Obviously, if you look even vaguely Oriental, you’re a black-belt in martial arts. This goes without saying – everyone knows that all oriental people are karate masters. If you and a few of your pajama-clad colleagues manage to corner the hero, don’t attack him all at once, go one at a time so he’s got plenty of opportunity to demonstrate how much better at fighting he is than you. Never use any kind of gun, go hand-to-hand whenever possible. If you do happen to have something exciting looking like nunchucks or a massive sword, wait for your colleagues to clear a path so the hero can give you a worried glance before you swing wildly at the space just above his head. Lose the weapon quickly and fall unconscious as soon as he lands a punch on you.
You should also use any unusual traits you might have to set you apart from the rest of the henchmen. A physical handicap, for example, can be turned to your advantage. If you’ve lost a hand, don’t get a fully-functioning and much more useful prosthetic replacement, get a bloody big hook instead. If you’re missing an eye, consider an eye-patch or a weirdly coloured glass-eye at the very least. Be inventive.
When you’re around your boss, the Big Villain, just keep quiet and look hard. Don’t concern yourself with your boss’s motives or mental health and never ask questions. Stay silent whenever possible. If you must ask a question make sure it’s when you’re standing near the boss’s new Heath Robinson style killing device so that he can test it on you to demonstrate how ruthless and psychotic he is.
If you’re given a gun to use, don’t clean it. This will ensure that it blocks at an opportune moment. Don’t check how much ammunition you’ve used either. If you wear glasses take them off – you need to be as poor a marksman as possible. When firing a machine gun, aim to produce a neat line of bullets at the feet of the hero rather than peppering his torso with holes.
If there’s a lake full of crocodiles or a handy snake pit, always loiter nearby. This will enable the hero to casually punch you into it as he runs past. If you’re still alive when the gunfight eventually starts, try to stand on something that’s high up. That way, you can plunge to your death after getting shot. Always flap your arms and scream when plunging.
Never look upwards in factories or dockyards in case you should notice that there’s something heavy dangling above your head. If you manage to get the hero exactly where you want him, keep your eyes on him at all times so that when his accomplice clubs you in the back of the head with the butt of a rifle, it comes as a complete surprise.
Above all, remember why you’re there. Nobody’s interested in your home life or your relationship with your father – leave all that emotional baggage back at the secret lair. Your role is to make the hero look good so know your place. That place is in a burnt out car or sprawled in the dust or floating in space or inside a crocodile. Wherever it happens to be, you can guarantee that you won’t be alive to watch the hero walk off with the girl at the end of the film.
Unless, of course, there’s a sequel.