Bookish

T5W Rewind – Favourite Villains

Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Sam@Thoughts on Tomes over on Goodreads.

This month’s topics for the Top 5 Wednesday series are Rewind topics – which means we can choose any previously used topic throughout the series. For today’s topic, I have chosen Favourite Villains.


In any book I read or a movie I watch, I crave complex characters.

I enjoy discovering characters that are not entirely likeable.

The protagonists must have flaws and the purpose of their stories is to overcome them. Equally, for their antagonists, there must be still some humanity left in them in order for me to sympathise with them. I will not condone their actions, but I may at least understand, where that behaviour is coming from.

There are many evil psychopathic villains out there and they have their place. My list below probably consists mostly of sympathetic or rather tragic villains.

Side note: The Orangutan Librarian wrote a brilliant post on Why Villains are the Greatest. I really recommend checking it out!


  • Sméagol / Gollum – The Lord of the Ring Series

Gollum

Let’s pause and appreciate Gollum’s portrait by Frédéric Bennett 

Gollum is probably my favourite.

I like his character because there is still some humanity left in him, despite being consumed by his extremely powerful desire for the Ring.

He always gives me hope; that humanity can persevere.

  • Loki – Norse Mythology (and Marvel comics)

loki

Picture by incredible artist Sceith

Loki is a broken man damaged by his past.

The legends tell us the harder he tries, the harder he usually falls.

I guess that could make his actions seem somehow relatable. And I think that’s what makes him an interesting character as well.

  • Magneto – Marvel Comics, X-Men

Magneto

Image credit

Another character haunted by his dark past.

His intentions are to make the world a better place for the mutants.

Unfortunately his approach, to kill all humans, is what makes him an anti-hero material. That doesn’t mean we approve of his choices, but can at least understand what made him into that villain.

  • Anakin Skywalker / Darth Vader

star wars origin

Photo credit

Because every hero has a villain potential.

And because we don’t know what we are capable of doing until everything we love is threatened to be taken away from us.

And because of that redemption and hope that goes with it.

  • Jamie Lannister from “A Song of Ice and Fire” series

George R.R Martin has this cunning ability to create complex characters that I just want to know more of.

got__jaime_lannister_by_antylopa-dazvdlv

Amazing drawing by Antylopa

Jamie is one of them.

In the first few books, he is a ‘classic’ villain. His actions are fuelled by his selfish and ego-centric behaviour and of course there is that sibling love.

Then he is forced to face his disability and he raises up to that challenge.

It has something to do with certain Brienne of Tarth. Their unlikely friendship and those first glimpses of Jamie’s humanity, that were there all along but buried deep within, are probably one of my favourite parts of the Game of Thrones series.


There you have it. Now over to you friends.

What are your favourite villains? Fancy sharing some of them with me? 🙂

27 thoughts on “T5W Rewind – Favourite Villains”

    1. Welcome to blogosphere! 👋 And thanks for stopping by and taking time to comment. 😊
      Jamie is certainly and interesting character, glad you feel the same way. And thank you! ❤️

      Like

    1. Oh thank you. I have this weird obsession with human behaviour and villains are great to analyse. It goes along: are people born evil or rather made. I don’t know the book you mentioned but have a feeling that I might enjoy it! 😊

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh yes that fascinates me too! Have you read Barry Lyga’s fictuous trilogy (first novel I Hunt Killers), it touches that too as it’s about a boy who wonders if he’ll grow up to be a serial killer like his father. It’s really good! You should totally check out The Perfect Girfriend by Karen Hamilton as well, I’m sure you’d like it 😊

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I haven’t heard of that trilogy but loving its description, I will definitely check it out, thank you! 😊
        My summer reading list is starting to take a shape. 😊

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Amazing picks Vera! I agree with Magneto and Loki, they are so complex. My favorite thing about Game of Thrones is all the characters are so well developed, we got a reason why they did what they did. Even the villains are humanized, it’s hard to call them a villain as they just do what they do to survive in that cruel world 🙂 My favorite is definitely the Lannister siblings…. whether they are a villain or an anti-hero, they are definitely the most complex characters in the series!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I could not agree more Tasya. It’s the complexity and flaws all those characters have that make them interesting and also on some level relatable. Because nobody is ‘perfect’.
      The Lannister siblings are certainly fascinating! 😊👌

      Like

    1. Oh thank you. I am so impressed with those brilliant artists and their drawings. Their collection is just amazing.
      Ha ha, I can see why you love Loki. He is certainly an intriguing character. 😊

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Me too! I disliked his character early on but then Brienne happened to meet him and I had to pause to rethink how I felt about him. That’s what I appreciate about GoT… how we often have to rethink how we feel about characters as “heroes” do stupid things and villains “noble” things from time to time. I’m glad you enjoy Jamie’s character as well and thank you! 😊❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  2. aww thank you for sharing my post!! ❤
    I really agree about liking characters who are not entirely likeable too. And Gollum is a brilliant example of this!! And I totally get what you mean about Loki (I love him!!!) And yes, I completely agree about getting where Magneto is coming from (even if what he's doing is unforgivable) So agree about every great hero having great villain potential (also Darth Vader is one of my favourites too- and I agree about how he teaches us to hope!!) Jaime is one of my absolute favourites from GOT!
    Amazing list!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think all complex characters that have flaws have a potential to be either heroes or villains. Because nobody can ever be perfect and our quest to overcome our flaws is something every book / movie hero should go through to give us hope.
      Without hope comes despair. That tomorrow will be the same as today.
      I loved your post, your reasons in that for “why” were fantastic! 👏👏👏

      Like

  3. “The protagonists must have flaws and the purpose of their stories is to overcome them. Equally, for their antagonists, there must be still some humanity left in them in order for me to sympathise with them.” Yikes, you read my mind! This is somewhat verbatim (well, not totally) what I’ve written in an upcoming review of mine, so I totally agree with you there. XD

    And I love your picks! I absolutely love Gollum, Loki, Magneto, and Darth Vader for their complex arcs. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha ha, it could be inspiration. That has a tendency to give people that interact ideas 💡. Liz Gilbert talks about it in Big Magic – some of those stories are brilliant. Can’t wait to read your review. 😊

      And thanks. 😊❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I love all of these villains! These are honestly some of my favorite ones too! Magneto has always been one of my favorite characters in the X-Men universe, he’s so complex. And I absolutely love Loki. I’ve loved him since I first watched Thor and loved him even more after reading Neil Gaiman’s Norse Mythology. Great list!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Loki is such an interesting character, isn’t he? I loved Gaiman’s spin and how vividly Loki’s cunning scheming got captured in his Norse Mythology. 🙂
      I think the complexity of Magneto is something that I enjoy as well. He’s not just ‘evil’… and that’s what’s interesting.
      Thanks for stopping by and thank you! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. 100% agree! 🙂 I’m currently reading ‘Into The Woods: How Stories Work and Why We Tell Them’. John Yorke analyses in it what makes a story a truly remarkable one and complex villains are definitely an emerging theme there. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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