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Like a gladiator about to meet his fate
—The Aquabats, "The Baker"
A certain stock kind of villain, the Evil Chef is just that. They're cooks who are deliberately being evil, but it does not quite matter how exactly they're trying to achieve that goal, just that their primary role is as a chef/cook and what not. They may or may not be using their cooking skills to attempt to defeat the heroes, or they may just have the chef characteristics as something completely unconnected to their evil plans. They usually come in one of two types, the French chef type with a very much pointy mustache and the 'school canteen chef'.
Not to be confused with Lethal Chef, as characters listed on that page are not always evil, and nor are the characters listed here always actually bad at cooking. This is for evil/killer cooks that cause death and destruction, often by their cooking (and deliberately) while Lethal Chef is for people who cannot cook that often accidentally cause various effects by just how bad their cooking is. They make great villains because they work with lots of different types of big knives and various things easily converted to weapons (frying pans, rolling pins, meat tenderizers...).
Also has about a 50% chance of being a case of The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything, in that many of these characters may not actually be shown to cook in the story. In stories in which the main characters are animals, they of course run the risk of being edible; in this case the Evil Chef is less nastily evil, since he's just doing his job, but is still very threatening.
Today's theme ingredient is... You! The heat will be on! May overlap with the Chef of Iron, if the Evil Chef fights his or her enemies using cooking implements as weapons or such like. Also see I Ate What?, Stab the Salad. Most rivals in a Cooking Duel are merely an Opposing Sports Team, who may not even be negatively characterized; but there can obviously be an incentive to make such a character into an actually evil enemy.
Anime and Manga
- Shirota Masakage from Majin Tantei Nougami Neuro, the episode villain from the 1st anime episode and chapters 4-6 of the manga.
- Since the main character in Chuuka Ichiban is a chef, it is logical to make all of his main enemies chefs as well. That, and the fact that it is a Cooking Duel series.
- A couple of actively evil chefs showed up in Iron Wok Jan, most notably
Jan AkiyamaGo "Taoist Gogyo" Gyokai, who was actually trained as a culinary assassin.
- There was an evil (not to mention really gross) chef named Wanze in One Piece. Granted, he was mostly an excuse for crack, but he was threatening and he was a villain.
- Bianchi is an assassin from Reborn who intentionally uses her status as a Lethal Chef to full effect.
- Xellos from Slayers invokes this trope intentionally when he creates a soup "potent enough to kill a Gold Dragon with one bite."
- Monsieur Goan in the Kirby anime.
- The villains of Fighting Foodons.
- Tonio from Jojo's Bizarre Adventure: Diamond is Unbreakable seems to be this at first, as Okuyasu once tries his food but starts puking and crying as if he had been poisoned, which also happens toa dog that tried some of it. It's soon seen that Tonio's meals are Power-Up Food (courtesy of his Stand), so Okuyasu and the dog soon feel extremely well and healthy; and as long as one keeps his/her manners and hygiene in the dude's kitchen (which Josuke found out the hard way), he'll be quite nice.
- The heroine of Hack Slash had one of these as her mom.
- There's also the minor villain Hibachi Devil, who looks like an evil chef, though is never shown doing anything related to cooking.
- Captain Underpants once fought cafeteria ladies who were aliens in disguise trying to turn the schoolchildren into zombies.
- Emeril Lagasse became one in a Mad Magazine parody of his Cooking Show, in an imagined Novelization by Stephen King.
- An episode of The Batman Adventures saw The Joker kidnap an aspiring cartoonist and force him to illustrate his exploits for a series of comic books. One of his capers involved infiltrating a banquet and (while "disguised" in a toque and a white smock) slipping paralytic Joker venom into the diners' soup. ("Poisonous? That would be the poison. It complements the cilantro nicely, don't you think?") The poison didn't actually kill anyone who took a slurp of the soup, but it did leave them compulsively grinning - and paralyzed long enough for Joker to saunter right up to all them and beat them senseless with a large mallet. (And, of course, Joker being who he is, he did this all For the Evulz - and in this case also for publicity.)
Films -- Live-Action
- In the Pusher trilogy, Milo the Serbian druglord. He fancies himself a great cook, and tries to feed people his creations, but they're not very good. In fact, he accidentally gives all his thugs food poisoning in the third film, leaving him rather defenseless to a brewing gang war.
- Pamela Voorhees of the original Friday the 13 th was the cook of Camp Crystal Lake. Her villainy was in no way related to her cooking though, but involved knifing, axing, and occasionally arrowing people to death in revenge for her son, who drowned in Crystal Lake because the counselors who were supposed to be watching him were getting it on instead.
