Top 10 Comic Book Villains


Comic books are more popular than ever and with so many media options to see our super powered heroes and villains it is likely their popularity will only increase. And while the superheroes get the lion’s share of the attention, it is often a fact that the comic villains get a bigger spotlight than the heroes themselves. In a way, this makes sense as the villains are often more far more interesting than their good-two-shoes counterparts. So who are the “best” comic book villains? Well, this is a very subjective list but here is the criteria I used to build this list. How important the villain was in the life of “their” hero, how powerful were they (raw power and brain power), are they interesting to read about and how much to you love to hate them. In the end it came down to this: Would I want to read a story with this comic book villain if there were no heroes in the story. If the answer was yes, then they probably deserve to be on this list.

10. Kingpin

First Appearance: Amazing Spider-man #50, Marvel Comics

Image result for kingpin marvel

Wilson Fisk is a criminal mastermind who is involved in extensive illegal activities such as drug-running, smuggling, murder, and extortion. Despite this, he has no criminal record and an army of lawyers to keep it that way. He is a criminal financial strategist without parallel. Fisk has no superhuman powers, but the majority of his 400-plus pound bulk is solid muscle. He has battled heroes such as Captain America, Moon Knight and Daredevil, but his most despised antagonist has been Spider-Man. While you may not give the Kingpin his due, he has destroyed the life of Daredevil in a way few other heroes have been brought down. Recently he sparked the whole Spider-man New Day fiasco.

Most heinous crime: Ordered a hit on Spider-Man’s Aunt May.

9. Galactus

First Appearance: Fantastic Four #48, Marvel Comics

Image result for Fantastic Four #48

Sole survivor of the universe existing before the Big Bang, Galactus is perhaps the most feared being in the cosmos. Considering he devours planets, he has killed more beings than any the villain on this list or even all combined on this list. Although some may consider him a “force of nature” and a natural part of the universal order, the fear he elicits easily ranks him in the top ten of villains.

Most heinous crime: He has tried to devour Earth many times and his most famous feeding came at the expense of the Skrull home world, leaving the planet a lifeless rock.

8. Thanos

First Appearance: Iron Man #55, Marvel Comics

Image result for thanos iron man #55

Considering he has courted death as his lover, that should give you an idea about how impressive he is as a villain. If only Death will do, you are setting your sights high (or low). What kind of gifts do you offer Death? A lifeless universe according to Thanos.

He has controlled some of the most power objects in the universe such as the Cosmic Cube and the Infinity Gems and became god-like himself. He has defeated Galactus to add to his legend.

Most heinous crime: His villainy was seen at an early age when he attacked his home world with nuclear weapons, killing thousands, including his own mother. Now that is cold.

7. Doomsday

First Appearance: Superman: The Man of Steel #17, DC Comics

Image result for doomsday comic villain

Doomsday was created and evolved through cloning an infant and having it killed over and over again in one of the harshest habitats in existence, prehistoric Krypton. In other words, he was bred to be nasty.

Image result for The Man of Steel #17, DC Comics

Many may complain that Doomsday was a marketing ploy but you gotta give him his due becasue he did kill Superman and killing the Man of Steel has to count for something. If you are a one-trick pony, killing the greatest superhero in comic book history is certainly a good place to start. He also defeated the entire Just League, with one arm literally tied behind his back, before killing Superman.

Most heinous crime: He killed Superman. Really, he killed Superman.

6. Dr. Doom

First Appearance: Fantastic Four #5, Marvel Comics

Image result for Fantastic Four #5,

Victor Von Doom suffered an accident that caused his face to be scarred. After this accident he made matters worse when he then attached a hot steel mask to his face, further scarring him, physically and mentally. That takes commitment.

He has controlled various forces of the universe, much like Thanos, such as the Power Cosmic which he stole from the Silver Surfer. He has also usurped the powers of Galactus and a all-powerful being, the Beyonder. In other words he is crafty and smart.

Most heinous crime: He actually sent Franklin Richards, the child of Reed and Sue Richards of the Fantastic Four, to Hell seeking to torment his parents

5. Green Goblin

First Appearance: Amazing Spider-man #14, Marvel Comics

Image result for Amazing Spider-man #14

While not one of my favorite villains, he did cause the 2nd most defining moment in the career of Spider-Man. He murdered Spider-Man’s girlfriend Gwen Stacey when he dropped her from Washington Bridge. He has caused Spider-Man more problems and heart-ache than any other villain and had knowledge of Spider-man’s secret identity as Peter Parker. Considered to be Spider-Man’s most dangerous villain the Green Goblin’s insanity and lust for revenge only makes him that much more deadly.

Most heinous crime: Killed Gwen Stacey in front of Spider-Man.

4. Venom

First Appearance: Amazing Spider-Man #300, Marvel Comics

Image result for Amazing Spider-Man #300

Venom is actually a team-up between two beings, one an alien and one a human, who both hate Peter Parker/Spider-Man intensely. Venom is an alien symbiote that has bonded with a number of different hosts who all share its hatred, most notable Eddie Brock.

Venom has all the powers of Spider-Man but does not trigger Spider-Man’s early warning abilities, his spider sense, which gives him a crucial advantage over Spider-Man. Venom also has knowledge of Spidey’s secret identity and kidnapped Peter’s parents in an effort to lure him into trap. Although he has had a tendency to fight for good by protecting the innocent he started out as a villain and always comes back to his evil-doing roots. His extreme popularity guarantees him a place on this list.

