HowTo:Pretend You Have an Archenemy

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Pretending that you have an archenemy is a fun-filled pastime suitable for the whole family. It is very easy and can be done anywhere! It can also make you feel very important depending on how into it you get. Although it is highly enjoyable and recommended to all children over the age of five, it can be very time-consuming and you can expect it to occupy your time for months on end. It can also be very tricky if you don't know the proper procedure.

A Prime Candidate

Step 1: Find an Archenemy[edit]

This is, by far, the hardest step. The trick is to find a pretend archenemy that:

  1. Is believable
  2. You can defeat
  3. Does not know you exist

Condition three is easily the most important. If your archenemy pays enough attention to you and notices that you are pretending they are your archenemy, they may start to play along, and that makes it less fun.

Condition one can be hard to meet. You shouldn't just pick an enemy at random, but rather put some thought into who your pretend enemy could be. Your motives for choosing an enemy could range from simple (They got a better score than you on a test) to extremely complex (After fighting in the war for galactic peace and recovering the space crystal, your side-kick got all the glory). Here are a few sample motives:

  • Enemy candidate out-air guitared you: This is a big one. Nobody likes it when they just delivered a killer performance of "Smoke on the Water" on their air guitar only to have somebody who doesn't have carpal tunnel syndrome show up and deliver a flawless performance of "Trogdor" on their air guitar. As if to add insult to injury, their air guitar was autographed and had one less string than yours.
  • Enemy Candidate ignored you: Yeah, that's right! They had the nerve to ignore you! All you wanted was a simple favor, but could they pull themselves away from their dying grandparent and acknowledge you? No! How selfish can a person get?

Step 2: Get a Secret Base[edit]

This is easily the most important step of the process. Without a secret base, nobody will believe that you have an archenemy. What you put in your secret base is up to you, however there are a few things you'll absolutely need. Here's a sample shopping list for you:

  • Computer: Every secret base needs a computer. This computer is to be for very basic functions such as typing "I wiLl k1LL (Enemy)!" over and over, or for drawing out battle plans to fight your enemy using advanced programs like "The GIMP" or even the legendary "paint".

Taping their face onto a blow-up doll is not appropriate.

  • Posters and life-sized cutouts of your archenemy: Another biggie. Without these, nobody will believe you have the desire to destroy this person. The more posters you have and the bigger they are, the more convincing you'll be. My pretend archenemy would not respond to my e-mail requests for pictures of her, so I just wrote her name in white-out over a picture of Darth Vader.
An impregnable barrier of security
  • No windows: There can be absolutely no windows whatsoever in your base. If outsiders can see into your base, it'll be all over for you. If the space you're using came with windows, buy some curtains to keep people from seeing in. I use Crayola® Crayon curtains to protect my base.

Beyond that, it's really up to you. Your base can be as small as a bedroom or as large as an abandoned shopping center. Once all that's done, you'll have to name your base. Naming your base is actually simpler than you might think. Here is the general pattern you should stick to:



If your initials are "K.K." do not name your base "The K.K. Cave".

You may also wish to substitute your name for your initials, and that works too. Once your base has been secured, furnished, and christened, it's time to get to the meat of pretending you have an archenemy: Actually fighting and defeating[1] your archenemy.

Step 3: Wage War[edit]

This is the most time consuming aspect of pretending to have an archenemy. This step can last anywhere from a few months to a few more months. Though, time consuming, it is also the easiest step, as there is only one goal:

  • WIN

Winning is all you need to focus on, but you can't rush your battle. The war you pretend to wage can be fought in any way, but it helps to follow the basic phases of waging a pretend war against a pretend foe.

Or you could just draw it out as long as possible and help make your buddies in the military-industrial-complex get ever richer.

Phase 1: Espionage[edit]

You'll first want to gather information about your would-be foe. In this phase, it's best to remember the old adage:

“Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.”

~ Marlon Brando on spying on pretend enemies

Very closer. If you can't smell your enemy's breath, you are too far away. The best strategy for this phase is to live in the same house as your archenemy. I was able to stay in my enemy's home for eight weeks before she realized I was there. I hid in her shower, so I'm actually a little surprised that it took that long. Be sure to log all of your discoveries in a single notebook. Make sure to write "Secret Discoveries" on the cover in vibrantly-colored permanent marker so that it's easier for you to find in case you lose it.

