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7 Memorable TV Bosses

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Happy National Boss Day! The holiday was first celebrated in 1958 by Patricia Bays Haroski. She felt bad about forgetting her boss’s birthday, so she registered the date as a holiday. (Her boss was also her dad.) Since it’s Saturday and lots of folks won’t be hanging out at the office, we thought we’d round up a few of the most memorable television bosses, and let you guys fill in others we missed.

1. Michael Scott, The Office
“People say that I am the best boss,”  says Michael Scott, the man in charge at Dunder-Mifflin Scranton on the first episode of the American version of The Office. Though the blundering-but-always well-intentioned character played by Steve Carell is based on Ricky Gervais’s character on the original British Office, Michael Scott has become the modern equivalent of a bad boss.


2. Mr. Burns, The Simpsons
Since the very first season of The Simpsons, Homer Simpson has been reporting for duty at Springfield’s nuclear power plant, owned and operated by C. Montgomery Burns, who spends most of his time monitoring his workers via closed-circuit television. Ultimately a cold-hearted, money-hungry man, Mr. Burns is often painted as Springfield’s villan. The character was originally voiced by Christopher Collins, but shortly after Mr. Burns’ first appearance, the role was given to Harry Shearer.

3. DA Jack McCoy, Law and Order

In 2008, Sam Waterson’s character replaced Fred Thompson as the District Attorney after years of serving as the Executive Assistant District Attorney. Though his promotion was primarily on the original Law and Order, his first appearance in the position actually occurred during an episode of Law and Order: SVU.  The next year, when running for re-election, McCoy is often accused of employing extreme legal tactics to bolster his campaign. McCoy is the second-longest tenured character on the show, after Lt. Anita Van Buren (S. Epatha Merkerson).

4. Lou Grant, The Mary Tyler Moore Show
News producer Lou Grant was played by Ed Asner. Though originally he comes off as a hard-drinking, hard-nosed newsman, Mary Tyler Moore eventually befriends him. Asner’s character was so beloved by audiences, that in 1977, CBS gave him his own spin-off. Unlike the comedic Mary Tyler Moore Show, however, Lou Grant was a drama.


5. Wilhelmina Slater, Ugly Betty
Super diva Wilhelmina Slater is a former supermodel and the one-time editor-in-chief of Mode magazine, the fictional publication on Ugly Betty. During the first two seasons of the show she served as Creative Director of the magazine, after a long tenure as a personal assistant. Her diabolical schemes — which include everything from black mail to having family members committed — were generally aimed toward Daniel Meade, who held the position of editor-in-chief before her.

6. Dr. Miranda Bailey, Grey’s Anatomy
Known as “the Nazi,” Dr. Miranda Bailey (played by Chandra Wilson) is in charge of surgical interns at the start of Grey’s Anatomy. Her no-nonsense demeanor scares the interns, but eventually she becomes a trusted mentor.

7. Cosmo G. Spacely, The Jetsons
When George Jetson reported for daily duty at Spacely Space Sprockets, the man in charge was Cosmo G. Spacely, whose big personality often resulted in him firing (and ultimately re-hiring) Jetson. Spacely, who was voiced by Mel Blanc (who did the voices of many other memorable characters, including Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, Tweety Bird, Foghorn Leghorn, Woody Woodpecker, and Barney Rubble) much like many of the other bosses on this list, often found a way to become involved in his employees’ lives.


Who was your favorite TV boss? Tell us in the comments.

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The 5 Best Sci-Fi Movies on Netflix Right Now
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Nicolas Cage stars in Knowing (2009).
Vince Valitutti/Summit Entertainment

If you’re in the mood for some speculative fiction and your pile of Arthur C. Clarke books has been exhausted, you could do worse than to tune in to Netflix. The streaming service is constantly acquiring new films in the sci-fi and fantasy genres that should satisfy most fans of alternative futures. Here are five of the best sci-fi movies on Netflix right now.

1. THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL (1951)

If any film stands as a proper influence on The Twilight Zone and its use of science-fiction and fantasy to mask political and civil issues, it’s The Day the Earth Stood Still, a Cold War-era parable about an alien named Klaatu who arrives on Earth carrying a warning about warfare. Naturally, all humans want to do is shoot him.

2. METROPOLIS (1927)

Inspiring everything from Star Wars to Lady Gaga, Fritz Lang’s silent epic about a revolt among the oppressed people who help power an upper-class city remains just as visually impressive today as it did nearly 100 years ago.

3. TROLL HUNTER (2010)

A Norwegian fairy tale with bite, Troll Hunter follows college-aged filmmakers who convince a bear trapper to take them along on his exploits. But the trapper fails to disclose one crucial detail: He hunts towering, aggressive trolls.

4. KNOWING (2009)

The histrionics of Nicolas Cage: You either like them or you don’t. Knowing is Cage at half-caf: While he enjoys a few meltdown scenes, he’s largely reserved here as an astrophysics professor who stumbles onto information that could herald the end of the world.

5. THE HOST (2006)

A slow-burn monster movie from South Korea, The Host has plenty of tense scenes coupled with a message about environmental action: The river-dwelling beast who stalks a waterfront town is the product of chemical dumping.  

