Monday 28 June 2010

My personal top 10 anime villains

This list is designed to contain only those villains with no forms of redemption, so great characters like Greed, Viral and Vegeta were sadly off limits. Maybe one day I'll get round to doing a top 10 anti heroes list or something....

Still, without further ado;

10. Myotismon (Digimon Adventure)
Bent on killing the 8th Digidestined before he/she could become a threat to him, Myotismon broke free to the real world - taking children hostage and threatening to kill them if Gatomon (his once loyal minion who he tamed through) doesn't pick out the child. Then, if a battle with Angewomon wasn't enough to off him, he returns as VenomMyotismon and has to be taken out by 2 mega level digimon. And even that wasn't enough to kill him, as he would be resurrected in Digimon Adventure 02 as MaloMyotismon. Myotismon may not have been the most powerful villain in Digimon, but he sure was the most persistent.

Plus vampires were cool back then.

9. Cyrus (Pokemon)
Including a Pokemon character may seem like a bit of an odd choice, especially when its a character from long after the Pokemon anime had passed its sell-by date, but Team Galactic leader Cyrus was something the series had never really seen before - true evil. His plan to destroy the universe and create a new one just for himself made Pokemon watchable again and created a story arc that was thrilling from beginning to end. Oh, and someone 'died'. How often does that happen in Pokemon?

8. Director Kakuzawa (Elfen Lied)
He tortured children and wasn't afraid to admit it. Not only that, his main efforts were to replenish his Diclonius bloodline and gain the power of kings, wiping humanity of the face of the Earth in order for Diclonii to be the next stage in evolution. The Elfen Lied anime may not have covered the whole story, but it covered enough to see Kakuzawa have no contempt for anyone's life, whether they be human or Diclonius.

7. Kagato (Tenchi Muyo!)
Kagato may not have lasted very long in Tenchi, but his presence sure lasted throughout. Imprisoning his former mentor for five thousand years and pillaging the galaxy, Kagato has such little contempt for human life that he doesn't even find them worth killing. And he plays the pipe organ like a true badass.

6. Vicious (Cowboy Bebop)
I'm still pretty new to Cowboy Bebop, but I'm fairly sure this guy could get in the list on looks alone. But no, he has a hell of a personality to back it up. Smart, violent and the man who shattered Spike's life, Vicious is more than just your typical anime villain - and he helped make Bebop one hell of a viewing experience.

5. The Anti-Spiral (Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann)
Simple in design but highly effective, the Anti-Spiral are a race that halted evolution for fear of the destruction of the universe and won't hesitate to stop anyone who doesn't agree with them. But they won't just kill you, they'll make you see the futility of your efforts and leave you in ultimate despair. The Anti-Spiral was pretty badass in the series, but be sure to watch the second Gurren Lagann movie to see it really shine.

4. Baron Ashura (Shin Mazinger Shougeki! Z Hen)
Ignoring the lesser versions of the character that appeared in the original Mazinger Z and Mazinkaiser, this is the most fully fleshed version of Ashura and therefore the best in my eyes. As a former priest (and priestess) of an ancient civilisation, it was revealed in the series that Ashura had been deformed and manipulated by Dr Hell to serve as his subordinate. Thirsty for revenge - it seemed as through Ashura had secretly sided with the heroes. But no. After offing Dr Hell, Ashura revealed his real plan - by getting rid of Dr Hell and then sacrificing himself Ashura unleashed the Mycene Empire back on the Earth and creates one of the greatest cliffhanger endings in anime. Not bad at all.

3. Grace O'Connor (Macross Frontier)
When I first watched Macross Frontier, Grace was the last person I was expecting to be villain of the series. What initially seemed like a calm and gentle manager of an intergalactic idol gave way to a cyborg who has no hesitation to use a weapon called a 'Dimension Eater' and merge with the Queen of an entire species of sentient aliens in a quest for power and knowledge. The whole sequence where she explains to Sheryl that she injected her with the fatal V-type virus and made Sheryl an idol just for her purposes shows how evil and manipulative she could be.

2. Cell (Dragonball Z)
This guy was the original anime super villain for me. Sure Vegeta was cooler, but he went on to become an anti-hero. This guy was arrogant and simply bad to the bone. An artificial life form created from the cells of some of the most powerful warriors, Cell was the ultimate fighter.

He's also the only villain in the series to successfully off Goku. How's that for effective?

1. Pride (Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood)
With FMA:B taking it's story from the manga, there was quite a bit of Homunculus shifting from the original series. Gone were the first series' Wrath and Sloth, Fuhrer King Bradley (Pride in the first series) went on the become Wrath and Sloth was an entirely new hulking brute. The only one left was Pride - the most powerful of the Homunculi. And how much more evil could you get than making Pride a child. Whatever Pride was doing, he looked evil, and being made of shadows with multiple giant eyes only served to make Pride even better. Pretty much every character was made better in Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, but as far as villains go, Pride just can't be beaten.

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