Riders On The Storm

Remembering Famous Minions
March 22, 2010
For every hero there is a villain, but time and time again the men taking all the risks are forgotten, I'm speaking of course of Minions. Minions have the most thankless job in the hero villain universe; their working conditions are hazardous and compensation seems wildly unfair if not non-existent in most cases. Minions are usually ill equipped and never given more then a moments thought in their victories or more often their losses. This article is in memoriam of them.

The Foot Clan are a motley crew of ninjas distinguishable only by multicolored outfits. They are the henchmen of Shredder of course, from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle Fame. Shredder went with the quantity over quality approach with these guys, which seems like a good idea on paper but their obvious lack of combat skills is only intensified when they show up in great numbers. Friendly fire is usually unavoidable and as illustrated below they are often limited to fuse bombs and other crude weaponry that often end up causing injury on their own side due to lack of accurate throwing and unfamiliarity with the weapon.

The don masks to conceal their faces, unfortunately this cuts down on their peripheral vision leading them to walk blindly into harms way. The most unfortunate of all their circumstances is that shredder has equipped them with some sort of combustible agent in their bodies that causes them explode after too much trauma to the body is endured. Not only are they expected to travel back and forth through time without social confusion but they are also forced to take the time to make dramatic entrances such as training pterodactyls to fly them into combat zones, scaling bridges and operate futuristic surfboards.

Although their uniforms are intimidating, a stiff breeze could knock these guys over, the turtles are well aware of this and in some instances they are known to have picked up a Foot soldier and bash him off the floor from side to side in an attempt to break the spirit of any on looking enemies.

Rock soldiers are a slightly more menacing Minion but although they show up in smaller quantities they seem to have no more or less combat training but rather equipped with experimental weaponry. In 1991 the phrase Hammer Time was taken more seriously but to none more then the rock soldiers themselves.

Storm troopers often suffer the same fate as the aforementioned minions. Although working for the most powerful empire in the galaxy the training program for such a position is lackluster at best, even in the ides of a battle aboard their very ship, several Storm Troopers are still unaware that something out of the ordinary is going on. Communication between such great numbers is a problem that went unresolved for years.

Their armor is clunky and by no stretch of the imagination will the suit withstands the blast of a laser.

Their uniforms suffer from the same flaws of the British uniform in the American revolutionary war, while they were prestigious and intimidating it did not leave many opportunities for camouflage in a time of gorilla warfare. Weapons training must not have been a priority because not one storm trooper is able to hit a human target; they just fire blindly into the general direction of an enemy hoping for the best when the smoke clears. What the Storm Troopers lack in combat training or communication skills they make up for in great numbers.

Storm Troopers are all cloned from the same DNA in order to produce mass amounts of them but as the empire advanced it's blitzkrieg of the galaxy they soon learned it is not the size of the dog in the fight that matters.

Winkies are an unfortunate case all together, they are forced to wear heavy clothing in the unrelenting heat of OZ, their uniform provides limited to no forms of protection much like the Storm Trooper and their spirit is so broken down that in the event of their czar being killed they don't hesitate in all Hailing Dorothy as their new master. Individuality must be stripped away much like the boot camp training for the marine corp, but never built back up. They are so disconnected that when a lion, a tin man and a scarecrow dress in their uniform they go unnoticed.

Although large in size the Winkies fall victim to their own lack of fighting skills not unlike the previously mentioned minions, at one point they get the drop on the Scarecrow, Lion and Tin Man and ambush them in the hills, unfortunately even with a surprise attack they are unable to overpower their prey. Winkies do show more intelligence then their co-minions the Flying Monkeys but in the monotony of their daily marching they often disregard speech and digress into a monotone chant.

Goombas are at the will of Bowser but seem only to wait for trouble to come to them, they roam around aimlessly until Mario attempts to cross their paths. From my understanding they stem from mutated shitake mushrooms but posses no threat unless you come in direct contact with a given side of them. A simple stomp on the head will put your run of the mill goomba out of commission. They tried a different model of goomba for a live action Mario but due to public outcry the idea was scrapped and only referenced in a derogatory manner.

A similar and slightly improved upon concept for the goomba made appearances in the Mega Man series known as the met. The Met have hard hats that can withstand most attacks from Megaman but once they emerge from their hats defeat is usually imminent.

Agents are quite literally agents of the matrix that keep the homeostasis of the human matrix in check. In the first movie they were a force to be reckoned with and there seem to be only 3 interchangeable ones. They were quick and well trained in combat but after the defeat of their smith program the matrix scrambled to combat the problem but in it's compulsive reaction it went with the quantity over quality approach, disregarding the failure rate of such an option.

This tactic much like the sequels proved to be ineffective and ruined the credibility and lore of the original.

The Putty Patrol are minions derived from putty sculptures that through some voodoo magic come to life to fight off the Power Rangers. They have not been gifted with the process of speech so they mumble incoherently to each other in a desperate attempt to formulate a strategy.

Theologians and scientists alike have debated on whether or not a Putty person can feel pain or remorse but their basic knowledge of karate suggests there is a thought process-taking place. They pose no real threat to the Power Rangers but more of a speed bomb until the actual monster of the week can be enlarged to the size of a skyscraper.

Last but certainly not least is Jaws from the James Bond movies. Jaws is a different kind of minion, he's more of an independent muscle for hire. He's worked for 2 James Bond Villains in two different movies including Karl Stromberg in The Spy Who Loved Me and Hugo Drax in Moonraker. Standing at 7 foot 2 and a lean 350 pounds, Jaws uses brute force and his legendary metal teeth to kill his victims, his style of murder of course being biting through the jugular vein. Jaws seemed to always work for someone who was trying to make a perfect or separate race of people for a new world, maybe this was his internal pain of being abnormal in society coming out or these guys just paid the best but these things aside he was physically 007's most formidable opponent. Jaws can survive dropping from a plane as well as car and ski lift crashes. Even in obscure circumstances he can achieve feats of strength thought to be impossible by most humans.

For all his baddassery jaws redeems himself in the end. He falls in love with a woman of the new perfect race of people at the end of Moonraker. This change of heart leads him to assist James bond in destroying the space ship and getting back to earth safely.[/b]

I imagine the plight of the minion was much like veterans returning home from the war in Vietnam, no one seemed to understand what went wrong with such great numbers and weapons at their disposal and only time and education will enlighten us to what they went through. Minions are the middle children of history as a wiser man then myself once said, and maybe someday we can learn to appreciate them for their sacrifices in the past and we can look towards the future with a new hope and understanding.

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