This week’s top 5 is for the unsung heros of television, the characters who may not get the credit they deserve for being the glue that holds together the story and plot which enhances the TV show: Minor TV show characters.
Billy the Adult
5. Sideshow Bob – The Simpsons
The TV sidekick turned criminal mastermind, Sideshow Bob is the insufferable high cultured villain that we all pity. He is the modern Wile E Coyote to Bart’s Roadrunner whose legacy will always be the far reaching struggle to capture and kill Bart.
4. Leo – That 70’s Show
Leo, the loveable stoner that made the later seasons of That 70’s Show bearable after Ashton Kutcher and Topher Grace left. You might not know this but the reason why Leo was left out of seasons 5 and 6, was because the actor who played him, Tommy Chong, was serving time in jail after being arrested for selling bongs on the internet. During his stay in jail, he encouraged his cellmate Jordan Belfort to write his memoirs which would later be the inspiration behind the hit movie “The Wolf of Wall Street”. Small world.
3. Consuela – Family Guy
Try saying lemon pledge without saying it in Consuela’s voice, it’s impossible not to. Everyone who has had a cleaning lady, or man (it’s 2017), can appreciate the caricature of Consuela the cleaning lady: she’ll vacuum around you when you’re watching tv, unorganize all your things around in your room, and like in the gif above, not give a fuck about cleaning the bathroom while you’re in the bathroom.
2. Artemis – Always Sunny in Philadelphia
The baddest bitch in South Philly, Artemis is arguably the most electric personality in all of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia and for a good reason. Whether it’s leading a conversation with “I have a bleached asshole”, crafting a fake crime story of who pooped the bed, or having sex with Frank in the dumpster behind a Wendy’s. Artemis always improves an episode by just being a part of it.
1. Ray – Trailer Park Boys
I couldn’t lie to the man in the chair, Ray comes in as my #1 best minor character in television. There is a lot more I’d like to know about Ray, the show doesn’t really go too in depth about his life other than the fact that he was a truck driver/assistant trailer park supervisor, is an alcoholic that conned the Canadian government for disability checks. But that’s just the way she goes.
5. Laverne Roberts – Scrubs
Although appearing often, Laverne was the right amount of sass successful for a support character. Her quipy-ness paired with her lack of dealing with other people’s BS is great. Plus she totally dunked on JD in an act of greatness.
4. Margo Martindale – BoJack Horseman
Character actress Margo Martindale is a loose cannon firecracker that is ready for anything and just loves to act. In some instances she is important to moving the plot, but she also acts on her own and does wild card stuff that makes you want more Margo
3. Soup Nazi – Seinfeld
Although it was only one episode, the Soup Nazi played such a role in the ‘show about nothing’ that he penetrated popular culture with his signature catchphrase. More than that, he was a misunderstood genius with a passion for soup that no one (but Kramer) could understand. The result being a flurry of anger, passion, devastation, ended relationships and soup.
2. Mick Foley/Mankind/Dude Love/Cactus Jack – WWF/WWE
So WWF/WWE is a legitimate show and don’t bother telling me otherwise. Having said that, Mick Foley is one of my favorite wrestlers and his dedication was unparalleled. Getting thrown from large heights and putting his body on the line in every match, no matter who he was wrestling as, he went all out. On top of that, he was a crazy man when he spoke and made you want to wrestle.
1. McPoyle’s – Always Sunny
I’d consider this family one character. Never apart from each other, the McPoyles bring Sunny to the next level with their incestuous ways and knack for going to the extremes (the time they held the gang hostage). Personal favorite aspect is their affinity for constantly getting heated and their love of yelling for nothing.
5. Reggie Ledoux – True Detective
This may come across as a bit of a hot take, but Reggie Ledoux is one of the greatest red herrings in television history. So completely fucked that even the audience believes that he’s the Yellow King for a bit (spoilers: he isn’t). Obviously his character doesn’t get a ton of screen time, but there’s a ton of buildup to finding him so the name really sticks out in your head. And that shit he says to Rust right after he got arrested was all time discomforting, so pound for pound Ledoux has to make my top 5.
