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Mook Lieutenant

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"If my trusted lieutenant tells me my Legion of Terror is losing a battle, I will believe him. After all, he's my trusted lieutenant."
Evil Overlord List, Rule #37

It's not very leader-like to give orders yourself when you're trying to rule the world. Whilst you leave the hunting of the MacGuffin to your champion and the creation of the world-ending device to your Mad Scientist, who's leading your legions of terror? That's where the Mook Lieutenant comes in.

The Mook Lieutenant is the commanding officer of the evil army. He will be seen in the background to give orders, ask boneheaded questions about the weather-controlling device and give the Big Bad someone to talk to when The Dragon is a person of few words. Very rarely in For the Evulz, he's normally a career military man who views the heroes as rabble and does not question orders. Has a high mortality rate where failure is concerned. More often than not he will look exactly like any other Mook, except that whilst all the other Mooks are wearing masks, the Mook lieutenant will usually opt not to wear one, or he will wear an Ace Custom version just to let everyone know of his importance.


"Lieutenant" here refers to the position of right hand man in general, rather than a specific rank. That said, on the Sliding Scale of Villain Threat he'll tend to be above the rank and file, but can be anywhere from weaker than, on par with, or even stronger than the Elite Mooks.

Compare Mook Commander for the gameplay equivalent of this: Someone who gives benefits for the mooks in the battlefield while also participating on the field himself. See also Middle-Management Mook.



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    Anime & Manga 
  • Digimon Adventure: When Myotismon's enters the physical world and invades Tokyo, his forces include a large horde of Bakemon — Bedsheet Ghost Digimon — led by a single stronger Phantomon, a more visually complex specter and Bakemon's default evolution in the games.
  • In Fullmetal Alchemist: General Clemin is the one organizing the central troop's defense against the East and North armies in the Final Battle.
  • Pokémon: In the anime, the Unova region's Team Plasma has Aldith, who all of the Plasma grunts defer to and who is the apparent second-in-command to Colress. Her uniform is identical to that of a regular grunt, however she's different in that she's the only female grunt and it's clear that the others are taking orders from her.
  • Wolf's Rain has the nameless Commander of Lord Orkham's troops that pursued the wolves for a while. He was easy to identify because he had a radically different ensemble.

    Fan Works 

    Film — Animation 
  • Starchaser: The Legend of Orin: Zygon has one who runs his control room. When the Robot War begins going against them, he attempts to advise his leader that they should leave. Zygon responds by angrily ordering him to return to his post, whereupon he promptly runs out when Zygon isn't looking.

