The Worst of the Best (Super-Villains)

supervillainsThis week I will be making a list of the 10 worst super-villains, mostly because it seemed like a good idea at the time. I know there are like a million and a half other lists out there (I know this because I looked up about 60% of them before my brain threatened to melt) but, I decided to make my own. I’ve set up this list based on a few criteria:

1) I’m going to pick from well-known super-villains not crazy obscure ones;

2) Worthlessness with be graded on the scope of the villainy and how ineffectual the actually villain is, and character concept.

So let’s get cracking! WARNING: THERE BE SPOILERS AHEAD

10. Scarecrow (Batman)

The Scarecrow makes it on this list because although he is one of the few villains able to bring Batman to his knees, his plans are very short-sighted. Mostly they involve making Gotham experience the same fear he did when he was bullied as a child. While he usually almost manages to achieve his goals, he usually doesn’t end up doing anything truly evil. This is unless of course he’s being manipulated by some other villain. He has benefited from good writing and a great core concept, but as a villain, he seems more like a fear junky than anything that could be considered super-villainy. Sure he wants to make an entire city fear him and bend to his will, but compared to the planet eating, reality warping evil of some other villains he just doesn’t seem that bad.

9. Catwoman (Batman)

Catwoman is in fact a great character with a great personality that stands the test of time. Her unpredictability and unwillingness to play by the rules makes her such a vivid character and one of the strongest female characters to come out of comics. One of the oldest and greatest opponents for Batman, she has decades of thievery and law breaking under her belt. Did I mention yet that she knows that Bruce Wayne is Batman? However, her flexibility and self-serving agendas seem to make her more of an anti-hero of late and less a villain. Some of the worst things that she’s done are basically just varying degrees of larceny. So this being the case she tends to fall short on the villainy list making her an ideal contestant for our worst of the best list.

I can't tell anyone who Batman is. Even though I knew.

http://images2.wikia.nocookie. net/__cb20090501191661/batman/images/6/60/Riddler_009.jpg

8. The Riddler

The Riddler is a super genius when it comes to, well, planning just about anything. Being obsessed with puzzles and mind-games it appears that The Riddler has started a life of crime for the fun of it. He is definitely a match for Batman’s skills in detection and deduction so he certainly has the potential to pull off amazing heists, murders, or any other villainy he dang well pleases. However, this potential is largely wasted because of his narcissistic need to have everyone acknowledge how great he is. He simply can’t just plan and execute a masterful plan; he has to create a Rube Goldberg of a scheme to pull off a job. Sometimes this includes tipping off the police or Batman to his next crime. Sometimes it seems he’s hell bent on sabotaging himself.

(Caveat: The Riddler DID orchestrate the masterful “Hush”, but he couldn’t tell anyone what he had learned because of his own psychological need to be superior. COME ON.)

7. Kraven the Hunter (Spider-Man)

This bad guy was a big game hunter who decided that  to prove he was the best he would hunt and capture Spider-Man. To top it off, he didn’t use guns or anything. No; he preferred to use his bare hands. Granted, he had some magic jungle juice that made him faster and stronger, an incredible knowledge of pressure points, and could create extremely potent poisons and tranquilizers to help him out. But Spider-man has superpowers so that just about makes it even right? So most people would probably think that this 70-year-old guy who was great at taking down lions and rhinos would have a hard time with a sentient super-being, but this guy actually manages to take down Spidey.

On top of that he goes to NY city and captures this guy called Vermin who Spidy needed help from Cpt. American to defeat. So Spider-man comes back from being buried by Kraven. Kraven buried him because he thought he was dead, but we all know superheroes don’t die (that often). Kraven tells Spidey that his hunting days are over. His logic was that he has proven himself to be the ultimate hunter and he can now retire in peace. This level of badassery surely disqualified him from the worst list, but the story gets better. You might have noticed my use of the past tense when talking about this hunter, and that’s because Kraven kills himself. Yup. He apparently has nothing to live for because being the ultimate hunter is worthless unless you kill yourself in the end. Instead of doing something useful he just up and kills himself. And I thought The Riddler was wasted talent.

6. Gorilla Grodd (The Flash)

This hyper-intelligent gorilla with psionic abilities was once the leader of the Secret Society of Super-Villains, making him potentially more villainous than all the other members of the society (because obviously that’s how super-villains choose their leaders). On top of that he is one of the few who were able to incapacitate Superman… well nearly incapacitate. Still this deserves some respect right? Ordinarily I would say yes, that’s pretty darn evil. Plus his many plans to take over the world are a pretty lofty goal, compared to petty theft.

