The most evil Game Of Thrones characters ranked

The world of Game of Thrones is filled with some of the most devious and disturbing characters in all of TV. Here's a look at the absolute worst of the show.

Chris Hayner
1 of 49 HBO

49. Catelyn Stark

It wasn't easy to determine some of these rankings, but when it comes to the terrible, terrible people on Game of Thrones, all you can do sometimes is your best. Here's our ranking of GoT characters based on evilness -- starting with the not-so-evil.

Catelyn Stark (Michelle Fairley) promised the gods she'd love Jon Snow. She didn't. This may have cursed the whole darn family, and certainly caused undue drama among Jon Snow and his not-half-siblings, ultimately driving him to join the Night's Watch.

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48. Bran Stark

Bran Stark (Isaac Hempstead Wright) has gotten pretty uppity since learning to warg through time and space. From being unnecessarily mean to poor Meera to sitting in silence while his whole family battles the Night King, Bran has definitely dabbled in evil.

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47. Sandor 'The Hound' Clegane

Sure, he provides some much needed comic relief in Westeros, and in the end, he does persuade Arya to abandon a suicide mission in King's Landing. But let us not forget that Sandor (Rory McCann) does kill Arya's friend Mycha. This is how the Hound ends up on Arya's list in the first place.

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46. Varys

Remember when Varys (Conleth Hill) supported that plot to have Dany assassinated? We remember. Because it just happened.

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45. Shae

We liked Shae (Sibel Kekilli) until the moment we found out she had been sneaking around Tyrion's back with stuffy old Tywin, of all people. 

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44. Ser Jorah Mormont

Jorah (Iain Glen) starts off as a spy for Varys and Robert Baratheon, sending them information on Dany's whereabouts. But then he bends the knee, so to speak, and turns out to be quite the lovelorn defender.

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43. Jaqen H'ghar

Jaquen H'ghar (Tom Wlaschiha) is an assumed identity of one of the Faceless Men. He trains Arya in the dark arts of the face-swapping, no-named ninjas. The Faceless person who wears H'ghar's face is cruel and unrelenting and tortures Arya for two seasons as she practices the ways of the many-faced god.

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42. Olly

Olly (Brenock O'Connor) lost his family to wildlings, but he lets the ensuing hatred fester into something so dark that he kills well-meaning mentor Jon Snow. 

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41. Lady Olenna Tyrell

Olenna Tyrell (Diana Rigg) is an unscrupulous and unrepentant schemer, willing to marry off young Margaery to a monster if it means advancing the family. Olenna's also one of our favorite Thrones characters of all time. Her dying words revealed her wicked ways, "Tell Cersei, I want her to know it was me."

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40. Lancel Lannister

Even after becoming hyper-religious, Lancel Lannister  (Eugene Simon) manages to be a self-righteous monster with loyalty to no one but himself. Lancel's confession to the High Sparrow about his affair with Cersei is what lands Cersei on her walk of "shame!" [rings bell!] 

11 of 49 HBO screenshot by Leslie Katz/CNET

39. Arya Stark

Arya (Maisie Williams) has shown she can be a cold-blooded little assassin who recites a hit list before bed every night. Then again, she's also the one who kills the Night King, so, bygones.

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38. Orell the Warg

Orell (Mackenzie Crook) may not have buckets of blood on his hands, but his intentions are almost always terrible -- especially where Jon Snow is concerned. He knows all about survival, even if that means trying to kill Jon and Ygritte while scaling the Wall.

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37. Robin Arryn

Thanks to his weaning-averse mother Lysa, this young lord (Lino Facioli) is spoiled and maniacal. He sees executions as fun and sports a violent temper if something doesn't go his way. 

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36. Ser Ilyn Payne

He chops off Ned Stark's head. He didn't need to, technically, but he does. No wonder he's on Arya's hit list.

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35. Grand Maester Pycelle

Pycelle (Julian Glover) professes virtue to everyone, only to act against his own words privately, from employing prostitutes to persuading the Mad King to allow tragedy to be invited to the capital. Pycelle is a hypocrite of the highest degree.

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34. Khal Drogo

Khal Drogo (Jason Momoa) is a violent warlord who uses way too many livestock metaphors to describe other people. He takes a terrified teen bride into a highly transactional marriage. Dany later describes this as rape, despite having eventually caught Stockholm-syndrome feelings for Khal Meathead.

