Criteria: The top 100 Villains rankings of the Horror, Thriller, Mystery, & Suspense genres–Film, Literature, Mythology, Folklore, Urban Legend. The list was contrived based on the villain’s personality, characteristics, cultural impact, turpitude, originality, performance, and other various subjective factors.
Slimer (Ghostbusters series) – The odious spook with a gluttonous appetite, Slimer became the first ghost captured by the Ghostbusters crew. Although classified as a ‘non-terminal repeating phantasm’, the amorphous green phantom is a constant pest with a propensity to ravage. In the subsequent film and cartoon series, Slimer became more of an innocuous, clumsy, comical mascot for the franchise, leading to an array of merchandising throughout the ’80s and mid-’90s—Toys, Video Games, Hi-C, and other items.
Brenda Bates (Urban Legend) – Driven by rage and retribution, Brenda went on a brutal killing spree at Pendleton college. Following the death of her fiance by way of an urban legend prank, Brenda wriggles her way into the life of Natalie, the culprit in the death, slaying off all her friends in the form of urban legends before revealing herself as the killer in the shocking finale. Like most urban legends, Brenda is indestructible, mysterious, and relentless. On top of that, she was clearly mentally disturbed before the accident and the tragedy only triggered this violent outburst.
The Elders (The Village) – In the 2004 M. Night Shaymalan thriller, the village folk instilled a fear into their naive kin, warning them of the ferocious creatures that inhabited their woods. To achieve their rustic utopia, they created their own mythology and dogma to abide by, protecting them from the dangers of society. In actuality, they lied to their kids and prevented them from having free will, free speech, free opportunity.
Grandpa (TCM series) – Equally important as any TCM villain, the history of Grandpa Sawyer is full of tall tales involving his lust for blood, which is the sustenance that keeps him alive at decrepit age of 137. Grandpa’s skills at the slaughterhouse were usurped by technology, leaving his kin impoverished. It’s been said that he’d been a murderer since before the silent film era.
Kids (Bloody Birthday) – On June 9, 1970, in the opening scene, it’s eerily explained that a trio of babies were born coinciding with a rare solar eclipse, thus imparting a sinister, psychotic nature to their temperament by way of astrological forces. Ten years later, their innocent mischief turns to fatal games. They may be devoid of empathy, but they certainly weren’t short on imagination when it came to murder. Notably, they even attempt to poison the birthday cake–as in THEIR birthday cake.
Lord Summerisle (The Wicker Man) – Christopher Lee, god bless his sordid soul, tallied a burden of villainous roles over his nearly 70 year acting career. Most notably, the role of Lord Summerisle has been revered by horror fanatics as being a memorable villain. The wacky cult leader adheres to the ancient doctrine of Celtic paganism, emceeing the burning of the wicker man in the grand climax of the film.
Jennifer Check (Jennifer’s Body) – Warning to lusters, let the eyes envy and the body stay moored. Writer Diablo Cody’s follow-up to the hit drama Juno was a much maligned horror film in 2009—Jennifer’s Body. Megan Fox, in her prime, was cast as Jennifer, the most desirable babe in school. After tagging along with a fame-starved indie rock band, Jennifer unwittingly becomes the offering in a diabolical sacrament. In effect, she transforms into a blood-craving demon chick, devouring up the libidinous boys at her school with her irresistible body.
Billy Chapman (Silent Night Deadly Night) – Having witnessed the egregious murder of his parents at an early age at the hands of a criminal in a santa costume, Billy grew up confused and timid in an orphanage run by strict nuns. Also, his grandfather was a complete lunatic. After years of suppressing his emotions, the christmas season elicits a psychotic episode. Dressed in a santa suit and armed with an axe, he sets out on a bloody rampage during what’s suppose to be the most peaceful time of year.
The Blob (The Blob) – In the depths of space, there dwells a gelatinous organism, with a gluttony for humans, catching a ride into our realm by way of meteorite. It has the maneuverability of a tooth paste tube mixed with a rain tarp. And the appetite of a Nose guard. Regardless of what you attack it with, the only weakness the blob has is coldness. After being outwitted by a ’50s teenager, the blob is then promptly jettisoned in the Arctic by the Air Force. Of all the jumbo ’50s monster movies, the blob is one of the few that gets widespread respect.
Lucio Fulci’s Zombies (Lucio Fulci Films) – Admittedly, I’m not a much of a zombie fanatic, which is why not many make this list. I prefer shrewd, scheming villains over mindless flesh-munchers. However, legendary Italian director Lucio Fulci gave us some of the goriest zombies in horror. His finest being from ‘City of the Living Dead’, where ancient evil is evoked to walk the earth as moldering undead corpses.