Posted by: ronpurtee | February 27, 2008

Top 5 Comic Villains Ever (as dictated by Ron to an executive assistant)

So I was deep in conversation with my brother yesterday and we were naming out Top 5 villains in the comic world. Now, at first I was going to do this in no particular order, but then I decided against that. So here they are, the Top 5 Villains of the World of Comics, well, as I see it anyway…

1.The Joker.

The Joker first appeared in Batman #1 in the Spring of 1940. He was unlike any other villain I had ever seen. He’s a violent sociopath who murders people and commits crimes for his own amusement. He has been responsible for numerous tragedies in Batman’s life, including the paralysis of Barbara Gordon (Batgirl/Oracle) and the murders of Jason Todd (the second Robin) and Jim Gordon’s second wife Sarah Essen.

If you aren’t familiar with the death of Sarah Essen, let me re-tell the tale of one of the Joker’s more, disturbing kills…

The Joker had her catch an infant he was holding, and to prevent her leaking his location shot her in the head while her hands were full. Strangely, the Joker seemed to take no pleasure in this act, walking away with a sour frown as opposed to his usual maniacal grin before surrendering himself to the police. In retaliation, Gordon shot Joker in the leg. The Joker bawled over his wound and the fact that he would never walk again, until he “got the joke”. A reference to Joker’s shooting of Gordon’s daughter, Barbara in The Killing Joke

Favorite Quote: “I did it! I finally killed Batman! In front of a bunch of vulnerable, disabled kids!!!! Now get me Santa Claus!”


Darkseid was created by Jack Kirby as part of the Fourth World series of comics.
His first appearance was in Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen #134 in November of 1970.

Darkseid is the ruler of the planet Apokolips, a post he obtained after assassinating his mother. He is obsessed with finding the Anti-Life Equation in order to use it to rule the universe. This goal also includes conquering his rival planet, New Genesis.

The man is just cold terror. Plain and simple. If he can’t have something that he wants, he destroys it, and Earth seems to forever be on his list. Every time he tries, Superman is there to stop him – but barely.

Some of Darkseid’s best moments have been in Superman: The Animated Series and Justice League Unlimited. To see one of those brutal fights in cartoon history, check out the series finale of Superman: TAS, Darkseid and Superman go toe to toe in a battle to end all battles, or so it would seem.

Favorite Quote: “Don’t leave us yet, Kal-El. I want you to see your adopted homeworld bow down before me. Only then will I allow you death’s sweet release.”

3. Doctor Doom

Doctor Victor Von Doom was created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, and made his first debut in Fantastic Four #5 (July 1962).

Doom is born a gypsy, and his father’s wrongful death and discovery that his mother was a witch lead to the youth becoming a brillant, if arrogant scientist. After a failed experiment leaves his face disfigured, Doom retreated to Tibet, where he cast his distinctive armor and mask and set out to dominate the world. While he does not possess superpowers, Doom uses his intellect and cunning to create powerful weapons and lethal traps.

Doom seems to forever be in a struggle with the leader of the Fantastic Four, Mr Fantastic, Reed Richards. It has seemingly consumed his life. While a noble as the leader of the European country of Latveria, whenever he makes a statement to the effect of something being beneath him, it almost seems like he is saying that it has nothing to do with his quest to destroy Richards, so he doesn’t care.

Favorite Quote: “Pain? Pain is like love…like compassion! It is a thing only for lesser men. What is pain to Doom?”


Sinestro was created by John Broome and Gil Kane and made his first appearance in Green Lantern (vol. 2) #7 (July – August 1961).

Why did he make the list when he is seemingly such an inferior villain? Simple. On his home planet he was called a murderer and his legacy was spit upon. Who was the cause of that? Why the best super hero on the entire planet, a Green Lantern by the name of Hal Jordan. So what did Sinestro do? He returned the favor. He unleashed the yellow impurity in the Green Lantern’s ring, Parallax, thus instilling fear into the one hero in the universe without it. He then destroys the Green Lantern Corps and tries to re-write time. Seems fair, right? I know that’s what I do to people when they take the good parking spot, or when my brother takes the last Hot Pocket.

