Some of history’s greatest movie villains also happen to be parents-- for example, Darth Vader, Jack Torrance, and The Green Goblin.
Parents being evil has become a popular dramatic theme for the hero’s journey, as nothing is quite as scary as fulfilling your destiny, only to be foiled by the very person who raised you-- or, in Luke Skywalker’s case, realizing that you inherit your powerful abilities from a galactic oppressor.
Most recently, the Marvel Cinematic Universe continued the tradition of dastardly parental figures with Thanos, the adoptive father of Gamora and Nebula, who is forced to make a chilling sacrifice to gain control over the entire universe.
Thanos has joined the pantheon at the very top of Marvel’s list of terrible movie dads, which also includes Odin, Howard Stark, and Ego the Living Planet.
Some fan artists have used their creativity to bring their wishful daydreams and twisted fantasies to life, either imagining childless villains with newfound bundles of joy or reimagining their favorite evil parents as loving role models.
Although a child is a huge responsibility, as Norman Osborn will tell you, becoming a parent doesn’t necessarily mean leaving behind a life of crime. Children could even grow up to become valuable partners or eventually take over the villainous mantle.
With that said, here are 20 Movie Villains Reimagined as Charming Parents.
20 Kylo Ren
As the latest in a line of Skywalker children, whose family seem to determine the fate of the whole galaxy, Kylo Ren was formerly known as Ben Solo, the angst-ridden son of Han Solo and General Leia Organa.
With the most unstable lightsabre in the Star Wars universe, and a temper to match it, there’s no way a child would be safe under the protection of Supreme Leader Snoke’s whiniest apprentice.
In this design, Kylo is reimagined as a doting parental figure to what looks like a young Rey, the protagonist of Disney’s new trilogy of movies.
Rather than studying the sacred Jedi texts, Rey is taking a well-earned break from Padawan duties to sketch an adorable stick figure of Ben wielding the green lightsabre of a Jedi master.19 Captain Hook
A pirate ship is surely no place to raise a child. In fact, based on Captain Hook’s all-male crew, the very idea is a sure impossibility.
Steven Spielberg’s forgotten gem Hook imagines an older Captain Hook who attempts to kidnap Peter Pan’s son and raise him as his heir, and we all know how that turned out.
Thanks to the geniuses over at Disney, we don’t have to rely on fan art to imagine a world in which all our favorite cartoon villains spawned equally evil offspring, as the Descendants franchise does that for us.
This artwork groups Captain Hook with CJ and Harry, the latter of whom we can only assume had a run-in with the same hand-gobbling crocodile.18 Darth Vader
As the most famous evil dad in all of history, Darth Vader made the worst decision a parent could make when he chopped off his son’s hand before begging him to rule the universe by his side.
Return of the Jedi revealed that the intergalactic overlord was also the father of Leia Organa, the twin sister of Luke separated at birth.
This adorable series of comics by Jeffrey Brown reimagines Vader as a loving, if a little reluctant, single dad trying to rule the galaxy and raise two kids at the same time.
You can find plenty more online, and even purchase a physical collection.17 Frankenstein’s Monster
It could be said that Dr Frankenstein himself is a villainous father, forging his monstrous, lonely creature from the body parts of the recently passed on to create a son for himself.
Many attempts have been made to give the misunderstood monster a family, most notably the Bride of Frankenstein, whose lightning-struck beehive has made her almost as popular as the original creature. Whether or not the monstrous pair could reproduce is another question entirely.
This art imagines the Boris Karloff iteration of Frankenstein’s Monster with a whole host of dug-up companions, including a teenage daughter bringing the bandaged look back in style, and a grandmother which, when you think about it, makes no sense at all.16 Joker and Harley
The second entry in the popular series of Batman video games, Arkham City, teased that the Joker’s equally psychotic girlfriend and partner, Harley Quinn, may have been pregnant.
Though this cliffhanger didn’t come to fruition, the idea of Joker spawning a child sent chills down the spines of players.
Though it was recently speculated that lesser-known villain Anarky may have been the Joker’s son, and he has previously made an unsuccessful attempt to turn Robin into a makeshift Joker Jr., the Clown Prince of Crime has yet to produce any offspring.
This piece of fan art makes us very thankful that he hasn’t yet had a child.
A third clown-themed psychopath is the very last thing that Gotham needs.15 Dracula
When Universal launched their horror series with Dracula and Frankenstein in 1931, they became smash hits, and the studio was soon looking at ideas for sequels.
Bela Legosi’s Dracula was vanquished by the end of the first movie, so Dracula’s Daughter and Son of Dracula were born.
The tyrannical Count was first portrayed with a daughter, but the ingeniously named Count Alucard (spell that backwards) has been a popular fixture in pop culture ever since 1943, appearing in comic books, movies, and the Castlevania video games.
