Top 5 Animated Disney Movies!

Today, the Top 5 ventures into super-heated territory…peoples favorite animated Disney movies. Think about it already…how do you narrow down your favorite Disney movies to a list of just 5? And then you need to RANK those five? I have a feeling men’s lists will be different than women’s list, and members of my generation will have different thoughts than older adults or younger kids.

Disney produced it’s first movie, Snow White and the Seven Dwarves back in 1937. That is two years before WWII started. The Chicago Cubs had only gone 30 years without a World Series win at this point. It followed with 14 movies in the 1940’s and took off from there. But Disney started to lose its way in the following years as far as animated features goes. They produced a ton of movies but almost all of them were live action until they had a breakthrough in 1989. The movie that came out then, of course, was The Little Mermaid. They decided to make the Little Mermaid like an animated Broadway musical, and it became a commercial and criticle success over night, becoming the highest grossing animated film ever and was nominated for three Academy Awards and won 2. This era was called The Disney Renaissance.

The Disney renaissance ran from 1989 to about 1999 with the movie Tarzan. The movies in this era cost Disney a total of $613 million and grossed $3,940,918,658. As a whole, they got 10 oscars (24 nominations) and had four soundtrack albums hit the top 10 of the US charts, two reaching number one. Let us just say this era was WILDLY successful for Disney.

So, how do you possibly pick 5? Today, my sister Lindsay and I try to do just that. Lindsay is my other twin sister (Katie wrote awhile back about her favorite TV and Movie teachers on this site). Lindsay graduated from UW-O this past year and currently works for an ad agency in Phoenix, AZ. She has a website featuring her wonderful art here: http://lindsayleinenkugel.wordpress.com/

1. Beauty and the Beast- “THEE Disney Classic” You don’t get much more Disney than Beauty and the Beast unless it’s Cinderella, and lets face it…no one likes her as a princess…she’s blonde and annoying. ‘Brunettes have more fun’ holds true in Beauty and the Beast. Thanks for keeping it real and representing, Belle. Plus, Gaston eats RAW eggs…which is sort of awesome.

Belle and the Beast

2. Mulan- I truly believe Mulan is the most underrated and the second- best Disney movie ever. The classic princess is given a badass persona as she replaces petty melo-drama like cleaning houses and kissing princes with honoring her family and saving her elderly fathers life…and she STILL gets the man in the end. TOTAL BAMF. Mulan also has the best line right at the end of the movie. When the hot stud warrior visits Mulan’s household. Mulan offers “would you like to stay for dinner?” Mulan’s quirky grandmother yells out “would you like to stay forever?!?!” As a kid, I laughed at that. As an adult, I theoretically die inside thinking about it. (Editors note: IF you get goosebumps at the end of Return of the King when Aragorn says to the 4 hobbits, “My friends, you bow to no one”, Mulan has a moment very similar that will also give you goosebumps.)

Mulan

3. Peter Pan-  Everything about Peter Pan is completely amazing. As a kid you want to be on Peter’s adventures with him as he sets foot in Neverland. Of course, as a girl, you picture yourself as Wendy and your first crush ever in your life inevitably becomes Peter himself. Disney movies were just so much better in the 50’s. There weren’t the rules and ethics involved like there are now, allowing Disney to create all sorts of memorable adventures for kids.

Peter Pan and Tinker Bell

4. Lilo and Stitch- Walt Disney outdid itself with this amazing animated movie. The Hawaiian islands come alive with the real life animations and authentic Hawaiian music. The movie brings true emotion to the viewers with a good plot and engaging storyline- even for an alien movie!

Lilo and Stitch

5.  Rescuers- Down Under. Just a good childhood flick. Scary, suspenseful, warm, inviting, shocking and the cutest little mice I ever did see.

