If you ask me, the best kind of bad guy is the one you can totally sympathize with – the one that could have been the hero had his story just been tweaked a little bit.

The guy (or girl) who thinks he (or she) is the hero, even though they’re very clearly not.

Here are 15 villains that Redditors think had pretty solid motivations for their awful behavior.

15. Bruce Wayne could have just given him the money.

Mr. Freeze.

Guy just wanted to save his wife.

14. Never trust the machines.

The Machines in the Matrix.

The Second Renaissance showed that it was humans who struck first and tried to destroy the sentient Machines once they became intelligent. The Machines removed themselves from society and created their own city 1-0 in the middle of the desert to try to allay human fears but it still didn’t work.

Humans were the aggressors. The Machines wanted to protect themselves.

And the Machines are not even evil. Instead of just exterminating humans or chopping off their heads and using their bodies as batteries they took the trouble to create a massive virtual world for us. They even tried making it a Paradise at first (according to Agent Smith) but we rejected it so they went more realistic.

13. The gods really are the villain in every story.

Luke Castellan from Percy Jackson. His motivation was that the gods didn’t pay enough attention to their kids (himself included) and wanted the gods and Camp Half-Blood to recognize the children of the minor gods.

12. I’m guessing most people would be behind him.

Zemo from Captain America Civil War. Superhero battle kills everyone he cares about, destroys his city and sets his country back to the Stone Age.

Then they just go home. Zemo targeted the avengers and set them up to turn on each other.

A man with no powers was able to beat the Avengers.

11. And I mean his name is Dr. Doom what do you want?

Dr. Doom.

He has literally, like without a shadow of a doubt seen every single outcome of every single decision he has or will ever make. And the only way humanity survives is if he rules them and takes them on a certain path.

Yet the f*cking fantastic four keep on beating his ass down.

His rule isn’t even that bad, even in the context of ‘a great leap forward.’ The FF just don’t like him because he’s just a power hungry single leader and being that and ruling the earth has historically been bad. But you know what all those other populist leaders didn’t have? LITERAL DEMONSTRABLE CLAIRVOYANCE AND SUPER INTELLIGENCE.

10. That’s true Tom was just doing his job.

Tom from Tom and Jerry. He was really the good guy all along. Keeping rodents out of his house.

9. I mean he still shouldn’t have resorted to murder but his anger was definitely justified.

Ed Harris’s character in The Rock. Ex-vet wanted a decent funeral for some of his fallen comrades plus I think a 100 mil in compensation for their families

Spoiler alert: the president said no

8. Who can’t sympathize with that?

Prince Zuko, before he sided with Team Avatar.

All he truly wanted was to go home, have the respect of his nation, and the love of his father.

7. The real villain is the healthcare system am I right?

Sandman from Spider-Man 3. He just wanted a chance to see his dying daughter before she died. The only reason he robbed places was the get enough money to find treatment for her. He accidentally killed uncle Ben, and felt really bad about it, to the point where it haunted him.

6. Everyone over the age of 40 is Squidward.


5. The older you get the easier it is to identify.

the grinch. loud ass whos.

4. Never underestimate the hungry mob.

The hyenas from The Lion King. Hunger is a powerful motivator.

3. You’d forgive him almost anything, really.

Magneto. Having been a Holocaust survivor, it makes a lot of sense to not want to see the people you identify with once again persecuted for the circumstances of their birth.

2. You can never go wrong with Star Wars.

Feels like a good place to drop this quote :

“The best villains don’t have evil intentions, only evil methods.”

Edit: For everyone saying Palpatine, kindly peruse: r/EmpireDidNothingWrong

1. We’re living in a society!

Megamind. He became bad because people told him he could only be bad just because of his background, Smh my head. We live in a society.

Edit: the amount of people I got to woosh because of smh my head.

I love a good anti-hero – and I mean, how boring would movies be without a bad guy, right?

Do you have a favorite villain? Share yours with us in the comments!