Who Is the Best 'Star Wars' Villain of All Time? (Hint: It's Not This Guy)

There is no shortage of bad guys in the Star Wars universe: A huge cast of characters — from Darth Vader to lowly clone stormtrooper TK-421 — who fight on the side of darkness. But who among them is the baddest of the bad? The worst of the worst? The villain we most love to hate?

Star Wars Darth Sideous Emperor
Star Wars Darth Sideous Emperor

Darth Sidious (aka the Emperor) tops the list, compiled by the experts at StarWars.com

The staff of StarWars.com took a stab at answering that question and came up with what we think is a very reasonable and well-thought out roster of candidates. Topping their list: Emperor Palpatine (aka Darth Sidious). Makes sense to us. He’s the head honcho, pulling the strings, responsible in many ways for Anakin Skywalker’s ultimate downfall. Plus, he’s really creepy looking: while we know it’s not wise to judge a book by its cover, one look at Sidious and you know he’s up to no good.

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Following the Emperor, Star Wars staffers placed Darth Vader in the number-two slot, followed by Grand Moff Tarkin (a.k.a., the guy with the “foul stench”). Here’s their complete list:

1. Darth Sidious/Emperor Palpatine
2. Darth Vader
3. Grand Moff Tarkin
4. Darth Maul
5. Jabba the Hutt
6. Count Dooku
7. General Grievous
8. Asajj Ventress
9. Nute Gunray 
10. Pong Krell

But, but, but! What about Boba Fett! Where is he? How could they forget Boba Fett?!?! Relax. This was no oversight: Staffers plan to release a separate list of their top ten bounty hunters. We’ve got a feeling he’ll be at the top.

Star Wars Boba Fett
Star Wars Boba Fett

Away put your weapon! Boba Fett will appear on an upcoming list

For the sake of argument, though, let’s say Boba Fett was included in the above list. Where would he place? In his favor: He plays by his own rules, utters only cool lines (“He’s no good to me dead”), and isn’t afraid of anything. On the minus side — he meets his end (in Return of the Jedi) in a most undignified manner (as you can see below).

That said, we feel comfortable placing Fett in the spot ahead of Jabba. A solid showing. We could see him ahead of Maul, but Maul went out with a bang. Fett went out with a whimper. The best bad guys don’t do that.

*This post has been corrected since its original publication.

Photos: StarWars.com