Fiction The Best Fictional Characters Who Turn Evil  

Ranker Characters
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List Rules Vote up the characters who make bad look good.

There are thousands of villains in fiction, from television, books, comics, and film, each with their own unique motives and methods of madness. But it can be rare to see a character go from a hero to villain before your own eyes. They might start out as an innocent person, with the best of intentions, before transforming into a monster. What makes these fictional characters turn evil?

Sometimes they’re tempted by the power that comes from evil and darkness, like in the case of Anakin Skywalker, Peter Pettigrew, and Lex Luthor. Many of these villains had the best of intentions, but it only led to a place of evil, like in the case of "Breaking Bad" anti-hero Walter White.

A lot of the characters on this list began as close friends of the heroes of their stories. Buffy the Vampire Slayer saw both her boyfriend and best friend go from her allies to bitter enemies. Many of Shakespeare’s characters were corrupted by jealousy or thirst for power and end up committing extremely evil acts, as in the case of Macbeth and Iago.

This list features characters who weren’t born bad, but were made evil by unfortunate circumstances and their choices later in life.

 

1 241 VOTES

Macbeth is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Fictional Characters Who Turn Evil
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Macbeth is the title character of the William Shakespeare tragedy first published in 1606. He is a military hero until he is convinced to commit regicide to become the King of Scotland.

Appears In: Macbeth

Also Ranked

#7 on The All-Time Best Shakespeare Characters

#7 on The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

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2 208 VOTES

Iago is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Fictional Characters Who Turn Evil
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Iago is a character in William Shakespeare's "Othello." Iago was once a trusted adviser to Othello, but after failing to receive a promotion he turns on his former friend.

Appears In: Othello

Also Ranked

#2 on The All-Time Best Shakespeare Characters

#1 on The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

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3 236 VOTES

Michael Corleone is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Fictional Characters Who Turn Evil
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Michael Corleone is the main character of "The Godfather" series and he first appeared in Mario Puzo's novel "The Godfather." He was a WWII hero before taking over the "family business."

Appears In: The Godfather Saga, The Godfather Part II, The Godfather Part III, The Godfather, The Godfather

Also Ranked

#21 on The Most Likable Movie Antiheroes

#32 on The Best Movie Characters of All Time

#36 on Movie Tough Guys Without Super Powers or a Super Suit

#27 on The Greatest Fictional Bosses

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Jack Torrance is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Fictional Characters Who Turn Evil
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At the start of Stephen King's novel "The Shining," Jack Torrance is a writer and family man who takes a job as a hotel caretaker to make some extra money. By the end of the story, he is a murderous monster possessed with deadly thoughts.

Appears In: The Shining

Powers & Abilities: Telepathy

Also Ranked

#4 on The Greatest Movie Villains of All Time

#36 on The Best Movie Characters of All Time

#2 on The Greatest Possessed Characters in Film

#1 on The Greatest Novelist Characters in Film

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