Home » The Bad Boyfriends of Horror Round 1, Day 1

The Bad Boyfriends of Horror Round 1, Day 1

Horror movies have long tapped into the fears of the society, taking what scares us most and exaggerating it. I noticed a trend, thanks in large part to our 16 seed Christian from Midsommar, of horror movies featuring boyfriends (and husbands) who are beyond bad. The men on this list gaslight, cheat, abuse, and in the worst cases murder their significant others. 

But which one of these dirtbags is the actual worst? 

Let us know here

See the full rules here.

If you’re not sure who anyone is, or who you think is worse, we’ve got some information for you below! 

Jack from The House That Jack Built (1) versus Charles from The Others (32)  

Lars Von Trier’s movies are intentionally revolting, and The House That Jack Built may be the sickest. In the film, a tasteless meditation on the nature of storytelling with nothing to say about storytelling, Jack murders a large number of women, mutilating at least one of them who believes he’s her boyfriend. And maybe he is, but what he does to her isn’t love. 

RELATED: The House That Jack Built (Director’s Cut) is 2018’s Best Movie, Period

Charles, on the other hand, only makes a brief appearance in The Others and barely qualified for this tournament. He left his wife, Grace, and their children to fight in World War II. The neglect isn’t great, and neither is what happened to them because of it. 

Christian from Midsommar (16) versus Cameron Elam from Halloween (17) 


This one is going to be a close one. Anyone who’s seen Midsommar knows that Christian’s the epitome of a dirtbag. Portrayed brilliantly by Jack Reynor, he is the kind douche that will make you yell at the screen. He gaslights Dani about the danger her sister is in and tries to plan a month long international trip without telling his girlfriend. 

RELATED: Ari Aster’s Midsommar is Next Level Horror

Cameron Elam might give him a run for his money, though. He’s Allyson Strode’s boyfriend in the new Halloween. When she catches him cheating, he throws a tantrum, then her phone into a vat of jello. Who does that in any situation? More importantly, who does that in Haddonfield on Halloween night? 

RELATED: Halloween (2018) is a Welcome Return to Form [Blu-Ray Review]

Coffin Joe from At Midnight I’ll Take Your Soul (9) versus Micah from Paranormal Activity (24)

Coffin Joe is Brazilian horror’s biggest ghoul. Starring in At Midnight I’ll Take Your Soul, and appearing in nine other films, Joe murders his best friend Anthony before his wedding. He then tries to seduce the poor bride-to-be, Terezinha, with gifts. Things get worse from there. 

Micah, from Paranormal Activity, is undoubtedly more familiar to American audiences. He’s the boyfriend who repeatedly tells Katie that there is no ghost despite the filmed evidence. When Katie tells them they’re being haunted, he doesn’t listen. When Katie tells him to stop provoking the demon, he doesn’t listen. Micah doesn’t listen to women. 

RELATED: Paranormal Activity: Does it Hold Up? 

Jack Torrance from The Shining (8) versus Paul from The Descent (25)  

Jack Nicholson in the popular movie The Shining.

All work and no play make Jack a dull boy. But it didn’t really matter how much work or play Jack had in the film version of The Shining. He was physically abusive of his son Danny long before they arrived at the Overlook Hotel. The ghosts didn’t make him a sh*tty husband. They gave him an axe. 

RELATED: Stephen King Opens up About Why He Hates Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining

Meanwhile, The Descent’s Paul is barely on-screen, dying in a car crash so early it wouldn’t be considered a spoiler. He’s not bad because of that. Later on though, the movie reveals some secrets he was keeping that earned him a spot in this tournament. 

RELATED: Noteworthy Heroines of Horror: Sarah from The Descent

Guy Woodhouse from Rosemary’s Baby (4) versus David Mills from Se7en (29) 

What would you trade for fame? Since the film isn’t from Guy’s perspective, we don’t know how long he deliberated before he agreed to trade his wife’s womb for acting fame. He doesn’t stop there, though. He actively gaslights, drugs, and rapes her to help Satan get her pregnant. 

RELATED: Ten Horror Films Condemned by the Catholic Church

David Mills, on the other hand, is a detective in David Fincher’s excellent Se7en. He and his partner are hunting down a serial killer inspired by the Seven Deadly Sins. Mills neglects his wife after convincing her to move to the big city with him so he can hunt more dangerous criminals. Anyone who’s seen the movie knows what comes next, and more importantly, what’s in the box. 

Robert Thorn from The Omen (13) versus Dr. Lionel Barrett from The Legend of Hell House (20) 

Nine Beloved horror films that are kind of overrated

One of the roots of neglect and abuse is the idea that women are inferior to men physically, emotionally, or mentally. The trouble in The Omen doesn’t start with Damien. It starts with Robert Thorn lying to his wife. He tells her that the baby she gave birth to didn’t die. He doesn’t trust her to be able to deal with the pain. Because he doesn’t trust her, we get the antichrist. 

RELATED: Why the Omen Franchise Does Not Get the Love it Deserves

There were bed and breakfasts in 1973 when The Legend of Hell House was filmed. Dr. Lionel Barrett damn well knew about them too. Instead of asking if his wife Ann wanted to go to one, he invites her to come with him on a work trip to a legendarily haunted house. While he’s working all day, the ghosts take a liking to her. 

Alex Le Domas from Ready or Not (12) versus Money from Don’t Breathe (21)  

Alex Le Domas is an heir to a board game dynasty. He’s distanced himself from his family, but has an about face and decides to marry the love of his life, Grace, at their mansion. He neglects to mention their curse-stipulated tradition of playing a random game that could be murderous hide and seek to Grace. 

RELATED: Ready or Not [Frightfest 2019 Review]

Money from Don’t Breathe is on here for getting Rocky into trouble. He’s much lower on the list than Le Domas though, because Rocky agreed to come along without him withholding information. Money still got her into a potentially life threatening situation. 

RELATED: This Sinister True Story is Reminiscent of Don’t Breathe

Adrian Griffith from The Invisible Man (5) versus Clive from Bliss (28)  

[No pictures of Griffin available at this time.]

Adrian Griffith is a scary dude. He abuses Cecilia while everyone knows he’s alive. What makes it worse is that he continues to abuse her after he’s tricked everyone into thinking he’s dead. 

RELATED: The Invisible Man is the First Great Horror Movie of 2020

Clive from Bliss is the kind of guy who insists that Dezzy, who is already running late for a business meeting with her agent, give him a ride. Why? So he doesn’t have to take the bus. It’s not the worst thing he does. It sets the tone for the way he treats Dezzy for the rest of the film though.  

RELATED: Bliss [Frightfest 2019 Review]

Vote for the boyfriends you hate the most here! And make sure you come back tomorrow for Day 2 of Round 1!

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Written by Ryan C. Bradley
Ryan C. Bradley (he/him) has published work in The Missouri Review, The Rumpus, Dark Moon Digest, Daikaijuzine, and other venues. His first book, Saint's Blood, is available from St. Rooster Books now! You can learn more about him at: ryancbradleyblog.wordpress.com.
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