An Emmy Nomination Is Truly Justice for Barb

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By now, we all know who the real hero of Netflix’s Stranger Things is: Barb! Shannon Purser’s dowdy, sensible sidekick character may have never gotten her due during the drama’s first season, but it seems the TV Academy agrees with the Internet commentariat—because Purser just scored an Emmy nod for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series.

Viewers quickly latched onto Barb as a relatable avatar within the sci-fi world of Stranger Things—which might be why they were so steamed by Matt and Ross Duffer’s decision to give the character short shrift after the beginning of the season, virtually ignoring her disappearance (and the eventual discovery of her death) in favor of the search for Will. The Duffers have promised that Season 2 will bring justice for Barb, but now the TV Academy has done them one better.

In total, Stranger Things took home 18 nominations Thursday morning—including Outstanding Drama Series, Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series (for Millie Bobby Brown, who plays Eleven), and Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series (for David Harbour, who played Jim Hopper). In her category, Purser will be up against Alison Wright (The Americans), Alexis Bledel (The Handmaid’s Tale), Cicely Tyson (How to Get Away with Murder), Ann Dowd (The Leftovers), and Laverne Cox (Orange Is the New Black). At least it’s not a Demogorgon.

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Full ScreenPhotos:12 Netflix Villains Who’ll Make You Tremble with Fear

Claire Underwood, House of Cards

She may have started out as Frank Underwood’s cool, if slightly icy, wife who stands on the sidelines, but Claire Underwood (played by Robin Wright) quickly transforms into the show’s stealthy Lady Macbeth with a chic pixie cut, delivering quiet, but shocking blows to her enemies. “I’m willing to let your child wither and die inside you,” she once said to a pregnant former employee. “Am I really the sort of enemy you want to make?” Not. At. All.

Photo: Courtesy of David Giesbrecht/Netflix.

Frank Underwood, House of Cards

Well, if it isn’t the most corrupt, murderous fictional president to ever step foot in the White House. Frank Underwood (played by Kevin Spacey) is basically a caricature of a dirty politician—he’s ruthless, manipulative, power-hungry, and violent, willing to do or say anything to stay at the top of the food chain. Get in his way and prepare to be bowled over—or shoved in front of a moving train.

Photo: Courtesy of David Giesbrecht /Netflix.

Vee, Orange Is the New Black

Orange Is the New Black is filled season to season with new villains, from the Season 1 terror of crazed religious freak Pennsatucky (who is, thankfully, reformed now), to Season 4’s sadistic guard who forces an inmate to eat a baby mouse. But none have had the perfect open and close villainy of Vee (played by Lorraine Toussaint) in Season 2, a manipulative force who will do whatever it takes to get people to do her bidding, whether it requires shallow sweet talk or a blunt smack in the head.

Photo: Courtesy of Netflix/Courtesy Everett Collection.

Kilgrave, Jessica Jones

Kilgrave (played by David Tennant) showed us exactly what can happen when an incredible power gets into the wrong hands. The Marvel baddie had the power to control other people, a chilling gift he used to achieve violent ends.

Photo: Courtesy of Myles Aronowitz/Netflix.

Dr. Hunter Aloysius, The OA

He was a villain who swore he was doing work in the name of a greater good. Aloysius (Jason Isaacs) trapped literal angels in his basement for years so he could conduct scientific experiments on them—experiments that included killing them over and over and wiping their memories so they couldn’t remember what he did to them.

Photo: Courtesy of JoJo Whilden/Netflix.

Bryce, 13 Reasons Why

From Hannah’s perspective, technically everyone who got a tape is a villain of sorts. However, none were more insidious than Bryce (Justin Prentice), the jock who was not only your typical high school bully, but also later revealed to be a serial rapist.

Photo: By Beth Dubber/Netflix.

Rory Gilmore, the Gilmore Girls revival

We’re only kind of kidding. Sure, Rory (Alexis Bledel) was the precocious protagonist of the original series, but the all grown up version in Netflix’s revival is a bit of a narcissistic mess, consistently messing up career opportunities, sleeping with her married ex-boyfriend (although it takes two to play, Logan, you flawed, filthy rich philanderer) while straight up forgetting her actual boyfriend—poor Paul.

Photo: Courtesy of Saeed Adyani/Netflix.

Claire Underwood, <em>House of Cards</em>

Claire Underwood, House of Cards

She may have started out as Frank Underwood’s cool, if slightly icy, wife who stands on the sidelines, but Claire Underwood (played by Robin Wright) quickly transforms into the show’s stealthy Lady Macbeth with a chic pixie cut, delivering quiet, but shocking blows to her enemies. “I’m willing to let your child wither and die inside you,” she once said to a pregnant former employee. “Am I really the sort of enemy you want to make?” Not. At. All.

Courtesy of David Giesbrecht/Netflix.

