Sometimes it’s good to be bad. Honestly, where would our heroes be without their nefarious counterparts. this week’s Top Five Wednesday celebrates all those villains that make my little black heart go pitter-patter.
#1 Napoleon (Animal Farm by George Orwell)
To this day there are few characters that have left such a bitter taste in my mouth as Napoleon the pig. I read Animal Farm when I was in the ninth grade, and it is one that has always stuck with me. For those of you who haven’t snapped this one up yet, the plot revolves around a farm whose animals wish to rule themselves. Napoleon eventually rises to power on the premise that he is intellectually superior to the other animals, and will do a better job of governing. Sadly, his rule is nothing but cruel and self-serving. I will never forget how hard wept when the weight of his actions against Boxer hit me, and I can honestly say that when I am confronted with selfishness in life, Napoleon almost always comes to mind.
#2 The Dark Phoenix (Uncanny X-Men: Dark Phoenix Saga by Chris Claremont, et al.)
When Jean Grey is exposed to a solar flare / radiation, she becomes the Phoenix, who is a being of almost infinite power. She can fly, bend minds to her will, and even destroy entire planets with a just a click of her knee-high boots. Seems great, right? However, there’s a catch: The Phoenix is a being in and of itself. While the symbiotic relationship / new powers start out as a peaceful relationship between Jean and Phoenix, it soon becomes obvious that this force is hell-bent of destroying the entire universe. As the Phoenix’s dark desires become more obvious she transforms into the Dark Phoenix, who to this day is the toughest opponent (in my opinion at least) the X-Men have ever faced. Jean is the romantic glue that held both Wolverine and Cyclops together as allies. She was the star pupil of Professor Xavier, and an all-around badass. They’ve never gotten over her loss, either, and for that she has gained rock star villain status.
#3 Euless (Coach) Boss (Southern Bastards by Jason Aaron and Jason Latour)
I hate football, but I sure do love Southern Bastards, and it’s all thanks to Euless (Coach) Boss. He’s a big fish, in a tiny Alabama town that lives, breathes, and dies by football. This coach isn’t the same kind of guy that ran your football team back in high school. He’s a mean bastard that the whole town loves and hates synonymously. He’s also not above drug running or murder if it wins him the state championship, and Coach always wins. Roll. Tide.
#4 The Joker (Batman)
If you know anything about me, it’s that I am a huge fan of Batman, and you can’t love Batman without the Joker. What makes him an exceptional villain is his unwavering dedication to being Batman’s worst nightmare. Homeboy even cut off his own face just to prove it. There’s also a sweeter side to Joker. In his own horribly misguided way he actually idolizes Batman. He wants to bring out the very best in him… by being a homicidal maniac. It’s endearing, really.
#5 Negan (The Walking Dead by Robert Kirkman)
Finally, there is Negan. Wonderful, horrible, Glen-crushing, soul shattering… Negan. I know I should hate him, but damn it, this guy is a charmer in the most sadistic way. Glen’s death was one of the worst things I have ever seen in a comic. I screamed and cried simultaneously, but even after I still grew to love him. He’s so good at being bad, that eventually he wins you over. Even more alluring is his own personal code. You see, even though Negan is quick to crush a skull, he isn’t completely unhinged and still has some sense of honor. I loved his first story arch in The Walking Dead, and I’m twice as excited about this current plot, so if loving Negan is wrong, then I just don’t want to be right.
So there you have it, my top five favorite villains. Please feel free to share your favorites in the comments, because I’m always looking for something new!
Thanks for reading, and as always and before I go, let me take a second to give a shout out to Lainey (Gingerreadslainey on Youtube), for creating Top 5 Wednesdays (T5W) where bloggers far and wide tackle top fives. If you want to learn more or join this jazzy group of bloggers, click here.