- The slasher film The Cook, where there's something a little off about the new foreign chef hired to work at a sorority house.
- Swelter from the Gormenghast novels (and TV mini-series).
- Long John Silver was the ship's cook in Treasure Island, as well as the Disney space-and-steam Treasure Planet.
- Faquarl from The Bartimaeus Trilogy can transform into any shape he chooses, but is inexplicably fond of taking the form of a meat-cleaver wielding chef.
- Harry Kressing's novel The Cook features the mysterious Conrad, who uses his cooking skills to win over and then control his victims.
- A Song of Ice and Fire has the ghost story of the Rat Cook of the Nightfort, who chopped up a visiting prince and fed him to his father in a pie. For breaking Sacred Hospitality, the gods turned him into a giant albino rat who eats his young.
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer has an evil cafeteria lady; Buffy has to foil her plan to poison everyone.
- The Frenchman in Good Eats may qualify for this.
- Seinfeld's Soup Nazi? Well, not so much evil as oppressive to customers...
- Shockeye, from the Doctor Who serial The Two Doctors. He's obsessed with finding out what things taste like, up to and including human beings, and "tenderises" one of the Doctor's companions - ignoring all the screaming as being completely irrelevant.
- In the DVD for the Volkerball tour, Till Lindemann of Rammstein dresses up as one of these during Mein Teil. He then proceeds to "cook" Flake Lorenz.
- The music video to "Asylum" by Disturbed features a cannibalistic chef who keeps body parts in his fridge. While the protagonist is escaping from the doctors, the chef upon seeing him chases him down with a chainsaw, cuts him up in a Gory Discretion Shot and tosses his remains in a bloody cooking pot. The dish resulting is a stew made up of ambiguous red meats garnished with an eyeball. This entire situation turns out to be a delusion of the patient who's actually back in his padded cell... except a second later he's served and then force-fed the same stew by the doctors.
- In the music video of Bad Idea by Lemon Demon, one of the zombie Mooks appears to have been a chef.
- Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street: Mrs. Lovett encourages Sweeney Todd's Roaring Rampage of Revenge for humanitarian purposes.
- The Cat from Ho Nk neatly fits this trope, as, throughout the musical, he is trying to eat the main character, and, in the 1998 recording, was portrayed by Clive Rowe with a thick French accent.
- The Cook- also called Peter Lamb (but, like most characters in the play, mostly subject to Everyone Calls Him "Barkeep" in Bertolt Brecht's Mother Courage and her Children is rather like this- fat, lecherous, fairly amoral and insensitive to his disturbed stepdaughter. Doesn't seem to put the women off, for some reason...
- Plenty in the Mario series, but Chef Torte from Super Mario RPG comes to mind. He fights in a boss battle and (unknowingly) creates a giant spellcasting wedding cake.
- Large Fry in Wario Land, a giant Cheep Cheep who happens to be one of the occasional Flunky Bosses who happen to be quite strong on their own (which is extremely annoying, since he never stops calling down his buddies. Ever).
- Wildcat in Breath of Fire II is not only an evil chef, he's also That One Boss.
- Chef Kawasaki was one of these in the Kirby games, but not so much in the anime.
- The Tales (series) has the Wonder Chef who is good and will teach the party recipes (effects vary by game, but are usually along the lines of post-battle healing), but Tales of Symphonia had a short sidequest involving the Wonder Chef's arch-nemesis- the evil Dark Chef.
- Chrono Cross has a literal Hell's Cook as one of the many characters you can get to join you. You fight his Super Powered Evil Side before his Heel Face Turn.
- You have to defeat one of these in the game Alone in The Dark II.
- One of the chapter previews for Disgaea Hour of Darkness mentions that Etna must resist "the dark side of cooking"
- In Makai Kingdom, "Chefs" were a character class, with weaponized frying pans and cooking powers.
- Gourmand, one of the playable characters in Power Stone 2. For whatever reason, his Super Mode involves donning a dinosaur/dragon costume that allows him to breathe fire.
- Kingdom of Loathing has a few Evil Chef monsters, such as the Knob Goblin Master Chef, the War Frat Grill Sergeant, and the War Hippy Baker.
- With a sufficiently deranged player and/or sufficiently large dose of Alternate Character Interpretation, the Pastamancer and Sauceror classes could fall under this trope as well.
- One of the more annoying monsters in Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles were the Tonberry Chefs of Moschet Manor, which were... well, Tonberries dressed like chefs and using gutting knives as weapons.
