The List: Top 10 captains of all time

Staff Writer
Columbus Alive

They guide our ships, host our favorite kids' shows and intoxicate us. In honor of the release of “Captain Phillips” (see review on Page 48), here are our favorite captains of all time (future included). 

10. Captain James T. Kirk

Whether fighting Spock gladiator-style, making out with blue alien-women or wrestling with Tribbles, Kirk made "Star Trek" beautifully ridiculous.  

9. Captain Morgan aka Sir Henry Morgan

A dastardly Welsh pirate whose violent siege of Caribbean port cities earned him a position as perhaps the greatest liquor rep of all time. 

8. Captain Kangaroo

Bob Keeshan got his start on "Howdy Doody," then became the host of the longest-running kids show ever (1955-1984), which brought us friends like Mr. Green Jeans, Mr. Moose and Bunny Rabbit. Not to mention he kind of looks like a kinder, less drunk version of Quint from "Jaws." 

7. Captain Hazel "Hank" Murphy

As leader of SeaLab 2021, he is the most incompetent captain on the list. His obsessions — Chopper Dave, Adrienne Barbeau and Happy Cake Oven — left his crew miserable most of the time and often led to the destruction of SeaLab. But he gave us classic lines like: "Save it for Queen Doppel-poppolis," "It's like a Koala bear crapped a rainbow in my brain" and "I just got beat up a lot, so now, when I get the chance, I like to sucker-punch people." 

6. Cap'n Crunch

The Master and Commander of breakfast cereal brought us Crunch Berries and peanut butter in a form that could destroy the roof of your mouth. It tasted pretty good, too. Suck it, Toucan Sam. 

5. Captain America

Created during WWII as a propaganda tool, one of Marvel's most recognized heroes was a government employee who fought Nazis (even Hitler himself) and the evil Red Skull while leading the legendary Avengers. 

4. Captain Planet

While Captain America was charged with merely saving us from anything threatening the American way, Captain Planet was acting globally by saving the whole world from environmental disaster. Unfortunately, now that he's retired and living in Florida, he believes global warming is a myth. 

3. Captain Nemo

As captain and designer of the Nautilus — the most badass submarine until the invention of nuclear weapons — Nemo fought against the tyranny of imperialism and giant squids. 

2. Captain Stubing

As the lovable captain of the Love Boat, Stubing kept the ship on course while keeping the laugh track rolling. And sometimes he even helped passengers fall in love!

1. Captain Caveman

Not only is he the first captain ever, he's also the first superhero ever. Captain Caveman was a prehistoric hero who was frozen and later discovered by the Teen Angels to help them solve mysteries. (What was Hanna-Barbera's obsession with mystery solving?) He could fly, pull just about anything from his fur and carried an iconic club with more gadgets than the iPhone has apps.