This fan art depicts the vampire settling down with one of his many brides.
The kids may look cute now, but there’s no doubt they'll soon be crafting some nefarious schemes of their own.14 Hela
Hela, portrayed brilliantly by Cate Blanchett in Thor: Ragnarok, is the Goddess of Death and, in fact, the older sister of Thor and Loki.
Marvel doesn’t shy away from playing fast and loose with Norse mythology, as her comic book counterpart is actually more faithful to the original myths, and is depicted instead as the child of Loki.
In Taika Waititi’s movie, Hela was born several millennia before Thor and Loki, and is therefore old enough to be their mother.
Had Hela not attempted to overthrow Odin’s throne, she could have been a strong, if reluctant, mother figure to the two bickering brothers.
This art depicts an exhausted Hela, intervening in yet another of Thor and Loki’s petty squabbles.13 Hades and Maleficent
If there are two Disney villains who perfectly embody the idea of evil, it’s surely Maleficent and Hades.
As a wicked sorceress and the literal god of the underworld, the pair are two of the most dastardly and powerful Disney foes ever drawn on screen.
Maleficent seems to have taken her lack of invitation to the christening of Princess Aurora in her stride, forgetting the little brat to sire a demonic daughter of her own, complete with Hades’ fiery ‘do.
While Hades is never going to win any awards for father of the year, the smooth-talking god has revealed his protective side when chatting to Meg about Hercules (“he’s a guy”), so perhaps the appearance of a bundle of joy could persuade him to turn over a new leaf.12 Killmonger
If there’s one thing that took the world by storm this year more than Michael B Jordan’s performance as Erik Killmonger, it’s Michael B Jordan’s incredible body transformation.
Ever since Creed, Jordan’s chest seems to be getting wider, and his shirtless scenes in Black Panther took everyone by surprise. It’s no wonder that T’Challa was thrown off his game.
This art imagines a Killmonger abandoning his treasonous motives and becoming a loving father, with a little help from his cousin King T’Challa.
Thankfully, he hasn’t yet developed his dad bod and is still rocking the short dreadlocks.
If the King can forgive him, there’s no doubt that N’Jadaka would be the coolest dad in Wakanda.11 Harley Quinn and Deadpool
Think of the comic book character who would make the worst father and 99% of comic fans are going to name Deadpool as their prime candidate.
He has the foulest mouth in the Marvel Universe, makes a living as an international mercenary, and leaves countless weapons lying around waiting to be played with.
In the movies, Ryan Reynolds’ Deadpool is ever-so-slightly toned down, with Deadpool 2 suggesting that Wade Wilson could eventually become a loving father with Vanessa, his girlfriend who keeps him under check.
Pair Deadpool with Harley Quinn, however, and it’s a completely different story. The two loosest cannons of their respective comic book universes raising a baby... what could possibly go wrong?10 Terminator
When Arnold Schwarzenegger’s T-800 made his debut in James Cameron’s The Terminator, he probably reminded a lot of younger viewers of their own fathers.
Cool, collected, and just a little bit violent, his penchant for leather jackets and motorcycles come T2: Judgement Day made for a surprisingly effective father figure for John Connor. Once the whole insatiable need to take down his mother had been dealt with, that is.
The disappointing Terminator: Genisys took cues from his awkward but charming parental role in the original sequel, this time being sent back even further to protect the younger Sarah Connor, raising her as an unstoppable combative force.
We never got to see the early years of their relationship, but this artwork does it for us.9 Godzilla
Godzilla purists will insist that the most popular and destructive kaiju of all time is male, but the American remake of the 1954 classic proposed that the gigantic reptile could be female, spawning hundreds of baby Godzillas across New York City.
This adorable webcomic takes the idea and runs with it, depicting a momma Godzilla emerging from the sea, her back sprawling with babies, in order to give her young a training course in city destruction.
As a monstrous behemoth and fierce brawler, Godzilla would certainly be a formidable parent.
However, the monster’s protective nature could hide some mothering instincts, as long as she doesn’t step on her young.8 Predator
Much like the Xenomorph, the Predators are an alien species built for war and combat.
As a violent race, they hunt other species and keep a collection of trophies. Since one landed in Central America and had a chaotic run-in with Arnold Schwarzenegger, they have remained a popular sci-fi icon, appearing later this year in Shane Black’s The Predator.
The creatures do reproduce conventionally, rather than relying on a complex and gruesome system of facehuggers, eggs and chest-bursting, but most Predators are more concerned with hunting prey than raising young.
