The Cost of Becoming a Supervillain

The Straight Economics on Menacing Your Nemeses

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It’s not easy being a supervillain. Just when you think you’re going to make that big score, in swoops some meddling do-gooder to send you back to square one. Or, worse, a supermax prison. Sometimes though, it pays to break bad. Here’s a closer look at the costs of evildoing.

£4 million: Underground lair

An impenetrable mountainside fortress may *look* cool, but good luck getting the pizza guy to deliver… Standard advice says you shouldn’t spend more than 30% of your income on housing, so you may need to steal a crown jewel or two to afford this Bond villain’s paradise. For those supervillaining on a budget, why live inside an active volcano when you can live next to one for as low as $10,000 on Hawaii’s Big Island?

$16,000: Blofeld swivel chair

The black leather swivel chair famously used by Donald Pleasence’s Blofeld fetched $16,000 at auction in 2014, but you can find your own vintage version for £1,323. Just try to limit the sprees with your new black card. Studies show we’re willing to spend up to 100% more when paying with credit.

$163 million: Your own “death ray”

That’s the price tag the US Navy shelled out for its “megawatt-class laser” superweapon. Doomsday devices don’t come cheap, so shop around. And, since we typically buy with our emotions, maybe sleep on that death ray purchase before pulling the trigger. (Good advice for after you buy, too!)

Up to $1MM+: Shark tank

Dangling your arch nemesis over a tank of hungry sharks is going to cost you an arm and a leg (sorry): anywhere from $15,000 to $1 million. Planning to put your death trap on credit? Use a tool like this one to calculate how long it’ll take to pay off, and make sure you’re holding enough cities hostage to cover your monthly payments. Otherwise, you’ll face an equally terrifying foe: compound interest charges. Between this and the annual upkeep for saltwater tanks, you may find a snake pit’s more economical. Do the deep work and be honest about the kind of supervillain you want to be.

And remember, with death traps, it’s a vibe.