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Top 10 Eyepatch-Wearing Characters in Movies and TV

VO: Dan Paradis
Script written by Susan Faile. Nothing adds an air of mystery to a character like an eye-patch. Join WatchMojo.com as we count down our picks for the top 10 eye patch-wearing characters in movies and TV. For this list, we’re looking at unforgettable characters who donned an eye patch on either the big or small screen. These eyepatches are iconic and make the characters that wear them unique, despite it being a sign of a weakness. Special thanks to our users Edwin Valenzuela and Johnny X Wang for submitting the idea on our Suggestions Page at WatchMojo.comsuggest
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Transcript
Script written by Susan Faile.

Top 10 Eyepatch-Wearing Characters in Movies and TV


Nothing adds an air of mystery to a character like an eyepatch. Welcome to WatchMojo.com, and today we’re counting down our picks for the top 10 eye patch-wearing characters in movies and TV.

For this list, we’re looking at unforgettable characters who donned an eye patch on either the big or small screen.

#10: Claus von Stauffenberg
“Valkyrie” (2008)

Even though he was badly injured in battle during World War II, which included losing an eye, Claus von Stauffenberg didn’t hesitate to go after a man who ranks as one of the most evil in modern history: Adolf Hitler. In this historical thriller based on the real-life 20 July plot, we follow the German Army Colonel as he gives up everything to take on his own country’s government and military in order to put an end to the Holocaust – with his eyepatch cementing his heroic image.

#9: Odin
“Thor” (2011)

While most people trade in cold, hard cash, Asgardians tend to do things differently. In the comics, the King of Asgard traded his right eye to Mimir, his uncle, in exchange for wisdom. As is often the case, his sacrifice was for the good of his realm as well as the rest of the universe. This one-eyed leader displays an unshakable sense of duty and justice, which he tries to impart to his headstrong sons, Thor and the adopted Loki – and the eyepatch just makes him seem all the more fatherly and wise.

#8: Colonel Saul Tigh
“Battlestar Galactica” (2004-09)

When a character is 2000 years old and a veteran of numerous wars, like this Galactica line officer, it’s not surprising to expect some wear and tear on his body. Eventually, the physical damage included a missing eye, so the Colonel adds an eyepatch to his uniform. Even though he’s technically a robotic being, Tigh has to cope with several very human frailties, such as bad habits and marital problems, along with some not-so-human ones, like false memories. The eyepatch is thus very fitting.

#7: Alastor ‘Mad-Eye’ Moody
“Harry Potter” franchise (2001-11)

In a prime case of making lemonade out of lemons (plus a little magic doesn’t hurt either), this hunter of Dark wizards uses the loss of his eye as an opportunity to improve on nature. He does this by creating a replacement with special powers. Moody’s new eye does things his real eye never could, including letting him see through solid objects, which helps him maintain “constant vigilance” as an Auror in the Ministry of Magic. With a nickname like “Mad Eye,” are you even surprised?!

#6: Nick Fury
Marvel Cinematic Universe (2008-)

Sometimes it’s hard to tell if the director of the superhero-filled law enforcement agency known as S.H.I.E.L.D. is a good guy or a bad guy. He lives by his own code, but always gets the job done. Fury is also unique among eyepatch-wearing characters—he still has his eye, but covers it because an injury has badly damaged his vision. While we’re sure we’d still be a fan of him without it, there’s no denying that the patch makes him all the more badass.

#5: The Governor
“The Walking Dead” (2010-)

As if zombies and home décor involving fish tanks full of severed human heads wasn’t scary enough – after losing an eye in a fight, the leader of the Woodbury survivor settlement ends up donning an eyepatch that leaves no question about exactly who’s boss. Both charming and brutal, this complicated character presents a fascinating portrait of a man teetering unsteadily on the edge between sanity and psychosis, with each loss and disappointment driving him incrementally further from his own humanity.

#4: Elle Driver
“Kill Bill” (2003-04)

Proving that all of the toughness an eyepatch can bestow a bad guy is magnified when the wearer is a woman, this trained assassin didn’t let the likelihood of decreased depth perception affect her abilities with martial arts and swords. In another move that goes beyond anything offered by one-eyed guys, Elle “California Mountain Snake” Driver also demonstrates how to wear an eyepatch with style, combining it with her long, blonde waves. She even manages to find a patch to match a nurse’s uniform.

#3: Emilio Largo
“Thunderball” (1965)

What’s more menacing than an international criminal threatening to blow up a significant portion of the English-speaking world unless he’s paid £100 million? An international criminal who wears an eyepatch while threatening nuclear destruction, that’s what. Largo is willing to kill anyone who gets in the way of his plans, and isn’t even afraid to take on James Bond. This one-eyed character made such an impression that he inspired a tribute in Number 2, the eyepatch-wearing bad guy in “Austin Powers.”

#2: Snake Plissken
“Escape from New York” (1981)

One way to tell a guy is tough is when the other characters are so surprised to see him because they’d heard he was dead. Although he’s missing an eye, this war hero turned bad guy turned aspiring good guy is very much alive. The eyepatch-wearing ex-con is on a mission to save the President from the city that never sleeps, which is now a walled-off maximum-security prison where chaos reigns. But, even when working for the police, this antihero, portrayed by Kurt Russell, makes his own rules. And you gotta love him for it.

Before we reveal our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions:
- Dilios
“300” (2007)
- General Chang
“Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country” (1991)
- Daisuke Serizawa
“Godzilla” (1954)
- Daniel ‘Big Dan’ Teague
“O Brother, Where Art Thou?” (2000)
- The Deacon
“Waterworld” (1995)

#1: Reuben J. ‘Rooster’ Cogburn
“True Grit” (1969; 2010)


Whether played by John Wayne or Jeff Bridges, Rooster would have probably been a lot less, well, gritty, without the eyepatch. The hard-drinking, quick drawing U.S. marshal, who’d killed at least 60 men, finally meets his match in a 14-year-old girl named Mattie Ross when she hires him to help her find the man who killed her father. Over the course of the movie, the one-eyed lawman shows that there’s much more to him beneath the surface of his tough guy demeanor. While the Rooster of the 1969 novel didn’t don the patch, we know the Rooster of the silver screen certainly wouldn’t be the same without it.

Do you agree with our list? Who are your favorite eyepatch wearing characters? For more fascinating Top 10s every day, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com.
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