4. Chef – South Park
Chef was a staple when South Park was in its prime. I love everything about chef, but I think the best thing about him is that he was pretty much the only adult in the show who engaged with the kids and (usually) took the shit they said seriously, which obviously created lots of awkward, comedic situations for Chef. And I still get a kick out of any time he starts singing sexy R&B.
3. The “MY LEG!” Guy – Spongebob Squarepants
I don’t know his name. You don’t know his name. But anyone on earth age 10-30 should be able to recognize his agonizing scream. The my leg guy somehow found his way into every major accident in Bikini Bottom and managed to shatter his leg every single time. Is it the same leg each time? Does he break both? Why does he have legs when fish don’t have legs? Don’t care, he’s funny AF.
2. Hector Salamanca – Breaking Bad
In a show full of great characters, Hector Salamanca truly stands out. His old self did plenty to be remembered, what with shitting himself that one time and suicide bombing a nursing home, but the flashbacks with him and Gus are some all time TV. And you gotta give props to that actor for having some of the most poignant facial expressions I’ve ever seen.
1. The Robot Mafia – Futurama
So they’re three minor characters instead of one, sue me. The Robot Mafia is easily the funniest group of recurring robots in Futurama (finishing just ahead of Hedonism Bot and the Robot Devil) and they are ELECTRIFYING whenever they’re on screen. I had to include all three of them because they dialogue (trialogue?) is so incredible that I just chuckle continuously whenever they’re on screen.
5. “Landslide” from Always Sunny and one of Saul’s Cronies from “Breaking Bad”
- Okay so I might be bending the rules here but I don’t care because both these characters were played by the same hilarious and enormous man. The stand up comic the gang minus Dee hired as part of their “The Gang Broke Sweet Dee” episode grift AND one of Saul’s bodyguard’s along with Bill Burr, his guy just gets it. His two characters could not be more different but they are both slid perfectly into the respective scripts. Remember that time Burr and Huell (This dude) put the clamp down on Ted Beneke? They didn’t even have to touch him and he broke his fucking neck.
4. Nate Nickerson, the Maintenance worker from “The Office”
- Maybe my favorite “bumbling but lovable idiot” character, Nate first appears when applying for a job in the season 7 episode, “Sex Ed” after Dwight is picking up day laborers only to leave them in Harrisburg and tell them it’s Canada. He keeps Nate around, though, much to my enjoyment, and Nate actually doubles as a warehouse worker toon after the season 8 episode “Lotto” while keeping his job as Dwight’s maintenance man.
3. Fenton from That 70s Show
- Now Billy the Adult definitely has a point, and if he didn’t sauce Leo on this list than I might have, but by the end of the series Leo is essentially a full time cast member, being included in the opening credits. Fenton, the department store worker who is constantly “feuding” with either Eric or Fez (over a pair of pants that made Fez’s “ass look like an oil painting”) is always cracking funny jokes about living with men and “having to keep quiet about it” (it was the 70s) or “making the sugar daddy last”. A+, Fenton.
2. Mr. PoopyButthole from “Rick and Morty”
- There were really a lot of Rick and Morty side characters that I could have put up here, Bird Person, Gear Head, Abradolf Lincler, the list goes on. But I mean, it’s Mr. Poopy Butthole! The name does come across a bit lazy and leaves absolutely nothing to the imagination, but the guy has been through a lot. Getting accused of being a parasite, getting shot by Beth, and having to wait over a year and half for the next season to find out whether or not the Smith family and Rick would be okay. Ooohhweee is this a great minor character.
1. “My Leg” Guy
- Okay so longlegs beat me to it, damn him. But that just makes us both twice as right. This guy is classic. Popping up wherever danger occurred, and you always knew when he was around, because, well, my leg. It will always be an unmistakeable sound, like “oh someone is watching Spongebob, let’s find that person”. That will forever and always be my go to exclamation when I get hurt, even if it’s my arm.
Thanks for reading everyone! Be sure to check in every Tuesday for the latest top 5 debates. For basementbanter.com, this is Billy the Adult, have a great week and we’ll see you soon!