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To start off, I am not including any of Marvel’s TV show villains as they, like Kilgrave and Kingpin, had entire seasons to grow and develop. The villains in the movies only have just an hour or two to develop and show us who they are. Meaning, this list will not include the villains from Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Daredevil and Jessica Jones. Because, let’s be honest here, Kingpin and Kilgrave are outstanding.
To me, a good villain is someone who knows its purpose. They are driven. They truly believe that they are doing the right thing. They believe that they are right, and the rest of the world is wrong. Or maybe they are just power hungry, fame and money are what they desire. Or possibly, they just want to see a peaceful kind of world.
The Marvel Cinematic Universe has shown us quite a few great villains, and other not so great ones. How would they rank against the other? Let’s get into the list, then. From worst to best, I present to you my top 5 Marvel villains.
5. Iron Monger
Fame, money, and power. This is what our first entry in the MCU’s villain thirsts for, and also the villain in the 5th spot in my list. Obadiah Stane thought he could easily get what he wanted. Tony Stark was a pushover, until Stane pushed him over the edge and Tony became a problem.
“For thirty years, I’ve been holding you up! I built this company up from nothing! Nothing’s gonna stand in my way – least of all, you!”, said Obadiah Stane.
This grand company is what he desired. Apparently, he had worked on building this company for many years.
He was an amazing villain known for his cunning and planning. He’s never thought of getting rid of Tony until the invention of the Iron Man.
He had a plan. Stane went with the punches and trying his best to achieve his goal.
Don’t be fooled by Loki’s dashingly good looks, the man is manipulative and dangerous. He made me feel sorry for him and I indeed shed tears over him. His cunning and charm makes him menacing, evil, and dangerous. He throws out the tears and instantly, you feel bad for him.
You’d think we should have learned not to believe him by this point.
On the contrary, that’s not how Loki works. That partly explains why he is in my top 5.
So what is Loki’s motto? It is quite obvious that there is one thing located in our Frost Giant’s mind, a throne. Last time we saw Loki, he appears to have achieved his wish.
Has Loki won? Has he won what he has been struggling for? It appears to be. His cunning and charm have gotten him to this point, but what will happen when Thor finds out about this? All we can do is to wait and see.
Cut off one head, two more shall rise.
There are two ‘heads’ of HYDRA that I wanted to list out, but after carefully thought about it, I realized that HYDRA as a whole needed to be on this list.
This is what Arnim Zola thought about HYDRA in Captain America The Winter Soldier:
“HYDRA was founded on the belief that humanity could not be trusted with its own freedom. What we did not realize is that if you try to take that freedom, they resist. The war taught us much. Humanity needed to surrender its freedom willingly…”
They believe that the world had to be dominated to have peace and that is what this organization stands for. Peace isn’t a bad thing to dream of, but how you approach and execute it is what determines whether you are a hero or a villain. HYDRA wanted to achieve it by world domination, which isn’t the proper way to do. Two strong leaders of the organization prove how this doesn’t work.
HYDRA first appeared in Captain America The First Avenger. It was founded and lead by Red Skull.
Red Skull reigned during World War II. He is the dangerous villain in Captain America: The First Avenger. To be honest, he was outstanding until he revealed his true self. His character was a strong leader, he truly believed in what he was doing was in the right, and he was menacing. He vanishes at the end of the movie, but that wasn’t the last of Red Skull.
Fast forward more than 70 years later, and HYDRA still discreetly exists. Everyone thought it had ended with Red Skull.
Their ability to hide from the world is one of the top things that impressed me most.
They hid themselves from the Nick Fury! How can that even possible?
Alexander Pierce, is the head of S.H.I.E.L.D. and HYDRA in Captain America The Winter Soldier. This is the man that kept his true alliance a secret from Director Fury. How are you able to be so wicked and hide it that well? This organization was a big one, and menacing. It, and the people that were or currently are a part of it, are in this third position because of their ability to work in the dark, keep themselves well hidden, and how close they were able to get to their goal.
Nothing can hold this ultimate Marvel villain. Ultron isn’t afraid to show what he thinks is right to own world peace. In his mind, it can only become real if the human race is completely wiped out.
Alike to the previous one, Ultron’s core motive is to bring “peace in our time”. He was created by Tony Stark using the Infinity Stone in Loki’s scepter, which Vision now owns.
He was this close to beating the Avengers. Ultron is an amazing villain. He is that type of villain that you know where he is coming from. At certain points, I had a hard time actually feeling against him. Ultron had his moments where you knew he actually cared for people.
He sat and listened to the Twins’ story about their adolescent, and truly acted like he cared. A caring villain is a dangerous one. He could literally kill you with kindness, but he was just as menacing and cunning as he was kind.
Even though he wasn’t able to complete his goal of world peace by defeating the Avengers, he was still able to start building up that tension that our top villain was able to expound upon.
1. Baron Zemo
Our most recent addition to the Marvel’s Cinematic Universe villain collection is Helmut Zemo. He is the greatest villain we have seen so far in my point of view.
Zemo is smart. Unlike these other villains, he knew he couldn’t beat the Avengers and he didn’t even try to. Instead, he approached his goal from a different method.
He pitted our heroes against each other, psychologically attacked them. He expounded upon the turmoil that was built up from the Sokovia Accords. He carefully played his cards right to help strengthen the wall between Stark and Rogers.
To a certain extent, he was able to accomplish what he set out to do.