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Movie Villains Who Suffered A Fate Worse Than Death

Updated February 24, 2021 5.7k votes 993 voters 157.3k views14 items

List RulesVote up the villains who didn't technically die but REALLY got their comeuppance.

Whether you love to hate them or just straight-up hate them, movie villains have to be defeated to give a film a satisfying ending. While some bad guys are just tossed off a building or melted by the Ark of the Covenant, other baddies have to endure a fate that's worse than the painful bliss of nonexistence.

In some cases, the villains pass into the emptiness of the universe, not dead but not alive, and in other instances, they're simply driven insane by the knowledge that they've been truly and finally bested by their nemesis. And some bad guys are just turned into mutant dogs, which is a pretty nasty fate no matter how you look at it.

Which villains suffer the worst fate is a matter of opinion, which is why we need you to decide which one of these evil creeps was given a send-off that was worse than they actually deserved.

  • Carmine Falcone Is Trapped In Perpetual Terror In 'Batman Begins'
    Photo: Batman Begins / Warner Bros.

    At the onset of Batman Begins, Carmine Falcone is living large as a member of Gotham City's underworld, but like all villains of his stature, he wants more power. After going into business with Jonathan Crane and Ra's al Ghul, he helps them move fear toxin into Gotham for Ghul's plot to destroy the city.

    After Falcone is put in jail following a tussle with the Bat, he tries to blackmail Crane and ends up getting dosed with an insane amount of fear toxin. He's left in Arkham Asylum muttering "Scarecrow" over and over. There's no way to know if the toxin will ever wear off, which means that Falcone's going to spend the foreseeable future living in terror.

    Tough break?
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  • Helen Sharp And Madeline Ashton Live Forever As Dismembered Pieces In 'Death Becomes Her'
    Photo: Death Becomes Her / Universal Pictures

    In Death Becomes Her, there exists a magic potion with the ability to keep its user young forever. The potion turns people into their best-looking selves, but it also creates monsters who can fall apart and perish time and time again without ever really passing on. It essentially turns its users into living, breathing members of the undead.

    Helen Sharp waffles between protagonist and antagonist in this dark comedy, but once she and her frenemy Madeline are turned onto the potion, they'll stop at nothing to remain beautiful forever - including using spray paint and epoxy to fix themselves up whenever they fall apart.

    As the film ends, both women attend the funeral of an ex who lived a happy life, and after leaving the church, they trip down its stairs and fall apart. The women are left arguing about where they parked their car as their disembodied heads roll across the sidewalk.

    Tough break?
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  • Red Skull Gets Trapped On A Planet Alone Indefinitely In 'Avengers: Infinity War'
    Photo: Avengers: Infinity War / Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

    After spending much of his professional career lusting after the Space Stone, Red Skull is presumed dead after being sucked through a wormhole, but his fate was much worse. Rather than perish in the vastness of space, Red Skull is brought to Vormir, where he's given the job of guarding the Soul Stone.

    When the audience catches up with Skull in Avengers: Infinity War, he's been on Vormir for 70 years and is tortured with the knowledge that he can never attain the Soul Stone because he can't love anyone other than himself. He doesn't age; he doesn't perish - he just exists alone on the planet.

    After Thanos sacrifices Gamora to gain the stone, Red Skull is finally freed from his curse. It's not clear if he dissipates into the universe or is brought back to his guardianship of the stone once Tony Stark sacrifices himself to undo Thanos's snap.

    Tough break?
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  • The Riddler Is Stuck In Arkham Asylum, Believing He's Batman In 'Batman Forever'
    Photo: Batman Forever / Warner Bros.

    Batman has never been known to be especially kind to his rogues' gallery, but in Batman Forever, he dishes out his most hellacious punishment to the Riddler of all people. Throughout the film, the Riddler goes out of his way to ruin the Dark Knight's life, but that's just what the villains of Gotham do (that and wear thematic outfits).

    After a fight against Riddler and Two-Face on Claw Island, Two-Face is apprehended by the authorities, but Riddler is hooked up to a giant brainwave receiver that shoves all of the knowledge of Gotham City into his frontal lobe. As he is wont to do, Batman destroys the brainwave machine, but the malfunctioning creation zaps the Riddler and turns his mind to mush.

    Following his defeat on Claw Island, Riddler is doomed to spend the rest of his life in Arkham Asylum living out the fantasy that he's Batman. Kept alive by the staff at Arkham, there's no telling how long Riddler will spend carrying on as Batman, going on adventures from the privacy of his padded cell.

    Tough break?
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