Turtle Power! The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, created by Peter Laird and Kevin Eastman in 1984, have brought joy to fans across three decades. The TMNT were originally created as a satire on the dark and gritty superhero comic books of the ‘80s. However, they became one of the largest kids franchises of the decade with the insane popularity of their Saturday morning cartoon show. The Ninja Turtles dominated the late ‘80s and early ‘90s, with hundreds of toys, multiple comic books, and three feature films. After the hype had died down, the TV series was rebooted in 2003, with a fourth film released in 2007. The Turtles’ popularity was once again restored in 2012 when Nickelodeon aired a new CGI cartoon and announced production on a rebooted film series.
Everyone knows the story of the Ninja Turtles -- four pet turtles and a rat (or man, depending on the version) are covered in an alien mutagen that transforms them into humanoid creatures. Named for famous Renaissance painters, Leonardo, Michelangelo, Donatello, and Raphael learn Ninjutsu from their Master Splinter and defend New York City from the villainous Foot Clan, alien invaders, and other mutants out to harm innocent people. The TMNT have faced off against a number of enemies throughout their history, and we here at Screen Rant want to set the record straight and seek out out the best of the best. Here is Every Major TMNT Villain, Ranked Worst to Best.
Note: In order to count as a “major” villain, the character must be a recurring character in two or more forms of TMNT media, or be a primary antagonist in one of the TMNT films or series.
“Did you really think I'd make it that easy, you nasty little reptiles?”
The worst TMNT villain naturally comes from the worst TMNT movie. After the successes of the first two Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles films and the twilight of the 1980s cartoon, New Line Cinema wanted to cash in on the Ninja Turtles one last time. With the Shredder and the Foot Clan having met their demise at the end of Secret of the Oooze, fans ran rampant with speculation about who the Turtles would face in the third movie; could it be Krang? The Triceratons? One of the dozens of mutant enemies created over the course of the TV show? Nope. Instead, fans got Walker.
After being transported back to feudal Japan via a magic scepter in an effort to save April, the Turtles get caught up in a rebellion against a local warlord. This warlord is being armed with men and weapons by Walker, a British trader who has a tendency to dress up like a cowboy for some reason. Walker is just the worst. He has no powers, weapons that are no more advanced than a flintlock pistol or canon, and poses no real threat to the Turtles other than threatening April or innocent villagers. Not to mention he’s insufferable. His snarky, smarter-than-you attitude gets old very quickly over the course of the hour and a half film. It’s only fitting that the worst TMNT villain gets a lame death; Walker only fails to escape the Turtles because he forgot his pet canary and has to return for it rather than making his getaway. And then he gets knocked off a high wall by a catapult. Walker is the worst villain in TMNT history, and he deserves every single ounce of criticism he gets.
19 Tokka and Razhar
“Master say have FUN!”
Debuting in TMNT II: The Secret of the Ooze, Tokka and Razhar are two blockheaded mutants who use their brute strength to terrorize the Turtles. Serving as henchmen to the Foot Clan, these monstrosities were created by the Shredder when he doused a wolf and a snapping turtle with ooze in order to create his own team of super powered mutants. Only one problem -- in the words of the Shredder, “BABIES! They’re babies!”
Much like Bebop and Rocksteady in the cartoon, Tokka and Razhar act as the comic foils to stoic and evil Oroku Saki. The infantile nature of the mutants makes them act out in hilarious ways, including bonking each other over the head with a steel pipe to be funny or completely destroying cars for fun. Make no mistake, though, Tokka and Razhar are major threats to the Heroes in a Half Shell; their pure brute strength and size alone makes them formidable foes. Of course, they are also defeated by ingesting fire extinguisher spray and are easily tricked into eating poisoned donuts, so yeah…
18 Eric Sachs
“Inside those turtles is the most precious compound on earth - mutagen. I want you to drain every ounce of their blood, even if it kills them!”
Just read that line again. Read it closely. Kind of redundant, don’t you think? Now you can see one of the major problems from 2014’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles -- the writing was kind of awful. Eric Sachs, the primary villain of the film, took a huge hit from the abysmal writing. Nearly everything he says sounds like something a fourteen year old would come up with when asked to give an evil monologue.
