Friday, January 20, 2012

My Top 10 Favorite Star Wars Villains (Part 2 of my Top 30 Favorite Star Wars Characters)


I’ve often considered the Star Wars series to have some of the most memorable characters of all time, and I'm at the half way point in counting down my top 30 favorites. Last time I counted down my 10 favorite Star Wars girls, now it's time to highlight the villains. There are no limits as to who can be on this countdown, it’s open to any character from the Star Wars franchise, whether it’s a movie, TV show, video game or novel. My only condition is that I wont include any female villains, sense I already disused them last time. So with that said, here are my personal top 10 favorite villains from the Star Wars universe.     



#10 Jango Fett 


While this armored bounty hunter doesn’t reach the same heights as Boba Fett, he at least functioned as more of a character in the plot of the movie, which is definitely a plus, and something that even his predecessor lacked. Plus, he has some of the best action scenes in the series, proving to hold his own against a Jedi master in a heated battle. Debuting in “Star Wars 2: Attack of the Clones”, Jango Fett proved once again that the bounty hunters are some of the best villains that Star Wars has to offer, and that extra bit of coolness always goes a long way.


Jango Fett has been featured in ... 


"Star Wars 2: Attack of the Clones" (Movie) - A Main Villain 
"Star Wars: The Clone Wars" (TV Series) - (Visual Reference) (2 Episodes)










#9 The Grand Inquisitor


Standing tall at number nine on my list is The Grand Inquisitor, who just recently made his debut as a main antagonist of the new TV series “Star Wars Rebels”. With the evil Empire securing its grip on the galaxy, Darth Vader dispatches the Inquisitor as his personal assassin to hunt down and eliminate all surviving children of the force, and he’s apparently quiet effective at getting his point across. This character is awesome right off the bat, especially when voiced by Jason Isaacs, the same talent who played Lucius Malfoy from the Harry Potter series, you just can’t go wrong there. As you’d expect, Jason Isaacs supplies the character with a deliciously evil performance, making every one of his actions seem disgustingly wicked. Armed with a fancy duel light saber and vast knowledge of the Jedi order, The Inquisitor is a dangerous threat and an awesome villain that shouldn’t be glanced over.   


The Grand Inquisitor has been featured in ... 



"Star Wars Rebels" (TV Series) - A Lead Reoccurring Villain (11 Episodes) 











#8 Grand Admiral Thrawn


After the conclusion of the original Star Wars trilogy, the very first novels of the expanded universe known as “The Thrawn Trilogy” came into play. The titular Grand Admiral Thrawn was the main antagonist of these books, and has sense become one of the most beloved characters in the expanded universe. I was first introduced to him as one of the main antagonists of the TV series “Star Wars Rebels”, but after words I dug up every comic and video game associated with the character. Unlike other villains in the Star Wars universe, Thrawn has a certain respect for both his adversaries and peers. He loves art, he isn’t driven by his ego, and while he’s ruthless, his actions are very unique, yet devastating. This isn’t a villain who lashes out and attacks in full force, he’s more calculated, strategic, and his greatest weapon is his intelligence. Despite being the more laid back and chill adversary, he still has a commanding presence, and will always be a fan favorite of the expanded universe.        


Grand Admiral Thrawn has been featured in ... 



"Star Wars Rebels" (TV Series) - A Lead Reoccurring Villain (8 Episodes)  












#7 Kylo Ren (from the movies) and Darth Caedus (from the Novels)


Weather your reading the "Legacy" book series, or watching the new movies, it's the conflicts between Han Solo and his son turned evil that I find to be one of the most intriguing of the series. In the novels he's known as Darth Caedus, while in the most recent movie "The Force Awakens", he's called Kylo Ren. For the sake of his countdown, I'll focus on Kylo Ren from the movies, even though the novels portrayal of the character is still just as captivating. Honestly, I think Kylo Ren’s story was set up better in "The Force Awakens" then even Darth Vader’s was in the original movie. Right from the beginning we see Kylo Ren strutting confidently with his force powers, stopping a lazar blast in mid air, wearing a creepy mask with a menacing voice, and we think to ourselves "Ok, this is the New Darth Vader: confident, Evil, and in charge". But as the movie goes on, we discover just how vulnerable and emotional this character really is. Every action he takes is meant to impress the first order and prove to himself that he is the new Darth Vader, but this guy can take his mask off at will, revealing a perfectly healthy face underneath. That's when it hits us, Kylo Ren is not the new Darth Vader at all, he's just an impressionable youth who wants to believe he is. There’s a great moment when he laments to the burned helmet of Darth Vader, a symbol of his grandfather, that he is tempted by the light, he is in conflict, and he is struggling just as any young person does. It makes Kylo Ren feel like a very human villain, and not just another cool looking bad guy.   


