This post is a part of Geek Takeover Week 2012.
Your companions can really make or break a road trip. The bad wearing you down to the mental capacity of Brad Pitt’s character in 12 Monkeys. People who drive us crazy while we’re driving make for torturous rides but passengers who are simply crazy fulfill the psychotic balance required to happily road trip for hours.
These are the top 10 characters from science-fiction, fantasy, and imagination that would make any long car ride anything but forgetful.
10. Bellatrix Lestrange (Harry Potter)
Imagine the benefits of having an evil witch sitting in your car the next time you’re on a highway with a tailgater right up your bumper. Or someone driving half the speed limit in front of you. Or [insert favorite driver pet peeve here].
9. Captain Jack Sparrow
I bet there are a number of you who would love to have Johnny Depp sitting in your passenger seat but I can see Captain Jack’s improvisational skills coming in very handy if you get pulled over for speeding. Although there’s an equal chance it might just land you in jail – part of the fun I suppose.
8. Bumblebee (Transformers)
I could as easily put Optimus Prime here instead but he’s just so damn serious. Bumblebee also happens to be more eco-friendly and I don’t think would complain as much if asked to drive all night while I get some sleep.
7. Riddler (Batman)
We’ve all tried to invent verbal games 6 hours into a long night of driving and most of them end in one of several ways: thinking your game is stupid, thinking the person you’re playing with is stupid, or believing you’re an idiot for even trying. A least the Riddler’s brain teasers won’t let you down. (So long as it’s not the Jim Carrey version of Riddler. If it is, leave him by the side of the road and don’t look back.)
6. Avery Brooks (Benjamin Sisko)
No, I don’t mean Captain Benjamin Sisko, the role he played on Deep Space 9; I’m talking about the actor Avery Brooks. He’s not fictional but he is way out there. Every time I listen to him speak I wonder if I’m hearing something so profound I’m too stupid to understand it or if he’s been drinking a little too much prophet juice. A few hours on a road trip would be one step toward clearing that up.
5. Garak (Deep Space 9)
While I’d want to hit the road with Avery Brooks over Captain Sisko, the constantly lying, manipulating Garak is the fictional character from that show perfect for road trip intrigue. The only drawback being he may kill you, make it look like an accident, and steal your car.
4. Nancy Botwin (Weeds)
From soccer mom to drug dealer this woman is constantly complicating her life in a way that’s bizarrely seductive to watch. With Nancy in the car you’ll either hear some amazing tales or get conned into her next sketchy plan. Whichever happens, it’s a win.
An alien who drinks, parties, and has a dirty sense of humor makes for good company. Plus the constant threat of government pursuit helps break up the monotony of driving long hours while giving you a great excuse to go well over the speed limit.
2. Ellen Ripley
You tired? Ripley doesn’t care. Need to stop for a snack? Ripley thinks you’re a sissy. Have to pee so bad you’ve got cramps in your abdomen? Ripley’s seen worse.
Aside from being ridiculous and hilarious, Borat’s naivety allows him to expose people’s inner thoughts and philosophies inconspicuously. He does things and asks questions you or I probably never would, somehow making him a clever anthropologist. Very nice!
Who do you wish could be in the passenger seat the next time you get in an automobile for a road adventure? What qualities make your fictional characters fun to ride with? Psychosis, magic powers, lots of gas money? I want to hear who makes your top 10 in the comments below!