    Film — Live-Action 
  • Battal Gazi: The second film's Big Bad, Lord Igor Yanos, had his own cadre of lieutenants, eight of his best officers whom are frequently seen leading his lesser mooks. They have names and slight characterizations, and actually puts up quite a fight against Battal Gazi before getting defeated.
  • Cutthroat Island: The British forces in Jamaica are led by Lieutenant Trotter throughout the film.
  • The Dark Knight Rises: Bane has a lieutenant named Barsad.
  • Hornets' Nest: The otherwise totally anonymous soldier Schwalberg. Often seen at his superior Captain von Hecht's side or leading squads of Nazi Mooks, he's one of the more effective examples of this trope.
  • The Indiana Jones films have a couple of examples:
    • Major Gobler in Raiders of the Lost Ark, to Colonel Dietrich. He carries out a variety of menial duties and later shows some hands-on initiative by driving the escort car during the truck chase himself, rather than being chauffeured like Dietrich and Belloq. There's also a German soldier credited as "Tough Sergeant" who commands the soldiers onboard the truck transporting the Ark; he gets closest to killing Indy out of all the bad guys.
    • The chief Thuggee guard in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. He's seen ordering all of the other guards around and personally whipping slave children, and personally fistfights Indy.
  • James Bond:
    • Morzeny in From Russia with Love is in charge of training the SPECTRE mooks. Later in the film, he commands a squadron of boats sent after Bond.
    • Goldfinger. Kisch, who commands the army of mooks during the invasion of Fort Knox and performs minor minion roles before that alongside gassing the mob bosses who assisted Goldfinger.
    • Tomorrow Never Dies has Captain Scott. Big Bad Elliot Carver spends the film around the world, but has as his base of operations a Stealth Boat in the South China Sea. Scott runs the boat on Carver's behalf, and is responsible for delegating orders when missions are run directly from the boat. He's casually gunned down with the rest of the control room during Bond's attack on the boat, however.
  • Harry Potter: Some Death Eaters are shown giving orders to others in the films, usually with cooperation.
  • In Jurassic World, the InGen mercenaries summoned by Vic Hoskins are led by an unnamed fellow the credits simply call "InGen Contractor".
  • The Lord of the Rings:
    • With Sauron in offscreensville for most of the trilogy, the Witch-King of Angmar relies on Gothmog, Lieutenant of Minas Morgul, to lead his army at the battle of Pelennor Fields.
    • Earlier, Saruman uses Lurtz and Uglúk to lead his army of Uruk Hai.
  • Master of the World: In the film version, Vincent Price's Robur has Turner. He's distinguishable from the rest of the Albatross' crew by his jacket (the other crewmen only wear shirts) and the fact he carries a futuristic flintlock pistol.
  • Pirates of the Caribbean:
  • Marco Polo: The movie lacks a villain, but the Mongol army does have three elite officers named Abulahua, Caldalu and Dulidan, who leads the Mongol soldiers in the final battle.
  • The Return of Swamp Thing: Gunn fills this role, doing double time as The Brute for Dr. Arcane. His assistant Ms. Poinsettia in turn leads the female mooks.
  • Sin City gives us a nameless leader in charge of the squad of cops who try to kill Marv and his parole officer. He is the only one with lines and is identified by the large eagle tattoo over his face.
  • Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan: Joachim is this for Khan, and Khan, in true villain fashion, continually ignores his pleas to just leave Kirk alone and head off with the ship they stole.
  • Star Wars:
    • The original trilogy has many lieutenants for Darth Vader, from Captain Needa and General Veers to Admiral Piett and Admiral Ozzel. Most are killed by Vader himself. Piett is the one guy that remains throughout, even into the Grand Finale, so he qualifies the most as Vader's lieutenant.
    • Grand Moff Tarkin in A New Hope has his bickering officers Motti and Tagge, along with his personal Adjutant, Chief Bast.
    • OOM-9 served as commander of the Droid Army in The Phantom Menace, receiving orders directly from Viceroy Gunray and personally leading the battle against the Gungans.
    • All Clone (and later, Stormtrooper) Commanders serve Palpatine after Order 66 is executed in Revenge of the Sith.
      • Commander Cody leads the 212th and immediately turns on Obi-Wan when Order 66 is given.
      • Commander Appo leads the 501st Legion, following Anakin Skywalker directly, and it is he who prevents Bail Organa from entering the Jedi Temple during the sacking.
    • In The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi, there's Captain Phasma, notable for being six foot three and clad in chrome Stormtrooper armor. She's also the commander of the First Order Stormtrooper Corps.
  • Super Mario Bros.: Sergeant Simon in The Movie. First appears as just a booking officer at the police station, but later serves more proper Mook Lieutenant functions like being Koopa's flamethrower-toting bodyguard and reminding him that humans evolved from apes, not mice.
  • The Three Musketeers (1973): Jussac is an officer in the Cardinal's guard and attempts to arrest the musketeers at the convent.
  • In X2: X-Men United, Staff Sergeant Lyman leads the special forces detachment on behalf of Colonel William Stryker who is clearly more focused on the capture and experimenting on mutants.

  • Animorphs: Principal Chapman is a Starter Villain and the first named Human Controller encountered. Despite an ostensibly inglorious assignment as the assistant principal of a middle school, Chapman becomes a fairly recurring number two. This threatens the suspension of disbelief in The Deception, when Chapman is being passed off as a Navy admiral.
  • A Series of Unfortunate Events: Although he's the Big Bad, Count Olaf is implied to hold this role for the bad side of VFD.
  • The Three Musketeers: Jussac is an officer in the Cardinal's guard and attempts to arrest the musketeers at the convent.
  • In The Wheel of Time, the Myrddraal are part Mook Lieutenant, part Elite Mooks. Though much more physically powerful and intelligent than their Trolloc cousins, you'll generally find them commanding Trollocs (in general, you get one Myrddraal and a hundred Trollocs, a grouping which is called a "Fist") rather than fighting by themselves. Myrddraal in turn take their orders from the Forsaken, who work directly for the Dark One. Somewhat unusually for this trope, the two look nothing alike- Trollocs are hulking beast men, while Myrddraal look like palllid humans with smooth skin where eyes should be who generally wear Black Cloaks

