For the vast majority of people currently living on Earth, the only butlers anyone has seen have been in movies. Ask any fan of film, and there's a good chance they can name at least one famous butler, with characters like Alfred Pennyworth from Batman, Wadsworth from Clue, Delbert Grady from The Shining, or even Riff Raff from The Rocky Horror Picture Show coming to mind. It's a sad truth that hardly any of us would ever be in a situation where a butler might come into our lives, but if you could have one from any movie, who would it be?
There are plenty to choose from, but identifying the best butlers from more than a century of movies is no easy task. For the purposes of this list, a butler is anyone who serves an estate or family but may or may not be the only servant in that estate. It's necessary to make that distinction, seeing as a butler is the head of staff, and they typically aren't the sole employee in an estate. The aforementioned Pennyworth is a perfect example of this, and there aren't many people who wouldn't immediately identify him as a butler.
Check out the movie butlers in the list below, and don't forget to vote for the butlers you would love to serve your estate!
- Photo: Warner Bros.
Who They Serve: The Wayne family, formerly Thomas and Martha Wayne; presently, Bruce Wayne and whichever teenage boy he has running around in tights with him at the time.
Notable Skills: Providing an alibi when a beautiful woman comes calling; cooking and serving meals; cleaning; and maintaining the vast riches of Wayne Manor and the Batcave.
Greatest Trial: Raising Bruce as the boy's surrogate parent after Bruce's parents were slain, which was followed by the boy's obsession with vengeance against anyone who breaks the law. Alfred has assisted Master Bruce through his training, his evolution into Batman, and his long career fighting wrongdoers in Gotham City.Are they good at their job?
- Photo: United Artists Releasing
Who They Serve: The Addams family
Notable Skills: Serving food, escorting people off the premises, ensuring the children are safe, and completing other tasks typical of a servant in his position.
Greatest Trial: The man typically only grunts instead of using actual words, so his greatest trial is probably best summed up in one word: communication. Though, the Addams family doesn't appear to have trouble understanding him.Are they good at their job?
- Photo: Paramount Pictures
Who They Serve: Mr. Boddy
Notable Skills: Summarizing plots involving a slaying, blackmailing guests, and causing something of a continuous state of alarm. He also serves food and does the typical tasks of a butler.
Greatest Trial: Clue has several endings, and depending on which ones we're talking about, Wadsworth is either a hero, or he's the blackmailing villain. The hero version's greatest trial is surviving the night and determining who offed Mr. Boddy, while the villain version's greatest trial is trying to get away with a slaying. Oh, and he also has to hide his true identity in all versions.Are they good at their job?
- Photo: Agent Carter/ABC
Who They Serve: Howard Stark originally, and then it was emulated as an artificial intelligence program named in honor of the deceased butler. The AI J.A.R.V.I.S. served Tony Stark until he was transformed into the android Vision.
Notable Skills: The human known as Jarvis possessed the skills necessary to work as a valet and butler for the Stark family. His AI counterpart initially ran Tony's simulations, did his calculations, and worked as a personal assistant; when it comes time for Tony's Iron Man armor to go online, J.A.R.V.I.S. gets downloaded into the suit to serve as its operating system.
Greatest Trial: Fighting the Ultron entity, which attempts to simulate his programming prior to wiping him out.Are they good at their job?