This Sunday, HBO will air the series finale of Veep, closing the door on seven seasons of political ineptitude, ego clashes, and adult temper tantrums. Much of Veep’s legacy will lie in Julia Louis-Dreyfus serving six terms as Best Leading Actress in a Comedy, and of course in the moments when its satire nailed (and sometimes predicted) real-world politics. But Veep was often most enjoyable as an excuse to watch one of TV’s strongest ensembles lob baroque, obscene insults at each other in the manner series creator Armando Ianucci perfected on The Thick of It. The bullying feels all the more justified because, this being a show dealing in U.S. politics, most of the characters deserve what they get.
And the most deserving target of all — and that’s really saying something — is walking waste of space Jonah Ryan (Timothy Simons). Apparently modeled after Ted Cruz, the Jolly Green Jizzface is a cartoonish representation of every self-assured idiot male in this country. There’s something immensely gratifying about watching everyone on the show, at every level of its political totem pole, tell this stand-in for the idiocy of evil to fuck off back to Westworld.
Looking back over seven seasons of put-downs reveals that there’s a real art to the Jonah insult, the formula for which is roughly “things that are taller than wide, and then something gross added to it.” However, sometimes they have the truncated simplicity of a zen koan: Timothy Simons revealed that the most stinging one he ever heard was just that he’s “the wrong shape.” So in honor of this week’s finale, which may or may not end in a Ryan 2020 presidency, Vulture is proud to provide you with our patented Jonad Insult Generator, for all your yelling-at-the-news, shutting-down-your-shitty-cousin-at-Thanksgiving needs. Use responsibly.
More on the End of Veep
- How to Write a Jonah Insult
- The Story Behind Veep’s Final Joke on Selina
- Selina Meyer Was Awful. That’s What Made Her Great.