We've all had a boss or were a boss at some point in our lives. Some we love, some we hate but we remember them all.
In compiling this list, there were so many great options that we had to find a way to narrow them down. Thus, some qualifications were created --
The character had to be primarily known as a boss;
Considerable time had to have been spent at their place of employment; and
They had to exercise control over more than a few people who actually meant something to the show.
Remember, this list is just one person's perspective. There will be at least one boss that you love or hate that was not mentioned so please let us know in the comments!
For now, sit back, relax and enjoy 17 of the most memorable bosses in TV history!
Michael Scott, The Office
As regional manager of Dundin Mifflin Paper Company, Michael just wants is to be loved and accepted (“Do I want to be feared or loved? Easy. Both. I want people to be afraid of how much they love me.”) Still, he constantly makes his employees uncomfortable with jokes that are rarely funny and interrupts their work with pointless meetings and ridiculous ideas. Michael tries so hard to be cool but instead comes off as clueless and insensitive. Nonetheless, this big goof eventually wins over the office with his even bigger heart.
Montgomery Burns, The Simpsons
Mr. Burns is the richest man in Springfield and yet, he wants more money. Motivated by this greed, he runs the Springfield Nuclear Power Plant and uses his power and wealth to do whatever he wants. Mr. Burns is unconcerned with the safety and well-being of his employees and frequently forgets their names, particularly Homer's.
Leslie Knope, Parks and Recreation
Leslie may only be the Deputy Director of the Parks and Recreation department but its clear she runs the show. Leslie motivates her less than enthused colleagues, constantly strives to better the lives of the people of Pawnee and still has time to be an awesome friend. Plus, she always keeps her priorities straight: “We need to remember what’s important in life – friends, waffles and work or waffles, friends and work. Doesn’t matter, but work is third.”
Don Draper, Mad Men
Some may argue Roger Sterling is the boss that should be celebrated but the series focused more on Don and love him or hate him he was very memorable. He was also an alcoholic and a womanizer. Tough and demanding, this talented advertising executive might also steal your ideas and pass them off as his own.
Sam Malone, Cheers
A former relief pitcher for the Boston Red Sox, Sam was the owner and bartender of Cheers. Like Don, he’s a womanizer and an alcoholic but unlike Don, everyone still loved him. This easy-going character was the nucleus of the show and that’s saying something considering how beloved the bar and its peculiar regulars were. In a 2015 nationwide survey Sam was ranked as the TV boss people would most like to work for.
Frank Underwood, House of Cards
You do NOT want to get in the way of this boss. Frank is callous and endlessly manipulative and used these traits to work his way to the Presidency. His devious plans often hurt others and have even resulted in murder. Though he is deeply devoted to his wife Claire, even she can’t always avoid the consequences of his conniving tactics. He is insanely driven and will do whatever it takes to gain power.