The Rescuers

Ok, good list sister. Full Disclosure: This was honestly a really hard list for me to make. I wrote out a list and before even stopping to look I had 10 movies that should all be on this list. Disney movies have a pretty big impact on my life (as I am sure most people have stories and memories of them). They do encourage us to dream big and shoot for the stars and yada yada yada, and that is power on a young mind. So, with that said, I am really sorry to movies I left off this list. Here we go:

5. Hunchback of Notre Dame – Perhaps a Dark Horse, this movie was awfully dark. Despite having the voice of George Costanza as one of the gargoyles, this movie from start to finish is probably the darkest movie Disney has ever made. It has a Roman Catholic feel to it as the main villain, a religious man, hunts down and kills gypsies. The messages of different is bad and don’t judge a book by its cover are incredibly strong throughout the movie, but also seeing what greed, corruption and obsession can do is really powerful for young minds. I implore anyone out there to give this movie another chance.

The Hunchback isn’t as evil as he seems…

4. Pocahontas – The new world and British exploriation of the New World is my favorite time during our history. The Native American culture has always fascinated me. Anyone that knows me could probably tell you that. Pocahontas has some incredible themes as far as a Disney movie goes. Themes such as sharing, war, racism, ownership, and the term ‘savage’. Think about that. There is no war between humans in other Disney movies. Usually it is the hero vs the mythical villain, but in Pocahontas it is human vs human. Those are heavy issues to throw into a kids movie. (Also, this movie is still better than Avatar…YEA I SAID IT!)

Who would want to attack her?!

3. Lion King – I would be remiss if I left out the Lion King. The Lion King is Disney’s most successful movie, grossing $961 million all time at the box office. Watching it, you can’t help but run the spectrum of emotions. In 2 hours, you grow up with Simba and feel every triumph and success he has. You feel childish as he sings I just can’t wait to be King, you feel terrified with him as the wildebeest come crashing down on him, and you tear up as Mufasa perishes. You meet his new friends as he is in exile, you fall in love as he does, and you cheer as he runs back to Pride Rock. The Lion King puts forth to young minds the idea of destiny. Simba was BORN to be king. It was his Destiny. And jeez, I haven’t even touched on Scar as a villain yet. Holy Hitler references! The faith and the fear of letting people you care about down are all touched on in this movie as well. Thank god for Rafiki setting Simba straight…

I would love to hang out with Timone and Pumba for a day.

2. Aladdin – Oh Aladdin. Perhaps my favorite male character in a Disney movie, Aladdin is just fun. A daring street rat just trying to survive, finds a magic lamp and his fortunes change. But with power can come corruption. And we see Aladdin forced to choose between his word and the life he could have with Jasmine. Ultimately, Aladdin does what is right; defeats Jafar, frees the Genie and still gets the girl…who, by the way, has a PET TIGER! Awesome.

I bet you could win any girl’s heart if you had a Magic Carpet too.

1. Little Mermaid – My favorite Disney movie as a child, and still the only Disney movie I own on a real DVD. The movie that started the whole renaissance that led to every other movie on my list. The tale of someone born into a family who didn’t want to follow in the, well, footsteps of the people that came before her. Ariel believed there was a bigger world out there, she believed there was something MORE out there. Ariel is one of the only Disney characters to actually change her living setting. She follows her dream, leaves everything behind her, finds true love, and actually STAYS with her man. Aladdin never leaves Agrabah. Simba returns home to his “destiny”. Mulan fights and wins a war, but returns home. Even Wendy leaves Neverland! Not Ariel. She explores the world, takes on the evil Ursula, finds he true love, marries him, and continues on with her life of exploration. The movie also shows that beauty is on the inside (Although most men might argue it would be nice if a woman couldn’t talk for three days). Ariel, you are my hero. Keep on breaking out. You can be part of my world any day!

I don’t usually do this, but I want to give some heads up to some other movies and characters. To Mulan for being the ULTIMATE Disney badass. Not only does she destroy gender roles in her movie, she shows that even a single grain of rice can tip the scales. If I was a feminist leader, Mulan would be my symbol. Peter Pan for making every kid dream a little bit bigger and answering “what makes the red man red” (seriously, I guess racism wasn’t an issue back in 1953).  Robin Hood for showing that maybe there is honor in stealing. Keep on oo-da-lallying buddy. And Bernard and Bianca for showing us that real love isn’t a kiss that wakes people up from a slumber, it’s experiencing the best moments in life with one another and realizing that there is no one else you would rather be within those moments.

