No Such Nonsense

A little of this, that and... what was I talking about again? It's TV, sports, pop culture and politics - all the stuff that really matters in life.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Bad, Bad Bosses

In The Devil Wears Prada, released this weekend, Meryl Streep plays Miranda Priestly, an Anna Wintour-like editor of a Vogue-like publication. She is a cruel, biting and mercilessly sarcastic boss who takes pleasure in humiliating her assistant, played by the dewy Anne Hathaway. Priestly is, from the top of her impeccable snow-white hairstyle to the tip of her pointy Manolos, a personification of the very bad boss. And she's just one in a long line of bad bosses Hollywood has given us. I've had my share of real life bad bosses, but here's my list of the worst bosses on film:

Bill Lumbergh, Office Space (Gary Cole)
Ummm, yeah. Lumbergh is Hollywood's best example of the soulless boss who slowly sucks the will to live right out his employees, with his artful communication style and deep empathy for those around him. Plus, he takes away Milton's red Swingline stapler and really, really gets off on doing it. C'mon now, we all know that stapler wasn't hurting anyone.

Katharine Parker, Working Girl (Sigourney Weaver)
Katharine is coolly efficient, calculating and extremely successful. She tells Tess her ideas are no good, then promptly claims them as her own. A player in the power-hungry world of mergers and acquisitions, she takes great pleasure in cutting Tess down and always keeping her in her place. Male or female, this is boss a real bitch.

David Brent, The Office (Ricky Gervais)
OK, this a TV show and not a movie. And it isn't even from Hollywood, but rather from the brilliant mind of Brit comedian Ricky Gervais. But Brent is another classic example of a bad boss - inept, inappropriate and clueless. Manager of a paper-supply company in industrial Slough, Brent thinks he's a cool, popular and funny boss. He's not. Cringe-inducing, in a good way.

The Emperor, Star Wars films (Ian McDairmid)
You do his every evil bidding and he's ready to replace you as soon as a new, more forceful potential sith shows up. And that's just if you are his second-in-command. Heaven help you if you are a disposable foot soldier. Apparently, he's so cheap, he won't even pay for you to get arms training or target practice. Your chance of being ignobly defeated by a rag-tag handful of rebels is very high indeed.

Dr. Evil, Austin Powers Films (Mike Myers)

I suppose if you have an evil disposition, he might not be so bad. Unfortunately, you might be his favourite one day, only to find yourself on the outs the next. And, with Dr. Evil, on the outs might involve freakin sharks, with freaking laser beams on their heads. Not to mention that his evil plans are always foiled, virtually ensuring that you, the flunky, will have to take the fall.

Any other nominees?


  • At 12:21 p.m., Blogger the2scoops said…

    Kevin Spacy in Swimming With Sharks. Before Ari Gold in Entourage, there was Buddy Ackerman, movie mogul and power hungry sadist. He ate assistants for breakfast.


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