Most cartoons may be made for kids, but there is no denying the fact that some cartoon characters can be complete assholes
Adventure Time is a show FILLED with jerks. Their levels of jerkassery range from "completely evil jerkass" to "sympathetic Jerkass Woobie." The most obvious in the former category are Magic Man, Xergiok, and the Tree Witch. Magic Man inflicts Body Horror galore on innocent people and turns a bird inside-out, Xergiok spends most of his time SPANKING his subjects, and the Tree Witch actually tries to suck the protagonist Jake into her ass. (Makes Just as Much Sense in Context). The Ice King and Lemongrab are very sympathetic characters thanks to their mental/emotional problems, but they're still jerks. The Ice King is senile and actually a decent guy, but seriously; he NEEDS to stop kidnapping princesses. That's just impolite. And Lemongrab isn't evil—just maladjusted, but he doesn't empathize with people easily, and he sends everybody to the dungeon for a million years.
However, recent episodes have made the Ice King even more sympathetic. Major Adventure Time spoilers ahead! The crown he wears is destroying his memory and his sanity. Before he became the Ice King, he was an antiques dealer named Simon Petrikov. Due to his deepening insanity, the love of his life, a woman named Betty, left him. The only thing he kinda-sorta remembers about her is his nickname for her: Princess.
Oddly enough, the other Jerkasses have been developed further as well. Upon his banishment and losing his eyes, Xergiok reinvented himself and became a peace-loving friend of the birds. He briefly went back to his old, spanking ways before realizing that his bird friends were being hurt in the process. Xergiok ultimately decided to stay on the side of good. Magic Man, while still a jerkass, apparently went evil after losing the love of his life. Lemongrab redeemed himself after Bubblegum created Lemongrab 2, finally having someone who understood him. Then both Lemongrabs tried to use the Candy Kingdom to create more lemon people. After that mess cleared up, it looked like all the lemon people would stay on the straight and narrow... before Lemongrab 1 became more and more corrupt until he goes full on dictator on the lemon people. Even Lemongrab 2 ends up being eaten alive.
The titular Allen in Allen Gregory is heavy on this. He displays narcissism in spades, disregards his sister's emotions and well being, puts his needs and wants ahead of others, and completely disrespects his father's life partner for no apparent reason. Allen is only a 7 year old boy! It also doesn't help that Allen's father displays the exact same behavior to his life partner and his daughter. Because he is the main protagonist, this lead to Designated Hero.
In American Dad!, Stan Smith is a huge jerkass right from the get-go. Among Stan's crueler schemes include framing his wife for murder so she wouldn't tell him "I told you so", concocting an elaborate revenge plan against a car salesman, which results in the family almost going broke (and Hayley being forced into prostitution to get money for them) and evicting the entirety of the neighborhood so they wouldn't make fun of him.
Really though, it may have been a good thing for Stan to be a humongous jerkass from the beginning. Although he has topped himself in bastardy, he has also had numerous actions and development which make him seem a much better person than he once appeared, despite the continued jerkiness. He had nowhere to go but up.
A perfect illustration of Roger's attitude comes in "Don't Look a Smith Horse in the Mouth". We see Roger loading up on some random food item/condiment, Francine admonishes him for being wasteful, and Roger deflects the issue by telling Francine something Stan did that pisses her off — and then takes one bite of the wasteful food and promptly throws it on the floor. This happens three or four times this same episode; is it any wonder that Stan, when his mind is put into a horse's body, takes the opportunity to give Roger a solid kick to the face?
Steve's Japanese friend Toshi, to a lesser extent than some of the others on this show. He's always insulting Steve to his face, but is too cowardly to say it in a language Steve can actually understand, so he automatically assumes he's complimenting him. Toshi is shown to understand English perfectly (and even spoke it on two occasions), but never uses it.
Toshi's mom: What? Why are you speaking Japanese? I don't even speak Japanese.
Many one-off villains were huge jerks, so the Warners, Slappy Squirrel, and the writers could do whatever they wanted without being or feeling like the villains. Daniel Boone in "Branimaniacs" goes to Wile E Coyote lengths to evict Slappy from her tree in order to cut it down for the front door of a log cabin. "Daniel Boone was a great big jerk, yeees, a stupid jeeerk! He had another dumb plan that more than likely wouldn't work."
Sterling Archer from Archer is a perfect example of this, as he is completely unrepentant, self-centered and rude to every other character on the show.
He definitely has a Freudian Excuse. Malory Archer's jerkass tendencies range from enjoying watching her son be electrocuted in the pilot, to being proud that six pigmies died cutting down an endangered tree to make her a fancy coffee table. Oh, and she also murdered a cleaning crew for forming a union.
Mallory (after an elevator audibly crashes): How's that for bread and roses?
D.W. from Arthur. Such a big jerk that she got punched by Arthur in one episode.
Miranda from As Told by Ginger. While her friend Courtney genuinely means well, Miranda goes out of her way to lure the protagonist and her friends into embarrassing, horrible situations, and to steal the protagonist's love interests for herself seemingly just to spite her. However, Mipsy is even worse. Not only does she put on a pretense of politeness when Miranda doesn't, she has actively slandered other people before, even knowing they would get suspension or expulsion.
Detective Bullock from Batman: The Animated Series seemed rough around the edges, and his main claim to fame was merely distrusting Batman. Then he got his Day in the Limelight and spent it proving that he was nothing short of an asshole. A reporter offered him help figuring out who tried to kill him, but had work to do and asked him to wait a half hour before she showed him whatever he needed to see. Bullock decides to break into her office and dig through the files like a burglar instead of just waiting like he agreed to. It's even because of his obnoxious behaviour (and not as he thought, by simply being a cop) that his life gets targeted ( his landlord couldn't stand him anymore) but he gains some sympathy by being genuinely thankful to Batman for saving his life despite his strong dislike for him. So yeah, it's hard to earn his respect but if you do, he's at least tolerable: just ask Montoya, Gordon and his daughter who he is downright nice to.
Both Beavis and Butt-Head qualify. Especially Butt-Head, due to his consistent tormenting and abuse of Beavis.
