Sunday, January 26, 2014

How Much Do Women Love Poor Male Characters?

At How Blank, we love writing about the gap between the non-rich and the non-poor. I even described class differences at sporting events. This week, let's talk about the best rich and poor fictional characters.

Today we'll discuss the best poor male characters ever. You'll notice that despite their lack of money, many of these guys outkick their financial coverage and end up with bombshell women. Fictional ladies dig rags.

Top 10 Poor Male Characters

When I create a Top 10, I usually go in descending order, but anyone who read my Boy Meets World post knows who will top this list. Shawn Hunter pulled himself up by the bootstraps from the trailer park all the way to Pennbrook University. Everyone else on this list was just playing for second place.

1. Shawn Hunter (Boy Meets World)
Here's what I wrote in that aforementioned post:
"Loyal best friend. Chick magnet. Hilarious kid. Shawn saved Cory's life at the zoo when they were little kids and their friendship blossomed from there. The guy pretty much had everything. Well, everything except money and a non-trailer home."

2. Jack Dawson (Titanic)
He was the heartthrob for all the girls in my middle school, and with damn good reason. Jack wasn't afraid to drink, swear, knock an m-f'er out, or draw a nude amputee. He was a man's man to the very end, chivalrously allowing that brat Rose to float on the door as he died of hypothermia.

It's interesting that young DiCaprio played skelly characters in movies like The Basketball Diaries and Titanic, but he has portrayed rich guys in his two most recent blockbusters (The Great Gatsby and The Wolf of Wall Street).

3. Noah Calhoun (The Notebook)


Three poor guys, three male smokeshows. It's clear that poverty and man-crushability have a direct correlation. Noah knows how to work with his hands and loves the outdoors, yet he still dabbles in poetry. Like Jack, he's a cool guy with a bitchy -- albeit very hot -- girlfriend.

4. Aladdin (Aladdin)
Sure, his best friends are a monkey and a genie, but the monkey is pretty funny and the genie is Robin Williams. It could have been worse, especially considering Aladdin's financial sitch. He received a huge boost on this list because he got Jasmine, one of Disney's hottest princesses.

5. Bert (Mary Poppins)
Chimney sweeps in turn-of-the-century London were definitely in a rougher situation than the modern-day poor. Bert didn't let that keep him down, though. When we went to see Mary Poppins on Broadway, the man was dancing on the ceiling. ON THE CEILING! Now that is a poor guy I can hang with.

6. The Man with No Name / Clint Eastwood (The Good, the Bad and the Ugly)

Just look at him. Clint is such a badass! The entire Dollars Trilogy is phenomenal, but The Good, the Bad and the Ugly -- in which he's simply known as "Blondie" -- is my favorite. The last scene is pure Clint. I guess he's not poor anymore after he collects half the gold, though.


7. Charlie, Frank, Mac, and Dennis (It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia)
The Gang is a group of pure skells, running a failing bar and constantly hatching flawed schemes that always leave them broke. I guess that "Cricket" is the technically the poorest character on the show and Frank technically has some money, but this spot on the list seems right.

8. Moe Szyslak (The Simpsons)
Moe uses a rope as a belt and bags as shoes, and he once burned down his tavern to collect the insurance money. Still, he's one of the funniest bartenders in television history. And speaking of bartenders...

9. Nick (New Girl)


New Girl is a recent addition to my TV rotation, and Nick is probably the funniest character. He has no bank account or phone, and he once bought history's grimiest Port-A-Potty. Like many of the other characters on this list, Nick could never get a girl like Zooey Deschanel in real life. Fictional poor guys have a way easier time than real-life poor guys like me.

10. Bob Cratchit and Tiny Tim (A Christmas Carol
You couldn't have a list of impoverished male characters without these two. They might not get chicks like the rest of the guys on this list, but they're certainly poor enough.

Omitted because they were based on true stories:
--Michael Oher (The Blind Side)

--Chris Gardner (The Pursuit of Happyness)
--James Braddock (Cinderella Man) 

This post is dedicated to my wife Kerry, who had A LOT to say about this topic.

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