The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers

Originally By 40k votes 4k voters 242k views 60 items tags f p @

List Criteria: Notable serial killers from movies and television.

Who are the best fictional serial killers of all time? These are serial killers featured in television shows and on film. To be clear, there is a difference between a serial killer and a mass murderer. A serial killer is one who kills individually, stalking a victim and murdering them in cold blood. Some of the most memorable movie and TV characters ever have been serial killers, so be sure to vote for the ones you liked the most -- and vote down any you didn't like. Also, feel free to re-rank this list any way you want, and add any notable fictional serial killers who are missing.

The creepiest film and TV serial killers often steal the show with their terrifyingly cool, chilling scenes. They manage to elude the good guys who are dutifully tracking them down, often for most of a movie or television show. Eventually, almost all of the fictional serial killers listed here are caught, but not before they leave behind horrifying reminders of their sick and twisted abilities. They are, quite often, some of the best movie villains of all time or the creepiest characters on television.

When you think of the "best" fictional serial murderers, who comes to mind instantly? Hannibal Lecter? That's certainly one of the most famous and memorable serial killers ever on film, thanks to Anthony Hopkins (who won an Academy Award for the role in 'Silence of the Lambs'). Or how about mommy-obsessed Norman Bates (Anthony Hopkins), the serial killer who scared the wits out of everyone in Alfred Hitchcock's 'Psycho'? There is no doubt that both of these characters are iconic, and among the most utterly terrifying figures in film. Both, interestingly enough, were brought to the small screen in 2013: Lecter in the NBC horror drama 'Hannibal' and Bates in A&E's drama 'Bates Motel.'

Are serial killers the new vampires now? Could be. One thing is certain: The fictional serial killers listed here are among the characters you absolutely, positively do not ever want knocking at your door.
Collection Photo: user uploaded image
  • 47 ReRanks
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  1. 1
    + 1,861
    - 319

    the people's #1 & most listed
    The Silence of the Lambs, Hannibal

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  2. 2
    + 980
    - 484

    often listed
    Psycho

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  3. 3
    + 1,540
    - 531


    Dexter

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  4. 4
    + 1,198
    - 439


    American Psycho

    ;
  5. 5
    + 651
    - 132

    added by AmandaEkenlöw
    Batman: The Brave and the Bold, Batman: The Animated Series, Fight Batman ...

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  6. 6
    + 882
    - 440


    Nightmare on Elm Street

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  7. 7
    + 875
    - 395


    Halloween Universe

    ;
  8. 8
    + 818
    - 382


    Seven

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  9. 9
    + 702
    - 406


    Fridiay the 13th Universe

    ;
  10. 10
    + 880
    - 378


    The Silence of the Lambs

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  11. 11
    + 751
    - 447


    Saw Universe

    ;
  12. 12
    + 649
    - 355


    The Texas Chainsaw Massacre

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  13. 13
    + 643
    - 429


    Sweeney Todd, the Demon Barber of Fleet Street

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  14. 14
    + 725
    - 406


    It

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  15. 15
    + 490
    - 402


    Natural Born Killer

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  16. 16
    + 525
    - 373

    added by Benjamin2
    Misery

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  17. 17
    + 501
    - 220

    ranked low on reranks & added by graser20

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  18. 18
    + 482
    - 406


    Scream Universe

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  19. 19
    + 487
    - 408

    added by Benjamin2
    Child's Play Universe

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  20. 20
    + 344
    - 403


    Natural Born Killers

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  21. 21
    + 376
    - 410


    Candyman

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  22. 22
    + 332
    - 361


    The Ring

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  23. 23
    + 398
    - 434


    Dexter

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  24. 24
    + 282
    - 467
    Catherine Trammell is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Catherine Trammell Basic Instinct

  25. 25
    + 345
    - 421


    Heroes, Heroes

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  26. 26
    + 341
    - 329


    Red Dragon

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  27. 27
    + 251
    - 371


    The Talented Mr. Ripley

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  28. 28
    + 293
    - 369

    added by WilliamMtx
    Dexter

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  29. 29
    + 185
    - 134

    ranked low on reranks
    House of 1000 Corpses, The Devil's Rejects

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  30. 30
    + 109
    - 181

    added by joash2

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  31. 31
    + 180
    - 237

    added by Gokuisawsome

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  32. 32
    + 218
    - 358


    The Following

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  33. 33
    + 187
    - 318
    Henry Lee Lucas is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers

    added by Dismalhead
    Henry Lee Lucas Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer

  34. 34
    + 168
    - 106
    Tate Langdon is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers

    ranked low on reranks & added by JaidenDalBello
    Tate Langdon American Horror Story

  35. 35
    + 214
    - 274

    added by wiabux
    Mr. Brooks

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  36. 36
    + 117
    - 147

    added by Goopus
    Scream

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  37. 37
    + 97
    - 310

    often listed & added by RobMeusel
    Kalifornia

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  38. 38
    + 249
    - 296


    American Horror Story: Asylum

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  39. 39
    + 84
    - 80

    added by Travis MacPherson
    Death Note, Death Note: Re-light: L's Successors, Death Note

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  40. 40
    + 114
    - 142

    added by Goopus
    Scream

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  41. 41
    + 118
    - 133
    Firefly Family is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers

    added by CapoAssKickerMikey95
    Firefly Family House of 1000 Corpses, Devil's Rejects

  42. 42
    + 61
    - 198

    often listed & added by sheldonbhowe
    Lost, Lost: Missing Pieces

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  43. 43
    + 85
    - 96

    added by TimTima
    Jeepers Creepers, Jeepers Creepers 2, Jeepers Creepers 4

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  44. 44
    + 134
    - 87

    ranked low on reranks & added by CheckinaCoulibaly
    Family Guy, Family Guy Universe

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  45. 45
    + 121
    - 96

    ranked low on reranks & added by CheckinaCoulibaly
    Family Guy, Family Guy Universe

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  46. 46
    + 86
    - 127

    added by GlennSwan
    Dexter

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  47. 47
    + 80
    - 120

    added by Benjamin2
    Bride of Chucky, Seed of Chucky, Curse of Chucky Bride Of Chucky & Seed Of Chucky

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  48. 48
    + 64
    - 145
    Frank Breitkopf is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers

    added by Pepe2002
    Frank Breitkopf Criminal Minds

  49. 49
    + 72
    - 174
    Jeff the Killer is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers

    added by ezioaditore088
    Jeff the Killer

  50. 50
    + 66
    - 101
    The Bone Collector is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers

    added by Benjamin2
    The Bone Collector

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