And then there are a few characters that are in this category: Coach Buzzcut, Todd, Muddy and Dallas Grimes, Principal McVicker, the Crazy Old Farmer, and Harry Sachz.
In the animated pilot episode based off of the Bubsy video game series, the title character is an arrogant, obnoxious jerk who nearly brings about the end of the world through his carelessness. In the games, he is merely a wisecracking do-gooder.
Reggie Bullnerd and Mr. Wilter from ChalkZone. The former is a bully who picks on Rudy and always tries to steal his chalk, while the latter is a no-nonsense Sadist Teacher who hates his students showing creative expression.
Code Monkeys has not just one, but three jerkasses in the forms of Dave, Todd and Mr. Larrity. Dave is a messy, rude, irresponsible pervert who's constantly stoned and it's a real wonder that Jerry is still willing to associate himself with the guy. Todd is a mixture between a jerkass and Small Name, Big Ego. Mr. Larrity is a maniacal, money-hungry, nutjob who would think nothing of selling his own employees to further his own twisted ambitions.
Almost every character from that show can be one. Specific villains like Mad Dog, Katz, Eustace's mother and brother, The Precious Lovable Adorable Ducking, and Di Lung.
The doctor from the final episode was the worst of them all.
In Cow and Chicken, if you pay attention to what Chicken dose most of the time, he is quite a jerkass, he even once refused to take a a bath and caused his family a lot of discomfort from not being able to use what is apparently their only bathroom, grinning as he sits and lays back listening to their cries to hurry up. (When was the last time you had to really really really need to use the bathroom and were a bit away from one? It's really a horrible feeling.)
The quintessential Jerk Jock Dash Baxter from Danny Phantom. His preferred hobby is harassing Danny, and he often goes out of his way to make Danny's life hell.
Dan from Dan Vs. Sometimes the targets of his vengeance are even worse jerks, so much so that Dan looks heroic in comparison, but other times, they're innocent people who accidentally set him off, and he makes no distinction between the two.
And other characters also enter: Ms. Li, Anthony De Martino, Sandi and Tommy Sherman.
Quinn becomes this sometimes, but limited.
Jake's father ("Mad Dog") is the worst one.
The titular character from Duck Dodgers is a major jerk, aided by the fact that he's "played by Daffy Duck". Moments of jerkassery include:
In the episode "The Queen is Wild", the Martian Queen, jilted by Dodgers on what was to be their wedding night, and now seeking her vengeance, has Dodgers's damaged ship in her sights and could finish him off in that instant. However, she still has feelings for him, and hesitates. Rather than use this affection to mend fences, Dodgers has his ship swing around and cripple hers.
In another episode, Dodgers is said to have sold the Cadet's sister to a sausage factory.
He attempted to drag The Cadet with him on his vacation in "The Wrath of Canasta". The only thing that spares the Cadet is a degree of Genre Savvy, as he sent along a robot duplicate of himself and went to the beach instead.
In the episode "The Green Loontern", we see him using the Cadet on his day off as a chore-monkey, telling him that it's "extra credit" to promote him to "Stooge, or maybe even Lackey". To be fair, though, Dodgers's own boss, I.Q. Hi, is seen doing the exact same thing later in the episode.
After responding to a distress call that he had initially ignored in "Big Bad Bug Mamas", Dodgers indiscriminately opens fire on the local lifeforms, believing them to be the invaders, freezing and incapacitating many of them, especially, "women, children, the elderly, and the infirmed." He then runs off to fraternize with the actual invaders, who, at the time, resembled blue-skinned shapely women (but were in reality a group of carnivorous insectoid beasts.)
Dumps the Queen of Mars on the eve of their wedding after being tricked by his arch-enemy into thinking that as king, his sole duties would be to run the methane farms of Uranus, rather than checking and confirming with the Queen. So great is his ego, he decides to break up with her by telling her that his supposed affections for her were all part of a ruse to learn Mars' secrets.
He's not just a jerk, Dodgers is also an idiot. In one episode, the Martians literally steal Dodgers' brain to analyze it and figure out how could somebody so stupid escape them time and time again. They replace his brain with a basic, slapped-together artificial intelligence...and honestly, Dodgers is no different. Heck, he's even a little smarter now.
Roger Klotz in both the Nickelodeon and Disney versions of Doug.
Roger started out as a stock bully, but by the end of the Nickelodeon series he seemed to be one of Doug's friends, albeit a selfish and irritating friend. Doug's narration acknowledges this in the episode where Roger is bullied by newcomer Percy Femur: "Roger may be annoying, but Mr. Bone's nephew was just plain mean."
For instance, Roger helped organize a surprise party for Doug, and in the graduation episode he and Doug have a heart-to-heart about their anxiety over leaving elementary school.
Speaking of Mr. Bone, he also fits this trope but mostly because he often has deal with the student body since Principal Buttsavitch is rarely seen.
The entire cast of Drawn Together has jerkass tendencies, especially Captain Hero and Clara. That being said, the characters are really no worse than the reality television 'stars' they parody.
Eric, from the Dungeons & Dragons animated series, spent most of the series wavering between jerkass and Jerk with a Heart of Gold. He frequently got the team into trouble through his whining and attempts to become the leader. He once left them entirely to marry a beautiful queen, though he came back eventually... but only after learning his bride-to-be was really a hideous monster in disguise. At the same time, he was the only character to successfully guilt trip Dungeon Master over his gratuitously enigmatic ways, and at some point he was fully ready to make an Heroic Sacrifice to send his friends home and battle Venger.
As has been pointed out elsewhere, Eric was also the victim of parental watchdogs who, at the time, believed that the best lesson to teach children was that The Complainer Is Always Wrong. Thus, in spite of the fact that Eric was reacting as any NORMAL person would to being trapped in a homicidal fairy-tale world run by a dwarf with a Yoda complex, and, in fact, was often the only one making any SANE arguments about their situation, he was turned from being the voice of sanity to the Butt Monkey of the show.
