14 Best Fictional Liars EverChrissa Hardy

Let’s be honest and admit that we all love liars. Liars are fascinating. They have skeletons in their closets. They get away with all kinds of shenanigans. I’m a serious advocate for honesty and open communication in all situations, but if we were all like that, life would be pretty dull. The liars shake things up. You want to know their stories and why they lie. (Just like the crew in We Were Liars by E. Lockhart, available now! Enter our giveaway below and you could score a free copy!) How do they sleep at night? How do they justify their dishonesty? What is going on in their heads? Liars are unsolvable puzzles, which makes them a whole lotta fun to watch. It’s probably best to clear the liars from your social circle in real life, but on screen or in a book? Embrace them for their entertainment value.

Here’s a list of the best liars in fiction…ever. I’m sure there are quite a few that I missed, but these are definitely my favorite fibbers.

*SPOILER ALERT* This post contains some spoilers. I am not responsible for your ruined fictional entertainment if you keep reading.

1. Lady Olenna Tyrell – Game of Thrones

This granny has NOT lost her edge. She’s driven and determined to reach the Iron Throne (even now via her granddaughter Margaery) and will do whatever it takes to make that happen. Lady Olenna has got some murderous tricks up her sleeve. Those who have seen the latest episode know what I mean.*wink face*

2. Benjamin Linus – LOST

I experienced this thing I called “LOSTbumps” several times throughout the series, which were goosebumps so intense and unique that I had never experienced them before and haven’t since the show ended. One case of LOSTbumps occurred the moment Henry Gale showed his wicked smile in the hatch, the very moment our beloved castaways realized his whole identity was a lie. He was indeed an “other” and it was the most chilling exposed lie I’ve ever seen. It happened again in the first few moments of the season three premiere, when we see the Oceanic plane break apart in the sky and Ben immediately goes into President Other-mode, hurling directions at Ethan and Goodwin to infiltrate the two groups of survivors. And then…”I guess I’m out of the book club.” LOSTbumps everywhere.

3. Emily, Hanna, Aria, and Spencer - Pretty Little Liars

An obvious four-way tie for these fabulous fibbers. They know how to lie, deny, deceive, and avoid exposure unlike any high school clique in history.

4. Creed Bratton - The Office

Who IS Creed Bratton? Is he homeless? Where did he come from? There are only three things we know for sure about Creed – 1) He loves stealing things. 2) He sprouts mung beans on a damp paper towel in this desk drawer – giving him a “distinct old man smell.” 3) Being able to scuba is of the utmost importance to him. After all, if Creed can’t scuba, what’s this all been about? What has he been working toward?

5. Claire Underwood – House of Cards

Oh, were you expecting me to give old Francis the spotlight here? Sure, he’s a world-class scoundrel, but none of his accomplishments would be possible without the support and complimentary ruthlessness that Claire provides. She would do anything to make sure they reach the top. Imagine them in Westeros?! The Iron Throne would be theirs, for sure.

6. Plutarch Heavensbee – The Hunger Games

This Head Gamemaker gave the rebellion the final push it needed to become an all-out war, and risked a whole lot to keep Katniss alive to continue her work as The Mockingjay. He did put her in danger multiple times, but he knew she could obliterate any obstacle placed in her path. Which she did.

7. George Costanza – Seinfeld

His whole life is a lie! Latex salesman importer/exporter, real estate agent, Yankee employee, and aspiring architect – this short, stalky, bald man was all hustle. Art Vandelay, at your service.

8. Selina Meyer – Veep

As the Vice President, Selina is constantly trying to keep the upper hand in the game of politics. Her team is a hardworking hot mess, but their screw ups are hilarious and their cover ups are even better.

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  1. Holden Caulfield’s entire outward personality is a lie. Gatsby’s entire life is a lie. Those two and Creed are my favorite liars.

  2. Severus Snape! I found myself so twisted rethinking this character as evil or not evil. I questioned Dumbledore as much as Harry. He lied completely to everyone around him except one man, who later dies and he is left alone in a Web of lies. He died without credit just satisfied in honoring his one love.. sigh. A terrific liar for a noble cause.

