June 3 is National Donut Day, and there’s two ways you could look at that: As yet another nonsensical manufactured “holiday” intended to fuel commerce, or as simply an excuse to eat a donut — and honestly, it’s hard to have a bad day when you’ve started it with something powdered, jelly-filled or sprinkled, so grab a dozen and share with some friends.
That would certainly be the attitude for the dozen characters below. Each comes from a beloved film or television show and has an affinity for the breakfast pastry invented by Dutch settlers in North America in the 19th century. Read on for the memorable moments, and be sure to notice how each scene reveals qualities about the character — desire, gluttony, weakness, friendliness or even deception — simply based on his or her food of choice. Because sometimes, the best part of the donut is what’s hidden inside.
The king of all donuts, the name Homer Simpson has become synonymous with fried-dough confectionaries. As you’ll see below, it’s an impressive feat because he’s had plenty of competition.
Although 26 seasons and 574 episodes have certainly yielded plenty of donut jokes, perhaps the best was a “Treehouse of Horror” episode where Homer travels through time to a seemingly-perfect existence — only to flee it when he thinks donuts no longer exist. The kicker, of course, comes when you see the delicious weather conditions of this alternate reality.
Agent Dale Cooper
“Twin Peaks” mastermind David Lynch has a tendency to fetishize everyday objects we too often take for granted (coffee, cherry pie, logs). Perhaps the greatest example of this is a classic “Peaks” sequence that has the Special Agent in charge of the Laura Palmer murder investigation uncovering “a policeman’s dream” alongside his new local law enforcement buddies, in the form of a special breakfast to prepare them for a long day of sleuthing.
If there is a heaven, undoubtedly the first meal there is an all-you-can-eat buffet of every donut flavor imaginable, stacked symetrically by Lucy Moran.
Melissa Benoist and “Supergirl” executive producer Ali Adler seem downright obsessed with donuts, constantly posting photos of themselves chowing down during early-morning shoots. Undoubtedly, these two (and other “Supergirl” actors who have participated) know exactly how best to celebrate National Donut Day.
Not to be outdone, when Supergirl and Flash teamed up to do some crimefighting together, one of the things they bonded over was the sugary treats that help Barry Allen keep up his energy.
In Los Angeles, few landmarks are as iconic as the enormous sign designed for Randy’s Donuts near LAX. It has been used in numerous movies and TV shows over the years — but none more prominent than a funny scene in the otherwise-forgettable “Iron Man 2” that has Nick Fury tracking down Tony Stark while he’s taking taking a breather inside the giant donut. After finding Iron Man, Fury and Stark then go inside the shop to enjoy donuts and coffee together — and talk about some crazy idea he has called “The Avengers.”
In a beloved Season One episode of “Adventure Time,” Jake steals from a witch’s stash of “billions of donuts,” so she transforms his lower half into what looks like Mike Myers in tighty-whities. Later the witch encounters a sad fake-out we can all identify with, mistaking a bagel for a donut.
Paul Thomas Anderson’s early films were all about capturing the vibe of southern California, a place where life unfolds in 24-hour burger shacks, diners and donut shops. So, although the mood of most of these clips is comical, we’d be remiss to skip over a tense, brilliantly-orchestrated scene from Anderson’s “Boogie Nights” that focuses on one man’s desire for a donut –and how life can change in the blink of an eye.
Four words: “Donuts, go nuts”
Bob & Doug McKenzie
What a shame that pop culture has largely forgotten these comedic Canadian characters portrayed by Rick Moranis and Dave Thomas on SCTV. Check out “Strange Brew,” hoser, and then watch this clip with the two beer-swigging brothers wondering why it’s always so hard to find a parking space at a donut shop.
In a memorable plotline from the Season 5 “Sex and the City” episode entitled “Cover Girl,” Miranda went to Weight Watchers. There she met “Tom Big-Boned,” a Krispy Kreme-loving guy with a bad habit of not wiping his mouth. Why must all the good men be bagel-eaters?
If you just so happen to be a serial killing psychopath, the best way to throw people off the scent might be to offer them donuts. Hey, it kept Dexter Morgan a free man for eight seasons, right?
It’s one of the all-time classic sequences in cinema, and it launched the intense Vincent D’Onofrio into a decades-spanning career that currently has him playing Kingpin on “Daredevil.” It is the opening moments of “Full Metal Jacket,” depicting the hellacious indoctrination of an overweight Marine recruit.
Facing down Senior Drill Instructor Hartman (played by R. Lee Ermey, a former Marine himself), Pyle risks it all — pain, humiliation, forced labor — for a jelly donut. So, as you enjoy your pastry of choice on National Donut Day, please remember the sacrifices of those donut lovers who’ve come before you, like Private Pyle.