Today, I am back with another Top Five Wednesday. This week’s topic is characters you wish you could drown. I don’t know about you, but there are a bevy of characters I would like to see meet a watery end. My commentary may be a little harsh and judgmental, but I have strong feelings about these characters. And it’s all in good fun. Here are my top five choices:
5. Bella Swan from The Twilight Saga
Okay, so I haven’t actually read the Twilight series. I am basing my feelings for Bella on the movies. With her constant moping, obsessing and illogical decisions, Bella is easily one of the most annoying characters in Young Adult literature. Not only does she set a bad example for young women (giving up your life to get married and have a child at 18), but she does nothing of value throughout the series. She is the one who has to be saved. I don’t know if it is the same way in the books, but Kristen Stewart made Bella out to be a clueless dimwit who was incredibly indecisive when it came to choosing a man. Not that her choices were great. There was Edward Cullen, the vegan vampire and stalker in-training who inspired another insufferable literary character, Christian Grey. But more on him later. Bella’s other choice Jacob whom, when you look past the six pack abs, has a mean streak and stalkerish tendencies. The smart choice for Bella was to make no choice at all. She was only a teenager and had her whole life to find a man. Alas, Bella ultimately chooses Edward and immortality. Yawn. And do not even get me started on their daughter.
4. The entire cast of Fifty Shades of Grey
I have never read the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy and nor do I plan to. But since I have seen Twilight, the series Shades is based on, and heard people talk about the “plot” of the book, I think I am at liberty to judge it. The characters in Fifty Shades of Grey are just as insufferable as their Twilight counterparts. Christian is an abusive control freak who also moonlights as a stalker. Anastasia is a Bella Swan-esque virginal goddess who, like Bella, has horrible taste in men. What annoys me most about this book however, is its popularity. It truly baffles my mind how a self-published piece of fanfiction made millions of dollars and landed a movie deal. And to top it all off, author E.L. James is publishing a book on writing advice. I say drown Christian, Anastasia and the lot. The world of literature would be far better off without them.
3. Cersei Lannister from A Song of Ice and Fire by George R.R. Martin
George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire saga is filled with characters just begging to be drowned. Ramsay Bolton. Melisandre. Joffrey Baratheon. In fact, the later character is arguably the most hated person in Westeros and the series. But since he met his death in the third book, A Storm of Swords, I have decided to omit him from this list. No, the character I wish to see drown is Cersei Lannister. Arrogant and extraordinarily narrow minded, Cersei is unfit to make decision regarding the future of Westeros but she does it anyway. She allows her jealously, anger and resentment to govern her decision. In addition to staging the death of her husband and sleeping with her brother, Cersei locks up Margarey Tyrell simply because she feels as though the young maiden will usurp her as queen. Cersei also demands the head of her brother Tyrion for killing Joffrey, even though she has no evidence to support her claim. If Cersei does have one redeeming quality, it is that she loves her children, but I do not believe that is enough to absolve her of responsibility. I have a feeling her time in Westeros is coming to an end.
2. The Ewells (aka the Racist Bigots) from To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
To Kill a Mockingbird is one of my favorite novels of all time. Though it was written in the early sixties, its message of love and tolerance is relevant today. I re-read the book once a summer and plan to venture to Maycomb, Alabama again before of the July release of its sequel Go Set a Watchman. Every time I read it however, I am floored by the racisim of the Ewells. It breaks my heart that people would lie just to see someone die whose only “crime” is being born of a different color. I always hope for a different outcome when I read the book, but with its tragic conclusion I am always reminded that justice does not always reign supreme in the world. People like Atticus however, are the hope we need for a better tomorrow. As for the Ewells, I say drown them. The world would be better off without their poisonous ideology and behavior.
1. Dolores Jane Umbridge from Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J.K. Rowling
Hem hem. What can I say about this universally loathed Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher aka Harbinger of Terror? She is an absolute nightmare. A pink nightmare to be exact. But isn’t Voldemort the big villian of the series? Shouldn’t he be number one on my Characters to Drown list? Don’t get me wrong. I hate Voldemort, absolutely hate him. He is an awful human being who is obsessed with immortality. But with Voldemort, I am expected to hate him. He is the bad guy. Umbridge however, is in a position of authority. Her number one priority is to help the Minister of Magic protect the Wizarding World, Umbridge goes out of her way to deny that Voldemort has returned. She creates legislation that forbids students from protecting themselves and punishes Harry for when he speaks the truth. As the series goes on, she aggressively accuses Muggle-born witches and wizards of stealing their magic and sends them to Azkaban. Among her list of offenses is using Mad-Eye-Moody’s glass eye as a security camera-like device for her office. Talk about having no disregard for the dead. Umbridge may be against Voldemort, but she does everything in her power to make Harry life’s a living hell. Umbridge is the reason I have such a hard time re-reading Order of the Phoenix. And for that I commend Rowling. Who else could create a character more hated than Voldemort? I just wish she met her end in Deathly Hallows which is why she is in the number one position on my list. If there is one person who deserves to drown, it’s Umbridge. Want more insight into why I hate this woman? Buzzfeed posted a great article articulating my points.