Over the past couple months, Fr. Guanella and I have been watching a couple shows about once a week: The Rings of Power and Kenobi. Throughout the shows, we noticed that a couple characters stuck out to both of us, namely the villains, the evil lord Sauron and the evil Darth Vader. For those unfamiliar with these famous villains, they exemplify something nostalgic about villains, for they possess an unforgettable twisted psychosis. In short, they suffer the illusion that they are righteous while they commit horrendous deeds. Indeed, such is the case of all good villains. Joker from Batman, for example, is truly psychotic: he delights in chaos and sees good in ensuing chaos. Thanos believes he is a savior by murdering half of the overpopulated universe. Sauron likewise believes he is healing the world by killing those he deems imperfect. Darth Vader kills children in the name of providing order to his galaxy.
These villains are truly scary and villainous because they are so inhuman: they defy the most human parts of us, namely reason and love. One could almost imagine reasoning with Scar from The Lion King, or even the Evil Queen from Snow White; these villains at least desire beauty and kingship. The truly evil villains, however, desire not even themselves because they cannot see the world as God sees it. It is as if they are blind to goodness, reason, and love. Yet such is the price of sin; it makes us inhuman, scary, and unreasonable. Villains exaggerate what is subtle within each of us, for deep down within us all is that horrific tendency toward unreflective arrogance that is a blindness to how things really are. Evil convinces us that we are righteous, and it blinds us to our need for God. It is so easy to convince ourselves that we are decent people; but God does not want us to be decent people, He wants us to be perfect saints. It is so easy to convince ourselves that our worldview is righteous and perfect; but God does not want our plan, He wants His plan.