crime shows and movies The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers  

Mark Holmes
Originally by
50.7k votes 5.2k voters 255.3k views 77 items Embed

List Rules 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.
list ordered by

1
2,296 410
Hannibal Lecter is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Hannibal Lecter The Silence of the Lambs, Hannibal

15 Terrifying Real-Life Kids That Belong in a Horror Movie The Top Animated Sex Symbols

2
1,193 638
Norman Bates is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Norman Bates Psycho

3
1,919 684
Dexter Morgan is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Dexter Morgan Dexter

4
1,423 565
Patrick Bateman is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Patrick Bateman American Psycho

5
1,104 206
Joker is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
AmandaEkenlöw added Joker Batman: The Brave and the Bold, Batman: The Animated Series, Fight Batman Fight!

6
1,118 567
Freddy Krueger is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Freddy Krueger Nightmare on Elm Street

7
1,129 492
Michael Myers is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Michael Myers Halloween Universe

8
1,021 490
John Doe is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
John Doe Seven

9
900 509
Jason Voorhees is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Jason Voorhees Fridiay the 13th Universe

10
1,090 472
Buffalo Bill is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Buffalo Bill The Silence of the Lambs

11
945 540
Jigsaw Killer is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Jigsaw Killer Saw Universe

12
954 471
Pennywise the Dancing Clown is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers

13
821 530
Sweeney Todd is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Sweeney Todd Sweeney Todd, the Demon Barber of Fleet Street

14
795 433
Leatherface is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Leatherface The Texas Chainsaw Massacre

15
577 493
Mickey Knox is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Mickey Knox Natural Born Killer

10 Interviews With Serial Killers That Will Appall You Co-Stars Who Totally Hated Each Other

16
631 460
Annie Wilkes is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Benjamin2 added Annie Wilkes Misery

17
654 298
The Joker is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
graser20 added The Joker

18
615 498
Ghostface is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Ghostface Scream Universe

19
609 511
Charles Lee Ray is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Benjamin2 added Charles Lee Ray Child's Play Universe

20
409 500
Mallory Knox is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Mallory Knox Natural Born Killers

21
458 500
Candyman is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Candyman Candyman

22
422 442
Samara Morgan is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Samara Morgan The Ring

23
489 515
Arthur Mitchell is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers

24
426 494
Sylar is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Sylar Heroes, Heroes

25
326 549
Catherine Tramell is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Catherine Trammell Basic Instinct

26
407 393
Francis Dolarhyde is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Francis Dolarhyde Red Dragon

27
302 443
Tom Ripley is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Tom Ripley The Talented Mr. Ripley

28
354 445
Brian Moser is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
William Roberts added Brian Moser Dexter

29
258 200
Captain Spaulding is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Captain Spaulding House of 1000 Corpses, The Devil's Rejects

The Best Serial Killer Movies Celebrities Who Fell Into Homelessness

30
281 168
Tate Langdon is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
JaidenDalBello added Tate Langdon American Horror Story

31
161 246
Red John is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
joash2 added Red John

32
239 322
Slender Man is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Gokuisawsome added Slender Man

33
270 419
Joe Carroll is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Joe Carroll The Following

34
157 146
Light Yagami is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Travis MacPherson added Light Yagami Death Note, Death Note: Re-light: L's Successors, Death Note

35
223 381
Henry Lee Lucas is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Dismalhead added Henry Lee Lucas Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer

36
247 338
Mr. Earl Brooks is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
wiabux added Mr. Earl Brooks Mr. Brooks

37
174 219
Stu Macher is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Goopus added Stu Macher Scream

38
321 349
Bloody Face is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Bloody Face American Horror Story: Asylum

39
175 206
Billy Loomis is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Goopus added Billy Loomis Scream

40
112 383
Early Grayce is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
RobMeusel added Early Grayce Kalifornia

41
165 151
The Creeper is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
TimTima added The Creeper Jeepers Creepers, Jeepers Creepers 2, Jeepers Creepers 4

42
169 190
Firefly Family is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
CapoAssKickerMikey95 added Firefly Family House of 1000 Corpses, Devil's Rejects

43
122 134
Spike is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
dark wish added Spike Angel, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Buffyverse

The Most Beautiful Actresses Ever 15 People Who Were Found Living with Dead Bodies

44
89 264
Benjamin Linus is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
sheldonbhowe added Benjamin Linus Lost, Lost: Missing Pieces

45
192 177
Peter Griffin is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
CheckinaCoulibaly added Peter Griffin Family Guy, Family Guy Universe

46
197 176
Stewie Griffin is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
CheckinaCoulibaly added Stewie Griffin Family Guy, Family Guy Universe

47
120 196
Tiffany is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Benjamin2 added Tiffany Bride of Chucky, Seed of Chucky, Curse of Chucky - Bride Of Chucky & Seed Of Chucky

48
23 11
Carrie White is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Herr_Frau added Carrie White Carrie, Carrie, Carrie

49
110 197
Frank Breitkopf is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
Pepe2002 added Frank Breitkopf Criminal Minds

50
134 188
Hannah McKay is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Fictional Serial Killers
GlennSwan added Hannah McKay Dexter