The Kylo Ren has been featured in ... 



"Star Wars: The Force Awakens" (Movie) - The Lead Antagonist  












#6 Jabba the Hutt


Next on my list is the most disgusting villain in the galaxy, the massive space slug and rules his own criminal empire with an iron fist. Jabba the Hutt made his first appearance as an antagonist in “Star Wars 6: Return of the Jedi”, and has sense made appearances in other Star Wars movies and TV shows. This is a different kind of villain, he doesn’t have any fighting capabilities and doesn’t look like much of a threat on the surface, but he’s always large and in charge when confronted by his enemies. It’s the way he rules and dominates that makes him a threat to our hero’s. He’s a fun gross out villain and he’s got one of the greatest evil chuckles I’ve ever heard.


Jabba the Hutt has been featured in ...



"Star Wars 4: A New Hope" (Movie) - Supporting Villain  
"Star Wars 6: Return of the Jedi" (Movie) - A Main Villain  
"Star Wars 1: The Phantom Menace" (Movie) - Cameo 
"Star Wars: The Clone Wars" (Movie) - A Main Villain
"Star Wars: The Clone Wars" (TV Series) - Minor Reoccurring Villain (4 Episodes)







#5 The Emperor 


Emperor Palpatine has been the big threat in just about every Star Wars movie, he’s appeared countless times in TV shows, other spin offs and he’s still the greatest threat the galaxy ever faced. I’m not sure how to adequately describe a perfect movie villain, but I certainly know it when I see it, and personally, I think that Ian MacDiarmid’s performance as The Emperor is one of the greatest villain performances of all time, right up there with Bela Lugosi as Dracula. He just has this really evil presence and everything he says in that quiet voice of his just gives me chills. There’s a lot of mystery to this character, we don’t know that much about him and I love it when there’s a mystique to a villain, it just makes them so much more interesting. He’s also very calm and collected, like he’s in complete control of the game and that just makes him feel all the more threatening. 


The Emperor has been featured in ... 


"Star Wars 5: The Empire Strikes Back" (Movie) - Supporting Villain  
"Star Wars 6: Return of the Jedi" (Movie) - A Main Villain 
"Star Wars 1: The Phantom Menace" (Movie) - Supporting Villain 
"Star Wars 2: Attack of the Clones" (Movie) - Cameo 
"Star Wars: Clone Wars" (TV Mini Series) - Reoccurring Cameo's (Seasons 1-2) 
"Star Wars 3: Revenge of the Sith" (Movie) - The Lead Antagonist  
"Star Wars: The Clone Wars" (Movie) - Cameo
"Star Wars: The Clone Wars" (TV Series) - A Main Reoccurring Villain (17 Episodes)
"Star Wars Rebels" (TV Series) - Cameo (1 Episode) (Pending)




#4 Boba Fett



Good old Boba Fett, ever sense he first appeared in “The Star Wars Holiday Special”, this mysterious masked bounty hunter has become one of the biggest cult icons of all the Star Wars characters, and has helmed countless video games, comic books and novels. Even though he did little as a villain in the actual movies, he still left an impact and has had a bigger story that’s expanded through different TV spin offs and graphic novels. Not even George Lucas himself could have predicted the cult fandom that would grow with Boba Fett, who's arguably one of the greatest supporting villains of all time. 


Boba Fett has been featured in ...



"Star Wars 4: A New Hope" (Movie) - Cameo
"The Star Wars Holiday Special" (TV Movie) - The Lead Antagonist
"Star Wars 5: The Empire Strikes Back" (Movie) - A Main Villain  
"Star Wars 6: Return of the Jedi" (Movie) - Supporting Villain
"Star Wars Droids" (TV Series) - Guest Villain (1 Episode) 
"Star Wars 2: Attack of the Clones" (Movie) - Supporting Villain
"Star Wars: The Clone Wars" (TV Series) - Minor Reoccurring Villain (5 Episodes)







