How many villains for this type of story would be too many?


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Thread: How many villains for this type of story would be too many?

  1. #1

    How many villains for this type of story would be too many?

    My story is a thriller where a the villains are a group going around kidnapping and raping people and the police are investigating the crimes trying to figure out who they are. It takes place in a modern city.

    I'm wondering when it comes to a gang of villains like that, how many are too many? Obviously, the higher in number they are, the more of a threat they are, and it makes them a bigger challenge to destroy therefore... But how high of a number would be too high in this type of story for these type of villains do you think?

  2. #2
    Put each villain in a chapter, with the police investigation; eg. if you have five villains (I wouldn't use more that five: the smaller the gang, the closer relationships within it), create five chapters, consisting of crimes and investigations. Save the sixth chapter for the recapitulation, for the "tightening of the rim" as it were around the five. Hope this helps.
    Last edited by Ken11; August 1st, 2019 at 09:13 AM.

  3. #3
    Oh okay, but there are scenes where more than one of the villains have to be in them though, and they have to work as a team.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by ironpony View Post
    Oh okay, but there are scenes where more than one of the villains have to be in them though, and they have to work as a team.
    To me, it would be more interesting if you concentraated at one character in each chapter; the others could support the chapter if you know what I mean.Think about it.

  5. #5
    Oh okay. Well I think for the story I have, I thnk I will need at least 7 cause they have to be in different places, doing different role in the plot. Is 7 too much, or should I go beyond 7, cause that means the villains are a bigger threat cause they have a larger number?

  6. #6
    Not too much difference between five and seven. Go for it.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Ken11 View Post
    Put each villain in a chapter, with the police investigation; eg. if you have five villains (I wouldn't use more that five: the smaller the gang, the closer relationships within it), create five chapters, consisting of crimes and investigations. Save the sixth chapter for the recapitulation, for the "tightening of the rim" as it were around the five. Hope this helps.
    ^This.

    Five villains seems more than enough to me. If the group becomes larger than this, you'll have too many personalities and egos to account for that might create more conflict between them that could hinder the main story. Also....more characters means a lot more character development and mechanics. If each of the first five chapters is going to deal with a villainous character, perhaps throw in a scene in every chapter with the police, to check in on their progress, and maybe what they know about the character being profiled in said chapter. Don't provide a lot of info, but rather a small piece of insight for the reader.

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  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by ironpony View Post
    My story is a thriller where a the villains are a group going around kidnapping and raping people and the police are investigating the crimes trying to figure out who they are. It takes place in a modern city.

    I'm wondering when it comes to a gang of villains like that, how many are too many? Obviously, the higher in number they are, the more of a threat they are, and it makes them a bigger challenge to destroy therefore... But how high of a number would be too high in this type of story for these type of villains do you think?
    Actually, you're wrong on all counts there, buddy. More people in the gang is a greater liability. More people = more of a chance that someone is going to change their minds about being involved, more chances someone's going to screw up and get them caught. Most rapists work alone in part because it's a private act but also because more people is a greater threat. Your partner in crime is a witness against you in court. I don't suggest having these people be a gang at all--at most a duo.

    Gangs don't evade the law by being hardcore on evidence extermination or safety in numbers. Safety in numbers is a herd mentality thing--not a pack mentality thing. Gangs are willing to throw away members for the greater good of the gang. Police need to prosecute someone, so someone low ranking and doing the dirty work is getting caught. The big wigs in the gang hide behind the curtain that lesser members provide. The ringleader can claim the reward without facing the time because he didn't pull the trigger. This is perhaps the biggest part of what makes mobs hard to take down--not that there's so many of them but because so many are expendable. They also engage in other methods of circumventing the law--such as political bribery and extortion.
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by seigfried007 View Post
    Actually, you're wrong on all counts there, buddy. More people in the gang is a greater liability. More people = more of a chance that someone is going to change their minds about being involved, more chances someone's going to screw up and get them caught. Most rapists work alone in part because it's a private act but also because more people is a greater threat. Your partner in crime is a witness against you in court. I don't suggest having these people be a gang at all--at most a duo.

    Gangs don't evade the law by being hardcore on evidence extermination or safety in numbers. Safety in numbers is a herd mentality thing--not a pack mentality thing. Gangs are willing to throw away members for the greater good of the gang. Police need to prosecute someone, so someone low ranking and doing the dirty work is getting caught. The big wigs in the gang hide behind the curtain that lesser members provide. The ringleader can claim the reward without facing the time because he didn't pull the trigger. This is perhaps the biggest part of what makes mobs hard to take down--not that there's so many of them but because so many are expendable. They also engage in other methods of circumventing the law--such as political bribery and extortion.
    You know I was going to say something along the lines of hold on a sec Siegfried I've been associated with several gangs in my lifetime but then I thought about and realised that those weren't gang's they were mafia families. And they treat you like family for life. So nevermind carry on. Gang's are different from Mafia. If you want a group of villains consider using a Mafia family instead of a gang.
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  10. #10
    Oh okay, it's just that I thought the bigger the gang (if they are considered a 'gang'), the more of a threat they are. Since I'm writing a screenplay, I use movies to compare, but imagine if in say The Dark Knight for example, Joker's gang only consisted of just five guys. It wouldn't be near as much of a threat compared to say, around 15, which it probably was I'm guessing. Batman having to take on 15 guys, is more exciting than five. Or in the movie Fight Club, the fact that the gang had so many members, made them more of a threat, or so I thought. But as for developing each character, not all of them were developed in both examples, and were there to make for a greater threat. So couldn't I write it like that, where a good amount of the members are just there for the threat and not all of them need character background?

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