The Dad

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Dad Grades: Jack Butler From Mr. Mom

(20th Century Fox)

1983 was some year. Mario Bros made its debut at an arcade in Japan. Motorola made mobile phones available to the general public. And all across America, moviegoers were busting guts and slapping knees at the idea of a man doing… l-l-l-laundry?!? Welcome to Dad Grades for Jack Butler from Mr. Mom.

STRENGTHS

We feel it’s important to judge Michael Keaton’s character within the context of his time. The movie’s premise is rooted in the antiquated, quite sexist notion that women, not men, should treat home as a natural domain. It’s worth noting that John Hughes wrote this movie in the thick of a downturned economy, as more and more women shook the shackles of traditional gender roles and entered the workforce.

(20th Century Fox)

With that in mind..

WOW!

Check out this Super Dad! Grocery shopping? Don’t mind if he does.

(20th Century Fox)

Vacuuming? Good heavens. That’s incredible, and certainly not the lowest possible bar that could be set.

(20th Century Fox)

You may be thinking to yourself, “Hey now, grocery shopping AND vacuuming? This is just one guy, right? Surely no one man could wield such maternalistic aptitude.”

I hope you’re sitting down. He also gives them a bath.

(20th Century Fox)

The stay-at-home dad was virtually unheard of in 1983, making the character of Jack Butler quite difficult to assess fairly. Thirty-some years later, stay-at-home dads are commonplace, and no clean dishes, folded laundry, or braided daughter hair should conjure the feelings of emasculation that Mr. Mom mines for laughs.

Wait, did we mention he changes a diaper? Amazing. Every other dad is competing for bronze at this point.

 

WEAKNESSES

It’s difficult to pinpoint the weaknesses in Jack Butler. The movie itself is built on domestic incompetency; Jack does not possess the rudimentary parenting skills of a dude whose wife works. The man is a brilliant engineer, but a disastrously inept stay-at-home father.

Picking him apart for flaws is pointless. The movie’s plot is his flaw. Look. Look at the way he’s warming up this grilled cheese.

(20th Century Fox)

We get that you’re trying, dude. We really do. But even your kid knows that’s not what an iron is for.

Worry not though – by the end of the movie Jack shapes up owns his role as the house spouse.

VERDICT

Obviously, no one is batting an eye at this behavior in this day and age. Oh, you shoulder the basic responsibilities of parenthood, rejecting the archaic, chauvinistic idea that your wife should be relegated to the position of homemaker? Cool. No one is hoisting you up on their shoulders for bare-minimum fatherhood in 2019, guy.

But in 1983, this shit was groundbreaking.

(20th Century Fox)

FINAL DAD GRADE: B+

Check out our previous edition when we graded Sonny Koufax from Big Daddy!

Give The Gift of Celebrities This Valentines Day | Paternity Leave | The Dad

Like most humans, Rob has no idea what to do for Valentines Day. So he takes a little advice from his coworkers, friends, and about 20 different movie stars.

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Dad Threatening to “Turn This Car Around!” Forgets They’re Going to Dentist

(Getty/Kathleen Finlay)

BOISE, ID – Displaying immense frustration while shooting a glare into the rearview mirror, local dad Randal Burns is threatening to turn the car around, seemingly unaware he’s in the process of taking his kids to the dentist.

“So help me God, I will make an illegal u-turn at this next light,” reports a visibly defeated Randal, pleading desperately with his oldest, eight-year-old Caleb, to stop kicking the back of his seat.

“We can keep going or we can go back home; completely up to you,” he warns his two children, apparently having lost sight of the big scary drills that await them both.

“Dad usually only threatens to turn the car around if we’re going somewhere fun,” says six-year-old Bethany Burns, who’d just wrapped up a particularly deafening round of My Sibling Keeps Looking At Me. “He knows we’re en route to a dentist, right? Not Disneyland?”

Scowling his face and tightening his grip on the steering wheel, Randal adds that he had considered the turnaround just moments into the trip when Caleb purposefully crumbled an entire granola bar onto the backseat floorboard.

“I made a mess and dad said he’d turn the car around,” Caleb recalls. “Not sure if he realizes how cool we’d be with that. Dentists are polling pretty low in the backseat here.”

Randal, as if oblivious to the universal fear of having needles in your mouth, says he’s totally fine with making this next exit their exit, adding he’d better see improved behavior on the way to church next week.

Tweet Roundup: The 13 Funniest Tweets About Parenting a Sick Kid

(Getty/Jose Luis Pelaez Inc)

Do you love having your mouth sneezed into? Braving icy roads to buy ibuprofen? Falling victim to the deceit of a truant? By all means: become a parent. So kick back, holster that disinfectant, and enjoy these hilarious tweets about parenting sick kids.

