Cartoons20+ Iconic Evil Cartoon Characters That Made The Heroes Work

20+ Iconic Evil Cartoon Characters That Made The Heroes Work

For every heroic cartoon character that shows up on the screen, there are bound to be evil cartoon characters present to keep the hero busy. 

But without them, there wouldn’t be much of a story to watch! 

Can you imagine the Powerpuff Girls without Mojo Jojo? Or how about legendary villains like Scar from The Lion King?

Here’s a list of some of the most iconic evil cartoon characters that put heroes to work.

20+ Iconic Evil Cartoon Characters Of All Time

24. Scar – The Lion King

scar lion king

Surprisingly enough, Disney villains often don’t succeed in killing their arch-foe. Well, not Scar; he successfully killed Mufasa and became king of the Pride Lands.

In the first movie, Scar is the younger brother of Mufasa and is supposed to be next in line for the throne. However, he didn’t think he’d get a nephew and have his position pushed back.

He starts resenting Mufasa and eventually kills his brother and scares his nephew out of their kingdom.. 

To his surprise, Simba returned to fight!

23. Joker (DC Animated Universe)

joker batman animated series

This mad clown is Gotham City’s most feared villain. Even Batman has a difficult time keeping Joker in jail. He was already a notorious criminal before the chemical bath gave him heightened abilities.

Did you know Joker even revived himself using Tim Drake’s body? He eventually takes control of the man so he can again wreak havoc in Gotham, even if he’s supposed to be dead.

Dr. Harleen Quinzel often psychoanalyzed Joker. However, he managed to win her heart and trust and even caused the poor psychiatrist to turn over a new leaf. Sadly she went over to the dark side.

22. Captain Hook – Peter Pan

captain hook

Captain Hook is one of the evilest cartoon characters in Disney. While Peter Pan made it seem easy on most days, Hook knows how to get the boy’s attention by kidnapping Wendy.

He even Kidnaps Wendy’s daughter in the second film by mistake. But it was enough to rile Neverland’s hero up. 

Did you know Peter fed Hook’s left hand to the crocodile?

The reptile has since developed a taste for the pirate and constantly follows him for a chance to eat the remaining parts of his body.

21. Gabriel Agreste/Hawk Moth/Monarch – Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug and Cat Noir

gabriel agreste

The French cartoon is a super hit among fans worldwide, so you can bet the supervillain is also one of the most talked about baddies today. 

Hawk Moth serves as the central antagonist of the hit French cartoon Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug and Cat Noir. Also known as Monarch, the villain usually hides in the shadows and sends out akumas and sentimonsters to do the dirty work for him. 

Gabriel is so obsessed with getting the Miraculous of Ladybug and Cat Noir because those two artifacts combined have wish-granting capabilities.

See all Miraculous Ladybug Characters here.

20. Mojo Jojo – Powerpuff Girls

mojo jojo

Everyone remembers Mojo Jojo, an evil chimpanzee scientist who was formerly Professor Utonium’s lab assistant.

He eventually left after the professor paid more attention to girls than him and decided to become the evil-doer he is today. 

On occasions, he even wins against the super-powered girls, but he doesn’t manage to enjoy the victory for too long. He doesn’t even know that he is the real reason the professor managed to create the PowerPuff Girls, so technically he is the girls’ father.

19. Shego – Kim Possible

shego kim possible

Shego is one of the hottest female evil cartoon characters, and it’s not even close. Her outfit, the black lipstick, and just her overall character design make her attractive.

She also knows she’s beautiful because she uses her looks to her advantage. Her main goal is to defeat Kim Possible in battle, but even with powers, it seems challenging for her to do.

According to HenchCo.’s Check Your Badness Level, she is already eviler than Drakken and a greater threat compared to him. But even though she is eviler, she has a higher moral compass.

18. Cruella de Vil – 101 Dalmatians

cruella de vil

Who said having superpowers is a requirement to be a villain? Cruella is one of Disney’s greatest villains, yet she has no supernatural abilities.

Cruella isn’t a smart villain, but her impulsiveness to get what she wants and the means she uses can be terrifying. She was so close to killing 99 Dalmatian puppies just to create a spotted fur coat. Even thinking that this was an okay thing to do for the sake of top fashion is downright evil!

The fur-loving villain even has her own theme song courtesy of Roger Radcliffe. He created the song as a means to make fun of her, and it stuck. 

17. Firelord Ozai – Avatar the Last AirBender

firelord ozai

Firelord Ozai does not appear in every episode of Avatar: The Last Airbender, but his presence was always felt and feared by the people of the world.

