The Council of Elders is the government of the Village of Fowl Devotees. It includes twenty-five village elders (the youngest of which is aged around 81) who enforce the rules of the Village and take actions on the part of the citizens.
The Council of Elders was created long before The Vile Village, though its exact time of formation in the village's history is not confirmed. There is speculation that the Council was formed after the village transitioned from a research community to a residential one to manage its rules.
The Vile Village
When the Baudelaire children first encounter the Council of Elders, it has twenty-five members, all of whom wear black hats adorned with lifelike fake crows. Their duties include enforcing all of the Village of Fowl Devotees' rules, (of which there are nearly 20,000 confirmed) and discussing and creating new ones. The Council also presides over meetings at Town Hall.
In The Vile Village, the Council accuses the Baudelaires of the murder of Jacques Snicket (in violation of rule number 201, "no murdering") and condemns them to burning at the stake (in accordance with rule 2). When Esmé Squalor, disguised as Officer Luciana, accidentally kills a crow with a harpoon gun (in violation of rule 1, "no harming crows"), the Village turns on her and Count Olaf (disguised as Detective Dupin).
In the TV series, there are only three Elders depicted, as opposed to twenty-five mentioned in the book. They are:
- Elder Anabelle - portrayed by Mindy Sterling
- Elder Jemma - portrayed by Carol Mansell
- Elder Sam - portrayed by Ken Jenkins
- The Council of Elders may be perceived as a response to the social command to "respect your elders". It also mocks unconditionally following meaningless and hyper-controlling legislature and governments.
- The Vile Village
- A Series of Unfortunate Events (TV series)