Greatest On-Screen Grandpas
It’s safe to say Irving Zisman, the main character in Johnny Knoxville’s upcoming film Bad Grandpa isn’t exactly a candidate for Grandfather of the year. Set to premiere this fall, the film features the classic shock value Jackass fans know and love. In honor of the new film, here’s a look back at some of the greatest on-screen grandpas of all time.
Grandpa Joe, Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory
Grandpa Joe gets a bad rap for being lazy, especially since he spent so much time lounging in bed with Charlie’s other grandparents. But let’s face it: he’s a decent guy. How many 96-year-olds do you know that would follow their grandchildren into a candy-obsessed stranger’s home, filled with little orange people and magic champagne? Not many. His courage in the face of uncertainty and his extremely high tolerance for sucrose earn Grandpa Joe a top spot on the list.
Don Vito Corleone, The Godfather
Yes, he’s technically the Godfather, but he’s also a grandfather. And as grandfathers go, it doesn’t get more gangster than Don Vito Corleone. Running New York’s biggest and baddest mafia crime family is a bloody job, but someone has to do it. But while he may spend his days ordering hits, he’s an afterhours family man. Corleone himself says: A man that doesn’t spend time with his family can never be a real man. For that reason alone, we’re making him an offer he can’t refuse: a spot on the greatest grandpa list.
Phil Robertson, Duck Dynasty
Phil Robertson may own a multimillion dollar company, Duck Commander, but he sure doesn’t own a razor. This bearded grandpa featured on the A&E hit series Duck Dynasty is a favorite among duck hunters, rednecks, and happy-happy-happy people everywhere. He’s a man of few words, but wise words. His infinite wisdom and quick witted one-liners span across all topics especially love: She may be an ugly woman, but if she cooks squirrels and dumplings, that’s the woman you go after. Plus, only the coolest grandparents teach you about the birds and the bees using crawfish anatomy for reference.
Grandpa Hoover, Little Miss Sunshine
Not even the most aggressive Toddlers and Tiaras type stage mom holds a candle to this pageant grandpa. Edwin Hoover travels across the country to deliver his granddaughter to the Little Miss Sunshine beauty pageant. Normally, a family road trip wouldn’t qualify someone for super grandpa status. But when the family includes one motivational speaker, a teenager under a vow of silence, and an unreliable Volkswagon – the road trip veers a bit off course. Sure, he’s a little profane. Perhaps even a bit inappropriate. And yes, he’s dabbled in drugs. But any grandpa that choreographs a dance to Super Freak is deserving of some extra recognition.
Irving Zisman, Bad Grandpa
This grandpa keeps it real. Real dirty. Back by popular demand, Jackass creators put Johnny Knoxville back in grandpa garb as Irving Zisman, and send him on a trip across the country. What’s he packing? A hidden camera, his grandson, and a loose moral code. The itinerary? Shoplifting, wedding crashing, and a lot of drinking. The script? Rumor has it, there isn’t one. It’s reported that some of the stunts are real, and the reactions just as authentic. Real or not, Irving’s antics earn him a place in the grandfather hall of fame. Even if his plaque is a little tarnished.
Author: London McGuire is a freelance writer and blogger for WeLoveTVMore.com. She enjoys writing about great food, tech and anything related to television or movies. Follow her on Twitter @londonmcguire