Production editor Heidi Hogg is back with another fantastic post. Here’s Heidi!

Katherine Pierce from The Vampire Diaries.

Chuck Bass from Gossip Girl.

Doctor Evan Marks from Beauty and the Beast.

Malcolm Merlyn from Arrow.

What do all these characters have in common? They’re villains. Heroes get all the praise, but a good villain is what makes a story really juicy. Why? Villains let us explore that part of us that’s less-than-altruistic—the Mr. Hyde lurking within.

And not all villains are fictional. In fact, some of the most deliciously devilish characters were real people.

You might think Davy Jones was ghastly in Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest—but seventeenth-century pirate François l’Olonnais was even worse! After growing up a slave of some Spaniards, he sought revenge on the high seas. He’s rumored to have tortured the citizens of Maracaibo until they gave up the town’s treasure. Definitely a blackguard!

In the Hunger Games trilogy, the Capitol demands a tribute of twenty-four children each year and orders them to fight to the death. However, the Aztec warrior king Ahuizotl is credited with sacrificing twenty thousand people over four days. One by one, victims were marched up the temple stairs and had their hearts cut out while still alive. Oh, and the other prisoners were forced to watch, of course. Cold-blooded!

Many of the villains that have thwarted James Bond seem diabolical, and some were KGB double agents. Yet Russian spy Anna Chapman probably could outsmart them all. She avoided detection for years, and even after her arrest in the United States, she escaped punishment by being deported to Russia. In fact, she now has a career in entertainment and fashion. It’s unlikely that Anna will suffer the same gruesome end that so many other Bond villains do.

12926 Indulge your wicked side! Read about these and other villains in Pirates, Scoundrels, and Scallywags (cover pictured); Merciless Monarchs and Ruthless Royalty; and Assassins, Traitors, and Spies—all part of the ShockZone Villains series.