Also: Do you really need a wife to explain to you why mass rape is bad? Do better, man.

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33. Warlocks of Qarth

Their master plan: Kidnap Daenerys and her dragons and keep them prisoner forever. At first glance it might not sound terribly evil, but these guys are willing to keep a woman locked in a dungeon forever, just to amplify their own power.

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32. Ser Alliser Thorne

Castle Black master at arms Ser Alliser Thorne just starts out as a jerk, giving Jon Snow a hard time over his parentage and bullying new recruits like Samwell Tarly. He ultimately takes a dark turn by leading a mutiny against Jon after the younger man is elected Lord Commander.

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31. Mirri Maz Duur

You can almost forgive Mirri Maz Duur (Mia Soteriou) for using blood magic to kill Khal Drogo after she was kidnapped and raped by the Dothraki. But the woman takes things too far when she extends her wrath to Daenerys' unborn child. 

Lysa Arryn
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30. Lysa Arryn

Lysa (Kate Dickie) poisons her own husband and tries to kill Sansa out of jealousy. It may be hard to blame her, though, given the manipulation he put her through.

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29. Selyse Baratheon

Selyse (Tara Fitzgerald) lets Stannis burn their only living child in a sacrifice to the Lord of Light. Overcome with guilt, she ultimately hangs herself in the woods, but not before letting Melisandre barbecue her daughter.

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28. The High Sparrow

The High Sparrow (Jonathan Pryce) was famously evil to the most evil characters in the Seven Kingdoms. But any leader, religious or otherwise, who supports torture and public humiliation is at least a little bit evil himself.

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27. Ellaria Sand

Ellaria Sand (Indira Varma) is the kind of character who would be terrifying in real life as well as in the context of the show. She's a little too fond of poison and famously uses it on Cersei and Jaime's love child, Myrcella Baratheon.

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26. The Waif

The Waif (Faye Marsay) loves inflicting pain, and even made a bargain with Jaqen H'ghar that she could kill Arya for failing to carry out the hits called in the name of the Many-Faced God.

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25. Craster

Craster (Robert Pugh) takes his daughters as wives, only to create more daughters to marry. What of his sons? Sacrificed to White Walkers, proving this man is one of the absolute worst of the Wildlings.

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24. Balon Greyjoy

A man obsessed with his own ambitions, he lets his son Theon be captured twice -- by the Starks and the Boltons -- and be mutilated by Ramsay rather than move his troops. Upon receiving Theon's severed penis, Balon writes him off as useless. 

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23. Locke

It should come as no surprise that a hunter in the employ of Roose Bolton is a bad guy. Locke chops off Jaime Lannister's hand, forces Brienne of Tarth to fight a bear for entertainment and loves torturing those who cross him.

Kraznys mo Nakloz
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22. Kraznys mo Nakloz

Kraznys mo Nakloz (Dan Hildebrand) may not be one of the show's most infamous villains, but this slave trader's penchant for torturing and killing -- including slicing off a man's nipple -- earns him a spot on our list.

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21. Styr

There are so many things you could say about Styr (Yuri Kolokolnikov) but chances are you won't come up with anything worse than the fact that he eats Olly's parents.

Theon Greyjoy
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20. Theon Greyjoy

Theon (Alfie Allen) has done some terrible things, including betraying the people who raised him. But he eventually makes good with his adoptive family, even giving his life to protect Bran from the Night King.

Aerys "The Mad King" Targaryen
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19. Aerys 'The Mad King' Targaryen

"Mad King" Aerys Targaryen (David Rintoul) killed and tortured as he descended into insanity. That said, his failing mental state leaves questions about how much he knew right from wrong.

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18. Euron Greyjoy

Like many of the worst on Game of Thrones, Euron's (Pilou Asbæk) horrible acts come from a thirst for power. He murders his own brother for the Salt Throne and has Balon's children hunted down. He's a pirate to his core, but cold and calculating in every move he makes.

He also kills Rhaegal, and we're still mad.

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17. Melisandre

Sorceress Melisandre (Carice van Houten) has no qualms about creating killer shadow demons and urging men to burn daughters at the stake. Then again, she resurrects Jon Snow, proving there's more to her than just evil, and she eventually kills herself so that Davos Seaworth doesn't have to bother.