Eric Sachs (portrayed by William Fichtner) was the primary antagonist in the TMNT reboot. Sachs is portrayed as a brilliant scientist and partner to Dr. O’Neil (April’s father) whose experiments led to the creation of both the ooze and the Turtles themselves. When Dr. O’Neil found out that Sachs was working for Shredder, he destroyed their lab and advised April to set the test subjects (the Turtles and Splinter) free. Rumor has it that Eric Sachs was originally intended to be the Shredder, but the director changed his mind when many cried foul at the whitewashing of a traditionally Japanese character. It makes sense. In the final version of the movie, Eric Sachs doesn’t really do anything significant; instead, he mostly monologues about how evil he and Shredder are. The only real bit of action the character gets is when, at the film’s climax, he tries to kill April and Vern as they attempt to steal the mutagen from his lab.
17 Dragon Lord
“I promise you this, human... for every minute that my people were wrongfully imprisoned by your Shinobi Shaman, you shall spend 10,000 years in torment.”
There are a lot of people who claim the 2014 TMNT movie or Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III are the worst incarnations of the beloved heroes. Perhaps they simply forgot about 1997’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Next Mutation, the series where a fifth turtle with mystical psychic powers was added to the team? Also, the series where the Shredder only makes a small appearance, April is nowhere to be found, and the turtle costumes make TMNT III’s look like the gold standard? Maybe people just push it out of their minds. Perhaps the only saving grace of The Next Mutation was its cool looking villain, Dragon Lord.
Dragon Lord is the leader of the Rank, a clan of ancient humanoid dragons who ruled the universe until their defeat and subsequent imprisonment in the “enchanted glass.” During the time of the TV series, the Rank were released from their imprisonment and swore to reclaim their stolen kingdom. Dragon Lord doesn’t have much going for him other than his looks; throughout the show’s only season, he never takes up arms or uses any mystical powers. Instead, he has his henchmen do all the dirty work while he sits around and plots. The villain desires the same ooze that transformed the Turtles in order to become all powerful in his quest to rule the world. However, there's no way to gauge his powers, so we can't really say how powerful he is. Dragon Lord may look awesome, but he’s no more threatening than any regular human foe the Ninja Turtles face.
Tatsu is the character from the TMNT movies that everyone knows, but nobody remembers his name. That’s understandable, as his name was only mentioned once throughout the entire series. Tatsu plays a large role in the Foot Clan as Shredder’s second in command and recruiter. This character’s backstory is unclear -- all that is known is that he came to New York around the same time as Oroku Saki.
The master martial artist looms over his students and opponents like a shadow, commanding the utmost respect from his pupils. He also inspires fear; the brutal martial artist almost kills one of his students during a rage-fueled punishment. Tatsu rarely speaks, but when he does, he uses his powerful rhetoric to inspire New York’s teenagers (including Sam Rockwell!)to swear their allegiance to the Foot.
The ninja master has gone up against both the Turtles and Casey Jones in the past, though both instances resulted in his embarrassing defeat. Maybe Tatsu should just stick to recruiting…
15 Lord Dregg
“I am Lord Vringath Dregg, ruler of Planet Sectoid, lord of all insect life in the universe, and bringer of your deaths!”
Lord Dregg originally appeared in the second-to-last season of the ‘80s cartoon as a replacement to primary antagonists Shredder and Krang. The wicked alien warlord would continue to be used as the series’ main villain until its cancelation in 1996. Dregg came to Earth as part of his mission of galactic conquest, where he was thwarted by the Turtles over and over. As the commander of the vessel Dreggnought, he commanded a bug-like race of creatures called the Technogang and was able to fool the world into thinking he was the hero and that the Turtles were out to conquer the planet.
Dregg was a much more serious villain than the heroes had faced in earlier seasons, making him a perfect fit for the original show’s “red sky” episodes (in which the sky was always a dark red and the subject matter was darker). In the 2012 animated series, Lord Dregg was introduced as the ruler of Planet Sectoid. Unlike the original Dregg ,this version appeared to me more insect-like, with four arms, the ability to fly, and the power to shoot webs out of his hands.
14 Max Winters/Yaotl
“Arise my brothers. Arise dear sister. The Stars of Kicaan align. All ye generals wake from your stone slumber!”
As the leader of an ancient brotherhood, Yaotl and his band were well on their way to ruling the world. Over 10,000 years ago, he learned of a mystical constellation that would only occur when the stars aligned every 3,000 years. This knowledge gave him the power of immortality, but it also transformed his best generals into stone and unleashed thirteen monsters on the world. These monsters completely destroyed his army, leaving Yaotl broken and alone. In modern times, the ancient general goes by the name of Max Winters.