Most heinous crime: Pushed Spider-Man in front of a train and turned Peter Parker into a ultra-violent vigilante while trying to bond with him.

3. Magneto

First Appearance: Uncanny X-men #1, Marvel Comics

Image result for xmen magneto

One of the first mutants to appear on the planet and also one of the most dangerous, Magneto has deemed that mutants or homo-superiors are homo sapiens’ successors as rulers of the planet. He is more than willing to sacrifice every human to achieve his ultimate goal of mutant domination on Earth.

His control of all magnetic forces him a good shot at this, especially when he leads his team of the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants or any army of misguided mutants. Not letting his past friendship with Charles Xavier get in the way, he has attacked the X-men throughout their history and knows their strengths and weaknesses.

Most heinous crime: He ripped Wolverine’s adamantium metal skeleton from his body and physically reduced the X-men to the level of a two-year old while leaving their minds in tact. Oh, and he killed Jean Grey.

2. Joker

First Appearance: Batman #1, DC Comics

Image result for first appearance of the joker

Update: Also read our list of the top 10 best Joker stories.

The maniacal Joker is Batman’s most dangerous foe. Unpredictable, murderous and surprisingly cunning, the Joker is a threat to all human life. Heath Ledger commented on his role, describing his character, the Joker as a “psychopathic, mass-murdering, schizophrenic clown with zero empathy.”

While Joker is a skilled inventor and chemist, the reason he is on this list is due to his purely evil actions spurred by his insanity. Nothing is beyond him and no life holds any value in his warped reality. With a maniacal intensity his focus is usually on destroying Batman while having a laugh doing it. Killing innocents isn’t only his plan, it is his desire.

His most heinous crime: He is a mass murderer killing hundreds of people. He killed the 2nd Robin, Jason Todd, Sarah Essen (Commissioner Gordon’s second wife), and crippled Batgirl.

1. Lex Luthor

First Appearance: Action Comics #23, DC Comics

Image result for lex luthor first appearance

Lex Luthor may be one of the most gifted persons alive in every facet of his life, but he is also a sociopath without regard for the suffering of others. His hatred for the Man of Steel drives him and makes him Superman’s greatest foe.

Becoming President of the United States and knowing that Kryptonite is the one weakness of Superman has given Lex advantages when trying to destroy Clark Kent’s alter ego. Lex’s disregard for everyone, believing himself superior to all others, has placed him at the top of the list. It has to be noted that he is more intelligent than Superman and has often out-smarted him. Add to the fact that nothing is too low or too vile for him, he has an advantage over the moral limitations of Superman. Being calculating, cool and a master manipulator puts Lex at the top of the comic book villain list.

Most heinous crime: Lex activated a “Doomsday Plan” to destroy Metropolis and burned the city to the ground killing thousands. He also had an affair Perry White’s wife, fathering a child.

There were many honorable mentions such as Doctor Octopus, Dark Phoenix, Sinestro and Apocalypse. Do you think any other comic book villains were overlooked? (Editors note: Red Skull and Darkseid deserve at least honorable mention.)

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  1. Well, this list seems like it was made by a guy who only reads Marvel comics and then decided “oh, yeah, Lex Lutor and Joker are also up there and who’s another DC villain I can throw in there? Oh yeah, that Doomsday guy who killed Superman.”

    Seriously, out of all the villains DC has in their roster, you guys choose Doomsday to fill a slot in the top 10? Not Sinestro? Not Darkseid? Not Ra’s Al Ghul? Not Brainiac? Not Anti-Monitor? Not Black Adam? Not Mongul? I mean, Doomsday’s not a bad villain but he’s more top 20/30 than top 10.

    Also where’s Loki? You know, the guy who is the whole reason behind the Avengers forming? Red Skull?

    Galactic is a Mary Sue and Thanos is a Darkseid rip off.

    • In all fairness, this list was made in 2008, so things have changed since then. But thanks for all the great additions.

  2. Carnage is VERY underrated…He killed more than a hundred people, some of which include his grandmother(pushed down a flight of stairs), and a little girl he pushed in front of a bus

  3. Incredible Hulk……. He has beat the hell out of many super heros and villains over the years. Since way back in the day he has had his own comic appeared in others comics and has been confrintational to the piont when all heros combine there efforts to beat a villain they then have to deal with the hulk

  4. what da hell, Joker is the most influence,smart,funny,mad,insane villian to ever have been and u put Lex Luthor on top, why

      • potentialKEN on

        Having long since read and commented on this list I can admit that from a certain perspective I can almost accept a rational legitimization of Lex Luthor as the #1 villain over the Joker. However, reading your response I feel compelled to reenter the debate. Are you seriously suggesting that it was Heath Ledger’s interpretation of the character that established the Joker’s “world-wide fame”? If so, do you really think that you are qualified to be evaluating a list like this? Twenty years prior Jack Nicholson made quite a splash as the character and twenty years before that Cesar Romero beat out Frank Sinatra for the role (and all of that was twenty plus years after the character was created). Admittedly Luthor first appeared on the comic scene at around the same time. However, by your logic, I wonder if you are suggesting that it is the fresh memory of Kevin Spacey’s portrayal of the character (as opposed to Gene Hackman’s) in the mediocre “Superman Returns” which cemented Lex’s rank at #1. Maybe it was Michael Rosenbaum’s interpretation of the character for Smallville that secured the top spot? Perhaps it is simply that in a short-attention-span postmodern culture comic book mythology is only as good as it’s most recent cinematic interpretation.

