Sometimes it’s the artwork, sometimes it’s the subject. Sometimes it’s both. Richard Roeper’s rankings of the 10 strangest, goofiest and just plain wrong statues in North America.
Frank Zappa. The bust of Zappa in Baltimore was a gift from Lithuania, which has its own bust of Zappa, who never set foot in Lithuania. There’s something brilliant about that.
Arthur Ashe. Great man, mediocre statue. Holding a tennis racket and a book like the snooty bad guy in a frat comedy, while children stretch their arms toward him, Ashe looks as if he’s saying, “Ha! No books for you! Your’e not tall enough!”
Standing on a Corner. In Winslow, Ariz. Get it?
Wayne Gretzky (the one in Edmonton). Looks like it was formed by a 6-year-old with Play-Doh.
The Fonz. Henry Winkler is a lovely man and the Fonz was a great character–but in bronze he looks like a grinning demon out of an episode of “Community.”
Samantha Stevens. A tribute to a witch. In Salem. Where they held trials for humans accused of being witches.
Bud Selig. Really? A statue of the man who decided the All-Star game should determine home-field advantage in the World Series, among other follies.
Marilyn Monroe. Thank God the hideous, giant, panty-bearing statue of Marilyn has been removed from Michigan Avenue. The memories still cause nightmares.
Joe Paterno. As a work of sculpture, it’s quite impressive. But the Paterno statue now stands as a reminder of the worst scandal in American sports history–and a once-revered man who could have done something about it but instead remained as still as a statue. Shameful.