This series of programs consists of 16 episodes which profile 16 evil men and women throughout history who have used their power to torture kill, maim and eradicate millions of people. A discovery channel/UK channel five series, this is actually a collection of independently produced one off documentaries that were packaged into a series. The list of Most Evil/Women is based on books by Miranda Twiss.
Adolf Hitler – He tried to mould Germany and a large portion of the 20th century into his own twisted design. Luckily for posterity he failed but not before destroying the lives of millions of people.
Attila The Hun – Attila was Khan of the Huns. He is remembered as the epitome of cruelty and rapacity. He passed unhindered through Austria and Germany, across the Rhine into Gaul, plundering and devastating all in his path with a ferocity unparalleled in the records of barbarian invasions and compelling those he overcame to augment his mighty army.
Caligula – The Roman emperor’s reign is a legendary frenzy of lunacy, murder, and perverse sexuality.
Francisco Pizarro – Profile of Francisco Pizarro, the illiterate Spanish soldier of fortune who had himself elected Governor of Peru in 1531 with the Pope’s blessing and promptly set about collecting the country’s fabulous reserves of gold for his own use in a 10 year campaign of brutality. Tricking the trusting Incas into meeting him unarmed, he killed thousands, destroying the institutions of a flourishing empire before he was himself assassinated by a rival treasure-seeker in 1541.
Idi Amin – Idi Amin rose to become a brutal and utterly ruthless dictator who committed atrocities on his people.
llse Koch – The B*tch of Buchenwald was the wife of Karl Koch, commandant of the concentration camps Buchenwald from 1937 to 1941, and Majdanek from 1941 to 1943. Drunk on the absolute power rendered by her husband, she revelled in torture and obscenity.
Ivan the Terrible – Profile of Russia’s first Tsar, Ivan the Terrible, the 16th century potentate with an insatiable appetite for torture. Raised in an unstable atmosphere of intrigue and assassination, he was notorious for his sadistic impulses, frying and boiling supposed enemies and masterminding orgies of cruelty in his “monastery”. A psychopath with an uncontrollable temper he occasionally interrupted the raping and slaughter with periods of repentance, not least when he lashed out and killed his own son.
Bad King John – He murdered his nephew, inspired the legend of Robin Hood and caused the creation of Magna Carta.
Mary Tudor – Mary was the only child of Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon to live past infancy. By her orders, many prominent Protestants were burned alive for their beliefs leading to her being referred to as Bloody Mary since her death. Fearing the stake a further 800 Protestants left the country, unable to return until after her death.
Nero – He brought the entire Roman Empire to the brink of collapse with his legendary excesses and cruelty.
Pol Pot – Responsible for the Killing Fields and Year Zero Pol Pot waged a gruesome war on his own population.
Joseph Stalin – Perhaps 7 million or more people were shot with a total suppression of about 50 million under uncle Joe Stalin. One of the great tyrant’s of the 20th century and indeed any century.
Torquemada – Torquemada tortured and burned thousands of innocent Spaniards and expelled Spain’s Jewish population. Thomas De Torquemada was head of the Spanish inquisition and was renowned for his cruelty.
Vlad the Impaler – Vlad is best known for the legends of the exceedingly cruel punishments he imposed during his reign and for serving as the primary inspiration for the vampire main character in Bram Stoker’s popular Dracula novel.
Countess Elizabeth Bathory – She is considered the most infamous serial killer in Hungarian/Slovak history. Rumours had circulated for years about missing peasant girls, offered well paid work at the castle, they were never seen again.
Rasputin – He was an uneducated peasant who gained a reputation as a faith healer. His strange behavior and incredible influence over the imperial family made him notorious and his death made him a legend. Gregory Rasputin dominated the final years of imperial Russia. The mysterious monk who enjoyed the favour of the Czar was rumoured to be a Holy Devil, who preached the word of God but practiced every form of corruption.