Winters is the primary villain of the 2007 film TMNT. He is so far down this list because, although a villain, his master plan isn’t that villainous: he wishes to atone for all of his sins by bringing his generals back to life and returning the thirteen monsters back to their home world. Unfortunately, this plan involved hiring the evil Foot Clan, as well as bringing to the monsters to the most populous city in the country, undoubtedly creating chaos. To make matters worse, his revived generals don’t share the same goal. They want to instead use their powers of immortality along with an army of monsters to finish what they started and conquer the world. Winters isn’t the worst villain in TMNT history, but he certainly doesn’t fit among the likes of the top. Instead, this overlooked baddie deserves to be placed in the middle of the road where he belongs, mediocre and forgettable.
13 General Traag and the Rock Soldiers
“They hate war. They refuse to join armies.”
Dimension X is always depicted as being in a perpetual state of war; only the radical teenage Neutrinos are outside the conflict. One of the forces in this conflict are the rock soldiers. Although they were initially created solely for the ‘80s cartoon, the rock solider army and their leader, General Traag, quickly became staples in the TMNT lore. As their name implies, Krang’s legions are formed entirely of mutated stone (it makes sense, trust us), which makes them a powerful force to be reckoned with. Throughout the entire original cartoon, Krang and Shredder attempted on multiple occasions to open a portal to Dimension X so that Traag and his minions could cross over and conquer Earth (every attempt was thwarted by the Turtles). Despite repeated failures, Traag appeared in eleven episodes of the original cartoon, three episodes of the current series, and numerous issues of comic books both new and old.
The rock soldiers have been depicted in radically different ways in different mediums; they were no-nonsense buffoons in the ‘80s series, stone cold soldiers with a realistic design in the IDW comics, and lava-spewing giants in the current cartoon. No matter how they are portrayed, Traag and his rock soldiers have given the TMNT fits throughout the years.
“There's room for only one boss turtle -- me!”
As his appearance suggests, Slash is an evil mutated turtle created by Peter Laird himself. He's named “Slash” because of his tendency to leave a trail of broken and shredded debris in the wake of his rampage. Slash’s origins vary depending on which series he appears in -- in both the ‘80s and current cartoon, he starts off as a pet turtle. In the IDW comics, Slash is a lab animal at Stockgen (Baxter Stockman’s laboratories) who becomes mutated and crazy from the morbid experiments he is subjected to. There is also a third origin, based on Archie Comics, where Slash is an alien hailing from a tropical planet. He has a brutish personality and is shown to have an obsession with palm trees.
In the original TV show, the turtle is owned by Rocksteady and transformed via mutagen by Bebop when the lazy warthog wants someone else to run their errands for them. For some reason or another, the mutagen doesn’t give Slash human intellect like it did the Heroes in a Half Shell; instead, he has an infantile and extremely temperamental personality. He later reappears in an episode where he is granted super intelligence by an alien species.
In the 2012 series, the character starts off as Raphael’s pet, Spike. Spike has grown a disliking to the other turtles because he constantly hears his owner complain about them. Once he is mutated, Spike renames himself “Slash” and tries to take out Michelangelo, Donatello, and Leonardo. He is only stopped when Raphael calls him a freak. Defeated and humiliated, Slash retreats. He shows up again later, reformed and part of the mutant hero team the Mighty Mutanimals.
11 Agent Bishop
“You have no idea what you’re up against.”
Special Agent John Bishop is a character created for the 2003 TV series. As the head of the Earth Protection Force, he takes a special interest in the Turtle’s extraterrestrial adventures. In their first encounter, Bishop wished to dissect our heroes because he thought they were aliens themselves. Not much is known about Agent Bishop’s past -- the only concrete part of his story is that he is over two hundred years old and that his longevity was a result of being experimented on by aliens.
Bishop is cold, calculated, and manipulative, and he'll stop at nothing to get what he wants. He’s made deals with the Triceratons, blackmailed the Shredder, and experimented on the Turtles’ mutant allies countless times. Even though his methods are unethical and can sometimes cause mass casualties, the agent swears that everything he does is in the best interest of the Earth. In the short-lived 2003-series spinoff TMNT: Fast Forward, the Turtles are transported one hundred years into the future, where they discover that John Bishop has been elected as President of the Pan-Galactic Alliance (essentially the UN of the future). The character would show up again in the IDW comics as well as the 2012 series, although his personality and origins were radically changed.
“I would rather die on my feet than live on my knees.”
Leatherhead is one of the few characters who has appeared in every single incarnation of the Ninja Turtles (minus the film versions). Debuting in Tales of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #6, Leatherhead was an alligator that escaped from a pet store and was captured by the Utroms as a test subject. Like many of the villains on this list, the gator was exposed to mutagen, giving him superhuman strength and intelligence. He has acted as both friend and foe to the Turtles, depending on the series and situation.
In the ‘80s cartoon, the ferocious alligator is depicted as a pure villain. He speaks with a Cajun’ accent and allies himself with Shredder to take down the Turtles and their friends (and he's Leatherhead dumb as rocks). In the 2003 and 2012 cartoon versions, however, he is one of the most intelligent characters in the entire series, even rivaling Donatello in terms of brainpower. In both of these shows, he alternates between hero and villain. Although he's their friend, other villains constantly brainwash, trick, or torture him into fighting the Heroes in a Half Shell. Leatherhead’s primal instincts and sheer power make him one of the most dangerous forces the TMNT have ever faced.
9 Dogpound (Rahzar) and Fishface
"That is how you catch Turtles. And next, I'll show you how to fillet them.” - Fishface
Dogpound and Fishface act as the right-hand mutants to the Shredder in the 2012 TMNT cartoon. Although they both work together as lackeys of the Foot Clan, don’t mistake them for friends; the two act as adversaries just as often as they do as allies. Dogpound started out as Chris Bradford, a beloved celebrity martial artist (think Chuck Norris) who secretly worked as one of Oroku Saki’s henchmen. Fishface began as a Brazilian gangster named Xever Montes who also allied himself with the Foot. The two humans reluctantly worked together to track down Splinter and the Turtles before eventually becoming dosed with mutagen and transformed into Dogpound and Fishface.
Bradford, having been bitten by Shredder’s pet dog, turned into a large canine-like animal. Montes had been handling snakefish at a market earlier in the day and was thus turned into a giant fish. The two hated their mutant forms at first; Bradford was now large and bulky, and Xever had no legs. The Shredder, seeing the new potential in his old associates, had a pair of robotic legs built for Fishface and helped train Dogpound in new forms of combat to maximize his abilities. A few seasons later, Dogpound is knocked into another tank of mutagen during a fight at Baxter Stockman’s lab and reemerges as the well-known villain Razhar.
Dogpound and Fishface are two of the most memorable mutants to come out of the current cartoon series, as they essentially take the place held by Bebop and Rocksteady in the original. However, these two aren’t just cut and paste copies of the beloved henchmen; Dogpound and Fishface bring their own unique dynamic and personalities to the TMNT lore.
“The foot clan is owned by no one.”
As the Shredder’s second in command, Karai is a feared ninja warrior of the Foot Clan. She first showed up in the original Mirage Comics when she attempted to reunite warring factions of the Foot following the death of her master. She is a main antagonist in the 2007 film TMNT, where she plays a similar role. She is also a major character in both the 2003 and 2012 cartoons. The 2003 series shows her as Oroku Saki’s second in command, though she is torn between her duty to her master and her feelings for Leonardo. Her current incarnation has a similar role, but much more different -- she is Shredder’s adopted daughter who we later find out is really the long-lost daughter of Splinter. Not long after this realization, Karai is exposed to mutagen and transformed into a serpent-like creature.
No matter the interpretation of the character, Karai is depicted as being a warrior highly-skilled in the art of Ninjutsu. She is so powerful that she can take on all four of the Turtles at once and not even break a sweat. Her personality is cold, ruthless, and uncaring. The fact that she was chosen to be Shredder’s replacement in the original TMNT series speaks volumes about her importance to the story. Sadly, her appearances in both Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and TMNT: Out of the Shadows were a slap in the face to the character; despite being a general of the Foot Clan, she’s only given one or two lines of dialogue and gets defeated by Will Arnett's character (seriously).
“You sign off on this, or I twist your head off your shoulders. Got me?”
The character of Hun was created specifically for the 2003 cartoon. He is the head of the Purple Dragons, a group of street criminals who occasionally ally themselves with the Foot Clan. The Turtles and Hun clashed countless times over the course of the series, with the brute taking an extreme disliking to smart alecks Raphael and Casey Jones in particular. The character was so popular that he has appeared in every iteration of the Turtles since; he is a regular in the IDW comics, and has shown up in three different episodes of the current cartoon with a new Bruce Lee-inspired design.
What makes Hun such a dangerous character is not just his size and strength, but his cunning and sheer brutality as a crime boss. He can outsmart the Turtles as well as hold his own against any of them in a fight. There is no situation that Hun cannot intimidate his way out of. In the 2003 series, his band of criminals is second only to the Foot Clan. In fact, Hun and his Purple Dragons act as rivals to Shredder and his cronies almost equally as much as they act as allies. Although we’ve yet to see him in a feature film, Hun is easily one of the Turtles’ most deadly foes.
6 The Triceratons
“We Triceratons will eliminate these hideous aliens, freeing you of their vile plans. Unfortunately, your Earth will be annihilated as well.”
Surprisingly, the Triceratons were not initially created to be a TMNT villain. They were created by Mirage for a separate mini series featuring the Fugitoid (also a future TMNT character). Later, during the initial run of the TMNT comics, the two series crossed over, and the Triceratons have been major enemies of the Turtles ever since. This race of aliens has appeared in every single version of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles lore, from the comics to the shows. They even had a cameo in the recently-released film.
These dinosaur-like beings belong to a powerful Empire that has taken over much of the known galaxy. The 2003 series explains that the Triceratons used to be a peaceful race until their home world was accidentally destroyed. Now bound to mobile cities on asteroids, the species regrouped under a dictator and began their conquest of the universe.
The Turtles came into contact with the Triceratons during one of their many intergalactic travels. They crossed paths with Dr. Honeycutt (aka the Fugitoid), a scientist who was on the run from the ruthless soldiers. This propelled the Turtles into the mix, putting them on the run as they tried to make their way back home. Later on, the Triceratons would invade earth. The Triceratons have played a large role in several long-running and iconic TMNT stories, cementing their place near the top of this list.
5 The Rat King
“But what life do I have now? What am I, but a monster? And now all will fear me... because everything fears the monster!”
Despite being a recurring character in the ‘80s and 2012 cartoons, the Rat King is still a blank slate. The character started off in the original run of the Mirage comics, where he was killed off in the exact same issue. The character met a similar fate in the 2003 show. The Rat King’s origins vary immensely; the 2003 show gives him a backstory as a failed genetic super solider, and in the 2012 toon he was a scientist who injected himself with mutagen, giving him the ability to control rats telepathically. Other incarnations of the character have no backstory at all.
Nevertheless, the Rat King has always been a fan-favorite villain of the series. He lives in the sewers of New York City with an army of telepathically-controlled vermin that he intends to use to take over the world. It’s so campy that it makes for a perfect TMNT baddie! Not to mention he has a cool design; rodent teeth, a bandage-wrapped face, dirty rags, and sometimes a trench coat or hat make up the aesthetic of the character. With his control over rats, the appropriately named villain has been able to use his power to take control of Splinter and wreak havoc on the Turtles, striking them in their most vulnerable place. Over the years he has partnered with the likes of Shredder, Krang, and Leatherhead to put an end to the pesky amphibians.
“Now, wretched reptiles, you face the wrath of KRANG!”
Although he is now one of the most well-known villains in TMNT history, Krang the character has only appeared in a few versions of the series. He was introduced in the ‘80s cartoon and resulting Archie Comics series. He also made an appearance in the current IDW Comics. Most recently, the 2012 show featured a race of brain-like creatures calling themselves the Kraang who followed their leader, Kraang Prime (an interpretation of the beloved ‘80s character). The original Mirage Comics, as well as the 2003 series, featured the Utroms, a race of small pink aliens who resided within the bodies of robotic humans. The Utrom were the direct inspiration for the character of Krang.
Even if he’s seen many different redesigns and backstories, the Krang most people are familiar with is the snarky brain from the original Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon. As a powerful warlord hailing from Dimension X, Krang enlists the help of Shredder to bring his army across the dimensional portal and conquer the Earth. In his initial appearances, Krang was just a brain on a set of legs who constantly demanded for Shredder to build him a body. The “body” in question was a giant android that could grow to massive proportions and transform its limbs into deadly weapons. Although defeated by the Turtles on several occasions, Krang served as the puppet master behind everything throughout the ‘80s series, as well as the movie TMNT: Out of the Shadows. Aside from his design, people seemed to love Krang for his personality; he was sarcastic, cocky, and had a voice so distinctly different that you’d be hard-pressed to find anyone who could impersonate it today!
3 Bebop and Rocksteady
“Say your prayers, Toitles!” - Rocksteady
Everybody knows Bebop and Rocksteady. Even the most casual of TMNT fans could take one look at the buffoonish rhino and warthog pair and reminisce about their hilarious antics. Much like Krang, Bebop and Rocksteady were created specifically for the ‘80s TV show and then skyrocketed in popularity, becoming regulars in the comic books as well as appearing in the most recent film. The duo also returned for a brief stint in the 2012 series, albeit with different origins and personalities.