  5. Lex Luthor is simply not scary, he’s just boring (like Superman). The Joker should have been number one. He is more deadly than the other nine combined. The Mad Hatter, the Lizard, Dr Octopus and the Scarecrow should have been on the list too.

  6. What about Doc Ock when he got adamentium tentacles he wiped the floor with the Avengers and X-Men while the other villians with him just watched.

  7. I think that the Joker deserves to be at the top of this list because when you think about it he is a very insane man but his opponents are giants among men yet he still manages to bloody their noises.

  8. Technically Spiderman, NOT the Green Goblin, killed Gwen Stacy (with a little help from physics). Any later revision of the story aside, THAT is the whole point of ‘the death of Gwen Stacy’ as a lynch pin in the Spiderman mythology.

    And, of course I agree with everyone else who argues for Joker as the #1 comic book villain. Literally, symbolically, psychologically, allegorically, etc. He is the defining archetype of what it means for a ‘super hero’ to have an arch nemesis; an equal but opposite ‘super villain’ whose existence defines the hero (and vice versa).

    For all of the same reasons that I vote Joker #1; as much as I am a Magneto fan, I really have to question his inclusion on the list as a “villain”. He is Xavier’s ‘equal and opposite’ for the sake of the mythology but, particularly as the treatment of his character has evolved over the past 40 years, that’s really a question of ideology. The ‘evil’ of his ‘villainy’ is a matter of perspective. And, not to cause a riot at Xavier’s, but I too think “Magneto was right”.

    Finally, MUCH RESPECT to the commenter who brought up Hitler! [Unlike Stalin who was a US ally in WWII] Captain America fought (and punched) Adolph Hitler in the Golden Age. I get how it is counter intuitive to the type of fan-boy debates that these sorts of lists are meant to incite, but that was using reason and an impressive command of comic book history to find the ultimate loop hole in the question. The atrocity of his actions aside HITLER IS THE WORST AND MOST POWERFUL COMIC BOOK VILLAIN BECAUSE HE IS THE ONLY ONE WHO IS ACTUALLY REAL!

  9. Top ten
    1. Joker
    3. Darkseid
    4. Scarecrow
    5.Red skull
    7. Doomsday
    8. Brainiac

  10. Carlos Giraldo on

    Luthor first? Really? Though I agree he had to be in the top 10, I don’t think he surpasses the power of Magneto which IMO should be first, followed in second by the Joker.

  11. mighty black adam on

    i cant believe that darkseid isnt on this list… he should be 3rd… 1st should be joker than lex than darkseid

  12. 1. Joker
    2. Red Skull
    3. Lex Luther
    4. Magneto
    5. Dr Doom
    6. Megatron
    7. Shredder
    8. Darkseid
    9. Apocalypse
    10. Green Goblin
    Honorable mentions Ra’s al Ghul, Sinestro, Mr Sinister, General Zod, Deathstroke, Sabretooth,

  13. in the secret wars doctor doom took galactus’ power along with most of the omnipotent being the beyonder’s power. he also stole the cosmic cube along with odin’s power.

  14. i am sure that venom should not appear in the list, he didn’t a great damage to spiderman and not mention that he is like a anti-hero, no a complete villain

    and yes, the red skull should appear

  15. List is good but the following are more dangerous than kingpin And Dr. Doom
    1. Bizarro
    3. Red Lantern Corps
    4. Parallax
    5. Darksied
    Also Doomsday is should be considered more dangerous than Luther, because he killed superman not luther!
    The biggest miss is that Bane should be top 5 simply for what he did to Batman!!!

  16. joey armenio on

    i definitely think Darkseid should of been on the list but considering Thanos is more or less his Marvel counterpart (admitted my Stan Lee) it’s fine. Thanos should of been number one, his lover is death itself, and he has killed more then half of all lifeforms in the galaxy. it will be exciting to see Thanos in the second Avengers

    • Yes, i agree but then the creator of this list should of put both villains. and yeah it will be exciting to see Thanos in the avengers they will definitely need more muscle. spider man will be awesome to see. maybe thats why they created the new spiderman movie recently “the amazing spiderman”

      • joey armenio on

        well they can’t use spiderman because he is currently under the rights of Sony. but i agree they do need more muscle if they plan to defeat Thanos. Stan Lee sad he would like to see Black Panther in Avenger 2. they are coming out with a black panther movie in 2014 so it is a big possibility.

  17. Magneto is only #3 what?? How is he below Lex Luthor? This man has sacrificed and manipulated his children to make his point. I mean he’s infiltrated the X Men by befriending and DATING ROGUE!! If you think he’s a ‘GOOD’ guy, then you deserve to be a Joe Quesada fan. #3 my A$$

    and the Joker #2, the man would blow himself up to complete a joke to show up Batman and he turned and educated psychiatrist into a murderous clownfaced psychopath c’mon!!!