That does it for today. Good luck guys, I totally understand how tough this list can be to make. Do your best and share it down below in the comments section!

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Top 5 Moments You Became a Man/Woman!

Today, we are going to try something new here at the Top 5. For the first time since this site started, I will not be writing a list. Instead, two different writers wrote about the same topic, and since they are so similar, I am putting them together.

Today, there will be a list about the top 5 moments a woman became a woman by Kyla Morris. She is the third gal from the Once A Month blog that has written for this site. I met Kyla back in college and shared many of my classes with her. We have both since moved out to LA and are pursuing careers in TV. You can find her blog here: http://onceamonth4ladies.com/

My mother is responsible for teaching me that ladies always come first, so Kyla’s list is up:

1.   #1  Period. That’s right and pretty obvious. The first time you take down your panties and you realize you are bleeding from a place you never have before. Some of us were terrified, others completely okay with it and went about their day as normal. I think for me my mom was more excited then I was. I’m pretty sure I had a nice size ring around my butt from sitting on the toilet so long because when my “friend” came to visit… Mom had me sit on the toilet as she told me about the…birds….and the bees, for hours.

2.     #2 Hello Boobies! Remember the scene from Now & Then when Teeny fills her water balloons with pudding to have some boobs?  Yup, no need for the Kleenex, water balloons, fake fruit, real fruit, socks, baseballs, softballs, or anything else round. You’ve got a pair of your own and now are forced to strap them in while in public for the rest of your life! Yippee!!! Boobs. #2.

Did Caprica 6 have to grow those or was she built with them?

3.   #3  Hairy legs no more! For awhile as a youngster every little girl has to bear a little hair on her legs until she’s given the golden opportunity to shave it all off! As a kiddo I used to pretend to shave. I had a comb and shaving cream and would go about my business in the bathtub fake shaving along. As a grown woman, we are bound by the razor. Too sharp get ready to bleed. To dull get ready for some razor burn. Watch for the knees and don’t get too close to the ankles. Ever try shaving in a stand up shower? Yeah-nice try commercials — it doesn’t work that easily or elegantly.

Shaving legs

4.     #4 Kiss. The first one – -(Not the chicken peck behind the curly slide in elementary school.) From my gal pals and mine experiences; it’s never the best one. No fireworks, promise. It’s awkward, there’s spit, and silky tongue action involved. Some people go to fast while others go too slow. Some people think making it out is just tiny peck kisses all together. Others jack hammer their tongue in your mouth so fast you want to stop and punch them in the face. No one knows how to do it the first time around, but it’s still obviously a sign that you’re turning in to a lady when you catch the first one!

This magic moment…

5.     #5 Older boys hit on you… and it may be in the creepy way – or a not so creepy way (is there such a thing if their 15 years older and you’re 14? The answer is yes). Some guys can’t gauge age- at all. I was in the 7th grade and my friend had a birthday party. This tall guy, a little shadow of facial hair (not because he shaved but because he couldn’t grow much facial hair) asked me to slow dance to “My Heart Will Go On”. He was older, much older, high school at the time (not exactly 15 years older, but still…) While we were arms length apart and his hands barely rested on my hips, he asked what grade I was in… to his surprise I will still taking math with Mr. What’s-his-name in middle school. This was an automatic “oh… oops” moment. And I proceeded to get a little creeped out that he could drive a car and I barely had my period.

