Choices, choices so many choices. I could have gone with Cell from Dragonball Z who creeped me out as a kid, I could have gone with Ladd Russo from Baccano! for his sheer entertainment value but in the end I had to go with, The Count from Gankutsuou The Count of Monte Cristo – and a quick warning this post will have spoilers for the end of the Gankutsuou series so you might not want to read any further beyond this sentence.
For a large part of the series the character of The Count is seen as a mysterious figure and friend of the stories lead Albert, but there is a constant foreshadowing that there is something more to this character throughout a story that paints many of the adults in the story as the villains. None of the characters in the series could really be seen as good as this is a tale of a thinly spun web of revenge and deceit and the spider in the center of this web is The Count himself who was once the fly caught in the web of those spiders around him.
The Count uses Albert throughout the story to manipulate those around him and that is what makes me think of The Count as one of the cruelest of villains in anime, though he does somewhat get his redemption at the end of the series when his past is revealed it does not excuse what he has done, nothing can justify the level of cruelty that is The Count of Monte Cristo. But of course if like myself you had read the source material by Alexander Dumas before watching the anime this would have not been a shock.