Both characters showed up in the pilot for the ‘80s cartoon as members of a gang that Shredder sends to rough up April O’Neil. After learning that he is up against a team of mutant turtles, Oroku Saki decides to make some mutants of his own. Using the DNA of a warthog and a rhinoceros, Shredder uses mutagen to create Bebop and Rocksteady. On their first attempt at attacking the Turtles, the two end up running into each other and knocking themselves out. The pair were mostly the butt of jokes during their original incarnation, piling up failure after failure on all of their missions. In the recent cartoon, as well as the most current comic series, they have been changed to be a more dangerous threat, even going as far as to beating Donatello to near-death with a sledgehammer. Despite their newfound competence, Bebop and Rocksteady went back to their old bumbling ways for TMNT: Out of the Shadows. Whether they are borderline-useless idiots or battle-hardened soldiers, the duo always appear as loyal friends. This is a mutant bromance made in heaven.
2 Baxter Stockman
“What on earth are you? I guess I’ll have to dissect you to find out!”
Putting Baxter Stockman above Bebop, Rocksteady, and Krang? We can hear the pitchforks coming out right now. But hear us out.
Baxter Stockman deserves to be #2 on this list. Baxter has been around in every single version of the TMNT as a primary villain. Yes, he serves as a lackey for the Shredder most of the time. But even then, Stockman only obeys out of fear of the vile leader. This becomes evident in the 2003 series where (quite cleverly, we might add) Baxter appears with a different part of his body gone after every failure. In the ‘80s show, Stockman turned on the Shredder the second he got a hint of power. Outside of the Shredder’s influence, Baxter Stockman is still one of the most dangerous villains the Turtles have ever faced.
Stockman is a genius scientist who first clashed with the TMNT when his mouse hunting robots tried to attack Splinter. Soon after, Oroku Saki hired the scientist to develop new weapons and technology for the Foot Clan. He also build himself several cybernetic enhancements in effort to squash the Turtles once and for all. In all instances, the Shredder grew tired of Stockman’s failures and attempted to dispose of him; in the ‘80s cartoon Krang throws him in a disintegrator, he is tortured with a mutagen collar in the 2012 cartoon, and the 2003 series has him ending up as a floating brain in a tank. In both the ‘80s and the 2012 cartoons, Baxter Stockman gets transformed into a giant mutant fly, giving him four arms, multiple eyes, and the ability to fly. The only tradeoff is that his mind is now unstable, making him a wild card in all of his appearances. With a brilliant mind, deadly inventions, and mutant/cybernetic powers, Baxter Stockman is one of the greatest TMNT villains ever.
1 The Shredder
“Tonight I dine on Turtle soup…”
Every single person reading this list knew who would be #1. Oroku Saki, or the Shredder as he is better known, is by far the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles' greatest enemy. Simply put, there are no turtles without the Shredder. Even the horrible TMNT: The Next Mutation and TMNT: Coming Out of Our Shells Tour included Ol’ Chrome Dome (even if it was a bit part). Saki is the leader of the deadly Foot Clan and the master of just about every single villain included in this list. Even interdimensional aliens respect the man; in the 2003 series, the primary Shredder was revealed to be a rogue Utrom name Ch’rell who took up the identity of the legendary Oroku Saki. As the leader of the Foot Clan, the Shredder is armed with spiked armor and an intimidating helmet on top of his frightening presence.
Shredder and the Turtles’ Master Splinter are forever intertwined; in some versions, Oroku Saki kills Splinter's owner Hamato Yoshi. In others, Splinter himself is Hamato Yoshi, and the Shredder betrayed and killed his loved ones. Either way, the Shredder and Splinter are bitter rivals destined to be locked in an eternal struggle to the death. Shredder has been portrayed in a multitude of different ways -- he was comedic in the original show, had cybernetic armor in the recent films, and was downright terrifying in the 2012 and 2003 cartoons. Our personal favorite portrayal of Shredhead has to be the first two TMNT movies. In them, Oroku Saki was a fearless criminal mastermind that inspired fear and loyalty from his Foot ninja. He took down every single one of the Turtles individually, only being stopped by being tossed off a building by Splinter/getting crushed by the debris of a bridge. The Shredder isn’t just the best TMNT villain; he is one of the greatest villains in comic book history ever.
So there you have it. Did we get it right? Was there somebody we left off? Be sure to let us know in the comments!
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