Cersei Lannister aka Lena Headey — Possession: Cersei may have that whole “sneering and brother-f*cking and ruining your life” thing down pat, but Headey was completely toothless as a mousey Victorian lesbian artist who gets thrown over for Jeremy Northam. Aw, look at those specs.
Gyp Rosetti aka Bobby Cannavale — The Station Agent: If you didn’t catch Cannavale’s performance as Rosetti in Boardwalk Empire last year, you missed out. Big time. But before he got into auto-erotic asphyxiation and mass-murdering, Cannavale made a career out of playing overgrown labradors. My favorite examples being Win Win and The Station Agent opposite none other than Tyrion Lannister.
Al Swearengen aka Ian McShane — Lovejoy: All the “c*cksuckers” in the world can’t overshadow the cuddly power of that mullet. Drink it in. Bonus cuddly points for Iorek Byrnison.
Benjamin Linus aka Michael Emerson — Parenthood: While Emerson’s most endearing role might be his real-life job as half of one of Hollywood’s cutest actor couples, I’ll never forget his post-Lost appearance on Parenthood as The Bug Man.
Patty Hewes aka Glenn Close — Hook: Given her long and impressive career, there are a lot of cuddly options for Close. I briefly considered both Mona Simpson and Sarah (plain ‘n tall). But her brief, uncredited cameo in Hook is just too weirdly kooky to skip.
Tywin Lannister aka Charles Dance — Ali G In Da House: How could I not?
Dr. Lecter aka Mads Mikkelsen — After The Wedding: In this award-winning Danish film, Mads runs an orphanage and moons over the lost love of his life. Not exactly terrifying. It is, however, a powerful film and he’s devastatingly good in it. Eat your heart out.
Delphine LaLaurie aka Kathy Bates — Fried Green Tomatoes: “Hunh?” you say. “Delphine who?” you say. Well if you think Kathy Bates isn’t about to make you sh*t your britches in the upcoming season of American Horror Story, you, friend, are sorely mistaken. So when things get extra terrifying, remember Towanda.
Vern Schillinger aka JK Simmons — Juno: Once you’ve seen Simmons in Oz, it’s hard to wrap your head around the other lovable things on his resume. But Juno is the perfect antidote.
Trinity aka John Lithgow aka Johnny Go Go — Third Rock From The Sun: Though Lithgow is, of course, an accomplished thespian and performer, I think it’s our memory of him as Dick Solomon that made Trinity so absolutely terrifying. Maybe that trick will work in reverse.
Alice Morgan aka Ruth Wilson — Jane Eyre: When I was digging up some inoffensive dirt on Ruth here, I discovered this mildly not safe for work video featuring Tom Hiddleston, ahm, administering to her needs. I felt it rude not to share. But the real dish on Ruth is, of course, her breakout role as Jane Eyre, fiction’s mousiest sexpot. Plain Jane is supposed to be in possession of some majorly passionate fire, and indeed she is, but she’s still a relatively mild-mannered governess. And though she may win your heart, she probably won’t slit your throat. Probably.
T-Bag aka Robert Knepper — Star Trek: Voyager: How can you be scared of a man with massive chin labia? Yeah, so maybe this guy tried to take over the Voyager but, I repeat, chin labia. Vaadwaur, please.
Constance Langdon aka Jessica Lange — Big Fish: Like Glenn Close’s, Lange’s CV is packed to the brim with options. I chose this role not because I think Burton’s film is the best on the list, but because this particular scene always shakes my heart.
Gustavo Fring aka Giancarlo Esposito — Trading Places: I think Esposito is supposed to be scary as a background convict in this perfect John Landis Joint. But the shock of seeing him and his babyface trying to act all tough behind Eddie Murphy is just too adorable.
Jim Moriarty aka Andrew Scott — Little White Lie: You’d be forgiven if you thought Andrew Scott was contemplating garroting that young lady with her own scarf. His wild-eyed turn in Sherlock made quite the impression. But this is actually a wholly inoffensive Irish rom-com that is basically Mumford meets a plunky Regina Spektor soundtrack.
King Joffrey Baratheon aka Jack Gleason — Whatever It Is He’s Doing Here With Puppets: Coz puppets aren’t scary at all, are they? Not even a little bit.
Mags Bennet aka Margo Martindale — Paris, je t’aime: I’ve flogged this vignette before and I’ll continue to do so until you’ve all seen it. Mags Bennet in a fanny pack, y’all. It’s sweeter than apple pie.