Awesome Kyla. Way to represent the women out there! Now for the men. The top 5 list provided by friend of the site Sam Mark:

Sam has written for this site before. He wrote about his favorite NFL players not on his favorite team. He is a funny guy and has prepared a wonderfully true and honest list with a dash of hysterically funny moments. He has a blog that he writes for and his dad illustrates that you can find here: http://likefatherlikesoncomics.wordpress.com/

I thought this idea was funny, so I wanted to try to make it legit, while also comical;

1. First Hair On Body

Up until this point, the male species had been smoother than a hard boiled egg.  It’s until that one day where you look at yourself in the mirror, naked, and say, “Woa. What the hell is that? Is that… A HAIR!?”  Suddenly, that one hair means you’re tapping back into your neanderthal roots of clubbing dinosaurs with your mitts.*  The old idiom of doing something will “put hair on your chest” has always been synonymous with becoming a man.  Granted, the hair could be anywhere, it’s the beginning of something more grandiose.  It’s life’s small bar mitzvah.  That ONE hair suddenly has inspired an entire belief system of manliness.  Even if you think yourself the lowest of the low, no potential to be a man, that one hair is life’s most encouraging pubescent moment.  You were a boy yesterday, but this hair sprouted and saluted you saying, “From this day forward, you are a man.”

2. Losing Your Virginity

We live in a world where sex is everywhere.  It may not be full out porn at every corner, but our society LOVES to push sex on us, because it stirs so many feelings and emotions within us.    Our “sexy” society aside, we may have (a) hair on our body, but the idea of sex is incredibly powerful for a virgin male.  I won’t refute that women don’t ALSO have the same desire as virgins, but JUST LET ME FINISH.

I was a big fan of Tex Avery and Looney Tunes growing up.  I always thought my friends and I acted like those cartoon characters, with their tongues out and steam shooting out of our ears, when ever we were sexually attracted to somebody.  Not to mention, the junior high/high school locker rooms are more foul than any rated R movie I’ve ever seen.  Initially, sex for men, is this ideology that we’re conquering our sexual partner.  “I’m so gonna fuck ____.”  “____’s so easy, it’ll be no sweat boning ____.”  “I’ma gonna get me some-a that ASS.” (I’m pretty sure people said these things)  But, in all honesty, we say these things, because we’re incredibly terrified.  We need to stroke our egos, because we’re ashamed and tired of how often we stroke something else.

The whole process of sex with someone is so complicated, which makes it no surprise why there are over a million books on sex alone.**  Our instinctual mentality is, “Deposit seed. NEXT!”  But, we’re obviously advanced creatures, we live in a society with rules, and can’t simply act on our primal desires without being charged for sexual crimes.  Part of this process in becoming a man, is accepting and being incredibly overjoyed with the idea that, “My God. This person WANTS to have sex with ME. ME.”  So, whatever happens to put you in the right mood, the big moment comes (no pun intended).  Suddenly, you’re not sure what is happening.  You’re judging yourself and your partner immediately: “Wait, is it supposed to feel like this? Why aren’t they doing this?  Why aren’t I doing that?  Should we have talked about this?  Damnit, and I missed that Rambo marathon.  Well, it might be on later.  What am I doing later? Will I still be here trying to figure out what the hell I’m–” And then it’s over.  You’re no longer a virgin.  You settle down next to your partner, look at them in the eyes, and believe everything in the world is possible.  We just DID that. I am a MAN!

40 Year-Old Virgin

3.  Win Competitively at Anything.

Men are a competing breed.  Male Big Horn Sheep develop horns so they can run at each other, up to 20 miles an hour, to butt heads with another male, all to just establish dominance.***  That’s commitment.  Men will always seek something to establish dominance over another.  Take me.  I once built a castle made entirely of cardboard bricks back in kindergarten.  Nick Paulson knocked it over, so I did what any 6-year-old would do: bit his arm.  Did I get escorted to the nurse’s office with Nick Paulson, where the nurse told me, “If you had broken the skin, I wouldn’t have been able to treat this,” and then have to call my parents and told them I bit another kid?  Yes.  But, did Nick Paulson ever bother me when I had my hands on some cardboard bricks? You damn well better believe he didn’t.  Granted, it was a shaming moment in my life and don’t condone violence, but I think instinctively, it was my first bout establishing dominance.

It wasn’t a coincidence that my parents signed me up for soccer shortly afterwards.  I was tall and big for my age group, so I dribbled that soccer ball like I was a tank driving through a My Little Pony tea party.  That was all the way until 7th grade, when everyone around me was faster, more agile, and skillful than me.  My competitive edge was lost.  Enter, football.  Played it from 8th grade to 22 years old, and I felt like a man every time I tackled somebody, made a huge block, or made a catch (I’m 3/4 in my passing career, with about 80 yards.)  Even that parenthetical is an attempt to prove to you, I’m better than you.  But, it doesn’t have to be sports related.

