40 Greatest TV Villains of All Time

From serial killers to cylons, mobsters to murderous moms — counting down the TV characters you love to hate

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Livia Soprano, 'The Sopranos'

3. Livia Soprano, 'The Sopranos'

"If you want my advice, Anthony, don't expect happiness. You won't get it, people let you down ... It's all a big nothing. What makes you think you're so special?" Has any villain ever wielded a weapon half as effectively as Livia Soprano deployed pure nihilism? This monologue served as a backdrop for six(ish) seasons of her mafia-don son Tony's brushes with death and depravity. Sure, she tried to have him killed, but it was the joyless way in which she lived that truly made her an enemy. The character's story was tragically cut short by the death of actor Nancy Marchand, but in being struck down she became more powerful than Tony could possibly imagine; the damage she inflicted was irreversible.

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