While the show is more heartfelt than its sister show, The Cleveland Show still has its fair share of jerks. Rallo is a jerk to his older brother, Cleveland Jr., often tormenting him occasionally. Cleveland, while not as bad as Peter or Stan, has acted like more of a self-serving jerk in this show. Roberta is a Bratty Teenage Daughter.
Eddy from Ed, Edd n Eddy is arrogant, scams his peers, is full of himself and likes to think that he's better than everyone else on the show, and fans wonder why him and his friends get the living shit beaten out of them sometimes.
And what's worse is that his big brother is even a bigger Jerkass then he is, which makes you think that it might be hereditary.
It is revealed in The Movie that Eddy's jerkish behavior is all just a Jerkass Façade since he thought that acting like his brother would make him look cool to all the other kids. In the end Eddy realizes that being a jerkass was what was keeping him from being popular and tearfully laments that he'll never learn his lesson. Cue the one of the show's only, and most triumphant, Crowning Moment of Heartwarming.
Though Eddy has a Freudian Excuse, Kevin is one through and through. in one episode he finds out Eddy's middle name after finding his wallet and threatens to tell the other kids, but promises to not tell if Eddy does everything he says. Eddy does so. Kevin tells them anyway, and his "excuse" is "Oops! I forgot!"
One could argue Kevin to lean into Knight Templar / He Who Fights Monsters territory, after being harassed by the Eds for so long he has came to believe they are always up to no good and so up for punishment. In "See No Ed" he becomes suspicious after the Eds disappear for an extended period, eventually becoming a paranoid wreck expectant of them reappearing to scam him at every turn. When he sees Eddy's own reasons for his behavior, he lightens up.
Ed's little sister Sarah is a violent, manipulative Bratty Half-Pint that frequently abuses her brother physically and verbally on a scale only slightly lower than what Eddy suffers from his brother.
By extension, Sarah and Ed's parents qualify too, as it's implied that they allow Sarah to bully Ed.
The Kankers also qualify as jerks, since they, like the kids love to bully and force-kiss the Eds and rarely get punished for their actions.
In The Fairly OddParents, a vast majority of episode plots, especially in the later seasons, are derived from Timmy and Cosmo's ridiculously portrayed jerkass tendencies in conjunction with the two perpetually holding the Idiot Ball.
Vicky also counts. She's a mean, evil babysitter who only acts nice around adults. She takes sadistic pleasure into torturing Timmy and her little sisterTootie. Her bullying is so bad that Timmy was declared the most miserable kid on Earth. Her Freudian Excuse doesn't cut it either.
Tad and Chad, the two popular guys, always pick on people who aren't like them.
There's also Cupid.
Let's put this straight: almost EVERY CHARACTER FROM FAMILY GUY (at least since the show came back) has been, at one time, self-centered, nasty, snarky, and insane. Some notable examples:
Peter Griffin. However, he actually started out as a Jerk with a Heart of Gold who often made stupid and selfish decisions, yet he would've done anything for his kids that he believed was good for them, especially Meg. After the show was revived, however, he transformed into an abusive asshat who openly hates Meg for no reason, both physically and verbally abusing her. He also puts his other family members in danger without caring what would happen to them, such as when he jumped out of their car to watch a movie in a van leading to the rest of the family's near death, and then proceeds to admonish Lois when she points out how stupid and selfish he is. While the writers appeared to shift him back slightly to his earlier persona during Seasons 8 and 10, when Meg finally tossed their jerkass behavior back into his and Lois's face (in "Seahorse Seashell Party"), he was able to shake off all of Meg's accusations that he was a douche to everybody, and unlike Lois, has no remorse for any of his jerkass behavior. What a low-life.
Speaking of Lois, during the recent seasons Lois has had Flanderization moments that have degraded her from a loving mother and wife to acting like an abusive shrew, especially towards Meg and Peter. This is most notable in "Stew-Roids", where after listen to Meg cry over the party being held downstairs, she gives up, tosses her a Sylvia Plath novel and a bottle of Ambien, stating "Whatever happens, happens". That's right: she could care less if her own daughter died.
Connie, an Alpha Bitch character from Meg's school is an absolute bitch to Meg, and continues to bully her even after Meg showed her the cuts she deliberately gave herself as a result of Connie's cruel mistreatment towards her. To balance things out however, she also falls victim to a rather Disproportionate Retribution by another Jerkass character in the majority of her appearances (her bullying seems kinda low-scale when you consider she has been brutally beaten twice over, framed for pedophilia by Stewie and sexually harassed by both Peter and Quagmire).
Brian. Much like Peter and Lois, he became one through Flanderization. He has an ego the size of Texas, bashes everything that does not agree with him, told Meg that there is no God because she does not have a good life, and is a Know-Nothing Know-It-All that makes everybody that seems to have a lower IQ look like idiots. Quagmire's "Reason You Suck" Speech is a perfect description of how his character gradually degenerated:
"You are the worst person I know. You constantly hit on your best friend's wife; the man pays for your food and rescued you from certain death and this is how you repay him? And to add insult to injury, you defecate all over his yard. (getting angrier) And you're such a sponge. You pay for nothing. You're always like. "Ooh, I'll get you later," but later never comes. And what really bothers me is you pretend that you're this deep guy that loves women for their souls, but all you do is date bimbos. Yeah, I date women for their bodies, but at least I'm honest about it! I don't buy them a copy of Catcher in the Rye and then lecture them with some seventh-grade interpretation about how Holden Caulfield is a profound intellectual. He wasn't. He was a SPOILED BRAT! And that's why you like him so much: he's YOU! GOD, you're pretentious! (brimming with indignation) And you delude yourself by thinking you're a great writer, even though you're terrible. You know, I shoulda known Cheryl Tiegs didn't write me that note. She woulda known there's no "A" in the word "definite!" And what I think I hate most about you is your textbook liberal agenda. How we should (mockingly) "Legalize Pot, maaan..." How big business is crushing the underclass; how homelessness is the biggest tragedy in America. Well what have YOU done to help?! I work down at the soup kitchen, Brian... never seen YOU down there! You wanna help? GRAB A LADLE! And by the way, driving a Prius does not make you Jesus Christ. Oh, WAIT! You don't believe in Jesus Christ, or any religion for that matter, because (mockingly) "religion is for idiots." Well who the HELL are YOU to talk down to anyone?! You failed college TWICE, which isn't nearly as bad as your failure as a father — how's that son of yours you never see? But you know what? I could forgive all of that... all of it... if you weren't such a BORE. That's the worst of it, Brian. You're just a big, sad, alcoholic BORE. Well, see ya later, Brian. Thanks for the fucking steak!"