    Live-Action TV 
  • Daredevil (2015): James Wesley is the right-hand of Wilson Fisk and also is the one who gives orders to Fisk's underlings. He's always careful to remind them that he's not the one actually in charge of his organization.
  • Doctor Who: In "The Sontaran Stratagem"/"The Poison Sky", General Staal has his army on the ground led by Commander Skorr. Who promptly removes his helmet when he arrives.
  • Farscape: Scorpius, when on his peacekeeping command vessel, discusses and gives orders to Captain Miklo Braca to give to the rest of his armada.
  • Game of Thrones:
    • The Master Torturer is seemingly in charge of the Dreadfort, or at least holding a position of authority there.
    • Lorch certainly has authority over the other Lannister men, as he leads the group of Lannister soldiers that attack the party of Night's Watch recruits headed by Yoren.
    • Reinforced with Gregor Clegane in Season 2, where he drops his trademark black armor and black & yellow colors for the usual red Lannister soldier garb.
    • Qhono effectively becomes a heroic version of the trope, being the apparent leader of the Dothraki sworn to Daenerys.
    • Despite named a General, the Baratheon General during the last stages of the march to Winterfell serves as this to Stannis in Davos's absence.
  • Luke Cage (2016): In season 2, Shades insists that Mariah view him as an equal business partner, yet a lot of the time she seems to think he's one of these.
  • Power Rangers S.P.D.: There are special, speaking blue Mecha-Mooks who command the standard silver ones. In Power Rangers Mystic Force, there are a few isolated incidences of lone Styxoids (talking, staff-wielding Zombie Mooks) leading Hidiacs (babbling, hatchet-wielding standard Zombie Mooks, though their acid-spitting power was a force to be reckoned with for about one episode.) but mostly those were a separate squad of Elite Mooks.
  • Revolution: Any named militia officer other than Monroe or Neville (i.e. Captain Jeremy Baker, appearing in the episodes "No Quarter", "Nobody's Fault But Mine", "Home", "The Longest Day"). Sergeant Will Strausser is more of an Elite Mook in that he's the lowest-ranking member of the Monroe Militia to merit a name so far, yet has highly-specialized skills that Bass relies upon to get certain dirty jobs done.
  • Supernatural:
    • Castiel seems to have this role among the angels in seasons 4 and 5.
    • Likewise Meg seemed to be this to the demons. Oftentimes if there is a group of low level demons, there will be one who acts as their leader and speaks to the Winchesters.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Warhammer 40,000: The Brute squads from the 4th Edition version of the Warhammer 40,000: Kill Team rules are led by a Boss, a sergeant-level character who replaces one of the rank-and-file Brutes. Bosses were intended to add to the narrative elements of a Kill-team game, becoming the target of assassination missions for instance, as well as adding to the difficulty of the game for the Kill-team player.

    Video Games 
  • In Command & Conquer: Tiberium Wars Nod Militas have an upgrade which adds a Confessor in their unit which increases their combat abilities. The Black Hand sub-faction has Confessor sqauds in place of Militias.
  • Deus Ex: Human Revolution: Narhari Kahn, a recurring note  field commander for the Belltower PMC in Hengsha. He personally executes Malik if you can't save her from the ambush.
  • Fallout
    • The first game has Harry, the Lieutenant's bumbling field officer and the leader of the Unity Super Mutant squad at Necropolis. For bonus points, he's one of the few characters in the game with full voice acting despite being so minor.
    • Sergeant Dornan in the second game is a similar story for the Enclave, except he replaces the stupidity with screaming.
    • There are generic officer NPCs among the Enclave soldiers in Fallout 3, as well as commanders dubbed "Masters" among the Vault 87 Super Mutants, though no interaction is possible with them other than combat. Ditto Legion Centurions in Fallout: New Vegas.
    • In Fallout: New Vegas, several Legion characters of various ranks are named and can be talked to, often acting as quest givers for Villain Protagonist players.
  • Fire Emblem: A common occurrence; bosses are named even for smaller skirmishes and thus present plenty of lieutenants for the Big Bad or The Dragon to explain his plan to, as well as for them to stand in as a minor component of that plan that the team of heroes can foil to turn the momentum around.
  • Halo:
    • Unnamed but high-level Covenant commanders such as Elite Generals and Brute Chieftains can occasionally be encountered (and killed) directing their forces, distinguished by their ornate armor.
    • Halo 4 has Parg Vol, one of Jul 'Mdama's commanders in Spartan Ops.
    • In Halo Wars 2, the Banished leader Atriox has quite a few of these:
  • Mass Effect:
    • In Mass Effect, you encountered the unnamed NPC "Krogan Commander" on Feros who is the the leader of Saren's krogan and geth forces there. He can certainly be a Boss in Mook's Clothing, too, especially on higher difficulties.
    • Mass Effect 2:
      • The game has a rather odd version of this in the form of The Collector General, who was at first thought to be the Big Bad. Like Saren before him, it was shown that the General was actually being controlled by the Reaper Harbinger the whole time. However, the General didn't command the mooks personally; rather, he acted as a conduit and mouthpiece for Harbinger to do the commanding, including possessing Collector infantry and turning them into People Puppets. True to the spirit of this trope, Harbinger ends up leaving the General to die in the exploding Collector Base after the General failed him.
      • It also had a more traditional use of this trope; most of the Blue Suns and Eclipse mercenary groups you encounter fight you in waves, and large waves will usually contain an officer (a Legionnaire or Centurion for Blue Suns, usually an Engineer or Vanguard for Eclipse) who directs the other troopers and affects their tactics. Also used by the Blood Pack, in the form of krogan leading teams of vorcha.
  • Skies of Arcadia: Used comically with Admiral Alfonso's second in command always being blamed for his failure (yet never actually getting blamed by the Big Bad) and Admiral De Loco's constantly being the Only Sane Man and withdrawing after you defeat them in battle.
  • Splinter Cell: President Kombayn Nikoladze never sends a single tactical order to his mooks. The entire military branch of his operation is commanded by the mercenary Grinko.
  • Warcraft:
    • Mal'Ganis from [WarCraft III.
    • Morbent Fell and Rass for Balnazzar.
    • The Blademasters for Magtheridon.
    • Rage Winterchill for Archimonde.
    • Captain Thornby for Admiral Proudmoore.
    • The Naga sea witches and royal guards for Illidan.
    • The Captain for Arthas, and later necromancers when he becomes a death knight.

     Web Animation 
  • RWBY has the Lieutenant of White Fang, who can often be seen near their high ranking members and is once seen helping host a rally for the organization, despite being dressed in the standard White Fang uniform. He also doubles as a Giant Mook and is one of the few members that can handle a named character on his own.

    Web Comics 
  • Homestuck: Crowbar serves as this for the Felt; even though its actual leader is Lord English and his second-in-command is Doc Scratch, the first barely ever interacts with them and Scratch only does so on occasion, leaving Crowbar to handle most of the day-to-day organization, planning and leading of the Felt's goons and assets. He takes a similar role when Jack takes over, serving him as a direct second-in-command.
  • In The Order of the Stick, Jirix is the hobgoblin that Redcloak trusts as his lieutenant, and he becomes Prime Minister of their new country when Redcloak departs with Xykon.

    Western Animation 
  • ReBoot: Megabyte uses Hack and Slash to chase down Bob most of the time, and Herr Dockter for his evil creations. Lieutenant Chauncy is in command of his Army of infected Bionomes. He differs in looks from the other infected Biomes by the wearing of an Officer's cap.
  • She-Ra and the Princesses of Power: Grizzlor for the Evil Horde.
  • Star Wars: The Clone Wars: For some good guy examples, Anakin has Captain Rex and Obi-Wan has Commander Cody. There are also other, less frequently seen clone officers assigned to other Jedi, such as Commander Wolffe for Plo Koon. The T-series tactical droids serve this purpose for the Separatists.
  • Star Wars Rebels:
    • ISB Agent Kallus was explicitly described by the showrunners as representing the mid-level Imperial officers who run the Empire on a day-to-day basis.
    • There's also Lieutenant Lyste, who's in charge of a lot of the normal activities of the Imperial military on the planet Lothal.
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1987): General Traag, commander of Krang's Rock Soldiers.
  • Transformers:
  • The Venture Bros.: Between Seasons 3 and 4, Henchman 21 becomes this for The Monarch's army of minions, inspired by his grief after 24's senseless death. He buys top-of-the-line equipment for himself, undergoes a grueling training regimen, and injects much-needed discipline into the henchmen's ranks. It would have worked out great for The Monarch, had he been a bit less incompetent.
  • Commander Peepers from Wander over Yonder is this and The Dragon to Lord Hater. While he belongs to the same alien species as the rest of Hater's Adorable Evil Minions, he's more clever and competent than all of them and Hater put together.


Video Example(s):


Commander Shroob

The Commander Shroob leads the Shroob army, assembling them in formations. His attacks include tossing his Shroob lackeys and a faster, stronger version of the typical ray gun attack.

How well does it match the trope?

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Example of:

Main / MookLieutenant

Media sources:

Main / MookLieutenant