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Seven Horror Movie Villains Who Have Outstayed Their Welcome

The horror movie dynamic often revolves around the story of a victim and an offender. Not necessarily a tale of David & Goliath, but more or less a relationship in which one is prey and the other is predator. Now, a lot of people appreciate our heroes–the last man standing and the final femme or our brave detective solving the case. Many love to celebrate effective horror movie villains like Michael Myers or Freddy Krueger. However, we’re not here to talk about such mainstays. 

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Our focus today is on those slashers and thrashers who’ve lost the plot or failed to make the cut in any significant manner. Be that as it may, it seems they’ve long outstayed their welcome. With that in mind, we are looking at seven horror movie antagonists who are ready to be retired. Why seven, you may ask? Well, because it’s my list and these “characters” represent some of the seven deadly sins of horror cinema…sloth, gluttony, vanity, wrath, take you pick. Not to mention, it’s a sin that they’ve stuck around this long. Let’s begin…


We are kicking things off with a rather unsurprising yet seemingly divisive pick. Jigsaw is a complex identity that once instilled fear in viewers but has held on for far too long. 

There been roughly as many Saw films as Friday the 13th, though one of those franchises has been dead in the water since at least 2009 (although a series is on the way). And, while the first few films that actually involve Jigsaw had merit involving the unique “fight for your life” concept as well as thought-provoking messages of the killer’s motif, it feels as though the ink in this longwinded thriller novella has run dry. The consistency is long gone and the rules seemingly shift in every sequel.

The new killers that take over the Jigsaw persona just don’t have the same kick as Tobin Bell. The name has kind of lost its meaning and became one-note. Even in the latest Saw X installment, which shows somewhat of a return to form for the original Jigsaw, there were signs of aging. The novelty has worn off and each new instamment feels like more of the same. The game is over.

Jigsaw from the Saw Films Leprechaun 

Ah yes, the infamous green sack of slime that just can’t keep his mouth shut for more than a few seconds. The Leprechaun, famously (for better or for worse) portrayed by Warwick Davis, is a pint-sized horror movie villain who, much like his namesake suggests, blends wacky antics with a cheeky accent and some fairly memorable, if completely absurd, kills. 

This little guy has made a notorious legacy from the six, nay seven if you count the 2012 remake with Hornswoggle (yes, the one from the WWE) flicks that, once you get right down to them, kind of start to grate at you in a way few  other horror films can. 

The Leprechaun character was always a comedic façade for something that frankly ran its entire fuel engine dry by the time they went to space in the fourth film. To run it back, you’ve had the Leprechaun breaking out of a crate, Crash Bandicoot-style in the first movie, trying to woo a maiden a la The Princess Bride in the second, doing Elvis impressions and jumping a guy to death on a pogo stick in part three, all to end up in space like so many other horror franchises. Not to mention the two ‘hood’ sequels.

The first effort with a young Jen Aniston isn’t too shabby. But everything to come after that pales by comparison. 

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I know this one may be a bit controversial because of the legendary status of the horror series in question. However, much like the previous entry on our list, this guy, oriignally played by Doug Bradley, has been to space, hell and back, and everywhere in between. It appears the writers of this Clive Barker creation have lost their marbles and ideas fairly quickly, all things considered.

For what it’s worth, it only took a mere three movies for it to become monotonous and the acting prowess of Bradley can only do so much. The Pinhead character is only onscreen sparingly and yet not a lot is done with him when he is. When the Lament Configuration was activated for the first time, there was a general feeling of fright and fear. Alas, over time the formula became a bit, er, formulaic, despite the difference in settings. 

The lack of innovation when it comes to this franchise really goes to show that even the franchises based from works of some of England’s best writer/directors with the most intriguing of premises can go downhill very quickly. 

With all that said, the 2022 remake did breathe new life into a franchise on life support. The picture features exceptional effects and a refreshing script that puts the later Hellraiser sequels to shame. Fingers crossed that any future installments will follow suit rather than reverting back to old habits. 

Demonic Toys/Puppet Master 

For this one, I have to put the two together because I really can’t for the life (or death) of me figure out which one I detest more . The Demonic Toys, while not the most egregious offenders on this list, are just painfully one-note and feature some of the most annoying voiceover effects of any horror movie. I vivivldy remember the first time I viewed that made-for-TV crossover film. Certainly a low point for both franchises. 

While some may argue that the early franchise installments have merrit, I would counter that the Full Moon production team could’ve made the respective series more memorable by giving the puppets and toys a bit more personality. The cannon fodder in the films is more interesting than the antagonists and both series get old quickly. I think these pint-sized killers are past their expiration date. 

Puppet Master Movies

Victor Crowley

Ah yes, the other Jason Voorhees comes to light. While the atmosphere may be somewhat similar to Friday the 13th, the backstory is all too familiar to horror buffs. While the crazy, over-the-top gore may be a welcome sight to practical effects enthusiasts, the presence and overall characteristics of the killer are nothing to write home about.

Victor Crowley, much like little Jason, is another misunderstood loner ridiculed by unsymapthetic creeps. The set-up for Hatchet is nothing we haven’t seen before and the disfigured look of the killer ain’t much to ponder. 

The first movie had a bit of promise with its star power, off-beat humor, and crazy amounts of blood and guts. But with each sequel, the campy magic goes haywire and the supernatural twists and turns make less and less sense. Going back to the killer himself, there isn’t a lot of evolution to Victor Crowley. At least not in the same way as say Jason Voorhees or Michael Myers. I think it’s high time to bury the hatchet, so to speak. 

The Amityville House

Not sure if this counts as a villain because it’s not a person, but work with me here. This one has some basis in reality and serves as a bit of a change of pace from our previous entries. Based on a novel written by Jay Anson, which in turn is based on a real-life family murder case that happened in Long Island, New York, this series seems like a one-trick pony with a plot that is familiar yet mildly amusing.

It was like Poltergeist before Poltergeist was a thing, with the first installment being released way back in 1979. But I felt like the Amityville Horror house and all of its countless, mindless sequels need to be put on blast for their transgressions. It seems like the studio pumped out sequels to cash in on the idea. And because you can’t trademark the name of a town, a series of knock-offs further muddied the waters. 

However, my main gripe with the villain itself is that, for some reason, these movies continue to me made making with very little continuity in sight, and the house doesn’t offer anything new. This oversaturation of the haunted house horror subgenre can ooze green slime from its walls for all I care. Those types of tricks don’t impress me much. The rent was overdue yesterday and now it’s time to move out.

The Children of the Corn

The Children of the Corn, based on a novel by legendary and sometimes meme-worthy horror author Stephen King and originally helmed by director Fritz Kiersch, would have to be among the most egregious of this entire list. That is merely for the merit that they’re mostly just kids who sometimes do creepy stuff with their cultish antics. 

Hell, even the original Isaac and Malachai characters were hardly intimidating. The former just cries to Mama when he gets put on the chopping block by the rest of his mutinous crew of corn-fed rejects; Meanwhile, the latter kind of just likes to yell at outsiders and looks like he belongs in a grunge band. Anyway, these little villains just exist to serve the corn curse or whatever and the flavor of the week installments in this long-forsaken franchise do nothing to make these guys any more remarkable than an average middle or high school classroom. 

The first flick had the acting graces of Linda Hamilton and co. Also, there was still some novelty to the concept and characters in spite of the shoddy effects. But by this point, the long-running franchise has had sequels numbering around a dozen. By all means, I’d advise one just leave these children in the cornfield where they belong and let nature take its course…provided there’s no CPS in that remote part of fictional Nebraska.

Children of the Corn - Wicked Horror - Kids in Field

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