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(Onion AV Club)   Fourteen television characters who, despite their rampant incompetence, managed to hold their jobs   (avclub.com) divider line 110
    More: Amusing, Dwight Schrute, The Dick Van Dyke Show, Dunder Mifflin, Principal Skinner, The Office, Sideshow Bob  
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9989 clicks; posted to Entertainment » on 30 Sep 2013 at 9:34 AM (42 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-09-30 11:03:45 AM
Captain Wilton Parmenter.
 
2013-09-30 11:07:30 AM
media.screened.com
 
2013-09-30 11:08:14 AM

browneye: Les Nessman and Herb Tarlek of WKRP in Cincinnati


Are you saying keeping the Red Wiggler account isn't good enough?

/hey, you're young and swinging
//but one day, you're gonna buy it
 
2013-09-30 11:19:05 AM
On Will & Grace you had to keep Karen around for the cleavage. Megan Mullally had a nice bit of jiggle jiggle going for her. Without her the hetero male and a portion of the lesbian audience goes away.
 
2013-09-30 11:22:06 AM

roughridersfan: I disagree about Cliff Clavin. I just figured he was done his shift by the time the bar opened.


And, apparently, this guy doesn't know what pulling a Clavin actually refers to.  It's not for his general screw-ups, it's for his specific screw-up on Jeopardy!
 
2013-09-30 11:22:21 AM

Secret Agent X23: Voiceofreason01: 1)Dwight is actually great at his job(we're told almost once an episode that he leads the office in sales) and is very competent (runs a working farm and by the end of the series a successful bed and breakfast in addition to his job at Dunder Mifflin) The problem with Dwight is all the other stuff(as mentioned in the article).

Yeah, my first thought as well. A far better example from that show would be Michael Scott.


On paper, Michael was a great manager.  His department was the only one making a profit (or something like that, it's been a while).  Now, it might be despite his management and not because of it. But to his bosses, he was good at what he did.
 
2013-09-30 11:34:35 AM

WippitGuud: [media.screened.com image 300x400]


I think his "expert" vocabulary saved him from getting fired, lol!

/RIP Reinhold weege
 
2013-09-30 11:37:34 AM

WippitGuud: [media.screened.com image 300x400]


What's wrong with Bull?  Hell, Dan should have been fired a thousand times over for sexual harassment.
 
2013-09-30 11:41:39 AM

browneye: Les Nessman and Herb Tarlek of WKRP in Cincinnati


You mean Les Nessman the winner of the "Buckeye Newshawk Award," the "Silver Sow Award", and the "Copper Cob Award".    He is the fictional equivalent of   Orion Samuelson.
 
2013-09-30 11:42:04 AM

LeroyBourne: WippitGuud: [media.screened.com image 300x400]

What's wrong with Bull?  Hell, Dan should have been fired a thousand times over for sexual harassment.


I was going to suggest Dan, but the list was for incompetence... and Dan has had several people (harry among them) say he is a very effective District Attorney.
 
2013-09-30 11:42:43 AM

cman: 15. Hank Schrader

Rent Party: cman: Rent Party: List fails without...

[bizgovsoc4.files.wordpress.com image 800x600]

They probably ran out of time.

Incompetent? If you call saving a Presidential candidates life or stopping a nuclear bomb going off in a major city as incompetent. then you must consider anything less than Jesus perfect to be incompetent.

Stopping a nuclear bomb?  Dude, under that clown's watch, not one, but two nuclear devices were detonated on US soil, along with a dirty bomb.

Everything that guys was supposed to stop happened outside of season 1.    Nerve gas, bio-terrorism, nuclear bombs.   It all went off because he was the Worst.  Spy.  Ever.

You should play the "What is the dumbest thing this character could do right now?" game with 24.  It is amazing the number of hits you'll get.

You are indeed right. He didn't stop everything, but he stopped a lot


He didn't stop crap.   In the process of not stopping crap, he managed to

1) Shoot his boss in the head
2) Get CTU blown up by red-necks
3) Expose himself to a bio-weapon.
4) Get a head of state kidnapped and killed

And that's just off the top of my head.

That show can only be watched as performance art.  It was that bad.
 
2013-09-30 11:44:00 AM

mjohnson71: cman: Rent Party: List fails without...

[bizgovsoc4.files.wordpress.com image 800x600]

They probably ran out of time.

