from the shadows for like a hundred years?

Big Fire/the Magnificent Ten are the same way. Every single time they show up, they end up getting their clocks cleaned. Oh, sure, you have things like Shockwave Alberto saying "no, really, we're okay with our kaiju assault on New Avalon getting stuffed, honest, it was just a field test" and maybe he's bullshitting and maybe he ain't, but they're also sort of joke villains... until, presumably, the time comes when they score a big win. They've been being built up for a long time now and have something up their sleeves.

The Earth Alliance are jokes as well, but they're very clearly meant to be deliberate jokes, so they get a pass; whoever was running Clark et al. clearly was setting them up to fail and so turned them into cartoonish supervillains.

Anyway.

My point is kind of that "the bad guys constantly lose and lose hard, and even when they win it is rarely significant" is kind of a theme of UF. It is somewhat annoying (Jeanne mentioned the wedding sequence, and she was right to; Akio is supposed to be an enormously smooth operator and instead everyone there saw right through him) that Akio has been tripping over his own feet for awhile, but I really think that his big wins are on the horizon; he'll only become a joke if he keeps consistently being beaten.

And I for one look forward to those wins on Akio's part! The best narrative decision the production team ever made was Sonset. Yes, a lot of the writing that came out of the Exile was crap. But the Exile was necessary. The WDF couldn't just constantly go from victory to victory in their giant floating space fortress, making the galaxy safe for freedom. They had to be ripped apart and kicked into the gutter, because that was what allowed them to rise back up like a phoenix and give their ultimate victory meaning. The losses they suffered had to be real ones to give the rebuilding depth. Sure, these days Gryphon lives in his wonderful dyson sphere in his awesome IPO office with his family and big house in the suburbs and everything is awesome.

But he'll never be able to sit on the bridge of the Wayward Son and order it to make the jump to lightspeed again. If he wants to see a lot of the guys he spent a couple hundred years serving alongside, he'll have to go to Valhalla, which is NOT the same. There's a whole planet out there that's poisoned that he can't make better, and I bet he blames himself for that. His best and oldest friend changed in weird and freaky ways because of Sonset and the Exile, and is no longer the same person he had a cabin down the hall from for so many years.

And that's just Gryphon. There are others.

Those losses are what made the victory matter.

At some point, Akio is going to stop being a joke. He's going to come at the Trinity from an angle they don't expect and do something truly, nastily, monstrously awful to them that they won't just be able to brush off or walk away from or easily heal from. He's going to inflict loss on them.

And their lives are gonna suck for awhile.

And then they're going to defeat him so utterly he might as well have never existed, and it is precisely because of the scars they bear that that victory will be amazing.

Or at least, so I hope. If he just ends up their punching bag from not until whenever, he will indeed be a joke villain.

-Merc
Keep Rat


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Vorticity
Member since Feb-6-12
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Aug-13-14, 07:40 PM (EST)
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13. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #12
 
   I find myself having the opposite opinion as the topic of this thread: that Akio is one of the very few villains in UF that isn't a joke.

Most of the villains in UF are just plain crazy, self-obsessed, or have some sort of joke philosophy like Church of Man or Objectivism. No one rational opposes the heroes -- or if they do, they eventually end up joining Team Hero like Carmela Sunderland or Liza Broadbank or even freaking GENOM.

"Darth" Venger talks the talk, but still ends up doing the stupid, short-sighted things for vengeance or rage. Clarissa Broadbank's malice is matched only by her pettiness, and that pettiness leads to some stupid decisions indeed. Akio has only been an annoyance so far because he always plays the long game, and because a lot of his accomplishments have been off-screen. Akio tempers the pettiness and rage and pride with the desire for power and his plan to actually achieve that power.

Much of what Akio has done after S2 has been along the same lines as what Utena has done: establish oneself in a new plane of existence, get a new powerful title, pal around with deities, get an academy named after oneself, sleep with a guy who also had sex with Nanami Kiyruu*, marshal a group of powerful fighters, build a coalition with a Force-using order whose goals tangentially match your own (and then refocus them to match your own beliefs). This parallelism is largely the point -- Akio is the Dark Prince to Utena's Light Prince. And saying that he isn't a credible villain is almost like saying Utena isn't a credible hero.

