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Actor Christoph Waltz

Do you have a favorite villain? You’ve got company. Someone recently asked, “Who is the best villain of all time? They can be from film, television, a book, or a video game.” Here are the top-voted villains.

1. Gus Fring

“Gus Fring from Breaking Bad. He is very calm, professional, intelligent, and brutal when angry,” someone stated. Several others agreed he was a scary villain, and Giancarlo Esposito nailed the part. 

2. The Joker

“The Joker, hands down,” replied one. Another wondered, “I don’t know if you’d say this without Heath Ledger’s portrayal of him.” A third added, “It’s such a good character that there are at least three excellent portrayals of him.”

“Mark Hamill has been the voice of the Joker in all Batman cartoons and video games since the 90s,” another argued. Then, finally, someone snickered, “I don’t know if you’d say that if you read The Killing JokeDark Knight Returns, or Arkham Asylum.”

3. Colonel Hans Landa

“Colonel Hans Landa (Christoph Waltz) from Inglourious Basterds,” someone suggested. “I like his character. Very charming and unforgiving. Christoph Waltz did a remarkable job playing this character.”

4. Ozymandias

Ozymandias (Adrian Veidt) from The Watchmen. Hands down. Cool, calm, and calculated—also the best page in the Alan Moore graphic novel,” someone alleged. “Agreed,” said another. “After I went back to read it the second time, I paid attention to his mannerisms and the weight on his shoulders as he was secretly trying to save the world.”

5. Azula

“Azula from Avatar: The Last Airbender. She’s the most infuriating, cunning, powerful B in the world, but at the same time, you almost feel sorry for her at some points,” someone suggested. “Azula is my favorite character. From anything. She’s just so vicious, and her bending is stunning.”

6. Doctor Doom

“Doctor Doom. He successfully took over the world, and it was better for it. And then he gave it up because he found ruling the world boring. He also once became a god and again gave up the power because being a god was beneath him,” someone shared. “Agreed. But Julian McMahon as Doctor Doom was a huge casting error that ruined the Fantastic Four films. 

7. Iago from Othello

Othello is one of my favorite tragedies. One of the things that are so painful is that everyone calls him “Honest Iago” and treats him like he’s fantastic, and then when you observe the play, the only people who see him be nasty are the audience and Rodrigo. And Emilia. Desdemona and Othello believe him to be a nice, helpful guy. Brilliant and masterful,” said one. 

8. Dolores Umbridge

Another voted, “Dolores Umbridge in Harry Potter because she honestly thinks she’s doing the right thing.” Someone added, “Especially in the audiobooks read by Stephen Fry. I don’t know who has the better rendition, him or Imelda Staunton.”

9. Scar

One person said, “Scar from The Lion King. No sitting around and explaining his plans. He just got on with it and killed his brother.” Another added, “They wrote a song about his plans, and the way the hyenas marched around in from of him was just like Hitler.”

10. Darth Vader

“Darth Vader, he’s a classic, and there’s no contest,” alleged one. Several agreed that Vader was the obvious answer. However, one argued, “Darth Sidious from Star Wars.”

“He became Supreme Chancellor of the Galactic Republic by manufacturing a crisis on his home planet. Then, he started The Clone Wars to militarize the Republic and gain unchecked emergency powers. Finally, he mentored and created Darth Vader.”

This article was inspired by this thread and does not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Cents + Purpose.

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Elizabeth Ervin

Elizabeth Ervin is the owner of Sober Healing, a website that provides information about addiction, recovery, mental wellness, spirituality, and resources to help people succeed in rebuilding their lives. Elizabeth has education and experience with addiction, healing, and spiritual studies. She is passionate about learning, teaching, and loving her neighbor. 

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