We love us some martial arts heroes, we really do, but it’s usually the bad guys that stick in our brains. Whether it’s because of their unique sneers or devious laughter or just plain ol’ evilness we get a vicarious thrill out of the martial arts movie bad boys.
Here are a dozen bad guys for your viewing pleasure, in no particular order of evil …
12. Mike Barnes in Karate Kid
Not sure that any tournament that I’ve ever participated in would allow that kind of language and display of sportsmanship, but oh well, it’s Hollywood.
11. Han in Enter the Dragon
Not bad for a guy with interchangeable hands!
10. Ken Lo in Drunken Master 2
When Jackie Chan has trouble dealing with you, you KNOW you’re a bad boy …
9. Tong Po in Kickboxer
Yeah, I think I’d be a little intimidated too if my opponent was warming up by breaking structural elements with his freakin’ shin …
8. Lo Lieh as Pai Mei in Fist of the White Lotus
If you call a group of Shaolin warriors “amateurs” then laugh while you dispatch them, you’re pretty much a bad boy.
7. Wah Yuen, The Giggling General in Eastern Condors
This guy just freaks me out! That giggle alone would be enough to have me running away …
6. Dae Han in Best of the Best
Laughing after being called for a groin kick, AND an eye patch? Definitely bad boy.
5. Johnny Lawrence in Karate Kid
Not a full-out bad boy – more like bad boy in training, but still worthy of mention. Karate Kid‘s second entry here, only because Daniel is so easy to beat that everyone wants a turn.
4. Hwang In Shik as The Big Boss in Dragon Lord
Like Dae Han but without the patch – just a freaky white eyeball.
3. Kang Chin as Fung Sheng Wu Chi in Master of the Flying Guillotine
Blind, bushy eyebrows, a swastika on his robe, kills one-armed men for fun and oh, yeah – a deadly flying guillotine.
Can’t get much badder unless you’re …
2. Five Deadly Venoms
All of them, for the simple reason of wearing Kiss masks while they do their thing.
And the number one most bad-assed bad-boy in martial arts movies, without a doubt, remains …
1. Bolo Yeung as Anybody
If it looks like a beast, fights like a beast and sneers like a beast, it must BE a beast!