    Mr. Sinister?

    to each his own list I guess, I have mine.

  18. the Joker is probably the most recognizable comic villain of all time but he is always the Joker, all the time, never presenting the world a face other than that of the Clown Prince of Crime. We don’t even know his real name. Norman Osborn, on the other hand, is a monster that can walk the streets without being recognized for the evil that he is (And yes, Norman has been outed at least twice as the Green Goblin, and both times has managed to overcome it and pull the wool over the world’s eyes and con them into believing that he’s not. So, the assumption of this article is that his identity is currently secret). That he is the Goblin is something he has to keep carefully hidden from the world at large so that he can continue to function freely within it. Only by adopting another identity can he fully let loose with the rage and the mania that more than once have claimed his precipitous hold on sanity. Everyone has a “goblin,” a dark side within them, and most people are able to control that side and not let it out. That Norman is in a position, through his wealth and costumed identity, to give his demons free reign at times, escaping the limitations that society and the legal system put on aberrant behavior makes him the most compelling and fascinating villain

    • Everyone has a “Darkseid” (Lol). Seriously everyone (nearly everyone) has a dark part to them but that doesn’t make them become corrupt businessmen and/or scientists. They also don’t necessarily become sadistic murderers either. Norman Osborn has real issues.

  19. Venom is the worst spider-man villain and the Green Goblin is the greatest comic book villain of all time.

  20. If doom is a mega villian den joker is a super ultra villian i mean doom is smart and rich and in d marvel universe d mean powerful bad guys attack the earth alot so dat’s y doom is able to find a weakness and access d alien tech but in dc universe a mean powerful bad guy often appears so keepin track and findin a weakness is a prob yet people lik lex always steal alien tech so without further writin or babblin here’s the top ten most powerful villian:
    1.galactus eats planets 4 lunch
    2.anti monitor anti reality anti-everythin when he’s on the roll his unstoppable
    3.superman prime mz… The master reality warper whatever his name
    6.the void
    9.apocalypse dont hav anythin on dis guy but i heard he’s real powerful
    10.valdilus cant remember but my spelling is close i think And the main event Top ten most insane wicked cruel evil obsessed villains
    1.the joker kills wit laughter
    2.doom reed richards must suffer
    3.loki thor must die
    4.lex kill superman and he makes u a billionaire
    5.thunderbolt ross insane about hulk
    6.magneto wants only mutants on earth
    7.venom where’s spiderman goblin
    9.ares god of war skull

  21. I am shocked that there is only one Batman villain on this list. there are many who were overlooked, such as Scarecrow, who made Batman piss himself on several occasions, mentally scarred most of the city, and was almost declared a God of Fear by the city. True he hasn’t done as many physically destructive things as alot of the people on this list, but he has done more mental damage than any other Batman villain, save the Joker. Also Ra’s al Ghul for being freaking IMMORTAL. Bane, for breaking Batman’s spine and indirectly causing more damage to the city than any other villain. I think you can see where I’m going with this

  22. Just one:

    Hal Jordan/Parallax He is the second Green Lantern in the earth…

    Almost Destroy the DC Universe in Zero Hour:Crisis in Time(1994)

    Move the entropy Destroying the Universe and time by centuries

  23. Lex Luthor deserves to be #1 because while nobody was looking, he took forty cakes. He took 40 cakes. That’s as many as four tens. And that’s terrible.

  24. Why is Lex Luthor in 1# place, he is top 10 material but not #1 It should be Joker or someone else Worthy but Am I the only one who thinks Deadpool should be there or Bane, he did brake Batman’s Back.

    • Deadpool, is more or less an antihero. So I don’t think they considered hjim for this list due to that technicality

  25. Harley_Quinn27 on

    yes poison ivy, the joker should be number one deffo and although shes not one of the best harely quinn is pretty epic you actually havnt got one female villan on tht list

  26. lex luther is NOT number 1… To be honest i thought Dr. Doom should come before Venom and Green Goblin… and where's sandman???

  27. Weak list. Doomsday was a crappy Bane-type character and a poor contrivance. Luthor should have been the real instrument of Superman's alleged design instead of another steroids freak. Speaking of Luthor, how does he ever make #1? Almost all of his popularity comes from arching Superman, which has routinely pushed him into leadership positions in evil organizations despite really lacking merits as far as villains go. Yes, he's a super-genius and a criminal mastermind, but he's really not on par with the super-geniuses like Doctor Doom who are combat-ready or the masterminds like Kingpin who can hold their own in a fight.

    Not sure why Magneto makes so many lists, as he's had numerous hero runs including heading the X-Men at times. But I guess you'd have to include him, as the list is incredibly mainstream and has no real distinct flavor.

  28. I'm torn. Magneto is, in my estimation, unassailable as a character in comics. There is to my mind not greater character ever created by any comic than Magento and when he is involved in stories within the Marvel world he dominates them and his power can be adapted through electro-magnetism and diamagnetism to effect any material in existence. Yes dispite this it is debatable whether or not he truely is a villain. I'd argue he's more of an anti-hero because his goal has never just been world domination, he has never just acted out the desire for personal power or wealth or done something jsut because he could, his actions have always been governed by his desire to protect his own kind and get the best for them and he has never been just a black-and-white villian. So if I count him as a villian I'd count him as the best but I not sure whether he in a super-villian in the true sense of the word.

