Saturday, May 7, 2016


Many times, a character is added to a film or television series as an attempt to draw in a broader audience or boost flagging ratings.  Many times these characters are so odious and obnoxious that they render the series unwatchable.   Here are  the top 8 characters that single handedly ruined otherwise iconic television and film franchises.

                        8. NERMAL - GARFIELD CARTOON

                               The Garfield  animated series was witty and fun                                until the addition of Nermal, meant to be a cute 
                               kitten that annoyed Garfield.  Unfortunately, 
                               Nermal annoyed the audience more than
                               Garfield, making any episode that Nermal 
                               appears unwatchable.

                          7. BANE - BATMAN DARK KNIGHT RISES

Bane ruined an otherwise great movie series.  The Bane 
character is a lesser known Batman villain and 
was completely hollow as a follow up villain to
Heath Ledger's Joker.  Bane was voiced horribly 
and not very well scripted.  Batman Begins and 
Dark Knight deserved a better end, but instead Bane
renders the final film of the trilogy unwatchable.

                           6. JENNY PICCOLO - HAPPY DAYS

                                               As Happy Days was winding down from it's 
                                hey-day as an iconic look at life in the 1950's
                                the characters were grown up and heading into
                                the turmoil of the 1960's.  Key characters had                                     moved on from the show and Jenny Piccolo 
                                went from being the unseen crazy friend of 
                                Joanie Cunningham, to a recurring character.
                                Happy Days was in it's last gasp when Piccolo 
                                was added to the series, but the character was 
                                scripted and played so obnoxiously that the last
                                few episodes were rendered unwatchable.

                          5. OLIVER - BRADY BUNCH

                              In the last season of the Brady Bunch, ratings 
                              were going down the drain.  The producers 
                              determined that the addition of an obnoxious 
                              cousin from out of town would save the show
                              from cancellation.  Instead, the Brady Bunch 
                              pioneered a strategy that served to tank other 
                              television shows, a tactic fatally repeated by
                              number 6 on the list.  Instead of presenting 
                              little Oliver as an endearing child to warm the
                              hearts of the audience, he was cast as an 
                              annoying trouble maker who rendered the last 
                              last episodes of an otherwise iconic series 

                          4. ROBIN - BATMAN AND ROBIN
                                After Tim Burton left the successful Batman 
                                reboot movie series, Batman Forever 
                                introduced us to a slew of obnoxious
                                characters, but none quite as horrific as the 
                                reinvention of Robin as a sniveling, rebellious
                                teen.  The Robin character was bad in Batman 
                                Forever, but really took annoying and 
                                obnoxious to new heights with Batman And 
                                Robin.  There was pretty good competition
                                for this list in Batman And Robin, but the 
                                Robin character was enough to kill this series 
                                of films.  Joel Shumacher's vision of Robin 
                                has rendered this fourth installment of Batman 

                           3. SCRAPPY DOO - SCOOOBY DOO
                                              In what was apparently an attempt to draw in 
                               younger, less controlled viewers, Scooby Doo 
                              foisted the terminally obnoxious Scrappy Doo
                              on America.  Scrappy Doo excelled in annoying
                              and alienating established viewers.  The failed
                              decision to introduce annoying out of control
                              characters to already successful children's
                              programs is baffling and rarely successful.  In
                              the case of Scooby Doo, the decision was fatal
                              as Scrappy Doo renders all episodes in which he 
                              appears as unwatchable.

                       2.  ELMO - SESAME STREET
                              This is more for parents than kids, but, Elmo,
                              the loud, obnoxious screeching Puppet brought 
                              chaos to Sesame Street.  Sesame Street, once a
                              calm educational program aimed at                                                     disadvantaged children, began pandering to out 
                              of control, attention deficient hellions by adding 
                              a character much like themselves.  Instead of  
                              teaching self control and manners, Elmo presents
                              a character with zero restraint.  Besides being 
                              puppeteer-ed by a convicted child predator, 
                              Elmo's high pitched rants have left Sesame 
                              Street, a once iconic and relevant program 

                        1. JAR JAR BINKS - STAR WARS EPISODE 1
                            Hands down, Jar Jar Binks ruined Star Wars 
                            Episode 1.  Prior to release, George Lucas hailed 
                            this CGI abomination as one of the highlights of 
                            his new film.  No other character is as universally 
                            hated as Jar Jar Binks.  George Lucas was 
                            banned from the set of Star Wars Episode 7 and 
                            one has to wonder if Jar Jar Binks is not the main 
                            reason.  One could imagine the conversation 
                            between J.J. Abrams and Lucas;  Lucas: "hey
                            J.J., how 'bout I come down and consult on the 
                            new film?" Abrams: "No George, but thanks for 
                            the offer."  Lucas: "Why not?"  Abrams: "Jar Jar 
                            Binks, George, Jar Jar Binks."  Lucas: "oh." 
                            Young Anakin did not help this stinker but it is 
                             Jar Jar Binks that makes this iconic prequel 

       compiled and written by Paul Ahnert, Daniel Ahnert and David Ahnert.

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