If you've seen Marvel's Jessica Jones then you know that Kilgrave's ability to mind control others makes him one of the scariest villains on TV. But what if I told you that some real criminals have the same power?
Back in 2012, Vice made a documentary about a Colombian drug called Scopolamine, which is also known as Devil's Breath. If this drug is inhaled or mixed in a drink it supposedly renders you incapable of free will. Criminals give it to rich people in order to rob them — once the drug takes effect they simply have to ask the victim to take them to the closest ATM and give them all their money. In other words, they suddenly have the power of Kilgrave.
"You wait a minute and when you see it kick in, then you know that you own that person. You can guide them wherever you want. It's like they're a child. You say, 'Take me to your house, give me your checkbook, take out your savings, give me your credit card numbers,' just like that."
In addition to turning you into a slave, Scopolamine can make you forget everything that happened. You will wake up in a random location, without knowing what happened the night before. The only way you will know is when you realize all your things have been stolen — or if you've been raped.
The perhaps scariest part about the drug is that you can't tell if a person is on it. You act and look like a completely normal person, so no one will stop you from whatever you are about to do.
The drug is mostly used in Colombia, but there have been a few reports of its use in Europe. The safest way to protect yourself against Scopolamine is to never accept drinks from a stranger or leave your drink unattended. We all know how badly Jessica Jones suffered after Kilgrave's abuse, and it's scary to think that somebody could do the same to you in real life. If you need a reminder of how terrifying mind control can be, check out this clip of Kilgrave from Jessica Jones.
And if you would like to watch the full Vice documentary, here it is: