Sorry David Bowie these people couldn’t be heroes for one second!
Not everybody has what it takes to be a hero. In some cases its because they are weak, cowardly, selfish or amoral. In others however they can be strong, brave, dashing, handsome, sexy, noble, have all the right ingredients on paper, but fail for one simple reason. They are completely fucking useless!
In this article we will briefly look at what I feel are the 4 most useless heroes on television. All of these characters really did mean well. They all have the heart of noble warrior, but sadly the competency of Homer Simpson.
4/ Emma Swan (Once Upon A Time)
I am sorry to have to include her here. I do like the character. She has an interesting backstory, great characterisation, and Jennifer Morrison who plays her is brilliant in the role.
Sadly however she makes this list simply because she NEVER saves the day. Seriously try and find me a main villain of the series that Emma has actually defeated?
In series 1 it is Henry who in a way brings down the Evil Queen. He is the one who stops Emma from eating the apple which forces Emma and the Evil Queen to work together which ultimately reveals the truth.
In season 2 it is Snow who kills Cora (following Rumple’s orders) in season 3 it is Rumple himself who kills Peter Pan, whilst Zelena the Wicked Witch is defeated by Regina.
In season 4 the snow queen is stopped by Ana, whilst Rumple is beaten by Belle. The Author meanwhile is beaten by Henry.
In season 5 Emma does kill Hook to be fair and she also killed Cruelle in season 4. Even then however Cruella couldn’t kill anyone and Hook also wanted Emma to kill him. Finally Hades the main villain of season 5 is killed by Zelena.
I haven’t seen the 6th season yet. Maybe Emma finally stops the badguy herself but really for the so called saviour its pretty poor that in the first 5 years she only killed two main villains, one of whom couldn’t kill anyone and another who wanted her to kill him.
This is pretty much what always happens in Once Upon A Time. The badguy is completely unstoppable and is about to kill everyone, Emma included, but then someone else bursts in and saves the day leading the viewer to wonder why Emma is called the saviour.
3/ Merlin (Merlin)
Again I liked this show a lot and Colin Morgan who played the character was excellent in the role. Sadly however Merlin ultimately makes the list as not only does he fuck everything up in the show but he is also technically a traitor to his kind too.
The premise of Merlin is that magic has been outlawed in Camelot by the tyrant Uther Pendragon. However an ancient prophecy states that one day Arthur and Merlin will bring magic back to Camelot.
Only problem is that this never happens! Now to be fair I did used to think that this was quite a good twist on the legend that Merlin’s knowledge of the great future caused him to make the wrong decisions. However I have changed my opinion now only in that it would have been better if he and Arthur had at least accomplished something before Arthur’s death. I get that they needed to have Arthur die just like the myths but they should have had Arthur at least bring magic back before he died. Ultimately Merlin just looks like someone who supported two regimes that persecuted his own kind and turned his friend Morgana evil.
2/ Kendra the Vampire Slayer
The short lived slayer from Buffy’s second season. Kendra is most famous for her dodgy accent, but she was also quite a useless slayer too.
Granted she never went rogue and tried kill people like Faith. Still as a Vampire Slayer she has a pretty poor track record. She is killed by Drusilla barely a year into being a Slayer.
To be fair Kendra unlike the others on this list is meant to be lame. She is meant to highlight how Buffy is a superior Slayer as Kendra never thinks for herself. Still it cannot be denied she was a pretty lousy and unimpressive Slayer.
1/ Hawkman (Arrowverse)
The most useless hero. Hawkman is reborn over and over only to be killed by the exact same guy, Vandal Savage each time. Vandal Savage kills him over 200 times.
Then when Hawkman finally defeats him (only with help from two teams of heroes) Vandal returns and kills Hawkman again in a one on one fight, before going on to drink his blood.
No matter whatever the time or place, Hawkman will always be Vandal Savage’s little bitch.
I don’t think that it was a good idea to have Vandal Savage kill Hawkman and Hawkgirl so many times. It just made them look too inept that they couldn’t beat one guy for over a thousand years. Though Hawkman does finally triumph over Savage at the end of Legends of Tomorrow, but still its only with help and the score is still something like Vandal Savage 270, Hawkman 1.
Overall I’d say that’s a poor track record for any hero against his enemy and just makes Hawkman look all the more inept.
On top of that the only reason he was picked for the mission was because he was deemed unimportant by Rip Hunter and thus if he did die then it wouldn’t make that big a change in the timeline.
You know, I think you are on to something here. Although I am an avid fan of fantasy, none of these series you mention have ever really ‘gripped’ me. Now I know why! Perhaps it was their non climactic and non heroic elements! Thanks for posting 🙂
I don’t know if you’ve watched the recent Iron Fist series on Netflix, but Danny Rand is a pretty useless hero too. He only gets a few instances of “saving the day”, causes more problems than he solves, and is repeatedly told by both friends and enemies what a terrible Iron Fist he is (while doing little to prove them wrong).
Haven’t seen it yet. I must admit I am not keen on the Marvel tv shows, but I”ll give it a shot. I feel a bit bad about ever saying the Tenth Doctor didn’t save the day enough after looking at these clowns LOL
You don’t need to waste too much time on it!