Power Rankings: Breaking Bad - Best Villains
In order to be a baddie on a show called Breaking Bad, one must be...really really bad. We met many types of villains throughout Walter's transformation from high school chemistry teacher with terminal lung cancer to the Scarface of the modern era. Below are our rankings of the top 10 best villains from Breaking Bad based on how threatening, smart, entertaining, and purely evil they are.
Disclaimer - While we acknowledge that Walt is a villain in many ways, we chose to exclude him from this list, with the approach that these are enemies of the main characters of the show, Walt and Jesse.
Character: Tyrus Kitt
Bio: One of Gus Fring's top enforcers after Victor was relieved of his duties. Tyrus was assigned to track every move made by Walt and Jesse and to provide muscle to Gus whenever necessary. He also helped out in the superlab in a pinch.
What Makes Them A Great Villain: Tyrus is the poor man's version of the Salamanca twins, silent but deadly. He was seemingly always right there, looking over Walt's and Jesse's shoulders wherever they went. The only thing this watchdog couldn't sniff out was the bomb attached to Hector's wheelchair.
Most Evil Moment: Tyrus imposing his will on Walt with just his actions. Letting him know that he is always there and that no one is irreplaceable.
Character: Lydia Rodarte-Quayle
Bio: Head of Logistics for Madrigal Electromotive. Lydia used her status at the conglomerate to provide Gus with methylamine. She also had serious connections with the Czech Republic. Will load her drinks with Stevia until she dies...
What Makes Them A Great Villain: Lydia is a badass single mother in a realm mostly dominated by men. While Lydia doesn't possess the brutality of most of the villains on this list, she is intelligent and resourceful in her dealings, constantly proving her worth to Gus' and Walt's drug empires to stay relevant. Don't let her looks fool you, Lydia won't hesitate to stab you in the back to protect her own interests. She won't do the literal stabbing, but she will hire someone to do it for her.
Most Evil Moment: Turning Walt's American Southwest business into a global empire.
Character: Don Eladio
Bio: Leader of a Mexican drug cartel. Don Eladio had a working relationship with Gus Fring for many years, but the two began to clash when Gus started distributing the "Blue Sky" crystal meth and overstepped his boundaries. He can't say no to a bottle of the rare tequila, Zafiro Añejo.
What Makes Them A Great Villain: There's a good chance that Don Eladio would be higher on this list if we simply saw more of him. After all, some of the villains ranked ahead of him here worked under Eladio. He amassed a great amount of power over many years in the drug trade, but his lone mistake was sparing "The Chicken Man" all those years ago.
Most Evil Moment: "Listen to me. The only reason you are alive and he is not, is because I know who you are. But understand. You are not in Chile anymore."
Character: Krazy-8 (Domingo Gallardo Molina)
Bio: A local drug distributor who often worked with his cousin, Emilio Koyama. Krazy-8 was also a DEA informant and even ratted out his own cousin. He used to work for his father's furniture store, Tampico Furniture, which has a catchy jingle that he and Walt bonded over. He also had a vicious attack dog that he was training when Jesse first went to see him. We hope someone rescued that dog after Krazy-8 departed and treated it to a better life.
What Makes Them A Great Villain: For a drug dealer, Krazy-8 is a charming guy. While he is almost as nasty as anyone on this list, he was able to sweet talk Walt into freeing him from that bike lock in the basement. Well, until Walt realized his true intentions. Give Krazy-8 creativity points for using a piece of a broken plate as a weapon.
Most Evil Moment: It's "krazy" what a catchy jingle can make you do, such as convincing you to set free a person who clearly wants to kill you.
Character: The Cousins (Leonel and Marco Salamanca)
Bio: The twins are the nephews of Hector Salamanca and work as hitmen for the cartel. Their weapon of choice is often an ax, which they keep incredibly shiny. They cross the border from Mexico to the United States to find the man responsible for the death of their cousin, Tuco.
What Makes Them A Great Villain: This pair can be menacing without saying a word or lifting a gun. As they made their way to America and we saw them worshiping Santa Muerte, which isn't the Mexican Santa Claus, it's the Mexican deity of death, we became terrified of them. The Cousins also just look really cool in every evil act they commit. When you see those skulls on the tips of their boots, you know death is approaching.
Most Evil Moment: The Cousins sought their revenge against Hank for killing Tuco. They severely injured Hank and most likely would have succeeded in killing him if Hank was not warned just before the Cousins arrived.
