Wolverine is what can happen when a person is forced to endure too much pain. While he has a muddy back story in the Marvel Comic universe, we do know that he was experimented on in very painful ways which led him to become extremely animalistic. Because of this ferocity Wolverine’s moral compass is skewed and he often does things in the heat of the moment that he later regrets. What keeps Wolverine from being a villain instead of an anti-hero is that he does try to do the right thing even if he often does it in the wrong way.
4. Han Solo
Han Solo is the epitome of the heartless mercenary turned good guy. In the Star Wars saga Solo is a smuggler who become involved with a galactic rebellion when he takes on a couple of passengers by the names of Luke Skywalker and Obi Wan Kenobi. They find themselves on a giant space station called the Death Star and seek to rescue Princess Leah but of course Han Solo expects a reward. By the end of the movie Solo has bonded with Skywalker and returns in the nick of time to save his young friend. Han Solo’s story may be kind of text book fare but the character does it with such flair that he will always be remembered as one of the great anti-heroes of all time.
3. Jackson Teller
Jackson Teller is a member of a motorcycle gang named the Sons of Anarchy. His motorcycle club does bad things including dealing in illegal guns. While Jackson Teller does bad things, he has certain values that all of us share. He cares about his family, he supports his friends, and he tries to do right by those he loves. However, while Jackson is mostly a good guy he also doesn’t hesitate to use violence to solve his problems which is what makes him an anti-hero.
2. Jack Sparrow
Captain Jack Sparrow is perhaps one of the most beloved anti-heroes in recent history. Sparrow is a pirate captain who has no real redeeming qualities but winds up earning our love and devotion anyway. He cheats, steals, lies, and betrays both friends and enemies and yet still we cheer for him because at the end of the day we know he helped other people out even if it was a bit unorthodox.
Batman is the epitome of what it means to be an anti-hero. Batman does not do things the way they’re supposed to be done or for the reasons we think they should be. Instead Batman ruthlessly pursues his vendetta against the underworld of our society by any means necessary. What makes Batman so fascinating to us is that he does what so many of us wish we could do when we get hurt and that’s go out and kick the bad guy’s butt. Maybe someday another anti-hero will come along who better represents the true complexities of the archetype but until then Batman is the top dog in the anti-hero universe.