When Yoda made that comment about Utena having the power to crush the galaxy beneath her feet -- that's basically what Akio would have done in her absence. And he continues to plan to do. Right now he only comes out for no-risk, win-win maneuvers, because you always protect your king in chess. Utena's ability to sacrifice herself is where she shines, and will probably make the difference in the end.

Honestly, I wish UF had more villains like Akio, because most of them are idiots who seem like they never really had a chance of success. When his plan finally goes into motion, it will be as hard as hell to stop.** And I'm looking forward to seeing it.

-- ∇×V
* A thought I'm sure you could live without >:)
** Literally


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Matrix Dragon
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Aug-14-14, 02:36 AM (EST)
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17. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #12
 
   >The Earth Alliance are jokes as well, but they're very clearly
>meant to be deliberate jokes, so they get a pass; whoever was
>running Clark et al. clearly was setting them up to fail and so turned
>them into cartoonish supervillains.

Gotta chime in with a 'bwuh?' here. Let's keep in mind that, over a span of about twenty years, Clark and his allies managed to take complete control of the Earth Alliance, legitimately (This guy got elected to be EA president), then proceeded to do the same to nearly the entire Federation. They poisoned the relationship between Starfleet and the WDF, had enough minions and allies in the Federation Senate that they got away with dissolving their member nations, and by 2407, were close to expanding their telepath slavery program to the rest of the Federation. And it got worse from there. And for almost all that time, the heroes only managed relatively minor victories.

They lasted twenty years, and yes, the WDF and the IPO took them down in the end. But by then, they had infested the Federation to the point that one of the largest, most powerful, and formerly most respectable nations in explored space, was so rotted and corrupt that there was no salvaging it.

I'm not seeing them as a joke.

Matrix Dragon, J. Random Nutter


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Mercutio
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18. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #17
 
   Well, here's the thing. All the stuff you just described? They were triumphs of the people running Clark and Greeley and their fellow travelers.

Those guys? Were not jokes. They fomented a war that was only marginally less bad than the War of Corporate Occupation and left the whole of Known Space politically destabilized and bereft of a strong body of interstellar diplomacy, peacekeeping, and lawmaking. It didn't quite go as well as they'd have liked (they didn't manage to break the back of Earth as the cultural hub of the human diaspora) but it went really well. You're right about that. We don't even know who they are, really; the Mysterons are probably yet another front.

But the Earth Alliance itself? They're kind of a joke, and comically inept. All the things they did were things that were going to culminate in them getting their asses kicked. The fact that they worked temporarily doesn't really change that.

It's like... mmm. Imagine a guy who sticks up a 7-11 and, instead of just bailing with the register contents immediately, sticks around getting drunk off malt liquor and ordering the cashier and customers to dance for his amusement. Now, what are you going to think? "That guy has things going all his own way; he got a bunch of money and booze and all these people are terrified of him and doing what he wants?"

Or are you going to think "This idiot is going to die in a hail of gunfire the second the cops roll up and he staggers out the front door waving his .22 around."

The EA is that drunk stick-up artist, in my mind. Everything they did was so obviously, painfully designed, not to build them up into a long-lasting, stable, Evil Empire, but to inflame the situation around them until they imploded under the weight of their own incompetence and arrogance.

Sidebar: I'm not sure about some of the more Federation-wide stuff you list them having gotten away with. The scope of Federation power and authority has, I think, changed somewhat since Day of Infamy came out. I think to the current production team, it is a much weaker polity overall than it once was.

-Merc
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Matrix Dragon
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20. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #18
 
   So, all their successes are actually done by someone else, or don't count. And all the fuckups are their fault. Got it.

>It's like... mmm. Imagine a guy who sticks up a 7-11 and, instead of
>just bailing with the register contents immediately, sticks around
>getting drunk off malt liquor and ordering the cashier and customers
>to dance for his amusement. Now, what are you going to think? "That
>guy has things going all his own way; he got a bunch of money and
>booze and all these people are terrified of him and doing what he
>wants?"

If you're one of the customers getting a gun waved at your face? You'd be shitting your pants, and wondering if someone is going to be able to stop him before he shoots you. The thing about villains isn't 'are they going to win?', it's 'what will happen before someone takes them down?'

>The EA is that drunk stick-up artist, in my mind. Everything they did
>was so obviously, painfully designed, not to build them up into a
>long-lasting, stable, Evil Empire, but to inflame the situation around
>them until they imploded under the weight of their own incompetence
>and arrogance.