Having an ill child is never fun.

So take victories where you can.

Sure, a sick kid comes in handy now and then.

But it’s mostly just a lot of work.

So before you let them stay home, make sure they’re actually sick.

It’s pretty easy to spot a faker.

But they’re sure to put a few past you.

If they’re truly sick, congrats. Now you are too.

Because that kid of yours is a walking germ farm.

What’s that? A call from the school nurse?

Go ahead and call off work for the next week, pal.

We don’t care how hard you try to avoid it.

So why not just chug that cough syrup and get in some quality time with your new gross zombie family.

Dad Apparently Same Size as House Now

(Getty/Maskot)

In a stylistic choice sure to generate buzz around the refrigerator, local kid, Melissa Hudson, 5, defied artistic convention by making her father the same size as their house in a recent drawing.

“It’s a bold take on traditional vantage points,” raved Melissa’s father, David Hudson, 33, who has the stature of a two-story house, from the looks of it.

“Notice here how she completely disregards antiquated concepts like size relationships between objects to give the illusion I’m five times taller than I actually am.”

David went on to point out the absence of a preliminary sketch, and explain how a fundamental misunderstanding of linear perspective made it possible for his daughter to depict him as being 30-feet tall.

“See this curly thing coming out of the chimney I assume is smoke?” he added. “An inferior artist with a more keen sense of visual proportionality would never allow that to be blowing in my face here.”

David also applauded Melissa’s creative decision in making him overweight and bald, as well as the avant-garde depiction of the sun, which in reality would benefit very little from wearing sunglasses.

Tweet Roundup: The Funniest Dad Tweets From January

(Getty/Image Source)

We’re only a month into the new year and Twitter is already brimming with that fatherly humor we so desperately crave. Check out what these funny dads had to say about…

Sacrifices.

Object permanence.

Pride.

Joy.

Solidarity.

Trust.

Mindfulness.

Perspective.

Listening.

First impressions.

Honesty.

And finally, keeping the spark alive.

Dad Grades: Sonny Koufax From Big Daddy

(Sony Pictures)

In 1999, Adam Sandler starred as Sonny in the box office smash Big Daddy. In a desperate attempt to convince his ex-girlfriend he’s responsible, Sonny adopts a kid named Julian, played by Zack and Cody from The Suite Life Of Zack & Cody. How does Sonny do as a dad? Let’s take a look.

STRENGTHS

The secret to being a good dad is one word: attitude. Some guys huff and puff and kick dirt when presented with the duties of fatherhood. Other guys make the most of it and say, “Hell yeah! I get to do dad stuff!” Sonny Koufax is the latter.

(Sony Pictures)

Case in point: Scuba Sam. When Julian refuses to take a bath, Sonny dresses up as the father of Scuba Steve, Julian’s favorite toy. This proves to be more effective than simply yelling.

This deeply held attitude is on full display in the courtroom scene when Sonny fights tooth and nail for the custody of young Julian.

Sonny takes the stand and gets questioned by his own dad: a lawyer, gravely disappointed in his son, believing him to be the last guy on earth who should have a kid. Sonny manages to convince him and the judge otherwise, expressing an enthusiastic, gung ho approach to parenting.

“You can be scared that I might get pickpocketed in a bad neighborhood or break my legs skiing. But don’t be scared about me being a dad, because I will not fail,” he tells daddy Koufax.

This is the sort of determination we like to see in a dad.

WEAKNESSES

When we first meet Sonny, he is irresponsible, lazy, and anything but goal-oriented. When he’s not working one day a week as a toll booth operator, he’s either napping, lounging, or getting scolded by his dad for his unwillingness to take the bar exam.

(Sony Pictures)

Sure, he grows up by the end of the movie; but the immaturity and apathy initially weigh heavily on his parental instincts. When Julian spills milk or wets the bed, Sonny’s gut reaction is to cover up the messes with newspaper.

When he and Julian miss McDonald’s breakfast by a half hour, Sonny’s anger issues are front and center. We at The Dad would like to give a resounding “don’t do that” to yelling at service industry workers, especially in front of your children.

Sonny also loses points for the original motive behind this adoption. Do not, we repeat, DO NOT adopt a child to demonstrate maturity to an ex.

VERDICT

Despite his shaky start, Sonny Koufax proved himself to be a fully capable dad. Immature, yes; but we feel he’s exhibited an eagerness to grow. Could probably stand to be less lenient. Can’t say we recommend letting your kid pick their own names, especially if the name they run with is Frankenstein.

FINAL DAD GRADE: B-

Check out our previous edition when we graded Homer Simpson.