While female horror villains are a much rarer breed than female horror victims, they are every bit as vicious, manipulative, violent and evil as their male counterparts. Just take a look at my personal top 10 selections below. And perhaps next time when you think of women in horror you won't think of the stereotypical damsel in distress but of these lovely and deadly ladies!
Katharine Isabelle in Ginger Snaps
Ginger (Katharine Isabelle) – Ginger Snaps
Barbara Steele in Black Sunday
Princess Vajda (Barbara Steele) – Black Sunday
This evil princess vows revenge after being killed for practicing witchcraft and true to her word returns from the dead for vengeance. The stunning Barbara Steele steals the show in this gothic Mario Bava tale, playing both the evil Princess Vajda and her innocent descendant.
Samara in The Ring
Samara (Daveigh Chase) – The Ring
Lesley Gilb in Lemora, A Child's Tale of the Supernatural
Lemora (Lesley Gilb) – Lemora, A Child's Tale of the Supernatural
Patty McCormack in The Bad Seed
Rhoda Penmark (Patty McCormack) – The Bad Seed
Childhood and innocence don't always go hand-in-hand, and little Rhoda Penmark is definitely proof of this! This evil child likes getting other people in trouble, causing "accidents" and is generally rotten to the core. Which, of course, is why she is so darn endearing!
Béatrice Dalle in Inside
La Femme (Béatrice Dalle) – Inside
Bette Davis in What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?
Baby Jane Hudson (Bette Davis) – What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?
Eihi Shiina in Audition
Asami (Eihi Shiina) – Audition
Think you'll never find the right mate? Well, whatever you do, don't hold "auditions" to find a girlfriend/boyfriend and have them find out that they "auditioned" for the part of your significant other. Or you just might find yourself at the wrong end of a piano wire that can cut through flesh and bone easily. I'll never forget the "Kiri kiri kiri kiri kiri kiri!" sounds Asami makes...
Angela Bettis in May
May Dove Canady (Angela Bettis) – May
Mater Suspiriorum (Suspiria), Mater Tenebrarum (Inferno), Mater Lachrymarum (Mother of Tears)
The Three Mothers (Mater Suspiriorum, the Mother of Sighs, Mater Tenebrarum, the Mother of Darkness/Shadows and Mater Lachrymarum, the Mother of Tears) from Argento’s "Mothers" trilogy (Suspira, Inferno, Mother of Tears)
Honorable mention: Marie (Cécile De France) - Haute Tension, Annie Wilkes (Kathy Bates) - Misery, the villain in Tale of Two Sisters (to avoid spoilers, I won't give her name), the Merrye women in Spider Baby, the killer in Alice, Sweet Alice, Carrie White (Sissy Spacek) in Carrie, Mum (Elizabeth Moody) from Dead Alive, Angela (Amelia Kinkade) from Night of the Demons, Muffy/Buffy (Deborah Foreman) from April Fool's Day, the Bride of Frankenstein (though I don't really consider her a villain), Mary Lou from the Prom Night sequels, and, just for kicks, Serial Mom (Kathleen Turner)! I'm sure I'm forgetting a bunch here...
Question: Who are your favorite female horror villains?
Great list. If Hollywood ever remade Audition or Inside who in the world would play La Femme or Asami? You know it would be completely wrong.ReplyDelete
Great list! Glad you included Ginger and May in there, I think May is an often overlooked film and I LOVE the Ginger Snaps films! Betty Davis in What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?...she was sooo great in that!ReplyDelete
I think I may have to do a list like this. You put some great choices. Although I think it could have used a bit of Pamela Voorhees and Margaret White. And Fairuza Balk from The Craft as well. But it's hard to choose between 10.ReplyDelete
I scared the living shit out of my friend after she watched The Ring for the first time. As she left the theater, I went to a pay phone, called her up and said: "SEVEN DAYS!" in the creepiest voice I could. Hahahaha! She just about pissed her pants. I actually made her cry, LOL!ReplyDelete
Samara will always hold a special place in my heart just for that! :D
Hahaha VC, that's just CLASSIC!!ReplyDelete
Oh, I loved this. I'm particularly pleased you included Bette Davis, I love her. Fantastic post.ReplyDelete
Don't kill me for watching comedy, but what about Wendsday Adams?? She used to be my little sister's role model... now it's Ppolly Pocket...ReplyDelete
LOVE Wednesday! But, ya, she's disqualified since Addams Family is comedy. Perhaps I should do a list of favorite spooky female characters that aren't in the horror genre...Wednesday would definitely be on top of that list! :)ReplyDelete
ANGELA BAKER.....SLEEPAWAY CAMP......HELLO?!!!!!!!!ReplyDelete
Hello? Have you seen the end of that movie? I wouldn't put that character under a "female" banner, if ya know what I mean...LOL!!!Delete
Great post :) I loved the Mother from 'Sleepwalkers.' She was like a much cooler and scarier 'cat woman'. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7MDUbjbTZosReplyDelete
Mary from the movie "American Mary", Lola from "The Loved Ones", Erika from "Red, White and Blue", Esther from "Orphan", Mandy from "All the boys love Mandy Lane", Alyce (some title for the movie)...GabrielaReplyDelete
Ya, except none of those movies were out yet at the time this article was written. Definitely loved Mary from American Mary and Lola from The Loved Ones.Delete
Came across this and enjoyed it, but wanted to point out that the witch in the middle for the Three Mothers picture is the same as the one on the right; the character had a much smaller role in Inferno before her taking center stage in Mother of Tears, and since it was made a few decades later, they obviously got a younger actress to portray her. The main witch in that one is the one that turns into the grim reaper creature at the climax.ReplyDelete
Thanks for the list! I have a Friday the 13th costume b'day party I am going to. It is horror film villains but I dont want to be a boy villain I want to be a girl one!ReplyDelete