Incompetent? If you call saving a Presidential candidates life or stopping a nuclear bomb going off in a major city as incompetent. then you must consider anything less than Jesus perfect to be incompetent.

The city of Valencia (Season 6) would like a word with you.


And just to be perfectly clear, that was the *second* nuclear detonation on US soil, and the *third* radiological attack.
 
2013-09-30 11:45:28 AM
i3.photobucket.com
 
2013-09-30 11:55:33 AM
Whoever let Michael do billions in property damage (to say nothing of the paternity suit liability) in the Knight Industries Two Thousand.
 
2013-09-30 11:56:21 AM

Voiceofreason01: 1)Dwight is actually great at his job(we're told almost once an episode that he leads the office in sales) and is very competent (runs a working farm and by the end of the series a successful bed and breakfast in addition to his job at Dunder Mifflin) The problem with Dwight is all the other stuff(as mentioned in the article).
2)Wiggin is less competent than Homer?
3)that's the joke
4)In his world Frazier is an extremely popular radio personality. I guess haters gonna hate.
5)that's the joke
6)Tool Time is popular because of Tim Taylor's bumbling.(Also true of Home Improvement and Tim Allen)
7)what kind of incompetent "journalist" uses a second page on a web based article?(fark you second page)---article sucks


Yeah, the point of most of these shows has something to do with how bad the character is at their job. I guess Cracked changed the look of their website.
 
2013-09-30 12:00:46 PM

bearded clamorer: Al Bundy


list fails without him.  actively worked against his employer's interest and everything.
 
2013-09-30 12:08:15 PM

Honest Bender: Secret Agent X23: Voiceofreason01: 1)Dwight is actually great at his job(we're told almost once an episode that he leads the office in sales) and is very competent (runs a working farm and by the end of the series a successful bed and breakfast in addition to his job at Dunder Mifflin) The problem with Dwight is all the other stuff(as mentioned in the article).

Yeah, my first thought as well. A far better example from that show would be Michael Scott.

On paper, Michael was a great manager.  His department was the only one making a profit (or something like that, it's been a while).  Now, it might be despite his management and not because of it. But to his bosses, he was good at what he did.


I'd have to think in spite of it.

But regardless of profits, I'm sure he had to rack up enough violations of various laws and regulations and very likely company policies in the way he dealt with HR and personnel issues that there'd be no question about getting rid of him after, say, the end of his first week, at the outside.
 
2013-09-30 12:12:39 PM

Leader O'Cola: bearded clamorer: Al Bundy

list fails without him.  actively worked against his employer's interest and everything.


I mean the guy only wanted to sell shoes that were hidden in the wall and then pocketed the money for himself and Griff.  Had the shop protested on numerous occasions, the entire city knew how much of an ass he was, told the owner off a number of times and still collected a paycheck (which was a laughable amount anyway, I would assume he worked on commision).
 
2013-09-30 12:20:19 PM

Secret Agent X23: Honest Bender: Secret Agent X23: Voiceofreason01: 1)Dwight is actually great at his job(we're told almost once an episode that he leads the office in sales) and is very competent (runs a working farm and by the end of the series a successful bed and breakfast in addition to his job at Dunder Mifflin) The problem with Dwight is all the other stuff(as mentioned in the article).

Yeah, my first thought as well. A far better example from that show would be Michael Scott.

On paper, Michael was a great manager.  His department was the only one making a profit (or something like that, it's been a while).  Now, it might be despite his management and not because of it. But to his bosses, he was good at what he did.

I'd have to think in spite of it.

But regardless of profits, I'm sure he had to rack up enough violations of various laws and regulations and very likely company policies in the way he dealt with HR and personnel issues that there'd be no question about getting rid of him after, say, the end of his first week, at the outside.


that was my thoughts too. Ignoring that a Michael-like boss in real life would probably not be able to maintain his branch's quality for very long (a reality that would admittedly defeat the point of the show), he seemed to be in trouble with HR almost from the show's getgo.
 
2013-09-30 12:27:42 PM

browneye: Ted Baxter of the Mary Tyler Moore show.


And wasn't he the only one to keep his job at the end?
 
2013-09-30 12:45:24 PM

NeverDrunk23: browneye: Ted Baxter of the Mary Tyler Moore show.

And wasn't he the only one to keep his job at the end?


