In honor of the start of our Character series this week at Write On, I was going to talk about heroes I love. But then I decided that I would much prefer to talk about villains I love instead. Muah-ha-ha!
Villains can be incredibly dynamic and magnetic, even if we know they're batting for the wrong team. But villain backstories are often deep and emotional and compelling. So, let's look at five of my favorite villains!
1. Magneto - Erik Lehnsherr is one of those characters doing bad things for an almost noble reason. In an attempt to keep the events of past from repeating themselves (namely, The Holocaust), Magneto spends most of the X-Men comics and movies trying to thwart the mass genocide of mutants. This is a noble pursuit handled incorrectly. But we can't help but love him anyway.
2. Kylo Ren - Look, I know this one is a bit controversial because there are some people out there who really didn't take well to Kylo's redemption arc, and that's fair. But I've been drawn to Kylo's confused anger since The Force Awakens and was happy to see a redemption in a supremely epic fashion.
3. Annabelle - I never said this had to make sense, okay? But I love horror movies, and I especially love the Conjuring franchise, and Annabelle is one horror villain that I will pay good money to see terrorize people...What does this say about me?
4. The Joker - Come on, who doesn't love the Joker just a little bit? Whether played by Jack Nicholson, Heath Ledger, or Jared Leto, The Joker has captivated audiences for decades, hence why they keep writing stories about him!
5. Grima Wormtongue - I don't think I ever noticed before writing his name just now how icky Grima's name is. Anyway, I know Gollum is usually the beloved villain of the Lord of the Rings fandom, but I've always been partial to Wormtongue, a man controlled and manipulated and so close to redemption, yet still unable to ever really reach it.
It's easy to make villains so terrible the reader (or viewer) can't wait to see them get annihilated by the hero, but sometimes it's fun to see the villains that are just dynamic enough, just pitiful enough, that maybe you love them a little bit too, in your heart of hearts.
What fictional villains do you secretly love?