These villainous female creatures loomed large in my childhood imagination (apart from Bellatrix Lestrange – a recent addition). I’m sure their wicked thrall has embedded in my psyche ever since.
Maleficent (created by Marc Davis for Disney 1959) Maleficent’s evil knows no bounds, all of her insidious plans are devised out of pure spite. The malicious enchantress casts a spell on sweet Aurora to ensure that “Before the sun sets on her sixteenth birthday, she shall prick her finger on the spindle of a spinning wheel and DIE!”. With her devil-like horns, she is easily seen as the most evil villain of all. And a kickass mean name to boot – “maleficent” in the dictionary “doing evil or harm”.
Cruella de Vil (created by Dodie Smith 1956). Nobody likes people who are horrible to animals do they? And smokers aren’t top of the list. Cruella is a wealthy, fashion-obsessed heiress who wishes to use the skins of 99 Dalmatian puppies for a fur coat. She starred in the book The Hundred and One Dalmatians. She was voted the 39th greatest movie villain of all time, and one of Disney’s single most iconic and memorable characters. Brilliant name too, it’s served as the inspiration for a fetish magazine.
The White Witch in Narnia (created by C S Lewis in 1950). Jadis is the main female antagonist of the Narnia series. She’s also referred to as the White Witch in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, as she is the Witch who froze Narnia in the Hundred Years Winter. She exhibits icy, cool, cruel tendencies, also passive aggressive giving out Turkish Delight to trap unwitting children. As a child reading these books she thrilled me turning people and creatures into stone. Tilda Swinton embodied her perfectly in the latest film.
Bellatrix Lestrange – Harry Potter series (created by J K Rowling). Bellatrix was a pure-blood witch. She was educated at Hogwarts and sorted into Slytherin House. After graduating she became a Death Eater and was fanatically loyal to Voldemort, being one of his most sadistic and dangerous followers. She murdered the Malfoy’s house elf Dobby with her knife. During the final battle she was the last Death Eater standing but was killed in a duel by Molly Weasley.
Wicked Witch of the West. Margaret Hamilton played the Witch in the 1939 adaptation of the book. She is marvellously green, fast moving and SO CREEPY she had kids hiding behind the sofa. Even more terrifying is her clan of winged monkeys and her ability to peer into a crystal ball and watch Dorothy’s every move.