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16. Myranda

Myranda (Charlotte Hope) can be as depraved as lover Ramsay Bolton. However, much of what she does -- including having a woman mauled to death by dogs -- is done out of a twisted loyalty, whether it's returned it or not.

Stannis Baratheon
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15. Stannis Baratheon

Stannis Baratheon (Stephen Dillane) is so obsessed with the crown that he burns his own daughter at the stake. However, his bad deeds clearly haunt him until the day he dies at the hands of Brienne of Tarth.

Petyr "Littlefinger" Baelish
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14. Petyr 'Littlefinger' Baelish

Littlefinger (Aidan Gillen) has done many terrible things, but none more heinous than betraying Ned Stark in a move that costs the latter his head. No, wait: Littlefinger also manipulates a woman into killing her husband -- and then kills her. Then he essentially sells Sansa to a sadistic torturer. Then he tries to pit Sansa and Arya against each other. It just does not end with this guy... until Arya ends him.

Jaime Lannister
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13. Jaime Lannister

He may not be as devious as sister Cersei, but Jaime Lannister (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) is no treat -- he tosses a child out of a tower just for knowing too much. And, after toying with Brienne's heart, he returns to Cersei's side as soon as the zombies are gone. So much for personal growth, eh?

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12. Daenerys Targaryen

Dany has had a rough season 8. She watches her best friend get beheaded, loses her most trusted adviser and is jilted by her nephew-lover, Jon Snow.

Then, she goes and burns an entire city full of innocents, fulfilling her genetic potential for reckless evil.

Viserys Targaryen
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11. Viserys Targaryen

Viserys Targaryen (Harry Lloyd) sells sister Daenerys to a warlord before threatening to cut an unborn child out of her stomach. He deserves the molten gold crown, even if he believes the throne of Westeros is rightfully his.

Gregor "The Mountain" Clegane
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10. Gregor 'The Mountain' Clegane

"The Mountain" has raped, killed, burned his own brother's face and taken joy in being a warrior who obliterates opponents. He's not just evil. He's a nightmare.

Ser Meryn Trant
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9. Ser Meryn Trant

A true villain, Meryn Trant (Ian Beattie) is one of Joffrey's Kingsguard. At the request of his king, Meryn beats Sansa Stark. He's also a pedophile and a killer.

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8. The Tickler

Torture specialist the Tickler (Anthony Morris) has this interrogation technique with a rat in a bucket that still makes us cringe more than six years later.

Walder Frey
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7. Walder Frey

While being a lecherous old man with a bevy of very young wives is bad enough, Walder Frey (David Bradley) is also one of the key figures behind the Red Wedding, which decimates the Stark family.

Tywin Lannister
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6. Tywin Lannister

Tywin Lannister (Charles Dance) is a vicious old man. He's had many of his own soldiers tortured and killed and ordered the deaths of Targaryens, all to keep his own family in power. 

Roose Bolton
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5. Roose Bolton

It should come as no surprise that the father of Ramsay Bolton is vile in his own right. Roose (Michael McElhatton) is part of the conspiracy to pull off the Red Wedding, stabbing King Robb Stark through the heart himself. 

Cersei Lannister
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4. Cersei Lannister

Cersei Lannister (Lena Headey) has had many people killed -- including her own husband -- all to protect her family and her romance with brother Jaime. 

The Night King
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3. The Night King

The Night King is a literal monster. The blue-skinned commander of the White Walkers kills en masse to turn corpses into his kind, even targeting babies. Even after his death, loathing of this creature still lingers.

Joffrey Baratheon
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2. Joffrey Baratheon

Is there anything worse than someone who's apparently born bad? It's debatable, but child king Joffrey's (Jack Gleeson) sick choices in amusements are maybe the most disturbing. He delights in torturing and killing prostitutes and commands people fight to the death for his entertainment. Even a terrible death by poisoning hasn't softened our hearts any.

Ramsay Bolton
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1. Ramsay Bolton

Only Ramsay Bolton (Iwan Rheon) could make Joffrey look tame. Fans thought his penchant for flaying prisoners and cutting pieces off of Theon Greyjoy was as dark as he could get. Then Ramsay gets his hands on Sansa Stark. In our humble opinion, it's Ramsay's sheer joy in the suffering of others, and his endless creativity in engineering that suffering, that make him the most vile character this series has ever seen.

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