Wit, in my opinion, is the ultimate pinnacle of winning competitively.  You could be stronger, bigger, more handsome than me.  But, the sharpness of wit is a powerful weapon in competing.  Gladiators fought to the death with sword and shield.  My friends and I move plastic pieces on cardboard maps, fighting for strategic dominance over one another.  This is an instinctual part of man that when you realize you’re good at something, you want those around you to know it.

That, folks, is not just a participation trophy.

4.  Having your first beer.

I blame advertising for this one.  The sensationalism of beer has sky rocketed over the past 20 years.  That’s not a bad thing, per say, but I still have “AND THE TWIIIIIIIIINS” stuck in my head.  But, it’s hard not to be part of a social gathering without beer being present.  Maybe that’s the effect of the advertising, but it all comes down to your first beer.

You’re surrounded by propaganda about how beer will make your social life amazing, but if you have too much of it, you’ll be on a M.A.D.D. poster, resembling smashed spaghetti.  There’s definitely a thrill, but fear about your first beer.  I, admittedly, tasted beer at an early age and remember thinking, “This is disgusting.”  But, I think during later years of high school or the start of college, I had my first beer.  A Grain Belt Premium.  It’s a Minnesota beer, coined “the beer of exceptional quality” and “the Friendly Beer.”  I believe I had gotten together with friends for poker and took a sip from the glass bottle.  And it tasted like golden joy.  Perhaps it was the collection of hairs on my chest that made it taste so good.  Or perhaps, it was the feeling that, “Hell, I’m drinking a beer.  I’m a GOD DAMN MAN.”

“How much is that Grainbelt?!”
“$9.50”
“Jeez, why dont you just punch me in my face” – Cousin CJ at Target Field

5.  Defending Your Beliefs

A man is only good as his word.  If his word is a shaky, hesitated, squeak… well, that’s very telling of who the man is to the world.  The moment you stand up for someone, speak your mind with confidence and bravado, or simply act in the name of justice, these are defining moments of becoming a man.  I, unfortunately, didn’t have very epic “defend your belief” moments growing up in the midwest as a white male.  Surprising, right?  But, in college, a friend of mine and I were at a video game tournament.  I’m a nerd and I will defend that to my death.  But, my friend was playing another guy at the tournament, when suddenly his character died and he replied, “God, that level just Jew-ed me.”

Now, in case you don’t know, I am not Jewish.  But, my girlfriend is, so I couldn’t just not defend her honor AND my belief in equality.  I piped in.

“I’m sorry, what did you just say?”

“That level.  It totally Jew-ed me.”

I’d like to say I spun his bean bag chair around, grabbed him by the collar, put his nose up against mine and said, “NOT IN MY TOWN,” then defenestrated him (look it up).  What I did say was,

“Well, I’m Jewish.”

I was still looking at the back of this guy’s head, but I could tell that all the blood from his face drained.

“You are?” he squeaked.

“Yeah,” I retorted, “what you said was really offensive.”

He collapsed in apologies and ultimately, was so rocked by the experience, my friend ended up beating him and advancing in the tournament.  While both of us didn’t win anything in the video game tournament, I considered that experience a victory in my being a man.

Who held the controller like that?!

*(Don’t you dare fight me on this historically inaccurate statement.)

** (I’m sure this is true. I just didn’t want to actually find out if it was true.)

*** (This is true.  I looked it up.  Very interesting stuff.)

What are your top 5 coming of age moments? Write them down in our comments!

Top 5 Board Games to Play!

Today’s topic is the top 5 board games! Board games have certainly advanced with age. I remember playing Sorry with my father and he would make the same jokes every damn time. Now I play much more advanced board games, but the concepts are still the same. An activity with friends or family that provides healthy competition as well as a ton of fun.

