The television jerk is a beautiful thing. Residing somewhere between villain and oaf, these characters are often the antidote to lame protagonists and pandering storylines.
Here are five of my favourites:
5. Master Shake, Aqua Teen Hunger Force
Cartoon milkshake Master Shake’s constant antagonism of dullard running buddy Meatwad is his go-to act-out, but pretty much everything he does is ridiculously and brilliantly assholic. Master Shake’s jerkishness is a thing of relentless beauty.
4. E.B. Farnum, Deadwood
Technically, E.B. Farnum’s more sniveling worm than jerk, but most of the characters on Deadwood are jerks so his brand of noxiousness uniquely stands out. Particularly good are his interactions with his assistant Richardson, a simpleton E.B. picks on mercilessly.
3. Malcolm Tucker, The Thick Of It
Watching Malcolm Tucker will a) help you compose brilliantly withering insults, and b) make you want to swear at your co-workers a lot more.
2. Pierce Hawthorne, Community
Bumbling racist Pierce Hawthorne’s best when executing some act of physical comedy — tripping over drumkits, having trampoline accidents — and without him there’d be no Community.
1. Gob Bluth, Arrested Development
Gob Bluth is a perfect human. “Come on!” is one of television’s great catchphrases.