  29. Gotta get Vandal Savage on this list. Immortals make for really interesting super villains.

  30. we love with some villains. especially for Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3.

    Here the list of villains from us.

    01. Doomsday

    02. Apocalypse

    03. Dr. Doom

    04. Lex Luthor

    05. Mr. Sinister

    06. Proteus

    07. Shadow King

    08. Master Mold

    09. Galactus

    10. Marvel Divas

  31. Your list may be appropriate until the release of The Dark Night…

    i know this is a list of Comic book villains and not other media…

    but still the potrayal of The Joker by heath Ledger affects the nature of the whole character…

    It Makes The joker not only number one of this list but also the Greatest Villain of all time…

    in all media…

    in all world…

    in every place in this world or hypothetical…

    no one stands infront of the joker…

    Do you know, what supervillains do when they want to scare each other?

    they tell each other stories of The Joker…

    • Agree with you all the way you need to take into concideration the link between the heroes and villains at which the joker batman relationship is best. However lex Luther doesn’t have much to cope with because though superman is a good superhero he isn’t the best.

  32. Two-Face?
    Doctor Octopus?

    At least one of them should be on the list. But good list nevertheless

  33. Ultron should be on the list.

    Ultron He hates humanity, mamed a entire country in front of the Avengers, and trying to appeal to Ultron is a fool's errand with the exception of one version. He's so deplorable that he makes Joker look like Mr.Rogers. Think of the worst possible kind of robot, and you get the brutal ruthless Ultron.

  34. Joker rules all the way! Didnt anyboy knew that he had killed Lex Luthor bcoz he wasnt invited to join the group of supervilians of the Justice League & took over the leadership of supervillains. How can anyone 4get how he almost killed superman if it wasnt for the batman who had to save his kryptonian a**.

    Joker + Harley Quinn = The Genocidal Couple. This deadly duo can wet pants of all supervillians combined single handedly. They dont need any special powers. All they have to do is Smile! 🙂

  35. Arachnid Adventures on

    It's got to be Dr Doom for me – though I've always had a soft spot for Nebulon from the old Defenders comics.

  36. I judge comic villains based upon how difficult they would be for ANY super hero to deal with. Thus Lex Luthor can be removed from the list. Beyond Superman, kryptonite… doesn't do much to deal damage to other super heroes. Galactus… eats planets, and deserves to be #1. The Dark Phoenix deserves to be #2 because she has limitless power, and can just about do anything to anything she sees. #3 is debatable, but I have to go with Apocalypse. He managed to alter history, and make it fit to his design. #4 Scarlet Witch… having the capability to alter reality ranks high on the difficult to deal with list. Dr. Doom gets #5 if you add up all of his accumulated capabilities. #6 goes to Loki, he's a god, enough said. #7 goes to Onslaught, you should need no explanation here if you know who and what Onslaught is. I'd award #8 to the Shadow King because other than a mutant with psionic powers, he'd be almost impossible to take on. Magneto is #9 for obvious reasons. And #10 goes to Deadpool, he just never stays down, sometimes good, sometimes bad, still just can't be kept down. That being said, apologies to DC. DC villains are often some of the most interesting and entertaining to read about. But they just don't pose great threats in comic books which have basically no base in reality. DC villains are excellent, just not quite as powerful and difficult to deal with as Marvel's since Marvel tends to stretch reality just a twinge more… For super-villains who are the most significant, or most entertaining, this list I have isn't adequate. That list would look like:

    1. The Joker

    2. Green Goblin

    3. Lex Luthor

    4. Dr. Doom

    5. Red Skull

    6. The Riddler

    7. Venom

    8. Magneto

    9. Carnage

    10. Apocalypse

  37. What about Bane? He broke batman's back, he freed all of the arkham patients, He knows where Batman lives, He figured out his secret identity, did I mention he BROKE BATMAN'S BACK!

  38. Good list, wouldn't have had kingpin and make Joker number 1

    couple names for consideration

    Deathstroke (best most kickass killer)

    Sinestro (drove Hal Jordan to destroy green latern corps)

    Bullseye (killed 2 of daredevils girlfriends, he should be there over kingpin, who fyi is more a daredevil villian than a spiderman)

    Bane (broke Batman's back)

    Dr Light (raped Elongated Mans wife, took down all of the teen titans witht he exception of Cyborg and nearly killed Green Arrow and Speedy

  39. This should be the top 10 marvel villians

    Oh and how the hell does LEX LUTHER beat out THE JOKER???????????

  40. Doom deserved high (maybe 2). Luthor pretty much sucks and has a horrible design to boot. Green Goblin also deserves a spot higher than Venom, I mean Goblin has done way worse things to Spidey than Venom ever imagined.