- In Final Fantasy VIII, beating Tonberries got you their Chef's Knives as well.
- The aptly-named multi-part Runescape quest "Recipe for Disaster" involves the PC accidentally freeing an evil food-based magician known as the Culinaromancer.
- The knife-throwing chefs in the Medal of Honor series.
- In Command and Conquer: Renegade, the player will sometimes be attacked in Nod bases by flamethrower-wielding chefs.
- Yodai "Now we're BOILING!" Higashizawa of The World Ends With You.
- The main villain of Octodad is a sushi chef who's the only one to realize that the protagonist is an octopus masquerading as a human and for some reason is hell-bent on destroying him.
- The Dead Rising series features two evil chefs: Larry Chiang from the first game, and Antoine Thomas from the second game. Larry intends to turn an injured Carlito Keyes into mincemeat, and Antoine is attempting (and, it is heavily implied, has even succeeded) to turn survivors into "the perfect dish".
- Umami of Okamiden is Orochi's head chef. At least until Charity was kidnapped and forced into the job. Instead of hatching a plan to help her escape and reclaim her position as head chef, she finds it more beneficial to cook her.
- The Black Dragon Group from Suikoden II. Their leader Jinkai plans to use the Moon Bird Recipe for some sort of world domination plan through cooking. Though by the end of the Cook-Off minigames, he got better and was implied to have mended his ways.
- In Dexters Laboratory, Dexter grows a beard to become rugged, and is believed to be his hero Action Hank. He later teams up with Action Hank to fight beard-themed villains, one of which is a chef with a beard that acts like a blade.
- Lunch Lady Ghost in Danny Phantom.
- Grandma Stuffums from Codename: Kids Next Door (who attacked with waves of living food such as liver and vegetables.)
- Louie from The Little Mermaid is only evil insofar as aquatic animals are concerned. In context, that's evil enough.
- A similar chef can be seen for a few seconds (although in shadow) in the earlier animated Disney film The Aristocats during the scene where Duchess, Thomas O'Malley, the kittens, and the Gabble sisters run into Uncle Waldo.
- Skinner from Ratatouille isn't exactly dangerous, but he is greedy and sneaky and has an abysmal sense of business ethics.
- A Halloween special of The Simpsons had Lunchlady Doris become one of these when the faculty took to cooking the students.
- There is also a story where Homer becomes a food critic, and the other critics tell him he gives too many good reviews so he starts insulting everyone's food (not just restaurants, but Marge, too). This makes the restaurant owners angry and a bunch of them get together to kill him with a poisoned eclair at a food fair. Most of the restaurant owners aren't normally seen in villain roles, but the French chef who appears (and is the main person behind the poisoned eclair) probably counts.
- Chef from South Park became one in his last appearance.
- Chef Hatchet from Total Drama Island is probably better known as a Lethal Chef but he certainly gets a lot of enjoyment out of tormenting the campers.
- The Purple Pieman of Strawberry Shortcake.
- Sizzlor! Who subjected Invader Zim to torturous servitude in the bowels of the planet Foodcourtia.
- The Breadmaster in The Tick, along with his sidekick Buttery Pat, had a recipe for evil.
- Titanium Chef and Oleander from Sushi Pack. Titanium Chef even has an evil recipe book.
- The Butcher and Chuck the Evil Sandwich Man from Word Girl.
- One of the minor antagonists in The Snow Queen's Revenge is a fat pig woman who wants to cook Brenda, a giant bird.
- The German movie Mullewap: Das große Kinoabenteuer der drei Freunde features an evil, sophisticated wolf called Maitre Wolf who kidnaps a lamb to cook it for his birthday. When the three heroes come to save her, the wolf manages to put two of them into the pot as well and cook them until the third hero returns to save them.
- In Medieval times cooks were considered naturally inclined towards evil. Good cooks lured a soul into pleasures of gluttony, while bad cooks corrupted the body. Furthermore, kitchens were often depicted as images of Hell, where master chef ruled as the head devil while his assistants butchered innocent animals and roasted them on spits. As such, cooks were often stereotyped as cruel, slow-witted gluttons and brutes.
- Working your way up as a young chef is ridiculously tough, at least in major restaurants. Not all restaurantuers favour head chefs being Evil Divas (though a few, like Gordon Ramsey, assuredly do) but even in calmer establishments, the junior staff work huge, punishing shifts and have daunting standards to reach every time.
- Due to the nature of the video, this is probably also a delusion and he's actually being fed normal food while the chef he saw was likely a normal chef trying to help him