So was Nazi Germany. So is North Korea, Zimbabwe and (some would say) Russia. Far too much of the Earth Alliances madness, both in B5 and here in UF, is not that far separated from reality. Governments become regimes because the wrong people have the power to enforce their agenda, and they honestly believe that they can make the system work the way they want it to.

Just because it looks insane from the outside doesn't mean that the people on the inside can see that.

Matrix Dragon, J. Random Nutter


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Mercutio
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Aug-15-14, 06:43 AM (EST)
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21. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #20
 
   LAST EDITED ON Aug-15-14 AT 06:45 AM (EDT)
 
>So, all their successes are actually done by someone else, or don't
>count. And all the fuckups are their fault. Got it.

What successes? The EA was being prepped to fail. They were no more having "successes" than my hypothetical stick-up man. Just about all of their major policy initiatives were designed to not work. In that sense, I suppose they were succeeding, but...

>>It's like... mmm. Imagine a guy who sticks up a 7-11 and, instead of
>>just bailing with the register contents immediately, sticks around
>>getting drunk off malt liquor and ordering the cashier and customers
>>to dance for his amusement. Now, what are you going to think? "That
>>guy has things going all his own way; he got a bunch of money and
>>booze and all these people are terrified of him and doing what he
>>wants?"
>
>If you're one of the customers getting a gun waved at your face? You'd
>be shitting your pants, and wondering if someone is going to be able
>to stop him before he shoots you. The thing about villains isn't 'are
>they going to win?', it's 'what will happen before someone takes them
>down?'

By this rubric, though, every nameless minion stormtrooper, demon, or Boomer who as carrying a grenade-equivalent on them was a major villain, because they held the power of life and death over a whole lot of people if they lobbed it right.

>>The EA is that drunk stick-up artist, in my mind. Everything they did
>>was so obviously, painfully designed, not to build them up into a
>>long-lasting, stable, Evil Empire, but to inflame the situation around
>>them until they imploded under the weight of their own incompetence
>>and arrogance.
>
>So was Nazi Germany. So is North Korea, Zimbabwe and (some would say)
>Russia.

... Nazi German was being run by people who were deliberately trying to make it fail? Wha?

>Just because it looks insane from the outside doesn't mean that the
>people on the inside can see that.

That's true, but it also doesn't make them not incompetent jokes.

-Merc
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Matrix Dragon
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22. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #21
 
   LAST EDITED ON Aug-15-14 AT 07:25 AM (EDT)
 
>>So, all their successes are actually done by someone else, or don't
>>count. And all the fuckups are their fault. Got it.
>
>What successes?

The ones I listed in the previous post that you claimed didn't count, because they were actually the evil plan of Clark's bosses instead.

>>So was Nazi Germany. So is North Korea, Zimbabwe and (some would say)
>>Russia.
>
>... Nazi German was being run by people who were deliberately trying
>to make it fail? Wha?

Nope. To the people in power in those countries, what they were doing made (to them at least) perfect sense. Because here's the thing. Right now, we know of one person in the entire Earth Alliance that was connected to the Mysterions. Just one. I don't doubt there were others here and there that knew they were working for someone else, but still, it'd be a handful at most.

Everyone else, the Night Watch, the Psi Corps, the politicians, the corrupt businessmen that chose to back Clark, the hate groups like the Church of Man, and, worst of all, the good people blinded by propaganda, lies and fear. They weren't working towards self-destructing. They believed they were working towards victory. The fact they were wrong, and the fact that the good guys beat them when the time came, doesn't make them a joke. It simply means the heroes were better.

>>Just because it looks insane from the outside doesn't mean that the
>>people on the inside can see that.
>
>That's true, but it also doesn't make them not incompetent
>jokes.

And that's where you and I disagree. Because to me, if they were incompetent, they wouldn't have lasted as long as they did against a superior foe.

Matrix Dragon, J. Random Nutter


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Terminus Est
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Aug-13-14, 09:02 PM (EST)
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14. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #0
 
   ...See, I look at this way.

Akio has an Aesir blood curse on him that pretty much prevents him from succeeding in anything major that he has a direct role in.

How do you circumvent something like that?

You get sneaky. You couch your true objective in a huge, convoluted plot and take the minor victory while your right hand man gets trounced; the minor one is what you wanted anyway, and while the big one would be nice and all, it's ultimately meaningless.

