Happy Father’s Day! The Top Ten Worst Fictional Fathers:
10. George Gulden: One True Thing
Ellen Gulden has a high-pressured job writing for New York magazine, and when her mother is diagnosed with cancer, her father pressures her to come home to care for her. A college professor and one-time novelist, George has largely been absent from Ellen’s life and she comes to see that though she idolized him, he is selfish and self-centered and appears to have no compassion for his ailing wife.
9. Mr. Wormwood: Matilda
While most fathers on this list are downright evil, Matilda’s father is here because he is not able to see his daughter for the genius she is and routinely belittles her aspirations and dreams. He is also a criminal, who enjoys nothing more than scamming people with junkyard cars. While Matilda is very bright and loves to read, her father tells her, ” I’m smart, you’re dumb, I’m big, you’re little. Deal with it.” Eventually the forces of karma move swiftly and he gets what he deserves.
8. Lucius Malfoy: Happy Potter World
Lucius Malfoy is a pure-blood supremacist and detests anyone he believes to be beneath his social and magical standing. He imparts his elitist views to his son, Draco, who grows up to be a bully with a sense of superior entitlement. Luckily, Draco’s is one of many lives that Harry saves.
7. King Lear: King Lear
Not encouraging animosity between your children is one thing parents are supposed to do, but King Lear missed that memo. He succumbs to the insincere flattery of his two older daughters and divides his kingdom between them while his youngest daughter who truly loves and respects him, Cordelia, is banished. When King Lear finally realized his grave mistakes it’s too late.
6. Franklin Khatchadurian: We Need To Talk About Kevin
While some of the fathers on this list believe their children could do no right, Franklin believes his son Kevin, can do no wrong. Kevin is emotionally detached and brutal in his treatment of others and so cunning in concealing his true nature that his sociopathy goes long undetected until he is finally revealed as a high-school rampage killer. Franklin is so manipulated by his son that he refuses to see the truth and has not the intention nor the courage to confront it.
5. Walter White: Breaking Bad
Walter didn’t start out bad. Diagnosed with terminal lung cancer in the first episode, Walter White is a high-school chemistry teacher with one special needs child and a new baby on the way. Out of love for them and a desire to provide, he partners with a former student and uses his expert knowledge to eventually become the leading creator of drugs in the American southwest. Ruthless against those who oppose him and addicted to power, he continually puts the lives of his family at risk, eventually alienating those for whom he loves and cares.
4. Michael Henchard: The Mayor of Casterbridge
An alcoholic and chronic gambler, he sells his wife and baby daughter for five pounds at a fair. When he is reunited with his now older daughter he treats her horribly. Like all bad dads, when he is sorry it’s way too late.
3. Jack Torrance: The Shining
A recovering alcoholic fired from his last teaching job and a struggling novelist, Jack takes a job as a caretaker for a haunted hotel in a secluded remote area of the mountains. During winter. With a history of bad behavior and violence, maybe not the brightest idea, but he moves his wife and young son, Danny, to the isolated hotel and they all hope for the best. Danny “shines” though and is sensitive to the malevolent forces that seem present in the hotel and his father. Who could forget how terrifying the word,”redrum” scratched on the mirror looked and the chase through the hedge maze in the snow? The book is terrifying and Jack Nicholson is awesome in the movie.
2. Darth Vader: The Star Wars world
Maybe the worst father in any alternate universe? Not counting all the evil things he did before finding his son, the way he told Luke that he was his father and then cruelly cuts off his hand when his son refuses to turn his back on the Jedis, is particularly heartless. When he finds out he also has a daughter, he destroys her planet just to show who’s boss. But then again, nobody from the dark side is a good guy. Or dad.
1. Everybody on Game of Thrones
From Tywin Lannister, who blames his youngest son Tyrion, for his mother’s death in childbirth and holds it against him his whole life, so much so that he has Tyrion framed for murder and then beds the love of his life. ( But sometimes the forces of karma move quickly in GOT as in real life) to Roose Bolton, who turns a blind eye to his son Ramsey who has become the worst kind of sadist. North of the Wall is Craster, who marries his own daughters and abandons his infant sons to die in the frozen woods. And Stannis Baratheon, who has his only daughter burned alive in a blood magic ritual that he believes would bring is ever thirsty self the power he greatly covets.