Today’s guest lister is Adam Boucher. He is a friend of mine that went to UW-Oshkosh but I never met him until I moved out to California. He is a fellow gamer. While we don’t play card based games, the two of us tend to battle in board games. I consider him a most worthy adversary and he has opened my eyes to new games and new strategies. I love playing against him. Adam also has his own web page, you can visit it here: http://urbancharlie.wordpress.com

Here is Adam’s top 5 list of his favorite board games:

5. Last Night on Earth – It has scenarios, encourages co-operative play and creative thinking, and expansions. Despite some people saying the rules are broken, my fellow players and I have always had fun with it.

Last Night on Earth

4. Bootleggers –  Head- to-head play with collusion and deal making encouraged, historical setting, easy to set up and play. Simple rules and simple execution.

Bootleggers

3. Battlestar Galactica – Playing includes team strategy and deductive reasoning, plus a lot of accusing and finger pointing. Also, I like the setting.

Battlestar Galactica

2. Arkham Horror – I like AH for a lot of the same reasons as  LNoE. Just a different flavor. The biggest difference between the two is that all players are on the same side.

1. Heroscape – This game is pretty open ended. You can play teams, or head-to-head. You can draft an army or prebuild one. It has built in scenarios or you can make your own. You can make your own maps. It’s out of print, but with the right amount of cash or creativity, new adventures are always right around the corner. Plus, I have sentimental reasons for this one. I can’t look at the the blue container it’s stored in and not think of my good friend, Tom, who I don’t get to see often enough, and I miss him all the time.

Heroscape

Here are my top 5 Board games (since Adam did his in descending order, I will do mine that way as well):

5. StarCraft – You might be thinking, “Why play a board game that is based off a computer game and you could just play the computer game easier?”…Well, the answer is simple: StarCraft could be modeled after anything really, because the game itself is sound. It is a lot of fun, the mechanics of placing orders and moving troops and building are all awesome. It tends to get a tad clunky with fighting, but most of the time it works out just fine. The games tend to be a little longer, but once you get the hang of the turn structure, the games can fly.

4. Small World – This is a really fun and really silly game. You basically take fantasy races like Hobbits, Trolls, elves, Giants, or skeletons (to name a few) and you conquer places on a map to collect gold. But the map itself is super small, so you are always stepping on the toes of other players. It gets crowded quickly and people tend to hold grudges. The game moves super-fast and can be played in about 30 minutes.

Smallworld

3. Battlestar Galactica – My favorite game where everyone starts on the same team, and then peoples alliances, motives and views of one another shift, often times quickly and harshly. In this game, everyone starts out on the same team, and then cards are drawn at random and all of a sudden, there are secret Cylons amongst you. Working in secret, the Cylons try to sabatoge the human players before the humans find out who they are. It becomes a race against time, resources and each other as everyone is a suspect and tempers tend to flare. A truly brilliant board game.

2. Sorry – Sentimental reasons, this was the game of choice in the Leinenkugel household. It is easier than Monopoly, shorter than Risk and easily playable by a kid over a game like Scrabble. For some reason my father really liked this game and I can still see him drawing a card and studying the words on it. Then he would carefully count out the number of squares in front of his pawn with his finger before going back, getting the pawn and bouncing one of my tokens back to the start. He would then look up, smile with that know-it-all grin as if he planned everything and would say, “Sorry”. He was so proud of himself in those moments.

1. Game of Thrones – Set on the continent of Westros, This game is my favorite because of how it is set up. It is a game that has almost zero luck factor. Almost everything that happens can be controlled one way or the other. Every choice that you need to make will affect the outcome of the turn, and then the game. This means that when you win or lose it was because of choices you and the other players playing made. It has all the strategy of Risk, the secretiveness of Battlestar, the suspense of StarCraft and the politics of, well, the politics seem to be unmatched in any other game I have played thus far. Also, the game itself really isn’t that hard to pick up once you start playing.

Game of Thrones

My honorable mention would have to be Star Wars Epic Duels. It is a super fun, fast moving game set in the Star Wars universe.

There are two lists for top 5 board games! What is your list? Leave it down below and feel free to discuss ours lists!