Want to take down one or two people? Aim for a planet. Something along those lines. And right now, he has a dangerously unguided missile aimed right at Gryphon, just aching for a chance to settle the score - and it's the kind of person he, historically, just can't fight against with everything he has, at least not right off the bat.

Watch the left hand instead of the right, is what I'm sayin'.


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Mercutio
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15. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #14
 
   Also too, the only way anyone has ever gotten any traction on the loose confederation of galactic badasses centered around Gryphon is through subterfuge.

Main force never, ever works. At this point, I'm of the firm opinion that Surtur could step through a rift into the heart of New Avalon at the head of all his legions, at the same time the Earth Alliance, Big Fire, the Kilrathi, the Cardassians, the Cylons, and the Ghost of Stephen Foster attacked the place, and the WDF/IPO would still contrive to find a way to win.

Gotta be sneaky.

-Merc
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Terminus Est
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16. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #15
 
   It also occurs to me, in retrospect, that Akio has even more on Gryphon. By participating in the tournament like he did, G tied himself to Oriphos. As... prince, I think? If the same roles even apply. That would make Akio pillar and Raven priestess. And as we all know from the Cephiro trinity... nothing with ties to the realm can harm the pillar.

This of course assumes that Oriphos is in fact a true mirror of Cephiro.


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Peter Eng
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19. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #16
 
   >It also occurs to me, in retrospect, that Akio has even more on
>Gryphon. By participating in the tournament like he did, G tied
>himself to Oriphos. As... prince, I think? If the same roles even
>apply. That would make Akio pillar and Raven priestess. And as we
>all know from the Cephiro trinity... nothing with ties to the realm
>can harm the pillar.
>
>This of course assumes that Oriphos is in fact a true mirror of
>Cephiro.

Interesting. Almost certainly unexpected in Akio's case, but it does make sense.

Now I'm wondering if Akio is planning on exploiting this opportunity, or if he's looking at it the way that oil workers looked at rod wax - as an annoyance that gets in the way of what he wants.

Peter Eng
--
Rod wax can be distilled to make petroleum jelly.


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BeardedFerret
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23. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #0
 
   >I made a joke about the absurdly cutoff Earth Queen plot in Book 3 of
>The Legend of Korra, and Jeanne said:
>
>>>(quietly shelves his plan for Ozai and Beria to kill Akio and take
>>>over the Black Rose)
>>
>>Oh please not. Akio is a joke as a villain.
>
>... I beg your pardon?
>
>--G.
>A, I would think that would mean you'd want him
>replaced, and B, What?

>-><-

So, after the last movement? Not laughing anymore.


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JeanneHedge
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24. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #23
 
   >>I made a joke about the absurdly cutoff Earth Queen plot in Book 3 of
>>The Legend of Korra, and Jeanne said:
>>
>>>>(quietly shelves his plan for Ozai and Beria to kill Akio and take
>>>>over the Black Rose)
>>>
>>>Oh please not. Akio is a joke as a villain.
>>
>>... I beg your pardon?
>>
>>--G.
>>A, I would think that would mean you'd want him
>>replaced, and B, What?

>>-><-
>
>So, after the last movement? Not laughing anymore.

Who is using Akio, pulling his strings behind the scenes? *That's* the real villain.

Jeanne


Jeanne Hedge
http://www.jhedge.com
1st Courier of the Heavenly Prophets for Tianxia
"Never give up, never surrender!"



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Peter Eng
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25. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #24
 
   >
>Who is using Akio, pulling his strings behind the scenes? *That's* the
>real villain.
>
>Jeanne
>

I'm not sure anybody's pulling his strings.

Yes, Surtur is the one who raised him up to his current position - but I think he's just let Akio loose, figuring that somebody who hates that strongly, and particularly somebody who hates Gryphon's family that strongly, is worth having around, regardless of what he does.

Arguably, this makes Akio a bit dangerous to Surtur, since there's no controls outside of "I made you, I can break you," but Surtur is probably confident that Akio can't create a power base sufficient to be a danger.

It makes me wonder if Surtur knows about the Oriphos project.

Peter Eng
--
Insert humorous comment here.


