Who Are the Top Heroes and Villains in Pop Culture?

Entertainment Weekly has compiled another one of their delicious and oh-so-controversial lists, and this time they decided to focus on the top 20 coolest heroes and vilest villains in pop culture. Why must EW aggravate us on Monday by producing a list that puts Nancy Drew (17) before Batman (18)? Does Spider-Man (10) really belong before tough guys like Dirty Harry (15) and James T. Kirk (12)? Thankfully Han Solo (7) barely beats Buffy the Vampire Slayer (8), even though little Harry Potter (4) trumps them all. (I’m sorry – and I know Harry Potter is a popular hero – but is he really cooler than Han Solo?) On the hero side of things, James Bond takes the top spot, followed closely behind by Indiana Jones (at least this Harrison Ford character beat Harry Potter) and Superman, to round out the top three.

Heading over to the vilest villains, Jack Nicholson’s nutty character from The Shining kicks things off at number 20, and I was kinda upset to see that one of my favorite villains of all time -- Hans Gruber from Die Hard -- came in pretty high at 16. Not only that, but you know who came in at 15? Snow White’s Queen! Yup, the villain in Snow White is more badass than Hans Gruber? Should I give up now?

Folks like Voldemort (8), Dracula (9) and Mr. Burns from The Simpsons (6) populate the top ten, while top honors went to (sigh) The Wicked Witch of the West (1), Darth Vader (2) and Hannibal Lecter (3). Note that Ledger’s Joker from The Dark Knight came in at number four, while Jack Nicholson’s Joker from Tim Burton’s Batman didn’t even make the list. I shall now go punch a wall.

In the meantime, feel free to check out both lists and let us know what you think they got right (not much) and wrong (everything)…

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