Characters, characters, characters. The most important aspect of any story. These fifteen characters did not help their story or their movie. In fact, most of them actually hurt their films. A bad character can really spoil the experience of watching a movie, and, oh boy, did 2021 bring us some terrible characters. It also brought us some good ones, so check out my ranking of my favorite 2021 movie characters by clicking on this sentence.
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SPOILERS AHEAD FOR THE FOLLOWING FILMS
Tom & Jerry
Coming 2 America
The Woman in the Window
Fear Street: Part Two - 1978
Space Jam: A New Legacy
Venom: Let There Be Carnage
Lavelle Junson (Coming 2 America): A worse version of Akeem.
Otto (F9): A forced main villain in the end.
Ercole Visconti (Luca): Also a forced main villain that is so over-the-top.
Walter Simmons (Godzilla vs. Kong): Cliche scientist villain.
Lorenzo Paguro (Luca): Very awkward father character.
Maia Simmons (Godzilla vs. Kong): Another cliche scientist villain.
Bernie Hayes (Godzilla vs. Kong): Inconsistently written cliche hero.
Josh Valentine (Godzilla vs. Kong): Out of place cliche hero.
Cynthia Murphy (Dear Evan Hansen): The most unlikable protagonist of the year.
Mirembe (Coming 2 America): The most underdeveloped love interest ever.
Without further ado, here are the worst characters of 2021.
15. Sheila (Fear Street: Part Two - 1978)
The Fear Street movies are films that I enjoyed upon first watch, but as I’ve thought about it more, they aren’t really that good. They have this CW-like quality to them that I do not like. Sheila was the worst character in those movies. She’s not even really that big of a character. She’s just this b-word that bullies Ziggy…but she, like, tries to kill her in the beginning of the movie. She ties her up and is about to light her on fire when she’s stopped by the counselors at her summer camp. The counselors don’t react to the fact that Sheila, this psychopathic girl, was literally about to burn this other girl alive. Sheila’s motivation is that she’s from Sunnyvale and Ziggy is from Shadyside, so Sheila is entitled to kill her because Ziggy’s town is cursed. What?? Who thought that was good writing???
14. Bopoto Izzi (Coming 2 America)
Bopoto Izzi was the daughter of the main antagonist of Coming 2 America. She acts as the woman that is supposed to be the wife of Lavelle. I don't know what they were thinking with this character. She's meant to be sexy. She's meant to be seductive. And instead of doing those things, she's just weird. Every time she's on screen, you know something strange is going to happen. She barely has any lines of dialogue. She just sings and dances. In every scene, she has a different, wilder costume that does not fit in the movie. I really don't like this character, and she makes me dislike Coming 2 America a lot.
13. Preeta (Tom & Jerry)
At the beginning of Tom and Jerry, Preeta and Ben have a good relationship. They are getting married in a few days, and both are ecstatic. However, throughout the two or three days that the movie takes place in, Preeta begins to change her mind because Ben is using his wealthiness to make their wedding bigger and grander. I hate Ben, but Preeta is an annoying little brat as well. Instead of just talking to her fiancee, she just runs away from her problems. It's stupid.
12. Sprite (Eternals)
Sprite is one of the most unlikable characters on this list. First of all...why is she a kid? Arishem the Judge tells Sersi and the audience that the Eternals are essentially perfect creations. So why did they make one of them an immortal child? Besides that, she is always whining. Always complaining about how she can't be with Ikaris. And then, when Ikaris turns bad, Sprite joins him...because she has a crush on him. She literally stabs her surrogate mother in the back because she has a crush on Ikaris. That's a terrible arc for a terrible character.
11. Joy the Bell Girl (Tom & Jerry)
Joy the bell girl is...yeesh. She is meant to be another comedic element inside of Tom & Jerry, but her humor is so different from the rest of the movie that she feels out of place. For most of the movie, she acts as this creepy girl that randomly pops up around the hotel. She then has this really long moment of failed comedy that made an appearance on my worst scenes of 2021 list. The writing isn't there. The performance isn't there. So that means the character isn't there.
10. Shriek (Venom: Let There Be Carnage)
Shriek started off as a seemingly interesting character that just went off the rails insane. Let There Be Carnage was just a weird movie, and Shriek was the weirdest part. I don't think the movie does a good enough job of convincing me that she is in love with Cletus, so when she escapes and tries to be with him, I just don't buy into it. Her shrieks were also not fun to listen to. I hated Naomie Harris' performance, and I think the writing for the character is too stilted and awkward. Thank God she's dead, because I do not want her in Venom 3.
