Atticus gets an “A”

The top 10 best fictional dads ever

I try to be a good dad, but I’m not sure I’ll ever get to Howard Cunningham levels of greatness.

And since I’ve been told by my family that my pop culture touchstones are those of an old man, I’ll explain. Howard was Richie and Joanie (and for a very short time, Chuck) Cunningham’s dad on the 70s sitcom, ‘Happy Days.’ He was hardworking, kind, and even street smart when he needed to be.

When they make the Great Fictional Dad Mount Rushmore, he’s going to be on it. We’ve compiled a list of other candidates who embody idealized fatherhood.

Here’s our list of the top 10 fictional father figures.

Howard Cunningham
‘Happy Days’
Remember when Richie and Potsie got fleeced playing in a rigged poker game with a group of fraternity brother card sharks and Howard went and won all the money back? That was awesome.










Frank Costanza
He’s loud, confrontational and sometimes cold, but he seems to know what’s best for George – whether George realizes it or not. Rest easy, Jerry Stiller.







Atticus Finch
‘To Kill a Mockingbird’
Honorable, smart, loving and loyal, he’s the model – nay, the very standard – of excellent fatherhood.






Ned Stark
‘Game of Thrones’
The man had a code.







Arthur Weasley
‘Harry Potter’
His enthusiasm and curiosity are contagious, and that outlook on life set a great example for the rest of the brood.




Marlin the fish
‘Finding Nemo’
When Nemo goes missing, Marlin goes way, way out of his way – facing great danger – to bring him home. Well done, Marlin.







Clark Griswold
National Lampoon’s ‘Vacation’ movies
Clark is always trying very hard to be Ward Cleaver, and he sometimes succeeds. Despite the wackiness that tends to ensue, there’s no denying he puts family first.







Hal Wilkerson
‘Malcom in the Middle’
He’s goofy, reckless and doesn’t always make the right parenting decisions, but he’s willing to humiliate himself for his kids, which says a lot. (Perhaps worth noting: Bryan Cranston makes both the ‘Best Dads’ list and ‘Worst Dads‘ list.)





Michael Bluth
‘Arrested Development’
A little clueless, but he always means well, and is the moral center of the Bluth family. Also, “Egg?”







Mike Brady
‘The Brady Bunch’
The king of wise-dad-speeches and (apparently) an architect extraordinaire.








Tell us: Who belongs on the Best Dads Ever list?

Categories: Dad on Bored