Sigourney Weaver, Bruce Campbell and 10 heroes of horror

NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 29: Actress Sigourney Weaver takes part in a discussion following a 40th Anniversary screening of "Alien" at Symphony Space on November 29, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Michael Loccisano/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 29: Actress Sigourney Weaver takes part in a discussion following a 40th Anniversary screening of "Alien" at Symphony Space on November 29, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Michael Loccisano/Getty Images) /

Sigourney Weaver, Bruce Campbell and Kurt Russell. What do they have in common? They have all made our top 10 list of characters that are heroes of the horror genre.

Sigourney Weaver, Bruce Campbell and Kurt Russell are well known for their portrayals of heroes in legendary horror franchises. Each actor is considered an icon of the genre.

We felt that there were so many characters from our favorite movies that also deserved recognition. So, we compiled a list of our top 10 protagonists.

10 Heroes of Horror

Sigourney Weaver: Alien

Ellen Ripley is the epitome of the strong female lead. From the moment when she first appears on screen in Alien, we get the sense that her character doesn’t suffer fools gladly.

She is calm, cool and collected under pressure. Ripley can think logically when chaos surrounds her as it does on the Nostromo when the Xenomorph is on the hunt for victims.

We love the way that she stands her ground when she has to face a creature that has killed her co-workers. Brave and uncompromising, she squares off against the alien menace before ejecting it into space so that she can safely make the journey back home to Earth.

Bruce Campbell: Evil Dead

Ash Williams is one of the few characters that transitioned well from movies to the smaller screen. When we met him in the first installment of the Evil Dead franchise, he was a naïve college student. Definitely not prepared to handle the demonic Deadites that wanted to kill him.

By the time we met up with him in Evil Dead 2,  Ash was on the verge of losing his sanity and possessed by a demon. He chops off his hand, replacing it with a chainsaw. Instead of succumbing mentally, he becomes resilient and ready to face the ancient evil.

In Army of Darkness, Williams has come full circle and now he is a wisecracking, battle weary veteran of the Deadite wars. This version of Ash isn’t a superhero though. As an audience we see that he is human and subject to mistakes.

Ash vs Evil Dead picks up where Army of Darkness left off. We have an older Deadite slayer not necessarily a smarter one. However, over the course of three seasons, we see Williams evolve into a devoted father, a leader and the savior of the world.

Jamie Lee Curtis: Halloween

Before Ripley, there was Laurie Strode. A brave high school senior who had to protect the child she was babysitting while fighting a masked, knife wielding maniac who murdered her friends.

Much like Ash after his dealings with Deadites for years on end, she is suffering from PTSD from combatting Michael Myers. 2018 saw Laurie being totally prepared to face her nemesis again.

This time, she is a gun expert and a survivalist. Our heroine goes head to head with Michael and ends up killing him (or so we thought).

Supposedly, the last two installments in the franchise, Halloween Kills and Halloween Ends will wrap up the Strode/Myers saga. We can’t wait to see how she will kick Michael’s butt.

Kurt Russell: The Thing

R.J. MacReady is a legendary character created by the horror master himself, John Carpenter. Kurt Russell is perfect as the strong, stoic man of action.

This is the type of person you want by your side if you have to combat a shapeshifting alien in a remote research facility in Antarctica. MacReady is not afraid of doing what is necessary like killing a colleague who has transformed into something not of this world. You know he is capable of keeping it together while the world is falling apart.

Heather Langenkamp: A Nightmare on Elm Street

What list of heroes of horror would be complete without Nancy Thompson? A Nightmare on Elm Street was one of those films that caught people off guard. Freddy Krueger was a new villain that preyed on teenagers by killing them in their dreams.

Nancy, like Laurie Strode was a popular girl with lots of friends. Also, like Carpenter’s character, Wes Craven’s final girl was clever and able to outwit Freddy.

Armed with a Molotov cocktail, she sets this pure evil entity on fire. The final nail in his coffin was when Nancy discovered she had the power within her to banish Freddy forever by conquering her fear of him. With nothing to feed on, Krueger is bested (until the next time).

Rounding out our heroes of horror list:

  • Donald Pleasence: Dr. Loomis knows what makes Michael Myers tick. He is a valuable ally to have.
  • Patrick Wilson, Vera Farmiga: Ed and Lorraine Warren fearless demon fighters in The Conjuring series.
  • Lin Shaye: Elise Rainier takes on the Insidious entities from the Further and wins.
  • Ashley Laurence: Kirsty Cotton is able to take out her Uncle Frank and handle the Cenobites in Hellraiser.
  • Max von Sydow: Father Lankester Merrin, veteran Exorcist. He dies during his battle with Pazuzu but he doesn’t back down. “The power of Christ compels you!”

Next. The Exorcist and 4 disturbing movies that made audiences ill. dark

All of the films featuring the heroes of horror mentioned above can be found on major streaming services like Netflix, Tubi, VUDU, Amazon Prime, iTunes and Google Play.

Who are your favorite heroes of horror? Let us know in the comment section.