From the villains who were simply misunderstood by society to the walking embodiments of evil who had us saying our nightly prayers and hoping for protection from beings unseen, the definition of a Nollywood villain has evolved over the years.
Although we love these villains who get us in our feelings…
…no one comes close to the OG Nollywood villain.
Patience Ozokwor came to our screens and raised the standard for evil characters.
From the wicked mother-in-law who killed her son just to make his wife suffer to the sweet mother willing to do anything to ensure her daughter marries well and enjoys her life, she became the face of the Nigerian chapter of horrible mothers and mothers-in-law.
Every time she appeared with her side eye and matching scowl, we cowered in fear as her characters perpetuated EVIL.
But as adults, she has us seeing reason and taking her side in some of the ridiculous things she did. Yes, we can’t believe we’re saying this either, but her characters weren’t bad for the sake of being bad. They were bad because, as we all know now, to survive Nigeria, you have to move with a readiness to change it for anybody.
Some of her characters were dedicated to enjoying life and eating the fruit of their labour. Like when she played this relatable queen who refused to associate herself with suffering.
Granted, terrorising everyone, from her husband, the king, to her stepson, wasn’t ideal, but you can’t say her heart wasn’t in the right place because nobody actually wants to suffer.
Sometimes, Patience Ozokwor played the mother who showed her children love the only way she knew how to — with a firm hand, strong words and a condescending laugh or two.
Look, was she mean? Yes. Was she wrong? Not really. She was simply pushing her son to do better, and it actually worked because he worked harder and became RICH.
Patience Ozokwor’s characters weren’t the nicest people, but two things were for certain, you were going to hear them out, and they were going to get what they asked for.