Villains in sci-fi movies have an advantage over your regular Joe bad guy from off the tough streets of New York. Sci-fi baddies can be cybernetically enhanced, with robotic and other parts adding to their general menacing aura.
Darth Vader was kind of a big jerk as Anakin Skywalker, but add in his imposing and life-sustaining black armor and he's a force to be fled from. And Agent Smith in "The Matrix" seemed like a meanie when we thought he was a human, but he jacked up the scary level once we saw him twisting and dodging bullets and realized what he really was.
SolarWinds, a provider of IT management software, decided to determine the deadliest cybernetic villain of all time, and set about watching a space-ton of movies to decide the ranking.
It turns out Neo can relax, Agent Smith really isn't as deadly as he seems. In Smith's 57 minutes of screen time in the "Matrix" trilogy, he only kills two people, while "Blade Runner" baddie Roy Batty kills the same number of people in just 22 minutes. (Plus, he's "seen things you people wouldn't believe"!)
The analysis included such contenders as HAL 9000 from "2001: A Space Odyssey," the T-800 and T-1000 from the "Terminator" franchise and creepy android Ash from "Alien." The site took into account total kills, lines spoken, and screen time to determine the deadliest cybervillain.
And the winner? A 40,000-ton beast from Japan that can spin its head all the way around and launch missiles from its fingers, toes and knees, and energy beams from its eyes and chest.
It's Mechagodzilla, the 1974 Godzilla doppelganger who may not win for lines spoken (chatty Darth Vader tops that list), but soared off the charts as far as kills, racking up 9 million deaths in the movie "Terror of Mechagodzilla" alone. (It may have been awhile since a Mechagodzilla movie played American cinemas, but fans of "South Park" need only to think of the "Mecha-Streisand" episode to get the idea.)
The site's analysis also notes that not all cybervillains are bad all the way through. Darth Vader redeems himself in the end, and so does Mechagodzilla, who's rebuilt to be a protector of cities instead of destroying them. But that can't be said for those who start out in the middle, like HAL of "2001."
"Those that start neutral, however, seem to choose to turn against their human creators," the site notes. "Thankfully, they've also got a habit for not making it to the end of the film."