With Election Day quickly approaching us it is only fitting that we take a look at some of the great Presidents of Television and Film. The Leader of the Free World is a reasonably important job and all 5 who graced the on screen Oval Office treated the appointment with dignity and grace……….eh well some of them sort of did. Let’s jump right into the best of the best when it came to heading up the Executive Branch.
Josiah “Jed” Bartlett (The West Wing)
Between being both a Civil and Vietnam War vet, as well as spending time as a union head of a small regional airline, Jed Bartlett ticked off a lot of boxes when it came to the credentials that make an attractive President. His time in office was rife with drama including an assassination attempt, congressional upheaval, and the discovery of his multiple sclerosis leading to a censure, yet through it all he conducted himself with the poise and grace that you look forward to out of Eagle. If a tad on the goofy dad side with his jokes and historical references, he truly was what all Presidents should embody.
James Marshall (Airforce One)
With the patriotism of CIA super agent, bad-assness of an intergalactic smuggler, and intelligence and wit of an archeology professor, President Marshall was a true Head of State. Not only would he stand up to the Russians in a time of political turmoil but he also wasn’t afraid to escort unwanted guests out of his own personal aircraft. If he wasn’t so god damn presidential he could find a new career path in being a bouncer at a club, throwing people out would never be an issue again. I believe certain presidential candidates have adopted his deplaning philosophy as theirs on immigration.
Frank Underwood (House of Cards)
A true masked chameleon you never know what to expect from Francis Underwood. At one point you think he is just a feeble cripple just for him to turn out to be a notorious international criminal. He is so adept at channeling different ideals and sentiments to suit his needs at that time or for future endeavors he plays the game of politics masterfully. Who else could get away with multiple murders and blackmailing, indirectly of course, the then President out of office. Full knowledge of the necessity to gain political capital and use that to gain power is what gave Frank his presidentiality, no one was more powerful than him…….well except for maybe his wife.
Andrew Shepard (The American President)
With a firm grasp on the economy from his time spent manipulating the big banks on wall street, as well as a great source of duty having spent his early career as a humble police officer; the former most popular history professor at the University of Wisconsin was focused on consensus building for a majority of his first term. It was when dirty attacks and political horse trading became too much to bare for the principled man, that he began to yield his power as Commander in Chief. No longer willing to cower to the squabbles of individual Congressmen, President Shepard showed his teeth and how a President should lead from the front.
Selina Meyer (Veep)
While she may not be the best dancer in the world, having ascended her way from Vice to full fledged President means Meyer was fairly adept at the old D.C. two step. Despite initial failure when attempting to gain even the nomination President Meyer used the downfalls of others and perfect time to make her way into the Oval. Despite having her second term election placed before Congress, the grace under ever changing political changes show the poise needed by Duchess.