The 10 Worst Fathers in Science Fiction and Fantasy
by Susana Polo and Zoe Chevat | 6:39 am, June 19th, 2011
Allow Us to Explain
Last year for Mother’s Day and Father’s day we did lists of the best parents science fiction and fantasy had to offer. And while they went over well, we got some requests from certain people very close to us to do a grid of the absolute worst examples of parenting we could think of, so that they might not feel quite so inferior in comparison. So we did it for the Moms, and now we’re doing it for the Dads.
And what dads! The abusive, distant, or absent father is an incredibly common trope throughout not just genre fiction, but all fiction. We really, really like playing around with the bad dad as a concept. But we found while putting this list together that being an absentee or simply emotionally unavailable father wasn’t enough to make the cut (See Buffy’s Dad, or Dr. Henry Jones, Sr.). Neither was being generally evil, so long as you weren’t any more diabolical to your offspring as you were to everyone else (see Darkseid). Most fathers on this grid have singled out their own children for extra special emotional abuse, neglect, or manipulation far above and beyond their treatment of the other people around them.
In fact, the rest of these dads make the first worst father in science fiction you’re likely to mention (and the very first example on the list) look almost saintly in comparison.
Like usual, this grid is dedicated to the runners up: those mentioned above, David Cain, Professor Membrane, Kronos and Odin.