Though that speech made Quagmire sound like a hypocrite given that he's done far worse things than Brian ever has, most of the time he's a heartless sex hound who will do anything to take advantage of almost any woman and he's abandoned who knows how many kids. Also sometimes his own hatred for Brian crosses over into Disproportionate Retribution, like when he beat up Brian for sleeping with his transgender father (something which Brian was completely unaware of).
Carter is one of the biggest Jerks in the show. He has enslaved his employees (especially the African-American ones), is cruel to Peter (even though, as said above, it's not like he does not deserve it time and again), and acts horribly to his own daughter, Lois (which may have had an impact on Lois turning into a jerk in later seasons) in addition to abandoning his son Patrick after he had a nervous breakdown. He even cured cancer and refused to release it to the public, even after Lois made an emotional speech about the ethical ramifications. He is essentially a richer, white-collar version of Peter.
Jeff Fecalman from "Screams Of Silence: The Story of Brenda Q" manages to make all of those above seem freaking mild by comparison. He is what happens if the writers took Peter seriously: he beats his girlfriend (Brenda, Quagmire's sister) up constantly, and it can be assumed that he commits worse abuse on a regular basis. What makes this shocking is that Jeff is the only asshole in the show to be taken dead seriously and he winds up getting Killed Off for Real.
Chris is starting to turn into one. He is more cynical and a Deadpan Snarker and often joins Peter and Lois when it comes to abusing Meg.
Bloo from Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends becomes a bigger jerk each week, though he seemed to be leveling off at the end. However, in a subversion, it is explained that the others (or at least, the management) only put up with this because they have an obligation to, and are frequently glad to be rid of him. In the official comic-strips, he's at least a bit less jerky and more lovable in general. As in the pilot TV-movie. The TV movie (where Wilt is trying to find his original creator) implies that the "negative" aspects of the imaginary friends are an unconscious Secret Test of Character for their kids: Wilt's Extreme Doormat-ness encouraged his boy to be a better sportsman (I think) while Eduardo's meekness made his girl - a future policewoman who dreamed him up to be her protector - be more courageous. Thus, Bloo's Jerkassness shows Mac how not to treat his friends everybody.
There's also Mac's older brother Terrance, Dutchess, Jackie Khones, and Mr. Herriman.
Bender from Futurama. In "A Pharaoh to Remember", Bender, Leela and Fry are trapped on a ancient Egyptian planet where Bender encourages the overseers to whip the slaves (which include Leela and Fry) more and work them harder. This goes on to where he starts ordering people worked to death to construct a monument to himself. Bender's callousness reached such extremes at times it led even the Robot Devil himself to be taken aback.
Zapp Brannigan. He sends waves after waves of his men to their deaths, often sits back whilst doing so, and is a sexist pig who has manipulated women into bed with him.
The Professor himself agrees when Fry describes him as a "senile, amoral crackpot". He gleefully sends the crew to very dangerous missions (many of his previous employees died because of this). The Sting shows he's sent multiple crews on the same mission and each time they died.
Leo and Inez Wong.
Pete is one on Goof Troop. His hobbies include screwing over his neighbor—including taking credit for things his neighbor did and getting his neighbor in trouble for things he did—taking away everything he can get his hands on from all the people around him, acting like he's ungrateful for his wife whether he is or not, being rude and insulting to everyone except usually his daughter and sometimes his wife, scamming people out of their money at his Honest John's Dealership, lying to people in order to get them to do his bidding, being a Hypocrite, and deliberately mistreating his son in myriad ways including but not limited to treating him (and occasionally his friend, too) like a slave. This is what is done with his character in a series where the setting means he can't be a "villain" in the traditional sense.
Murdoc Niccals of Gorillaz. Among other bad habits, he thinks it's appropriate to get someone to join your band by kidnapping them.
The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy: Mandy is an outright Villain Protagonist who constantly belittles Billy and Grim, her supposed "best friends," and treats them like her slaves. In one episode, where Billy and Grim put the cursed Mask of the Beast on her in an attempt to force her to be nice to them, it's shown that even trying to do the simplest of nice things for someone is nearly impossible for Mandy, to the extent that she finds it physically difficult just to say "please."
Many characters of King of the Hill, most notably Hank's racist Laotian neighbor, Khan, who just wants to show up Hank, and Hank's racist, misogynist father, Cotton, who outright refused to tell his son he loved him. Even on his deathbed. To be fair to Khan, there are times that he shows that he isn't a complete Jerkass. Cotton is certainly the worse one. Kahn is also revealed to be bipolar, making him more of a Jerkass Woobie.
Peggy believes herself to be superior to everyone she knows in every way, and uses it as an excuse to talk down to, insult and generally be a total dick to everyone around her. Almost everyone she meets outside the main cast quickly grow to dislike her and within the main cast it is heavily implied, if not outright stated, that they don't like her and only associate with her due to living right by her or by proxy of Hank. Dale has bluntly stated he hates her, Bill is in love with her (he is shown to have masochistic tendencies), and Boomhauer is never actually shown speaking to her. When involved in a competition that she will likely lose, rather than admit defeat she will almost always make sure that everyone loses (regardless of how unlikely she is to win from the get go) or lie, back stab, blackmail or use any other unethical or illegal means to give herself the win.
"Master of Puppets" has, after they accidentally forgot to pick up Bobby on date night, Peggy making a special breakfast for Bobby in a blatant bribe and shifts the blame towards Hank. Showing that when as a group she's at fault, Peggy has no qualms about downplaying her own involvement while emphasizing her partners'. To be fair though, Hank had expected the whole thing to blow over the next morning simply because they apologized to Bobby. When we see Bobby the next morning, before Peggy gives him his breakfast, it's obvious everything was not better. Peggy was a jerkass for bribing Bobby, but Hank was a jerkass for thinking a simple apology would fix leaving Bobby stranded in a parking lot.
