Over the years, we have had a few versions of the Spider-Man. And while all of them have been great in their own right, it’s their villains that have truly decided the fate of the films. So we made a little list, ranking Spider-Man villains, from worst to the best.
11. Electro – The Amazing Spider-Man 2
Firstly, kudos to Jaime Foxx for bringing some depth to an otherwise badly executed character. Make no mistake, Electro’s intentions were complicated and he never wanted to be a villain. But the character’s turn to the dark side was botched severely and the audience simply felt disconnected from him. Also, the CGI was horrible.
10. Green Goblin- The Amazing Spider-Man
Dane DeHaan brought his signature tortured intensity to the character and gave us a Goblin driven by rage, pain and a strong sense of betrayal. However, the film as a whole was a messy affair as it tried to juggle too many things at once and as such failed to legitimise the threat that DeHaan’s Green Goblin.
9. Venom- Spider-Man 3
It’s well documented how Sam Raimi never wanted to introduce Venom in the film but was made to by the powers that be. Topher Grace probably wasn’t the right choice to play Venom either. This character lacked the intensity of his comic book counterpart and you can’t play Venom without that. It’s why Tom Hardy’s Venom works despite 90% of his personality being a comedian.
8. The Sandman- Spider-Man 3
Thomas Haden Church had recently been Oscar-nominated for his wonderful performance in Sideways when he was cast for the role. To be fair to him, he did remarkably well to introduce an empathetic and complex villain but the presence of Venom meant he was never going to be part of the main event or fulfil his potential.
7. Lizard- The Amazing Spider-Man
Bringing a fan favourite villain from the comics would be the bulletproof way to reel the fans in, wouldn’t it? Well, not if you change their character from being tragic to be a complete monster without remorse. And while it did make sense in the context of the film, this version of the villain rid all goodwill the actual character from the comics brought with him.
6. Doc Ock – Spider-Man: Into The Spiderverse
Kathryn Hahn was brilliant but the role was just too short-lived to have any real impact on the film or the audience. It was a good attempt but ultimately, she got overshadowed by the film’s overall arc and the Kingpin, of course.
5. Kingpin – Spider-Man: Into The Spiderverse
Kingpin was an intimidating villain with a tragic story as well. But what probably didn’t work for him was that it wasn’t the only version of the character at the time. Vincent D’Onofrio’s Wilson Fisk was simply a lot more memorable and to this day, makes this version of the character an afterthought.
4. Mysterio – Spider-Man: Far From Home
Gyllenhaal’s Mysterio was slightly different to what we were used to as a villain. Nevertheless, he made the character his own and the film as a whole made way for much bigger things for our hero. That said, it still seemed childish compared to the previous villains he’s faced before.
3. Vulture – Spider-Man: Homecoming
The only reason to not like this character was because he was not really a bad guy but just an average guy suffering the consequences of billionaire antics. That said, Michael Keaton was intimidating as The Vulture and full marks to him for giving us a powerful villain, a feat rarely achieved in the MCU.
2. Green Goblin – Spider-Man
Willem Defoe’s Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde approach to the character did wonders for the film and actually gave us a villain that could break the internet if it appeared today, i.e, almost two decades later. The only complaint about his Goblin was perhaps its ridiculously comic-looking costume but Defoe’s performance meant you paid little attention to much else.
1. Doctor Octopus – Spider-Man 2
Alfred Molinas’s Doctor Octopus is so universally loved that even the staunchest of enemies would agree on him being the best Spider-Man villain ever. His relationship with Peter and the fact that Peter looked up to him as a hero, a father figure of sorts, made his descent into madness even more painful to watch. Also, the movie gave each of his mechanical arms a different personality, thus digging out as much as they could out of this legendary actor.
I truly believe this is a ranking we can all agree on, more or less.