  41. no no no the joker is the top villian but the one i watched on tv top 10 comic book villians is the green goblin

  42. Parisideon Danuke on

    I've got to go for the Anti-Monitor as # 1 (maybe Psycho Pirate and Superboy Prime for an honorable mention), Red Skull,and yes I must cough as I say it but Hal Jorden the Green Lantern. As a hero he was fantastic, as a villian he was awesome. Yes I know he eventually got his good marks in again, but come on, any silver age hero turned villian has got to get some props. I do love Lex and he is a badass as well as the Joker, But the Anti-Monitor destroyed a Multi-Verse making him the King of Kills. Also just to comment on CK's alter ego, He was Kal-El from birth, Clark Kent from early childhood, and then Superman. He didn't create the Clark alter ego, the Kent's did to sheild their adoptive son from outsiders who would correctly identify him as an extra-terristrial. I do believe that Black Adam should get a 2ndary honorable mention. I am not so fond of Kingpin being on the list, yeah he's tough and yes he has his hands in a great number of things but he's a glorrified Mob Boss. I know Mxyplyzyk has been both good and maybe not evil, but certainly an advessary so he should have an 2ndary honorable mention.

  43. Well Mephisto should be there, he's the reason there is a Ghost Rider.

    Bullseye should make it there as well since he killed Elektra once.

    Deacon Frost should also be there, he's the reason Blade's half vampire.

    And what about Deathstroke, he's a total badass.

  44. Great list, but Joker should be Number One. He is insanity personified. There is no one, and I mean NO ONE, more dangerous than a man who has no motive. He does what he wants, when he wants, and he has absolutely no regard for human life. He'll kill one, then, hundreds, and it's all the same to him.

    Also, Ozymandias (Adrian Veidt) from Watchmen should definitely be on here. He completely destroyed New York killing hundreds of thousands. And he did it all in the name of the 'greater good', which is seriously messed up. Not only that, but he killed The Comedian and beat the hell outta Rorschach, both of who are absolute badasses. And he is thought to be the smartest man in the world, which is a tough title to compete with.

    He definitely deserves a mention.

    • Rorschach – You mentioned Ozymandias so he is now on this list by your words. I agree he deserves to be mentioned, but his brief, albeit intense, time on the comic book scene keeps him from the top 10 comic book villains.

  45. Joker should have been #1 simply because yes Lex is a badass but all his evil doings are to wrapped up in his money. Carnage should have been up there to but there are way to many good villains to just do a broad top ten list and hit all of them.

  46. Brian Perkins on

    What I like about venom and the joker especially are that the two have such dynamic personalities, which I think makes them great villains. People like lex luthor, apocalypse, doomsday, they're very bland, and their being all-powerful and whatnot just isn't that interested to read. They're all representative of a real-life apocalypse, hence the way they're slow-moving, calculating, and seem unstoppable.

    The joker is a better villain because although you can kill him, he has the insanity that's so rare in villains. It's a little piece of his brain that could potentially exist in anyone. You kill one joker, but what's going to stop another from being born? He represents the most vile and evil things that a human can be, and therefore, he takes the cake.

    After hitler, of course.

    Then again, spawn fights satan. All those books blow though.

  47. if your using all comic book villians then megatron/galvatron and unicron should be on the list.

  48. alright this list sucks. first off you dont have apocalypse, darkseid, loki, mephisto or dark pheonix. i thik whoever made this list wanted all of our opinions becuase they didnt know who to pick. here would be my list.

    1. Apocolypse

    2. Galactus

    3. Magneto

    4. Dark Pheonix

    5. Thanos

    6. Doomsday

    7. Darkseid

    8. Mephisto

    9. Loki

    10. Doctor Doom

    those are definatly the top ten strongest super villians but if it were about the most popular villians then the list might be more accurate

  49. The Mark of Zorro on

    First, its been said enough times, but the Joker is definitely #1. And I might add "kidnapping and torturing a child (Tim Drake), driving him insane, then inhabiting his body decades later" to his "most heinous acts".

    Also, I agree with the two others who have mentioned it so far, Watchmen's villian (and yes, he is a villian) deserves to be pretty high on the list, for being both a mass-murderer and an obscurantist bastard.

    Finally, did the makers of this list consider Japanese comic books as well? Because Makoto Shishio from Rurouni Kenshin is one hell of a villain. I mean, the guy's only ethic is "the strong survive, the weak die" and he expresses it in his sword, which actually draws power (in a terrifyingly non-magical way) from the flesh of the people he kills with it. Not only that, but he takes a big bite out of Kenshin's shoulder, spits it out, and says "Blech. Neither poison nor medicine." Now that's extra-strength crazy if you ask me.

  50. They all are worthy save for Galactus as he isn't truly an evil being. Although his mere presense on this last probably has more to do with the fact that his actions usually lead to confrontations with superheroes. There's no way that you could squeeze the top 10 on this lest when there are so many out there worthy of being on it. Apocalypse, Sabretooth, Loki, Carnage, Red Hulk.

  51. DoctorOctopus on

    I'm glad you've got one of the doctors in there. I'm trying to find a way to criticize this list but it looks pretty damn good. I like the design here too. Great work guys.

  52. Quote from text: "…g to destroy Clark Kent’s alter ego…. "

    The "alter ego" is referring to Superman.

    Though Superman isn't Clark's alter ego, but the other way around.

    He was Superman from birth, to cover that up, he created an alter ego called Clark Kent.

  53. this list was ok until the point that u put lex luthor first, everyone knows joker should be first luther should be 5th if anything

  54. take away Venom from the list and include APOCALYPSE and put him in no. 4 spot.

    Kingpin is just an ordinary villain. Replace him instead with Darkseid and put him in no. 8.

    Lex deserves to be in the no. 1. His battle is not only against Superman but against the entire Justice League, can you imagine that.