Top 5 Favorite Super Villains!

Welcome today to the Top 5. Today we explore the counterpart to our Super Heroes, the super villains.  A point that was made back in the Super Heroes article was that our Heroes a lot of the time rely on their villains to be cool. Is Batman really all that cool if he doesn’t have the Joker as his primary villain?

America has been really interested and invested in anti-heroes as of late…people like Tony Soprano and Dexter on TV that follow morally questionable people doing terrible things, and yet we still cheer for them. The cool part about heroes and villains is that there is a set good and evil. A light side and a dark side so to speak. It is cut and dry without much grey area and sometimes that is a good thing.

Today, my friend Mike Heyer is back to do the villains list. Like last time, Mike has a far better grasp of the comic book world of things than I do (Which is to say he truly does, despite the fact I know NOTHING about comics). Mike also has a cool blog you should check out here. You can find it here: http://mikeandrobertvtm.com/

Here is what Mike has to say and his top 5:

Some of these picks involve spoilers for their respective comics.  If you care about that, go read the books instead of this list.

1. The Joker – Probably the single scariest villain I’ve ever read in all of comics.  The Joker is vile, unpredictable and lacks any sort of moral code.  I’m not talking about the villain from the animated series of the 90’s or the comics from the golden age; I’m talking about the Joker made famous by Heath Ledger.  A ruthless psychopath that does things because he wants to and no other reason.  In a comic called “The Killing Joke” the Joker not only shoots Barbra Gordon (the commissioners daughter), but also then kidnaps Commissioner Gordon and tortures him with photos of his daughters injured body.  That’s one sick $*@!.  He constantly taunts Batman to kill him, knowing full well he wont and in the process has been responsible for some of the most evil acts in comics.  I love every panel where he gets punched.

The Joker

2.  The Governor – If the Joker didn’t exist, this guy would easily move into the number one spot on my list.  Walking Dead has seen a substantial amount of bad S*#& happen to it’s primary characters, but nothing had the impact of the good ol’ Governor slicing Rick’s arm off simply to show who was boss, not to mention what he did to Michonne.  Even after the characters escape and the Governor is mutilated, he returns with a vengeance, assaulting the heroes prison home and making for an even WORSE existence for Rick Grimes and co.  On top of everything else, he keeps his zombie daughter chained up, toothless, feeding her meat and treating her like a pet.  Those who’ve read the books know where he ends up, lets hope season three of the TV goes the same route.  But, if the books are any indication, the show is going to get darker come October.

The Governor

3. Omni-Man – Two Robert Kirkman creations in a row, this guy knows how to write bad guys (if you don’t know who he is, stop reading this list and go throw a football around, it’d be better for you).  Imagine Superman, same powers set and everything, had a son who as a teenager was just discovering his abilities, then imagine that Superman reveals that he wasn’t on Earth to protect the planet, but was prepping it for an army of invading aliens.  That’s Omni-Man.  Sucks, right?  Invincible, the hero of the book…Invincible…gets into a knock down drag out fight with his dad, killing thousands and leaving the younger super-being bloody and broken.  Leaving in a moment of sentimentality, Omni-Man leaves a shattered world behind.  Invincible copes best he can, but his Mom becomes a full-blown alcoholic when the truth comes out about her husband.  What a jerk.

Omni-Man

4.  The Saint of Killers – In Preacher, if the angels of Heaven need someone dead, they call this guy.  John Wayne if John Wayne was evil as sin, the Saint wakes from a tomb on Earth and begins to murder absolutely everything he sees on his hunt for Preacher Jesse.  Carrying twin revolvers that never miss their mark, the Saint takes on all comers, even an entire US Army division.  A backstory comic reveals that he was too full of hate for Hell and was cast out after shooting the devil in the head.  I didn’t even think you could do that…Not only is he immortal and badass, but he’s a man of few words, which is very hard to pull off in comics.  If Preacher wasn’t an awesome read before this guy, it sure was after he showed up.

