6 minor characters that could rule the world of Shrek - part 1
(This was my Cracked.com pitch that fell through. I later used it for DnD 3.5 homebrew campaign with my friends (I was GM, the numbers 6-2 were premade characters fighting number 1. The movie "Tinker tailor soldier spy" was out that week, so we called the campaign "Mage baker piper princess pharmacist"). I thought I might post it here in the form of 2 to 6 parts).
Some pretenders you can see coming a mile away. Some can sneak up on you like a Superman on a little boy falling from a waterfall. Some hostile takeovers you can prevent by a quick chopping motion near the neck department. Others you can’t, because they have too good a publicity and too many followers thanks to all the drugs, candy and sexy wanton woman they give to the community.
These six are of the latter variety and (in my opinion) they could rule the world of Shrek if only they had some more ambition and/or slightly better luck. Yes, I can already hear you cry “That’s not a very likely situation, kind sir.” and I know that it certainly looks that way, my very polite and erudite readers. Here are six people working minor jobs that could rule the world of humanity if it lived in the Shrek
universe. And I will start with...
6. A baker
Who is (s)he?
A kindly baker that makes live cakes in the shapes of animals and ginger-bread men. Father of Gingy, one of Shrek’s friends and the most badass piece of dough you are likely going to see in a children’s cartoon. Yes , we are talking about the ultimate chessmaster, ruler behind the shadows and the powerhouse of raw magic that is only known as (ominous pause)… The Muffin Man. From the Drury Lane.
How will (s)he take over?
An army of gingerbread men of all sizes and shapes, absolutely loyal, crushing all of the human spirit, freedom, faces and terror-induced fecces under their baked feet, forever and ever. Wearing raincoats. With tiny dough spies setting ambushes to everyone foolish enough to catch them, torture them and believe a single word they say.
Why he never tried to take over?
Who said that he didn’t? Let’s see the first scene that ever mentioned… The Muffin Man.
Have you seen that? That look of pant-shitting terror that passes across Lord Farquaad ‘s face after the realisation of what has been said hits him.
That’s Lord Farquaad, a guy with enormous, well equiped army, a brutal ruler successfully persecuting all magical creatures and moving them right the hell out of his kingdom, and yet he looks like he’ll shit his pants on the mere possibility that… The Muffin Man… is helping and protecting them, because he knows that, despite all of his power, he can’t take him head on. And for a good reason, as we’ll see in Shrek 2.
That’s Mongo, Gingy’s big brother. And he was made in less than an hour! One moment, Shrek is escaping from jail, saying:
We'll never get in.
The castle's guarded.
There's a moat and everything!"
the very next moment is:
"-we're gonna need flour.
Lots and lots of flour."
"Fire up the ovens, Muffin Man!
We've got a big order to fill!" . Cue fight scene!
But there’s more to be learned from these scenes.
First of all, the Muffin Man has all the ingredients and big enough ovens to create a giant gingerbread man powerful enough to successfully storm a well-manned and armed castle in under an hour. That’s worrying enough as it is.
Second, it is not the first time occurrence, as shown by the reaction of castle’s guards. Their first panicked reaction is to attack the Gingerzilla with regular weapons, only angering him in the process. But, when the first wave of fear is over (and, lets be honest here, who wouldn’t panic after seeing a couple of tons of gingerbread approaching the castle you are ordered to protect?), a heroic sergeant takes control with a single command “Man the couldrons!” (we would have added: “..and fill the bastards with some hot milk!” but the dreaded PG rating and not writing the scenario had foiled us again). The men under him not only have barrells of milk and what looks like a giant esspresso machine at the ready, but are actually trained enough to do it with efficiency and precision in the middle of a terrifying situation.
Finally, all the repeated drills and training from hell pays off and the giant monstrosity goes down, never to return. Oh wait… It is not dead, just immobilised! We can clearly see it singing the tune during the ending! All that is needed is that Shrek (now the King’s son in law) orders the moat drained and Mongo is walking the earth again! But wait, there’s MORE!
Gingerbread men can be repaired, because at the end of Shrek Gingy has both of his legs crushed but at the beginning of Shrek 2, he is walking again. The repair seems to be taking some floor and whipped cream and gluing the replacement legs together. Oh, and they can eat meat, as we can see during the small gag with 3 blind mice. Now, this is where the things go from sinister to openly terrifying.
Imagine that The... Muffin Man... didn’t have less than an hour but the whole year to make his army. Imagine them coming in all shapes and sizes, from giant living siege engines that is Mongo over man shaped guards to tiny spies that is Gingy. Perfectly loyal, indestructible except by being hit with milk (or, as we here at cracked like to call it, gingeronite), the whole divisions of them, some of those divisions playing the support roles of medical corps we have in the human armies, repairing the others... Smarter of them, commanders, wearing the raincoats to protect them from harm that is milk, taking over lands and destroying the kingdoms’ only weapons, one cow at a time. And who can say they have to be in the shapes of men? We see cookie animals in Shrek 4ever After. Put some candy blades on Gingy’s hands, and you have a tiny Wolverine made in bakery! Add some more hands or build them in the forms of elephants with more than two tusks, put some siege weapons on them and you have the siege of Minas Tirith all over again!
The only reason The… Muffin Man… doesn’t take over all of the kingdoms of the world is because he is already ruling from shadows. He already has a deal with the king of Far Far Away and it goes like this: The... Muffin Man... will deploy his army of almost indestructible gingerbread golems in the defense of the kingdom if the need arises and the king asks him to. In turn, The Muffin Man will be allowed to live his retirement as a simple baker, all of his crimes forgiven, and will tone down his crazy scientist’s experiments in baking in return. In Shrek universe, "Got milk?" commercials are probably equivalent of NRA commercials we have in our universe.
The only reason he helped Shrek storm the castle was to prevent the civil war that would have happened if his former team-mate got the throne,got corrupted with power and tried to take The Muffin Man down. The teammate that is…
5. The pharmacist. (click for part 2)