Fragrancing Fictional Fathers

18th June, 2015

Father’s Day is a very modern holiday (first observed in 1908, though not really becoming a Thing until decades later) and it’s a pretty commercial one. Still, it seems like a pretty decent idea and why not treat the old man for a day? 

Anyway, all this is just another thinly veiled excuse for me to put some words around a series of gifs from the world of film and television. 


Dexter Morgan – Dexter


(But quite a handsome one.)

Still, as psychopaths go Dexter seems… alright. He certainly seemed to soften slightly after becoming a father. I mean, he still killed people, but he always made sure that his son had a suitable baby sitter while he was out murdering. 

For Dexter, it has to be Parfumerie Generale’s sadly discontinued Psychotrope. A bizarre, and fascinating aquatic leather scent that was at once metallic, clean, bloody and animalic. 


Mufasa – The Lion King

Try not to cry. Go on, try. YOU MONSTER. 

The death of [SPOILER] Mufasa in The Lion King is one of Disney’s saddest moments, and that is saying something for the company that shot Bambi’s mother, nearly killed Shadow in Homeward Bound and tried to separate Troy and Gabriella in all three High School Musical films. 

In short: it’s super emotional, but not as emotional as when he comes back AS A CLOUD SUMMONED BY A BABOON. I don’t know about you, but my father has never come to me as a cloud.


I don’t really know what a Lion smells like, if I’m honest but he’s a strong and much-loved leader of the pride so I imagine he’d wear something humble and classic: Guerlain’s Vetiver


Frank Reynolds – It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia

Frank Reynolds is horrible - properly disgusting man with an obsession with eggs and absolutely no care for either of his children. 

And I bloody love him. 

He has lived the high-life for years, built a successful company and now he has decided to take his millions and use them to explore every kind of depravity. Grotesque, subversive and hilarious. 

I can’t imagine Frank would wear perfume, maybe a bit of Axe at a push and some Joop for special occasions.


Dr Alex Hesse – Junior

The second film to star one of the finest cinematic double-acts of the twentieth century: Arnold Schwarzenegger and Danny DeVito. They just WORK together. Ivan Reitman knew that. The world didn’t. The world, it seems, was also not ready to see The Terminator grow heavily pregnant and give birth. 

This film gave us the delight of Arnie dressed as somebody’s grandmother and the sheer horror of seeing him in labour. The birth scenes here are so off-putting they make Eraserhead look like Call the Midwife. 

The film blurs the boundaries of sex and gender.  Dr Hesse is could be seen as a representation of Plato’s child of the moon; both male and female with extraordinary power*. Bearing this in mind, I have gone for a lunar theme, choosing the gorgeous Lune de Givre from Cloon Keen Atelier.   


Daniel Hillard – Mrs Doubtfire

What can I really say here? We all know Mrs Doubtfire – one of Robin William’s most loveable roles. 

Faced with losing his children, Daniel Hillard decides to apply for the role of their nanny in a desperate attempt to be able to see them. 

Again, this may not be the best way of dealing with the situation. It shows a certain want of balance.

In Mrs Doubtfire, Hillard is able to become the kind of guardian every kid would want; anarchic, up for a good party and ready to step up to your enemies should the need arise.

Mrs Doubtfire also allows Hillard to drop some proper 90’s emotional truths.

As for the fragrance? Well, Hillard is an out of work actor so anything, so long as it’s not too pricey. Mrs Doubtfire, however, is an old fashioned lady from the highlands and as such would want nothing more imposing than a little spritz of Yardley’s English Lavender.  


Tobias Fünke – Arrested Development

Tobias is another father who has disguised himself in order to spend time with his daughter, though not as successfully. 

Fünke is a sexually repressed, never-nude analrapist (analyst and therapist) turned actor who will do anything to break into showbiz, including sell out his family to a film studio. An honorary member of the Blue Man group, Karl Weathers disciple and former corporate-folk singer - he’s done it all. 

He may be self-obsessed, but at least he makes the occasional, poorly judged attempt to be a good father. 

And he’s stylish, too. 

I like to think of Tobias, blissfully ignorant of any homoerotic context, wearing Etat Libre d’Orange’s Tom of Finland.


Damon Macready / Big Daddy – Kick-Ass

His wife was murdered, he lost his job and was left to raise a daughter on his own. 

And Damon did an excellent, if unconventional, job - say what you want about her hobbies but Hit Girl has high self-esteem, confidence and a strong affection for her father. 

Together, they make one of the most heart-warming crime fighting teams ever to grace our screens. 

Big Daddy would smell just right in B from Blood Concept – masculine, smoky with a good hint of gunpowder. 


Phil Dunphy – Modern Family

The self-confessed Cool Dad. 

Phil Dunphy is brilliant. He genuinely thinks that his children are the coolest people on earth and wants nothing more than to spend time with them.  

But it Phil knows it takes more than this to be a brilliant father. He also has:

1. Wisdom

2. Bravery

3. A heart

What a guy. 

Old Spice, perhaps? 

A classic that has been given a fairly tongue-in-cheek facelift for the modern man. 


There you have it! Some fathers have been scented. Some have not. We’ve all had to think about Arnold Schwarzenegger giving birth and for that I am sorry.

Feel free to chip in below and tell me what I got wrong / who I missed / the true meaning of Father’s Day.


 *Probably not though, eh?

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About the author: Callum Langston-Bolt

Callum Langston-Bolt worked for several years in fragrance after accidentally landing a job in a perfume shop while studying English. From the West Country he has been settled in London for seven years. His interests include fragrance, film, wine and dogs. He helps run the monthly fragrance meet-up Perfume Lovers London with Odette Toilette and Laurin Taylor.



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      • joshuaang | 19th June 2015 04:16

        Oh, I would have gone with Let Me Play the Lion with Mufasa, but that's just me ;)

        Lovely and fun article, by the way!

      • odioustoilet | 19th June 2015 08:45

        I thought it turned out that Danny DeVito's character on IASIP was not the father of those two idiots.

      • Cloon Keen Maggie | 19th June 2015 18:20

        Wonderful Callum! We were laughing out loud this morning...I don't know if I'll every be able to think of Lune de Givre the same way again 😂

        I think I'll include it in our new training manual!

      • blackheart2925 | 19th June 2015 18:33

        In tapatalk the link is not working...getting an invalid link msg :(

      • Grant | 19th June 2015 18:42

        Yes this is a bug in tapatalk which doesn't seem to recognise same site non-forum links. I've reported it to them a few times but they don't seem bothered.

      • CallumBolt (article author) | 19th June 2015 18:42

        You're quite right, but I couldn't resist throwing him in there.

      • CallumBolt (article author) | 19th June 2015 18:43

        So glad you enjoyed it, Maggie! :)


      • CallumBolt (article author) | 19th June 2015 18:45

        Ah, yes! That one completely slipped my mind! Even The Lion Cupboard from 4160 Tuesdays...

      • hednic | 20th June 2015 20:52

        That was entertaining to read.

      • Unveg | 22nd June 2015 21:32

        Could someone pick a scent for Charles Brosnon in Death Wish?

      • hednic | 11th July 2015 03:02

        Invincible by FL Parfums (appropriate for his character)