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The Most Memorable Sociopaths In TV History

Updated January 15, 2021 1.4k votes 194 voters 2.6k views30 items

List RulesVote up your favorite narcissistic, charming, and/or downright evil TV sociopaths.

Get ready to feel manipulated as we rank the greatest and most memorable sociopaths in TV history. Sociopathic characters make for some of the most interesting TV you’ll ever see. They can be misanthropes, misogynists, homicidal maniacs, or all of the above!  

From Hannibal Lecter (Hannibal) to Dennis Reynolds (It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia), the best sociopaths on TV are usually rude, conniving, and self-centered - which is probably what makes them so interesting! Bad characters make for great TV, and these are some of the worst and most egotistical characters to ever grace the small screen. But while some of the characters on this list of TV sociopaths are legitimately evil, others are just really, really vain. Which of these charming TV sociopaths is your favorite? Some of the scariest sociopaths on TV include twisted, little king Joffrey Baratheon of Game of Thrones and the ruthless Francis Underwood on House of Cards.

Vote up the greatest sociopaths on TV - not because they want you to, but because YOU want to! Share this list of TV characters who are sociopaths with your friends, and add any characters you think are missing.

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  • Dexter Morgan1
    78
    25

    ActorMichael C. Hall

    Played by: Michael C. Hall

    Memorable quote: "Monsters don't get to live happily ever after."

  • Hannibal Lecter2
    66
    19

    Hannibal Lecter

    Hannibal, AFI's 100 Years...100 Heroes & Villains

    ActorMads Mikkelsen, Anthony Hopkins

    Played by: Mads Mikkelsen

    Memorable quote: "I have let you know me, see me. I gave you a rare gift, but you didn't want it."

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  • Sherlock Holmes3
    56
    17

    Sherlock Holmes

    The Hound of the Baskervilles, Sherlock

    ActorJeremy Brett, John Cleese, Jonny Lee Miller, Tom Baker, Benedict Cumberbatch

    Played by: Benedict Cumberbatch

    Memorable quote: "I'm not a psychopath, Anderson. I'm a high-functioning sociopath. Do your research."

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  • Moriarty4
    55
    21

    Moriarty

    Sherlock

    Played by: Andrew Scott

    Memorable quote: "Every fairy tale needs a good old-fashioned villain."

  • Tate Langdon5
    36
    11

    Tate Langdon

    American Horror Story

    ActorEvan Peters

    Played by: Evan Peters

    Memorable quote: " I… hated high school. So I’d come here and I’d look out at this vast, limitless expanse. Then it’s like, that’s your life, man. You can do anything, could be anything. Screw high school. That’s… it’s just a blip in your timeline."

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  • Dennis Reynolds6
    56
    33

    Dennis Reynolds

    It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia

    ActorGlenn Howerton

    Played by: Glenn Howerton

    Memorable quote: "Hi. I'm a recovering crack head. This is my retarded sister that I take care of. I'd like some welfare, please."

  • Villanelle7
    39
    19

    Villanelle

    Killing Eve

    Played by: Jodie Comer

    Memorable quote: "You look like someone stuck a mustache on some fudge."

  • Joffrey Baratheon8
    47
    32

    Joffrey Baratheon

    Game of Thrones

    ActorJack Gleeson

    Played by: Jack Gleeson

    Memorable quote: "They say Stannis never smiles. I'll give him a Red smile, from ear to ear."

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  • Sideshow Bob9
    38
    22

    Sideshow Bob

    The Simpsons

    Played by: Kelsey Grammer

    Memorable quote: "That's right, dear. Enjoy your rest. The wedding was very tough on you, and the honeymoon is going to be... murder."

  • The Governor10
    34
    21

    The Governor

    The Walking Dead

    ActorDavid Morrissey

    Played by: David Morrissey

    Memorable quote: "In this life now, you kill or you die. Or you die and you kill."

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  • Dr. Gregory House11

    ActorHugh Laurie

    Played by: Hugh Laurie

    Memorable quote: "There’s no ‘I’ in team. There’s a ‘me’ though, if you jumble it up."

    More Dr. Gregory House 

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  • Francis Underwood12
    31
    20

    Francis Underwood

    House of Cards

    ActorKevin Spacey

    Played by: Kevin Spacey

    Memorable quote: "Shake with your right hand, but hold a rock in your left."

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  • Norman Bates13
    27
    16

    Norman Bates

    Bates Motel

    ActorFreddie Highmore

    Played by: Freddie Highmore

    Memorable quote: "I'm afraid of you and I love you, and that's a bad combination."

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  • Lorne Malvo14
    29
    17

    ActorBilly Bob Thornton

    Played by: Billy Bob Thornton

    Memorable quote: "Because some roads you shouldn’t go down. Because maps used to say, 'There be dragons here.' Now they don’t. But that don’t mean the dragons aren’t there."

  • Don Draper15
    28
    22

    Don Draper

    Mad Men

    ActorJon Hamm

    Played by: Jon Hamm

    Memorable quote: "It's your life. You don't know how long it's gonna last, but you know it doesn't end well. You've gotta move forward ... as soon as you can figure out what that means."

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  • Tony Soprano16
    2
    0

    Tony Soprano

    The Sopranos

    ActorJames Gandolfini

    More Tony Soprano 

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  • Purple Man17
    20
    16

    Purple Man

    Jessica Jones

    Played by: David Tennant

    Memorable quote: "Children should be seen and not heard. Or better still, not seen and not heard. Get into that closet!"

  • Ramsay Snow18
    17
    14

    Ramsay Snow

    Game of Thrones

    ActorIwan Rheon

    Played by: Iwan Rheon

    Memorable quote: "If you think this has a happy ending, you haven't been paying attention."

    More 

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  • Petyr Baelish19
    16
    17

    Petyr Baelish

    Game of Thrones

    ActorAidan Gillen

    Played by: Aidan Gillen

    Memorable quote: "Chaos isn’t a pit. Chaos is a ladder. Many who try to climb it fail and never get to try again. The fall breaks them. And some, are given a chance to climb. They refuse, they cling to the realm or the gods or love. Illusions. Only the ladder is real. The climb is all there is."

  • Ralph Cifaretto20
    16
    17

    Ralph Cifaretto

    The Sopranos

    ActorJoe Pantoliano

    Played by: Joe Pantoliano

    Memorable quote: "Hey, if it's a boy, we'll name him after me. If it's a girl, we'll name it Tracee after you... that way she could grow up to be a c*ck suckin' slob just like her mother."

  • Punisher21
    16
    19

    Punisher

    The Punisher, Daredevil

    Played by: Jon Bernthal

    Memorable quote: "There are worse things than dying, Bill. I wake up most mornings and I want it. I hope for it."

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  • Paul Spector22
    8
    8

    Paul Spector

    The Fall

    Played by: Jamie Dornan

    Memorable quote: "No one knows what's going on in someone else's mind. And life would be intolerable if we did."

  • Zoom23
    19
    25

    Zoom

    The Flash

    Played by: Teddy Sears, Tony Todd

    Memorable quote: "Look at your hero. This man is no god. He is nothing!"

  • Andrew Cunanan24
    17
    24

    Andrew Cunanan

    The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story

    ActorDarren Criss

    Played by: Darren Criss

    Memorable quote: "He proposed to me. Didn't work out, but we're still friends."

  • Ren Höek25
    7
    10

    Ren Höek

    The Ren and Stimpy Show, Ren and Stimpy: Adult Party Cartoon

    ActorBilly West, John Kricfalusi