Dale also counts for his belligerent heckling of his friends, among other things.
Hank has his moments of being a jerkass. Particularly when he's confronted by things he doesn't understand (which is quite a large list). Or when Bobby has hobbies and interests that he doesn't agree with (which tends to overlap with the 'things he doesn't understand' list).
Michigan J. Frog has been a Jerkass for his entire existence, screwing around with people by singing and dancing, and then making them look crazy by acting like a normal frog when they try to get other people to see it. Later on, his jerkass tendencies got even stronger in Tiny Toon Adventures, where he taunts (in song) a turtle trying to get away from Elmyra, and as mascot for The WB, where, in early promos, he'd straight up insult the viewers while praising the WB as an escape from their crappy lives. And he's hilarious.
Yosemite Sam. He was created largely to get the audience to root for Bugs.
Jamie in Megas XLR, who has all of two Pet the Dog moments in the entire series. It is often implied that he brings absolutely nothing to the table in his friendship with Coop, and that he has no skills of his own, yet despite that he is a jerk with a superiority complex who insults his comrades, hits on women, and schemes for his own profit.
Clay from Moral Orel, the main character Orel's father, who is initially viewed (at least in Orel's eyes) in a sympathetic (or at least tolerable) light, but is ultimately a pathetic, blundering, selfish jackass who even crosses the Moral Event Horizon at one point or another.
His "crowning moment" of jerkassery and Moral Event Horizon was when he drunkenly shot Orel on a hunting trip and proceeded to blame it on Orel with a series of unconnected lies. He stood there insulting Orel to bring him down, ending with him starting to walk away, turning around and saying "And I'm GLAD I shot you!".
Ratty from Mr. Bogus combines this trope with You Dirty Rat. Could might as well be Justified, since he's always trying to one up Bogus with little to no success and more often than not will treat his sidekick Mole like dirt.
There were times on Muppet Babies when Skeeter could become a huge jerkass rival to Piggy. Two big examples are when she gleefully watches Piggy get blamed for a snack theft she and brother Scooter actually did, and when the group puts on a performance of "Snow White" and she forces Piggy to be the Evil Queen while she plays Snow White (which includes getting a kiss from Kermit, no less).
My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic has had quite a bit of jerkasses so far. Gilda, The Great and Powerful Trixie (formerly), Silver Spoon and Diamond Tiara (especially the latter), Prince Blueblood, Discord and the Flim-Flam brothers.
Fluttershy: Hey, Twilight! What's soaking wet and clueless? Twilight Sparkle: Fluttershy, I've just about had enough— (Fluttershy dumps a bucket of water on Twilight's head) Fluttershy: Your FACE! (Fluttershy slams the bucket on Twilight's head)
Fluttershy gets another turn as this in 'Putting Your Hoof Down', where she reduces Pinkie Pie and Rarity to tears in a blind of rage. Speaking of that episode, Boxxy Brown the cherry salespony is also one. He constantly jacks up the price of a cherry to ludicrous degrees after Fluttershy says how much she needs one, and immediately sells it to another pony for a much lower price, and mocks Fluttershy about it.
Discord, of the Jerkass Gods variety, being the malevolent spirit of chaos, loves to corrupt other ponies for sheer entertainment. And he's hilarious too.
Being an expy of Q (even being played by the same actor) Discord veers into Affably Evil.
As of Season 3, Discord has been officially reformed. However, he still seems every bit the jerkass. The only reason he unfreezes Applejack's farm is for Fluttershy's sake (Rather than because it's the right thing to do, or to save the Apple family), and even in the end he promises to only use his magic for good, but then mumbles "Most of the time..."
The Flim-Flam brothers, traveling sales ponies nonpareil.
Possible YMMV but Bon-Bon seems to be a bit of a jerkass. Whether she's avenging herself on Apple Bloom for an attempted scam by demanding every apple from the stand for free, pretending not to know Rarity because she's not the now-famous Fluttershy, or bullying the latter like many others at times. she can be really unpleasant though most of Bon-Bon's actions were either speculations or were justified.
The teenage dragons from Dragon Quest.
Trixie initially was a jerk flank during 'Boast Busters' and the majority of 'Magic Duel'. An egotistical, showboating narcissist, she was the Shadow Archetype of Twilight Sparkle,Rarity, and RainbowDash. However, Magic Duel's epilogue showed a redeemed Trixie almost renouncing her former ways...
Then she promptly referred to herself as "The Great and Apologetic Trixie", showing she's still got Jerkass tendencies.
In 9, 1 and 8 are both this. 1 is a commanding coward who sends 2 to his death because he is old and weak, while 8 follows his every whim and brutishly mistreats the others, particularly 9. Both are redeemed somewhat: 8, by having the funniest scene in the movie, by getting "high" by putting a magnet to his head, and 1, more seriously, in a Heroic Sacrifice to save 9 and help destroy the Fabricator. Redemption Equals Death in both cases.
Peanuts: Lucy Van Pelt could be one of the pioneers of this trope as far as western animation is concerned. She truly believes that the world is ending any time Charlie Brown actually does something right. One of her worst acts is from "It's Your First Kiss Charlie Brown" near the middle during their football game they have to score a field goal in order to win the game and Charlie Brown begs her not to pull away the football which she had been doing throughout the game, she promises she won't and just as he's about to she pulls it away like usual costing them the game, later at the after party she mocks and yells at Charlie Brown like nearly everyone else even though the entire thing was HER FAULT in the first place.
And who gave Charlie Brown a bunch of rocks one Halloween when the gang went out trick-or-treating?
Boyd from Pelswick, a bully who goes out of his way to pick on the paraplegic protagonist, even resorting to spying on him to catch him at something embarrassing for material. He has what appears to be an Even Evil Has Standards that prevents him from attacking Pelswick physically, but this embodies the same condescension he doesn't like from the people who have good intentions.
