NBC’s Revolution premieres tonight, and judging by the pilot, the nicest thing we can say about J.J. Abrams’ latest effort to recapture his Lost success is — hey, look, Giancarlo Esposito’s in it! And so far, the role he’s playing isn’t much different from that of Gus Fring, Breaking Bad’s cruelest yet most soft-spoken antagonist. Whatever you think of Revolution, Esposito is unparalleled in his portrayal of dark characters, the slow-simmering evil he captures lingering with us long after we turn off the television and go to sleep. So, in his honor, we’ve compiled a list of the scariest and creepiest villains on TV. Find out whose mind games, occult origins, and outright insanity haunts our nightmares below.
Gustavo Fring, Breaking Bad
Walter White may be “the one who knocks,” and he’s also the one who hatched the scheme that finally toppled the Gus Fring empire, but he still can’t beat his former employer for sheer scariness. We’ve slowly discovered Walt’s motivations. By now, demented hubris drips from his every pore. Gus was creepier because we never got into his head, never found out exactly which event in his past had made him the cold, calculating, deadly meth kingpin and serene preparer of gourmet dinners who was introduced as “a cautious man” back in Season 2.