These 14 presidents from works of fiction are each still more realistic a choice than the 2016 election cycle holds for us. Let's take a look at these fictional commanders-in-chief.
For each of our "candidates," I've given you a defining quote and a short summary of why they made us truly believe they could be presidents.
14. President Howard T. Ackerman in "Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3," played by J.K. Simmons.
President Howard T. Ackerman in "Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3," played by J.K. Simmons. (YouTube)
Party: Republican Parody (probably).
Quote: "Yes we can. We can hope. We can dream. But when we wake up, you'll see that the only candidate ready for the future is me. The future is coming, it's coming and it's gonna bring a force of armored Kodiak Bears, attack blimps, and a lot of weaponized robots that'll turn hope into a 4 letter word. If you want hope, keep dreaming. If you want change, put out your cup. If you want freedom, vote for me."
Ackerman is a patriot, but he's also a shameless populist self-aggrandizing war monger. Which essentially makes him an early 21st century neo-conservative. And he's completely insane.... Did I mention that?
Stay tuned because I think a comparison between President Ackerman and Donald Trump is in the works. Let me know in the comments what you think, but I think this needs to happen.
13. President Michael Dugan in "Command & Conquer: Red Alert 2," played by Ray Wise.
President Michael Dugan in "Command & Conquer: Red Alert 2," played by Ray Wise.
Party: Democrat (Very Probably).
Quote: "You can't threaten us! We're the mightiest nation on Earth!... We did win the war, you know."
Dugan is the president who thought propping up a puppet communist regime in the Soviet Union was a good idea and was shocked when they betrayed him... yup, total Democrat.
12. Presidents Russell Kramer, Matt Douglas and William Haney, respectively, in "My Fellow Americans," played by Jack Lemmon, James Garner & Dan Akroyd.
Presidents Russell Kramer, Matt Douglas and William Haney, respectively, in "My Fellow Americans," played by Jack Lemmon, James Garner & Dan Akroyd. (WikimediaCommons: Alan Light, Alan Light, tonyshek-Flickr)
Parties: Republican, Democrat & Republican
Quotes: (Kramer) "Our dreams are like our children." (Douglas) "'Our dreams are like children. They need to be nurtured. They need to be supported.' They need to eat vegetables. Prick." (Haney) "Buy a new speech, Russell."
Admittedly, I was tempted to use "My Fellow Americans" to quickly nab three presidents for my list. But I took the high road! Plus, given that this film did everything it could to not take the presidency seriously, it speaks volumes that they made this list at all. So there you go: buy one get two free.
11. President Jackson Evan in "The Contender," played by Jeff Bridges.
President Jackson Evan in "The Contender," played by Jeff Bridges. (YouTube)
Quote: "Napoleon once said when asked to explain the lack of great statesmen in the world, that 'to get power you need to display absolute pettiness; to exercise power, you need to show true greatness.' Such pettiness and greatness are rarely found in one person..."
Evans is masterful at helping his foes dig the hole they'll fall into with a little prompting and then claiming the apparent moral high ground. Points for skill but not for substance. Evans is a man you have to respect knowing you could land in his crosshairs.
10. President Benjamin Asher in "Olympus Has Fallen" and "London Has Fallen," played by Aaron Eckhart.
President Benjamin Asher in "Olympus has fallen" and "London has fallen," played by Aaron Eckhart. (YouTube)
Party: Likely Republican
Quote: "[Asher head-butts Forbes in the face] Gotta keep your gloves up, Forbes."
Despite that excellent "quote," President Asher has a bad predilection for getting captured and furthering the plot line so that our hero Gerard Butler can save him. So if Agent Banning is Mario, wouldn't that make Asher the... princess? Yeah let's not go there.
9. President Selina Meyer in "Veep," played by Julia Louis-Dreyfus.
President Selina Meyer in "Veep," played by Julia Louis-Dreyfus. (YouTube)
Party: Probable Democrat
Quote: "I'm an Angry Bird right now. And you're a pig."
You have to admire a president who is up to speed on pop culture and can pun with the best of them. Also, America seems to gravitate toward the "straight talkers" these days and if her liberal use of the F-word is any indication, Selina has never swerved once. Saw what I did there?
8. President Tom Beck in "Deep Impact," played by Morgan Freeman.
President Tom Beck in "Deep Impact," played by Morgan Freeman. (YouTube)
Party: A toss-up
Quote: "Cities fall, but they are rebuilt. And heroes die, but they are remembered. We honor them with every brick we lay, with every field we sow, With every child we comfort, and then teach to rejoice in what we have been re-given. Our planet. Our home. So now, let us begin."
Morgan. Freeman. It's that voice, you automatically trust him, don't you? I mean, we're talking about a man who can at least somewhat convincingly portray the Almighty. As far as party affiliation goes, I can't peg it, he shows the masterful manipulation of the press that is all Democrat, but wields Reagan-esque military spending secretly and with ease which is good ol' GOP shtick.
7. President David Palmer in the hit show "24," played by Dennis Haysbert.
President David Palmer in the hit show "24," played by Dennis Haysbert. (YouTube)
Quote: “Listen to me. All of you. I know you’re not in the same room with me but you can see and hear me plainly enough. Take a good look. Do I seem scared? Am I breaking into a nervous sweat? Am I babbling? At a loss for words? Is my voice shaking? Can any one of you look me in the eye and tell me I’m disabled?”
He definitely wasn't disabled, as evidenced by his handling of a mustang Jack Bauer, but now I have a sudden desire to buy Allstate Insurance. (#NotASponsor) Are you in good hands?
