What if the 2016 US presidential election was happening in another universe? What would that race look like? Who would the candidates be?
I’ve a few ideas. You probably do, too.
Some are spot on. Some are a bit of a stretch. But before I share them with you, let me be clear: I am not endorsing one candidate over the other — well, not entirely. I mean, I’m trying to play fair. A little bit.
Think of this fun little diversion as capturing the overall public opinion of Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton — the demagogue nominee versus the calculating politician — and spinning it up as cast of characters in the Marvel Universe. Or attending Greendale Community College.
With that bit of qualification out of the way, let’s see what the 2016 US election would look like if it took place in another universe.
13. Emperor Sheev Palpatine Versus Princess Leia Organa
Emperor Palpatine is the galaxy’s wolf in sheep’s clothing, saying everything he has to say to ensure his quest for power is successful.
Princess Leia Organa is the tough-as-nails leader — both a diplomat and a fighter. Often perceived as cold and calculating, she always has the galaxy’s best interests at heart.
12. Montgomery Burns Versus Edna Krabappel
Charles Montgomery Plantagenet Schicklgruber Burns owns Springfield. Mr. Burns runs the city’s nuclear power plant, without care or concern for his employees or the community in which they live. Burns can’t even remember their names. It doesn’t matter, though, as long as he’s building wealth and power.
School teacher Edna Krabappel, who holds a master’s from the prestigious Bryn Mawr College, once aspired to change the lives of Springfield’s children through education.
11. Goldfinger Versus M
Auric Goldfinger is the richest man in England, though he has spread his wealth throughout the world so as to avoid paying taxes. He owns various business, all named after himself, including Auric Enterprises and Auric Stud. Goldfinger is so greedy, he’s willing to lie, cheat and steal to build his personal wealth. He is also a braggart, often talking about what an expert shot he is.
M is the cold and calculating leader of MI6, once referred to as the “Evil Queen of Numbers.” Her ability to lead MI6 is called into question many times and she’s often the subject of internal review or public inquiry. Through it all, M manages to successfully stop a number of world threats and terrorist operations.
10. Norman Osborn Versus Maria Hill
The founder of Oscorp, the company he named after himself, millionaire Norman Osborn is secretly the Green Goblin. Osborn was once an honest businessman, but his need for power has corrupted his every decision.
Maria Hill is the director of S.H.I.E.L.D. Her tactics are often questioned, her methods always under a microscope, and there’s always a Congressional investigation just around the corner. But Hill does it all to keep the world safe from far more dangerous adversaries.
9. Pierce Hawthorne Versus Annie Edison
Pierce Hawthorne earned his money the old-fashioned way: His father gave it to him. Growing up rich and detached from the real world honed Pierce’s arrogance and narrow-mindedness. He says whatever he wants whenever he wants without considering the consequences.
Annie Edison is an overachiever, diving deep into any activity she sets her sights on. If she doesn’t get what she wants, Annie doubles down, grabbing the bull by the horns (and possibly throwing a tantrum or two if necessary). She’s got some skeletons in her closet, but they’re not important enough to slow her down.
8. The Master Versus River Song
Doctor Who’s archenemy, the Master, is a cunning, intelligent, dangerous foe who is often characterized by how much he is like the Doctor. Oh, and how much of a narcissist (and sociopath) he can be.
River Song, jailed for reasons we don’t to spoil for those who haven’t seen the show, is a mix between Ellen Ripley and Indiana Jones — a whip-smart professional who is rarely in need of saving and always ready to save those around her.
7. Count Rugen Versus Princess Buttercup
Count Tyrone Rugen is the cruel, six-fingered torturer who killed Inigo Montoya’s father. When facing Montoya in a duel, Rugen runs until he can ambush the swordsman.
Princess Buttercup is the Midwest girl who would rather die on principle than marry the king by force. While trapped in the system, Buttercup does what she can for the people of her kingdom.
6. Lex Luthor Versus Amanda Waller
Lex Luthor is the power-mad American billionaire bent on ruling Metropolis (if not the world). He is charismatic, famous and narcissistic. But people love him. He even ran for president once. And won.
Amanda Waller is the no-nonsense, high-ranking government official. Not always popular, Waller uses her political guile, endless connections and sheer force of will to get things done.
5. Lord Voldemort Versus Professor McGonagall
It’s not just about power for Harry Potter’s nemesis, Tom Marvolo Riddle, a.k.a. Lord Voldemort. Voldemort, a blood purist, also wants to rid the world of Muggles and Mudbloods.
Professor Minerva McGonagall is prim and proper. Hard to approach at first, a bit severe and overly idealistic, McGonagall is tough, can be unfair, sometime contradictory, but in the end a brave protector of and champion for her students.
4. The Wizard Versus Professor Marvel
When Dorothy and her friends first meet The Wizard of Oz, he is an angry, fiery, floating head that screams demands and delegates impossible tasks to his constituents.
This is in contrast to the “man behind the curtain,” Professor Marvel, a caring individual who takes into consideration the individual and helps elevate the individual by showing them what they truly can become. Oh, and yea, he does have some faults. But don’t we all?
3. Walter Donovan Versus Marion Ravenwood
American businessman Walter Donovan wants only one thing: immortality. He doesn’t care that obtaining that goal means working with Nazis or sacrificing innocents.
Marion Ravenwood, a hard-drinking woman with a few skeletons in her closet, is resourceful and committed, her heart always in the right place.
2. The Borg Queen Versus Kathryn Janeway
Oh, the Borg Queen. Someone you do not want to mess with. What does she want? To assimilate the universe. Make every species part of her hive mind. Oh, but she doesn’t have to be a part of that hive mind. After all, her purpose is to bring order to chaos. She can’t do that if she’s just a mindless drone.
Captain Kathryn Janeway, the first female captain of a Federation Starship (at least with respect to starring in the lead role of a Star Trek television show), is utterly uncompromising with regard to personal morals and Starfleet principles and fiercely devoted to her crew. She can be a bit cold and hard to approach, but Janeway’s a good friend when you get to know her.
1. Saruman Versus Aragorn
Sent to Middle-earth to defeat the evil Sauron, Saruman the White is eventually corrupted by his desire usurp Sauron and steal his power. Saruman is all about law and order on Middle-earth, and that singular focus leads to his downfall.
Aragorn, son of Arathorn II, is the descendant of the first king of Númenor, Elros Tar-Minyatur; the twin brother of Elrond, and — look, it’s complicated. Let’s just say that Aragorn is the true heir of Isildur (a king, so to speak) and a guy who gets things done, no matter what. Oh, and he protects the little people around him (in this case, Hobbits).
Got more ideas? Add ‘em to the comments section!
Check out Movie Pilot's badass women in pop culture video below and see how many of these ladies could make a good candidate: