When I need love, affection, and a boost of self-esteem, I go to my mom. When I need candor, career counseling, and unconventional cooking advice (How do you brown rice? Add Coke!), I go to my dad. Dads (mine in particular) tend to have a more eccentric approach to parenting. From my own peculiar papa to Homer Simpson and his beer-guzzling ways, Dad is the one man who’ll always stand by our side. Here’s a salute to the silver-screen papas who’ve kept us watching and laughing and taught us just how far a father will go to prove his love.
Father Knows Best: Four Heroic Dads Who Risked It All
Daddy Dearest: Terrible but Lovable Onscreen Fathers
TV’s Ten Most Empowering Women
George Banks (Steve Martin), Father of the Bride
Everyone felt the unadulterated heartbreak George Banks felt when his beloved little girl came home with a fiancé on her arm. From getting thrown in jail for vandalizing hot dog buns at the grocery store to falling in the pool at the new rich in-laws’ house, his emotions made him act, well, completely insane. George Banks proves that there’s no love as strong (or as wacky) as a father’s.
_Quotable Quote_: I took Bryan out for a drink. Thought we could have a talk, man-to-man. But as I sat there and listened to his side of the story … I realized this was a golden opportunity. If I ever wanted to get rid of Bryan MacKenzie, this was my chance.
Of all the unhip yet loveable pop culture fathers, the one we adore most is Dr. Heathcliff Huxtable. With his tacky sweaters and ridiculous imitations, he never ceased to embarrass his flock. Whether it was doing the twist in front of Vanessa’s boyfriend or slamming down the phone on Theo’s new crush, he made sure his kids knew who ran the show (and just how much he loved them).
_Quotable Quote_: I brought you in this world and I’ll take you out!
_Photo courtesy of "Wikimedia Commons":http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:BillCosby.jpg_
Homer Simpson is proof that being a good father doesn’t require a massive amount of brainpower. He’s a belching, overeating, intellectually incapacitated moron of a man. With television and alcohol being his greatest teachers in life, he’s perpetually bursting with inane nuggets of wisdom. Despite his lack of common sense, his heart is always where it belongs—with his family.
_Quotable Quote_: Kids, you tried your best and you failed miserably. The lesson is, never try.
_Photo courtesy of "diemer":http://www.flickr.com/photos/diemer/2195379725/ at flickr (cc)_
Whether he’s spying on his daughter and her boyfriend or allowing his best buddy to use his son to score a date, George Lopez is always full of candor and surprises. His attempts to bridge his Mexican roots with the lives of his American children is often awkward, usually inappropriate, but always heartfelt.
_Quotable Quote_: From now on, we’re homeschooling you. Whatever we don’t know, you don’t know. When did the Korean War start? I don’t know, and neither do you!
_Photo courtesy of "Wikimedia Commons":http://bit.ly/l2E5PH_
At some point or another, every family member has wanted to trade in their dysfunctional clan to become a member of the Bradys. Their fearless leader, Mike, was a successful architect, a devoted husband, and an all-around eerily perfect paternal figure. From his hairdo to his high moral code, Mike Brady was practically perfect (and totally groovy) in every way.
_Quotable Quote_: Cindy, you know by tattling on your friends, you’re really just tattling on yourself. By tattling on your friends, you’re just telling them that you’re a tattletale. Now is that the tale you want to tell?
_Photo courtesy of "Wikimedia Commons":http://bit.ly/j4WeS9_
Having Phil as a father would be like having a preschooler direct traffic—it’s pretty much a mess. Whether he’s getting locked in a port-a-potty or donning special goggles before chopping onions, he’s got a level of quirkiness that’s a bit quirkier than most. Phil is awkward, a tad slow, and pretty socially inept. All that said, it’s impossible not to relate to and adore him.
_Quotable Quote_: I’m a cool dad, that’s my thang. I’m hip, I surf the web, I text. LOL: laugh out loud, OMG: oh my god, WTF: why the face?
Guido Orefice is a rare breed of awesomeness. When he and his son are taken to a concentration camp, he turned the entire experience into a game. Even as Nazi soldiers were escorting him to his final resting place, Guido ensured that his son was mentally and physically protected. Goofy, eccentric, and unconditionally devoted, Guido proves that a father’s love knows no end.
_Quotable Quote_: You can lose all your points for any one of three things. One: If you cry. Two: If you ask to see your mother. Three: If you’re hungry and ask for a snack! Forget it!
When we first met Captain Von Trapp, he was more cold disciplinarian than cuddly dad. One hot nanny (Miss Julie Andrews herself) and a few emo ballads later, he’s transformed into a loveable, huggable, and dedicated family man. He forfeited his high-flying army career, swoon-worthy mansion, and entire life to ensure his brood stayed safe and stayed together.
_Quotable Quote_: You brought music back into the house. I had forgotten.
Photo courtesy of "Wikimedia Commons":http://bit.ly/k8GdQk
Even though Chris Gardner was broke, homeless, and abandoned by his wife, he never left his son’s side. He turned nights sleeping in subway bathrooms into dinosaur hunting adventures and sacrificed sleep, food, and shelter to secure a better future. Try watching his journey without going through an entire box of Kleenex … we dare you.
_Quotable Quote_: I met my father for the first time when I was twenty-eight years old. I made up my mind that when I had children, my children were going to know who their father was.
As a widower with three kids, a live-in brother-in-law and an old college buddy as a roommate, life wasn’t always peachy for Danny Tanner. From sewing ballet costumes to chatting about feminine circumstances, no situation was too tough for Daddy Tanner. He led his eclectic herd with strength, love, humor, and an always squeaky-clean bathroom.
_Quotable Quote_: (Puts on a record and starts dancing) This is Danny Tanner reminding YOU that disco will never die!