When you think of Die Hard, the first villain you'll remember is Hans Gruber. But the one that almost took John McClane down wasn't Gruber, it was his muscular sidekick Argyle. Yes, like the sweater. That's who almost killed McClane on his way up to the roof, and who almost took him down after Gruber had fallen to his death. That's who Die Hard's real villain was. That, or a failure to communicate. One of the two.
The clear villain of a film isn't always the big bad monster the the hero fights at the end. Sometimes it's the company that created him in the first place. Sometimes the sidekick is more deadly than the Big Bad he's obeying. Sometimes heroes aren't exactly what they seem. Villains aren't always that easy to recognize. It's not always the obvious answer, not always the person you suspect.
Here are some sidekicks, henchmen, supporting villains and mild annoyances that turn out to be the true antagonist of their films. Monsters like...
10. Doctor Octopus - Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse
Doctor Octopus has always been one of Spider-Man's fiercest enemies. No one else has dated his aunt, taken over his body, and dropped a building on him. His appearance propelled Sam Raimi's Spider-Man 2 into the stratosphere, helping make it one of the most critically acclaimed Spider-Man films of all times. When he teased in Amazing Spider-Man 2, some people actually started to care about that universe.
But it's Ock's appearance in Into the Spider-Verse that wins the prize. She first appears as an actor on an educational film, shown in high school, before it's revealed that she is working with the Kingpin of Crime, Wilson Fisk. At first it seems she might be pressured into it, but eventually you find out she's actually Doctor Octopus, and the giant Super-Collider at the certain of the film was her creation.
Kingpin might be bank rolling it, but the universe ending disaster is all Liv's. And unlike Kingpin or the other villains, seen arrested at the end of the film, Liv gets away. Don't be surprised if she turns out to be the main villain in Into the Spider-Verse 2, or the previously announced Spider-Girls film. She might even end up as the Thanos of the Spider-Verse. After all, her first appearance almost destroyed existence - who knows what she'll get up to next?