  55. My question is this list based on the power level of the villain, the number of people he/she has killed, or based on the villains originality and how important he is to the comic book he appears in? Personally, I base how great a villain is on how much he challenges his opponent, both physically and psychologically, as well as how interesting he is to read about and watch he plots unfold.

    By that logic, I would say I would have to have Dr. Doom be #1 on my list. As Peter Sanderson once wrote that he is part of the subset of super-villains known as mega-villains. Doom is a villain that can only exist in comics: a master of sorcery and technology, ruler of his own kingdom, who possesses a warped sense of honor and is willing to stand up against much more powerful foes (Mephisto, Galactus, Thanos, the Beyonder) and somehow win.

    For actual evilness, I would say the number one villain should be the one who appeared on the cover of Captain America #1 back in 1940: Adolf Hitler. But some villains are just to evil and scary to list.

  56. Superboy Prime should be on here. He caused the death of Superboy!

    Also, Luther is evil and smart, but no-one outdoes the Joker.

    And also, what about Black Adam? He KILLED AN ENTIRE COUTRY!!!

    Just a couple of my favourites (Go Sivana!)

  57. Venom should definently be #1. Joker maybe #2. Lex Luther maybe like 6. Red Skull should be on the list too. Also Venom's best crime was when he knocked Spider-Man unconcious and kidnapped him to a desert island. Venom rules!

  58. First of all this isn't a most powerful list.I think this list should be based on how strongly does the villian affect the hero.The plot of the overall comic itself.Stuff that changes everything vs the everyday details.

    I wouldn't have put the King Pin in there maybe Ultron or Mesphisto.Instead of Doomsday,I would hav put either Darkseid or Apocalypse,but not above Thanos.In my opinion Thanos or Doom should be number one because they're more reoccuring and universal threats,but still remain a real character unlike some abstract being like Galactus.I mean Galactus is a huge threat and incredibily powerful but has the personality of stale bread….I HUNGER….and that's about the plot.Superman needs more interesting villians because his personality is also quite boring.This list should be only Xmen,Batman,Spiderman and FF4 enemies and maybe a JLA or two.

    People like the Antimonitor and Onslaught changed the comic greatly especially the Antimonitor but wasn't a reoccuring foe more like huge one shots.That's the only reason I don't think they should be on the list.

  59. Jason, I agree. Lex really has been done well in any movies and Smallville, which I love, went a different route. You actually were rooting for Lex to be better. (Keep an eye out for the top 10 Smallville episodes).

  60. I totally agree about 1-st and 2-nd position. Lex Luthor and the Joker are the craziest sociopaths ever created in comics, never mind they don't possess super powers. The bad thing is that till now it's not created movie who reveals the truely nature of Lex Luthor – the Superman movies make him funny sociopath (something like the Joker in the first Batman movie) or Smallville (first six seasons) makes him not so evil. I hope that in near future Superman movies will be directed by someone who really knows what to do :). I've heard rumors that the director of next Superman movie will be Christopher Nolan but we will see.

  61. What about the Mandarin. I think onslaught should be mentioned as he is probably one of the most powerfull bad guys on marvels list.

  62. Dark Knight 187 on

    Apocalypse def should be on over either Kingpin, Galactus, or Doomsday. I'm not a Red Skull fan but I'd put him 9 or 10 and Joker should be #1. Not a bad list though. What about Brainiac? I like the comment about Poison Ivy but she shouldn't be on here.

  63. Reverend Slaughter on

    Actually, Joker's most heinous crime wasn't killing Robin, or crippling Barbara Gordon.

    It was cited in one of the Hitman comics in the 90's that Joker once gassed an entire room of Kindergarteners. So… who wants some tots? They were cooked in a gas oven… HAHAHHAhahahaha

    • That is the perfect Joker moment. I am appalled and scared but i chuckled at the same time

  64. Oh I forgot, the joker's kill count is hard to establish exactly yet I believe it to be in the hundreds of thousands of people range not hundreds. Trust me in this one, he truly kills for the fun of it there is no exact motive behind his crimes. He does not care for world domination, money or anything in particular. His only obsession is the death of Batman a foe truly worth killing and he will burn the world to ashes just to achieve that goal. He's awesome.

  65. You forgot Ozymandias from watchmen. First of all, he's not subject to most villains main flaw, he does not ramble about his evil plan before execution. Indeed at the moment the minutemen find him in Karnak, his fortress, he had already begun implementation of his plan to kill half of the inhabitants of New York city. Apart from that the heroes are unable to stop him and his plan succeeds. His motives may have been heroic in nature, but killing half of New York while driving most of the survivors insane… That's cold as hell man. Oh by the way joker should be number 1, Lex is a good villain and all but the joker is craziest most sadistic and evil bastard ever to grace the pages of comic books. Lex motives are simple, he has a penis envy of sorts against superman yet the joker is simply a irredeemable psychopath who kills innocents for pleasure. Lex can't compete with that.

  66. Jason Scherer on


  67. I don't know if it's just me but Poison Ivy,the Batman villainess should be in that list too.

    She was the first actual feminist and the first actual environment fighter in any comics. She is a perfect femme-fatale – seductive (just try to google "poison Ivy" for photos and you will see how beautiful they draw her),yet extremely deadly "thanks" to a dangerous mind and a toxic kiss.

