When you’re the leader of a gang, whether it’s a “band of thieves” or a notorious criminal syndicate, you have to have a couple things. Respect, a chick who’s hesitantly understanding or accepting of your way of life, and most importantly..you gotta have a right hand man. A “second in command” is one of the most important features of being a leader of a group, regardless of affiliation. Having a right hand man is wonderful. He can whack a couple of “loose ends” if you’re a crime boss with a busy schedule. You can trust him to watch over your loved one if you get caught in a jam or get you outa that jam. They pretty much will do all of the dirty, busy, and leg work while you get credit for a job well done. It’s perfect. It’s like having a best friend who’s also your assistant, secretary, driver, body guard, wingman, robot, and personal hitman.
So today, we run down a list of some of the coolest “right hands” in cinema. Because, if your number 2 isn’t cool, then you’re doing it wrong.
Honorable Mention: Lee Christmas – The Expendables/The Expendables 2
The Expendables 2 hits theaters this week, but that’s not why Jason Statham’s Lee Christmas makes the list. He makes the list because that’s motherf*****g Jason Statham. The man takes off his shirt and kills at will like Pac-Man on power pellets. He normally doesn’t play second fiddle these days because he’s proven himself to be a pretty badass one man ass kicking army. That’s why if you’re fortunate enough to have him as your second in command in your team of mercenaries, you’re probably not gonna lose too many gun, knife, or fist fights against a gang of foreign rebel soldiers. It’s almost unfair. It’s like having Michael Jordan as your 6th man and you’re the ’88 Lakers.
Mr. Christmas interrupts a basketball game with his punching and kicking.
11. Donny Donnowitz aka The Bear Jew – Inglourious Basterds
Somewhere on this site, I believe my partner, Johnny Compton wrote that Eli Roth has one of those faces you’d like to punch. But I don’t think he’d say the same about Inglourious Basterds‘ Donny Donnowitz. At least not to his punchable face. Not only does Mr. Donnowitz have a confusingly scary nickname in “The Bear Jew”, but his method is even more terrifying. If you’re not on his good side, he’s known for Babe Ruthing your head until he gets tired or until you tell him what he wants to know. With a Boston basket case like that on your squad, you pretty much don’t have to worry about anybody short of The Decepticons or Meta World Peace really giving you any shit.
Donnowitz “obliges” a German prisoner.
10. Captain – 300
300might be the most definitive “guys movie” of the last decade. And I don’t mean because there’s lotsa ripped guys in it or because we wanna see lotsa ripped guys. But because, it’s a movie about a the most badass dudes in the history of the world. I mean really, it’s a movie about 300 of the most badass guys you’d never wanna find yourself in a outdoor sword and spear fight with. Their leader, King Leonidas, was hardcore enough to not mess with as was most of his high ranking soldiers. I mean anybody who can laugh while enemy arrows rain down upon you, is a guy you want on your side. But his number #2, Captain, was quietly The Hulk of that army. Don’t let his pretty eyes fool you. He’ll kill you in the name of his leader and for his country. And probably just for fun, too.
The Captain goes apeshit over the death of his son and singlehandedly kills more Persians than curiosity.
9. Chewbacca – The Star Wars Trilogy
I think I’d be doing myself and you, readers, a disservice if I didn’t include one of the most iconic “right hands” in science fiction, cinema, and pop culture history. No, I’m not talking about Spock. What did Spock ever do that was cool, huh? Feel human emotions? Pfft. I’m talking about Chewbacca, 2nd in command of The Millenium Falcon. The Wookie with a Charles Bronson mustache. He was just down for his boy Han no matter what like Drake and Lil Wayne. Only, Chewie wouldn’t get his ass kicked by Chris Brown. He’d tear Breezy’s arms off and reattach em to his good friend 3PO.
Oh I don’t know..being in the original Star Wars movies? That cool enough for you?
8. Michael Sullivan -Road to Perdition
Paul Newman is a pretty cool, old school cat. He’s a cinema legend who always played these confident leading men. In Road to Perdition he played the head of a crime family and Tom Hanks was his right hand hitman. Hanks’ Michael Sullivan saw Newman’s John Rooney like a father figure and would’ve done anything he asked. Sullivan was so smooth at the hitman game, too. He could go to work, killing Rooney’s enemies from 8-5 and be home in time for dinner and pretty much hang up his trench coat, his fedora, and hand his Tommy Gun to his wife for her to shine up later.
And it’s not uncommon, in movies, for a leader of some sort of association to turn on his “best guy” to save his own ass. But, Michael Sullivan isn’t the type to let that type of shit slide. Especially, when his so called “father figure” is responsible for the death of his wife, child, and gave the OK to have him taken out, too. Not sure why Mr. Rooney thought his best hitman would be so easy to kill.
“We gotta kill our best killer. Oh I know…call that photographer.”
The #1 gets #2′d on in cool ass gangster fashion.
7. Semmi – Coming To America
Normally, when we think of “right hand man”, we associate it with a gang or army or something to that sort. This time, our “right hand man” is more of a future King and his best friend who has to do what you say, but would probably do it anyway. It’s an Oprah and Gayle type situation. Semmi was Prince Akeem’s #2. He’s that friend that will cover for you and lie to your parents about your whereabouts, invoke positive thoughts upon you to keep you encouraged, shell out a couple mil to buy you a tennis court for your birthday, or even settle for a 5 or 6 just so you can get the hottest girl in the entire party. I mean, most likely, a 5 or 6 is the best he could do anyway. But, you see where I’m getting at. It’s kinda hard to pull 8′s and 9′s when you look like a Black Carol Burnett.