  3. My favorite fictional liar is Holden Caulfield from The Catcher in the Rye. You have to have a certain degree of respect for a character who outright admits he is a liar, “I’m the most terrific liar you ever saw in your life.” His lies don’t really hurt anyone (except perhaps himself at times) and often were more exaggeration and creative storytelling. He became a master of using his lies to deflect personal questions and take attention off himself.

  4. Hands down Mulan from both the Disney movie and Chinese legend. She lies about her identity to save her father from going to war. Growing up she has always been one of my favorite fictional characters. Most of the time we thing of liars as bad guys, when in reality this is not the case. Though Mulan lies about her identity she does this out of fierce loyalty to her family, her country, she shows great selflessness, determination and bravery. That’s why she is my favorite liar.

  5. I think that Creed from The Office is my favorite liar. I probably wouldn’t have even thought of him though without reading your list. Typically, liars are deemed “bad” and are unlikable characters, but somehow I always catch myself cheering on Creed and having sympathy for him. He manages to be a lovable character, even though we never know what to expect from him or when to believe him. He is very unpredictable and completely untrustworthy, but we all manage to like him anyway.

  6. The best fictional liar that sticks in my mind is Tom Ripley from The Talented Mr. Ripley. Ripley convinces everyone he’s someone he’s not, gains the trust of even the most suspicious, travels to exotic locales at others’ expense, deceives and manipulates everyone including police and private investigators, kills to protect his web of lies, and eventually walks off (scot-free) with a fortune. What’s not to love?!

  7. Dexter Morgan from “Dexter” is definitely missing from this list! He is always lying and manipulating the thoughts of those around him. Even over time when his cover story unfolds to those he cares about, he still maintains those lies with others.

  8. Since I just watched the Veronica Mars movie, I would have to say Veronica Mars, she always lies and deceives to get to the truth but at least it’s always fot the greater good!

  9. definitely Dexter Morgan from Showtime’s “Dexter.” his cover life became so real for him and he found himself genuinely caring for his sister Deb, Hannah, his son Harrison, and especially his late wife Rita and it made for some truly fantastic character development

  10. Severus Snape is hands down the best liar. We spent close to 6 books hating him but tolerating him, then outright loathed him up until the very end of book 7. Someone who can successfully lie to the most evil powerful wizard in the world has got my respect.

  11. Many good suggestions. I would add Olivia from Scandal and, perhaps my favorite, Oliver Queen from Arrow!

  12. Oh definitely Emily Thorne. Come on, she’s the ultimate liar

  13. I’m going to go old-school and go with either Dimitri from Anastasia (his whole character plot is finding a look alike to fool the dowager empress!) or Josie Geller from Never Been Kissed.

  14. Briony from Atonement. Even though her lie is more of a misunderstanding than an outright lie.

  15. Severus Snape, of course! He had lies all over the place, but in the end is heart was where it needed to be. Everything he did was for the love of a woman who would never return his feelings. It’s heartbreaking and noble all at the same time.

  16. Veronica Mars. She lies to people she loves and sometimes the people whose cases she’s working, but oftentimes she does so to protect them or to get to the underlying truth in a case.

  17. Sam from Garden State. She couldn’t even help it! She’d lie about silly things that didn’t matter, then feel guilty and admit she lied. And how adorable she is, it’s impossible not to forgive her!

  18. since someone already said Snape, who would easily be my favorite, I’m going to go with my second favorite: Rafe from Openly Straight by Bill Konigsberg. Rafe changes schools and doesn’t tell anyone that he’s gay so he can dump his label of being gay. his lie falls apart, obviously. but it’s great to read about a character that just wants to get rid of a label, and I feel like it’s very relevant to our label-driven society.

  19. Walter White from Breaking Bad – absolute mastery of the craft and foresight of lying. His lies have saved and ended multiple lives, and he did manage to fool his son for like 61 episodes. And Shawn Spencer from Psych, master of the silver tongue. He can come up with anything at all with phenomenal speed.

  20. Easy. Severus Snape. He lied to he-who-must-not-be-named and ultimately sacrificed his life as a devotion to Lily and the child she died protecting! Liar for good and love. Doesn’t get better than that!

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