Yes. I think fictional characters being bad at their jobs yet inexplicably keeping them has been a thing since forever.
 
2013-09-30 12:45:50 PM

IlGreven: roughridersfan: I disagree about Cliff Clavin. I just figured he was done his shift by the time the bar opened.

And, apparently, this guy doesn't know what pulling a Clavin actually refers to.  It's not for his general screw-ups, it's for his specific screw-up on Jeopardy!


I know about the Jeopardy! thing, but how is that relevant to his job as a postal worker?

He did have that one fling with a woman that almost cost him job, though.
 
2013-09-30 12:48:49 PM

IlGreven: roughridersfan: I disagree about Cliff Clavin. I just figured he was done his shift by the time the bar opened.

And, apparently, this guy doesn't know what pulling a Clavin actually refers to.  It's not for his general screw-ups, it's for his specific screw-up on Jeopardy!


And every now and then, Trebek will mention it during Final Jeopardy

/Who are three people who've never been in my kitchen?
//technically, he was right
 
2013-09-30 12:58:43 PM

secularsage: BeatrixK: The point could kinda be made to add Breaking Bad's Hank to that list:  Your brother-in-law is the meth Kingpin you've been searching for, and you only realize it after a year or so while taking a dump reading Walt Whitman?

Hank alternates between being TOO good at his job to the biggest buffoon of a DEA agent there is. One of the things that always drove me crazy about his character was how he could be a typical dumb jock one minute and then say or do something smarter than anyone in the room a few minutes later.

Granted, the character was written to be that sort of bulldog who never lets go, so I don't fault the writers too much. But there are times in the show (especially seasons 1 and 2) where Hank is really, terribly, AWFULLY bad at his job.


I think Hanks big thing was he was so focused on Gus he didn't think about Walt
 
2013-09-30 01:10:23 PM

bearded clamorer: Al Bundy


the first 2 characters to come to my mind were al and homer. neither were on the list. list sucks.
 
2013-09-30 01:12:07 PM
The Reno Sheriff dept in Reno 911
 
2013-09-30 01:13:28 PM
Clavin is on the list for many things including drinking on the job and mishandling mail. I remember one opening-gag wherein Cliff had stopped in for few during his round and allowed the others to read the magazines from his satchel.
 
2013-09-30 01:17:46 PM

Eddie Adams from Torrance: [www.wbez.org image 368x512]

Oh... fictional characters. Nevermind.


How about a thread of incompetent FARK posters who have to threadshiat with their petty politics?
 
2013-09-30 01:25:41 PM
Was anyone else surprised to see Phoebe's porn-star twin-sister as a waitress in another show?  Even used the same name.  I didn't watch the show, but if they showed the character's progression, maybe Mad About You was more interesting than I guessed.
 
2013-09-30 01:56:01 PM
Cheryl's still working for ISIS because Mallory is still trying to figure out a way to get her hands on her money.
 
2013-09-30 02:22:16 PM
FTFA:
viscously dismembered a Rescue Anne doll

csb

One time a tech in my lab was throwing a party. She sent invites via email giving directions, etc., and warning people to beware of her viscous cats.

/csb
 
2013-09-30 02:54:24 PM
14. Ursula Buffay, Mad About You
Given the high turnover rate in the waitressing industry, it's already a bit surprising that Ursula Buffay stayed employed at Riff's-Paul and Jamie Buchman's regular watering hole-for the better part of seven seasons of Mad About You. But it was her unceasing rudeness and general incompetence that makes that accomplishment truly staggering. With a long-standing history of either getting orders wrong or forgetting them altogether, Ursula's immunity to termination can only be explained by her total lack of interest in gratuity. That, along with a general obliviousness to her own incompetence, was epitomized by her concerted effort to win Employee Of The Month. (Her slogan: "Ursula, Ursula, she's our man! If she's not Employee Of The Month, nobody can!")


wait! Isn't that pheobe's sister from Friends? I never really watched either show but I didn't realize there was cross over.
 
2013-09-30 02:54:40 PM
Am I the only one who thought the headline said "rampant incontinence?"

lerablog.org
 
2013-09-30 03:01:36 PM
I wonder how much Dexter was paying the nanny.

He should have been fired from his dad job
 
2013-09-30 03:03:01 PM

Cheron: Gilligan.  Not only did is complete incompetence ship wreck the boat he was a sailor on but his incompetence foiled dozens of rescue plans


Excuse me, but what incompetence is Gilligan guilty of that got them shipwrecked?