Initially, the position of “Firelord” was supposed to be given to Iroh. But after his son’s death, he decided to give the position to Ozai. This fueled Ozai’s desire for power. He eventually ruled the Fire Nation with an iron fist and started terrorizing surrounding settlements making them colonies of his nation.

Ozai’s reign of terror finally ended when Aang took away his bending, and he was sentenced to spend his remaining days behind bars.

16. Lex Luther – DC Animated Universe

lex luthor dc

Lex Luther is one of DC’s most famous evil cartoon characters. He is usually depicted as Superman’s arch-nemesis despite being only human.

What makes Lex a fearful foe is his vast knowledge, where he can devise weapons capable of killing heroes. However, he isn’t against using magic if it means getting what he wants.

Since his rise to Power, Lex has always wanted to be in control. The thought of an alien disguised as a human protecting the work irked him. But, the superhero’s popularity was hard to beat, and even bribing people didn’t stop them from loving Superman.

15. Yzma – The Emperor’s New Groove


One of the funniest evil characters in Disney is Yzma from The Emperor’s New Groove. Originally this character was meant to have a more serious attitude with killer powers to boot, but the idea was scrapped, and she became a sort of scientist.

The animators were furious with the change, but the changes were received really well by fans. This new Yzma and the movie became a massive hit with the audience.

It is hinted in the movie that Yzma has previously cared for the young Kuzco, but the emperor eventually fired her. So she decides to kill him, but her potion turns him into a llama instead.

14. Charles Montgomery Burns – The Simpsons

charles montgomery burns

Another character who doesn’t need supernatural powers to be evil is Mr. Burns, a yellow cartoon character from The Simpsons. He is Homer’s boss and is the richest and oldest citizen in Springfield.

Despite his frail appearance, Mr. Burns has already outlived many of Springfield’s residents. He is incredibly wealthy and even hires people to commit crimes for him to gain more power and wealth in the city.

Mr. Burns carries a lot of stereotypical attributes about Corporate America, such as wanting more power and exploiting his workers to gain it. Accordingly, Burns has weekly medical treatments to lengthen his life.

13. Drago Bludvist – How to Train Your Dragon

drago bludvist

Out of the two human antagonists shown in the How to Train Your Dragon movies, Drago is probably the scariest villain Hiccup and Toothless had to face. 

He even took control of a Bewilderbeast. Drago even got a hold of Toothless and decided to lead all the other dragons to war against Berk shortly after Stoiks’s death. His hate for dragons stemmed from his childhood, as he constantly hid in fear of them. Eventually, he became a Dragon Hunter to face the monsters from his past. 

There was a plan to have him back in the third installment, but the idea was eventually scrapped.

12. Sheldon J. Plankton – SpongeBob SquarePants

sheldon j. plankton

Plankton is an evil character with only one goal- to steal the Krabby Patty secret formula. A restaurant he owns, the Chum Bucket, hardly gets any customers, and he envies Mr. Krabs for being such a huge success.

He has a computer wife named Karen, who seems to be capable of developing her own emotions.

Originally he was made to be a one-time character, but the writers decided to have him as a permanent character and turn Plankton into the series’ main antagonist. Although sometimes he plays an anti-hero.

11. Jafar – Aladdin


When I think of evil cartoon characters in Disney movies, Jafar is the first one to pop up. The evil sorcerer is portrayed as an immoral psychopath who wishes to rule Agrabah and gain unlimited power. 

But, using his greed for power, Aladdin convinced him to turn into a genie so he could have limitless power. Unfortunately, he forgot that genies are technically slaves kept in a lamp till their new master comes along.

He’s still scary to look at with his dark robes and towering appearance. Before turning into a Genie, Jafar could already perform several spells.

10. Ursula – The Little Mermaid

ursula little mermaid

One of Disney’s most iconic female evil cartoon characters is Ursula. She’s an extremely arrogant Cecaelia, known for striking deals with Merfolk.

While her victims get what they asked, Ursula somehow manages to win their bargain.

When she got a hold of the Trident, she grew into a huge version of herself which was nightmare fuel to those watching. She forced every sea folk to bow down to her as a test of her power.

Did you know she often keeps her past clients in jars when they fail to fulfill what she requested during their deals?

9. The Evil Queen – Snow White

the evil queen snow white

What is with Disney and female villains?

This wicked witch is determined to stay the fairest one in all of her kingdom. However, she is insanely jealous of a girl named Snow White, so she fed her a poisoned apple. Luckily, the apple only caused her to fall asleep.

The Evil Queen is considered Disney’s most iconic and menacing villain in history. It doesn’t seem like the Queen is concerned much about power. Instead, she’s all about beauty.

