I'm not a writer; I'm not that good with grammar . . . honestly, I'm hardly literate, but I love comic books and want to talk about them.
The Dark Side of the 9-5
Supervillains get a bad rap. Not everyone takes the time to appreciate the massive multi-level organizations that these individuals create from scratch (most of the time). Sure, they are murderous, thieving sinners who regularly prey on the weak, but the innate business acumen of many of them is unbelievable. These antagonists build massive empires that expand beyond international borders and teeter between legitimate and illegitimate business. Characters like: Black Mask, The Penguin, and Wilson Fisk, have structured complex conglomerates that create employment opportunities for criminals that accurately mock a normal 9-5 with benefits. Some of these villains started with legit businesses and then use them to build something more dastardly, like Normal Osborn. These top-dogs engage a multitude of henchmen in gainful employment, but of course; working on the shadier side of the system comes with some risks.
Pillars of Progression (Somebody Asked Me #4)
Somebody Asked Me, "If you were going to sign-on as part of a well-known criminals organization, whose team would you join?" An interesting question, that really comes down to personal goals and risk management.
You need to ask yourself, "Why am I becoming a criminal? What are my goals?" These are very important questions that may prove to have life or death answers down the road. Is your goal to make a little money because you got laid off from your job, your wife left, and you got hungry twins at home? Is your to rule your city/country/the world, because you have delusions of grandeur and you feel the world owes you something? Is your goal just to defeat a particular entity or hero because you feel that they have wronged you in some way earlier in life? Or maybe it's a bit of them all or none at all... Either way, you need to understand your goal, because it feeds into the decision-making process. The next thing that should cross into your mind is how determined are you to meet that goal? There are many ways to reach one's objective, some paths are long and methodical, while others can be quick but hazardous. Ultimately, whichever organization you choose, dictates your pace and odds of getting to that endpoint...
The Selection Process: A Good Job
Like any good job prospect, you want to fully review your options and there are a LOT of options. If you are the type of person who is just trying to make some money for your family, then there are plenty y of good options for you, that offer a wide range of openings in many different fields and are relatively low-risk roles. Jobs like:
-Maintaining one of Wilson Fisk's subsidiaries (perhaps in an accounting or administrative role),
-Being a croupier in the Iceberg Casino,
-Getting involved in politics as a lobbyist for the Court of Owls, or even
-Basic custodial work on Palpatine's Death Star.
These roles offer examples of the possibilities out there for low-level criminals that deliver a lower degree of risk. You will be a nameless cog in a massive, evil machine, where you may never make much vertical progress (but luckily for you could probably cheat and murder your way up if that's your sort of thing).
The thing to note (while the risk in these organizations is still relatively low) is that you are still technically working for criminals, regardless of how legit you or it may feel. Bad things can still happen. The Iceberg Casino can be shot up by competitors, The Owls might make you the fall guy for some political scandal, and I mean...the Death Star..."no bigger than a womp rat"...enough said.
Bigger and Badder Things
Maybe your goals are more ambitious or your belief in the opposition of the existence of socio-economic systems is so strong that you want to start your criminal career elsewhere so that you can be part of the downfall of a specific culture or ideal. You're going to want to find a place to work that has more direct 'aggressive' goals. Or maybe the other guys just aren't hiring, so your options are limited. You hear on the streets that there is some movement in the underbelly of society and some big players are getting together fresh meat. As you are scrolling through your Henchman App, you note the various listings:
-Someone named Punchline is gathering roughly 100 people to build a new Joker-Land and also spread a bit of chaos,
-Red Skull is scraping together some "enthusiasts" for coordinated attacks on a few major capitals,
- Jervis Tetch needs about 3 dozen individuals for a "trip" somewhere, but it also says "Paid with Experience,"
-Doc Ock has a posting for people "willing to undergo minor exoskeletal services"
-The last one just says "PYG," with a barn and lipstick emoji next to it.
Before you make any decision based on job or pay you're going to want to think about your boss.
The Hiring Manager
The naturally occurring risk that is associated with each criminal boss should be your deciding factor.
It doesn't matter how much you hate Batman or the Gotham elite, signing on with the Joker is just a poor idea. No matter your rank/level within his plot, you are constantly on the verge of getting killed. If you happen to be in a position where you are physically near the Joker, at any given point, he might just shoot you in the head. He could right in the middle of giving you an assignment and just blow your brain right out. He could be happy, he could be mad, he could have been aiming at the moth in the corner, but either way; you're done for. Even if you aren't assigned to personal Joker detail, he might have one of your teammates shoot you either for fun or so there are fewer witnesses. Then even if you survive just being on the job (like Jonny Frost from "Joker"), Joker goons are always priority #1 on the Bat's to-do list so you're just setting yourself up for failure.
Taking a Mad Hatter job could be much simpler. Probably some pretty simple gigs too. Kidnap a blonde girl, make her wear a blue dress and then maybe rob a bank. If you're lucky, you'll be wearing the hypno-rabbit masks the whole time and you won't even have to think much about the job until you wake up. Very low odds that Tetch will murder you himself, beatdown from a vigilante, medium risk, but payoff potential medium-low because your team is probably pretty small.
Best Option For Success
The mistake you don't want to make is assuming the villain's goals and visions are the same as yours. This may look like a company, but there are still a great many differences. You need to remember what you're in the game for and know who to undercut and when to keep your head down. Your best bet to get to the top is somewhere where the biggest guys won't notice you (you don't want to be eaten by Killer Croc, or snapped in half by Bane), and there aren't too many actual smart people to stop your rise (I feel like it can't be that hard to outperform other stormtroopers).