The Viper has actually done us a major service in removing the kind of people who would own a Viper from public society. When the car was announced they appeared unbidden at the gates of Dodge dealerships across the country, rubbing their blood-stained hands against the immaculate window glass until a salesman came outside and taught them how to use a door.

Wild-eyed, these men first attempted to pay for their factory hot rods with clusters of pulled hair and bloody teeth before pulling out inexplicable sums of money from their dragon-like hoard of cash, saturated with the tang of human blood to the point that it dripped crimson trails onto the manicured industrial-estate tile flooring. Innocent salesmen who went along with them for the test drive “for insurance purposes” returned shaken, mute, with white hair and permanently dilated pupils, unable to share their tale of the horrors that ensued on that fateful use of the dealer plate. Normal people would never attend the Dodge dealership to witness these vehicles, being perfectly happy to gaze at them from an aesthetic perspective before plopping down an outsize credit note on lifted minivan after lifted minivan, continuing on with their life and never descending into the kind of purestrain madness that would promote the purchase of a Viper.

Seemingly unemployed, these Viper owners wreaked havoc across the nation, dragging their RT/10s on our highways and byways before locating and docking with the nearest tree to the dealership. Those who survived their high-speed Viper crash were reborn in a baptism of fire, taking these broken men and giving us new, hardened, experienced psychopaths who immediately set out to purchase a second generation Viper when it became available. Despite the Dodge, for years America was helpless, crippled with fear of these dearborists, and our economy collapsed to the point that the Europeans were able to take advantage of our weakened world position, launching savage leveraged takeovers that crippled our most useless corporations, among them the mother of the Viper. The Dodge was struck down, and the Viper was to cease.

The Dodge, under the direction of the Germans, lost its love of terror and spectacle and discontinued the Viper as they instead concentrated on making more lifted minivans to attract the kind of man who would only appreciate the Viper as an abstract spectacle of wealth and power, rather than a direct-engagement three-pedaled suicide machine rendered from brimstone and lubricated with the souls of the damned. The loyalists were lost in the wild, hoarding the few remaining examples from being crashed into trees at high speeds and sequestering them away amongst yachts and period-correct lowboy restorations at a gathering known only as Barrett-Jackson.

Before long the original Viper owner hoard began to thin itself out, and the surviving cars began to depreciate. That’s when they came down from the mountain. Cheap-ass hobbyists. Clutching Weiand blowers and laughing in their odd high pitch, half-panicked, half-aroused as they eyed what was left of their fiberglass-bodied ankle-burning sex machine. The next age of Viper Terror was among us. The kind of man who would originally buy a new Viper became restless, and they swarmed across Wall Street, launching the world into an orgy of high-risk, violent bets that struck out at the common man. In order to sate their desire for adrenalin and property destruction, these men had gained power and cast the world into economic disaster that destroyed even The Dodge they once embraced.

After many more months of darkness, The Dodge returned. A man who had been to hell and back approached the podium. The Gilles told us of a new Viper - a new promise - and that America would soon be unified under an appreciation for the new Viper. Our nation’s psychos would be comfortably ensconced once again in a faux-luxury hot rod that had a predilection for snap oversteer and brutal triple-digit crashes that atomized the occupants of the car.

America was safe. This time we had learned not to fear the Viper, but to fund it with our governments.