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Verbena
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26. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #25
 
   >I'm not sure anybody's pulling his strings.
>
>Yes, Surtur is the one who raised him up to his current position - but
>I think he's just let Akio loose, figuring that somebody who hates
>that strongly, and particularly somebody who hates Gryphon's family
>that strongly, is worth having around, regardless of what he does.
>
>Arguably, this makes Akio a bit dangerous to Surtur, since there's no
>controls outside of "I made you, I can break you," but Surtur is
>probably confident that Akio can't create a power base sufficient to
>be a danger.
>
>It makes me wonder if Surtur knows about the Oriphos project.

Honestly, I suspect Surtur is a lot sharper than even demons tend to think of him being. I strongly suspect the Castellan of working under different constraints than Akio realizes--especially that her ultimate loyalty doesn't lie with him. Not that she has the slightest intention of interfering with him, but she may be reporting to one of Surtur's subordinates on the side.

Also, come to think of it, she looks demonic and reasonably attractive, but we got no description beyond that. I wonder if she's another plant from Midgard? There's a small but nonzero chance she answers to Illyana, maybe? Not as if Akio would recognize the accent.

------
Fearless creatures, we all learn to fight the Reaper
Can't defeat Her, so instead I'll have to be Her


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mdg1
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27. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #26
 
  
>Also, come to think of it, she looks demonic and reasonably
>attractive, but we got no description beyond that. I wonder if she's
>another plant from Midgard? There's a small but nonzero chance she
>answers to Illyana, maybe? Not as if Akio would recognize the accent.
>
>------
> Fearless creatures, we all learn to fight the Reaper
> Can't defeat Her, so instead I'll have to be Her

Illyana lives with Hellboy. Her arrival is depicted in "Late Arrival" in the 6th volume of mini-stories, and she was still with him as of "Requiem For A Lensman"

Mario


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Star Ranger4
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28. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #25
 
   >Yes, Surtur is the one who raised him up to his current position - but
>I think he's just let Akio loose, figuring that somebody who hates
>that strongly, and particularly somebody who hates Gryphon's family
>that strongly, is worth having around, regardless of what he does.
>
And or it is the case that Surtur has pulled the pin on the Akio grenade knowing that whatever happens in the long run, Surtur can manipulate it to come out ahead.

>Arguably, this makes Akio a bit dangerous to Surtur, since there's no
>controls outside of "I made you, I can break you," but Surtur is
>probably confident that Akio can't create a power base sufficient to
>be a danger.
>
>It makes me wonder if Surtur knows about the Oriphos project.
>

I'd expect that Akio's danger to Surtur is a lot less than we see here. Then again, I *AM* a member in good standing of the "HE'S UNDER EVERY DARN BED" club, even if I've toned it down in the time since twilight wrapped.

But, as we've seen here, Akio seems to be using our own lack of concern against us. I'd been sort of looking on Akio's works as a joke and was just wondering when he'd get smacked down again myself. It does seem to appear that he's been using his apparent haplessness to lull all of us into a false position, just look at what he pulled off.


Of COURSE you wernt expecting it!
No One expects the FANNISH INQUISITION!
RCW# 86


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Berrik
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Jul-07-15, 06:07 AM (EST)
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29. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #0
 
   LAST EDITED ON Jul-07-15 AT 06:11 AM (EDT)
 
For all his plotting and scheming, Akio has been about as successful, and about as threatening, as Cobra Commander. Perhaps even less so... in the end, after all, Cobra Commander managed to outlast the Joes, live to a ripe old age, and work for a crime lord giving the Autobots grief. Gets away scot-free too, after the plot of the day is foiled :)

(Seriously, he honestly does show up in an episode of the 1986 Transformers cartoon.)


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Gryphonadmin
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30. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #29
 
   >For all his plotting and scheming, Akio has been about as successful,
>and about as threatening, as Cobra Commander.

So... haven't gotten around to reading OOTR M5, then, eh?

--G.
It's OK. I forgive you.
-><-
Benjamin D. Hutchins, Co-Founder, Editor-in-Chief, & Forum Mod
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zgryphon at that email service Google has
Ceterum censeo Carthaginem esse delendam.


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Matrix Dragon
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31. "RE: In Which Akio Is Called Out"
In response to message #30
 
   >So... haven't gotten around to reading OOTR M5, then, eh?

That, or it's the 'no, the credit for that victory actually goes to Surtur for manipulating Akio' idea that seems so oddly popular.

Matrix Dragon, J. Random Nutter


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