Tuesday, July 23, 2013

How Many Phonies are on TV?

Most sports fans know by now that Johnny Manziel missed the Manning Passing Academy because his "phone died," leading me to compare him to The Hungover Guy from the typical wedding party. Needless to say, nobody believed Johnny Football. In light of his bogus excuse, I immediately thought of Jerry Seinfeld, who frequently uses the word phony. I also realized that TV shows are full of phonies. Here is a list of the phoniest aspects of some of How Blank's favorite shows:

Phoniest Holiday -- Festivus (Seinfeld)
Much to the chagrin of Kavanaugh and many of my other friends, I ranked The Office ahead of Seinfeld. However, Festivus is, by far, the phoniest holiday ever conceived. Frank Costanza pretty much became the modern-day Santa Claus when he designed "the feats of strength."

Phoniest In-Law -- Clay Morrow (Sons of Anarchy)
I'm about to start Season 5 of Sons, but after four seasons it's clear that Clay is a bad in-law. That is, if killing your partner, stealing his family, attempting to kill your new son's fiancée, and beating the pulp out of your wife qualifies as bad.

Clay is a greedy phony in everything he does, and I have a feeling he gets his comeuppance in Season 5.

Clay narrowly edges Adriana La Cerva from The Sopranos in this category because Adriana wasn't technically a family member. Christopher's fiancée became an FBI informant, which Tony wasn't exactly pleased about. Adriana's turncoat ways led to this terrific scene.*

*Well, terrific for viewers, obviously not for Adriana.

Also, I had to mention Adriana because actress Drea de Matteo attended my high school, Loyola. Go Knights!

Phoniest Badass -- Sawyer (Lost)
Sawyer's case represents a rare occasion when "phony" can be seen as a compliment. "The Long Con" episode in Season 2 depicts Sawyer's ability to deceive people from the real world and on the island. It might be my favorite hour of TV ever.

Most of us watch that clip thinking that Sawyer is trying to help. WRONGO!

Phoniest Politician -- Councilman Jamm (Parks and Recreation)
Councilman Jamm is one of the best recurring minor characters on the show, using his political position to defraud voters and achieve personal gains. You know, just like every real-world politician. Jamm's catchphrase is "You just got Jammed" every time he wins an argument.

Of course, Ron Swanson eventually puts Jamm in his place...

Phoniest Co-Worker--Nina Myers (24)
We covered Nina in this space when we discussed the worst whistleblowers in history. Her phoniness put an entire country in danger on multiple occasions. Nina even defrauded the venerable Jack Bauer into dating her during his separation from his wife. Just a bitchy phony through and through.

Phoniest Hot Girls--The Cast of Sex and the City (Sex and the City)
Seriously, look at them:

Phoniest Job--Assistant (to the) Regional Manager (The Office)
Some of Dwight's funniest early scenes came from his desire to be the Assistant Regional Manager, while Michael made it clear that he was merely the Assistant to the Regional Manager. Sort of like the fact that I'm not a blogger as much as someone who attempts to blog.

The assistant regional manager job finished just ahead of Turtle's job in Entourage, because nobody was ever sure that Turtle even had a job.

Phoniest Carpentry Skills--Tim Taylor (Home Improvement)
Blast from the past on this one. Tim the Toolman was probably worse at his job than any television character in history. The dude got electrocuted more often than Marv from Home Alone.

Phoniest Job--Teamsters (The Simpsons)

My buddy is a teamster, and he always (somewhat jokingly) says that teamsters have the most important job in the country. Homer says what the rest of us think about teamsters, saying, "I wish I was a teamster, so lazy and surly."

Phoniest Suicide Attempt--Skyler White (Breaking Bad)
In Season 5 of what I think is the best currently-running show, Skyler wades into the cold pool and just lays there until Walt pulls her out.

Youtube doesn't have a clip of this, but it's probably better that way. This was such a frustrating scene on so many levels. I wish the family had made the collective decision to just let her drown.

Skyler is the worst fictional wife since Adrian from Rocky. Hopefully, Walt will dispose of her in the second half of the final season. It starts August 11, and I can't wait.

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