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5 Reasons Thornton Melon Is One Of Film’s Best Comedic Characters

The world lost Rodney Dangerfield 13 years ago today (October 5.)  He was one of the most iconic stand-up comedians of all time, but let us not forget the magic he brought to the silver screen, particularly in 1986’s Back To School.

For those that haven’t seen Back To School (and shame on you if you haven’t), Dangerfield plays Thornton Melon, an over-the-top businessman that enrolls in his son’s university to help him achieve success, both in and out of class.  Many may look to Caddyshack and Al Czervik as Dangerfield’s most iconic role, but when you look at the reasons below, you’ll realize that Thornton Melon is not only Dangerfield’s best role, but one of the best comedic roles, period.

(Warning:  NSFW language ahead.)

He wasn’t afraid to face off against the most insane professor on campus

Due to serving in Vietnam, Professor Tergeson (played by the late Sam Kinnison in one of the best casting decisions ever) had more than a few issues, but even when he lost his cool, Thornton Melon fired back.

Back to School (5/12) Movie CLIP - Professor Terguson Loses It (1986) HD

Back to School movie clips: BUY THE MOVIE: Don't miss the HOTTEST NEW TRAILERS: CLIP DESCRIPTION: During a discussion of the Vietnam War, Professor Terguson (Sam Kinison) yells at a student, inspiring Thornton (Rodney Dangerfield) to speak up.