|Copyright ©2015 Mark Kelly.|
No story is complete without a villain of some way, shape or form. From the most innocent of Disney films to the most terrifying of horrors, the villain carries things forward.
For today, I shall present to you some of my past and present all-time favourite villains, and hopefully, explain why.
Sadly, I can't include the taxman or my current boss. Too scary.
*Note: not listed in any particular order of importance.*
Villain #1: The Daleks.
My very first childhood villain comes from the original Dr Who series. They terrified me and thrilled me at the same time. They fired my imagination and I could hardly wait for the following Saturday to arrive whenever the Daleks were involved in in the story line. Here's a nice compilation video for any of you Dr Who & the Daleks fans. Although I must say, the later incarnation of Davros in the 'new' series of Dr Who, to my mind, isn't a patch on the original - the original seemed to oozes malice and an evil genius intellect that the later version failed to match, plus the original Davros' voice was perfect for the role.
Villain #2: The Cybermen.
Close on the heels of the Daleks is the Cybermen. I think it is the face masks devoid of expression and emotion combined with the idea/sense of sheer brute strength and near unstoppable power that chilled me to the bone as a kid watching Dr Who. My most favourite episodes were the ones where Cyberman and Dalek went head-to-head. Magic.
Villain #3: Freddy Krueger - A Nightmare on Elm Street.
In 1984 'A Nightmare on Elm Street' appeared in our local video rental store and I recall sitting with my family to watch it on our VHS player/recorder - a big, clunky square metallic box with peg-like switches for play, record, fast forward and rewind.
The premise of the film was a chilling one: a monster who could cross the boundary of your nightmare and into your everyday waking reality. And worse, he could manipulate your dreams in order to terrify you and render you totally helpless. The original film was a great concept and quite well executed, but sadly, the follow-ons left much to be desired. But as a villain, Freddy Krueger as played by Robert Englund, was brilliantly scary.
Villain #4: Monster from the Id - 'The Forbidden Planet' (1956).
A classic sci-fi favourite of mine in my DVD collection, this film managed to really creep me out as a kid when I first saw it, primarily for this invisible monster, plus the ingenious use of sound by the film makers to give that feeling of impending doom as the monster approaches and attacks.
Brought up on such films as a kid, these classics hold a special place for me, especially the black & white B movies - always a Saturday night treat for me growing up, but only under parental supervision. Whatmakes this monster so intimidating is the suggestion of what it could be and allowing you, the viewer, to let your imagination fill in the blanks. I could almost guarantee, until the moment the creature is revealed within the laser beam fire, every person watching had created their own, unique monster from their darkest depths of terror. I know I did.
Villain #5: The Great White Shark in 'Jaws' (1975).
This film single-handedly scared the crap out of me and put me off swimming in anything other than an indoor swimming pool. It is also one of my all-time favourite films and has a beloved place in my DVD collection.
Jaws, as a film, holds great memories for me as it was a time when I was just starting high school and also enrolling in the City of Cardiff Swimming Club (ironically). I love the cast, and whoever did the casting deserved a medal. The musical score was equally as brilliant in how it lifted the mood when the sailing boats were gliding across the sun-kissed sea, and then turned dark and threatening to signify the presence of the Great White shark below. I shall never forget the scene where the characters played by Richard Dreyfuss and Roy Sheider go out on a night hunt for the shark and encounter a partially submerged boat. At which point, Dreyfuss changes into a wet suit to go into the water - this is where I begin to freak out. No way in a million years would I do that. Nuh-huh. Nope. What happens next I shall keep quiet about, in case someone reading this has yet to see the film. Needless to say, I squirmed in my seat watching it.