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The 10 Best Returning Villains in Film

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Tuesday, Dec 10, 2013

5 - 1

#5 - Captain Hook (Peter Pan)

His physical situation makes this an easy entry. As the arch-nemesis of one Peter Pan, Captain Hook has a massive score to settle. It was the spritely boy who never wants to grow up that lopped off the villain’s hand, feeding it to a crocodile that now waits, not quite so calmly, to get the rest of his tasty pirate snack. So naturally, Hook is ever after the Pan, seeking revenge and hoping to end the aquatic reptile’s hold on his soul in the process. Throughout the years, it is this brash buccaneer and his inevitable returns that make for Neverland’s arch mythos.

#4 - Turbo (Wreck-It Ralph)

For a long time, this determined driver had the number one arcade game in his small town storefront. Then, as with most fads, he faded away. Determined to retake his place at the top, he transforms into King Candy, sabotaging the world of Sugar Rush and its true ruler, Vanellope von Schweetz. Thanks to the ham-fisted help of Ralph, we learn of Turbo’s “track” record, his desire for power, and the reason behind his secret identity. We also learn that, sometimes, a little glitch in the system, while bothersome, can turn out to be a true hero in disguise.

#3 - Loki (Thor and Avengers Series)

Here’s one of the rare bad guys who we don’t mind seeing return time and time again. First, he messed with his brother Thor and his adopted father Odin as we learned about their backstory. Then, he worked with some interstellar baddies to bring space wrath down on all the Avengers. Back with his “family” on Asgard, he again proved to be both a viable villain and a semi-trustworthy ally. And all the while, he cracks jokes and makes comments that are equally snide and sincere. Add in the brilliance of the actor (Tom Hiddleston) playing the pariah and you’ve got some terrific terrorizing.

#2 - Cruella de Vil (101 Dalmatians)

At first, she seems like a wacked out old lady with a really odd fashion sense. Then we learn that this legitimately evil gal wants to capture a group of adorable puppies and - wait, make sure all the children are out of the room - turn them into a coat. WHAT!?! Be it animated or live action, this crazed Queen of couture will stop at nothing to see her runway dreams realized. After a stay in an insane asylum, she’s cured, right? Well… In fact, more films would be better served if their villain made their way from reality to the booby hatch and back again. Cruella illustrates why.

#1 - Darth Vader (Star Wars Trilogy)

Remember when you saw Star Wars for the first time? Remember how you felt when you saw Han Solo fly in and send a certain black helmeted villain’s ship sailing off into the galaxy. Without an explosion, without a final beat declaring him either dead or doomed, you just knew a certain dark Sith lord would be back, and sure enough, Vader struck again via the Empire while dropping a bloodline bombshell on our hero Luke Skywalker. Oddly, some solid paternal instincts take over during the Jedi’s revenge/return, leading us to believe that his broken heart (damn you awful prequels) could overcome an evil Emperor’s desire to destroy his enemies.

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