There is a phenomenon that happens with long-running series wherein the main character changes into something entirely different then when the series began.  When that turns out to be something terrible, it’s called ‘Flanderization‘, after Ned Flanders on The Simpsons.  Perhaps the worst protagonist example (for me personally, anyway) is Dr. John Dorian on ‘Scrubs,’ who went from relatively normal guy to completely ineffectual, spineless moron in the space of five seasons, leading us to today’s titular query…

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) would also like to name check ‘How I Met Your Mother’s Ted Evelyn Mosby, even though I sort of love the guy, for reasons which should be obvious, asking: Who is the WORST protagonist in all fiction?

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Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture! And a nice red uniform.

1 Comment

  1. Well, unless we’re excluding shows with villain protagonists, I might give it to Frank Underwood from House of Cards.

    If we are discounting those types of protagonists, I think I might go with Ray Barone from Everybody Loves Raymond or Beavis and Butt-Head.

    Or Kara Danvers from the first few seasons of Supergirl. She’s gotten better but she was a little overly self-righteous at first.

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