(Associated Press)

It can be the first source for finding out about the death of an icon, provide a platform for a major announcement from a celebrity, or even help spread a revolution’s message in short bursts.

And it can also do the opposite.

Twitter allows untruths and parody to flourish with fake accounts, created by anonymous comedians who crack jokes behind the guise of a famous name.

Here’s a sample of the best fake Twitter handles to follow for real laughs.

Ralph Fiennes as the “real” Lord Voldemort in Warner Bros. Pictures’ “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.” (Warner Bros.)

Sitting in front of a computer, and without the task of having to bring down a 17-year-old to distract him, Voldemort rips apart pop culture with his own brand of snark.

With more than 2.1 million followers, ol’ Voldie shares how evil villains such as himself process celebrity news, awards shows, and general everyday annoyances.

He recognizes the evil streak in Oscar-nominated stars: “Rooney Mara hates people almost as much as I do.” He weighs in on holidays: “Happy Presidents Day! Your country is doomed!” And sometimes, he just feels like bringing people down to his level of negativity: “Mondays are a perfect way to remind me that I absolutely hate everything.”

Voldemort’s account is perfect to follow if you’re a casual Harry Potter nerd or a fervent pop culture fan.

(Professor Snape should get an honorable mention. He brings his own sense of caustic humor, but with only half a million or so followers, he’s not quite up to He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named’s level. Poor Severus. Always misunderstood.)

Nick Nolte’s Mugshot (@Nick_Nolte)

With most of his Tweets referencing extensive drug use, explicit language and sexual encounters of the third kind, this account caters to a very specific sense of humor. However, it’s easy to imagine the Oscar-nominated actor saying any of the quotes on the page. (Just take a look at his recent Academy Award red carpet interviews — the guy will say anything.)

Although most of his 140-character soliloquies allude to being on drugs (ketamine and ether, to name a couple), there are a few safe-for-work bits throughout. At the very least, he has some helpful decorating tips: “I made a snow man of my own. Actually, it’s more like three raccoons covered in coke that I duct taped together, but still, festive.”

Dr. Tobias Funke (@drtobiasfunke):

Narrowing down the best character of the short-lived “Arrested Development” series is nearly impossible — I mean, c’mon! — but Tobias Funke is definitely among the top three. Funke has a knack for saying the wrong thing at the wrong time in the wrong context with the wrong tone, but he is universally loved for it (just not necessarily by his family).

Funke’s Twitter account follows along the same lines, with constant foot-in-mouth anecdotes that have no choice but to be misinterpreted. (“Happy that the basketball players in Dallas have finally reached down deep and got a hold of that prized package! Huzzah!” or “Enjoying a Maine lobster roll. It’s true what they say. There’s nothing like biting into a soft bun filled with plump tail meat.”) The world’s first analyst-therapist only has a little more than 15,000 followers, proving that he is just as unique a taste as his brilliant, three-season show was.

The actual actor, Gary Busey, stands in a giant hamster ball at the 2011 MTV Movie Awards. Naturally. (Mario Anzuoni/Reuters)

The fake Busey tweets several times a day — almost all of them inappropriate for work — and much like the real Busey, doesn’t censor himself in the slightest. One of his few work-safe tweets: “Do fathers who live in barns yell at their kids like ‘Hey! Open that door! Do you live in a regular house?!’” His Tweets are filthy, mean, and of course, entertaining.

A sculpture of Jesus in Kiev. (Sergei Supinsky/Agence France-Presse via Getty Images)

Jesus gets right to the point in his Twitter bio: “Carpenter, Healer, God.” His Tweets are short and sweet, always funny, and usually a little blasphemous. (“Surprised Mom with breakfast in bed this morning. She wasn’t really into the Bloody Mary though. Grounded again.” Or this nugget from Christmas Day: “What did you get for Christmas? I got responsibilities. Again. (Thanks, Dad.)”

He tweets infrequently at best, but give the guy a break — he’s busy doing other things.

Honorable mentions:

Elizabeth Windsor (@Queen_UK): “The sun is out, the sky is blue, there’s not a cloud to spoil the view and one’s reigning. Reigning in one’s heart.”

Bill Clinton (@PimpBillClinton): “I guarantee you that Rick Santorum owns a flip phone that he keeps on a belt clip.”

Courtney Stodden (@CourtneyStodden): Okay . . . so this one’s not actually fake, but there’s no way it’s real either. “Getting ready for a mysteriously melodious meeting w/my marvelous & mesmerizing men . . . meow!”

List your favorite fake Twitters in the comments so we have some new nuggets to add to our list.