Frank Underwood, <em>House of Cards</em>

Frank Underwood, House of Cards

Well, if it isn’t the most corrupt, murderous fictional president to ever step foot in the White House. Frank Underwood (played by Kevin Spacey) is basically a caricature of a dirty politician—he’s ruthless, manipulative, power-hungry, and violent, willing to do or say anything to stay at the top of the food chain. Get in his way and prepare to be bowled over—or shoved in front of a moving train.

Courtesy of David Giesbrecht /Netflix.

Vee, <em>Orange Is the New Black</em>

Vee, Orange Is the New Black

Orange Is the New Black is filled season to season with new villains, from the Season 1 terror of crazed religious freak Pennsatucky (who is, thankfully, reformed now), to Season 4’s sadistic guard who forces an inmate to eat a baby mouse. But none have had the perfect open and close villainy of Vee (played by Lorraine Toussaint) in Season 2, a manipulative force who will do whatever it takes to get people to do her bidding, whether it requires shallow sweet talk or a blunt smack in the head.

Courtesy of Netflix/Courtesy Everett Collection.

Kilgrave, <em>Jessica Jones</em>

Kilgrave, Jessica Jones

Kilgrave (played by David Tennant) showed us exactly what can happen when an incredible power gets into the wrong hands. The Marvel baddie had the power to control other people, a chilling gift he used to achieve violent ends.

Courtesy of Myles Aronowitz/Netflix.

Pablo Escobar, <em>Narcos</em>

Pablo Escobar, Narcos

Sometimes a show’s greatest villain can also be its star. Pablo Escobar (played by Wagner Moura) on Narcos is just that, and is based on the real life drug lord who got rich by peddling cocaine in Colombia, leaving a trail of blood and terror in his wake.

By Daniel Daza/Netflix/Everett Collection.

Count Olaf, <em>A Series of Unfortunate Events</em>

Count Olaf, A Series of Unfortunate Events

There are few things more villainous than committing yourself to a lifetime mission of killing children. Alas, that’s Olaf’s (played by Neil Patrick Harris) lot in life, a commitment that constantly requires him to take his cartoonish villainy to the next level, constantly disguising himself so he can finally rid the world of those damn Baudelaire orphans.

Courtesy of Joe Lederer/Netflix.

Reverend Richard Wayne Gary Wayne, <em>Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt</em>

Reverend Richard Wayne Gary Wayne, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt may be a comedy, but it still has one of the most twisted plot lines around, thanks to the Reverend (played by Jon Hamm). He trapped Kimmy and three other women in a bunker for 15 years, forcing Kimmy to marry him and tricking all the women into thinking the world was on the verge of an apocalypse.

Courtesy of Eric Liebowitz/Netflix.

Cottonmouth, <em>Luke Cage</em>

Cottonmouth, Luke Cage

He may be seductive, but he’s also a snake. Cottonmouth (played by Mahershala Ali) was one of the more ruthless overlords of Harlem, a man with a perilously short temper and an unquenchable thirst for the total destruction of his enemies.

Courtesy of Myles Aronowitz/Netflix.

The Demogorgon, <em>Stranger Things</em>

The Demogorgon, Stranger Things

Dr. Martin Brenner, Eleven’s evil father, might seem like the obvious villain on this show. And don’t get us wrong, he’s definitely a villain . . . but, when push comes to shove you have to admit you would rather be up against him than the Demogorgon (played by a suited up Mark Steger), the horrifying demon-like creature who lives in the Upside-Down and feasts on both fear and flesh.

Courtesy of Netflix.

Dr. Hunter Aloysius, <em>The OA</em>

Dr. Hunter Aloysius, The OA

He was a villain who swore he was doing work in the name of a greater good. Aloysius (Jason Isaacs) trapped literal angels in his basement for years so he could conduct scientific experiments on them—experiments that included killing them over and over and wiping their memories so they couldn’t remember what he did to them.

Courtesy of JoJo Whilden/Netflix.

Bryce, <em>13 Reasons Why</em>

Bryce, 13 Reasons Why

From Hannah’s perspective, technically everyone who got a tape is a villain of sorts. However, none were more insidious than Bryce (Justin Prentice), the jock who was not only your typical high school bully, but also later revealed to be a serial rapist.

By Beth Dubber/Netflix.

Rory Gilmore, the <em>Gilmore Girls</em> revival

Rory Gilmore, the Gilmore Girls revival

We’re only kind of kidding. Sure, Rory (Alexis Bledel) was the precocious protagonist of the original series, but the all grown up version in Netflix’s revival is a bit of a narcissistic mess, consistently messing up career opportunities, sleeping with her married ex-boyfriend (although it takes two to play, Logan, you flawed, filthy rich philanderer) while straight up forgetting her actual boyfriend—poor Paul.

Courtesy of Saeed Adyani/Netflix.



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