With over 50 books, Stephen King is arguably the most prolific writer of horror fiction in history. While I wait to read his latest book ‘The Outsider’, here’s a few of his best or worst, as the case may be, villains.
Stephen King has a brilliantly twisted mind…
Long time fans, aka constant readers of Stephen King, will know that in King’s mind even the most seemingly non-threatening thing can be a villain. From the family pet, a religion of children or even something inanimate like a hotel or 1958 Plymouth Fury can be evil. What follows is a handful of King’s best or worst villains, depending on your point of view.
5. Annie Wilkes (Misery)
Sometimes, as fans, we forget our favorite actors/writers are people too. So when they make a decision we don’t agree with about characters we’ve come to love, some can go a little crazy. Thankfully most of us don’t go as far as Paul Sheldon’s #1 fan Annie Wilkes. If you’re only familiar with the character from Kathy Bates’ brilliant portrayal in the film, you haven’t seen anything yet. Annie is much crazier and violent in the book.
4. Leland Gaunt (Needful Things)
What would you do to acquire your heart’s desire at a rock bottom price? If you absolutely need it, Leland Gaunt has it. Anything from a coveted Sandy Koufax (Babe Ruth in the film) card or a piece of Noah’s Ark. It can be yours for a small monetary price — and your soul. Not to mention the very town you live in.
3. Isaac/He Who Walks Behind The Rows (Children of the Corn)
And a child shall lead them. While it’s unknown if the boy preacher, Isaac, started the cult like following of “He Who Walks Behind The Rows” on his own, or if he is possessed by said entity. The fact remains that Isaac is one of Stephen King’s most frightening villains regardless. There is also a theory that “He Who Walks Behind The Rows” is yet another form of the next villain on the list.
2. Randall Flagg (various tales by Stephen King)
He goes by many names in many Stephen King stories. The name he’s perhaps best known by, however, is Randall Flagg. Whether he’s ushering in the apocalypse in “The Stand,” or running from Roland Deschain in “The Dark Tower,” the nefarious Flagg is only overshadowed by the entity taking the top spot of the best Stephen King villains.
1. Pennywise The Dancing Clown (IT)
Every nightmare you ever had. Everything you ever were afraid of. An entity older than time itself. Pennywise The Dancing Clown, or simply IT, trumps every other villain on the list. Pennywise could BE any of the villains on this list. His form is only limited to his victims’ imaginations and therefore he is the greatest villain in Stephen King’s universe. Was there really ever any doubt?
What do you think residents of Elm Street? Did we get the list right? Is there any others that should be on the list? Let us know in the comments constant readers.