Science Fiction's Scariest Priests and PreachersS

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Thirst's vampiric priest is hardly the first man of the cloth to fall prey to his darkest urges. We found plenty of soul-stealing, blood-sucking, eye-gouging, and just plain creepifying priests and preachers who haunt the churches of scifi and horror.

Science Fiction's Scariest Priests and Preachers

Sang-hyun (Thirst): If the path to Hell is paved with good intentions, Sang-hyun sprinted down the road and locked the gate behind him. In attempt to reduce the whole of human suffering, he volunteers to be a guinea pig for the Emmanuel Virus vaccine, but the experiment goes awry, leaving the priest with an unnatural thirst for human blood. And, though he tries to keep himself from killing, the comatose patients in the hospital where he works are almost too delectable to bear.

Science Fiction's Scariest Priests and Preachers

Ivan Isaacs (Priest): There are bad-ass priests...then there are bad-ass priests who sell their souls to the devil to become even more bad-ass. Fallen priest Ivan Issacs sells his soul to Belial for a second chance at life — and vengeance. Now an undead revenant sustained by only by his rage, Isaacs stalks the midwest with a blade, a sawed-off shotgun, and his superhuman strength.

Science Fiction's Scariest Priests and Preachers

Jesse Custer (Preacher): Jesse Custer may be one of the good guys, but get him in the wrong mood, and even God Himself shakes in His cowboy boots. He starts fights at the drop of a hat, is best friends with a vampire, and when he's bound to Genesis — granting him the powers of the Word of God — he drives his foes to suicide and even commands a fellow to do unspeakable things with his own genitalia. And he's on an ultraviolent mission to find God and make Him answer for His crimes against the world.

Science Fiction's Scariest Priests and Preachers

Reverend William Stryker (X-Men): Nothing says "scary" like an imagined genocidal mission from God. As if it weren't bad enough that Stryker is on a personal mission to exterminate all mutantkind, he has to use his televangelism to recruit new hatemongers. In fact, Stryker's power and charisma as a preacher are far more frightening weapons than the Sentinel arm he picks up in his anti-mutant travels.

Science Fiction's Scariest Priests and Preachers

Bishop Antony Lilliman (V for Vendetta): Certainly the whole notion of a fascist party that constantly spies on the whole of Britain is frightening enough, but party member Bishop Lilliman is particularly creepifying with his participation in the Larkhill experiments and his penchant for ordering up little girls like they're entrees. He's so busy attempting to molest a jailbait-outfitted Evey that he can't even heed her warnings about V.

Science Fiction's Scariest Priests and Preachers

Reverend Henry Kane (Poltergeist II): Adults might be inclined to give the creepy old reverend who comes traipsing into their front yard the benefit of the doubt, but kids and dogs know when "creepy" crosses the line into "absurdly evil." Listen to your dogs, Mom and Dad, or else you'll never know when Pastor Overly Friendly is a Satanic cultist with a penchant for murdering his followers and stealing their souls.

Science Fiction's Scariest Priests and Preachers

Brother Justin Crowe (Carnivale): The Methodist answer to radio priest Charles Coughlin, Brother Justin has the added title of Creature of Darkness. He uses his radio program as a mass-scale vehicle for his supernatural powers of manipulation, bringing people's greatest sins and darkest desires to life in horrifying visions. And where manipulation fails, Justin can always draw his strength from violence, mowing innocents down with a not-so-subtle scythe.

Science Fiction's Scariest Priests and Preachers

Caleb (Buffy the Vampire Slayer): In seven seasons of villains, Caleb may have been the most chill-inducing of the lot. Nathan Fillion gave him sufficient charm to understand how he managed to lure two girls to his death, and his link with the First Evil gives him the power to defeat even the Slayers. But Caleb takes on-screen violence in the Buffyverse to an uncomfortable level when he unflinchingly stabs his thumb into Xander's eye.

Science Fiction's Scariest Priests and Preachers

Brother Blood (Teen Titans): For centuries, the Church of Blood consisted of two members: a father who held what might be the prayer shawl of Christ (and its powers of invulnerability) and a son who would eventually slay him and take his place. But one of these Brother Bloods eventually realized that religion could be used not only to attain superpowers, but to take over the world. His brainwashing, baby-stealing, no-exit cult even managed to attract powerful government officials, despite the distinctly Satanic-sounding name.

Science Fiction's Scariest Priests and Preachers

Paladin Alexander Anderson (Helsing): Alucard is the most powerful vampire on Earth, but even he is thrown off guard by the Vatican's top vampire hunter, Father Anderson. Engineered with superhuman abilities and the capacity to regenerate, Anderson himself seems, at times, more monster than man. And he'd be less fearsome if his hatred for vampires didn't extend to all non-Catholics — and if he lost that rictus grin.

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Science Fiction's Scariest Priests and Preachers

Anthony Tipet (The X-Files): After getting out of prison for bludgeoning his wife to death, Tipet begins to preach the "Via Negativa," the notion that the path of darkness is the best way to get close to God. And he gets to put his philosophy into action when a super-amphetamine turns him into Freddy Krueger, granting him the ability to kill folks in their sleep, and — for creepy bonus points — opening his third eye.

Science Fiction's Scariest Priests and Preachers

The Confessor (Astro City): The Confessor may have been modeled on Batman, but he has something in common with one of the other priests on the list: Thirst's Sang-hyun. This one-time priest wears a cross to immolate his cursed flesh and focus his mind on something other than his relentless hunger for blood. But at least he's not too distracted to use his vampiric powers to fight crime.

Science Fiction's Scariest Priests and Preachers

Mr. Eko (Lost): Priest was only Mr. Eko's second job title. Earlier in life, he was a warlord and a drug smuggler, the sort of man who would threaten to burn down his own brother's church to get what he wants. And even after taking on the role of village priest to atone for a life of violence, Eko is still a man to be feared. When guerillas threaten his village and attack Eko, he still has, much to his dismay, the strength and killer instincts to take them down.

Science Fiction's Scariest Priests and Preachers

Father Grigori (Half-Life 2): Father Grigori is quite friendly when it comes to fellow zombie-killer Gordon Freeman, but he comes off as a bit unhinged as he wields his pump-action rifle (nicknamed Annabelle). Of course, if you watched your entire congregation get turned into headcrab zombies, you'd probably develop a few spooky characteristics, too.

Science Fiction's Scariest Priests and Preachers

Steve Newlin Jr. (True Blood): While not as eager to bloody his hands as the other preachers on this list, here's something creepy and off about televangelist Steve Newlin. It's not just his extreme hatred of vampires or his propensity for wearing t-shirts over button-downs. It's his unquestioning conviction in his moral and spiritual correctness, his ability to attract unfailingly like-minded worshipers, his ends-justify-the-means — and the sense that he's playing Dr. Jekyll to a gleeful (and possibly misogynistic) Mr. Hyde.