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 Joke, Dark 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. Lex Luthor
“I like that he’s just a normal human who can still face down Superman thanks to his intellect,” one user said of the villain from the original Superman.
Another user agreed but noted, “Yeah, but in all honesty, he would be dead in less than a second if Superman was suddenly okay with killing.”
5. Nurse Rached
One user mentioned the villainous nurse from the classic One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, “Her quiet, calm, oppressive, sadistic overlordship just made her a terrifying presence in every scene. The stark contrast of her dark tone with her white uniform was just a perfect blend.”
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. Hannibal Lecter
One user nominated the Silence of the Lambs villain, saying, “Gotta go with Hannibal Lecter. He’s a genius yet inhumanly strong. He can destroy you from within with his twisted psychology or disembowel you and eat you, depending on how he’s feeling that day.”
Another person added, “Sophisticated yet incredibly dark and twisted at the same time. And Anthony Hopkins portrays him perfectly.”
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.”
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.”
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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.