It’s Father’s Day this weekend! Dads have quite an impact on our lives whether they’re around or not (just like moms!). We’ll all hopefully be spending time with our fathers, or at least with our fond memories of them this Sunday. If you have someone who’s like a father to you, well we hope you get to celebrate this holiday with him too.
But before that, let’s all take a look at other dads from our favorite science fiction and fantasy genre. Because, let’s face it, fictional dads have had an impact on all of us too.
1. Marko (Saga)
Not only did he fall totally in love with someone from an enemy race, but he had a baby with her. Marko is a pacifist caught in the middle of a decades-long war between his people and his wife’s, but he’ll do just about anything to protect their daughter, Hazel. He’s even gone as far as taking up his sword to fight even after he swore never to use it again. This guy will fight anyone who dares threaten his family.
2. Ben Sisko (Star Trek: Deep Space 9)
Let’s face it, it’s tough being able to run an entire space station and all of its drama while also trying to be an effective single parent to a teenager. Nonetheless, Sisko does a pretty awesome job of it. His son Jake turned out to be a smart, confident, independent young man. He does end up disappearing, but that was to save the entire Alpha Quadrant, his unborn second child, and Jake from the Pah-wraiths. In that case, he gets a pass.
3. Bob Parr/Mr. Incredible (The Incredibles)
We first meet Bob as the typical “meh” dad who’s caught up in his own mid-life crisis. Although, he is Dash’s defender when it comes to letting him go our for sports. When off playing hero alone, he eventually realizes that he’s only strong enough to save the world when he trusts his family to help him out.
4. Rick Grimes (The Walking Dead)
This poor guy does anything and everything he can to protect the only family he has left. After losing his wife Lori and his newborn daughter to the Governor’s attack, he wasn’t about to lose Carl. Throughout most of the series, Rick’s main goal was to find a place safe enough for his group, but most of all someplace where Carl can live a somewhat “normal” life and thrive. For a while, it seemed that he found it in a self-sustaining neighborhood. However, the proverbial sh** hits the fan, like it always does, and things get even worse for Carl. You can’t blame the man for trying though.
5. Jack Carter (Eureka)
Ol’ Jack is just a simple man in charge of a crazy town too smart for its own good. And he has a teenage daughter whom he’s raising alone. Their relationship starts out pretty rocky. Literally the first time we meet them, Jack just arrested his daughter and is driving her back to jail. Then they land in Eureka and their rocky relationship slowly transform from just trying to understand and survive this place to understanding each other (and surviving). And wouldn’t you know it, his daughter evens out to become a pretty smart young woman.
6. Ned Stark (Game of Thrones)
Bless his heart. Ned Stark is honorable to a fault. He’s strict, but loving and instills lessons of law, order, and honor into his children as best as he could. His lessons of honor are still held close to his children’s hearts, but that brand of honor got him killed. Rob, who resembled his father’s ideologies the most, was killed for it as well. Jon Snow…for all we know is dead because of his good heart as well. Pretty much all the Stark children are at risk of dying because of Ned’s infection sense of honor, but they all at one point have inspired others to do right. Hopefully, in the future, Ned’s legacy will continue to be passed along the entire kingdom.
7. Rupert Giles (Buffy, the Vampire Slayer)
His job as Buffy’s Watcher was never an easy one. Buffy, first of all, had a defiant nature about her (Duh! She’s a teenage girl). Secondly, he had to convince this teenager to fight monsters for the rest of her life. Giles and Buffy butt heads on many occasions, but Giles has always looked at Buffy as something of a daughter rather than a pupil destined to die someday. There was even a moment in their relationship where, as a true father-figure, he knew he had to take a step back out Buffy’s life and let her deal with her own problems if she were to ever grow up. But he was always there to help should she ask.
8. Joe West (The Flash)
Gee whiz. This guy always made me cry whenever Barry needed some guidance. He fathered the crap out of every emotional crisis Barry found himself in. When Joe finds out that Barry is the Flash, he giggled! He was giddy and happy, and he laughed every time Barry found a new use of his powers.
9. Henry Allen (The Flash)
Sure, Henry Allen may be stuck in prison, but that doesn’t stop him from doling out some quality fatherly advice to his son. He could have been a selfish dumb-dumb and convince his son to break him out of jail with Barry’s super speed. But he doesn’t because he knows it’s wrong and it will ultimately keep them farther apart. Henry would rather be in prison and talk with his son every so often than to never see his son again!
10. Jack Murdock (Netflix’s Daredevil)
Jack gave his blind son a fighter’s spirit (“Never give up, never surrender!”, something that keeps Matt going when he gets the life beat out of him on a nightly basis as Daredevil. He tried his darnedest to give his son everything he needed to succeed in life, a good education and enough money to give him a good life. He succeeded, but at the expense of his own life.
11. Alfred Pennyworth (Batman)
After Thomas and Martha Wayne are brutally murdered, Alfred stepped up as the sole caretaker of their young son, Bruce Wayne. He was not only the family butler but also Bruce’s mentor, teacher, doctor, confidant, and father-figure. Alfred knows Bruce better than Bruce knows himself. He’s also the only one who’s allowed to give Bruce/Batman some well-deserved lip service and not get fired for it.
12. Splinter (TMNT)
He’s a giant mutant rodent left to raise four teenage mutant turtles. Thank goodness he’s also a martial arts master, or else he would never have been able to reign in these guys. He not only taught them how to fight, but he also taught them self-control and honor. Because of that, they become heroes and save New York practically on a daily basis.
13. Uncle Iroh (Avatar: The Last Airbender)
Iroh is the only well-adjusted son of a megalomaniac emperor. Iroh’s own son died during the 100 Years War. The grief was too much and he stepped down as next in line to become emperor of the Fire Nation. After witnessing his younger brother disfigure and exile his own son, Prince Zuko, Iroh took it upon himself to go into exile with him and become a much better father to his nephew than his father could ever be. Although Zuko was a jerk and a hot-head most of the time, Iroh was able to slip in some important life lessons about patience, which ultimately makes Zuko a much better fighter.
14. Greg Universe (Steven Universe)
The love of his life, a galactic Gem warrior named Rose Quartz, had to sacrifice her own body to give birth to their son, Steven. Narratively, this would often spark a deep resentment towards the child (see Tyrion Lannister). However, Greg loves his son just as much as any father would. However, his unsuccessful rock and roll days left him inept to raise Steven properly — he lives in a van outside a car wash. Greg loves Steven enough to entrust him to Rose’s fellow Gem Warriors: Garnet, Amethyst and Pearl. He does still spend time with Steven every chance they get, and jumps at every opportunity to teach his son life lessons when the Gems can’t. Just seeing the two of them together will give anyone the heart feels.
15. Bobby Singer (Supernatural)
After John Winchester dies, Bobby steps in as Dean and Sam’s parental guide. When either one of them got in over their heads, he would bail them out and call them both “Idjits” at the same time. He’s more like the cranky uncle in the relationship, but he’s practically all the family Sam and Dean have left.