It not for his courgage the Minnow would be lost.
 
2013-09-30 03:05:18 PM

Danger Mouse: It not for his courgage the Minnow would be lost.


the Minnow would be lost
 
2013-09-30 03:11:03 PM
Col Klink and Shultz should have been shot, but then again Hogan needed them around, so it was due to Hogans efforts they weren't "Fired".
 
2013-09-30 03:24:01 PM
Benson from Soap
Florence from the Jeffersons.
 
2013-09-30 03:30:27 PM
www.greenwichlibrary.org

/that's the joke though too
 
2013-09-30 03:32:08 PM
All the characters on the IT Crowd. Funny, sure but ridiculous. Did you try turning it off and back on again?
 
2013-09-30 03:32:37 PM
No Frank Burns?

Not only was he too incompetent to be a surgeon, when he went off his rocker and should have been handed a section 8 or a court martial, he was promoted and put in charge of a whole farking hospital.
 
2013-09-30 03:42:05 PM
Dirtybird971:

wait! Isn't that pheobe's sister from Friends? I never really watched either show but I didn't realize there was cross over.


Yes, and Kramer lived across the hall from Paul's apartment he had when he was single.
 
2013-09-30 03:57:15 PM

wildbill0712

Dirtybird971:

wait! Isn't that pheobe's sister from Friends? I never really watched either show but I didn't realize there was cross over.


Yes, and Kramer lived across the hall from Paul's apartment he had when he was single.


didn't Kramer love across the hall from jerry s? Would that make Jerry's apt Paul's old apt?
 
2013-09-30 04:13:03 PM

Dirtybird971: wildbill0712

Dirtybird971:

wait! Isn't that pheobe's sister from Friends? I never really watched either show but I didn't realize there was cross over.


Yes, and Kramer lived across the hall from Paul's apartment he had when he was single.

didn't Kramer love across the hall from jerry s? Would that make Jerry's apt Paul's old apt?


Yep, she made Paul move out to prove he was serious about the relationship, because as long as he still had it he could easily leave anytime he wanted.
Throw in Hank, the dog walker/husband and MAY had a lot of tie ins to multiple shows.
 
2013-09-30 04:15:44 PM

Danger Mouse: Cheron: Gilligan.  Not only did is complete incompetence ship wreck the boat he was a sailor on but his incompetence foiled dozens of rescue plans

Excuse me, but what incompetence is Gilligan guilty of that got them shipwrecked?

It not for his courgage the Minnow would be lost.


The first shipwreck wasn't his fault, but the second one was.  He took the magnet out of the compass whilst cleaning it, if I recall.
 
2013-09-30 04:24:52 PM
The whole point of The Simpsons is that everyone in a position of authority is an incompetent jackass.

In fact, most of these shows wouldn't exist if not for the incompetence of their characters - or they at least wouldn't have lasted past a first season. List is stupid.
 
2013-09-30 04:47:08 PM
www.oocities.org
 
2013-09-30 04:51:15 PM
wildbill0712

Smartest
Funniest
2013-09-30 04:13:03 PM
Dirtybird971: wildbill0712

Dirtybird971:

wait! Isn't that pheobe's sister from Friends? I never really watched either show but I didn't realize there was cross over.


Yes, and Kramer lived across the hall from Paul's apartment he had when he was single.

didn't Kramer love across the hall from jerry s? Would that make Jerry's apt Paul's old apt?

Yep, she made Paul move out to prove he was serious about the relationship, because as long as he still had it he could easily leave anytime he wanted.
Throw in Hank, the dog walker/husband and MAY had a lot of tie ins to multiple shows.


Hank Azaria is worse than that Kevin Bacon are far as that goes.
 
2013-09-30 04:52:19 PM

jbc: How many times must security be breached on the Enterprise before Worf gets fired?


Worf is just there so the rest of the command staff can ignore his advice and belittle him
 
2013-09-30 05:50:06 PM

Snapper Carr: jbc: How many times must security be breached on the Enterprise before Worf gets fired?

Worf is just there so the rest of the command staff can ignore his advice and belittle him


Of course about 90% of the time he is right to be cautious as they are walking into a trap again, when he isn't just being excessively beliigerent anyway.
 
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