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11 Delicious Facts About Good Burger
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Paramount Pictures

It takes just 14 words—“Welcome to Good Burger, home of the Good Burger, can I take your order?”—to make a ‘90s kid swoon with nostalgia. Good Burger, the beloved Nickelodeon comedy about a couple of daft teens who try to save their fast food joint from corporate greed, was born out of a Kenan Thompson/Kel Mitchell sketch on All That in the mid-'90s. A year later, due to its popularity, it found itself being turned into its own live-action movie, with Brian Robbins at the helm. Today—20 years after its original release—it’s a silly cult hit that’s indelibly a part of Generation Y. Revisit the classic with these facts about Good Burger.

1. KEL MITCHELL AUDITIONED FOR ALL THAT WITH HIS CHARACTER FROM GOOD BURGER.

In an interview with The A.V. Club, Kel Mitchell explained how he came up with Ed. “I did a ‘dude’ voice, and that’s where Ed [from Good Burger] was kind of born,” he said. “I did that there at the audition. They were just cracking up.”

2. ED’S FIRST APPEARANCE WAS IN THE JOSH SERVER SKETCH, “DREAM REMOTE.”

Essentially, Good Burger was born out of a random character decision made during one little sketch. “It was where [Josh] could have a remote control that could control his entire life,” Mitchell told The A.V. Club. “So, he could fast-forward through his sister nagging, he could make pizza come really quickly. I was the pizza guy. I came to the door, and the pizza guy didn’t really have a voice, so I was like, ‘Mleh, here’s your pizza! That was the first time we saw Ed, and so they created Good Burger.”

3. ED’S LOOK WAS INSPIRED BY MILLI VANILLI.

When prepping for Ed’s debut on All That, Kel Mitchell spotted what would become the character’s signature look. “I remember I went to the hair room, and I saw these braids. It was like these early Brandy ’90s Milli Vanilli braids. I put those on, and it came to life,” he told The A.V. Club.

4. THOUSANDS OF POUNDS OF MEAT STUNK UP THE SET.

Nickelodeon

For a movie all about burgers, you better believe the production had a ton of them sitting around on set. "At one point, there was over 1750 pounds of meat on the set," Kenan Thompson told The Morning Call. "Some of it was old meat. It was so nasty. Some of the burgers would stay out there for a long time. I felt sorry for the extras who had to eat them with cold, clammy fries. But on screen, those burgers look good."

5. ELMER’S GLUE WAS USED TO KEEP THE FOOD LOOKING FRESH.

In order to keep the food looking good on screen, the production resorted to old, albeit inedible, tricks. "It was so gross, because when I scoop out ice cream in the movie, it was really vegetable shortening with food coloring,” Mitchell told The Morning Call. “When I poured milk on cereal, we used Elmer's Glue so the flakes wouldn't get soggy."

6. KENAN AND KEL CONTRIBUTED TO THE GOOD BURGER SOUNDTRACK.

Good Burger was their baby, so of course Kenan and Kel took the reins on more than just the creation of the characters, according to a 1997 interview with The Morning Call. Specifically, Kel partnered up with Less Than Jake on the hit song, “We’re All Dudes.” Because of this, the soundtrack actually charted at 101 on the Billboard 200.

7. GOOD BURGER WAS LINDA CARDELLINI’S FEATURE FILM DEBUT.

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In an interview with The A.V. Club, the Freaks and Geeks star reminisced about her breakout role in the Nickelodeon movie. “That’s my sister’s favorite role that I’ve ever played! It was so much fun. It was my first film, and it was a fantastic part,” Cardellini said. “I got to play crazy! Nobody knew who I was, and I got the part from the table read.”

8. WRITER DAN SCHNEIDER INTENDED TO GIVE UP ACTING WHEN HE WROTE GOOD BURGER, BUT HE PLAYED MR. BAILY IN THE FILM.

On creating Good Burger, writer/producer/actor Dan Schneider explained to The A.V. Club: “I’ve always wanted to write, and after I was doing All That and Kenan & Kel, I got the opportunity to do another TV show—I was still going on auditions. I realized that if I took that show, I was going to have to give up All That and Kenan & Kel. I really didn’t want to do [that] ... I passed on the acting role, and that was really the turning point, I guess, in 1996, when I was like, ‘You know what? I’m going to put my acting career on the back burner, and I’m going to be a writer-producer.’ Then I wrote the movie Good Burger.” However, if you watch the movie, you’ll notice Schneider starring as Mr. Baily.

9. THE ORIGINAL TRAILER FEATURED A SCENE THAT DIDN’T MAKE THE MOVIE.

For reasons that remain a mystery, a scene where a Good Burger customer orders “a good shake” from Ed (Mitchell), only to receive an actual bodily shaking from the Good Burger employee, didn’t make the final cut. It did, however, feature for a few seconds in the theatrical trailer.

10. KENAN AND KEL REUNITED FOR A GOOD BURGER SKETCH ON THE TONIGHT SHOW.

In 2015, Kenan and Kel reunited for a Good Burger sketch with Jimmy Fallon. This time, however, Fallon played Ed’s co-worker, while Kenan came in as a construction worker as a surprise. "We've been wanting to get back together," Mitchell told E! News. "It was just about the right project ... it felt like home."

11. THE FIRST LINE IN THE FILM IS THE SAME AS THE LAST LINE.

Appropriately, the line is, “Welcome to Good Burger, home of the Good Burger, can I take your order?”—just watch the movie.

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