After the film’s success, she became the basis for other villains like Maleficent.

8. Maleficent – Sleeping Beauty

maleficent sleeping beauty

Speaking of Maleficent, despite being based on The Evil Queen, she quickly became one of Disney’s most popular and recognizable villains.

Maleficent is a fairy who was not invited to Princess Aurora’s christening. She was furious for not being invited and decided to put a curse on the infant.

The malevolent fairy cursed the baby to die when she will prick her finger on her 16th birthday. Aside from casting curses, she is also the most powerful female villain in Disney.

7. Fairy Godmother – Shrek 2

fairy godmother shrek 2

You have to hand it to Dream Works for creating famous evil cartoon characters out of famous heroes in their movies. The Fairy Godmother is a manipulative fairy that often discourages people from making the correct choice.

She’s the mother of Prince Charming and was the reason behind Fiona’s entrapment in the castle. Accordingly, she does it so her son can save and marry her.

In Far Far Away, she provides people with spells and potions. It’s her business! And as you’ve probably guessed, the Fairy Godmother is a spoof of Cinderall’s Fairy Godmother.

6. Lots-o’-Huggin’ Bear – Toy Story 3

lots o huggin bear toy story 3

No one could have expected a villain to be this cute. In Toy Story, toys are geared to only want their kid happy. Well, not Lots-O’. He despises children and doesn’t care about what they feel.

Lots-O is also willing to kill his fellow toys when they disagree with him, especially when Andy’s toys refuse to give up on their kid.

Based on what he’s done in Toy Story 3, he deserves to be stuck on the truck he found himself in at the movie’s ending.

5. Ernesto de la Cruz – Coco

ernesto de la cruz coco

It was bad enough that he stole Hector Rivera’s music and fame, but he also killed his best friend.

Even in the afterlife, he continued to trick the spirits into believing he was Mexico’s legendary singer and songwriter. He even played along and posed as Miguel’s grandfather.

When Miguel found out the truth about his identity, he immediately decided that he needed to kill Miguel so he could retain his fame.

In the end, justice got served, and Hector was once again recognized as a loved member of his family.

4. Syndrome/Buddy Pine – The Incredibles

syndrome incredibles
  • Age: 25
  • Height: 170 cm
  • Voice Actor: Jason Lee

Syndrome is a perfect example of why people should also treat their fans with respect. You might be creating a supervillain without even knowing it. 

When he was a kid, he was a huge fan of Mr. Incredible as a kid and was hoping for a chance to become his sidekick. However, he wasn’t given a chance by the hero because he had no “super” powers.

As a result, Syndrome shifted his goal to kill all superheroes so no one could be super. Since this man has no powers, he created a machine to kill all the heroes even if it meant harming those around him.

3. Hades – Hercules

hades from hercules

Instead of the actual Hades in Greek Mythology, people can’t help but think of Disney’s Hades instead of the powerful and intimidating god of the Underworld.

The blue-flamed hair and his manner of speaking make Hades so iconic. Originally his character was supposed to resemble the Greek myth version, but the creators decided to base Hades’ personality on James Woods’ portrayal of Hades.

Throughout the film, he has constant mood swings. He can be lazy and happy in one minute to argumentative and impatient in the next. Hades is more polite in the House of Mouse, but that’s only because he has a crush on Maleficent.

2. Gaston – Beauty and the Beast

gaston beauty and the beast

Gaston is an egotistical character in Disney. He has this idea that everyone loves him, and he can easily get Belle’s hand in marriage. The villagers also agree and consider him the town’s hero.

Despite making viewers believe he isn’t smart, he can be cunning and manipulative. For example, he knew that Belle loves her father and even thinks of a plan to blackmail her by using him.

He even backstabs the Beast once he had his guard down. 

1. Zim – Invader Zim

zim invader zim

Zim is an evil protagonist of the show Invader Zim but becomes the main antagonist of the cartoon film titled “Invader Zim: Enter the Florpus.”

He’s an Irken alien that doesn’t seem to understand that he is banished and cannot join Operation Impending Doom. The alien gets sent to Earth on a “secret mission” to invade it, but his superiors just wanted him far from the real operation.

Zim is more dangerous to himself than anyone. A character named Dib knows his identity and constantly attempts to foil his plans, but usually, Zim does an excellent job at that himself.


Evil cartoon characters aren’t just one-dimensional characters placed into the film to play the bad guy. Usually, they have a greater purpose. These characters may be villains, but they greatly impact viewers. They provide loads of entertainment, and some even provide different points of view. 

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