#3 Darth Maul


Redeeming himself as one of the greatest villains in the Star Wars cannon is Darth Maul, a villain with a face that would be fitting for your darkest nightmares. Maul made his first appearance in the 1999 motion picture “Star Wars 1: The Phantom Menace”, and while he initially got many people excited, he unfortunately got cut short before he could leave a real impact. Thankfully, the 2008 TV series “Star Wars: The Clone Wars” brought him back from the dead, and gave him the chance to shine as the menacing villain that he always meant to be. Voice actor Samuel Witwer supplies Maul with a deeply chilling voice, and a lot of class. His design is fantastic and it was just a real treat to finally see what this bad boy is made of. This portrayal of the character was so successful that the character is finally getting his own graphic novels and a more fleshed out back story in the expanded universe. He might have been taken from the movies before his time, but his life continues to grow in all the spin offs, TV shows, Star Wars literature and he’s found a place among my personal favorite villains that the series has ever created. 


Darth Maul has been featured in ...



"Star Wars 1: The Phantom Menace" (Movie) - The Lead Antagonist  
"Star Wars: The Clone Wars" (TV Series) - Reoccurring Villain (7 Episodes)
"Star Wars Rebels" (TV Series) - Reoccurring Villain (5 Episodes) (Pending)












#2 Cad Bane


Let’s make this list a bit more interesting, it just wouldn’t be complete without the galaxy’s greatest and coolest bounty hunter. That’s right, Boba Fett is only second rate in comparison to Cad Bane. Premiering in the TV series “Star Wars: The Clone Wars”, Cad Bane was the surprise villain that no one saw coming, and completely stole the show. When it comes to villains in the Star Wars universe, they usually come off as menacing and powerful but they never seem to be having fun with what they do. In the case of Cade Bane, he loves every second of what he does, he always has that wicked smirk, always making remarks with sick sense of hummer, and is always in control of every situation he’s in. He fights dirty and can hold his own against not just one but two Jedi masters in hand to hand combat. Even when apprehended, he still acts cool and collected like he’s got a plan up his sleeve. His voice is downright chilling, and I just love his laidback, and sinister personality, it’s just awesome. I especially love his overall look and design which was based off of Lee Van Cleef AKA “Angel Eye’s” from “The Good the Bad and the Ugly”, can’t go wrong there. 


Cad Bane has been featured in ... 



"Star Wars: The Clone Wars" (TV Series) - A Main Reoccurring Villain (10 Episodes)



      





Before I reveal my #1 pick, here are some Honorable Mentions...


Count Dooku

Governor Tarkin

Hondo 

The Son

Agent Kallus


                                           

#1 Darth Vader 


Well you didn’t expect any other character from this series to be here on this spot, did yah. Now when I say Darth Vader is my favorite villain, I mean a pinch more than just that, he’s also my absolute favorite character in the series. Darth Vader is often regarded as one of the greatest (if not the greatest) villains ever in film and for a good reason. Right from the first movie, he’s intimidating and a powerful enemy, with one of the sharpest designs I’ve ever seen. That awesome helmet, long cape, red lightsaber and the voice of James Earl Jones, it’s just perfect. Throw in a complex story of him going from a tragic fallen hero, too evil galactic conqueror and then in the end he becomes a hero again, and you got yourself an A+ bad guy. This was the first time I ever found myself caring for a villain, and with that bit of emotional depth and back story mixed with his awesome look and design, that’s the perfect ingredients for one of Hollywood’s best villains and my personal favorite character from the Star Wars series.


Darth Vader has been featured in ...


"Star Wars 4: A New Hope" (Movie) - The Lead Antagonist 
"The Star Wars Holiday Special" (TV Movie) - Cameo 
"Star Wars 5: The Empire Strikes Back" (Movie) - The Lead Antagonist 
"Star Wars 6: Return of the Jedi" (Movie) - The Lead Antagonist  
"Star Wars 3: Revenge of the Sith" (Movie) - A Main Villain 
"Star Wars: The Clone Wars" (TV Series) - (Visual Reference) (1 Episode)
"Star Wars Rebels" (TV Series) - A Lead Reoccurring Villain (6 Episodes) (Pending)
"Star Wars: The Force Awakens" (Movie) - (Visual Reference)
"Rouge One: A Star Wars Story" (Movie) - Supporting Villain



To Be Continued ...


        

2 comments:

  1. Another person who loves Darth Vader, I too find it to be the popular character of the franchise, he's the most popular baddest of the baddies in the movie features.

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