TV Lists

Top 9 Best Anime Villains, RANKED

Who doesn't LOVE a good villain?

Shueisha

An anime series is only as good as its villains.

Great villains can make or break any story, and anime just so happens to have some of the best. From over-the-top galactic conquerors to sociopathic high schoolers and psychotic fathers, anime villains are a diverse bunch.

So as an anime fan with a useless screenwriting degree, I'm ranking the best anime villains based on how complex they feel as characters and how well they function within the larger narrative.

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Culture Feature

Dear White People: AAVE Is an Actual Dialect, Not Your "Stan Culture"

Using a Black dialect isn't a meme—it's cultural appropriation.

As Black Lives Matter protests have rightfully taken the world by storm over the past couple of months, we're long overdue for thorough evaluations of just how often aspects of Black heritage have been co-opted by white audiences.

It should be obvious that much of fashion and music as we know it today was invented by Black people. We (hopefully) all know by now that we can no longer accept Blackface and use of the n-word by non-Black people as the norm—and Internet users have tried "canceling" offenders in the public eye, with varying degrees of success.

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TV Features

Why Yu Yu Hakusho Still Holds Up Better Than Any Other Old School Anime

Even to this day, "Dark Tournament" remains the defining shonen "Tournament Arc."

Shueisha

Oftentimes, it's impossible to separate the quality of the anime we grew up watching from the sense of nostalgia those series evoke.

Case in point: Dragon Ball Z. Historically, DBZ is likely the most influential anime series of all time, both redefining the shonen genre for every series that came after it and introducing an entire generation of Western kids to Japanese animation through the legendary Funimation dub on Cartoon Network's Toonami block. Chances are high that if you meet someone who loves anime and grew up in the late '90s or early 2000s, they'll have a deeply personal bond with DBZ.

At the same time, it's hard to argue that DBZ holds up in the modern day, especially for new viewers coming in with fresh eyes. The pacing of the original series is super slow, the fights drag out forever, and while DBZ created so many of shonen's most prevalent tropes ("This isn't even my final form!"), almost everything DBZ ever did has since been done better by other series.

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