Seated Walder Frey points at a scared young girl in "Game of Thrones"

The Most Evil Characters to Ever Terrify Us on ‘Game of Thrones’

The worst of the worst

Some would argue that people, at their core, are fundamentally good. Anyone who’s never been to Westeros, that is. These Game of Thrones characters aren’t just bad, they’re the literal WORST. The pinnacle of evil. Here they are, ranked to the evilest.

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10. Viserys Targaryen

Viserys Targaryen looks confused at something offscreen in "Game of Thrones"

Viserys Targaryen is a total scumbag but is the lowest-ranking character on this list of the worst because he never actually did many evil things. He had evil intentions, but his effect on the world was miniscule at best. He married Dany off to Khal Drogo and didn’t care if the man or his horselords murdered her. He threatened to kill her unborn child. He threatened Targaryen fire and blood on his enemies, but in the end, he died with nothing to show for it but a hat made of gold. He was worth more dead than alive.

9. Theon Greyjoy

Theon Greyjoy in Game of Thrones

Theon Greyjoy was a really cool dude who became a really bad dude who became a pretty cool dude again. But when he was a bad dude, he was a really bad dude. Theon betrayed his beloved adoptive brother Robb Stark along with the rest of his foster family when he rose up against Winterfell and took over the castle. Then he murdered two innocent small folk boys and hung their mutilated remains on the castle walls in an attempt to pass them off as the two youngest Stark boys. He was well on the way to the worst when someone even further down this list humbled him back to the ways of good.

8. Walder Frey

Seated Walder Frey points at a scared young girl in "Game of Thrones"

Walter Frey is the worst kind of person in Game of Thrones. He committed a cultural taboo, one as grave as incest and kinslaying. Walder Frey violated guest right, the ancient custom that states a host cannot harm a guest once that person has eaten food at his table under his roof. In perpetrating the Red Wedding massacre against the Starks and their men, Walter committed one of the greatest possible sins in Westerosi culture. He cursed his own house and his family name to ruin. The name of that ruin? Arya Stark.

7. Peter Baelish

Peter "Littlefinger" Baelish stands in a hallway smirking in "Game of Thrones"

There was absolutely nothing redeemable about Peter Baelish. Zero. Zilch. Nada. He was a snake in the grass from day one, plotting and scheming his way to power with betrayal and murder. He betrayed Eddard Stark, Hand of the King, in order to effectively seat the Lannisters on the Iron Throne. He seduced and then murdered Lysa Arryn in order to steal her lands in The Vale from her. Not to mention he groomed Sansa Stark, being so twisted as to think she would want to be with him after he murdered her father and aunt and brought her family to ruin. Man was deluded, twisted, and totally rotten.

6. Craster

Craster looks menacingly at an offscreen foe in the firelight in "Game of Thrones"

Yuck. Craster. Craster is a cancerous tumor of a person. While his acts of evil didn’t cause the deaths of thousands like some on this list, he managed to make life absolute misery for everyone he knew. Crastor was a Free Folk man who lived North of the wall and was a walking violation of three major cultural taboos: polygamy, incest, and kinslaying. Craster had many wives … many of whom were also his daughters. When one of his wife-daughters had a female child, he would groom the girl to become another one of his wives, with whom he could produce more daughters/wives. Vile. And when he had a baby boy? He would leave it outside for the White Walkers in exchange for his own safety. Double vile. Triple. Quintuple.

5. Gregor Clegane

Gregor Clegane murders a man with a sword in "Game of Thrones"

Gregor “The Mountain” Clegane was the strongest man in Westeros. Perhaps the strongest man in the world. He was portrayed by the hulking Icelandic actor Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson, who stands at 6’9”, but in the Song of Ice and Fire books he is a whopping 8 feet tall, 400lbs. What does he do with all that power? Evil. So much evil. Gregor Clegane is nothing more than a massive dog that the Lannisters sic on their political adversaries. He is a serial rapist and murderer, and is responsible for the death of Princess Elia Martell and her children during the Sack of King’s Landing. Sadly, Elia and her children are only one of likely hundreds who have met a similar fate in his oversized hands.

4. The Mad King

The Mad King Aery II looks suspicious while seating on the Iron Throne in "Game of Thrones"

The Mad King Aery II Targaryen is the reason the Realm went entirely to the dogs. While he started out as a promising young ruler, his kidnapping during the Defiance of Duskendale causes something inside of him to snap, leading him to fully embrace the madness that the Targaryen line is infamous for. Paranoid and cruel, he ordered the deaths of countless political adversaries, including Ned Stark’s father and elder brother. His father’s method of execution Burning people alive. He nearly blew up King’s Landing with wildfire bombs hidden under the city in an “If I can’t be on the Throne, no one can” murder plot, until he was slain by Jamie Lannister. Good riddance.

3. Ramsey Bolton

Ramsey Bolton looking smug standing in front of his army in "Game of Thrones"

Ramsey Bolton was a true psychopath. The legitimized bastard of Roose Bolton, Ramsey was a man who loved the thrill of the hunt. And there was nothing he was more thrilled to hunt than terrified young women. Ramsey would abduct young women, release them into the woods with a head start, and then hunt them down and tear them apart with his dogs. He would name his dogs after women he killed, but only if they provided him with a “good hunt.” He was a sadistic rapist and serial killer, but eventually became food for his own hounds.

2. The Night King

Richard Brake as Night King in Game of Thrones

The Night King wasn’t just bad, wasn’t just evil, he was Death Incarnate. In the Game of Thrones interpretation of the character, The Night King could be argued to be the physical embodiment of The Great Other, god of the White Walkers. The Great Other is a deity of winter, darkness, and death, whose sole desire is to defeat the Lord of Light R’hllor and plunge the world into endless night. The Night King didn’t want to kill anyone in particular, he wanted to kill everyone in particular.

1. Joffery Baratheon

King Joffrey Baratheon looking shocked and outraged in "Game of Thrones"

The Night King may have been the physical embodiment of death itself, but Joffery Baratheon was THE WORST. This kid came out of the womb rotten. He’s a sadistic little psychopath whose depraved actions were responsible EVERYTHING that went wrong in Game of Thrones. If he hadn’t tried to kill the butcher’s boy in episode one, Arya’s dog would never have attacked him, leading to the rift between Lannister and Stark. He capriciously ordered the death of Edward Stark against the wishes of his own family, plunging the Realm into Civil War. He taunted Sansa with the disembodied heads of her dead loved ones. He used women for target practice with his crossbow. He was ignorant, petulant, vain, and malicious. He had no redeeming qualities whatsoever. His death by asphyxiation through poison was far too merciful.

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Jack Doyle
Jack Doyle (they/them) is actually nine choirs of biblically accurate angels crammed into one pair of $10 overalls. They have been writing articles for nerds on the internet for less than a year now. They really like anime. Like... REALLY like it. Like you know those annoying little kids that will only eat hotdogs and chicken fingers? They're like that... but with anime. It's starting to get sad.