Iconic Pop Culture Villains Quiz
- Question: Born on one of Saturn’s moons in the comic books, Marvel archvillain Thanos has what nickname?
- Answer: Considering the vastness of space, Thanos’s comic-book birthplace, the Saturnian moon Titan, is relatively close to Earth. For Marvel’s cinematic universe, the Mad Titan’s home is a fictional planet in a different solar system (though it retains the name).
- Question: When DC Comics let a call-in poll decide the ending of a cliff-hanger, what villain killed Batman’s sidekick Robin?
- Answer: DC Comics set up two 1-900 numbers for their poll: one for fans to vote for the Joker to murder Jason Todd (the second Robin) and one for fans to vote for the sidekick to survive. Robin’s fate was sealed by just 72 votes. As happens frequently in comic books, Todd was eventually brought back to life.
- Question: Which Rocky opponent callously says “If he dies, he dies”?
- Answer: After a brutal match in Rocky IV that leaves Rocky’s friend and trainer Apollo Creed in a fatal condition, Soviet powerhouse Ivan Drago shows little regard or remorse.
- Question: What villain’s red-and-green sweater was chosen specifically because its clashing colors are hard to look at?
- Answer: A Nightmare on Elm Street director Wes Craven read that red and green were two of the hardest colors to process visually when next to each other and used that factoid to pick Freddy’s striped sweater.
- Question: It’s sewer-dwelling Pennywise the Dancing Clown was inspired by what children’s story?
- Answer: Author Stephen King was inspired by the troll lurking under the bridge in “The Three Billy Goats Gruff” when creating Pennywise, who dwells underfoot in the sewer until it is time to feed.
- Question: In a popular novel, author Gregory Maguire gave what classic villain the name Elphaba?
- Answer: Maguire’s Wicked gave the name Elphaba to the villain of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. The name comes from the initials of original Oz author L. Frank Baum.
- Question: Superman’s archnemesis Lex Luthor is often portrayed with what physical feature?
- Answer: In the comic books, Luthor’s premature baldness is accidentally caused by a young Superman, fueling the villain’s hatred for the Man of Steel.
- Question: The mask worn by Scream villain Ghostface was used because it resembles art by what painter?
- Answer: While scouting locations to film Scream, the crew found a Halloween mask that they thought resembled Edvard Munch’s classic painting The Scream. After some attempts to create their own variation on it, the production team decided to just go with the one they had found.
- Question: According to the actor who played him, who was played as a combination of Katharine Hepburn, Truman Capote, and HAL from 2001: A Space Odyssey?
- Answer: For the role of Hannibal the Cannibal in The Silence of the Lambs, Anthony Hopkins said he drew on the personalities of Hepburn and Capote as well as the cold calculating artificial intelligence from 2001.
- Question: A Captain Kirk Halloween mask painted white was the original face covering for what horror villain?
- Answer: Because of Halloween’s tight budget, director John Carpenter said he had to repurpose a mask from a local costume shop rather than make a new one. His choices were a clown and Star Trek’s Captain Kirk; he went with the latter.
- Question: What villain’s on-screen costume was inspired by samurai helmets and World War II-era gas masks?
- Answer: Star Wars creator George Lucas was greatly influenced by fellow director Akira Kurosawa and Japanese culture. The Jedi follow a code of conduct similar to samurai, and their lightsaber combat mimics fighting with katana blades.
- Question: Which villain tells Marty McFly “Why don’t you make like a tree, and get out of here?”
- Answer: Actor Tom Wilson played the time-traveling bully Biff Tannen in the Back to the Future movie series. He improvised the tree line and helped popularize the term butthead.
- Question: Used as part of his villainous pseudonym, what character’s real middle name is Marvolo?
- Answer: Harry Potter archvillain Tom Marvolo Riddle rearranges the letters in his name to create “I am Lord Voldemort.” In the Spanish translation, his name was changed to Tom Sorvolo Ryddle to facilitate “Soy Lord Voldemort.”
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© 1939 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc.
© 1939 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc.