Thursday, July 26, 2007
Booking Through Thursday: Best Moustache-Twirling
Who’s the worst fictional villain you can think of? As in, the one you hate the most, find the most evil, are happiest to see defeated? Not the cardboard, two-dimensional variety, but the most deliciously-written, most entertaining, best villain? Not necessarily the most “evil,” so much as the best-conceived on the part of the author…oh, you know what I mean!
I am finding that this is not such an easy question to answer. I read a lot of books with bad guys but rarely do they stand out--at least not at this moment when I most want to remember them. The villians that do catch my fancy are the ones that while evil, have also earned my respect. The authors have created them in such a way that brings them to life, make me feel for them, and despise them all at the same time. The first two are the more obvious ones, and I would not be surprised to see them on quite a few lists.
Hannibal Lecter from The Silence of the Lambs by Thomas Harris. Hannibal is not only one of the most brillant fictional serial killers but frightening as hell. This is not a man I would want roaming the streets.
Another character who comes to mind is Dexter Morgan from the Jeff Lindsay series. Dexter is a blood spatter pattern expert who sidelines as a serial killer. He is a charming character, and it is easy to forget he is not such a good guy when he only kills human predators who kill and harm innocent people. It never fails that when I start feeling too much of a connection to Dexter, the author, makes sure to remind me just how cold blooded the hero of the novel truly is.
Finally there is the Leanansidhe, Harry Dresden's faerie godmother from Jim Butcher's The Dresden Files. Although evil is not the word that comes to mind when I think of this character, Lea certainly is not one I look forward to Harry having to deal with when he gets in a tight spot. She is cunning to say the least, and even though she seems to care about Harry on some level, her intentions are rarely without a cost.
**While I have seen the movie, The Silence of the Lambs, I have not seen beyond the first television episodes for both The Dresden Files (SciFi) and Dexter (Showtime). Someday perhaps. Just not today.**
Don’t forget to leave a link to your actual response (so people don’t have to go searching for it) in the comments—or if you prefer, leave your answers in the comments themselves!