The Top 15 Deadbeat Movie Parents

For whatever reason, movies and TV series love to trot out a long-lost parent for the protagonist to deal with. Often it’s a reason for our hero to consider whether they are a product of their environment or their genetic makeup, sometimes it’s just a cheap plot device, and always it strikes us that these deadbeat movie parents get forgiven too easily for abandoning their children. Sure, they have their reasons, but movie parents typically have reasons stemming from blind ignorance, ineffectual protectiveness or pure selfishness.

So before you check out how Hiccup’s mother Valka fares in this weekend’s How to Train Your Dragon 2, take a look at the history of deadbeat movie parents and decide for yourself which of these absentee moms and hobo fathers deserve redemption, and which deserve to be thrown under a bus.

William Bibbiani is the editor of CraveOnline’s Film Channel and the host of The B-Movies Podcast and The Blue Movies Podcast. Follow him on Twitter at @WilliamBibbiani.