Favorite Quote: “The remaining members of my Corps have retreated, but they will continue to spread fear. They will tell tales of the Green Lantern Corps. They will tell the story of how you used your power rings to kill to protect a backwater, nothing planet called Earth. Tell me, Jordan. Look me in my eyes and tell me, that you don’t agree with this law?”


He made his first appearance was (as well as the X-Men’s) in X-Men #1 (Sept 1963)
And has been their primary antagonist ever since.

Magneto is depicted as one of the most powerful mutants, possessing the ability to to generate and control magnetism. A Jewish Holocaust survivor, his actions are driven by the purpose of protecting the mutant race from suffering a similar fate. Characterizations of Magneto have varied through the years, from supervillain to anti-hero to even hero, but he is most often shown as an uncompromising militant and has engaged in acts of terrorism when he felt it was for the benefit of mutantkind.

One of Magneto’s most memorable moments came when battling the X-Men. During the battle, he ripped the adamantium from Wolverine’s bones, enraging Xavier, who in turn wiped his mind. That whole thing lead to Onslaught (a mutant who has to carry a wallet that reads BMF) and a whole universe of comic book characters having to suffer origin changes, and Rob Liefeld with a job. That, we know is never a good thing.

Favorite Quote: “How bright the promise was in summer, how full of hope the dream. How quickly it turned to ash.”

Now mind you, this is all my opinion, and is subject to scrutiny. This could all also change if Doomie and Mags turn out to be Skrulls. I swear, that’s really gonna piss me off this summer.

What are YOUR Top 5 villains? Lay it on me slick.


  1. This is a great list, although if I crafted my Top 5 Comic Book Villain list, it would look something like this:

    1. The Joker
    2. Scarecrow
    3. Doctor Octopus
    4. Darkseid
    5. Magneto

  2. Ok, Im going to need you to show your work on Drs Crane and Octavious

  3. Okay, so I have a fascination with genuis mad scientists hellbent on proving they are the most brilliant, and therefore powerful, men on Earth. That’s why Gaius Baltar pwns.

    Scarecrow — he uses psychotropic drugs to peform fear experiments on people. And he’s not even in the CIA!

    Doc Oc — The dude built robotic arms. I want robotic arms. Does anybody NOT want robotic arms??! And he didn’t stop with just 2 — no, he made four of them! Plus, he looks like Roy Orbison.

  4. Nice list Ron.

    So many Villains, any list would be subjective at best, I have to say that if I were doing a Top Five of Villains, I would have to list Lex Luthor in that Top five, I mean how diabolical was this guy…he was the head cheese for four years afterall, and came out smelling like a rose…or limburger…yeah, that’s the ticket!


  5. Rainbow Raider FTW!

    Roy Bivolo was a gifted painter as a child… but for one critical problem: he was completely color-blind. As a result, his paintings looked horribly clashing to the rest of the world, and he was never able to pursue his talent. His father, an optometrist with as much genius for optics as his son had for painting, swore he’d find a cure, but failing health prevented him from fulfilling his promise. What he did manage to develop were a pair of goggles that granted the wearer color-based powers—they could launch colored beams of force on which the wearer could ride through the air, produce emotions in people according to the mood associated with each color, and more. Roy’s father presented him with the perfected goggles on his deathbed.

    Bitter at the world for denying him his own gift and denying him the ability to truly appreciate the master works of art, he turned to crime as the Rainbow Raider, stealing great works and declaring that if he could not appreciate them, then neither should anyone else.

  6. I am trying to track down any information on that joker painting, I have an original I acquired in 1995 and I can’t find anything about it…

  7. My list:

    1. The Joker
    2. The Red Skull
    3. Darkseid
    4. Hulk (from Marvel Zombies)
    5. Thanos

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