The continuing popularity of the Marvel villain Loki, who even managed to get his own series and redemption arc, shows just how enduring villains can be. A great deal of his popularity stems from just how funny he is, despite his evil nature.
Thus, even though the heroes of the story are supposed to be the focus of attention, it is often the case that the comedic villain is the one who gets the best laughs. The users of Reddit have helpfully identified a number of comedy villains who have made them laugh and helped them to appreciate a movie even more than they already did.
10/10 Richmond Valentine
Kingsman: The Secret Service is a skilled blend of comedy and action, grounded by great performances. Though Taron Egerton and Colin Firth deserve a great deal of credit for their roles, Samuel L. Jackson’s Richmond Valentine is also a compelling and very funny screen presence. Pittsburghposter identifies this particular character as one of their favorites.
It’s easy to see why. As he almost always does when he appears on-screen, Jackson exudes charisma. In this case, he manages to be both very funny and very terrifying at the same time.
9/10 Dr. Evil
The first Austin Powers movie was one of the funniest movies of the 1990s, and it was a brilliant spoof of the James Bond movies of ages past. What makes the movie especially hilarious is, of course, Mike Myers performances as both Austin Powers himself and also of Dr. Evil.
The latter is one of the funniest and campiest villains to have emerged from the spy genre, particularly since he is a pastiche of so many great Bond villains. Patishungry simply says: “Dr. Evil is one funny man.” With his signature comedic styling, Myers manages to make the character into an outlandish caricature it is impossible not to laugh at.
Though Hercules might be one of the underrated Disney movies, it does nevertheless feature a compelling villain in the person of Hades. Voiced by James Woods, he is not nearly as sinister as some of his other evil counterparts in other movies, but with his quick wit, his banter, and his irreverence, he definitely stands out from the crowd.
He is also uproariously funny, willing to puncture the gravitas of the other gods on Mount Olympus. FiveHundredMilesHigh calls it: “Fantastic performance, and beautiful animation to go with it.” With a combination of a silver-tongued wit and a fiery hot temper when things don’t go his way, Hades is truly one of those Disney villains who have made his mark.
7/10 Darth Vader
Darth Vader is, of course, one of the most recognizable villains of both Star Wars and popular culture more generally. Though he isn’t always seen as being funny, the truth is that he actually is quite droll in his attitude. TheZinator points out a number of the Sith Lord’s most notable lines, many of which manage to be both disturbing and humorous at the same time.
There’s no question that it is James Earl Jones’ delivery that grants these particular lines their power. Somehow, he manages to make Vader both very human and utterly inhuman.
6/10 Sheriff Of Nottingham
The late Alan Rickman was one of the most talented actors of his generation. Though he was very often cast in dramatic roles, he was also capable of delivering a comic performance, even in a movie that was supposed to be taken seriously. In Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, for example, in which he plays a sneering and very camp Sheriff of Nottingham.
AmbivalentApoplectic puts it this way: “I think it’s pretty obvious Alan Rickman and Kevin Costner were starring in very different films. Total scenery chewing mastery and has all the best lines in the film.” Clearly, for some viewers at least Rickman’s performance offered an internal comedic commentary on the movie’s own pretensions.
5/10 Dr. Strangelove
Stanley Kubrick was a truly visionary director, and he had the ability to create movies that lacerated the complacency of American culture. In Dr. Strangelove, for example, he uses the conventions of black comedy to ruthlessly satirize paranoia over the atomic bomb (as well as the tendency of both the US and the USSR to see themselves as all-powerful).
Peter Sellers exhibits his true genius as an actor in several roles, most notably as the deranged Dr. Strangelove. It is an over-the-top performance that, in Sellers’ capable hands, becomes comic art. It’s no wonder that escapistwit identifies Strangelove as one of his favorite funny villains.
There are a number of notable 2000 Disney movies, one of the funniest of which is The Emperor’s New Groove. Though David Spade puts in a great voice performance, it is Eartha Kitt’s Yzma and Patrick Warburton’s Kronk who are the real standouts.
A study in opposites, they manage to mine the dialogue for true comedy gold. It’s very clear from the way that the two deliver their lines that they are having the time of their lives, and they manage to enliven the screen any time they appear. They are also very popular with the users of Reddit, one of whom, ActivateGuacamole, says simply: “Yzma is the funniest villain.”
The MCU is one of the most profitable and successful Hollywood franchises, and it is also known for creating some spectacular villains. Of these, the funniest is definitely Tom Hiddleston’s Loki, who always manages to puncture his brother Thor’s pompous self-regard with his own biting wit and sense of humor. He has proven to be a particular favorite among fans, especially on Reddit.
One user writes: “Loki is by far the best villain in the MCU. Tom Hiddleston plays him to perfection, and his scenes never fail to make me laugh.” And, as he shows in the series that bears his name, he is still quite capable of delivering withering commentary.
Few Disney villains are quite as beloved as Ursula. Voiced by the late Pat Carroll, she exudes a sinister charm that is irresistible. She is also, as one Reddit user points out, a very funny one. She has a way of delivering her lines that manages to convey both Ursula’s evil cunning and her wicked sense of humor.
There’s no denying, however, that the centerpiece of her entire character is the song “Poor Unfortunate Souls.” This song manages to capture so much of what makes Ursula such a great villain, and it is one of the best numbers in the entire film.
1/10 Hedley Lamarr
Mel Brooks has always excelled at creating very memorable villains in his movies. One of the most notable of these is Hedley Lamarr of Blazing Saddles, a man constantly contending with the fact that everyone confuses his name for that of the famous classic Hollywood actress Hedy Lemarr.
Paris1968 was particularly taken with actor Harvey Korman’s performance, writing: “Korman… sort of like Jackie Gleason in Smokey and the Bandit… if that movie came out in this era, Korman might actually be nominated for an Academy Award.” It is true that it is one of the best of his career.