Deliberately averted in Phineas and Ferb. They kinda broke the "no idiots or jerks" policy with Suzy, though.
Peter the Panda.
Dr. Doofenshmirtz: Peter the Panda? You were disassembling my Freezinator ray? While I was singing about my feelings? You! You're dead to me!
Doofenshmirtz's parents were not the nicest parents to Doof. They named their dog "Only Son", made HIM be the lawn gnome whilst NOT MOVING AN INCH, made him wear dresses, did not show up for his FREAKING BIRTH, did not let him swim in public pools, and only ignore him over his brother Roger.
Princess from The Powerpuff Girls is this and a spoiled brat. She has a disturbing Lack of Empathy for a kindergarten-aged girl, throws temper tantrums to her "daddy" when she doesn't get her way and when someone says "no" to her, and doesn't hesitate to step on people to get what she wants, and then she wonders why she is never allowed to be a Powerpuff girl.
Fuzzy Lumpkins, the Gang Green Gang, Him, Sedusa, and a few other villains count.
Dick Hardly was an even bigger example. The guy starts off as a jerk and then turns into a monster. The guy tricks the girls into giving him Chemical X to create knockoff girls so he can make more money. When he was comfronted by the girls for his stunt, he swallows the Chemical X and turns into a monster, and then attempts to drain the chemincal x from the girls, while the professor is watching them die. He was the only villain on the show to die.
King Bob also slipped into this territory on occasion, most notably in "The Rules" and "Pharoah Bob"
The worst ones are Dr. Slicer from "Prickly Is Leaving", Mayor Fitzhugh from "The Biggest Trouble Ever" and Mr. White from "The Story of Whomps" (but especially Dr. Slicer).
Benson from Regular Show, in a "uptight boss" sense. Rigby also counts, in an "impulsive manchild" sense.
Benson's kind of iffy, considering how incredibly stressed out he is. And let's face it, Mordecai and Rigby are pretty awful at their jobs. He does have some more Jerkass moments, but the biggest jerkass in the show is Muscle Man... And he took a level in kindness to Jerk with a Heart of Gold, leaving Rigby as the biggest jackass on the show.
Mayor Jones puts local tourism first and the well-being of his son, Fred, a distant second. The town's main squeeze for tourism is when people dress up as monsters and cause property damage or even harm to others. By episode 13, you'll be expecting him to cross the Moral Event Horizon soon.
And he does in episode 26.
Professor Pericles is even worse, he manipulates everyone else including Jones so he could serve the Niberu, including using slave labor and backstabbing his own gang for the treasure and murdering Hot Dog Water in cold blood
Professor Professor on The Secret Show fills this trope through his childish behavior, his penchant for pulling practical jokes in times of danger, never actually testing his highly dangerous inventions, always leaving out crucial information until the moment, or, oft times, after it's needed, and sending the agents out on random missions. The worst thing he's done is sent them to the "Bermuda Trapezoid" into a fight to the death which ended up with the agents almost being killed in a volcano, simply to get back the satellite that broadcasts his favorite show. However, he is such a fun character that it really doesn't end up mattering in the long run.
Some viewers claim that Homer Simpson's lovable goofiness was exaggerated into him becoming a selfish, arrogant, callous, deceitful, over-impulsive, obnoxious, moronic, greedy, alcoholic, near-mindless jerk who treated his wife like a slave, emotionally bullied his children when he wasn't deliberately avoiding them or physically abusing Bart, and regularly broke the law and endangered lives, particularly during seasons 9-12, when Mike Scully was showrunner. To quote The Simpsons "Treehouse of Horror XIII":
Homer-Clone: Me good dad. Lisa: Has Dad seemed a bit stupider than usual lately? Homer-Clone:(is bashing the car with a baseball bat) Bart: Eh, me no notice.
In a deconstruction of this trope, "Homer's Enemy" from the episode of the same name, Frank Grimes, reacts to Homer the way a normal person would. He can't seem to get anyone else to recognize the obvious. In the end, he goes insane and accidentally electrocutes himself ("What's this? 'Danger: High Voltage'. Well I don't need safety gloves because I'm Homer Simp...(Zap)").
In The Simpsons Movie, his family starts treating this attitude more realistically; the writers also admit during production test audiences found Homer a little too rough at this point and he was adjusted accordingly. In fact, Bart realizes Flanders is a better father even though he is a little too pious, Marge realizes that she doesn't know why she even loves him anymore, and the whole family decides to abandon him. Homer spends the next part of the movie learning he can't keep acting this way or he will be lonely for the rest of his life, and he eventually becomes prepared to make a Heroic Sacrifice to save the town and his family. He kind of makes a mess of it, but at least he's now trying...
Lampshaded in "E Pluribus Wiggum", when Homer, in the process of doing something that will very quickly result in a gas-main explosion that obliterates a city block, takes a cigar out of a box marked "Jerkass Homer Cigars". Though since this was something he did by accident, it might really fall under Idiot Ball.
Lampshaded again in "Mommy Beerest", Homer: "Dah duhh that's me, Jerkass Homer".
Josh Weinstein and Bill Oakley, the showrunners behind season 7 and 8 (Right before the Mike Scully's run, and some of the two highest fan-rated seasons) have themselves admitted in DVD commentaries that Homer does get dumber and dumber with every passing season. A side effect of the show running for longer than anyone ever expected it to, as well as the fact that it's pretty unavoidable if you want the show to remain funny and surprising (Homer simply has to top himself). They have made effort to keep Homer from appearing villainous or too much of a jerk, though later staff may not have put as much effort into it. In season 1, Homer was willing to kill himself out of the shame of being an unfit father. He tied himself to a large rock, dragged it to a bridge, and was about to drown himself by throwing it off a bridge, but his family loved him so much that they went and stopped him. He then saw how close they came to being run over and started a campaign for better road signs to be installed in Springfield, which snowballed into a campaign for public safety in general. Mr. Burns gave Homer his job back out fear that his competence in public safety could bring down the entire power plant. Has the change become clear yet?
