5.) Stan Gable – Revenge of the Nerds (1984)

Played by: Ted McGinley

Long before he showed up and caused many beloved TV Shows to “jump the shark”, Ted McGinley terrorized nerds on the campus of Adams College as the perfectly coiffured all-American quarterback and President of the Alpha Beta fraternity – a murderer’s row of stereotypical 1980’s frat guy jerks. Stan, Ogre, and the rest of the Alpha Betas were epic assholes whose list of transgressions against nerdkind is legendary. Their first act of douchebaggery occurs early on in the film when they carelessly burn down their own frat house, then displace hundreds of students by taking over the freshmen dorms, forcing them to live like refugees on cots in the gymnasium. They did this, mind you, by storming into the dorm and literally tossing people out of windows onto the campus green. Ahhh, college life in the 80’s…the parties, the women, the unprovoked persecution and assault. At any rate, Stan gets his comeuppance in one of the most bizarre ways possible, as one of the nerds steals his homemade Darth Vader disguise and uses it to rape his girlfriend in a funhouse. Yes, really.

4.) Chet Donnelly – Weird Science (1985)

Played by: Bill Paxton

Ahh, the immortal Bill Paxton. A year before he freaked out and screamed “We’re all gonna die down here, man. Game over man, GAME OVER!” as space marine Private Hudson in Aliens, he tormented his little brother Wyatt and Wyatt’s best friend Gary as the militaristic, cigar-chompin, buzzcut -wearing, turkey-shootin’ lunatic Chet. Paxton was wildly entertaining in the role, with a memorable douchebag laugh that reverberated through the cherrry wood hallways of his parents’ suburban home in good ol’ Shermer, Illinois (the fictional town in which all John Hughes comedies are set). Chet boasts the finest arsenal of insults on this list, with gems like “YOU’RE STEWED, BUTTWAD!”, “I WOULDN”T GIVE A SQUIRT OF PISS FOR YOUR ASS RIGHT NOW!”, “THE BOOZE HOUNDS RETURN, WHAT A JOKE.”, and best of all, “HOW ABOUT A NICE, GREASY PORK SANDWICH SERVED IN A DIRTY ASHTRAY?” Chet is also notable for being the only bully on this list to be magically transformed into a bloated, oozing, pus-filled, gelatinous blob creature with a pre-hensile tongue.

3.) Roy Stalin – Better Off Dead (1985)

Played by: Aaron Dozier

Savage Steve Hollands masterpiece of absurdity produced one of the great all-time bullies in Roy Stalin, who cruelly screwed John Cusack out of a spot on the ski team and stole his girlfriend away with effortless dickishness. Whenever poor Lane Meyer tried to forget about Beth and move on, Stalin would pop up to pour salt and lemon juice in the wound with Beth on his arm and a barrage of snarky insults. However, thanks to the relentless pursuit of a psychotic paperboy who wanted “two dollars!”, Lane was able to vanquish Stalin on the dreaded K-12 on one ski! Note: Dickery begins at 1:02.

2.) Biff Tannen – Back to the Future Trilogy (1985 – 1990)

Played by: Thomas F. Wilson

Biff waged his war on Hill Valley dweebs across time and space, appearing in different incarnations from 1885 all the way to the year 2019. His main target was George McFly, whom he bullied for 30 years straight – barring him from eating in the Hill Valley diner and making him do all of his homework assignments in the 1950’s. Then later in life, Biff carried the torment over to 1985 – forcing McFly to do his reports for him at work, as well as trashing the family car and blaming it on a “blind spot”, expecting George’s car insurance to cover the repairs. Biff was characterized by his horrible flat-top haircut, a predeliction for the word “butthead”, and botched one-liners like, “Why don’t you make like a tree, and get out of here!”

1.) Johnny Lawrence – The Karate Kid (1984)/Greg Tolan – Just One of the Guys (1985)/Chas Osborn – Back to School (1986)

Played by: William Zabka

At last we come to it…the quintessential 80’s bully. Who else could capture the #1 douchebag of all-time spot but the king of the bullies himself, Mr. William Zabka? He is the icon; the prototype for which all future douchebags were based upon. When it comes to being an insufferable prick, Zabka broke the mold, ladies and gentlemen.

The great Zabka has the distinction of playing an epic asshole in not one, not two, but THREE consecutive classic 80’s films. Hell, he even managed to inject National Lampoon’s European Vacation with some epic dickery, using his precious few minutes of screentime as Audrey’s boyfriend to their full potential by telling her how fat she was right in front of her parents at dinnertime. Classy.

Whether he was brutally kicking the ever-loving shit out of Daniel LaRusso on the beach, or performing the “pussy toss for distance” on a girl disguised as a guy for an undercover news report, Zabka did it all with that perfectly feathered blonde coiffure and a smug smirk on his face that made you instantly want to smash his mouth in with a ball-peen hammer dipped in battery acid.

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About Author

Jeff Carter

Jeff is the defining voice of his generation. Sadly, that generation exists only in an alternate dimension where George Lucas became supreme overlord of the Earth in 1979 and replaced every television broadcast and theatrical film on the planet with Star Wars and Godzilla movies. In this dimension, he’s just a guy from New England who likes writing snarky things about superheroes, monsters, and robots.

  • Mark Mallarde

    What about Matt Dillon from My Bodyguard, the role that launched his career?

  • Bret Salowitz

    What about Buddy from 3 o’clock high?