However, most of his life is spent imprisoned in Gorilla City and although he seems to be able to break out at will, he always seems to end up foiled by the Flash. Grodd also has become more savage over the years. In one gruesome incident he ravages the African city of Kinshasa killing/eating many of the inhabitants. While this makes some great villainy, it seems that he’s just becoming increasingly desperate and erratic due to multiple failures. This seeming degradation of his psyche lands him on this list mostly because it seems he needs to regress to do anything more than intelligently curse the Flash for winning again.

5. M.O.D.O.K. (The Hulk)

Mental Organism Designed Only for Killing. Yup that is his name in full. So being a giant mutated brain in a hover chair sure is evil right? In M.O.D.O.K.’s case this might actually be right. He killed his masters at a cooperation named AIM and took control himself. He’s even fought everyone from Captain America to Iron Man to the Hulk, and even to Dr. Doom at one point. He even was part of a group that created the Red Hulk. So why is so high on this list of worst Super-Villains? Well he hasn’t accomplished much with his massive brain and even though creating the Red hulk is one of his crowning achievements, the Red Hulk is now with the Avengers. So in the long run M.O.D.O.K.’s evil created a new hero to fight against evil. Good thing he thought ahead.

4. The Cheetah (Wonder Woman)

So a half-cursed non-virgin furry who was driven to evil because she was jealous of someone I guess sounds like a legit villain. She hasn’t really done much until recently so I guess her decades of annoying Wonder Woman finally seemed like fruitless villainy. I mean all she wants is to kill Wonder Woman, and by kill I mean steal her shiny lasso. Bad kitty.

My greatest power is also my greatest weakness.

http://thedrunkenscholar.files.wordpress. com/2009/06/metallo_thumb.jpg

3. Metallo

So a kryptonite powered T-1000 with a human brain and the ability to absorb any mechanical or metal object and make it part of his exoskeleton sounds pretty evil. I mean his brain is that of a thief and murder, so he has to be seriously evil. So what does the mechanical menace do as his first evil plot? Get a job at the Daily Planet and attempt to bone Lois Lane. Yup, this guy is just a crazed psycho… but seriously he does decide somewhere along the line to kill Superman, because you just can’t win Lois’s heart without killing Supes. Metallo decided to use kryptonite to kill Superman, igneous I know, and makes a kryptonite trap for the Man of Steel. Too bad for him Superman escapes. Not because Superman does anything, but because Metallo put the wrong kind of metal into his power supply and killed himself. This allowed a certainly doomed Superman an opportunity to escape. That is spectacular evil right there. Not only did he fail, like most super-villain do eventually, but he managed to kill himself while doing it.

2. Omni-Man (Invincible)

This mustache toting superhero-turned-villain-turned superher is a member of an alien race called the Viltrumites. He apparently was sent to earth by the Viltrumite Empire to conquer it and to achieve this goal he arrives under the guise of helping the planet. He even has a wife and kid. When he reveals his true intentions to his son, Mark Grayson, the two end up coming to blows. When he can’t bring himself to kill his son, he basically has a melt down and takes refuge on another planet. However, because he’s failed on Earth the Viltrumite Empire captured him and decided he should be executed for his failure. (Pretty standard punishment for an evil society)

Fortunately, I guess, he is rescued by a former enemy Allen the Alien and decided to help him destroy the Viltrumite Empire. So all in all, this guy pulls a Goku and decides to fight against his evil race. And we all know Goku isn’t evil, like at all. So by being anything like him we can assume you’re not a villain. Omni-Man’s evil plan to take over the world, Russian sleeper agent style is foiled by the very fact he decided to take so damn long to do it. Enough time for him to grow a conscious and become a good guy. He does have a decent story, and makes for an interesting character, but as a super-villain he falls spectacularly short.

1. Herr Star (Preacher)

And there he is folks, the worst super-villain of the comic world (according to me). This villain is basically a joke. The writers made it a running gag that he would become more and more disfigured. He loses a leg after being attacked by not one but three hillbillies. Yup, just regular old country bumpkins. He has his right ear shot off. And the protagonist of the story Jesse cuts a penis-shaped gash into his forehead. Just in case that wasn’t enough, the writers make it so a Rottweiler bites of his junk. He does actually manage to kill Jesse, which by the criteria set before should make him a good super-villain, but sadly he is killed about 10 secs after his victory. And it turns out that Jesse wasn’t even dead from being shot in through the skull, so that’s just another pathetic loss for a joke of a villain.

There you have it folks my list for the top 10 worst of the best Super-Villains. Like all lists these rankings can be argued over and switched around, but for all intents and purposes these guys are really bad at being evil. Most of them are great characters and have a wonderful impact on their stories or at least keep them interesting, but they aren’t as evil as the other great Super-Villains or as successful. And I purposely chose from notable villains, because everyone knows that guys like Kite Man and Turner D. Century suck.

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