Character: Jack Welker
Bio: Jack was the leader of a white supremacist gang who had many connections in prison. Walt paid Jack to utilize those connections to murder all ten associates of Gus in prison within a two minute window so they couldn't testify. Jack then aligned himself and his gang fully with Walt and Lydia to help fill the void in the meth industry left by Fring's death.
What Makes Them A Great Villain: Uncle Jack is difficult to go toe-to-toe with because he has no morals or honor. He will make his demands and stand his ground. As the leader of a white supremacist group, Jack is extremely hateable and makes for a fine villain after Gus is gone. Jack's prison connections made him especially useful to Walt, but dealing with this devil came with a terrible price when Jack killed Hank against Walt's wishes...and offer of $80 million.
Most Evil Moment: Jack finished the job that the Cousins started. Hank's death was the moment that truly broke Walt and his family.
Character: Todd Alquist
Bio: Todd worked for Vamonos Pest when the company was purchased by Walt so the employees could help set up temporary meth labs in houses that were being fumigated. Todd proved his worth to Walt and continued to receive more responsibilities in the operation. He is also the nephew of Jack Welker and introduced Walt to Uncle Jack.
What Makes Them A Great Villain: Todd is so cold-blooded that it can make you shiver. It looked like he would make a fine partner because he respects and listens to Walt, but then you see that Todd won't hesitate to murder a child or innocent woman and will show zero remorse or humanity. Todd also always seems to one-up his Uncle Jack in terms of evil plots and craziness. For example, Todd convinced Jack to keep Jesse as their meth-cooking slave instead of killing him. The guy was a bone-chilling psychopath.
Most Evil Moment: Todd committed two of the most heinous acts on the entire show, so we had to include both.
Character: Hector Salamanca
Bio: Salamanca is a well-known name in the crime world, and it all started with Hector. Hector worked high up in the Mexican Cartel under Don Eladio until his health confined him to a wheelchair. Not a fan of fried chicken...or South Americans.
What Makes Them A Great Villain: Even in an old, crippled state and lacking the ability to speak, Hector still wreaks havoc throughout the show. Walt and Jesse found out the hard way that while Hector was limited physically, his mind was still as sharp as ever. His bell became an iconic sound and symbol for the series. It was also fun to see how cruel and unpleasant he was in the flashbacks before his health took a turn for the worse.
Most Evil Moment: In one of the aforementioned flashbacks, we see Hector holding one of the Cousins under water until he nearly drowned in order to teach a lesson.
We also can't talk about Hector Salamanca without watching the clip of his revenge against Gus.
Character: Tuco Salamanca
Bio: A drug dealer who was introduced to Jesse through Tuco's former prison cellmate, Skinny Pete. Tuco was impressed with the product that Walt and Jesse produced, so he became their distributor. There are those who might categorize Tuco as having an anger problem.
What Makes Them A Great Villain: Tuco is that brand of villain that is terrifying because you have no idea what he is going to do next. Will he beat one of his henchmen to death with his bare hands for speaking out of turn, or will he cook burritos for everyone? Either way, he'll do it with a smile, revealing that dope grill in his mouth. That random violence and recklessness made him one of the most entertaining characters on the show.
Most Evil Moment: Don't you hate when you drop a great line like "we're gonna make a lot of money together" and then one of your boys jumps in and says something to ruin the moment?
Character: Gustavo Fring
Bio: Founder and owner of the fast-food restaurant chain, Los Pollos Hermanos and generous supporter of the DEA Fun Run charity event. On the side, Gus is a drug kingpin and evil mastermind. He drives a Volvo and is an excellent cook.
What Makes Them A Great Villain: Unlike the previous villains on this list, Gus is well mannered, unassuming, mild-tempered, and a respected businessman and member of the community. These characteristics make the moments when he kills one of his men with a box cutter and threatens Walt's infant daughter even more sinister when he seemingly switches personalities. He also checks the box of having a mysterious past which adds even more layers to Gus as a villain. The chess match between the brilliant minds of Gus and Walt in season four was the peak of the show.
Most Evil Moment: Gus is completely silent for the slow, methodical lead up of the box cutter scene as Walt pleads for his life and Jesse's. Then, out of nowhere, Gus uses the box cutter on Victor while staring directly at Walt as he bleeds out. You can even see the terror on Mike's face at this point.
Conversely, Gus can also use his words to be horrifying as seen when he drags Walt out to the middle of the desert to make a very clear and direct threat to him and his family.
Image Credits: AMC