9. Joker - The Dark Knight
When you think of The Dark Knight, you think of the Joker. Hell, when you think of Christopher Nolan’s Batman Trilogy, you think of the Joker. However, with so many plot strands in The Dark Knight, he’s actually absent for a large chunk of it.
He only gets 33 minutes of screen time, which in fairness is more than most here, but his cultural impact is considerably larger than everyone here too. In the grand scheme of things, 33 minutes doesn’t seem that long. The whole movie clocks in at 2 hours 32 minutes, meaning Ledger’s Joker is only in one fifth of the movie; much less screen time than his impact suggests.
Heath Ledger’s subsequent death and his posthumous Oscar win have only deepened the mythos around the role, as well as the fact that no superhero movie since has really come close to it.
Avengers movies are spectacles and cause massive box office, but The Dark Knight stands alone as being a blockbuster superhero film, not just a superhero movie.
It’s the compellingly wicked presence he captures while he’s on screen, full of such mesmerising insanity, which means you’re constantly thinking about him, even while the plot is somewhere else.