1. Angelica Pickles from “Rugrats”
Out of all the cartoons I watched growing up, 3-year-old Angelica Pickles from “Rugrats” was easily the best villain. If you think about it, she makes the perfect villain. Who would expect a toddler with pigtails to be as conniving, manipulative, and just plain mean as she was? As the oldest member of the “Rugrats” gang, Angelica used her life experience to trick the babies into doing her bidding. She lied to them constantly, because she knew they didn’t know any better. Her real talent was her ability to manipulate the adults into giving into her demands for toys, desserts, and gifts. I feel as though her character was written as a cautionary tale about what can happen when you spoil your children.
2. Miranda Killgallen from “As Told by Ginger”
We’ve all known somebody like Miranda. An insulting, mean, bitchy girl who is unpleasant to be around. As another character on “As Told by Ginger once commented, Miranda is “The only person who can make the clarinet sound bitter.” Miranda was brutally honest, and it was pretty hilarious. When Ginger asks Miranda if she has always hated her, Miranda replies, “I never really hated you, just disliked you intensely.” I didn’t want to like Miranda, but she had such clever one-liners it was hard not to. When her friend Courtney inquires about what a sleepover entails, Miranda says, “From what I understand they keep each other up all night with moronic stories and gorge on white flour based party foods.”
3. The Fashion Club from “Daria”
The members of the fashion club are Sandy, Stacy, Tiffany, and Daria’s younger sister Quinn. They took the whole club concept very seriously and had meetings, strict guidelines, and there was even a hierarchy with Sandy being president and Quinn serving as vice president. Their goals included staying popular, keeping up with trends, shopping, and dating only the richest and coolest guys. They shunned unpopular people like Daria as if they could catch a disease from the poorly dressed. In fact, Quinn wouldn’t even admit that Daria was her sister, only referring to Daria as her “cousin or whatever” or “the girl that’s always at my house.” The Fashion Club members were much too self-absorbed and shallow to be outwardly cruel to other people. They were the kind of mean girls who criticized what everyone was wearing behind their backs. There was quite a bit of in-fighting between members, with a constant power struggle between Sandy and Quinn.
4. Helga Pataki from “Hey Arnold”
I love Helga, but there is no denying that she was a mean girl. She insulted everyone she knew, bossed around her best friend, and had insulting nicknames for all her classmates. She was particularly mean to Lila, the new girl in school who captures the attention of all the boys, including Helga’s secret crush, Arnold. In an episode called “Ms. Perfect,” Helga becomes the ringleader of a group of girls who set out to make Lila’s life miserable. It was an interesting depiction of jealousy between girls and by the end of the episode, Helga redeems herself and shows what a good heart she actually has.
5. Courtney Gripling from “As Told by Ginger”
As the rich, snobby, “Queen Bee” of Lucky Jr. High, Courtney was worshipped by the other girls at school. She loved being the leader and expected people to give her the royal treatment. She was dismissive of people she didn’t consider cool, but in general she was too self-absorbed to really be a bully. She would have fit right in with the Fashion Club from “Daria.” She was also similar to Helga because there were many instances where she showed that deep down, she was a good person.