  68. Sir Jorge, If you are going to say a list is completely flawed you should give some reasons or tell us how we missed the mark. Which comic book villains did we miss?

  69. Waugh Waugh what about the Penguin? "The refined gentleman of crime" was the perfect contrast to demented, psychotic lunatics like the Joker and Two-face. It's a travesty that the Penguin didn't crack the top ten.

  70. darkknight9761 on

    Rhas Al Guhl was a man who hated evil, and yet he became what he despised to defeat it, very misguided! I think a fair comparison could be made between he and Marvel's "villain" Magneto.

  71. darkknight9761 on

    I want to thank Byron for letting me know about this list. It was very informative. I do agree however, that Darkseid should have been included in the list. I really don't think that Galactus should have been included, because Reed Richards proved that Galactus was a "force of nature", which was proved when he stood trial for saving him, (and then he destroyed the Skrull homeworld),by the Shiar, and Reed was acquitted when the conceptual entity Eternity(summoned by Uatu the Watcher)proved that Galactus was INDEED a force of nature, predestined to "weed out" the unworthy species at the end of "our universal cycle". I do agree with the #1 pick, and the #2 pick. Joker is a TOTAL sociopath!, and Lex is just plain evil(actually, I'd classify him as a sociopath too!)Let's not forget Rhas Al Guhl!

  72. The Joker should be #1.

    Red Skull & Apocalypse should definitely make the top 10 list. To make them fit I'd remove Kingpin & Doomsday.

    Not only did Red Skull plan the death of Captain America, he also killed Peter Parker's parents, forcing him to live with his aunt & uncle which lead to him becoming Spider-man. S.H.I.E.L.D. considers him one of their greatest threats.

    Apocalypse deserves to be on the list as the oldest living mutant, as the person who: created Mr. Sinister, created Stryfe, infected Cyclops' son (who became Cable because of it), and gave Angel new wings (making him into one of his Four Horsemen). If for nothing else, he had a hand in creating some of the X-Men's top villains & super heroes.

  73. Snicker Snacker on

    The Joker killed the second robin? Why did he stop? He was on a roll.

    • Harley_Quinn27 on

      well he did turn the third robin into joker junior although he did revert back he still did it the joker is a LEGEND!!!

  74. Lobo, or is he just an anti-hero?

    He killed his own home world for frags sake, he also beat the crap outta super man – twice. once drunk (check it out)

  75. Your choice of images for the list are great except Lex Luthor. I was always a big fan of the Marvel Universe images and the images they used on the slurpee cups back in the 70's and those remind me of them

  76. your list is HIGHLY flawed there, bubba….

    The Kingpin shouldn't even sneak into the top 50, let alone the top 10.

    also, Lex Luthor is #1? not likely….

  77. I'm not gonna name names for spoiler's sake, but The Watchmen's villain deserves #1

  78. I wouldn't even really consider Galactus a villain. He was created for the purpose of destroying worlds, to balance out creation so its not like he has evil intent, he just has a job to do.

  79. The list is cool but these definitely should have been included:


    Ra’s A Ghul,


    and u could remove Galactus and Venom for they have some good in them.

  80. George Perry on

    Mr. Sinister? Apocalypse? Stryfe managed to shoot Professor Xavier! Luthor is a punk at best and a schmuck at worst. Bah to DC villains not named Joker.

    • Well IDK:
      Darkseid is extremely evil to the point where I can confidently say he is worse than Apocolapyse, Galactus, and Green Goblin

      Ras Al Goul is another

      Also Brainiac, Doomsday and 2face arent slouches

  81. Anti-Monitor… I mean, he was responsible for Crisis on Infinite Earths!

    Alexander Luthor… Infinite Crisis.

    Red Skull… Planned Captain America's assassination.

  82. about the joker

    you forgot that he shot her in the hip leaving her as a cripple til our days in KILLING JOKE

    • I heard that some villain killed SPIDERMAN !!!!!!!!! The people
      Of america were REALLY mad!!!!!!!! So they brought him back
      To life.shouldn’t that villain be number .1???????!!!!!!!!!!!!

  83. I can't believe I didn't list the Red Skull under honorable mentions. That was a clear omission I have corrected. As well as Darkseid. I have always been more of a Marvel guy and I admit Darkseid never interested me.

    I did consider Carnage over Venom, but didn't think I could include both so I went with the more popular comic book villain in Venom. Venom is more interesting to me because of his twisted code of ethics and he has affected Spider-man more than Carnage.

  84. The Jokers most heinous crime is killing Jason Todd? Who the hell cared about Jason Todd, what about Barbara Gordon and the Commish?

  85. I think Carnage should have been on the list instead of Venom. Carnage is way more dangerous, and is as demented and evil as the Joker.

    Eddie Brock still has some goodness in him, regardless of his hate por Spidey. Carnage doesn't.

  86. Darksied.

    Ra's A Ghul.

    Red Skull.




    I think any fan could make a pretty strong case for most of those villians. But I am shocked that Red Skull isn't on the list. He was a freakin' Nazi who basically hated everything. He's the type of guy that maliciosly kicks puppys.

  87. I cannot believe Dark Phoenix didn't make the list, didn't she destroy a whole solar system?