For this proposal, I am going to discuss Albert Garrick, the main antagonist of the W.A.R.P. series by Eoin Colfer. While this series is nowhere near as popular as Artemis Fowl, I believe Albert Garrick is the best villain Colfer has ever written.
What's the Work
Originally, W.A.R.P. was meant to be an Artemis Fowl book, but Colfer decided the material was too dark, and made it its own series. W.A.R.P. is a YA sci-fi action comedy series centered around 2 protagonists, Riley and Chevy Savanno. Chevy is a teen FBI agent and Riley is from Victorian London. time travel brings the two of them together and they go on adventures through time trying to defeat dangerous villains.
Who is he/what has he done?
Albert Garrick was born in a slum called The Old Nichol in Victorian London. Most of his family died of cholera, and his father drank himself to death. Albert became the apprentice of a magician called the Great Lombardi. After Lombardi died, Garrick took his place. He had an assistant named Sabine who he was obsessed with. However, after he thought she was being unfaithful, he murdered her onstage during a trick and then ran away.
Garrick was arrested for the murder and was sent to fight in Afghanistan. In Afghanistan, Garrick realized he enjoyed killing. When he returned to London he became an assassin. He studied many forms of martial arts and combined them with slight of hand to create his own personal style. He became extremely skilled as a killer. When Jack the Ripper was terrorizing London, Garrick became jealous of all the attention he was getting. Garrick managed to find jack and kill him. Before he died, Jack bragged he had killed 14 people. Garrick responded he had killed twice that in a month.
Eventually, Garrick was hired to kill an FBI agent named Jack Riley who had travelled back in time as part of the WARP witness protection program. Garrick murdered Jack and his wife. He saw their son and decided to take him as an apprentice. He tried Riley to be an assassin, but also viciously abused him. Riley attempted to run away several times, but he was caught and beaten.
Garrick was sent to assassinate Charles Smart, the scientist who invented WARP. He tried to force Riley to kill him, but Riley refused. At that moment, Smart's time key activated and sent Riley to the present. When Riley was in the present, WARP agents were sent back to Neutralize Garrick. Despite their advanced weapons, Garrick killed every single one of them easily. He then came to the future, combining with Charles Smart's son Felix and taking in a massive amount of energy. This gave him powerful abilities and knowledge of the future. In the future, he attempted to kill Riley and Chevie. Riley pretended he was willing to join Garrick, in order to save Chevie. The three went to Charles Smart's lover to find a new time machine. Garrick tried to murder her, and Riley and Chevie used this chance to escape back into London.
Garrick chased them back to London. When he found out they were being protected ny a gang called the battering Rams, he brutally murdered 3 of their agents and pursed them back to the original place where Charles Smart was murdered. Riley tricked Garrick into grabbing a time key, which, in the absence of a time machine, sent him into the time stream undirected.
In the timestream, Garrick fell through a hole which deposited him into England in the 1600s. In a small town called Mandrake, Garrick used the mutations coming out of the time hole to convince the town that witches were real, and then executed many innocent women for no reason.
Eventually, Garrick realized he was immortal. He wandered the earth, seeking excitement. He even tried to turn good by entering a Monastery, but grew bored and murdered all of the monks. He decided to wait out time until he could get revenge on Riley. He laid a trap for Riley and Chevie and ambushed them in a prison. He dealt Chevie a blow which would have killed her, but before he could kill Riley, they got sucked back into the time stream. They fell again into the 1600s.
Garrick riled up the townspeople and convinced them that Riley and Chevie were witches. He managed to capture Riley but he escaped. Riley met up with former FBI agents stuck in the past, and the remains of Charles Smart, whose essence was trapped in that era.
Garrick managed to capture Chevie. His goal was to brutally torture and murder her by pouring molten silver down her throat, and then launch her corpse into the hole which he hoped would seal the timestream so it wouldn't kill him. Riley and the FBI agents attacked Garrick and his troupes. The essence of Charles Smart attack Garrick and removed the elements of the timestream that made Garrick immortal. Garrick declared he would murder innocent people in the town to fulfill his goal, causing one of his own henchmen to shoot and kill him.
Garrick is easily the most heinous character in the series The villain of the second book, Clayton Box, is also very evil, as he commits mass murder to form a totalitarian empire. However, Box had many mitigating factors such as loving his mother to the point of breaking down crying when her ashes were desecrated. Box also wasn't openly malicious like Garrick, and genuinely believed his empire would improve the world. Garrick is the only villain in the WARP series who enjoys murder and torture to such an extreme extent.
(It should also be noted that unlike many of Colfer's other books, this does not take place in the Artemis Fowl universe, so he cannot be compared to villains like Opal Koboi)
Garrick has what in other circumstances could be considered a tragic backstory. However, he is so evil that he goes well beyond what could be excused by his backstory. He also doesn't really care about anyone. He claimed to love Sabine, but was merely possessive of here, which is why he murdered her when he saw her flirting with someone else. It is pretty clear he didn't care about Riley. He only spared Riley as a baby because Riley reminded him how much he enjoyed having an audience. He viciously abused Riley, and tried to kill him when Riley refused to join him.
Garrick is extremely heinous, with a massive kill count, as well as many counts of torture. He is easily the most evil character in the series and has no real mitigating factors. he easily qualifies as PE.