9. Al-G Rhythm (Space Jam: A New Legacy)
This character...man, I hate him. Al-G's motivation is garbage: he just wants more recognition. This dude is literally a computer, and wants more recognition. So the plan of action should be to use LeBron James to get more famous? That doesn't really make sense. After his initial non-sensical plan doesn't work, he kidnaps LeBron and his son. He then wants to play LeBron in basketball. Al-G is a forced villain that is only used as a way to bring attempted conflict and tension into Space Jam 2...and it doesn't work in the slightest.
8. Jax Briggs (Mortal Kombat)
Jax starts off as a cool character. His arms get frozen off by Sub-Zero and he disappears for a while. When he returns, however, he's extremely cringe and feels like a completely different character. He's written very inconsistently. And that makes him bad. It really feels like both writers of Mortal Kombat wrote Jax: one got him in the first half of the movie and the other got him in the second half. It doesn't work at all, and I hope he's better in the inevitable Mortal Kombat sequels.
7. Taskmaster (Black Widow)
I blame Taskmaster on the marketing for Black Widow. In the comics, Taskmaster is a super cool villain that can mimic the moves of our heroes. He's the main antagonist of the Black Widow comics themselves. And they market her as the main antagonist of the film. But instead of that being the case, she's a henchmen. The true mastermind is this fat old general that speaks like he has bees up his nose. Taskmaster is basically a human robot. She's not interesting. She's certainly not the main villain. And she is one of the most disappointing characters of the year.
6. Cipher (F9)
I haven't seen previous Fast and Furious movies, but I do know that Cipher is the main villain in The Fate of the Furious. She's a minor character in F9...until the end. She insights the conflict of the movie, but then just chills in a cell for a bit. When she escapes, you think she's going to be the final villain of the film for, like, twenty more minutes. Nope. She poses a threat for all of three minutes. It's like the editors forgot to cut this part out of the movie. It feels so out of place and forced. I hate it. And I hate Cipher.
5. Sonya Blade (Mortal Kombat)
Sonya Blade. One of the cringiest and worst characters. She doesn't have the Mortal Kombat mark, but she wants it. That, in and of itself, is so stupid. The Mortal Kombat mark is basically a curse. It's horrifying. But she wants it. There's no explanation for why she wants this curse, but she's willing to kill to get it...which she does. This human with no powers beats Kano, who has this lethal laser eye. Her dialogue is also incredibly cringe-inducing. The performance from Jessica McNamee is not really that good. I really don't like this character, and I also hope she's fixed in the sequels.
4. Terrance Mendoza (Tom & Jerry)
Terrance was meant to be funny. He was not. In a film where crazy, silly things were constantly happening, he took everything seriously. The screenwriters must've thought this was funny, but it just fell flat. And, near the end of the movie, he becomes the villain for no reason. He just doesn't like Tom and Jerry. So he lies to both of them about each other and causes them to fight...which is stupid. The whole idea of Tom and Jerry is that they fight. Why would they need motivation to fight each other? This character is awful. He is a waste of space as well as a waste of Michael Peña's talent.
3. Ethan Russell (The Woman in the Window)
Fred Hechinger's performance as Ethan Russell was horrific, and that contributed to my hatred of the character. But this is just the worst way to execute a villain. They set him up as a protagonist, but he's super weird and unlikable. And when the twist happens and he is revealed as the villain, he is extra weird and super creepy, but not in a good way. It hits all of the wrong notes in the wrong way. The writing and acting for this character was just dreadful, and it made me really not like The Woman in the Window.
2. Ben (Tom & Jerry)
Ben was one of the most annoying and horrible characters in any movie ever. I hate Colin Jost and his stupid face. I don't like him on SNL or in movies, and he's awful as ever in Tom & Jerry. His character is so unlikable and so gross. He is the groom getting married in the wedding, and he keeps upsetting his fiancee by making things bigger and more expensive then she wants. It's one of the worst and most irritable character arcs ever. As soon as he walked on screen with his gross smile, I cringed. And I continued to cringe as he ruined his engagement throughout this film.
1. Dominic James (Space Jam: A New Legacy)
Uggghhhhh. This ranking is the worst. I hate Dom James more than anything. When I posted my review of Space Jam: A New Legacy and went extremely negative on it, people said I just didn't like it because LeBron can't act or because it's a kids movie. That's not true. Dom James was one of the reasons I hated it. He is a super talented kid that makes video games with technology that is basically magic. When his dad doesn't completely support that, he turns to an evil algorithm to be his father figure. The algorithm manipulates him into being okay with trapping hundreds of thousands of people inside the WB ServerVerse. He's so annoying and whiny and I cannot stand him...besides the fact that he is willing to basically kill a ton of people because his dad didn't fully support his video game. This is a terrible idea for a character executed even worse.