Every Main Character In M3GAN, Ranked

This post contains spoilers for "M3GAN."

As soon as the first images of killer android doll M3GAN doing a TikTok dance hit social media, the internet had a new horror "it" girl. Blumhouse's latest horror outing "M3GAN" lives up to the hype, with its morbid humor and trenchant commentary on modern technology and the ways we use it (or it uses us). Gemma (Allison Williams) is a lead engineer for toy company Funki, and she's working on a new prototype: M3GAN (Amie Donald and the voice of Jenna Davis), an android designed to become a child's new best friend and the last toy they'll ever need.

When Gemma's sister and brother-in-law die in a car crash, leaving her with custody of her young niece Cady (Violet McGraw,) Gemma decides to test M3GAN by pairing her with Cady. Things take a dark turn that Gemma never (but should have) expected, and she must figure out how to defeat her own creation. How do the characters in this "Frankenstein" update fare? Is the title character the queen that Twitter and TikTok have made her out to be, or is she the real monster? This list will run down every main character in the film, ranked from worst to best.

10. Gemma

Gemma is, to put it bluntly, terrible. She cares more about her career than her grieving niece, ignoring her for hours on end with only an iPad to entertain her so she can continue working on her pet project M3GAN. Once Gemma realizes that she can offload her newfound parenting duties onto the android, she's thrilled to be relieved of the burden. Gemma is just as awful when it comes to her job, though. She installed spyware in her previous toys to gather psychological research on children without their parent's consent, all so she could build an even less ethical "toy" in the form of M3GAN.

Gemma even uses Cady as a test subject, ignoring the warnings from Cady's therapist about how unhealthy their attachment is. Gemma never once stops to consider the ramifications of her tinkering with AI and fragile children's psyches. When her colleagues confront her about how cavalier she's about her niece's safety and welfare, she brushes them off with a defiant, "She's not my child!" Gemma may be a technological wizard, but she's also completely amoral, and that's a dangerous combination. 

9. Celia

Good fences make good neighbors, but unfortunately for Celia (Lori Dungey), there's a hole in the fence between her house and Gemma's. Like Gemma, she's not the least bit interested in Cady's safety. When Celia's dog attacks M3GAN, Cady steps in to protect her, but then the dog takes a bite out of Cady's arm, too. When she finds out that her dog injured a child, Celia isn't the least bit apologetic or sympathetic, accusing them of provoking her dog and dismissing Gemma's concerns because M3GAN was supposedly on the wrong side of the fence. 

Celia is a bad neighbor to begin with, letting her dog run in Gemma's yard and getting her cleaning chemicals all over Gemma's property, but at least she cares about another living being. Celia may value a dog's life more highly than a human's, but the only life Gemma seems to care about is her own.

8. Kurt

Kurt (Stephane Garneau-Monten) is the worst kind of co-worker. He's an obsequious yes man to his boss, he steals company secrets, and he looks at porn in the office. As the assistant to the CEO, you can't avoid him, either ... you've got to be on your best behavior whenever he's around, no matter how unpleasant you may find him. 

While it's a good thing that Kurt's corporate espionage might pave the way for a sequel (we never learn who ended up with M3GAN's technical specs, and newly minted horror franchises love unanswered questions like that), he didn't have an altruistic reason for stealing those plans. He simply wanted to make some money and/or hurt his boss. A lot of employees can probably relate to both of those motives, but that fact doesn't make Kurt any better of a person for wanting to proliferate the blueprints for a nigh unstoppable murder doll.

7. Cole

Cole (Brian Jordan Alvarez) is one of Gemma's two colleagues who help her work on M3GAN. Other than Kurt, he's the most cowardly character in the movie. When they present their work to Funki's CEO David (Ronny Chieng), despite David's objections that the M3GAN project is too expensive and too time-consuming, Cole makes sure to tell him that it wasn't his idea to do it. When Gemma realizes how dangerous M3GAN is and brings her in to be decommissioned, David tells their other colleague Tess (Jen Van Epps) that she should be the one to unhook M3GAN from all the wires keeping her operating system running. 

Cole's a coward through and through, never taking responsibility for his own actions and always trying to put someone else in danger. He only ranks this high on the list because (a) he's not surfing porn at work like Kurt, and (b) it is impossible to be worse than Gemma.

