Thursday, August 23, 2007

The Worst Golf Villain of All Time?

With all of the sniping going on in professional golf these days including Rory Sabbatini calling Tiger "beatable", Michelle Wie dropping out of tournaments and everyone screaming foul, Daly smoking 4 cigarettes from tee to green on a par 3, Sergio whining, etc, the golf world is abuzz with stories "vilifying" players. This got me thinking about "Golf villains."

Kaiser Soze (Usual Suspects), Hannibal Lechter (Silence of The Lambs), Darth Vader (If you don't know this you should be deported from the planet), and a few others are always debated as the most "Evil" movie characters of all time. What about in the world of Golf movies? Who is the most evil movie golf villain of all? Here are the nominees:

Judge Smails (Caddyshack): Smails may not just be the most evil man in the history of golf movies but he may also be a nominee for most evil movie character of all time. He certainly ranks ahead of Johnny Lawrence from “The Karate Kid” and Norman Bates from “Psycho”. I can't remember one scene where he was likable or a moment where I felt sad or happy for him. Even Denzel in "Training Day" managed to deceive us for a minute or two that he was a good guy. Smails is a Country Club snob who believes he is above everyone and makes no secret of his feelings. He is rude to his friends and his family. He also has a temper on the course and you can tell a lot about a person by the way he acts on the golf course. Smails throws clubs, yells and cheats. He treats people like crap - look how horribly he treated his grandson Spalding, "You'll get nothing and like it!" when Spalding wanted lunch during a round of golf. He would not let Dr. Beeper return a page on the golf course thus demonstrating that the well being of others is of little or no concern to him. He has a volatile temper demonstrated when he threw putter from the 18th green over the clubhouse hitting a woman while she ate her lunch. He actually let his caddy take the blame for the flying putter and proceeded to tip him $.50 for caddying 18 holes. I think when Danny Noonan approached him about the caddy scholarship and Smails responded with, "The World Needs Ditch Diggers Too" it pretty much summarizes his character. He is so cold that he is almost inhuman.

Auric Goldfinger(Goldfinger): For those not familiar with Goldfinger, it was a 1964 James Bond flick and possibly the best Bond flick of them all. I would highly suggest renting it if you have not seen it. Aside from being a gold smuggler and a murderer Mr. Goldfinger is also a cheater. He cheats at cards and he cheats at golf. To his credit he did pay his golf bet when he lost a game to James Bond. Even if we put aside our feelings about Goldfinger as a murderer and a smuggler, he is still a serial cheater. We all know plenty of cheaters,Judge Smails cheated as well but Goldfinger plans for cheating in advance and it is part of the sport for him. What also makes Goldfinger truly stand out as an "Evil "golfer is that he uses his bodyguard/driver/assassin "Oddjob" as a caddy. Oddjob is a pretty intimidating guy considering that he kills people by throwing his bladed hat at them resulting in the target being beheaded. I think if you cheat and bring an assassin as a caddy that's pretty bad if he helps you cheat that’s even worse. When Bond won the round and exposed Goldfinger as a cheater Oddjob crushed a golf ball with his bare hand and beheaded a statue with his hat to show Bond just what could happen to him for exposing Goldfinger. When I play with someone and they improve a lie or magically find a ball in the woods in plain sight propped up on a good lie with an easy exit after 10 minutes of looking for it I usually say, “wow you play like Auric Goldfinger” they think I am referring to some European tour player or something. It is my way of saying, “You are a cheater.”

Shooter Mcgavin (Happy Gilmore): Shooter is a showoff and gets his name from the fact he likes to make a childish shooting expression with his fingers when he knocks the golf ball in the hole. I know that if I played with anyone who did the shooting move after sinking a putt I probably would not play with them again. For the most part I don't think rest of Shooter's selfish, deceitful, and childish behavior seems too different from many of the Primadonnas on the tour these days. His character is a more dramatic, comedic, and entertaining version of what we hear at most post PGA event press conferences. In addition to his trademark shooting gesture when he celebrates, what makes Shooter special is that he would take an old lady's house away to assure he wins a "Gold Jacket" (move version of a Green Jacket) as he demonstrated by buying Happy's Grandmother's house from the bank. Kicking an old lady out of her house is really bad. However, from a golf perspective the shooting gesture is worse than what he did to Granny. The shooting move is golf's equivalent to nails on a chalkboard while being poked with a sharp stick. I get chills just thinking about Shooter's celebratory move.

David Simms (Tin Cup): Tin Cup itself is a great movie. Every time it is on I stop what I am doing and I am just drawn in by the drama right away. I think I once toggled between Tin Cup and The Masters for two hours and I watched a few minutes of it during game 6 of the Sox/Yankees ALCS Series in 2004 (I am a big Sox fan). For Don Johnson and Cheech Marin the movie totally makes up for "Nash Bridges" and for Kevin Costner it is at least a down payment on "Waterworld" and "The Postman." David Simms is not that bad of a guy but because Tin Cup (Costner) is so likeable and such an underdog and Simms is his nemesis it makes Simms look like more of a pretentious jerk than most touring pros. Later in the movie we learn that he also hates puppies and old people. However, it should be noted that to the best of our knowledge Simms did not kick any old people out of their homes like Shooter Mcgavin and as far as athletes who hate animals he can't hold a candle to Michael Vick. I am not sure he is evil as much as he is the perfect arch-rival for Tin Cup. The stark contrast between Simms and Tin Cup paints Simms in a very evil light.

1 comment:

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