In honor of this “most important election in American history” taking place this Tuesday, November 4th between Barack Obama and John McCain, we at Geeks of Doom decided to compile a little list of some of the completely fictional presidents that have shown up in movies or on TV over the years who you would likely vote for over our current options. Some are completely different than anything we’ve ever seen before in a president, while some share familiar similarities; some come from dramas, some from science fiction, and some from completely ridiculous satire. But one thing’s for sure, they’d all make worthy candidates in one way or another.
No matter which candidate you’re hoping wins this Tuesday, or who you love or hate, we all just hope things don’t go to hell and good things come from whoever wins But until that time comes, please read on and enjoy 11 Fictional Presidents You’d Likely Vote For Over Obama & McCain!
11. Diane Steen, Mafia! (Christina Applegate) — Not looking at the 100% goofiness of the movie, we never really find out what President Steen is all about. But in an election year that has women making a strong showing as potential world leaders, she definitely could offer a valid and valuable option. The secondary fact that she’s married to the biggest name in the mafia and has a son named after her would only add entertainment gold to the 4-8 year run. I have always wondered what a Cabinet consisting entirely of mobsters would look like; we could just have dangerous world dictators whacked and save trillions in military efforts.
10. President Lindberg, The 5th Element (Tom “Tiny” Lister) — Quite simply, this is all about the intimidation factor. If this walking giant muscle were President, other countries might just cower in fear at the thought of being picked up and thrown through walls. This intimidation factor made him a worthy fictional leader. Also, he runs a very futuristic, very high-tech world, so getting things done around here where we still don’t have any damn flying cars should be pretty simple for him. Unfortunately, cliches have taught us that dudes that look like him are not the smartest of folk and so we would have to roll the dice on this one, not that intelligence has ever been the most important quality in a U.S. President (ahem).
9. James Dale, Mars Attacks (Jack Nicholson) — President Dale doesn’t really stand out above and beyond what we’re familiar with. In fact, he’s pretty much just a parody of the typical Presidential figure. But what differentiates him from others is that he did have to deal with a hostile alien invasion which saw a very large number of humans turned into trippy-looking colorful skeletons. Unfortunately, he was also zap-fried in this attack, but I think it gave him the boost he needed to make our list. Considering the complete lack of preparing we could do for an alien attack, he did about as good as anyone could do; aside for maybe one other movie President…
8. Nathan Petrelli, Heroes (Adrian Pasdar) — Probably the least seen fictional President, only showing up in a couple briefly seen futures that are seemingly changed before they ever actually happen, and one isn’t even him! Even if he doesn’t actually ever become President, he is still the resident politician and is perfectly fitting for the job, but that’s not really why the man is on the list. Truth is, the dude can fly! If you can fly and are politically inclined, you’ll probably get my vote, because that’s freakin’ awesome. Campaigning would be cake; he’d cover multiple times the amount of towns and cities without need for planes and other transportation methods — that’s environmentally responsible! And could you imagine foreign policies? Whew!
7. Stewie Griffin, Family Guy — From the 100th episode, Stewie Kills Lois/Lois Kills Stewie where Stewie’s evil dictator finally emerges and takes over the country. Though an evil dictator and far, far too young to legally be leader, President Griffin does have some laws in place for the good of the people including the requirement of all citizens to throw apples at Peter Griffin, the banning of all straight-to-DVD Disney sequels, and the law that Hillary Swank shall now be mother to all… so to speak. You may or may not think little Stewie Griffin would be better than our current options, but man, who could resist seeing how it would go!? Unfortunately, he was assassinated by Peter Griffin but he did kinda deserve it and that’s never stopped a cartoon before.
6. Thomas “Tug” Benson, Hot Shots: Part Deux (Lloyd Bridges) — No, President Tug Benson might not immediately cross your mind as a good option. He may or may not be similar to certain real Presidents and he may or may not be very good at being intelligent and doing things properly and he may just be the clumsiest man ever to live. But aside from these things, you can’t ignore the plain fact that the man gets things that need to be done taken care of in some fashion or another… even if accidental. Also worth considering is, if you cross him and he realizes who you are, he will punch you in the face — and that makes him a good man for the job in my book!
5. Thomas J. Whitmore, Independence Day (Bill Pullman) — Like President Dale in our 9-spot, President Whitmore also had to deal with an alien invasion. Unlike Nicholson’s character though, Whitmore has much better success. Similar to Obama, Bill Pullman’s character is a very young leader and is considered far too inexperienced to be President. Thankfully, he is a veteran fighter pilot and got into a plane to help fight the alien invasion, which gives him serious brownie pointage and a decent spot on our list. Oh, and let us not forget, the man has some serious inspirational blockbuster movie speech skills he can use to win the hearts of the masses.
4. James Marshall, Air Force One; (Harrison Ford) — When your President is on his plane and you find out said plane has been taken over by Russian terrorists who aren’t so happy about some decisions that have been made by the American leader, you’d think that’s a situation that can’t have the best ending. But when your President is President James Marshall — a take-no-shit Vietnam vet — things change a little. Marshall mirrors what some might think John McCain would try and do in a similar situation and kicks as many asses as he can get within range of his foot. I’m a real sucker for a dreamy world leader who isn’t afraid to drop the gloves and knock some teeth out — isn’t everyone?
3. Merkin Muffley, Dr. Strangelove (Peter Sellers) — Give me a worse situation than when one of your absolutely insane military generals sending out a fleet of planes to nuke the hell out of the Russians without your orders, followed by the discovery of a device that will very happily destroy the entire planet and all living creatures on it as a defense mechanism to something like said psychotic general ordering said unnecessary nuke-dropping and I’LL give you a higher spot on my list! President Muffley was placed in this impossible situation while stuck in a room between an equally insane military leader who’s encouraging him to go through with it anyway for strategic reasons, a Russian representative trying to assist in ending the crisis while also dealing with his own drunken president on the phone, and even a Nazi/Dr./expert with… hand troubles. Though President Muffley didn’t jump up and run with one choice to make something happen, you have to respect his ability to sit calmly and try and figure it all out. Knowing most efforts would have been completely futile, he has my respect and a high spot on our little list here.
2. David Palmer, 24 (Dennis Haysbert) — One of multiple fictional first African-American Presidents, President Palmer is always right in the mix of the Counter Terrorist Unit and instead of being dormant, he steps up and makes the really tough decisions that need to be made. This would be a sort of redeeming quality for numerous other presidents who can’t make a decision or rely on multitudes of behind-the-curtain people to make their decisions for them. Things might not have ended so well for Palmer, but as a fictional presidential option, you have to think he would have a really good chance at taking the victory.
1. Josiah Bartlett, The West Wing (Martin Sheen) — This was a pretty easy choice for the top dog of our list of fictional presidents we might like to see as our real-life leader. It helped me personally that though fictional, he was born and raised in my home state of New Hampshire, but that wasn’t the clincher. The character of President Bartlett was pretty much constructed as the perfectly well-rounded leader we all desperately wish would come along and serve for a lifetime. There will always be people who disagree with a certain stance on a certain issue, but Bartlett is molded to be about as undoubtedly likable and qualified as any one candidate could be. He’s intelligent and makes the right decisions, he’s strict and tough and even mean when necessary, and he has a good sense of humor to boot. How could anyone vote against him? You cannot, and so he is officially our number one fictional President you know you’d vote for! Who would get your vote? Would it be someone from the list, a write in, or maybe you like one of the real candidates best? Ponder, discuss and remember…
In any case, all this political madness finally goes away again on Wednesday.