Allow me to explain myself. In this particular case, I think of a Take That-style character as a scenario wherein a story features a character that is meant to parody and criticize, if not outright demonize a real-life individual. One such example came from an era where several characters were made as (sometimes dark) parodies of George W. Bush, in order to criticize and/or mock the guy. One of the darker examples could be seen in Stephen King's Under the Dome, wherein the main villain, Selectman James "Big Jim" Rennie, pretty much served as a shot at both George W. Bush and Dick Cheney, blended together as easily one of the worst antagonists of his works. And then, you have comparatively more classic examples, such as Charlie Chaplin's Adenoid Hynkel of The Great Dictator, who exists as a colossal shot at Hitler. Other examples are present, I'm sure. Of course, this has gotten me to thinking. Are characters such as these workable?
I ask because I have two major concerns. One, is there a limit as to where it just becomes immature. Don't get me wrong, Hitler deserves the scorn, and, during its time, so did Bush. But as I got to thinking about this, I started to wonder that if it revealed how immature one person was for effectively caricaturing a real-life person they didn't like. After all, Michael Crichton did this in regards to one of his critics, portraying the man as a child rapist with a small penis in Next. And then, there's the numerous times when The Simpsons went for unfunny Captains Ersatz of famous people, like the George Lucas wannabe who resulted in an unfunny and embarrassing "The prequels sucked, and you should look at the originals" punchline. (Not to mention how it's confusing when Lucas and Star Wars are established as existing in that same universe). I've been in the same boat, considering antagonists in my horror story concepts who were based on various people I didn't like, from Sarah Palin to Seth MacFarlane to Uwe Boll. But ultimately, all they seemed to boil down to was "These people suck, read as something bad happens to them". And honestly, I felt like I was being petty at the end of the day. I've still considered the Uwe Boll Take That idea, but that leads to my other concern.
When you get past the question of immaturity, then you reach the question of "Is it relevant?" Going back to the George W. Bush example, these days, still going on about the guy sucks is pretty much seen as dated humor, at best. Trying to satirize Stephenie Meyer and bash Twilight has pretty much run its course, with any slams towards the franchise being passé these days. Were I to compose a story wherein a stand-in for a real-life person is being taken down a notch, would it hamper the story by ceasing to be relevant? It could go either way. Dante's Inferno features multiple residents of the layers of Hell who were effectively present to criticize and make potshots at the government. You wouldn't know any of them unless you were familiar enough with the history, or just read the footnotes. Although, alternatively, one could argue a kind of relevance from a historical context. But even then, I have doubts that a story caricaturing this generation's Ed Wood will hold up.