He already had some jerkassness in season 2's "Dead Putting Society", even when Flanders apologized for having a better life then Homer, the latter continues to break him. And the same treatment he gives to Bart.
Bart has also slipped into jerkass territory as of late. While he has his share of mischief, he usually means no harm to the victims of his pranks and does try to make it up if it goes too far. Nowadays, Bart's pranks either are borderline physically harming people or completely overstep them and he does all for the sake of getting a cheap laugh or getting out of homework.
Lisa: Bart, you would really ruin Mom and Dad's marriage just to get out of a little homework? Bart: Hey, hey! I would end all life on this planet if it would get me out of learning fractions. Lisa: Fractions aren't so hard. All you have to do is find a lowest common denominator. For example, one-half plus one-third is four— Bart: End...All...Life...On...This...Planet!
The worst was probably where Bart kept instigating arguments between Homer and Marge to keep them from noticing what he was up to. Lisa even called him out on it by saying "Congratulations, you're now a sociopath."
There was also the time Bart discovered a semi-anesthetized Principal Skinner unattended in a dentist's chair and trained an X-ray machine on his crotch.
Marge is hardly a saint either. One of the worst examples is Marge's line in the Season 17 episode "Bart Has Two Mommies" about Bart "sucking" at soccer. It really felt out of character and a horrible thing for Marge to say. It wouldn't have been as bad if we didn't then see Bart standing behind her, crying.
Lisa is also prone to this at times, usually when she tries to force her own personal beliefs on everyone else.
Flanders also became one in later seasons when he evolved from a kind god-loving neighbor into a religious hypocrite who openly mocked other religions but wouldn't take any criticism himself.
Or simply put it, the entire town can be a town full of jerkasses. This is lampshaded in "The Boys of Bummer" episode in a billboard that says "Meaniest City in America."
Eric Cartman. Possibly his Crowning Moment of Jerkassery: spending a huge inheritance on an amusement park, refusing to open it to the public, then running TV advertisements telling everyone that they can't come. Cartman examples could fill several pages, but the episode "Awesome-O" really stands out. Butters generally treats Cartman at least better than Stan and Kyle (though he has admitted not liking him much) and has never actively done anything to hurt him, or anybody. For no reason other than having material to humiliate Butters with (because he seems to get a kick out of taking advantage of Butters' naiveté), Cartman pretends to be Butters' new robot friend to find out his secrets. He doesn't feel guilty about it at any point either. That particular scheme however, backfired in several ways.
Stan's dad Randy was Flanderized into one as seasons passed, devolving into a spoilt, irrational Man Child who often disregards his son to erupt into chaos over everything.
Kyle's dad Gerald can be one. Being a lawyer has given him several other opportunities to choose the side that pays better over his own son, and he's been a jerk in other ways on occasion (like in "Smug Alert").
As is Kyle's mom Sheila at times. Her overzealous attempts to make a "safer environment" for the town's kids involving starting a war with Canada and trying to kill Terrance and Phillip in cold blood. She can also be rather overbearing to her son, at times, to the point he is shown to be outright terrified of her.
This is probably the only way to explain why your friend is dying from Muscular Dystrophy to a ten-year-old. There are many instances in South Park where characters comment that God is a jerk, such as "Cartmanland" (Cartman gets a million dollars, and Kyle gets a hemorroid) and "Jewpadabra" (Cartman asks why Egyptian children should die when it is God who has hardened Pharoah's heart).
Spongebob often crosses the line from "lovable idiot" to what could only be described as "insane idiot", such as whipping the entire town into a mad panic over a butterfly, or (twice!) collecting every single citizen in town and locking them up. One episode has the town throw a "National No Spongebob Day", where everyone except Spongebob burns a giant wooden Spongebob and dances around the ashes. This trope is especially prominent in the post-movie episodes.
Though, as "Once Bitten" shows, the people of Bikini Bottom can work themselves into a mad panic without Spongebob involved.
Mr. Krabs is an even bigger jerkass than Spongebob. He's wrecked Spongebob's house, eaten him when he was shipped back home after a failed attempt to infiltrate Pearl's slumber party, tried to tear a guy's arm off over a penny, stole a $1.25 secret ingredient and tried to frame Spongebob for it, and sold Spongebob's soul to the Flying Dutchman for 62 cents after Spongebob stood up for him. Even Squidward, who hates Spongebob enough to let it happen, called him out on the last one, not believing that Mr. Krabs could be THAT big of a jerkass, and Krabs himself realizes he went too far there and throws the money back. It only gets worse as the seasons go on where Krabs does anything in his power to get money even if it involves causing extreme misfortune for others (The Krabby Kronicle and The Krusty Sponge are prime examples of this) and let's not even get started on what Krabs does to Plankton in the later seasons. For the most part, the callousness of Mr Krabs's and everyone else's character (everyone is a jerkass at times) is a case of Depending on the Writer; they can shift back to their more likable early characterizations at times, though when they play this trope, they play it very straight.
Squidward. Sure- he isn't a bad guy, and it's understandable WHY he finds Spongebob so annoying. It would be odd for a person NOT to find SB annoying. But his treatment of Spongebob goes into jerkass territory quite often. Usually he rights his wrongs soon after, but he's a jerk for being a jerk in the first place. His actions often fall under Dude, Not Funny! territory. Like making Spongebob cry in the Christmas special, by shattering his belief in Santa or the April Fool's Day special, in which he played a horribly cruel prank on Spongebob, which resulted in the poor guy bursting into tears and running home, sobbing. Squidward is still a good person, shown by how he was remorseful a little while later, but he's still a jerk for not only performing that prank, but LAUGHING at Spongebob while the prank was happening.
Squilliam is a bigger example. He's Squidward without his redeeming qualities. He makes Squidward look like a saint. Squilliam takes pride in trying to humiliate Squidward, only to be Hoist by His Own Petard.
Also, there's Dennis, (sometimes) Plankton, and Patrick.
Sadly, Mrs. Puff becomes this when she attempts to murder Spongebob.
