It's a question, we're all probably wrestling with after watching the Season 7 premiere of The Walking Dead. We all hate Negan, that's probably not even debatable at this point. But the odd thing is that even though we hate him; there's probably a tiny piece inside us that love to hate him. He's just that type of antagonist - he's cruel and charming at the same time, and watching him dole out his own brand of violence is oddly entertaining, in a gladiatorial sort of way. There are probably a thousand questions that flew through the minds of everyone watching Negan destroy the people we've grown to love:
- Is he going to straight up murder everyone in Rick's group?
- Is he going to lead an attack against the Hilltop?
- Is he going to be the thorn in Rick's side until something more devastating than the events in the premiere happens?
- Is Negan the worst villain to ever make his way on screen?
And there it is, that's the million dollar question, because honestly Negan is twisted and wicked, and I'm not sure if anyone can compare, but let's take a look at 9 other on-screen antagonists that compare to the most hated man on the planet, Negan.
1. Joffrey Baratheon (Game of Thrones)
Let's see, how to explain Joffrey to someone who hasn't seen Game of Thrones. Imagine that spoiled, pious, entitled child you see in a store demanding that his every wish be fulfilled - take that child and exponentially increase the violent tendencies and you have Joffrey Baratheon.
Joffrey is the atrocious child-king, and product of his mother and uncle's incestuous relationship, who brought forth waves of torture, murder, assault, sexual demoralization and of course a high-profile beheading. Joffrey was a character that was genuinely hated for being a vile creature, barely worth hoping for a change of heart.
2. Gus Fring (Breaking Bad)
Gus is a character that helped to transition Breaking Bad from the established cult following into a mainstream phenomenon. Gus was brutal, plain and simple. Being both a major druglord and a legitimate businessman (at times) would be difficult for anyone but Gus to manage, considering how carefully designed his meth empire was.
His criminal genius was carried by his violent outbursts and his imposing presence. Gus seemed impossible to outwit, which made it all the better when Walter White managed to do just that.
3. Cersei Lannister (Game of Thrones)
Cersei is considered by some to be the devil incarnate as she is always pulling strings from just out of sight. Slowly trying to twist the people around her to make every situation to her benefit, Cersei bore three children to her twin brother, plotted to kill her husband the king and had Joffrey behead the man who learned the truth.
Cersei cares for nothing above herself, although she does protect her family - she would quickly turn them asunder if there was a chance she could be undermined.
4. Boyd Crowder (Justified)
There has never been a villain that I just felt more inexplicably drawn to than Boyd Crowder. When you consider that the writers of Justified had originally planned for a death shortly after making his appearance, it made Boyd all the more pivotal to the story.
Boyd has remained a constant antagonist to Raylan Givens even through the several fortune and moral reversals. Boyd is vindictive, violent and charmingly twisted with a splash of southern comfort.
5. Ben Linus (Lost)
Now, when you think of coldblooded characters, Ben may not be the first person you imagine. But honestly there is no other character who carries the vindictiveness, the manipulation or the self-preservation better than Ben Linus.
Throughout the mysteries of Lost, Ben proved that he was a villain seemingly without equal thanks to his morally ambiguous choices and repetitive attempts to murder, deceive and outwit everyone else on the island and off. Ben Linus carried a sort of perverted charisma about him, and seemed to show no sense of aversion to the horrendous acts he perpetuated.
6. Vic Mackey (The Shield)
It's funny how the main character of The Shield is a villain on this list, because normally you would imagine that the main character of a show would be the protagonist. Yet, Vic proves that just because you wear an officer's shield doesn't mean that you are immune to the corruption and thirst for power. Vic is part psychopath, part Machiavelli and believes that his actions are just because it gets the job done.
The sad part is that his actions only prove that he is depraved and has stepped willingly into a life of murder, corruption and adultery - which only strengthens his devilish direction.
7. Arthur Mitchell (Dexter)
As the most disturbing and oddly prolific antagonist, Arthur Mitchell proves that you can never judge a person simply by their appearance. Arthur Mitchell is initially seen as the 'family-man' in the series, but soon Dexter (our homicidal antihero) discovers that Arthur is in fact his most dangerous prey, and most formidable target.
Arthur is so vile and terrifying that Dexter can barely stomach the atrocities that the "Trinity Killer" has committed. Arthur's careful crossing of the line between being a family role model and modest school teacher to a truly evil serial killer warrants him as one of the worst TV villains of all.
8. Theodore 'T-Bag' Bagwell (Prison Break)
Technically, Prison Break is full of villains – well, "bad guys" anyways – but T-Bag takes the cake as one of the worst. Carrying a massive chip on his shoulder, the white supremacist has committed it all: murder, robbery, kidnapping, rape, assault and battery and he showed no signs of ever changing his ways.
T-Bag is one of the slimiest, creepiest and most obviously disturbed characters to appear on the small screen. T-Bag will do anything, kill anyone if it benefits him in the long run - and sometimes simply because he feels like it.
9. Wilson Fisk, aka The Kingpin (Marvel's Daredevil)
Wilson Fisk's presence is masterfully calculated, which is absolutely terrifying on screen. The violent criminal overlord will kill you with his bare hands before uttering an order for someone else to do it, and that's part of why he's such an evil character.
The willingness to consciously act in such a violent manner just oozes a immense mix of sociopath and psychopath, and it makes it terrifying to stand before him unsure if he is going to reach out and choke the life out of you or not. The Kingpin is one of Daredevil's greatest villains, and for obvious reasons.
These are just a few villains that deserve to compete with Negan for title of best villain, but what do you think?