Phase 2: Dramatic Encounter[edit]

This is where it all begins for both of you: Your first dramatic encounter. The first encounter can be as mundane as bumping into them at an unabandoned shopping center, or as deliberate as bombarding their home with molotov cocktails. Unlike previous steps, which left many aspects to the pretender, this phase has a set turn of events you ABSOLUTELY MUST FOLLOW.

First, you'll want to make eye contact. To do this, you may need to get their attention. This could be especially challenging if your encounter takes place in a crowded area. The best way to get their attention is to yell for them and wave your arms randomly while jumping in the air. Use a starting pistol if you have to. If you try all of this and still cannot get them to notice you[2], consider grabbing them by the head and make them make eye contact with you. Ignore their screams of confused terror, this is good for both of you.

As much as you'd like your first dramatic encounter to look like this, it probably won't.

Next it's time to call the battle to an opening. Begin immediately after making eye contact by squinting your eyes as much as possible, taking special care not to close your eyes, as doing so would result in you being unable to see your enemy. After squinting at them for an hour and a half, clench your teeth together and lift the upper right portion of your lips, taking special care to quiver it as you do so. After all of this has taken place, your pretend foe may begin to shuffle uncomfortably or tell you to get away from them. This is your cue! As quickly as you can, yell out your pseudo-rival's name at the top of your lungs, taking special care to drag out all of the vowels in their name. The more the vowels are dragged out, the more people will believe that you'll settle for nothing less than this person's eternal rest.

Now for the first battle of your imaginary war. Begin by throwing some kind of object at them. Continue to scream, but this time you'll want to scream out unintelligible streams of gibberish. Ignore them as they exclaim with terror and call you insane. You're not insane; they are for thinking they can win! Which brings up an interesting point: Make sure you lose.

In order to achieve maximum dramatic effect, you need to take the fall on this one. Find some way to be hopelessly crushed by your artificial adversary, whether it be by being leveled by the friends who were with her at the time as innocent bystanders join in on the fun, or by them running away. No matter what happens, your first dramatic encounter will always end the same.

Phase 3: Defeat Their Evil Army![edit]

After serving your prison sentence or successfully evading your assault charges, it's time to fight the war! After losing the first battle, vow to never let that happen again. However, your pretend foe has amassed a mighty force[3]! Here's how to go about waging the war.

Part One: Pick a Game[edit]

Find a video game in your house. A war type game works best, but in a pinch, an RPG should suffice.

Part Two: Make the Story Your Own![edit]


If possible, make sure you set the handicap in your favor!

This is the best part! Take the original context of the game, then use your imagination to make it seem like the game is about you fighting your hypothetical rival.

Phase 4: Final Battle Time![edit]

This is it: The climactic showdown between you and the purest form of pretend evil. This will end it one way or the other. Are you man enough to overcome your enemy?

That's what I thought!

Begin by lying in wait for them in a location they go to every day. That's right: Their bathroom. When they enter, they may seem shocked to see you, but don't be fooled! They've been expecting you. Open the fight by proclaiming "This ends now!" If they ask what you're talking about, for the love of God, ignore them! They're trying to do what all great archenemies do: Trying to play mind games with you. Don't fall for it!

Make sure to get the first hit in! Do this by grabbing a tube of toothpaste and squeezing it down their throat. This not only tips the scales in your favor, but also prevents them from screaming while you defeat them. Now that they're immobilized, use this chance to finish them off! As fast as you can, fill their bathtub with water. Be sure to hold your target down or they might escape! Once the bathtub is full to the brim, dump their struggling body into the tub. Now quickly! Throw a radio or a toaster into the tub before they are able to get out! If they shake violently, shit themselves, and the room begins to smell like burnt bacon, then congratulations! You have successfully killed your pretend archenemy. Wasn't that fun?

Step 4: Repeat[edit]

Now that you've finally defeated your archenemy, there's only one thing left to do: Find a new mark. You'll need to find a whole new foe for a whole new reason. You'll need to reconfigure your base. Then you'll have to wage war anew. The trials and tribulations that pretending to have an archenemy provides last forever...

...Or at least it would. Unfortunately, the evidence against you was quite strong, and you've just been put on death row. Sitting there in solitary confinement, you look back on your days of conquest against your foe. You sigh melancholically, look to the heavens and smile.

It's fun to pretend.


  1. Very important
  2. Which seems highly unlikely considering that wasn't a starting pistol I gave you. My bad.
  3. Not really, though. Remember: This is all just pretend!
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