Last week's April Fool's "prank" by my co-worker, Ivan got me pretty fired up. So much so that my boss, Edward, sent me home early that day (with pay) to cool off. Sometimes, Ivan is just the worst.
I'm learning how to channel my feelings into my creative endeavors, so as soon as I got home, I began thinking about the worst sidekicks in the history of fandom for this week's blog post. I found it fitting because let's face it, when it comes to working at Next Page Comics, I'm pretty much Xena and Ivan is Gabrielle. Actually, that's unfair to Gabrielle, Ivan is like a rock that Xena laces up her boots on. Alright, let's dive in.
10) George 'Mac' McHale from: Indiana Jones and The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
There are probably a few characters far more useless or annoying from the Indiana Jones universe that could go here, but few mention 'Mac,' probably because they want to forget that the movie he's in ever happened. You'd think that Indy running around with his son and former lover Marian, would be enough sidekicks to satisfy the audience, but apparently we absolutely had to have Mac thrown into the mix, even after he straight up betrays Indy in the beginning of the film. Afterwards, he acts as if nothing happened between the two of them, and continues to be a completely unhelpful liar. His character is about as baffling as The Crystal Skull movie itself.
9) Ruby Rhod from: The Fifth Element
Chris Tucker is a genius. Why? Because he managed to somehow take every pop star and celebrity from past, present, and quite possibly the future (paging, Nicki Minja) and compress them together to make the terrible masterpiece that is Ruby Rhod. He's full of himself, doesn't know how to fire a gun, and literally screams like a girl. A lot. He's farther down on the list because after re-watching the film I can't help but be impressed by the performance of such a magnificently annoying character. It's beautiful, really.
8) Magikarp from: Pokemon
Victreebell may affectionately munch on James's head whenever it's released and Psyduck may sit around with a derpy face whenever Misty wants him to fight, but they have nothing on the uselessness that is Magikarp. Not only does it not have any attacks, but it can barely swim! It's a fish Pokemon! How can it not be a strong swimmer?!?! It evolves into the far more useful and frightening Gyarados but the wait for that to happen is barely worth it.
7) Snarf from: Thundercats
Where to begin? Snarf is fat, and lazy, lending very little to the rest of the Thundercats except by being pessimistic, and afraid of everything. And let's not forget his voice, good Lord. Whomever voiced that thing needs to win an award for creating the most ball grating sound in all of cartoon history! By the way, his name is apparently Osbert. That's like if you all knew my name was Phoebe but insisted on calling me 'Human' and my catch phrase was 'Human! Human!' Even in the world of 80s cartoons that makes no sense.
6) Flounder from: The Little Mermaid
I don't like The Little Mermaid. There. I said it. I could talk about how much of a brat Ariel is, but that has nothing to do with sidekicks. Disney usually has an animal sidekick to appeal to younger audiences with a cute factor or for comic relief. Flounder isn't particularly cute OR funny and brings literally nothing to the story except to listen to Ariels' whining with rapt attention and comfort her when she doesn't get her way.
5) Rob Schneider (or Fergee) from: Judge Dredd
Judge Dredd is by no means a masterpiece of filmmaking. Some may find it to be a guilty pleasure but no one can be of sound mind and say that it is a good film. So it's quite remarkable that a simple side character manages to be the absolute worst part of it. Fergee has zero bearing on the plot and his attempt at comic relief is about as funny as a kick in the nuts. It actually made me mad when they decided to show us that he was okay at the end of the film. Dammit, movie! Why must you squash what little hope I had left?!
4) Slippy Toad from: The Starfox Games
Yes, having a mechanic and inventor is an essential part in any game where you fly around in spaceships, but how hard is it to become an even halfway decent pilot? Seriously. He always manages to get cornered by the enemy and needs to be saved time and time again. Then he has to call for help in what has to be the one of the most annoying voices of video game history. Many kids, no matter how gentle or kindhearted, secretly wanted to let Slippy die at enemy hands. This one included.
3) Yorda from: Ico
Escort missions in video games are not fun. I'd even hazard a guess and say that no gamer in history has come across one and thought “Oh Good! I've been waiting for this!” If you're lucky, the person you're escorting can help you in some way by fighting with you, healing you, or being sensible enough to hide away, but that only happens once in a blue moon. Now imagine your entire game as essentially being one big escort mission. That's Ico. You literally spend the game leading a mute and defenseless woman BY THE HAND across puzzles and obstacles where she lends absolutely no help whatsoever. Yorda may as well be a sack of flour that Ico has to carry around.
2) Jar Jar Binks from: The Star Wars Trilogy
Do I even have to explain this? You know the drill here. He's annoying, offensive, not funny, loud, obnoxious, and did I mention he's responsible for Emperor Palpatine gaining control of the galaxy? When you're a sidekick and you do the exact opposite of what a sidekick is supposed to do, you're the epitome of useless!
1) Wilson from: Castaway
He's a ball. A ball with a face. Don't you start telling me that he helped Tom Hanks keep his sanity on that island! No one who argues with a volleyball is sane! Wilson was clearly only a way for the audience to know what Tom Hanks was thinking so we wouldn't have 45 minutes of silence. Plus, he can't even hold on to a raft. Useless.
So that about wraps it up. I can honestly say that Ivan encompasses many of the qualities of the sidekicks I've presented. He's lazy, annoying, always needs help, and offensive to pretty much everyone. Stop by sometime to see for yourself.
Who are some of the worst sidekicks in your opinion? Which characters did I forget? Leave a comment below.