There have been so many incredible fictional characters in pop culture. Here is a list that I made up for the top 10 fictional characters of all-time in movies and television. In fact, it is really the top 11 because I could not justify cutting one of these characters. It was really tough trimming down this list.
JUST MISSED THE CUT ~ Kosmo Kramer (Seinfeld), Creed Bratton (The Office), Kevin Arnold (The Wonder Years), Michael Scofield (Prison Break), Ricky Bobby (Talladega Nights).
ELEVEN ~ Dwight K. Schrute, The Office. One of the most quotable television characters in history. Multiple websites are dedicated to Dwight quotes. He’s intense. He has his own bobblehead (which I have in my office). He has his own functioning beet farm. He operates his own agri-tourism place (similar to a bed and breakfast). He has his own crossbow range. He is a volunteer law enforcer. He can raise and lower his own cholesterol with his mind. He wants to be frozen when he dies, so he can come back stronger. He is a karate purple belt. What is there not to love? Favorite Dwight quote, “Reject a woman and she will never let it go. One of the many defects of their kind – also, weak arms.”
TEN ~ Optimus Prime, Transformers. I am talking about the cartoon that I loved so much as a kid, not the movie that came out recently. This character is incredible. He is the commander of the Autobots. One minute he is a semi-truck cruising down the road; the next minute he is a gun-firing, fighting machine. We can all learn about some leadership tips from Optimus Prime. He has changed my entire thought process about semi-trucks.
NINE ~ Jack Bauer, 24. Earlier this year, FOX announced that because of the recent writers’ strike season seven of 24 is being postponed till January 2009. I was bummed because that means that I do not get my yearly dose of Jack Bauer. This guy is a machine. He’s tough. He’s patriotic. He’s hard. He kills a lot of terrorists. He keeps his word. He operates well on no sleep. Two favorite Jack Bauer quotes, “I’m gonna need a hacksaw.” (After he out of the blue killed some guy and is going to cut his head off and put in a duffel bag.) And, “The only reason you’re still conscious is cause I don’t want to have to carry you.”
EIGHT ~ Darth Vader, Star Wars. The best villain of all-time. This former Jedi master turned Emperor apprentice is extremely intimidating. Dressed in all black, sporting arguably the best mask of all time, a light saber on his hip, the creepy asthmatic breathing, the deep James Earl Jones’ voice, the strength to pickup grown men off the ground by the neck, and the power of the dark side. Put all that together and you have an amazing bad guy. Turns out that he has some good guy in him as well.
SEVEN ~ Ron Burgundy, Anchorman. One of the most quotable movie characters in history. The lead anchor and rock of the Channel 4 Action News team of San Diego possesses a voluptuous vocabulary and a magnificent mustache. Burgundy has a way with the ladies that is unlike any other. He oozes confidence. He has a great fondness for a good glass of scotch, poetry, his dog Baxter, and he also plays a mean jazz flute. Favorite Rob Burgundy quote, “I’m gonna punch you in the ovary, that’s what I’m gonna do. A straight shot. Right to the babymaker.”
SIX ~ Dr. Gregory House, House. This tv doctor is unlike any other tv doctor on medical dramas. This medical medical genius thrives on solving medical puzzles. He leads his team of diagnosticians in really wierd cases that most doctors would give up on. He treats people like dirt. He makes fun of people. He is brilliant. One of his life mottos is that everybody lies. He seems to not have any filter on his speech. He is the guy that always seems to say what we all sometimes think but would never say. He has a sweet cane and has his own style. He rocks some awesome facial stubble at all times. Very complex, interesting character.
FIVE ~ John McClane, Die Hard movies. This movie character has been around since 1988 when the first Die Hard hit theaters and was seen in theaters as recently as 2007 in Live Free or Die Hard. Total we have gotten to know John McClane through four different movies. The best way to describe him is a Jack Bauer-type with more humanity. He is tough, machine-like, and hard like Bauer. However, he also has a much lighter side that is very funny. My favorite thing about this character is his frequent audible inner monologues where he talks to himself in stressful situations.
FOUR ~ Homer Simpson, The Simpsons. Homer Jay Simpson is one of the funniest characters and most well-known in tv history. He is crude, overweight, incompetent, clumsy, thoughtless, and a borderline alcoholic. He is not the prototypical father, husband, employee, or neighbor, but it is extremely entertaining seeing him be in all of those roles. He frequently salivates over the thought of his true passion – food. Dan Castellaneta, the voice of Homer Simpson, describes him as “a dog trapped in a man’s body. He’s incredibly loyal – not entirely clean – but you gotta love him.”
THREE ~ George Costanza, Seinfeld. What an amazing character! He often referred to himself as a “short, stocky, slow-witted, bald man.” I love the fact that he worked for the greatest professional sports organization – the New York Yankees. However, it makes sense that when he got fired, the Yankees shortly rattled off a run of world championships. Known for being a great liar, a slacker, a fake architect, a fake marine biologist, and being the butt of a lot of jokes. His relationship with his parents is hilarious.
TWO ~ Dr. Evil, Austin Powers movies. Dr. Evil is the chief villain and the nemesis of Austin Powers. His character is supposedly a parody of different James Bond evil villains. He had the typical childhood being raised by Belgians. When he was insolent he was placed in a burlap bag and beaten with reeds — pretty standard, really. Turns out that he is the long-lost twin brother of Austin. He has a real son and a clone that is 1/8 his size. He is a good rapper. Dr. Evil is what makes those movies good.
ONE ~ Rocky Balboa, Rocky movies. The most motivating character of all time. The true underdog, rag-to-riches story where a no name boxer comes out of nowhere to be the heavy weight champion of the world. The Italian Stallion is known for training hard, being able to take multiple punches to the face without going down, and never quitting. He is a sensitive guy who is also a romantic. He loves his friends and family deeply and wears his heart on his sleeve. Hey, any fictitious character that has a real statue in a major US city has to be one of the top characters of all-time. Favorite Rocky quote, “Was ya ever punched in the face 500 times a night? It stings after a while, ya know.”
There you go. That’s my list. Who did I miss? Who’s on your list?