The 5 most underrated fictional journalists


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If you ask a journalist to list their favorite fictional reporters from movies or television, you’ll probably hear the names Clark Kent, Lois Lane, or even Ron Burgundy. This post is a tribute to the great, unsung heroes of journalism, those fictional journalists that even real deal reporters should take notes from:

Angela Vidal and Scott Percival, Quarantine

What happens when you’re out shooting a puff piece and a zombie attack breaks out? You kick some zombie ass that’s what. Reporter Angela Vidal (Jennifer Carpenter) and cameraman Scott Percival (Steve Harris) keep the camera rolling, even as everyone around them turns into flesh-eating monsters. At one point, Scott uses the presumably very expensive camera as a weapon, knocking out zombies with the blunt end of the camera. He then wipes the blood off the lens and keeps rolling. Now that’s bad ass.

Polly Perkins, Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow

Before the age of digital cameras and instant previewing, journalists were saddled with cameras that required the film to be developed before it could be viewed. Bad news for reporter Polly Perkins (Gwyneth Paltrow) who witnesses amazing adventures and spectacles along with ace pilot Joe Sullivan (Jude Law). The problem is she only has a few clicks left on her one and only camera. It is up to Polly to use her news judgment to decide which of the fantastic things she witnesses are worth capturing on film. She does a great job of it, saving her last few photos to document the awesome things around her. In the end, she saves her last image to photograph her true love Joe…a stirring idea until she realizes she left the lens cap on.

Colleen Lipman, Bring it on Again

Anyone who has ever worked at a college newspaper or broadcast outlet knows how challenging it can be to produce news with a short staff or limited resources. Student reporter Colleen Lipman (Katherine Bailess) makes the most of the situation, doing energetic standups from around the California State College campus and tossing live to…herself.

Edward Cunningham, 7 Faces of Dr. Lao

Small-town newspaperman Edward Cunningham (John Ericson) is a grizzled reporter who is singularly focused and will stop at nothing to expose the corruption of the town’s wealthy land-grabber Clinton Stark (Arthur O’Connell). That is until Dr. Lao (Tony Randall) and his crazy bananas circus comes to town. Edward must then pursue the two biggest stories ever to hit the town at the same time. He asks question, refuses to back down, and makes lots of stern, frowny-faces along the way.

Amber Atkins, Drop Dead Gorgeous

Amber Atkins (Kirsten Dunst), an aspiring journalist and contestant in the fictional Sarah Rose American Teen Princess Pageant, gets her shot when a television reporter is hit by a stray bullet during a live broadcast. She calmly picks up the microphone and begins recounting the events in true TV reporter style. For her grace under pressure, Amber is given a job as an evening news anchor at a local television station. Pretty impressive and one heck of a way to land a job.

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