Alfred Pennyworth vs. Waylon Smithers

January 28, 2011 at 1:03 pm (Fictional Character Battles) (, , , , )

Alfred Pennyworth is a butler.

Yup. Definitely a butler.

Waylon Smithers is a butler.

And a dancing fiend!

So what we have here, folks, is a battle of butlers. A butler battle, if you will.

Butlers butt heads! we could say, but we won’t , because why pick the low-hanging fruit?

In a battle of buttling, which of these two gents will reign triumphant? Will it be Batman’s butler? Will it be Burns’ butler? Will it be alliteration, which is just having a field day here?

Let’s find out!

Physicality. Smithers is a character in The Simpsons universe, and thus has four fingers and bug eyes. Alfred has the appearance of a distinguished butler, usually with a thin moustache, and has been portrayed in recent filmes by Michael Caine. Michael Caine is so awesome. Winner? Michael Caine. And, by default, Alfred.

Michael Caine wins everything.

Has a more butler-y name? Don’t you love how adding -y to a noun totally makes it an adjective, absolutely breaking no rules of grammar at all? (What do you mean it doesn’t? Shut up! You’re wrong! Wrong!) Alfred Pennyworth’s name is Alfred Pennyworth, which makes him sound like the proper-est British butler that ever lived, coming from a family of butlers who were named things like Jeeves Pennyworth and Butler Pennyworth. Waylon Smithers’ name is Waylon Smithers, and I think the only reason I think of Smithers as a butler’s name is because of him. Winner? Alfred Pennyworth.

Has a better boss? Alfred’s boss is Batman who, by day, is disguised as Bruce Wayne, ladykilling playboy extraordinaire. At night, he fights crime and often comes home with internal injuries and stuff, which Alfred has to treat. That seems like a lot of work above and beyond your traditional description of “butler.” Smithers’ boss is Mr. Burns who, by day, is disguised as Mr. Burns. Whatever, he’s totally evil, and has even tried taking candy from a baby! It’s got to be hard working for someone that evil, don’t you think? Winner? Nobody. They both have terrible, terrible bosses.

On the other hand: WHEEEEEEEEE!

Isn’t actually a butler at all? Smithers is actually an executive assistant to Mr. Burns, but I think butler sounds better. (Alliteration for the win!) Winner? Smithers.

I had an extra picture of Smithers. Please do enjoy it.

Has a big fat man-crush on his boss? Why, yes, I’m sure they do.

Suffers from a deathly allergy? Waylon Smithers is deathly allergic to bee stings. Alfred is deathly allergic to, I don’t know, the Joker’s poison gas or something. But everyone is, so that hardly counts. Winner? Smithers.

Go with a smile, they always say!

Fights a greater evil? Alongside Batman, Alfred fights the supervillains that populate Gotham City. And by “alongside Batman,” I actually mean “from the relative safety of the Batcave.” Still, that’s more than you and I do. There’s a lot of supervillains in Gotham City, which is totally a magnet for crazy. Or Batman is a magnet for crazy. Whichever. Either way? Lots and lots of evil. Smithers, at Mr. Burns’ side, actually perpetuates a lot of acts of evil himself. On the other hand, he has to deal with Homer Simpson on a daily basis. Winner? It’s a tie.

It's not on purpose or anything, but, yeah. Evil.

Speaking of ties, let’s go to the tie-breaker, shall we? Yes, let’s do.

Has better toys to play with when the boss isn’t around? Now, as we all know, Mr. Burns has loads and loads of money. He even once made a thing that blocked out the sun. (Why, yes, as a matter of fact, I can’t remember the proper term for that thing, why do you ask?) So we know that Smithers would have access to all sorts of toys when the boss isn’t around. Except we also know this: the boss never isn’t around. Where Smithers is, Burns is. Also vice versa. Then we have Alfred. And Batman. And the Batmobile. And the Bat-shark repellant. And the Batarangs. And the Batman brand condoms or whatever. Winner? Alfred, because holy bat-toys, Batman!

Also, why the giant bat spotlight on the floor of the Batcave? Is Batman afraid he might mix it up with one of his OTHER secret lairs?

Overall winner? Alfred Pennyworth, but only just.

Michael Caine: punching characters into awesome for decades.


  1. Jamin said,

    i enjoyed this almost as much as the old episodes of “A Bit of Fry and Laurie” i’ve been watching on Netflix 🙂

    • lokifire said,

      Oooh, is that the old Hugh Laurie show? I LOVE that guy!

  2. Jamin said,

    yeah, Hugh Laurie plus Stephen Fry. such a perfect match. also, it’s apparently one of several collaborations between the two of them. it makes me quite envious of the British 😦 … although, we did steal Hugh Laurie, and we seem to be working on Stephen Fry…

    • lokifire said,

      Hooray for America!

  3. Reading Digest: Mendoza! Edition « Dead Homer Society said,

    […] Alfred Pennyworth vs. Waylon Smithers – Comparing two intensely devoted men.  […]

  4. Alfred Pennyworth vs. Waylon Smithers said,

    […] the-simpsons « Tag Feed […]

  5. Bill Dunbar said,

    “Why is there a giant Bat symbol spotlight?”

    Because if there was a giant penny, a billboard-sized Joker card, and an animatronic T. rex dinosar instead… some people might not recognize that it is the Batcave.

    • lokifire said,

      But only Batman needs to recognize it as the batcave! It’s a secret lair. Your logic is flawed, sir, flawed!

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