Superjail!'s eponymous prison is naturally filled with various characters that all exhibit this trope in some fashion. The creators once claimed that although there are many hardened criminals in the cast, it's the staff that actually have more issues and cruelty:
Although the Warden is generally goofy and childish, he often takes advantage of Jared and mistreats him. He was also shown to have more of a sadistic streak in earlier episodes, and would think nothing of letting inmates die to provide his amusement (or become food, as in the pilot). This was toned down a bit in later seasons, when his childishness become the bigger personality trait.
Alice purposely uses her job as a guard to inflict sexual torture on inmates or force them into being her boyfriends, and is also shown to push Jared around and mock him.
The inmates in general can get along at times, but aren't above manipulating or ostracizing one another. Nicky, the greaser-type inmate, has been shown as a ringleader to those who pick on Ash.
The Mistress (as female counterpart of the Warden) has her own vicious personality minus his carefree childish nature. She's shown to beat her own assistant for talking on the phone without permission, take over the Superjail for no reason other than to show up Warden (and demote him to being an inmate), and generally act like a bad-tempered snob. This seems to be subverted after she becomes a hippie.
Lord Stingray is another example, owing to him being a Card-Carrying Villain and caring little about anyone else (except if it's his pet Fang). He even reduces Mistress to tears by yelling at her and insisting on having the most control in their relationship, to where she breaks up with him.
The Twins and their family members can count as well. The Twins orchestrate death and destruction on a whim, and ate their own potential offspring after manipulating Alice into helping them birth him. The Triplets beat and humiliate the Twins for their own amusement, kill and capture rival species multiple times just for fun, and are implied to have abused and taken things from their younger brothers their whole lives. The Twins' father? Gleefully takes pleasure in torturing his youngest sons for the purpose of having them "study", will neglect any children who can't impress him, and once sent a vicious shapeshifting dog in his first attempt to capture said youngest (although she didn't go as far as to kill THEM, she was shown to be very efficient and uncontrollable in her violence).
The Warden's father is shown to be a major one in flashbacks, with one particular moment depicting him forcing his son to decapitate a puppy.
Burke and Murray, the former junkyard managers before the protagonists, in SWAT Kats. Every time they show up, expect them to mock and laugh at Chance and Jake.
Tales From The Cryptkeeper (animated series) - The hunter from the episode Hunted. He openly admits to the English speaking Amazonian native that he will use the animals he captured to make fur coats, rugs and fancy appetizers and not take them to a zoo as the boy hoped. The hunter tries to justify his actions by claiming his people also hunt the animals for food, but the boy retorts that they only hunt the animals for as much as they need. He also lets the hunter know that there are not as numerous as he believes and the ones he captured may be even the last of their species. Hunter's response? "Then all the better. The rarer they are the higher the price." Wow, what a total shithead. Luckily he gets his at the end of the episode.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2012) has a prominent example in Vic/Spider Bytez, who spends most of his first appearance treating the Turtles like dirt and mockingly calling them "kung-fu frogs." When he's captured by the Kraang, the guys actually stop to wonder why they should risk their lives to save him.
Some engines from Thomas the Tank Engine fall into this such as James, Sir Handel, Duncan. They will be seen as rude, arrogant, condescending, and ill-behaved, often seen as the ones insulting the nicer and sympathetic engines having a difficult sitation. They will often face Laser-Guided Karma which will damage their prideful attitudes as well as earning a stern talking to from The Fat Controller for their behavior, which will having them learn their lessons in the end, at least for a while.
Diesel is the most prominent example of the series thanks to his antagonism towards steam engines and finds every opportunity in making them miserable with the help of his diesel brethren such as 'Arry and Bert, who also qualify.
Jerry of Tom and Jerry occasionally picked on Tom for no reason in some of the earlier cartoons, though the times where Tom is the first to start the fight far outnumber the times where Jerry attacks without being provoked. And in episodes where Jerry really goes overboard, Tom tends to win, though that doesn't change the fact that Jerry was sometimes a jerkass in retaliation.
There was also Tom's owner Clint Clobber from the Gene Dietch shorts, he had an extremely nasty temper and beat the crap out of Tom for even the littlest offenses and he was even shown laughing at some of the cruel things he did to him.
Jerry was really more of a Screwy Squirrel in the Chuck Jones shorts. Jones admitted later on that he didn't always understand how to write for the two characters, and this is the man who brought us the Coyote and Roadrunner cartoons.
Given the nature of the show almost every single character of the Total Drama series had at least one jerkass moment during the course of the series.
Does it count as ironic if it's due to Sentinel's refusing to take any responsibility for the apparent loss of Elita-1 after he convinced her and Optimus to go to an off-limits organic planet full of giant deadly spiders and just letting Optimus take it all on himself without saying a thing about his own involvement?
The TF Wiki page for Sentinel Prime makes something of a Running Gag out of "Sentinel Prime did this. Jerk. Then he did that. Jerk."
The disambiguation page for "Sentinel Prime" even distinguishes his entry with "2007 â€” Sentinel Prime, a jerk and member of the Autobot Elite Guard in Transformers Animated."
Ultimate Spider-Man: Nova. Most of the cast can be pretty bad, but Nova is ridiculously overboard in this respect, being an arrogant, cocky bastard who has a a huge dislike of Spider-Man and uses any chance he can to put him down.
Brie and Sloan from The Wild Thornberrys movie, unlike the other villains in the show, they're not played for laughs in the slightest. They seem like nice people at first, offering to help Eliza get back to her family and helping save an injured rhino, but it's all an act as Eliza later finds out that Brie and Sloan are the poachers that stole a cheetah cub and shot the rhino and are planning to kill thousands of elephants with an electric fence. They threaten to kill Debbie unless Eliza tells them how she knew of their plan(forcing her to reveal her secret powers) and after Eliza thwarts their plan, Sloan decides to shoot the elephants instead despite Eliza being in the vicinity(something which even his own men question him on), then he grabs Eliza and tries to kill her by throwing her into the river. When it comes to poachers, Sloan is the bad guy.
Lucy from Winx Club falls into this category. She is often abusive with Mirta (who, it is later revealed, has been her friend since they were in diapers), and teams up with the Trix almost every time they come knocking.