Short Story: Studying Supervillains
Once, when he was a student, he studied supervillains for a school project. Specifically, how some supervillains, despite doing horrible, atrocious things, still managed to have a large fan base rooting for them to survive (or even win) in the movies.
How did they do it?
Why did people like them?
He observed and studied, half to get good grades, the other half to see if there was any magic secret he could apply to his own life.
His conclusion, in the end, was that a supervillain’s popularity boiled down to three ‘good’s: good writing, good acting, and good looks. That, and they lived in a fictional world that didn’t affect the readers/viewers, and there were plenty of things that they could get away with that would never fly in the real world.
So he didn’t learn any magic secret to popularity, but he got a good grade for that project. That was nice.
Then supers started to appear, and with them came superheroes and supervillains.
The school project, which he had thrown away but never quite forgotten, sprang back to the forefront of his mind.
This time, he would find what he was looking for.