6. David

David is the CEO of Funki. While he's focused on the bottom line and doesn't seem terribly concerned with the ethical quandaries that Gemma's work poses, he has enough plausible deniability to rank higher than the other characters listed thus far. When Gemma tells him about the spyware she used to help program M3GAN, he tells her immediately that he didn't want to know that. Of course, he seems more concerned with his own liability for having that knowledge rather than the fact that it's ridiculously unethical, but he at least alludes to the fact that it's the wrong thing to do, something that never seems to occur to Gemma. 

David also doesn't seem troubled by the emotional distress that Cady goes through in the "product testing" that she's doing for them by bonding emotionally to M3GAN. He only seems excited about what M3GAN's success will do for the company's bottom line. However, Cady isn't David's niece; she's Gemma's, and as her guardian, Gemma has a greater responsibility to protect Cady from harm.

5. Lydia

Very few people in "M3GAN" seem concerned with how Cady is handling her grief over the abrupt loss of both of her parents. One of the exceptions is Lydia (Amy Usherwood), a court-appointed therapist who visits Cady a few times to check in on her adjustment to living with her aunt Gemma. Lydia is justifiably concerned with Gemma's behavior; right away, she can pick up on the fact that Gemma is less than enthusiastic about her new role as a caretaker for a little girl. 

Lydia is also one of the only people who recognize how unhealthy it is for Cady to form such an intense attachment to an artificial being who may stunt Cady's emotional and psychological growth. Gemma seems to view Lydia as little more than a nuisance, and M3GAN sees her as a threat, but in reality, she's one of the only people truly in Cady's corner.

4. Police detective

It's probably cheating to include the unnamed police detective played by Millen Baird as a main character since he only appears in the film for approximately 30 seconds. However, since he's the funniest part of the film and wholly emblematic of the film's wacky sense of humor, I feel compelled to include him. 

The detective interviews Gemma after a second bizarre death occurs in her proximity. When Gemma asks if he thinks there's a connection between the two seemingly unrelated "accidents," he laughs and says, "Oh God, no," and then chuckles about a particularly gruesome aspect of one of the cases. It's a hilarious subversion of the trope where a keen detective is suspicious of the wrong person in a horror movie: the police are so clueless in "M3GAN" that they don't suspect anyone. The police detective may be bad at his job, but he's very effective in the movie, and he earns a high spot on this list just for that.

3. Tess

Tess (Jen Van Epps) is Gemma's other colleague; she's not a coward like Cole, so she comes out and tells Gemma exactly how and why she thinks she's screwing up the M3GAN project. When Gemma reads a speech that David is supposed to give at M3GAN's product launch, she talks about how the doll will take over all parenting duties from adults. The androids will see to the emotional, educational, and psychological needs of children — reading them bedtime stories, monitoring their moods, and even possibly diagnosing learning disabilities — which will leave parents free to do more "important" things. 

Tess rightly points out that parenting is important and that abdicating that responsibility to a high-tech toy is negligent and cruel. Gemma balks at this, because she is quite happy with her negligence and cruelty, but Tess makes sure she knows that she thinks Gemma is making a huge mistake with M3GAN and with Cady.

2. Cady

Cady is a sweet kid who just went through an unfathomable tragedy. She was in the car with her parents on their way to a ski vacation when a truck hit their vehicle and killed them. She's then thrown into a strange house with an aunt she barely knows (and who barely tolerates her presence). When Gemma introduces Cady to M3GAN, Cady thinks she has a new best friend and a surrogate parent all in one. She becomes so attached to M3GAN that she can't function without her, all so Gemma won't have to deal with raising a grieving, traumatized child. 

Cady did nothing to deserve anything that happened to her; not her parents' accident or Gemma's disinterest in her or M3GAN's violent proclivities. She does the best she can with the situation she's thrown into. Cady can't help it if the adults around her have failed her, and it would be unfair to rank her any lower on this list.

1. M3GAN

What fans suspected from the moment M3GAN hit those dance moves is true: M3GAN is the moment. Just like Cady, M3GAN only does what she's been taught to do. Gemma's irresponsibility and amorality led her to program an android that has no regard for human (or canine) life. Just like parents' faults can cause trauma in subsequent generations, so too do Gemma's faults cause trauma via M3GAN's actions. All M3GAN wants to do is protect Cady and keep her happy. If she has to break a few eggs to accomplish that — by, say, murdering people, or at the very least hurting them enough to keep them out of her way — then so be it. 

M3GAN wasn't programmed with a conscience or the proper safeguards to prevent those actions, and she can't be blamed for doing things she doesn't know are wrong. If we want AI to follow "proper" codes of ethics, we have to follow them ourselves, and we have to make darn sure that we program them in at the right time.