They almost certainly don’t celebrate Christmas but, if they did, this cartoonist imagines that there’d be more than toys waiting for Predator children under the tree.7 Maleficent
We’ve already seen how the child of Maleficent and Hades could work out. However, given the that that the Mistress of All Evil despises men, it’s much more likely that the demonic sorceress simply conjured up a child of her own, either through potion or incantation.
Maleficent’s smile while her child scrambles around her horns could indicate that she’s changed her malicious ways, but given that her young daughter has inherited her mother’s devilish horns, it’s much more likely that she’ll grow up just as evil as her villainous mother.
Perhaps Maleficent has mothered this offspring in hopes that she will become another powerful adversary to Princess Aurora.
Writers of the upcoming Maleficent 2 best be taking notes.6 Nosferatu
Before Dracula was adapted to screen in 1931, German movie director F.W. Murnau tried his best to adapt Bram Stoker’s Gothic novel, but couldn’t get his hands on the rights.
Rather than give up, the filmmaker did what any great artist does – stole the idea and changed the names.
Although the renegade director was eventually sued and many copies of the movie destroyed, Nosferatu has since been restored.
It features the dreaded Count Orlock, an obvious allusion to Count Dracula, one of the first and ugliest vampires ever put to movie.
As imagined here, if Orlock ever had a teenage daughter, his huge ears and toothy grin would make him the King of embarrassing dads.5 Sauron
Before Sauron there was Melkor, later known as Morgoth, the first Dark Lord in Tolkein’s expansive Middle Earth saga.
Though we don’t ever see Morgoth in Peter Jackson’s trilogies, his influence is felt everywhere, and his name is occasionally whispered, as in the “Balrog of Morgoth” who causes Gandalf quite a bit of trouble.
He most prominently features in The Silmarillion, a collection of short stories that hasn’t yet been adapted, though we’re still crossing our fingers.
We’re sure that the great fantasy writer never intended readers to consider the two embodiments of evil as parental figures in any way, shape or form, but it’s still fun to imagine the pair as two caring dads struggling to raise five adorable babies.4 Draco Malfoy
For once, we don’t need to imagine how the offspring of villainy could turn out, as J.K. Rowling has done all the work for us.
The vile and cowardly Hogwarts bully, Draco Malfoy, frequently made Harry Potter’s life miserable, though began to see the error of his ways after refusing to perform the avada kedavra curse on Albus Dumbledore.
Nineteen years after the Battle of Hogwarts, Draco is seen accompanying his son Scorpius onto the Hogwarts Express.
Though the two-part stage production Harry Potter and the Cursed Child revealed the events of the characters’ descendants at Hogwarts, it’s far easier to imagine, as this fan art does, that Draco redeemed himself entirely and his son lived happily ever after with two loving parents.3 Magneto
It’s tough having a supervillain for a parent, especially when your father is Magneto, a magnetic menace who has spent most of his life behind some form of prison walls, or battling Professor X in metaphorical and literal games of chess.
The closest that Bryan Singer’s X-Men movies have come to accurately representing Magneto’s role as a father is X-Men: Apocalypse, which almost features a touching father-son moment between Michael Fassbender and Evan Peters’ Quicksilver, but doesn’t quite stick the landing.
Perhaps the real reunion is coming up in Dark Phoenix.
Aside from Quicksilver, the comic book Magneto is also father to Scarlet Witch and Polaris (among others), and this fan art imagines a world where rights issues don’t come between super-powered families.2 Thanos
Thanos is possibly the worst father in Marvel history, at least from what we’ve seen from the Cinematic Universe.
Thanos is the adoptive parent of Gamora, whom he trained vigorously every single day, experimenting and augmenting her into a biological weapon. Gamora is his favorite daughter.
The Mad Titan also took Nebula under his wing, subjecting her to torturous body enhancement every time she lost a sparring match to her more skilled "sister," Gamora. Now, she’s more machine than flesh.
This cute fan art reimagines Thanos as a more loving father, raising his two children to conquer worlds alongside him.
Gamora definitely would have turned out a lot differently if Thanos had read her a bedtime story every now and then.1 Laufey
Loki has never felt at home in the universe. Rejected by his Frost Giant father Laufey and adopted by an unloving god, Odin, he has always played second fiddle to Thor in vying for his parents’ affections.
After an attempt at overthrowing Asgard was thwarted by Thor, he set his sights on Earth, and was once again vanquished from his potential home and imprisoned back on Asgard.
Even the trash planet Sakar, ruled by the incompetent megalomaniac Grand Master, chewed him up and spit him out.
Loki is one of the trickiest yet sympathetic Marvel villains. This fan art depicts the one thing Loki desperately needed from his childhood – a big hug from his loving dad, and a shoulder to cry on.
What do you think of these charmingly evil parents? Are there any other images of villains reimagined as parents that we need to see? Sound off in the comments!
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