The horror villains on my top 5 list have definitely earned the right to be called “icons.” Let’s take a look at some of the familiar faces of evil in the genre.
Horror villains are stalwarts of the genre. Whose face do you conjure up when you think of the ultimate boogeyman? See if you agree with my top 5 choices.
The Top 5 List
Tobe Hooper’s The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 — Courtesy of Cannon Films
5. Leatherface (The Texas Chainsaw Massacre,1974)
Based on the life of psychopath Ed Gein, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, burst onto movie screens in 1974. The heartless killer terrified the life out of us by cutting off his victim’s skin and sometimes wearing their body parts for his own personal satisfaction.
The story revolves around a group of friends who end up in the middle of nowhere, but are soon targeted by a chainsaw, wielding maniac. This classic documentary style film has inspired multiple sequels and remakes. It is still a cult favorite among purists of the genre.
The fact that the story is somewhat based on true events, is what makes it so intriguing. Now, the real-life crimes didn’t involve a man wielding a chainsaw. However, most of the other details are pretty accurate.
In his own right, Leatherface is definitely a true horror icon. Before Michael Myers was doing his iconic head tilt or Jason was ruining the campers lives at “Camp Crystal Lake”, Leatherface, along with his chainsaw, was wreaking all kinds of havoc.
Here is a modern take on the old 1974 trailer. With the bright colors it truly feels like a different film and less gritty. Which in my estimation was part of the original version’s charm. Check it out.Child’s Play 2 — Courtesy of Universal Pictures
4. Chucky (Child’s Play,1988)
The world was introduced to Chucky on November 9, 1988. Charles Lee Ray was a serial killer on the lam and running from the police when he was apprehended by law enforcement and shot multiple times. With some voodoo he was able to transfer his soul into a “good guy” doll called Chucky.
Enter Andy whose mother just bought him the demonic doll. Of course, Charles Lee wants to transfer his soul into Andy but he fails in his quest to become human again. Even in the later movies, Chucky became more of a comedic character.
He still had a very, creepy presence which made viewers very uncomfortable. The thought that a good guy doll could be capable of so many heinous crimes, is completely unbelievable. That is what made Chucky so terrifying.Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan — Courtesy of Paramount Pictures
3. Jason Voorhees (Friday the 13th,1980)
In the original Friday the 13th in 1980, Pamela Voorhees was on a vengeful quest for blood, as she slaughtered all the teenagers who resided at “Camp Crystal Lake”. When she was decapitated by the lone survivor, that allowed her son, Jason Voorhees, to be involved in the many sequels that were to follow her demise.
Jason Voorhees continued his legacy by killing anybody who would step foot onto the Camp Crystal Lake property. With his iconic hockey mask and a large machete, Jason would rule the massacre and anybody who would get in his way.
For the most part in the 1980s, Jason was the face of the slasher genre. If it wasn’t for the Friday the 13th franchise, horror as we know it today wouldn’t be as prevalent. The Jason Voorhees saga isn’t for everybody, but for a true hardcore to the bone horror fan, it is perfect.A Nightmare Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors — Courtesy of New Line Cinema
2. Freddy Krueger (Nightmare on Elm Street, 1984)
The dream killer famously known as Freddy Krueger, was created by Wes Craven. He is the stuff that nightmares are made of. A child killer who preyed upon young teenagers in their dreams, scaring the life out of them, literally.
After being burned alive by vengeful parents, Freddy Krueger’s evil would come back to haunt everyone in their slumber. Played by Robert Englund, Krueger struck fear into the hearts and minds of all those that lived on Elm Street.
Now the entire Elm Street franchise has spanned over 9 movies. If you count the remake, of course, which failed miserably at the box office.
What makes Freddy Krueger so terrifying is not only his burnt skin and his long knife glove but also his sick mind games. He enjoys toying with his victims slowly, rather than going straight for the kill.
Freddy Krueger will go down in history as one of the most iconic horror villains of all time. The legend of the nightmare will continue to grow and grow, even after we are long and gone.Halloween: Resurrection — Courtesy of Dimension Films
1. Michael Myers (Halloween, 1978)
At number one on this list is the masked killer himself, Michael Myers. “The Shape” first appeared in John Carpenter’s 1978 classic film, Halloween.
When Michael Myers brutally stabs his sister on Halloween night in 1963 for no apparent reason he gets sentenced to a mental hospital. 15 years later he escapes and goes on a killing spree that lasts for 10 sequels.
Now, Michael Myers has no rational explanation as to why he committed the heinous crimes. Later in the film sequels however his motives are explained. However, the original intent of the Myers’ character was that he was doing all of these horrible things for his own satisfaction.
He was purely and simply evil. In terms of the slasher genre, Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho got the ball rolling but Halloween kicked the door down and helped to influence many horror films and horror villains that we all know and watch to this day.
If there was no Michael Myers, then the likes of Jason Voorhees and Freddy Krueger, would cease to exist. And there you have it. The top 5 horror villains of all time.
Did your favorite horror villain make the list? Let us know in the comment section below.