6. President Mackenzie Allen in "Commander In Chief," played by Geena Davis.
President Mackenzie Allen in "Commander In Chief," played by Geena Davis. (YouTube)
Party: Independent, former moderate Republican
Quote: "I'm going to go out there, and I'm going to take the oath of office. I'm going to run this government... and if some Islamic nations can't tolerate a female president, then I promise you... it will be more their problem than mine!"
Extra points for being an independent! Even if she was a moderate and got into office by her predecessor having a stroke...ohhhh there it is. Kudos for sticking it to the hardliner Islamists though, so I think President Allen is a winner.
5. President Thomas Wilson in "2012," played by Danny Glover.
President Thomas Wilson in "2012," played by Danny Glover. (YouTube)
Quote: "My fellow Americans. This will be the last time I address you. As you know, catastrophe has struck our nation... has struck the world. I wish I could tell you we can prevent the coming destruction. We cannot. Today, none of us are strangers. Today, we are one family, stepping into the darkness together. We are a nation of many religions, but I believe these words reflect the spirit of all our faiths. The Lord is my shepherd... "
President Thomas Wilson faced the end with more dignity than I think many of us could muster, refusing to flee from his rightful place: with the American people and indeed meeting his fate on his feet at the Capitol. I was escpecially touched that Wilson would address the nation in prayer as no president today would dare to. And for the record, taking the U.S.S. John F. Kennedy to the face is a pretty memorable way to go.
4. President Jed Bartlet from "West Wing," played by Martin Sheen.
President Jed Bartlet from "West Wing," played by Martin Sheen. (YouTube)
Quote: "We're for freedom of speech everywhere. We're for freedom to worship everywhere. We're for freedom to learn... for everybody. And because in our time, you can build a bomb in your country and bring it to my country, what goes on in your country is very much my business. And so we are for freedom from tyranny, everywhere, whether in the guise of political oppression, Toby, or economic slavery, Josh, or religious fanaticism, C.J. That most fundamental idea cannot be met with merely our support. It has to be met with our strength. Diplomatically, economically, materially. And, if Pharaoh still don't free the slaves, then he gets the plagues or my cavalry, whichever gets there first."
Hard to believe Bartlett is a Democrat based on the bible references but, then you hear him talk about the U.S. Constitution and all doubt is gone. Notwithstanding, Sheen's Bartlett is still one of the most beloved fictional presidents of all time.
3. President Andrew Shepard in "The American President," played by Michael Douglas.
President Andrew Shepard in "The American President," played by Michael Douglas. (YouTube)
Quote: "America isn't easy. America is advanced citizenship. You've gotta want it bad, 'cause it's gonna put up a fight. It's gonna say, 'You want free speech? Let's see you acknowledge a man whose words make your blood boil, who's standing center stage and advocating at the top of his lungs that which you would spend a lifetime opposing at the top of yours.' You want to claim this land as the land of the free? Then the symbol of your country cannot just be a flag. The symbol also has to be one of its citizens exercising his right to burn that flag in protest. Now show me that, defend that, celebrate that in your classrooms. Then you can stand up and sing about the land of the free."
Okay, I know what you're thinking: "Matt! He's an ACLU member, gun grabbing, flag burning liberal!" But on a human and emotional level, that was an incredibly convincing speach and the character seems genuine with solid emotional depth. And if we can't agree on freedom of speech and expression we're toast. So, I respect Mr. Shepard. But I'd wreck him on TheBlaze commentary page for his crazy notion of a gun grab.
2. President Whitmore in "Independence Day," played by Bill Pullman.
President Whitmore gives a speech in "Independence Day." Played by Bill Pullman. (YouTube)
Party: Probable Republican
Quote: "We're fighting for our right to live, to exist. And should we win the day, the 4th of July will no longer be known as an American holiday, but as the day when the world declared in one voice: We will not go quietly into the night! We will not vanish without a fight! We're going to live on! We're going to survive! Today, we celebrate our Independence Day!"
Don't worry, those patriotic chills will go away in a few minutes. We need to go a little deeper though: an article from mic.com calls Whitmore "America's Worst (Fictional) President" citing his 40 percent approval rating and verbal evisceration by the talking heads of the McLaughlin Group shown prominently during the exposition phase of the film (which cements his likely party affiliation). So, not the best domestic president perhaps but a brilliant warrior president.
1. President James Marshall in "Air Force One," played by Harrison Ford.
President James Marshall in "Air Force One," played by Harrison Ford. (YouTube)
Party: Republican (Seriously, was that a question?)
Quote: "The dead remember. Real peace is not just the absence of conflict, it's the presence of justice. And tonight I come to you with a pledge to change America's policy. Never again will I allow our political self-interest to deter us from doing what we know to be morally right. Atrocity and terror are not political weapons and to those who would use them: your day is over. We will never negotiate. We will no longer tolerate, and we will no longer be afraid. It's your turn to be afraid."
With hard-line, anti-terrorist rhetoric, taking no prisoners —"Get off my plane!"— and solid American values, Marshall is what we dream of in a modern president. Ford's President Marshall role easily has the chops to guide America out of recession and to a firm victory over radical Islamic extremism.
Matt Holloway is a Millennial Constitutional Conservative blogger and was appointed a Republican Committeeman for Legislative District 13 in 2015 he is also a member of the Arizona Republican Assembly. Email: TheMattHollowayShow@outlook.com.
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