The Saint of Killers

5. Venom – The only villain on this list who is here because of nostalgia, I was introduced to Venom early in my comic reading life.  His abilities were really close to Spiderman, so he loses points for originality, but he makes up for it in attitude and style.  Over the years, writers and artists have picked up on the fan base of the character and kept him fresh and just as cool to look at as he was when he first caused trouble for the web-slinger.  It should also be noted that Venom spawned Carnage, who is even MORE crazier that he is, but since I already have a wide variety of psychos on this list, I figure Venom the better choice.

Venom

A most evil list, indeed. And I would wager that a lot of people were just educated on what villains that aren’t dumbed down or neutered for mass media can REALLY do…Here is my list:

1. The Joker – Well, from the moment I saw the first Batman at my aunt Kate’s house, The Joker was the man. The scary dude. There was something as a three year old that didn’t compute with him. My little mind couldn’t possibly grasp the fact that this guy was getting punched and not only not getting hurt, he was LAUGHING! And it didn’t stop there, he was doing really mean things. He kidnapped a woman, he destroyed a museum, and he killed his best friend and he wasn’t sad, he was LAUGHING! As I grew up, I realized how scary that is. There is nothing more sinister than someone who just laughs at violence, whether to others or to himself. How do you hurt someone that doesn’t care? How do you defeat someone that can always cross lines and go further than you? These are all things Batman had to deal with and they are all questions that bring out the best in Batman in the end and make us like him more.

Clowns aren’t supposed to be scary…

2. Magneto – Alright, maybe he isn’t the flashiest guy in the world, but I like him for one reason…he wants to turn non mutants into mutants. He wants to fight for the rights of mutants. And listen, if you can give me a cool power, I am all for that. Plus, the guy is bitter and angry and he can cut you with a kitchen knife without leaving a print. The ability to control metal at first might sound sort of lame, but then you realize you could just stand on a sewer cap and use it as a flying carpet and I think you would be ok with it.

Magneto

3. Shredder – YES! Good ol’ Shredder. The ninja who is always bested by 4 teenage kids with a case of being green. Shredder is sort of goofy because he takes orders himself, but he is the face of evil in the TMNT stories. He lost his way and decided to take out his former friend, now Splinter and became OBSESSED with destroying the Turtles. Obsession is a scary thing to me. When people become obsessed with something and can’t function outside of that obsession, that is when people get hurt or killed. And although the Ninja Turtles are best known for their animated series, go back and watch the first TMNT movie. It deals with really heavy issues and is super dark and not cheery at all. Shredder and his lack of caring for anything else other than hurting the Turtles makes this list as the model of obsession.

The Shredder

4. Two Face – This guy is on this list because he was such a good guy to begin with and so close to cleaning up Gotham, and then had a tremendous fall from grace. His own personal demons just got the better of him in the end and he developed a split personality that he just couldn’t control. Someone at odds with himself, someone keeping alive in his head at all times two completely contradicting ideas is bound to go crazy if he isn’t strong enough to hold them, and that is what happened. A man who was so blinded and unable to tell any longer as to what was good and evil that he required a coin flip to hold the fate of every choice he made. When things are left to chance, it is terrifying. If someone flipped a coin for your life, when that coin is in the air would probably be the scariest moment of your life…or whatever was left of it if it came up wrong.

Two Face

5. Catwoman – Alright, maybe she is not even a villain. She is super tame compared to everyone else, but was anyone really disappointed with Anne Hathaway as Catwoman in The Dark Knight Rises? Whew.

Hathaway as Catwoman is far superior to the others. YEA I SAID IT!

Who makes your top 5 for Super Villains? Join in with your list and comments below!

What House Would You Belong to at Hogwarts?

Hogwarts

First year wizards at Hogwarts are sorted into different magical houses upon arriving at the school for the first time. If you had to sit on the stool and wear the hat, where would he put you? Gryffindor, Slytherin, Hufflepuff or Ravenclaw? Let us know why in the comments below!

The Four Houses of Hogwarts.

The Dark Knight Rises: Like or Dislike?

What did you guys think of the final installment in the Dark Knight series? Let us know your reasons in the comments!